February 2005 Archives

Do Something

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Long posts are tiring. And I'm always so lazy to tidy things up. I've still to mail the guy about the Sports Night/West Wing stuff. The idea of bitching about Broadvoice more today is making me squint.

On the upside, Tori's doing very well at the moment, certain unnamed reviewers are full of shit. The site is doing pretty well, I've tidied more things up, gotten rid of some awful tables etc. I think I'll give the ringtones a couple of months, but I doubt they're gonna do much. I'm still waiting for TheOCinsider Shop to get back to me. I'd be very happy to put Chrismukkah links on the site :).

I'll at some point do a bunch of pinned posts at the right hand side, basically things like my DVD links page etc.

I'm pretty happy to do my little TV things, it's just fun. That probably is the only category feed worth subscribing to exclusively at the moment I'm afraid.

Google seems to be taking its time indexing the site, they just did a once over of the main index, not the archives yet. But at least searching the domain returns at least that one page so far.

The various clicks are registering, which is nice - I'll have to wait till I appear on the search engines before my traffic goes anywhere worth mentioning. Hopefully the Broadvoice post will do something.

I think what I might do is move my Google search boxes where the ring tones are now on the individual pages, and the intersperse the adsense banners - the search clicks just don't pay as well.

The ads are now more intrusive on the Monthly and Category pages, only because there's that much more content on them. For individual posts, you only see ads if you scroll to check trackback or comments.

Just felt like mentioning that since Google's started indexing the site more properly, the adsense is showing slightly more relevant ads on the page. The double banner will probably take time to ramp up. Unfortunately, google also has a tendency to read the top index and serve ads for all the pages like it's the top page - annoying, so many many blog and RSS ads.

This is my definitive post on Broadvoice, whose service I still use. I'll update this page as and when I have faults etc. In the interests of full disclosure, if you click on the provided Broadvoice links and sign up for service, I get a comission of your first month's bill. Go straight to the bottom of this post if you're looking for the horror stories.

Update 24/04/05: I've pretty much given up on Broadvoice, but I'm leaving this post as a cautionary tale to people to stay away from the company. I stayed with them for about 3 months and it was 3 months of intermittent service and static filled calls. I did eventually manage to get through to their help line, but their magic bullet answer is to change proxies. There are 5 that I've found, dca, mia, lax, chi, bos - none of which really helps me - all have problems at some time or other.

Their customer service is so lax that even though I've been topping search engines for "Broadvoice Sucks" for weeks now, they've never contacted me to help solve problems - or point out that some of the info I provide is very wrong - for instance the disconnection fee does not apply if you BYOD. I've moved to SkypeIN - which is fantastic and fantastically cheap. I might do more posts on VOIP, but Broadvoice is dead to me. Any referral fees will no longer come to me, as I will no longer be a customer in good standing. Die bastards Die.


Broadvoice offers a tantalising solution - you get a phone number in the area code of your choice and it can be very cheap: $7.50 a month for unlimited incoming calls ($5.95 + $1.50 "Regulatory Fee"). Sign up price is $10.00 if you want use your own device ($40.00 if you want them to send you one) or X-Lite (the softphone).

Then comes the first problem they're not immediately open about - if you don't cancel within the first 30 days, you pay a "disconnection fee" of $50.00. So be sure to be sure if you want to keep the service.

This is my setup: I use Phoneconnector to connect a phone to my computer. I can then use that to talk using either Skype or X-lite (for Broadvoice). I use the latest version of everything, drivers, applications etc. I'm using XP SP2. My connection is through Starhub Cable in Singapore (6500 down/384 up), and I tend to talk for long periods of time to the US.

Broadvoice vs. Skype (Sound Quality):

I prefer Broadvoice to Skype.

The sound quality is definitely better, especially on your end if you're on Broadvoice and the other person is on a normal line. That's the majority of my experience, and I assume that that's how most people will use it.

The reason for this though, is that Broadvoice uses a much less "lossy" codec compared to Skype - it sounds better, but it takes up more bandwidth. I don't have a problem with this, and have an upload speed of 384 kbits/s - so I'm still able to run say eMule in the background uploading at 10 kbytes/s with no noticeable effects.

However, anything more than that and the voice quality suffers from excessive lags, regular crackling, and the sound cutting in and out - though mostly on the recieving end - you will still hear the other person fine.

So if you have a very slow broadband connection/super high latency, or you *need* to run your filesharing 24/7, Broadvoice is definitely not for you. I've found that Skype is much much better at working with limited bandwidth - but in the best case scenarios, Broadvoice is still better.

Broadvoice to Broadvoice I sometimes can't really distinguish from Skype, but like I said, I don't use it this way very often. I similarly have never really tried SkypeOut, so I can't say that much about its quality.

*caveat*: VOIP is really not about super-superb voice quality, even in the best circumstances, you're going to get the occasional echo etc. But having used plenty of traditional "budget" long distance services, the sound quality of Broadvoice is at least as good as those, only cheaper.

Broadvoice vs. Skype (Features):

Most important, with Broadvoice, I have a phone number people can call in to. And if the person you want to talk to most often has unlimited local calling in the US, you can just get a number in their area code and let them go crazy calling you for $7.50 a month.

With Broadvoice, there are unlimited plans, so if you know that's what you want it's definitely more worth it than say using SkypeOut.

Broadvoice vs. Vonage (Price):

I've since moved to using the $11.50 Broadvoice plan, since it was a chore to have people call me back all the time, and Phoneconnector has some issues I'll talk about maybe later. Vonage now has a cheaper plan at $15.00 (I'm not sure about other charges), but it's 500 free minutes out, unlimited in. They also offer X-Pro along with it. Personally I still find Broadvoice a better choice for me since I make my humungous amount calls all to the same place in-state.


My final bit of advice is to try out the various services yourself. Skype and Broadvoice are pretty much free/cheap to try, depending on what hardware you have and how much you know how to do. That's the best way of finding out. Just be careful of Broadvoice's 30 day limit.

My Litany of Complaints About Broadvoice:

This isn't the full extent of my problems, I'll save those for when I feel the need to get my bile up.

March 02 2005: Cut off in the middle of a call, wasn't able to call back. Still managed to get incoming call, but then got cut off after 20 minutes. After that could call in or out. All in all lasted about an hour of inconsistencies after which everything was fine. Concievably they were further fixing a previous problem, that I couldn't call my Singapore land line. But had been fixed at least a couple of hours before. Will probably be seriously considering whether or not to cancel up till my 30 day limit. You'd think if you pay for something it'd just work and not give you problems.

I've decided it's just easier for me to post my e-mails to Broadvoice below. I've *NEVER EVER* recieved a reply from them either by e-mail or with a callback - though the problems do tend to eventually get fixed. I edit out all the personal information.

Further Links:

From my own research the links below are the most useful, and contain the most horror stories for those who want to hear the worst of what Broadvoice can offer. If you're willing to trawl, you can go through these reviews at dslreports.com. The most extensive and frequently updated report looks to be this one though: this seems to be the most exhaustive account of faults and problems a guy had before moving to Vonage. There are good reviews as well, but that's probably not what you came here looking for.

Latest e-mail to Broadvoice:

This is an update on the problem below that you’ve still not fixed and still not replied to me about.

The crackling sound still persisted, so I tried changing proxies from proxy.lax.broadvoice.com (which is what I’ve been using all along) to proxy.dca.broadvoice.com. dca doesn’t ping quite as fast, but changing it to that seemed to fix the problem – however, after talking for an extended period (about 30 minutes), the regular crackling on the other side came back. When I called back, the crackling still persisted. I’ll say this again – this was never a problem before 12pm Monday March 14th Singapore/Hong Kong time.

Throughout all this, with either proxy, I was still unable to call the singapore numbers, though the mobile number might be okay now – the land line definitely isn’t.

You have to realise that I send you e-mails because your 24 hour support line is never *never* available.

At the moment, my “Broadvoice Sucks” post is now no. 2 on Google, by the way: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=broadvoice+sucks&btnG=Google+Search

You can find the actual post, with these e-mails and the gaping hole of your lack of replies here: http://newblog.fallingbeam.org/blog/archives/2005/02/broadvoice_suck_1.html



Account no:
Order Number:
Broadvoice/Contact Tel. no.: call any time.
Using X-Lite softphone with Phoneconnector
Not using Router, connecting on gateway computer running XP SP2, ICS, Windows Firewall (exception for X-Lite)
Using Starhub Cable (Singapore), 6500/384

I’ve had a history of problems, as detailed below. I’ve received no replies to my e-mails, even though the problems below were eventually fixed.

