27 July 2008

iPhone 2.0 apps

I download the iphone2.0 update this week and have been trying out some free apps from the itunes appstore. here's the ones i've kept (so far):


Best of the ones I've downloaded. I can control my itunes library from anywhere in the house. now i just need to pick up an airport express to stream music to my stereo.


You tell it to figure out what music is playing in the room, and it does. most of the time. it does remarkably well considering distance to source, the reverb in the room, etc. Doesn't do so well if someone nearby is talking, not surprisingly.

Google Mobile App

Searches your phone for string matches. nice, since apple still hasn't given me a way to search my contacts.


Minutes of fun. but it is pretty hilarious, even if it doesn't track movement terribly well. good for showing off.

Labyrinth LE

this was one of my favorite toys as a kid. got one for my nephew, he was profoundly uninterested. what's wrong with kids these days? anyway, this game is pretty fun, but the free version has only 10 mazes and it takes only a few minutes to go through them all. still, it too is good for showing off.

nice job on the ballistics, and the mechanism (tiling the iphone back and forth) is more intuitive than the actual game (two knobs).


it's a googlemaps tie-in, but has shortcuts for gas stations (it missed some by my house), starbucks et. al. But the most compelling feature to me is the Buddy Beacon, which allows you to add friends and then tells you where they are. neat, huh? i thought it'd be great for finding friends in a crowd, or see where they are while you're waiting at a restaurant. Sadly, i tried it with Rick, and it put him in midtown, near 45th and 7th: he was in Brooklyn at the time. perhaps it does better with a proper GPS phone (which neither i nor Rick have).


You shake the phone and it finds a restaurant in your area. you can select the neighborhood, the type of cuisine, and the price (1-4 dollar signs). But -- it will find places MILES from the neighborhood you picked. and though it allows you to "lock down" the 3 parameters, it will find stuff that outside your parameters.

it does give you the address (and you can get to google maps from there) and you can read the reviews. but once you go to that webpage, it opens it in its own kind of browser, instead of taking you to safari. so you *don't* get the benefit of landscape mode, text resizing or that neat double-tap focus-in thing. overall, a bit disappointing.

pizza delivery

saw a pizza delivery guy this week driving a BMW 7 series. sign of the times? idiocy? had to borrow the owner's car? the driver looked 20 -- perhaps it was a high school graduation gift.

what's worse? a BMW 7 series driven by a 20 year old, or the same car smelling like pizza?

26 July 2008

God Only Knows

is it, in fact, the best Beach Boys song?

14 July 2008


i submit that these are functionally equivalent in most 3G languages:

if ((a-1) == b)


if (--a++ == b)

one day, when i can't take it anymore, i'll starting coding as in the latter.

We're in an in-between period

One of my toilets at home has one of those spring-loaded lids: you just push it over and it gently places itself in the down positions.

Ame has a toilet like that. there's one like that at work, too.

many places, of course, do not have such lids. i forget that. so in the past couple years, in many different places, I've been slamming lids down like i'm a 4 year old.

i'd like to think that, in 20 years, everyone will have such lids. except those who still have rotary phones. but i don't know anyone like that anymore. even my grandma has touchtone these days.

03 July 2008

dirt floor!

though i've had a dirt floor in my basement for only a few hours now, i would like to extol the virtues of a dirt floor:
  1. it's like being outside, only cooler
  2. i feel rustic
  3. no more worrying about if moisture is under my floor -- i can see it now
  4. not tempted to store things down there, i'll just bin them straightaway
  5. get to look at dirt and sand that no one's looked at for 108 years

i also have a trench on three sides of my house. not sure it's as cool as a dirt floor, though.

01 July 2008

Lewis Carroll notwithstanding...

found here, the following is from a statement made by a panel of the Appeals Court in the DC Circuit ruling on a habeas review for a Guantanamo prisoner:
Lewis Carroll notwithstanding, the fact the government has 'said it thrice' does not make an allegation true.
Down the rabbit hole indeed. but in a direction i'm liking.