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Security Building Lofts

I read this piece over on Curbed LA about how Urban Pacific Builders is lagging on the completion of the Security Building Lofts, and I wanted to comment on the post, but alas there is no place to leave comments on Curbed LA and no link to email the author / editor. So here is what I was going to post on their site: I will say one thing for the Security Building Lofts, after they removed the wooden piss soaked sidewalk protection, turned on the street lights and posted security guards around the building the obvious crime on the corner has really decreased, and it doesn't reek of urine anymore.

UPDATE: I sent an email to their general account:

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005 -

The Producers

Penelope and I watched The Producers tonight, which today was nominated for 4 golden globe awards and was hilarious. Here is the review I wrote.

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005 -

Microsoft Specializing In Being A Day Late and a Dollar Short

Microsoft, who I personally don't care for too much, has once again proven itself to be the last in line at the pop stand. First of all they are partnering with MTV to create an online music store / subscription service called Urge, which will offer 2 million songs, but which won't work on iPods or Macintosh computers. The only snag for M$ is that iPods make up 75% of the portable music player market share, so they have engineered their own obsolescence before even releasing the service to the public.

Next they are partnering with MCI to provide VOIP support in their instant messenger program allowing you to make calls from your PC to landlines and cell phones. Gee nobody has thought of this before, oh wait there is Vonage (which I use and it rocks) and Skype, who have both been doing this for years, and of course Yahoo is about to beat them to market with the integration of their messenger and voice calling.

And finally M$ issued a patch for IE that fixes a "critical" security flaw, one so critical that it took them several weeks to issue a patch, during which time exploit code was released to the public. I'm glad I run OS X.

Actually there is one more thing, it looks like the new Russian government funded TV station Russia Today, is back on the air today after being down due to hacking:

Margarita Simonyan, the channel's editor in chief, said, "There was an attempted invasion of the computer system from outside, which gave rise to viruses, which in turn led to a breakdown in transmission. We apologise to the audience but the channel had to cease broadcasting until the technical malfunctions are mended."

Sounds like bad Microsoft jujus to me, but man are people really running TV station on Windows? Does this seem like a bad idea to anybody but me?

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005 -

Windows Local Live

So I am normally not a big fan of anything Microsoft, but the new Bird's Eye View in the Windows Local Live app is pretty cool. I did have to view it in Firefox as it doesn't work in Safari (big surprise) but the view of my building is pretty cool... there is even some kind of movie production going on in the parking lot next door. [Thanks for the tip Eric]

Thursday, December 8th, 2005 -


I just finished watching the latest episode of the Boondocks and it was hilarious. I especially liked the voice acting of Samuel Jackson playing a white guy with cornrows and quoting the briefcase recovery scene in Pulp Fiction. "The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence".

Monday, December 5th, 2005 -

Downtown Art Ride - Ride Your Bike and See Some Art

Jump on your bike every second Thursday and join us on our art gallery tour through the skewed streets of Downtown LA. We begin our ride at 5:00pm at the Downtown Art Gallery on 1611 S.Hope St. There is a free parking lot next to the gallery if you are unable to ride or take public transit from your location. We will leave the Downtown Art Gallery between 5:30 and 5:45 and make our way to all the galleries that take part in the Downtown Art Walk (except MOCA Grand and the Library.) Here is a google pedometer map of the route we will be taking and here is a map of the actual art walk[pdf]. Don't forget to bring a lock and of course your bike.

UPDATE!! I registered a domain and built a quick website for the Downtown Art Ride. I will be adding more info soon along with a great map that Eric Richardson created at his new job.

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005 -

<del>NO RideArc This Friday</del> Current RideArc Info

UPDATE RideArc Still happens, you can read more about it here: RideARc

Although I don't have any details as to the theme of the ride, as far as I know, the ride is still on and will be meeting at 9pm this Friday at the SCI-Arc parking lot. I'll see you there (and don't forget, next week is the Downtown Art Ride on Thursday and Midnight Ridazz on Friday)! This just in [thanks to Will Campbell for pointing this out to me]:

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005 -

Google Referrals

Google is now paying $1 for ever person that an Adsense user refers to sign up for Firefox with a google toolbar. Explorer Destroyer has some code (which isn't totally XHTML strict, but you can fix that by adding a couple tags as well as adding a blank src="" and alt="" to the image tags) that will allow you to alert IE users that their browser is muy malo and they should switch. Just say no to IE!

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005 -

Secure Cacti with Net-SNMP and SSH Tunnels

So I finally got around to setting up cacti/snmp on my servers. Here is what I did:

  1. Installed cacti on the main monitoring server which we'll call slappy. I used the FreeBSD port of cacti. Slappy already had php/mysql/apache installed.
  2. Added a user snmp to slappy and then I generated keys using ssh-keygen for each of the servers that slappy would be monitoring.
  3. On each of the servers that slappy would be monitoring I installed net-snmp from the ports tree and configured it to run over tcp on and then I added a user snmp with a nologin shell and without password authentication as I will just be using snmp to create a tunnel to the snmpd process that will be running on localhost.
  4. Back on slappy I su'ed to the snmp user and created a shell script that would set up the tunnels to each of the servers using a command like this: ssh -i ~/.ssh/keys/hostname -f -N -L 16101: hostname and then added the script as a cronjob.
  5. Finally I added all the servers to cacti using the basic built-in net-snmp support as well as a couple of qmail and mysql scripts.

So I now have a nice collection of graphs for traffic / disk space / processor, memory and mysql load.

Saturday, November 26th, 2005 -

Quake Prediction?

On Thanksgiving I was listening to As It Happens on the CBC via KPCC and I heard a report about the nasty benzene spill in China. The reporter who was an English teacher living in China said that there was some panic about the water supply being turned off due to the spill and also that there was an earthquake predicted [real audio stream @ 11:25 and 12:14] "The government gave a warning that an earthquake would occur" and "People were sleeping in tents outside". The I just read today that there was a big quake in China. I found it very interesting that the Chinese government predicts earthquakes and tells the people about it, and that is turns out to be true. Very interesting.