As before, I find I can no longer dial this number: . Previously I had been able to do so without problems. That number can still call in to me with no problems. Other phones are able to call in. The error message in X-lite is “408 – Timed out”. The problem no. belongs to my cable company (they also provide broadband to me) – it’s a digital phone service.

Previously when this happened I was still able to call in to the country (singapore +65), for example the mobile no. . Now this is not the case and I can no longer call that mobile no. I get the same error message: “408 – Timed out”.

*The biggest problem though* is that when calling a US no. – – the person on the other end hears continual crackling sounds at regular intervals, at least as of 12pm Monday March 14th Singapore/Hong Kong time. Previously there had been no problems and I was able to call and receive calls from this number with no problems – this has occurred at the same time I noticed the above problems.

The only time I had previously had this crackling problem was when I had had limited upload bandwidth from running P2P programs. I’ve since stopped using those programs while calls take place and that solved the crackling (so there have been no problems with this crackling for weeks since I figured this out) – but now, despite having stopped the P2P during calls, there are still these artifacts as stated above.

The crackling occurs regardless of whether I initiate the call or I am called.

Drop me an e-mail or call when it’s fixed – it’s only polite.

I maintain a log of the deluge of problems that Broadvoice gives me: http://newblog.fallingbeam.org/blog/archives/2005/02/broadvoice_suck_1.html

The worst part of this is that this is the last day I’m able to subscribe to your service without incurring your usage penalty of $50 if I later cancel my line – you tell me what I should make of that.



From: Louis
Sent: Monday, February 28, 2005 8:23 PM
To: 'support@broadvoice.com'
Subject: Can't call to this no.

Account no:
Order Number:
Broadvoice/Contact Tel. no.: call any time.
Using X-Lite softphone with Phoneconnector
Not using Router, connecting on gateway computer running XP SP2, ICS, Windows Firewall (exception for X-Lite)
Using Starhub Cable (Singapore), 6500/384

I’ve had a history of problems, as detailed below. I received no reply to my e-mail, even thought he problem below was fixed.

When it was fixed though, I found I could no longer dial this number: . Previously I had been able to do so without problems. That number can still call in to me with no problems. Other phones are able to call in. The error message in X-lite is “408 – Timed out”.

Am still able to call in to the country (singapore +65), for example the mobile no. . Everything else has been fine, I’ve been able to call US no.s and they’ve been able to call in. The problem no. belongs to my cable company (they also provide broadband to me) – it’s a digital phone service.

Drop me an e-mail or call when it’s fixed – it’s only polite.



From: Louis
Sent: Wednesday, February 23, 2005 9:13 PM
To: 'support@broadvoice.com'
Subject: Unable to recieve incoming calls (but can still call out)

Resent to comply with support instructions.

Account no:
Order Number:
Tel. no.: (call the singapore no. because, well, I can’t receive incoming calls on my Broadvoice no. ATM), call any time.
Using X-Lite softphone with Phoneconnector
Not using Router, connecting on gateway computer running XP SP2, ICS, Windows Firewall (exception for X-Lite)
Using Starhub Cable (Singapore), 6500/384

I’m having problems receiving incoming calls. There had been no problems with the service previously, I signed up about a week ago and had been receiving incoming calls fine. But while I can’t currently receive incoming calls, I can still call out, without problem.

What happens when someone calls in (now, that is), they just hear silence for about 10-20 seconds then an engaged tone – or maybe a cannot connect message. On my end, I get a call through, but when I pick up, X-Lite says connected, but there’s just silence. If I let it ring, X-lite acts as if 2 calls are coming in, on line 3 and line 2 – by which time the caller has already gotten the engaged tone.

Please fix this. I’ve restarted X-Lite a number of times, and restarted my computer/internet connection – and I say again, I can still call out without problems.

Also, when are you going to allow support for more efficient codecs on your service? Things like ilbc? Or basically just codecs that are more bandwidth efficient.

I’ve also still not received a response from you regarding your site’s incompatibility with the Opera Browser. This is a copy of what I sent previously:

“When I sign in to my account, instead of being brought to my account page I’m sent to a page that says this:

You are using a mobile device.
Opera/7.60 (Windows NT 5.1; U; en)
Click Me

I tried this with numerous versions of Opera, including the latest 8 beta. I identify as Opera. Please fix this. For more details on browser sniffing/headers etc. please refer to http://my.opera.com/community/openweb/info/
In addition, the automated referral service (http://www.broadvoice.com/opportunities_referral.html) you provide does not work in Opera, ie the referrer’s no. is not filled in when you go to the sign-up page.”



Mia Kirshner really is rather lovely, and does certain things pretty well, but really, you have to wonder if she chooses the simpery pretentious roles or they choose her. It's probably not a surprise I'd probably like her best as she was in 24, but that's a bit wrong. But Sarah Bernhard's probably very right in complaining about how annoying she is - I think she was on Graham Norton at the time.

But I guess this season answers my question about lesbian camp then. Sarah Bernhard seems to just have been given a silly role. This is probably the first writing montage sequence that hasn't had be hurling. Wouldn't everyone want to be as pretty and vulnerable as Mia Kirshner?

Laurel Holloman still looks good acting pregnant. So this must be what Michael Holden wass doing while Battlestar was on hiatus. This is me having resolved to wait till the end of an episode before I post. I can't believe that they are doing a rotating table perspective shot - self-stabbing ensues. But it's not bad drama by any means. Oh well, at least Lap Dance is an apt enough title.

Damn, looks like I'm going to have to keep watching this season. Very sweet.

I'm now wondering if the Abby kidnap episode of ER isn't based on something, because the same(ish) storyline is occuring in Boomtown.

They must have wanted paramedic woman on 24 because they knew she could do the duress thing. She's *so* much less annoying on Boomtown though - she isn't the mugsiest one on the show right now, but now that mugsy's gone, she's definitely climbing the charts.

One thing I'll say about Boomtown, at least it isn't shy about the scale to which it aspires. It's really not as awful as it was trailed. Again, it probably appeals to me because it's parabolic. I'm wondering at my ambivalence towards the plain-spoken people in the series, just as I wonder at my ambivalence towards the hushed individuals. But the reporter is stunningly pretty I think, and Neil whatever is more palatable in small doses. Jason Gedrick I rather appreciate - he really carries his careworn look with a very conscientious gravitas. The 24 girl does her best to be appealing.

I'd link to the DVD, but they don't include the season 2 episodes. Hence you will be pointed here. If you want more Jason Gedrick, you know where to go.

I think it's the evocation of landscape from the pilot that's stuck with me, and again the parables that Fearless seems to be so much a party to.


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I actually have all of these, though I bought the Cold Feet individually. So yes, Spooks Season 1 and Season 2, then Cold Feet the Complete Series - all 5 seasons. The Murder One here is the entire Series, seasons 1 and 2. At the moment, only Season 1 is available in the US.

cover cover cover cover

Advertising Flurry

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I'm now wondering whether I should just do away with the ring tone crap, but at the moment that would just be too much work. Adsense is actually working, there appear to be a least a trickle of clicks - god knows from where. I'm assuming that none of my behavious counts as clicks, since I've been trying my darndest not to click on my own ads.

But other than that, I've put up a subscription to the Economist, if only so I can have the cover on my page. It's the same price you'd get anywhere else for a subscription in the US - even on the Economist.com, where you could subscribe if you're in another country.

If you're a student or an academic, then things are different and you can try here. The academic price is $77 as opposed to the normal price of $129 via my link - and come to think of it, they don't seem particularly stringent about checking if you're a student or not, so whatever. For a while now I've just been loth to refer to myself as a student, so whatever.

The Amazon links are also sort of a bit of fun, to show Sports Night and Murder One. Unfortunately the Murder One cover isn't as nice as it should be, but it points to the full series set rather than the pokey season one set available on Amazon.com. I'll probably do a page for stuff like Spooks etc. Basically the stuff that I actually think is worth getting on DVD rather than leeching off http://www.the-realworld.de/.

The Comcast links were one of the few legitimate ISPs I could see - and 4 megabits is nothing to sneeze at, if I remember correctly their upstream wasn't bad either. SBC I'd be too ambivalent about to recommend anyway. Even if alot of the fault was probably my router, come to think of it.

Annoying thing is that I'd probably have to do 2 different pages, one for US stuff and one for UK stuff. But then I'm not sure I could recommend the MI-5 sets - I've not really checked them out. And anyway, shipping to the US from the UK is pretty okay, and things are that much cheaper without VAT, so...

In the interests of full disclosure, when I eventually do my search.ini tutorial, my customised search.ini will have my own affiliate searches on there - for amazon, google etc. That'd be what you help me out with for getting a customised dictionary.com wikipedia search.ini.

