I still can’t stand vi

I’ve been a fan of nano for as long as I’ve been editing a lot of text files remotely (soon to be approximately three years now). The learning curve was fairly gentle, and I gradually memorized the shortcuts I found to be useful. It was a good fit.

With any programming I do, I often need to make small, frequent edits to files– this is just my style. I do the majority of my actual coding in Eclipse and/or with programs like gedit, then paste files into nano or FTP them to the remote host if necessary. Obviously I can’t compare Eclipse to nano, but strictly speaking about gedit, I’ll freely admit that I’ve always been much more comfortable with GUI text editors than with nano. Of course, once the file is on the remote host, I test the results, make small modifications to my file(s) via SSH, and re-test. I generally don’t bother to go back to the IDE and/or GUI unless I’m really stumped or I have to do some major refactoring.

A few months ago, I started an internship in which I develop software and web applications for embedded Linux modules. I was, of course, right at home with the job description, but yet I still feel a twinge of horror remembering the first day I worked on some PHP files on the development kit.
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Analysis of Only Everything Lasts Forever

Alright, this is just too deliciously nerdy to not post about.

I recently started writing some things in Processing. I will of course post about that at some point, but I found something that distracted me quite strongly a little while ago.

I have been looking at lots of Processing example programs, as well as open-source projects such as ones on Open Processing. There’s so much you can do with Processing in three dimensions, but the 2-D stuff is what really holds my attention. It must be the simplicity and the ability to understand the code without having to clutter my head with all the transformations necessary for pretty 3-D effects. I appreciate a program so much more when I can grasp what it’s doing.

Anyway, I stumbled upon Kyle McDonald‘s Shuffle Enumeration Diagram, which looks like this:

It might look super-complicated, but if you read the source code, you’ll see it’s a fairly uncomplicated graphical representation of a bit shuffling algorithm in motion.

From there, I was pretty interested, and was even moreso when I read that he had used something similar in a project poetically entitled Only Everything Lasts Forever. Quoted, with some added emphasis of my own:

Only Everything Lasts Forever is a very long sound composition for MP3.

It contains every sound we can distinguish as humans, as dictated by the MP3 specification (ISO/IEC 11172-3). It explores the social and political associations of sound representation, and the psychology and philosophy of noise and emptiness.

While the entire composition is approximately 10450 years long, the first month of the composition was streamed from a server room at EMPAC starting on Sunday March 28th 2010 at 7 PM EST.

The theoretical scale of this project struck me as something unusually large, and I decided to crunch some numbers. (Warning: Informal (though hopefully correct) math ahead.)

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Trying out a new theme. So far I’m fairly impressed. It’s pretty minimalistic, it validates almost completely right out of the box, and it’s not incredibly messy if you want to change things. My old theme wasn’t well-documented, nor well-supported, and it was beginning to get really dicey with some things. On top of all that, I just really wanted to get away from its color scheme. I think this is better.

You’ll see lots of layout adjustments here until I get things the way I want them. I’ve been spending all my time on other things lately, but you can probably expect some new content as well sometime soon.

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4th July, Pittsburgh

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Because in an under-regulated, greed-driven environment, profit always supersedes public responsibility.

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