Saturday, November 26th, 2005 -


Yesterday Penelope and I went to the gym and instead of using one of the various machines to get our cardio workout, we decided to try Racquetball. We borrowed some racquets and a couple of balls and hit the court. When we were locked into the court we realized that we had no idea how to play the game we had decided to play, so we just hit the ball against the walls and tried to rally as much as we could. It turned out to be great fun and we decided to get ourselves some racquets and figure out the rules. When I got home I found a page with the basic rules of the game which made sense once I read them a few times. The next step was to look on craigslist for some racquets, of which I found 2 for $20 and I just got back from picking them up. They are in great condition, are nice racquets and I am looking forward to playing a game with Penelope tomorrow.

Saturday, November 26th, 2005 -

Frying Fish Bloken Conveyler

Penelope and I went to Frying Fish today to have some rotating mechanized sushi, but the conveyor was broken, oh my! No big deal though, the sushi was still great although we did have to order it all from the chef instead of just picking various items off of the conveyor.

Saturday, November 26th, 2005 -

PC-BSD on my Sharp Mebius

A few years back I visited japan, where I picked up a ultra light and thin sharp mebius laptop with a 30gb hd, 512mb ram and a 750mhz piii. It has been sitting in a bag since then as I am mostly a mac / unix user and I have only used it a couple of times to do some random PC stuff. The other day I noticed that PC-BSD had reached its 1.0 mark and today I decided to download it and check it out. The first run through of the install didn't work, but I tweaked some BIOS settings and it booted right up. PCBSD is really easy to install and has a nice GUI installer that anybody can use. Everything works great and I now have FreeBSD running on my Mebius laptop! I threw in a wireless card and everything worked as it should and I now have a nice little portable computer for tasks around the house when I don't want to sit in front of my desk. I set up OpenVPN and got that working in the simple mode after a little bit of toying around. Cool deal.

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2005 -

Speakeasy DSL

So I finally got myself some DSL... it has been a few years. Recently I have used a "borrowed" wireless connection, Verizon EVDO, and a cable modem and now I am back on with the nice low-latency DSL. I have a 6mb/768k connection from Speakeasy and so far it rocks, although due to some line noise I don't get the full 6, more like 4.8 or so. Last night I set up the server that is supposed to be my mythTV system as a firewall because for some reason the other 2 systems I had wouldn't POST, I think it has something to do with the power outages we had a few months ago, but they were old systems anyhow, and I have bid on a couple old cheap systems on ebay that will work just fine for the job. I set up the firewall using pf on FreeBSD, with a separate interface for the wireless bridge (which is a bridge to nowhere if you don't connect to the VPN). Everything is working great and I finally have my Vonage box active again, yay.

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2005 -

<del>Backpack</del>Lounging in Catalina

Penelope and I had planned on going backpacking this weekend on Catalina Island this weekend, but when we got there the town of Avalon was so beautiful we just decided to get a hotel room and hang out. The other problem was that the route I had planned ended up being on a paved road and our campground was a bit further then we wanted to hike in one day with heavy packs, plus I was midway through a cold, which I have just now kicked.

We checked in to the Hotel Villa Portofino, a hotel right across the main drag from the water, dropped off out bags and hit the bar. We had a few drinks and then we decided to rent a golf cart and take it around Avalon, which despite sounding cheesy was actually quite fun. After the golf cart ride we bought some tickets to see Harry Potter in the Casino which isn't actually a gambling hall, the italian word casino actually meant a place of entertainment, back when the building was built by Mr Wrigley.

The Casino is amazingly beautiful and before the movie we were treated to 45 minutes of organ music on a really grand organ, a type of which only 3 exist in the world today. The bass and acoustics of the theatre are really amazing and we really enjoyed both the organ show and the movie.

The next day we hiked over to the botanical gardens and the Wrigley monument and then we headed back in to town to take part in tour of the casino which was really interesting. I took a whole bunch of photos of the whole trip and I will be uploading them soon once I am a bit less busy.

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2005 -

Many Gigabytes of Photos

Over the past couple of months I have posted only a very small handful of photos on my website. There are a couple of reason for this. First of all I had some disk problems with my server and lost a whole bunch of photos from the site... I didn't really lose the actual photos, I will just have to upload them again. The next problem is that I have had somewhat spotty connectivity at my loft, but this will be remedied on the 16th when Speakeasy installs my 6M/786k DSL, Yay! And finally I have been completely rewriting the code the runs my site, to make it better, faster and easier to use. I am very close to being done with the rewrite and once I am I will start the transition from the current slacker based system to the new dynamony system. Once I upgrade I have something like 10 gigs of photos to sort through and upload.

Monday, November 14th, 2005 -

Downtown ArtRide

A couple of days ago I decided that I really wanted to actually make it to all the galleries on the Downtown Art Walk, but since I only had a limited amount of time that I can spend traipsing about I decided to make the rounds by bike. I posted up about this on and Eric Richardson showed interest in the whole idea and decided to come with me. During the day Thursday I was very busy, but luckily Eric had time to plan a route and print out some maps. Using his route I was able to hit every single gallery on the Art Walk and take pictures in those that allowed it (which was almost everywhere). The only 2 spots I didn't hit were MOCA on Grand and the LAPL. I have set up a mailing list for the ArtRide, which I will be doing every month with the Art Walk. If you are interested you can sign up to the list here.

Friday, November 11th, 2005 -

Let the RFID Hacking Begin

Now that money is involved it will only be a short amount of time before RFIDs are blown wide open as the next huge security problem. All you have to do is excite the card with the right radio freqs and pick up the response and you're in. Record it, replay it and you have pwn3d the money.

Tuesday, November 8th, 2005 -

New Meade Truss-Tube Dobsonian Telecopes

The new relatively-low-priced-for-a-10"-truss-dobsonian Meade LightBridge makes me really want to upgrade my sad little 3" refractor. The truss breaks down so you can fit it in your car trunk. And you can pre-order it for around $649 for the standard edition or $750 for the deluxe one and for another $99 your can get a collection of Super Plossl lenses and a 2x Barlow lens.