Susanna Thompson (Karen Sammler) from Once and Again is on (of all things) Medical Investigation!! She pulls off the whole politicking boss thing rather well - more borg queen than Eli's mom, but really rather worth watching, in a series that is only barely so. Particularly rewarding is the chemistry with Eva (Anna Belknap), doing the whole "we both understand PR" bit.

I'm not quite sure why Sabrina Lloyd was so fetching this episode, but I suspect it's the very flattering clothes and nice fitting jackets. Still looks great in a vest and gun. Note for continuity freaks, this was the 3rd in production terms even though it's airing 6th.

Amy Adams in a Fat Suit

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I'm watching early Wetboy, because I saw Amy Adams guested - so yes, fat suit. This should be fun, and not a little wet. You realise that this will lead to me getting even more wetness. Doesn't look like the series has changed that much.

I'm just thinking that they must have a generic bathroom set, because she looks like she's in what's suddenly looking like the Can't Hardly Wait bathroom.

This is *so* some eating disorder parable - they must have taken this whole teenage issues thing seriously back then. She seems to do pretty well in the role though, they must have brought her in to plump up (whee) the acting talent on the show while finding their legs. But yes, very freak of the week. She must have really not been playing age appropriate though - which is probably all the better considering the subject matter. Very after-school special, and pretty heavy handed with the analogous-ness meant to evoke that naughty extremity.

I wonder if she got this from being on Buffy - they must have had some confidence to give her such a prominent role. I'm now also wondering why she was on Conan so early on, perhaps to promote Drop Dead Gorgeous - which I'll have to watch again to remember which one she was. She wouldn't have been promoting Psycho Beach Party would she? But yes that would explain linkage with Buffy though.

Oh yes, the Mummy called - it wants its mouth gaping effect back. I get the feeling it's really the better actresses that do the best in their psycho roles. The series really is so predicated on people/teenagers, being *really crazy*. Oh yes, and cue shattered glass reflecting shattered self, followed by flaming conflagration a-la Atlakvida.

Apparently the guy who directed her in this, also directed an episode of Dr. Vegas - if I'm not wrong one in which she's very prominent - interesting.

I just wanted the headline. There have been periods when that line has played over in my head repeatedly, for whatever reason. Reminds me of what I wrote about Elephant. There are a number of things you could search for on this site - pornography for instance, that would be a good one, and you might be amused by what you find. Of course the Tara Reid link is in the elephant post, also pornography related in the end, and not in the way that might be thought - obviously.

1 down 18 to go.

Slashdot says so

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Good god, it must be because it's early and I just woke up that I just did this:

Did no one see this? Opera actually has benchmark testing that arguably makes it the "fastest" browser. It's true. Slashdot says so: http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=05/02/11/2016227&from=rss

I'm not sure if you know this, but Avant Browser used to have another name: IE Opera - until the guy figured out what copyright was.

Also, since Microsoft has so recently found the religion that is inter'opera'bility, it'll only be a matter of time before we have a more agnostic interweb. I meant that's what IE7 will be about right? right? http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/02/11/hakon_on_ms_interroperability/

Some things really have that effect - to put the fanboy shrill in your voice. If us scrappy underdog browser users can sound that way, it's from years of frustration.

Does anyone really think that something as clumsy and cluttered as these IE slappers will ever be more responsive, more elegant that the real thing?

Don't even get me started on Firefox.

So yes, that's me, angry Opera guy. *sigh*

You'll find it here, from here. Does no one else feel my pain?

This reminds me of the beginning of the Firefly pilot, Walsh playing with the dinosaurs, "curse your sudden, but inevitable betrayal... Oh, No - God."

Headline Challenge

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Hey, if any of you can figure out the absolute obliquetry that are some of my headlines, I'll give you a prize. I'm just looking at my front page now and I've found a couple. Really I wonder whether the fuck I'm going to remember what all this crap refers to whenever it is I actually bother to look at it again. These aren't that difficult I wouldn't think, I'm sure there are others that are worse. So a few to start with - I suppose commenting with the post itself would make the most sense.

Bitchfight is probably too easy.
Christina Ricci, Elsie Snuffin, like throwing a stick just requires a little close reading, and at least some attention to my past writing.
*ahem* Project Gutenberg requires specific knowledge, but a bit of trawling might be required.

There really will be prizes. Meals at the least. Nice ones.

Category Feeds

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I found this little helper to create category based RSS feeds - so if you're just interested in a particular category, you can subscribe to the relevant feed.

You can find the list of categories as folders here, and just get the respective feed inside - index.rdf.

Pretty spanky if I should say so myself.

Feedburner Feeds: Television

Feedburner I find a bit annoying, but since it's there what the hell. The ads only really show up in IE, but then that serves people right. In other browsers it's just a neater page to browse - in feed readers it just shows the content. I'm wondering who would continually read in IE that they'd see the amazon links though.

Hot White Cum

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Liz Phair rocks. Really brings out the chick-rock in me. Which made me think of this post for the mention of Wei-chean.

The word rock always seems to remind me of the Pet Shop Boys lyric "cause I dance to disco and don't like rock". I'm sure I've mentioned it before, but Neil Tennant makes at least 2 mentions of a lover who ridicules because of not liking rock. Very much like Aaron Sorkin that way, or his writing staff, because I always suspect that it's the same guy (not Aaron) doing those episodes. That's probably one of my favorite post titles, probably because I didn't write it.

Opera's caching is so useful it's not even true - being able to reload form info from the cache is just unbelievable and totally inconcievable with any other browser.

Fanboy Heaven

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I saw this on Scoble's blog and couldn't resist.

I'm probably too big of a Klipfolio (www.serence.com) fanboy (T-shirt anyone?), but what's up with RSS readers looking so incredibly boring - this one included.

Speaking as an Opera fan(person), I can't even say that its RSS functionality is that much less boring - but at least with that you get a proper browser/mail client along with it (html blocking, super-fast database searches). How much you want to bet NewzToddler's "embedded browser" is UI slapping on IE? And I've yet to see anyone particularly excited by any use of the Windows XP notification balloons.

So if Klipfolio is too radical for you, and you insist on paying money, I'm sure Opera's news/rss etc. functionality is still that much better.

I'm such a troll.

Apparently Eric Rice hangs out there as well.

I know at least some people thought I was overcompensating by doing what I did and tacking what I did, but I think it was more about just being less constrained in what I felt I could do and how I should surround myself. It was fun, like smoking, but the sellers really know their market of idiots.

The Gates, get it?

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Well, even if the Other Plaice thinks he's boring, at least he knows what's funny when he sees it. There's a boggler who got his photoshop on and decided to coin himself a headline: Bill Gates changing name to 'The Gates'. Scoble's post is here.

Under pressure. I suppose they do manage to make Elliot seem rather charmingly sexy. I need to stop using the word rather. It's just that if you start watching Scrubs from 3rd season, you're thinking to yourself if blonde doctor was just dumpy for 2 seasons before she became barbie. I'm pretty fond of Bambi though. Bite me. What was it again? Little pony trying to stand up for the first time style? Something like that.

And again, the series seems to does wonders for making music appeal to sentiment. That would be the hence of the Counting Crows thing. Sarah Lancaster was more appealing in that one episode that any of the Dr. Vegas. And Heather Locklear wasn't too bad, reasonably funny.

I'm sure I've mentioned before that an inordinate number of people who appear on the Bachelor/Bachelorette just *happen* to be in pharmaceutical sales, and also happen to be, I think the term is, smokin' hotties. Tina Fabulous for example.

This brought on, by the way, by Heather Locklear's appearance on Scrubs as a rep. Charming.

Smoochy smoochy - the groupies sleep with the roadies to get to Mick, as Hugh Laurie might opine.

Me and *sexy* titles.

Nurse Practitioner reminds me of Dr. Vegas, and the lovely Amy Adams. I'm even happy the rest of the episodes never aired, because the had already squeezed her out. Which by the way is the name of an interwebspite. It's nice to see her in an expanded role, even though I really like her in 20 Hours in America.

Scrubs makes me miss Counting Crows.

Fries with that shake. New shower curtain. I think the Gilmore Girls thing was a reference to some teen movie - I've now discovered it's a reference to Mean Girls, because of the "Plastics" but it's also a staple of teen dramas, introducing the the various subcultures in the High School. I know it happens in Ten Things I Hate About You, but I'm sure there's a more illustrious predecessor

Michelle Branch is married!! And having a baby!! With her bass player who's twice her age!! She apparently got married last May??!?