Friday, November 4th, 2005 -


I did some research about how to best train for fixed gear riding and I found this great page giving some exercises that you can do to strengthen you legs for the rigors of coaster-less travel. I also researched spinning and found out that spinning bikes are fixed gear stationary cycles so they are perfect for fixie training. So today at gym, Penelope and I spun for 20 minutes doing the Arc Drills, it was a good workout and afterwards I did my resistance training which is always fun. Working out really makes my days better.

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2005 -


So I just spent about 15 minutes writing the first few paragraphs of my first ever novel. You can read what I have so far here on my nanowrimo page. I will be writing every day and posting up what I have, be warned the copy has not been edited yet. Thanks to Robert Daeley for inspiring me to do this!

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2005 -


I finished watching the entire Densha Otoko series in the last couple of days and I really enjoyed it, although at some times it was definitely cheesy and overly dramatic. The show was based on a real story of an anime obsessed nerd (otaku) who's chivalry, albeit with shaking knees, saves a woman on a train from a drunken old pervert. She thanks him and asks for his address which he gives her and then he turns to a highly popular japanese message board for advice on what to do. The ensuing 10 episodes follow the young nerd as he is transformed from a geek rife with Ota reek, into a dashing and bumbling hero who wins the heart and hand of a "normal" woman.

About half way through the series he decides to part with his Otaku ways and become a "normal" person, which I thought didn't quite give a healthy message to people (you must have no personal identity!), but towards the end he realizes that he will always be an Otaku and hopes that his love will accept him for who he is, which she does.

I especially like the parts when he is conversing on the BBS in which he interacts with hundreds of people throughout japan and abroad including one of my favorite jp tv personalities Nasubi.

The show gives an interesting look into how the japanese public feel about nerdy people and how they are really shunned by society. It is interesting how nerds are treated differently in the US and how nerds have become somewhat cool in the last 10 years here. Here is a link to the bittorrent of the series (complete with english subtitles) if you are interested in checking it out. I guess there is also a movie out there somewhere which I'll have to check out as well.

Tuesday, November 1st, 2005 -


This weekend I left BitTorrent running downloading the japanese television show Densha Otoko which I have written about before here. I was hoping it would have english subtitles, which it does. I will be reviewing the episodes as I find time to watch them. =]

Monday, October 31st, 2005 -

The Producers

I was wasting some time watching trailers over on the apple trailer site and the remake of Mel Brooks The Producers looks hilarious and brilliant, starring Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick, Uma Therman and Will Ferrel. Ferrel plays the crazy Hitler loving playwright who pens the centerpiece of the movie, a play called Springtime for Hitler. I can't wait for this one to come out.

Another movie that looks pretty good, and also starring Will Ferrel (or his voice anyway) is Curious George, which involves everybody's favorite monkey and a huge dose of curiosity induced hijinx.

Saturday, October 29th, 2005 -

Bike Mania

I can tell Green LA girl is right on the verge of buying a bike. I will give her some more motivation here: Yesterday I bought Penelope a vintage Schwin girls road bike from the '60s or '70s for a whopping $15. I don't know if she is going to like it or not due to the rust that covers most all of the components, but the frame is pretty much rust free so we have a good place to start! In the next couple of days I am going to take Penelope and the bike down to the Bicycle Kitchen and start converting it into a fixed speed lean mean road machine. Eventually I will send Penelope on her own to Bitchen, which is the girls only night that BK does, but I want to help her with the first few steps.

I think Penelope is going to kick my ass because I also bought another bike via ebay for $36 although this one is an antique single speed. I am not sure if it is legit as the seller has no feedback, but we'll see... I'm going to pick it up in person.

In other news I just noticed that BK has a blog called the Bici Blog.

Saturday, October 29th, 2005 -

After Midnight Ride

Last night I went to Club Respect, but for some reason I also brought my bike and as soon as I got there I really just wanted to ride it home and see Penelope so I hopped on and rode the 6 miles home. Here is the route I took. It had some good uphill but nothing to serious. Fun Stuff

Friday, October 28th, 2005 -


So the other night I mentioned that Penelope and I went to IKEA and picked up some home furnishing items of which included a floor lamp. The lamp we bought is made primarily of brushed stainless steel with a frosted glass globe shade. The lamp contains a 35 Watt halogen lamp and a set of 4 computer controlled LEDs that fade through most of the visible spectrum and can be locked on one color. I think it would be pretty cool to mod this thing to light a certain color via 802.11. I can't seem to find the lamp which is also available as a desk lamp on ikea's website.

Update I found the manual for the LED Lamp an it is called the MÅNSKEN.

Wednesday, October 26th, 2005 -

Advertise on

Last month my site had over 100,000 visits from over 22,000 different people and a total of over 1.2 million hits. You can run an add that runs right over there to the right of this text for $20 a week. Click here to buy an add.

Wednesday, October 26th, 2005 -

Why I am pissed at Courier-IMAP

So for a few years I have been running a combination of Qmail, Courier-IMAP and Vmailmgr to allow for multiple virtual domains with many users without having to add each user to the system. I was doing some upgrading last night and I found out that the fine folks over at Courier have changed they way their authdaemon system works so that it is now incompatible with vmailmgr. Here is what they have to say about it:

I can only see the following minuses from losing the non-daemonized configuration. I believe the minuses are greatly outranked by the pluses.

There are some third party configuration libraries that only work in a non-daemonized configuration. I'm aware of one such library, vmailmgr. Unless it's been updated to work in daemonized mode, it will no longer work.

Great! So I just had to downgrade my upgrade of courier-imap. I am going to change my whole system soon and stop using vmailmgr and possible even qmail too. We'll see what happens.

Tuesday, October 25th, 2005 -

Fixed Gear Gallery and Questions

So I sent photos of my fixie to fixed gear gallery and they posted them up along with my write up. When I woke up this morning I had a couple of emails asking me questions:

On Oct 25, 2005, at 11:07 AM, Pax wrote:

i have the same frame, but dont know how to get the shift lever mounts off. any help? also, what ratio?

Ok let me see if I can remember how I did this.

  1. unscrew the levers.
  2. I think I pried up the little plastic ring with my finger nail and then just turned it. One side is fixed and one side is like a nut.
  3. After you remove one side the other will just come out after you jiggle it a little.