Ah well.

There'll be more news here eventually. Apparently it all emanates from People Magazine.

She'd been trying out her new duo/band thing, the Wreckers, recently - hence the appearance on One Tree Hill.

It had to be just as I moved over to Movable Type 3!!! Opera has enabled document.selection and document.getSelection, as you can see here. Which means there is nothing I can't do with Movable Type in Opera anymore!! Happy day :D. I can now post links through Opera with abandon.

Opera da man.

Also, Google has fixed its Google maps service to work with Opera, and this beta fixes the much ballyhooed IDN security issue. More details here.

I heart Opera. I want to hug it like it's furry.

"Victory is mine, Victory is mine! Great day in the morning, people, victory is mine... I drink from the keg of glory Donna, bring me the finest muffins and bagels in all the land."

On another lovely note, Mozilla seems to have stumbled, or at least caused some controversy, with it's own version fo the security fix - disabling the feature. But then it's the Register...

Muahahaha, Me-sa Evil....

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Kristin Kreuk really gets into camping it up. And it really says something that she's *so* much more likable as a psycho bitch witch from the past. But yes, she really seems to get into the whole evil thing, which probably indicates how bored she otherwise likely is.

*Ewww* *Wet*.

Yes, I know it's Parminder Nagra

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Neela's doing the best voiceover I remember hearing, nicely modulated, persistent look of being lost throughout - very impressive. Ron from West Wing doing ER is good as well. But really, Neela is being spectacular in the episode. These are the real actors, the ones who don't look like they're doing much, or not doing anything special, but it can be breathtaking the deftness of it. As with so many things, the magic, they always seem to say, is to make it look easy.

*ahem* Project Gutenberg

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One of the things about me is that things I find stupid I tend to just roll my eyes at and move on. Dismissal seems to be my super-hero power. In this case it cleverly keeps from allowing more people into a stuffy kneed cockmuncher's silly little reign. Why point people to things that are full of bastard covered bastards with a hard bastard centre? But then it's getting slashdotted as we speak, so this is me being Pyrrhic - which actually refers to something (I found out in checking it up before using it) - dictionary.com and wikipedia are doing wonders for me. Though Proxomitron has a large part to do with why I don't use another dictionary altogether. Add them to your search.ini. Ask me how.

Finally Defrag, Gay Marissa

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After moving my eMule temp files from the temp disk, it seems that they were what's stopping the drive from defragmenting - the bastards. Gay Marissa is probably the best thing about the OC this season.

I'm sorry, but how many rss related ads is google going to serve on my site? I encourage you to at least click on all the klipfolio ones. I personally endorse them - though if you click on them, they probably have to pay for it. The good part is the money comes to me. Me me me. Muahaha. Louis has gone ad-crazy apparently.

"I'm sure it's just a phase" - effective fade out on Kirsten. "It was for me". Alienating and severe. How could this episode actually be an okay one? Oh my god. Most fetching Marissa in loose shift ever in recent memory.

Lost in suspension.

But it would seem that the underclocking is doing good - I can only assume that I ran out of luck with the CPU, since the ram's supposed to be bending in the pollen.

For a film reference I must say that at least they can't be faulted for not building it up and working it. Though I think the roof was the better climax.

Merci Y'all is still cracking me up.

Blonde Doctor

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For whatever reason, I find Joey that much better than Friends. And yes, Christina Ricci is in this episode, so yay. She's pretty good, very lovely with the big eyes, being lively, spritely and springy, acting cute. The eye narrowing is particularly good. And well, Alex is quite comely, and probably one of the better actresses doing comedy.

Bottom Up

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I've been thinking for bit now that it's actually smart to put my adsense banner at the bottom of category pages etc. because, if they're reading through by date, then they would start at the bottom. Of course already my ardour for boggling 12 times a day has waned, but, well, that was to be expected. It was a lot of expectorant anyway. It's a pity that google isn't indexing my site faster, I'd much wish that the google search boxes be useful - but it'll happen eventually. At the moment it just shows nothing.

The political bent of the media focus on boggling is quite a bit binky, and it's starting to piss me off. The fact that blogads also seems to push that idea is a bit silly, I would think, like riding a wave.

Christina Ricci really is rather fetching, and Triumph is always hilarious. I dug in and decided to delete whatever Desperate Housewives I had - I will no longer be an enabler. Jack and Bobby just isn't any fun without Missy, and the whole war crimes thing was just annoying. Elsie Snuffin appeared though, which was fun - just a completely unrewarding role. I've already said West Wing is fantastic, but it bears repeating - I get the feeling it's one of the few genuinely grown up shows on TV. I wonder if I'll ever get around to watching Unscripted.

Good thing about having my notebook next to my bed now is that I can ignore even more television. I'm now going to delete Cambridge Spies. Or not. This is why I'm drowning in discs.

I now remember why I started downloading it to begin with, because Anna-Louise Plowman is in it, who is endlessly fetching. It makes me actually want to consider downloading Stargate SG-1. I still think My Life in Film is pretty worthy, if only for that first episode with her in it. She's married to the guy who was in Perfect Strangers.


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I'm basically making up a post to try out Pingomatic, which supposedly pings a whole bunch of blog update services at the same time - and it can be automated through movable type. Traffic, baby, traffic :).

It's spelt centre.

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Is anyone else starting to get a bit annoyed by the advertising on the site? And it appears once you stop clicking on your own links (sorry google, I was just testing it out), they're not *quite* as effective. We'll see, it might just be a bit of a shock to the system. What is rather annoying is that comments are so low now on the page, I'm wondering if they're noticeable. Though I suppose people would be getting at them via the comments link if they see them on the main page. I'll just try an get used to it.

On a related note, I'm getting really rather embarassed by how inelegant some of the coding I do for the templates is - lots and lots of center tags.


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Alex Graves really seems to do pretty good West Wing episodes. Rather innovative use of the characters features and space. And he makes Mary McCormack look hot. I think it's because of Toby that I want a beard. The party I thought was particularly good. I'm going to look forward to watching this season again. Toby is really really good, despite the gush on his face at the convention.


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Instructions on how to enable your RSS feed on blogger.com sites. Details on why RSS is good for you can be found here.


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Why do people still have to use 800x600. I'm feeling ever so slightly gumpy about the whole affair. At least I know now that that's one thing my Acer will be perfect for for a while yet - I should probably do most of my formatting there - it probably that much rarer for things to go wrong at higher than at lower resolutions. The ads are pretty much done - any complaints would be welcome.

As it is I'm much fonder of this kind of advertising, with a set rate of return per click through, that's not dependant on purchase. And at 8c a click, the returns aren't going to be too bad, espcially once they get around to indexing the pages. I'm really setting the target to break even in terms of hosting, to get back the $65 bucks. Doesn't seem unreasonable.

Unfortunately I'm never going to get to see most of the ads, since they're blocked most of the time, I suppose the search is the likeliest way in that sense, but even then the paid links get suppressed. I suppose I'm just going to have to leave it to the people using IE, haven't discovered proxomitron, an who use Firefox because the UI is snazzy. I'm probably the only one so rabid in blocking ads of the people I know though, really.

Hopefully Blogads comes through as well, and then I can tell the ringtones to bite me - though as I've noted, they do show up despite ad blocking. In many ways I'm not convinced Google does that good a job of indexing the site, the built in search seems more capable, and doesn't just scan the big amalgamated pages.

This is probably why I call this a food diary rather than a recommendation of places to eat. I tend to go to Macs when I'm awake all night and want to have a nicer breakfast than I normally do. And when I'm craving pancakes. Don't get me wrong, I'd be left-testicle-less if I could live opposite a Pancake House, but since it's nearby, macs will have to do. I've never really had a Pancake Day, though I'm rather intrigued by the connotation of Pancake Breakfasts. Eggs Michael is to die for by the way, and so is the Andouile Hash.

Basically I go to Macs when I'm really sick of Burger King - because let's face it, Burger King breakfast is a pale cousin riding a pale horse, out of which the sausage is made. First of all the food at BK is really unabashedly microwaved, second it's just not as good as the Mac stuff - though to be sure, BK breakfast is forever going to be Presidential Primary and Presidential Debate food. The hash brown at macs is really *so* much better. The sandwiches are better. The french toast sticks aren't as good as the pancakes. And Burger King burgers: to quote Jelly (Third Watch), "... to have microwaved bacon".

Oh, and Subway actually does breakfast as well - microwaved eggs. But sometimes it's that or noodles in the morning again - I haven't had toast in a while now.