  • Chainring: 42 teeth
  • Cog: 14 teeth
  • 78.8 gear inches

On Oct 25, 2005, at 10:46 AM, Claes Axang wrote:

I saw you bike at (very nice by the way) and read that you had used a half link. I am currently building on a old reynold's 531 road frame with horizontal drop-outs so that shouldn't cause any problems but I have been thinking aboout converting my old kona kilauea mountainbike to my everyday fixie. The kona has more or less vertical dropouts so I have been told that the only way to go is the white industries ENO hub but I don't feel that I want to spend that much money on a hub so maybe the half link solution could be the thing for me. How do you construct a half link and if you would have time some day could you send me a picture of what it looks like? Any help would much appreciated.

The thing about the half link is that it may or may not work. You really have to try to know, you might not even need a half link depending on your bike's geometry. The half link just allows you to shorten the chain by half a link. It looks like a short link in a chain, but instead of a pin it has a screw and a flat square nut. It cost me $10 from the bicycle kitchen, I'm sure you could find one online. Sheldon Brown has a shot of a half link here on is great website.

Tuesday, October 25th, 2005 -

Congratulations Penelope!

I forgot to mention it, but my lovely and radiantly beautiful fiance Penelope just got a new job at an upscale fine dining establishment on the top floor of a skyscraper in Downtown LA. She has worked for the same restaurant for 6 years and although she is very sad to go, it just didn't make sense for her to commute to Long Beach every day. Her new job pays almost triple what her old one did and her coworkers are much closer to her age if not older, the opposite of what they were at the old job. She doesn't plan to work at a restaurant forever, she has a degree in public health education, and has been accepted to nursing school which she will attend in about a year. Good job baby!

Monday, October 24th, 2005 -

The Fixie is Done!

Check out the write up here on Check out the photos here.

Update I went for my first short ride on Sunday to go buy a mini kryptonite lock. It was a hoot although I almost crashed into the back of a line of cars, thinking I could slow down fast enough by backpedalling. I swerved and went around and everything turned out ok.

Saturday, October 22nd, 2005 -

Fixed Gear Bike Project

Ok so today I went and picked up 2 bikes from a nice fellow in West Covina named Amer who's bikes had been sitting in his garage for at least 10 years. He wanted $200 for the Cannondale and $80 for the KHS and I talked him down to $174 for both of them. I think I got a pretty good deal and I really like the Cannondale, but it may or may not be the best conversion bike because of the near vertical rear dropouts.

After picking up the bikes and buying some spokes, lights, a helmet and a pump at a bike shop Eagle Rock called Discount Cycles I headed over to the Bicycle Kitchen for my 7:00 wheel building class. Bicycle Kitchen is completely and totally awesome and the people who work there are really cool and down to earth. They taught me step by step how to build a wheel and I built 2 in about 4 hours.

I am really happy with my work although the front wheel still needs a bit of truing. I took a few breaks from tweaking spokes and nipples to take off all the parts from the Cannondale that I won't be needing anymore like the derailers, the rear brakes, all the cabling except for the front break and the old rusty chain. I also bought all the other parts I will need to finish the rebuild. I have scheduled rack time tomorrow and I will hopefully have a rideable bike some time in the afternoon. I'll take some photos of the finished product.

Friday, October 21st, 2005 -

My First Fixie

Ok so I really want a bike. I used have a mountain bike and I rode all the time in High School. I now live in the city and I don't think I need a mountain bike at all any more and I really want to build my own fixed gear street bike. I know there is some sort of bike workshop thing in LA, but I can't seem to find a link to info about it. Anybody have any suggestions on where to begin? Comment here or email bike [at] eecue [dot] com. =]

UpdateEric Richardson sent me an email and reminded me that I was looking for the Bicycle Kitchen. I also found thesegreatsites that have a wealth of info about fixed gear bikes.

Update 2 Ok so I just got off the phone with Brian from Bicycle Kitchen and there is room in the wheel building class tomorrow and they even have rims and hubs I can buy for my fixed gear project bike... I just have to pick up 72 291mm spokes and I will be set to go! Oh yeah and I'll need to get a bike too, but finding and old junky 10 speed shouldn't be a problem. Cool.

Thursday, October 20th, 2005 -

Blogads first ad...

So as you can see over to the right of this post I have my first blogad. It seems pretty relevant as I live in a loft and write about loft living several times a week. It's funny because if you look at my stats on the blogads website it only shows that I get 1700 hits a week (mostly because the counter has only been on there for a couple of days) but in reality I get about 5000 visits DAILY from 2000 different sites... I assume about half of those are RSS or search engines that don't load the blogad code, but it will be interesting so see how many I get at the end of one week according to blogads.

Thursday, October 20th, 2005 -

Brick Photos

Here are some photos of one of the bricks there were thrown from the roof of the Alexandria Hotel the other night. I know they're not that great, but hey I have programming to do! I have about a 1387 photos to sort through from the last few months as I have been busy writing the new version of the software that powers this site. I wanted to wait till it was done before adding any more photos, but oh well!

Wednesday, October 19th, 2005 -

Server Upgrade

I just swapped out the two failing 80gb drives that were in this server for 2 brand new 160gb drives. It took about 3 hours to transfer the data and now everything appears to be up and running ok. The second drive will be a daily backup of the main drive. In the next few days I will also be upgrading the database server. Enjoy!

[It's a good thing the server is back up because while it was down, 44 spam emails were waiting for me!]

Wednesday, October 19th, 2005 -


You can now buy advertising on this site by following the link at the right. The prices are very reasonable and the site gets about 5000 unique visitors a day.

Monday, October 17th, 2005 -

Palm to get Blackberry Email

I have been using a RIM Blackberry 7100t for the past couple of months and I like it, but what I really want is a Treo. I have grown fond of the excellent messaging capabilities of the Blackberry and it is good news to hear that RIM and Palm have struck a deal to use the BB email client on the Palm. Cool Deal!

Sunday, October 16th, 2005 -

Pave the Earth, starting with Griffith Park

As anyone who lives in Los Angeles knows, trees are terrible awful things that we as a city have the G-d given right duty to cut down, smash up, tear out and burn down. And if I may say so, it is about fucking time that our city hall has taken the great initiative to reduce the horrid oxygen producing scourge that are trees which have scarred the great park of Griffith for so many years. Not only has the park experience been lessened over the years by the unchecked breeding of these rooted vermin, but a dearth of pavement has prevented both the young and old from feeling the great comfort only tarmac can bring to the human stride...

Read the rest here on

Tuesday, October 11th, 2005 -

Data Loss

So I've lost a large portion of my photos from this site. I still have them in a backup somewhere and hopefully I have a backup of the actual files from this site... I will work on finding that backup but be warned that the whole section may come down and I may have to reload them all from my desktop. Joy.

Saturday, October 8th, 2005 -

Major changes / dynamony

So as you may or may not know, I have been recoding slacker from scratch. Slacker is the software that, along with phpreactor, powers all my sites including this one and junglescene. The whole thing is written in procedural php and the new rewrite which I have named dynamony, is completely object oriented. So far I have rewritten nearly every component of the backend system: the db abstraction class; the "slacker" base class which is a class that allows one to add/edit/update/delete from a database and provides the forms to do so along with limiting, sorting, searching by words or date; the blog class; the album class in which i used a much better tree algorithm that avoids the memory/processor intensive recursion i had used in the past; the ACL class; using Pear::Log for all error and debug logging; a comment class; a category class; a frontend controller system that loads requested classes after checking the ACLs; the signup class; image output class; the login/logout classes; the image class; the gallery remote class; the xmlrpc class; the dynamony class which allows me to create new classes within the web application instead of through a separate website; and today I created the forum class where I have seen my greatest decrease in load time nearly 10x faster than how the forums currently load (i tested it with several hundred thousand posts from

The whole thing is really going to be leaps and bounds better than what I have now and going over my old code is really embarrassing. The amount of reused code was insane and made upkeep nearly impossible for one site let alone the dozens of sites that slacker powers. So far all the data is completely separated from the html/xml/csv that it will parsed using... I just use arrays of data and printr() as my current output method which works great for prototyping. I have decided to completely program the backend before I even start any of the output classes. One important thing to me is to create rewrite rules and functions that will take the old links to content and forward them to the new content as not to break the thousands of links out there... It's a big project but once it is all done it will make my life so much easier.

Tuesday, October 4th, 2005 -

Support Cosmo Brown

One of the artists on my roster is running in the Honolulu AIDS marathon and needs your support... Here is the email he sent me:

Thursday, September 29th, 2005 -

Nasubi and Densha Otoko

The other day in my post about reality show deaths I mentioned the Japanese TV personality Nasubi who was basically kidnapped and locked in a room for a year without any clothes, money or food with his only means of survival being giveaway forms. Well I wanted to know what he was up to now so I emailed Ed Jacob who runs the site that had the Nasubi info on it and he told me he was in a Japanese TV Drama called Densha Otoko which actually sounds pretty cool. The show is about a shut in nerd from the Akihabara District of Tokyo who saves a woman on a train from being accosted by a drunk and in return she takes down his address, which is a first for the man who has never had a girlfriend his whole life. The story actually happened in real life and the otaku, Tsuyoshi Yamada, didn't know what to do so he posts his quandary to a huge internet discussion board and millions of people follow his courtship of the woman. It is actually pretty touching in a nerdy kind of way. Nasubi just has a cameo appearance in the show which is also a movie. I may have to download a few episodes and check it out.

Thursday, September 29th, 2005 -

No Organic Express for Me!

I am sad because after reading about Organic Express on this cool and environmentally conscious LA blog, I rushed over to the Organic Express website and tried to sign up, but lo and behold they don't deliver to my area.

UPDATE: So I heard back from a Organic Express rep and they totally copped out saying they only deliver to residential neighborhoods and we all know that nobody lives downtown:

Monday, September 26th, 2005 -

Hundreds of Swallows

As I sit at my desk programming away I just saw a veritable swarm of swallows fluttering about the downtown sky in a somewhat chaotic cloud. The don't seem to be migrating as they are flying every which way with not apparent direction of travel. Very strange... I don't think I've ever even seen a swallow in downtown LA.

Saturday, September 24th, 2005 -

Solo Workout

I'm probably going to sound a bit codependent here, but today was my first solo workout at the gym. For the past month or so I've been working out at least 3 times a week with Penelope, mostly at the Ketchum YMCA gym that we belong to, but today Penelope had to go visit her mom and then go to work so she didn't have time to work out with me. It was still a good workout, but I admit I do enjoy her company when I am at the gym and I missed her today. At the Y today they are re-flooring the weight room so all the super cool computer connected resistance machines were not accessible so I used the machines that are in the Curves style circuit training machines that normally have the annoying woman's voice that prompts you to "MOVE TO THE NEXT STATION," which, thankfully, was not turned on today. I am especially proud of myself because each time I workout I have been adding 5 minutes on to my cardio training on the LifeFitness Arctrainer in Hill Interval mode and today I did 55 minutes on it. Anyway time to jump in the shower and then get back to my weekend programming project which is the next iteration of my open source project slacker that I have completely rewritten to be object oriented and which I have renamed Dynamony.

Saturday, September 24th, 2005 -

Teaching about the Bible in School

When I was growing up we learned about the Bible at Sunday School (actually it was called Hebrew school, but you get the idea). I am a firm believer in the separation between church and state and I think all this hoopla about a new textbook that will teach about the bible and its religious implications in school is not only unneeded but will alienate people who's religion is not based on the bible. From the AP article there is no mention of any other holy books like the Koran, the Bhagavad Gita, the Tao-te-ching, the Upanishads or the Veda. If I was a Hindu, Muslim, a Taoist or anything other than a Christian or a Jew I would feel pretty left out.

Thursday, September 22nd, 2005 -


I have always loved malt-o-meal and for the last few weeks I have been enjoying it several days a week thanks to Penelope's wonderful breakfast cooking skills. She even introduced a new way of eating it to me, Savory style with butter, fresh ground pepper and salt. Mmm good stuff!

Thursday, September 22nd, 2005 -


I have always loved malt-o-meal and for the last few weeks I have been enjoying it several days a week thanks to Penelope's wonderful breakfast cooking skills. She even introduced a new way of eating it to me, Savory style with butter, fresh ground pepper and salt. Mmm good stuff!