Definitive Posts

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I've decided to have a few Definitive Posts, basically static content that I'm to lazy to make static. The top post, about:bog for instance, that would a definitive post about the bog, and this would be a definitive post about, well. I would update these rather than add new posts about them, though I might mention if one is substantially updated.

This is a nod perhaps to the fact that things can be hard to find around here, especially as I tend to write around things. So at least these will be more concrete, and it'll be good for the advertising to have a few tailored pages.


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Oh me of little faith. I'm now serving google ads. I think, until their bot crawls my new pages, the ads will be a bit limited. At the moment they seem to be rather tasteful public service ads. I've taken off the more annoying ads now that these guys have stepped up.

I refuse to put things above the fold - that's not the kind of site this is. The search box will be more useful, again, once they've crawled. It's also useful now to demarcate where the pinned posts end.

I'm now going to put ads all over my old blog, arr.


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Now that I'm back in bed, let's just say I'm a little pleased by how tasteful the ringtone banners are, and how the other mobile content banners really aren't - I think I'm particularly happy about the naughty bits. I now have a minisite of my own featuring "adult" mobile content, happy day. I suppose these are particularly useful in that they aren't blocked by my proxomitron filters, or Firefox's CSS blocker. Though really these aren't going to pay for anything unless there's a epidemic of ringtone junkies coming here. I'm still waiting for adsense, but I get the feeling that's not going to pan out. Anyway this just helps me feel a bit more fun about things, so whatever. Lik-Sang's banner was just too annoying, so well, neh.

Most Annoying Banner Ad *Ever*

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It's an affiliate program with Lik-Sang, I think I heard about them when they used to be on the Sharereactor page. I'm really only doing this for fun, I don't expect anyone would actually click on it, much less buy anything. And for me it's not an issue since it's conveniently blocking in everything except IE - so boo-ya suckas. I'm still hoping to find something that pays for advertising, not for results :). Adsense is so not bothering, and neither is blogads. We'll have to see. If I don't hear anything back from anyone good, I'll start putting the lik sang ads on the individual pages.

I now also sell ring tones. *Sexy* ring tones :).

I mean, I'm not saying that it was a great episode, but compared to the puddles that have pooled around it, it wasn't bad. There's something to be said for a show that can consistenty pull off really good teasers, and Laurelei "not having any" really rather counts. This perhaps makes me mourn for first season OQ - again.

Paris really can do no wrong. And I'm personally quite happy to have Doyle on the show, he's actually been the catalyst for quite a bit of the fun on the show. The only downside is that there is far less Rory-Paris action than there used to be. Can't decide if Abby and Neela are better.

Instead of doing anything else

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You think if I find a way to die from RSI, they'll name it after me?

Tell me my LCD is worth buying

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I'm planning on getting a new monitor, because, as a great philosopher once said "because we want to, because we want to" - or was it "do you have a girlfriend?".

I want it with DVI, not just because someday I might find dual monitor useful, but supposedly for higher resolutions it's just the thing. And I won't have to boot from the TV any more. I've figured that 15 is getting too small for my britches, so 17's the way to go. I'm eying this Viewsonic one, that coincidentally has a Tom's Hardware article on it. It also appears to be the cheapest 17 with DVI available at Sim Lim that's not CMV.

The only thing in the article that worries me is the luminecense issue, which is so annoying with my current monitor. Latency doesn't appear to bother me, it's just I need to be able to show black properly so games don't suck.

Flame me. Flame me please.

In praise of MBA's?

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It's time for another bunch of the Economist's bread and butter holy grail articles - digging deep into their world view, their ideological convictions if you will, much like they did with their issue on CSR (subscription required).

This time it's actually a rather fitting companion piece to the CSR stuff, with a rebuttal of the idea that MBAs are *killing America* - or some such. These are free to ether. There's their leader, then the longer article.

I've also decided to be whatever it is that I am, and use this to inaugurate my "News" category - that's not the most descriptive way of putting it, but it's as good as it gets, probably.

I don't actually want to write anything, and I'm pretty tired of trying to sound interesting. So yes, bogging fatigue is starting to set in. That, or this is the lull that happening because I've just finished watching the stuff that was already downloaded when I woke up at 3, and I'm waiting for the rest to happen.

House was good, I'm really still quite liking the whole thing with House and Cameron, it's sort of sweet. I'm wondering if anything will impress me like the first bunch of episodes did. I'll get back to you when I get around to watching it in production order. I'm just hoping that the sophmore crap-out doesn't afflict it like it did the OQ.

I've got a number of pending posts which I think I'll just quickly whip up while I'm waiting. Oh, and Broadvoice really does suck - I'm having problems with incoming calls - but I'll say more when I'm pissed off that they don't reply to support e-mails.

I'm so full of crap

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This was my pitch to Blogads:

I write about a range of subjects, obviously some personal, but also on technology, media, books, television, film, hardware and software, internet technology, online shopping, VOIP; as well as whatever topics my readers request of me, including lifestyle, food suggestions, political and economic opinions. I write about things I know, and people trust my opinions because of it.

I am a technology evangelist, and my site reflects that. People who discover my site do so by links in forums, other weblogs, trackbacks - many discussing technology purchase decisions - and they come looking for information. My search strings regularly feature interest in television, software, and technology products of all kinds.

I provide information in the best way possible, in an environment that is sincere, un-self-conscious, personal, opinionated and anecdotal - in a form that is meandering instead of direct, engaging rather than alienating. People actually spend time here, figuring things out.

Everything Sucks

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I'm quite interested in the idea of people bogging for profit. Eric Rice tries to do it. Robert Scoble does it so well that he gets an article in the Economist. I wouldn't mind being an evangelist - talking about things, using them, being objective in a way that's at least open, in a tone that's not hackish. So I've decided to start writing about the things I use. I want to write about ICDSoft, but they don't seem to have an affiliate program. I'd write about Opera, but there are tonnes of fanboys out there - I'd save that for later, and I'd want it to be a fantastic article that is able to enjoy it's own pith. So I'm going to write about Broadvoice. I'll probably put it in a seperate post later, and be sure to include the phrase Broadvoice Sucks somewhere so that people who are searching for the downside will click through. I think the line will be, Broadvoice sucks - sometimes. Or Broadvoice sucks if you don't manage your bandwidth properly. And of course I'd compare it to Kazaa, and do a Broadvoice vs. Kazaa thing. Then maybe a Phoneconnector section: using Broadvoice with Phoneconnector. Coming soon.

Gallows Pole

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I think people should realise how strange it is that I'm displaying a grand total of 2 days worth of posts on my main index page, when not too long ago I had to set it to display 40 days. I'm trying to swing.

I'm also thinking to myself that I should go round sim lim some time, and have a look at monitors. I'm now tempted to establish a little workstation at my bedside, get a lower surface to mouse on, a keyboard I can put on my lap, or something along those lines. And perhaps eventually move my current monitor there, so I'm not stuck with 800x600. How devilish.

News, Articles.

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I'm also wondering if I should write about news more - have a news category, comment on articles etc. I'm sure I've done this in the past, but only in passing, and not surprisingly dealing mostly with the Economist. I mostly get my news from Reuters, scan Google News for headlines, sometimes go to the Post and the Times, occasionally Fox News. I'm just wondering how fruitful the endeavour would be. Of course Louis doen't necessarily subscribe to his own fiction that people actually read this/give a crap - all this, if nothing else, occupies me. If I'm doing it, and reading it, why not write about it. One of the big reasons why not is that daily news annoys me. But then that would be what I'm doing, parsing news I actually think merits it, much as the Economist is able to do by publishing weekly.

Working on 800x600 again, I realise how useful the drop down search in Opera is, since I can't have all my searches so readily available. Which reminds me I'd also like to do little tutorials, like how to do more with the search.ini - probably the most convincing reason I know that differentiates Opera from Firefox. I am quite happy to leave the RSS entry up though, since that's something that needs more exposure. I'd probably end up pinning a post that acts as an index of important tech articles - or some such. I suppose I could move the entry to Articles, but then I'd feel the need to polish it up a bit.

Just to say though, part of the appeal of writing about the news is also to keep a kind of record - I'm wondering whether silence really is that compelling a response to activity.

Watching the Prize

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Perhaps it has more resonance because it's probably that much better than the later seasons. They're also DVD rips, and widescreen. Oh my T'Pol's haircut was funny. Unfortunately the rips of the pilot don't seem to be quite proper, but whatever - I just want to watch it now, so. Oh, and I really much prefer the older theme song. The characters are really rather sweet.

Huh, I didn't realise the rips are off Channel 4, not DVD like I said.


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A new category for file sharing updates perhaps? Links to sites, new alternatives as the old ones get bent over? Perhaps trying out newer apps like DC++ and the Gnutella 2 network?


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It just popped into my head, that probably most of Spooks isn't necessarily that good - that when it's not written by Howard Brenton, it's about the quality of middling Joss Whedon work - just doing things. That said, the Howard Brenton stuff is a particular kind of flawless.

Louis writing a TV guide of the current season? Problem is I tend to respond best when I'm watching them all in a row (as witnessed here). But of the new series I think really only House stands out.

Mac-Loving Fanboy Freaks

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I just felt like using that title. Move along, nothing to see here.


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Hi. You found me by smurfing the interweb, or you know me. Just below this post are a couple of "pinned" posts, that I want to keep at the top, either because they're important, or they're particularly useful. Previous pinned posts can be found under the category "Previously Pinned".

After those posts, the rest are arranged as per normal, the latest coming first. You can also browse the most recent posts by the menu on the right, or via categories or by date.

The easiest way to recieve updates is to use my RSS feed, which you can access from your address bar if you're using Opera, or under "syndication" on the bottom right of the main page, or you can just download my Klip to use with Serence's Klipfolio. The search function/local google search both do a rather good job of indexing the site, so they can be useful as well.

If you're new here you might want to take a look at a number of things, for instance the main site page: www.fallingbeam.org, also accessible via the link on the right side menu on the main page. There's also an e-mail link, and a link to the forums.

Comments are enabled on posts, but I moderate all anonymous comments - if you want you can get a TypeKey account, which gets around the need for moderation.

RSS Freedom

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I think I will also consider finding the plugin that allows random entries - make my front page more of a introduction rather than just being the most recent posts. People who actually care or bother would be coming in via the RSS feed anyway, and there's always the Recent Entries thing. And the first pinned post could be a sort of About:Bog thing. Things to be considered.

Mal, Bad, in the Latin

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I've always found the teaser for the Firefly pilot, Serenity, incredibly moving, and endlessly evocative. The clincher though, is Mal walking back in to the cargo hold, "yeah, we win".


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Again, Nice Warez if you can get it. I'm not only using it to control my US comp, but I'm now using it as an extra remote control from my bed to my Shuttle. Now I can seek in WMP. Having my comp next to my bed also means I can now bog from my bedside, even as I smurf the interweb. Yay me.

Back Word

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So the L Word decided to go big? More camp than it used to be, I must say. Director for the first episode doesn't seem too bad though. Huh, no wonder I like him, he directed episodes of Deadwood. I won't hold Six Feet Under against him. Laurel Holloman looks good pregnant. I wonder if they're just unashamed about it, or it was a requirement of the network, that they make the episodes be horny.

Nasi Lemak: East West

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Where: Along Liang Seah Street, closer to Bugis than Shaw Tower.

I really eat here quite a lot. Whenever I want to have rice it's either here or the zha fan stall - but mostly here. I don't normally have the plain rice, prefering to have the nasi lemak. One thing I don't bother with is getting the set meals - it's not quite as worth it and not quite as nice as just picking the stuff you want. If you want stuff from the sets, just add it to your plate.

The best thing by far there is the fried chicken. During major meal times it's available as a side, but if you want the whole hog, ask for the full fried chicken cutlet-ty dish from the menu, and they'll do one for you fresh on the spot. Even then I like to have it with the nasi lemak, and add stuff. Their eggs are not always nice and runny, but they do rather well, the curry chicken is quite nice, if I don't order it more often it's only because it's potentially messy and troublesome. The curry vegetable is similarly a staple. They have these crunchy fried dough things with a sweet topping, that's novel. Of the vegetables the bean sprouts tend to be okay, though I rather like their (not so often available) tofu. There's also a chicken dish in sauce which is rather nice.

It's really rather good, and when you come over I tend to ask you if you like nasi lemak, and this is what I'm referring to. Just don't mistake it for the run of the mill ikan bilis/chili/luncheon meat kind. I don't tend to buy drinks there because I can just walk back. I don't normally bring the economist there since things are ready to be eaten, unless I order the fried chicken. Very very pleasing as lunch, and not at all crowded for dinner.


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It's all kinds of naughty that I'm suddenly drawn to taking a look at Greymatter. It's just that open source blogging software would be that much more likely to be standards compliant yes/no?


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I'm still trying to feel the idea out, not that I've not thought it many times, I'm just thinking how to put it. People who negate incessantly lack a certain imagination, lack a kind of empathy and understanding. I think I just illustrated my own point. I think what I'm trying to suggest is vaguely what I remember from the Chaucer laced introduction I got when I started in York, that humanity encompasses.

It's late, and I should be asleep, but it occurs to me that I need to make something abundantly clear. Desperate Housewives is not, by any bizarre contortion, something that is worth watching.

I had watched the unaired pilot, and while I liked Brenda Strong on Sports Night, Sheryl Lee was so much more resonant in her role. Felicity Huffman I have great admiration for, you only need look at this. But seriously, how much more ass could be sucked by the series?

Now I'm going to stop there, and not allow silly questions like why to mar the fact that even thinking about it makes me want to tickle something.

Okay with the Dancing already.

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Scrubs actually does interesting things with narrative.

I do rather appreciate them using 8 days a week.

I keep forgetting things I want to think and then. And it's not even about what I'm doing, it's just moments of inside pushing out.

I should draw money before I go to get the tickets tomorrow, and remember to write things down.

Not so much, for you, with the talking.


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So *that's* what port is. I'd like to find some, and get some nice cheese. Maybe for after curry.

I get the feeling I need to redo my quickpost link.

Down by the Grapevine

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It's nice, to just sit here and write, Laura Nyro playing in the blackground. It's nice that my speakers are now properly positioned in the room. I think I glory in my disdain for fastidiousness regarding wires. I really need to sleep timely tonight so I can wake up and buy the bus ticket. I hope I get more shirts I'll actually wear.

How handsome my site's become. The CSS fixing of the text sizes was particularly satisfying.

I wonder if I should go ahead to remove the dashes from the bottom of my blogger posts. I wonder whether export would do well moving images - I suppose you'd just put the files in the directory. The replace function would then be able to fix the absolute paths if necessary. Now that I know how, I'm nagged by the desire to export a backup. And the knowledge that phpBB still isn't upgraded. But apparently lots of people put off upgrading web apps - hence the pwning really. Oh, and there's so much crap on my desktop from tweaking.

I love my connection - it's worth a hug. But I'm done tweaking up speed to increase latency, much less to maximise downstream. Fixing it at 40 seems quite reasonable. When I have to adjust it for calls I wonder what I'll do, but probably just do the long way.

I'm concerned that people understand the nature of the pinned posts - that they don't just see that the top post hasn't changed and move on. It'd be nice to be able to set them off somehow, but I can't think of anything pleasing/easy. I suppose it doesn't help that the first view doesn't have a pinned post and a non-pinned post. I suppose the best way of viewing the site would really be through the RSS feed, and perhaps via the monthly archives.

Which reminds me that the google ads would have to be at the bottom of the individual post pages.

What the pinned posts help with is that the front page won't be so empty that way - even when this incontinence stops.

I'm really going to have to find the time to do a little search.ini proselytizing. Things like my own search.ini, ctrl-d, highlight right click etc.

Google Adsense

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I'm considering adding Google ads to the site, just under the "powered by movable type" link on the right. It'd be unobtrusive, and you'd actually have to be vaguely interested in the site to encounter the ads. I'd probably end up having to put ads on the individual archives etc. if only so that people who keep bumping into me via search incur some opportunity cost. I'd probably tailor it to fit in as much to the site as possible. I might then also end up putting links to the actual posts people are looking for - things like finding subtitles etc.

Of course you realise that like all other forms of advertising on this site, it's just for fun - if I actually got any money from any of it I'd be more than surprised. Which is probably why I wouldn't insert adverts into RSS feeds, or those fucking annoying ads that pop up as if they were links in your site text - evil evil evil.

Becks Dark

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You think it still counts as getting sloshed in the middle of the day if you haven't slept all night?

Like Nipples

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Yay, I've fixed the CSS so that those god-damn trackback and comment links aren't so obtrusive, and the side panel is more to my liking. Post titles are also bigger. I was going to mess with the headline, but I'm now quite fond of it wedged in the corner, the lower case making it seem more insignificant.

In other words, isn't my site even more handsome? I get the feeling that using odd values for the width of the panels is making the calender look squashed - I'll have to look in to it, but I'm leaning towards not giving a crap. Or maybe extending the range of the non-background area.