Thursday, September 22nd, 2005 -

Penelope is posting up a storm!

My sweet lovely and beautiful fiance has been posting like a mad woman today over on her blog. Stop by and read her reviews about various local eateries along with some trip reports from the zoo and the gym.

Wednesday, September 21st, 2005 -

My Guilty Pleasure

So normally I talk nothing but bad about television and although I do own one I have never bothered to hook it up to any broadcast connection or cable. I use it primarily to watch DVDs and that's about it. There is pretty much only one time when I watch TV and that is at the gym. If you work out on the third level of the Downtown YMCA you can watch one of the four televisions that are hanging from the ceilings, the one I like is always tuned to CNN and is in front of one of my favorite cardio machines the LifeFitness ArcTrainer today I spent 50 minutes on that thing watching CNN... I felt all slimy afterwards, but I think that was mostly from the sweat.

Wednesday, September 21st, 2005 -

An Issue with Tiger Mail

Here is a message I have posted to the Apple support page:

Recently I have decided to simplify my email life and in doing so I have for one thing stopped my subscriptions to the hundreds of security and programming related mailing lists I once subbed. Doing this allowed me to get rid of the hundred or so folders I had called "FreeBSD security" and whatnot and I have created one folder called "Old Mail" and several sub folders called "2004", "2003" and so on. This has worked very well for me as I no longer need folders to keep things sorted out and I can Spotlight whatever I am looking for.


The mail I have placed into my "Old Mail" folder only shows up on the system that I have archived it on... When I go home I only see the archived mail from earlier that morning before I went to work and vice versa. I am using IMAP and I have verified that the email DOES EXIST on the server which is a good thing. I have tried the "Synchronize" function and it does nothing to solve my problem. I am not too worried as I know my email does at least exist on the server, but it is very annoying to only have access to half of my archived messages at any given time.

So what should I do?

I'll keep this page updated as to what happens.

UPDATE I had to take the link off of here because apple's stupid discussion board website isn't smart enough to convert "&" to the non-XHTML compliant & character which it needs to be able to do in order to allow people who care about being XHTML 1.0 Strict compliant (like me) to post a link to their board from a website.

Tuesday, September 20th, 2005 -

Apple Weather Widget

I just looked at my Apple Weather Widget has a really cool rain graphic on it that spills down from the top and is raining on the rest of the widget... Apple design is amazing I tell you.

Tuesday, September 20th, 2005 -

Mobile Homes?

I just heard on the radio that the government is planning on buying 300,000 mobiles home for around a billion dollars to house the million or so homeless people from Katrina. This has to be the most twisted and backwards thing I have ever heard... let's do some math here. If we house all of the people who are now homeless in motor homes spending 1 billion of the 200 billion of the relief fund that leaves us with 199 billion dollars to spend on demolishing all the old homes of the poor and creating nice condos for the rich built by Haliburton. I am also greatly troubled about what the money is going to come from. I have a feeling that any and every social program still left intact in our government will be dismantled to pay for this instead of stopping the tax breaks for the rich that will cost our country 1.6 trillion in the next 10 years.

Monday, September 19th, 2005 -

Inka Pen

I just picked up an Inka Pen via a pro deal for our Search and Rescue team and so far I am really happy with it. The pen fits inside its own case and can be used quickly in the short version or converted to a full size pen with nice weight and balance. It also has a built in PDA stylus. The pen is pressurized like the space pens so that it will write upside down, in water etc. I like it so much I want to order another one and it looks like they are coming out with a titanium version in a few months!

Tuesday, September 13th, 2005 -

Juice Free LA

The power went out in Downtown LA about an hour ago. I was right about to get on the elevator in my building when I decided instead to go back and give my fiance a hug and kiss goodbye and when I walked back to the elevator the power went off. It took about 10 seconds before the emergency generator in our building kicked in, but when it did, the hallway lights came back on and one of the elevators powered up (although not the one I almost got in). When I went down to the street it was in chaos as all the stop lights were turned off and people were being stupid and running lights and pedestrians were just walking across the street with abandon. Luckily my servers in Downtown are all on generator power so my sites are still up for now.

Penelope and I had to leave to go to work and the parking attendants broke the gate open so we could get out of the parking structure. The drive out of the city was a bit dangerous due to the lack of stop lights. On the way out I listened to several public radio stations which for the most part stuck to their normal programming and didn't have any news about the power outage until about 1:45 and even then the coverage was very limited so I switched over to AM and KNX 1070 had nonstop detailed coverage of the outage, which I am now listening to here in OC. LAtimes has some info about the outage.

UPDATE: I just got word that power is back on in Downtown and possibly the whole city.

Monday, September 12th, 2005 -

Annoying SSH Scans...

Not that they are going to guess any of my passwords with this scanning (as I use difficult, non english, symbol filled passwords) but it still pisses me off:

Saturday, September 10th, 2005 -

Downtown Art Walk Today

Jim just reminded me through his blog that today is the Art Walk. I am working from home today so I get to go check it out! Photo time! Also after the walk is the LAVoice party. Fun times.

Thursday, September 8th, 2005 -

Art Murmur Reception

The Art Murmur Gallery in my building is having a reception this Saturday the 10th for the new show iPop which starts at 10pm. I will be on a Search and Rescue 24 hour pack and minimal rescue training. The training on San Jacinto, involves staying overnight with just what we bring out in our 24 hour packs (no sleeping bags / tents) and rigging a rescue raise and lower using only our personal callout ropes and climbing gear. Anyway go check out the opening!

Thursday, September 8th, 2005 -

Portable Storage...

So I've been thinking about getting some kind of portable storage to I can carry around various file with me. I had a little 64meg flash drive that just recently stopped working and now I see the new iPod Nano came out. The thing is pretty amazing and wonderfully small and I really want one! Not sure if I need one, but I do want one!

Thursday, September 8th, 2005 -


My friend will be having an exhibition of his SkullPhone art on October 15th. I will post more details about the show when I have them, but keep that day open if you are in to skulls with cell phones.