Louis has finally figured out how to pin important entries to the beginning of his bog!!! The required plugin can be found here. Louis is also such a hack at doing these things. But yes, there will now be about 2 pinned posts at the beginning of this page, everything below that is as per normal. Just be glad I didn't refer to them as "sticky".

It is a bit crazy that this requires you to hack around in the templates, but it's done, so I'm not complaining. For those looking at this as trackback, using this is pretty simple - try adding the sample code from the original "MTEntry" post to your Main Index Template - just below the line div class="content". Once you rebuild you'll see how it turns out.

If you want your posts to look like they normally would, just copy and paste everything between the MTEntries tags within MTEntry - it's that simple. If you want more than one post on top, just duplicate. That is my super-inelegant way of doing it. Comment if you need help.


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I'm wondering to myself whether it'd really be better with someone actually teaching me XML, CSS, XHTML etc., or whether I should just go through what W3Schools can give me first. It'd be nice if Movable Type actually managed to be properly validated. But if the courses were anything like the York courses, I'd stab myself - well, a bit anyway.

The question is whether I can be bothered - but really, how long can I put off wanting to do things? Though I don't know how much playing bass is a part of all this. I suppose I'd like to go to a boot camp where I could be made to run every day, play bass and learn proper CSS. I think the problem with the bass is that they're going to want me to learn how to read.

So he really is Irish

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Tara Reid does rather well in Scrubs. How could she have been so much better in the previous season than she was recently? She looked better too.

But Scrubs is also doing quite a bit better with me - I think Janitor is great and Cox is especially fantastic. He's got a weird name, but his voice talent is unbelievable.

Oh, and it's funny.


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I've actually wondered to myself - and quite rightly I must say - that I played at least some part in Opera being so conscientious, in their releases over the past year or so, to release their browser on as many platforms as possible at/around the same time - especially with preview or testing versions. Sure they've been working with a common codebase, but at least someone must have had a mild attack of panic that a news site (even if it is the Inq) would cover a spat attributed to the disenfranchisement of non-windows users.

Actually, I am proud of myself.

Would You Be My Heroine


It popped into my head, walking back, almost 5 in the morning, from the Indian Muslim place, the thought I'd had in my mind for a time a while back. That just like a character in Nella Larson's Passing can say that sex is a cruel joke, I felt that education, at least the education I was afforded, and the promise that was promised, was very much like a cruel joke.

I have a bad habit of taking back statements after I say them - I suppose it's my way of mitigating myself - a personality trait that makes me seem to disavow myself. To be sure statements are not meaning and discourse is not sincerity or feeling, and there is always that portion of existence that quite rightly could do what Jane Campion did in Holy Smoke (BE KIND), but roundness should not be forced like a brick. You really wonder if confrontation isn't.

But maybe a food diary would be less of a *downer* - I even annoy myself when I do that. It's really not about escaping or evading or circumscribing meaning, it's perhaps about conveying extents. Compromise would then be the dirty word.

I Don't Know Much

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According to Scrubs, I'm not the only one that follows people round the apartment endlessly - in a way that could be taken as being incredibly annoying.


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Yeah, I'm now putting that much more consideration into getting a 17 inch LCD. 15 now really seems a bit constrictive - and judging by how I liked 1280 on my CRT, it should be a day at the races. I'm sure someone'll want to get a slightly used and recently repaired LCD for cheap.


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Oh, and just in case you're interested, I have turned on the Creative Commons license that comes with Movable Type, you can have a look at the button for it on the right. It just seems sensible really - I honestly couldn't care less if my writing was circulated for personal use, as long as it was attributed to me. Books are really only useful to me because they're good at what they do. Like a paper subscription to the Economist - it's really a service that I subscribe to. My future publishers take note.

Oh, and Su-lin said spanky to me - I'm very gratified.


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Well, ok, it seems Scrubs season 3 isn't quite as bad as the first couple of episodes promised. And the one playing Jordan (Christa Miller Lawrence) is so lovely she's making me even consider watching the Drew Carey show.

This post also, for better or worse, inaugurates my Television category, especially since now that I've been having this form of blogging diarrhoea for awhile, I've taken to pausing television I like - to write about it.

My food diary is going to have to wait till I next eat.

But yes, I've thus been using Firefox like a bogging application - I think it's quite fitting.


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This is really a bit weird - ever since I've been back, there have been times when there have been bandwidth issues with my p2p apps over Starhub. Download speed doesn't seem to be terribly affected, but upload speed becomes dismal. It's 1 am now, it's probably been going on since midnight. I did a bandwidth test, and bandwidth between here and the dslreports.com test sites is dismal. However the Singapore based Singnet test shows downstream is fine. I suppose I could call tech support, but I'd have to stab myself. Previously I had seen this happening just with eMule, Azureus doing okay - but it would go away. I had also previously recycling power to the modem, and that used to help. But this time, nothing. My IP address never seems to change, so that wouldn't have, historically, been an issue. I can only assume that starhub's infrastructure is still undergoing some work? Especially between Singapore and not-singapore?

And yes, I've confirmed that it is X-Lite starting up with Phoneconnector that's been causing problems. I now startup without X-Lite and manually turn it on. No problems. But they're still so going to fix it.

Just for the fun of it I'm going to point you to where you can find out more about starting a business in Singapore, business.gov.sg.

I'm still waiting on replies to my trackback queries. I suppose I should check in at the Serence forums again.

In a moment of weakness I've now decided to enable comments by default - but I'll probably also turn on the need to approve anonymous comments, so get ready with your typekey accounts. It'd be a chore if I had to keep approving new posts.

Ok: So it appears that it just goes away on it's own - they must have fixed the router or whatever. No need to restart next time then.

Ah hah!

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subtitles: RSS and Economist

So you have to use the bookmarklets in order for trackback to work.

Unfortunately the page is formatted specifically so as to annoy Opera users.

But otherwise: Move Along, Nothing to See Here.

Uh: I just pinged the MT site having posted their url. I'm confused. But at least I know that my auto ping thing is working. Sort of.

Agatha Christie Freaks Unite

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Someone I know might be interested in this: Miss Marple.

The best way to keep track of what's new on the site is to monitor its RSS Feed: http://www.the-realworld.de/TRW.rss

I refer you to my previous post on RSS and Klipfolio.


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I've also decided to enable Trackback, just for the heck of it.

Open Thread

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This is an open thread to test comments. Post away. Tell me how *pretty* my site is. This is just so I can have some entries that are open to comments - basically this will be few and far between (maybe). I'm trying to think what those entries would be, I suppose those like Curry Night below, where a reply would be nice. But then there's messenger and there's e-mail. Whatever.

You can comment anonymously, which means I have to approve each post (I've changed my mind about this, but I might turn this back on later). Otherwise, you need to have a typekey account, which would be useful in the future if you comment in Typepad, Movable Type and LiveJournal blogs. With typekey, I also get an e-mail whenever there's a new comment.

Rip Angel


Jonny Zero might as well put up flyers saying "we help the helpless". They even have their own "Heroes for Hire" flyer. The goofy sidekick is pretty fun though, probably the best thing about the series, since I havent' seem much of the woman. Fox must really think people can't handle being introduced to too many characters in depth one episode after another, for them to so assiduously pack episodes about each character together.

It's not a bad episode as it goes - Peta Wilson (of La Femme Nikita) is pretty good in it, and doped up Jonny is funny.

Naughty Starhub


But yes, my bandwidth is so definitely affected by other users/usage. Either that or eMule has some issues with something. But it can't be coincidence that Saturday morning things slow down. And really generally during the day. Which is annoying because I feel I have to adjust the up speed accordingly so I don't choke the pipe.

I'm sure I've considered this before, but I suppose I could do a review section for the food places round here.

And again it pops into my head to update the IP filters in eMule.

Eric Rice used to be the guy (I suppose he nominally still is) behind most of buffyradio, later slackstreet/showtalkers. He's got a new thing going for a while now called AudioBlog, which is just what it sounds like. Hence the correlation with podcasting. He's supposed to be doing a podcast radio show with Josh AKA Suge White ++ eventually, but knowing these guys' penchant for promising things...

Which brings me to FeedBurner, which is an RSS service that provides stats, etc. It also makes the feed itself look more presentable in browsers amongst other things. My FeedBurner feed is here: http://feeds.feedburner.com/Subtitles. I'll probably play around with it for a bit before using it as my klip url - if only for the stats I suppose. Doesn't seem to fix the paragraph break problem, but hopefully the Serence people can help with that.

On the other hand, I'm not sure I'm that wild about giving Feedburner that much publicity, it really isn't offering *that* much. And the image links it provides are just downright ornery, they don't align properly, and they're pretty ugly. I'm really not sure adding them to my klip would really add value. I'm definitely not going to put advertising in the feed.