Wednesday, September 7th, 2005 -

Disaster Preparedness

Are you ready for a disaster? Do you have what you need to make it through "The Big One," assuming you aren't crushed by some large piece of your residence? Even before Katrina I had been asking my fiance and myself those questions. For the last few months my survival pack of goodies has been at my mom's house in Yucca Valley, but this weekend Penelope and I grabbed them from my truck in the desert and brought them home to our loft. I now have enough MRE's and water stored here to last Penelope and I at least a week along with batteries, flashlights, radios, plus plenty of guns and ammo all the disaster necessities. All my Search and Rescue gear including my alpine gear, climbing gear and backpacking gear is down stairs in our storage unit. Now Penelope and I just need to create a disaster response plan.

Wednesday, September 7th, 2005 -

Organic to Go

Every time I walk to the gym (every other day) I have been tempted to stop by the new healthy sandwich bar called Organic to Go which I think is on the ground floor of the Library Tower. I didn't realize it was a chain from Seattle. Here is a quote from the press release:

Wednesday, September 7th, 2005 -

Hands on Moleskin in Downtown LA?

Anybody know where I could check out some Moleskin notebooks in or near Downtown LA? I want to pick one up for taking notes on the run but I'm not sure where to go. Thanks!

Sunday, September 4th, 2005 -


So yesterday I got my new BlackBerry 7100t in the mail after winning it on ebay for $135. I bought the missing sync program for it from PocketMac and got it all synced up.... sort of .... PocketMac's software didn't sync any of my calendar items. That was the first in a series of problems I have had with the 7100t. The next problem was that although it is supposed to support IMAP it really doesn't... you just get sent a copy of all your mail. When you read your mail on your Blackberry it doesn't appear as read in your inbox... same with sending and deleting. It also doesn't support IMAP folders and only checks your email every 15 minutes. The next problem came when I recieved a new email from my fiance and tried to read it but instead deleted it... the delete key is right on top of the enter key and are both pretty small. Once you delete a message it is gone forever... no trash can. The next problem is that the screen sucks in the sun despite what the product description on Blackberry's site says. And maybe I just haven't learned all the shortcuts yet but it is extremely unwieldy to get around the different menus from phone to IM to mail... lame. Bluetooth also only works for headset and hands free... no serial no syncing. I don't know how long I will keep this thing, but I am thinking the TREO 650 is the way to go.


Ok so i've RTFM and checked some shortcut lists and I have found there are easy ways to get around the bb... I'll keep delving deeper into this phone. I really want to like it, I swear!

Friday, September 2nd, 2005 -

SAR OES Callout for New Orleans...

Looks like I may be going to help with the rescue efforts in Louisiana. The details are a bit sketchy from the email I just recieved from the team commander:

Wednesday, August 31st, 2005 -

Help Heart Health with your Bike

I don't have a bike, although I used to mountain bike all the time and I would love to have a nice new mountain bike, but not as much as I want a street bike! Anyway there is a cool downtown 14.5 ride to benefit the American Heart Association on Sunday September 18th. If you're in Downtown LA and have a bike (eric) you should totally go check this out! You can register here by clicking on the button that says "I will be participating in the Bike ride to the Walk."

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005 -

6 hours of sleep

During my adult life, I have alternated between getting way too little sleep (<4 hours) and way too much sleep (>8 hours). Call me strange but I have noticed that if I get sleep in 2 hour blocks, like 4 hours, 6 hours, 8 hours I feel well rested and refreshed, but if I sleep an odd number of hours I feel like I'm being robbed of sleep. I'm not sure if this is a mental thing or if it is my body's biological clock telling me to feel rested. Anyway, I've decided that 6 hours of sleep is the perfect amount for me to feel well rested and also to allow me to get more done in the day. I have been trying it out and it really does make me feel good and I don't even need to set my alarm as I tend to just wake up after sleeping 6 hours. Another nice benefit is that at night I actually feel tired when it is time to go to bed.

Tuesday, August 30th, 2005 -


I just got in to GTD last week, my book hasn't even arrived yet via Amazon but I have read dozens of web pages about the process and I have my @action lists / projects / goals etc and it works great... put a whole bunch of tasks in to my dead and done file so far in the last few days.

My next step is to create a nice php/mysql interface that will sync with the text lists on my home/work desktops and my blackberry (which is on its way). So far I am using a combination of tar, openssl and scp to keep my lists synced, archived and encrypted. Fun stuff!

Monday, August 29th, 2005 -

When I moved back to LA after living in OC for a year I hit up two of the local LA group blogs and asked if they needed or wanted any writers. Sean from was the first to get back to me and let me know that the site was currently maxed out as far as writers went and to get back to him later to see if anything opened up. A few weeks later Jason Toney emailed me and let me know that there was room on LAist for writers and so I wrote a handful of articles for them. A few weeks ago I checked back with Sean and he informed me that a couple of spots had opened up on, and as that was the group blog I had originally wanted to write for I retired from LAist and moved on over to So after finally getting my bio together I am now writing for My first post about the Chinese Food Festival is here.

Sunday, August 28th, 2005 -

Chinese Food Festival

Today after going for a run in Griffith Park and visiting out favorite baby sifaka at the LA Zoo, Penelope and I met up with Jim and Shannon at Union Station and then walked over to New Chinatown to partake in some serious Chinese food sampling, with some soul food and Seoul food thrown in for good measure. Jim took some photos of the festival which can be found in his flickr pool. I am uploading the photos I took now, but it is going a bit slow as I am just borrowing my neighbors internet connection, thanks neighbor! My photos for the most part can be found here.

Sunday, August 28th, 2005 -

YMCA and Fitlinxx

Today Penelope and I walked a few blocks to the Civic Center to hit the YMCA and meet with our trainers to get set up on the FitLinxx system. Fitlinxx keeps track of your workout routine and lets you track your progress online. All the weight machines and most of the cardio machines are linked up to the network. It is pretty high tech and is included with the membership fee. I am going to be working out at least 3 days a week and doing 30 minutes of cardio and my sets of resistance training. Fun stuff!

Thursday, August 25th, 2005 -

Sarcasm Detector Malfunction!

Looks like some woman named Amanda doesn't quite understand the whole humor thing and was totally offended by Sean's minpin page where he talks about how minpins eat cars and people. Then to top it all off she posted this on an unrelated post on his blog: "what a total moron!!! I'm glad you had a good laugh you also gave all my friends one with your stupidity!!! Have fun pissing people off!!!!" classic!

Thursday, August 25th, 2005 -

Streamlining my life...

So I read this article over on Robert Daeley's blog about making your desktop more sensible, toned down and work oriented. I am taking some of his advice about hiding notifications / the dock and toning down the color scheme on my desktop as well as trying out quicksilver [quicksilver totally rocks!]. I don't really like the idea of one huge text file for a number of reasons and as I am currently converting my CMS system slacker to be object oriented I am going to expand the features I already have to be my PIM, task manager, goal watcher, notes, etc all trackable with RSS feeds and editable with XML-RPC. It will include a backup dumping utility that will create encrypted text files that I can put in various places. I have written most all of the code for this in the last few years and I am looking forward to objectifying it! I am even considering upgrading to PHP5 to make use of the expanded object functionality.

Thursday, August 25th, 2005 -

Desktop changeup

I have been using a 1Ghz titanium powerbook (2nd or 3rd gen) for the past couple of years for my "desktop" at home and about 6 months ago the screen went on the fritz. The system is still covered by an Apple Care warranty so I am sending it in for repair. While I am without my laptop I have a loaner system... Dual G4 866Mhz. It is pretty cool except for the fact that I can't use my Verizon EVDO card with it, although I did by a PCI to PCMCIA adapter that doesn't work. Right now I am borrowing one of the many open wireless signals in my building. At first I was just browsing normally and it was quite slow, thinking it was my ssh tunnel and proxy server I checked my settings and low and behold I wasn't using my proxy/ tunnel... oops! I turned it on and it is actually much faster now. Go figure.

Thursday, August 25th, 2005 -

Old Books...

I am currently buying old books on ebay that (mostly) are in the public domain. These books are about Los Angeles. Thisshould be interesting. They come with maps... the mashup possibilities get ever cooler!

Wednesday, August 24th, 2005 -

YMCA, Downtown Farmers Market and Saisai

Penelope and I joined the best gym in Downtown LA today, the YMCA. The place is really amazing, with a pool, a full wood floored basketball court, tons of cardio machines, tons of weight machines, free classes, racquetball courts, a padded track, sauna and steam rooms, and a great view. It is only 3 blocks away from out loft and compared to the other gyms in downtown it is very affordable and has better hours. We worked out for a short 30 minutes today, starting on the elliptical machines, then moving on to the stair machines with the actual moving staircase and then spent 15 minutes running around the padded track and then sprinting the last lap. Next time (tomorrow) we will do strength training after our 30 minutes of cardio.

After the workout we headed over to the Downtown Farmers market on 5th street between Flower and Olive (I think). The market was packed with people from both the neighborhood and the local businesses. The stands sold everything from clothing to the usual staples of organic veggies and fresh baked goods. We ran in to Gary Leonard, the Downtown LA News photographer, who I had previously met at the Is California Governable talk. The market is really quite expansive and puts the Silverlake Farmers Market to shame.

On our way back we stopped for lunch at Saisai, the sushi bar located in the Biltmore Hotel and we each tried one of the lunch specials which had hearty portions, delicious fresh fish and beautifully presentations. I look forward to going back for dinner some time in the future. Penelope and I are considering having our wedding and reception there

Wednesday, August 24th, 2005 -


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activation-functions  ai  ai-ml  album-names  alexnet  alphago  anomaly-detection  antennas  apple  apple-news  apple-photos  art-center-college-of-design  artificial-intelligence  attention-mechanisms  autoencoders  autonomous-vehicles  autonomous-weapons  backpropagation  bert  big-data  black-hat-2007  blog-series  blogging  books  california  california-academy-of-sciences  canon-r6-mark-ii  canon-rf-2470mm-f-2-8-l-is-usm-lens  caption-generation  caves  celebrity-detection  chatgpt  chemistry  cnn  cnns  communication-with-interplanetary-spacecrafts  computer-vision  convolutional-layers  convolutional-neural-networks  crowdrise  data-denoising  data-extraction  data-privacy  decision-trees  decoder  deep-learning  deep-space-network--dsn-  denoising-autoencoders  dimensionality-reduction  disneyland  drum--n--bass  eecue  embeddings  encoder  engineering-leader  ensemble-learning  ethical-dilemmas  ethics  face-detection  facial-recognition  family  family-trips  feature-extraction  feedforward-neural-networks  fireworks  fnns  food  fully-connected-layers  gans  geeks  general  generative-models  gofundme  golden-gate-park  goldstone-deep-space-communications-complex  gpt  gpt3  gpus  gradient-descent  gru  gtd  ham-radio  hardware-accelerators  health  healthcare  hidden-states  history  image-analysis  image-classification  image-generation  image-keywords  image-processing  image-recognition  imagenet  innovation  interplanetary-spacecrafts  ios  ipad  iphone  japan  koreatown  large-language-models  latent-space  layers  led  lemos-farm  links  llm  locations  los-angeles  loss-functions  lstm  machine-learning  messagepack  military  ml-keyword-detection  ml-photo-scores  mlps  multilayer-perceptrons  music  nasa-jet-propulsion-laboratory--jpl-  natural-language-processing  navwar  neural-networks  neurons  new-mexico  nuclear  object-detection  openai  osxphotos  outdoors  overfitting  parallel-computing  photo-management  photo-sharing  photography  photos  photos-app  pirates  politics  pooling-layers  pyrotechnics  python  radar-imaging  recurrent-neural-networks  reinforcement-learning  rekognition  reverse-engineering  rnn  rnns  robotics  robots  san-bernardino-cave-and-technical-rescue-team  san-francisco  sar  science  security  segmentation  selfsupervised-learning  sequential-data  snarl  space-communication  space-exploration  spawar  speech-recognition  sqlite  support-vector-machines  symbolic-ai  tags-labeling  technical-skills  technology  temporal-dependencies  tensorflow  the-vermont-on-wilshire  time-series-forecasting  tpus  ujet  vaes  variational-autoencoders  vision-transformers  wag  wired  writing  

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