While Watching


I really like Sully going "crap". Faith is really so cool as a detective now, getting to dress up nicer and wearing her hair down, very fetching. And regular doctor woman and being so coy and struck with Neal McDonough; very lovely girlish fangirl moment. Wyclef Jean is absolutely *awful*.

Klip Updating Fixed


As of 1.2, my klip updates correctly. In order to get 1.2, which will update by itself in the future, click on the klip button on the right. Thanks to the people at the Serence forums, the actual post that discusses the functionality is here.

Oh, and the link for Opera is now fixed - it sends you to the download page, but it also gives you my reference no. I'm still not that sure it works, but it's the principle of it. For a while I had forgotten to put in my ID no. which means I was doing it in vain. Not that that's not what I'm doing now.

Pin, LCD for sale


It'd really be nice if you could pin particular posts, but whatever, Curry Night is below. I'm really going to contact Eugene's friend and get my bass fixed. Anyone interested in buying my 15" CMV LCD is welcome of make me an offer. I bought it for about $400, but now it retails for about $350 I think, if not less. I'd give it up for a sensible price, and there'd still be time left on the warranty.

I suppose categories are a bit useless. Unless you wanted to make a specialy branch, which never really panned out for me.

I'm getting more impressed with Broadvoice. From my extensive trial with Michel, it seems to have the better voice quality compare to Skype, at least going from phone to broadvoice. I'd have to actually be on the other end to know what it's like, but it's probably not quite as good. But I suppose that's what you get from using a higher quality codec. And I'm at least still able to run eMule at 10kb/s up while the call is going on.

Phoneconnector is still a bit sluggish in responding when I recieve certain calls, it can take up to 3 or 4 rings on X-Lite to make Phoneconnector respond. The problem being that until the phone starts ringing, I can't seem to just pick up and have the call be answered. Changing the setting to "none" for the ringing thing from USB doesn't seem to have changed much. I'd know more, but I haven't yet restarted, and probably don't intend to. I should really under clock my US comp, but that'd be tricky.

I wonder what Karen's been up to.

Have I mentioned how pretty my blog is? :) And I've tidied up the location of my Opera and Klip buttons on the right, the pyramid thing really wasn't doing it for me. If only Broadvoice would learn some subtlety in its button making.

I wonder if anyone would buy Broadvoice kit from me if I peddled it. I'm sure if I could catch the US university-going crowd, or even the UK ones, I'd make a killing. Parents would probably be the easiest marks there... There'd end up being quite a few US local phone numbers here. Like they say there are in India, I suppose. Pity there doesn't seem to be any noticeable VOIP provider in Singapore - it'd make the most sense for people going overseas to want to preserve a Singapore telephone number. Though for students behind fascist networks, that might be a problem. I suppose I could ask Leong if he's interested. I'm sure Pan-Asian VOIP solutions would do really rather well - as long as they were price competitive. I should have a look around again I suppose. Here'd be a place to start looking I suppose, but I don't remember them being terribly promising from what I saw.

Louis also went for more Strudel. Middling at best, really.

Curry Night

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I will now moot the idea of a Curry Night. There's this rather nice North Indian Curry place near Sim Lim that Winston showed me, and it's quite good. Also I think it has discounts if you use a DBS of POSB card - and I was going to apply for a membership that wouldn't require that anyway. The naan is plentiful, and the curry is surprisingly filling for the ostensible size of the serving containers.

And well, the fish-head place downstairs is now closed, and steamboat isn't really my bag. There's air conditioning at the curry place, and it'd be like Symrin again. My ever friendly e-mail link is on the right, but obviously the people I'm thinking of would just message me.

By the way the place is called:

Shish Mahal
180 Albert Street
#01-03 Albert Court Hotel and Mall
Singapore 189971
Phone : 68373480

No Wonder Sabrina Lloyd


Lesli Linka Glatter directed this episode of Numb3rs, which might be promising. She really does tend to direct one of the virtual pilots for the series she works on. I do rather like her work, and it's promising so far, despite the series. She particularly seems to be drawn to using Sabrina Lloyd really well, and making her interesting, but then I suppose that's what they bring her in to do. There also is as I'm sure I've commented on before, a kind elegance and a lovely tattoo pace to her episodes, very fluid, very eloquent. Though I think the moral of her is that it's difficult to transcend the series itself. Surprising that she never worked on Sports Night, so really this would be the first time I know of that she would have directed Sabrina Lloyd.

I suppose what I'm trying to say is that if you're going to watch any episode of Numb3rs, I'd strongly suggest (without having finished watching the episode) that you start with this one. Oh, and Doogie Howser guest stars.

I suppose I should stop posting TV stuff like this under the Personal category, but I'd not look forward to having to recategorise my mountain of previous posts. And really, up till recently, the TV one have been rather fitting in Personal, which, I suppose, is the point.

Typing is lovely in making you realise you have to cut your nails.

But oh my the interweb hax0r stuff is incredibly horrible. Sabrina Lloyd looks really good in her FBI getup and doing cop raid stuff though.



I've probably become too stuck in my ways, and have decided that eventually I need to look into other P2P networks. Gnutella 2 is supposed to be good, supposedly Shareaza is spyware free. DC++ is also quite lauded. Ares got mentioned but has spyware, from what I'm told.

Still need to get around to updating the forum. Or not.

Whatever it is I do seem to be endlessly chatty of late, who knows how long that'll last. Probably till another equilibrium break occurs.

Firefox CSS ad-blocking

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I've been talking about this to people, so here it is. It really is very idiot proof, just follow the instructions.

It blocks most ads, though probably not with the finality that Proxomitron does - but Proxo is anything but idiot proof. The downside is that you have to use Firefox. Well, the day will come when Opera will support those CSS extensions (or whatever). Maybe IE7 will help push for that - though ad-blocking in IE7 might never happen - besides I don't think style sheets would be a priority for IE anyway.

And yes, I think Eugene might be interested in Camino, a Gecko based Mac browser that is native and thus a bit prettier. It'll be on Mozilla.org.



Louis was being nothing but accurate in thinking that opening that bottle of wine would mean he'd be drinking most of it. I'm not sure if it's just a Bordeaux thing, but the hangover from even that isn't bad by any means.

My blog's pretty :). The post editing page as well is really rather pleasing. Again the flit of wondering about comments, but the lack of them and the passing nature of them would really get me down. It really brings out the rather unattractive side of Louis, being that kind of needy.

But yes, I suspect that 2000 Bordeaux doesn't really agree with me, either that or my tastes have changed a bit. I'll see if the other bottle's any good. Still nicer than beer, I must say. I think if I had gotten the 6-pack of Corona that would have been a bit much. Stella, Becks, Guiness and Corona seems a broad enough spectrum to me. Should get a few more of the Becks Dark though.



Having gone through all that, I feel at sort of a loss what do write about. I'm very tempted to go ahead and play around with installing the newer version of PHPBB, but I'm just not that anxious to do it. It'd be a drag if I had to fiddle too much with it. I suppose I could turn comments on, but that's not going to happen. I think for me I'd be pretty happy knowing, as I know now, that most people either don't read this, or don't really care. And honestly, people with anything interesting to say can just message me rather than cluttering this place up. And well, there's the spam which I'm avoiding, which is always nice.

Oh, I finally got rid of the festering sore that was the phpnuke bits on the Opera site, honestly I quite like that my hosting provider is self-interested enough to know what's causing them problems, and that they can tell me about it.

I suppose I could do a category to would be a kind of Opera news blog, but I'm sure that's done. I could also give a go to using blogger for the purpose I suppose. Off to the fan site listing I go.

Or I could just go to Opera Watch, which seems to do quite a good job at what it names itself. Pretty partisan by its tone, but we'll see. Posting using Firfox, or really, using Firefox just to post, isn't too awful. Hopefully Opera puts in document.selection by the end of the Opera 8 development cycle.



I appear to be as done as I want to be at the moment. My links are done, the RSS feed has been changed, you can get the new klip from the klip button. I'm not sure why it's not updating automatically. I've decided the Opera button will now point to the download page.

Must remember to check up on my stats, and protect the folder.



Oh my. I've just upgraded fully to Movable Type 3.15!!!

Better yet, I've even been able to import (finally) my blogspot entries, so it's all together now in this one place. The last post was just for completeness, I'm now sticking with MT 3. Okay now to finish things up, I'm still going to have to fix things like links and the RSS feed.




I've been spending the past couple of hours playing around with Movable Type 3. Long story short you can have a look at it here. The annoying thing is that I'll probably not move over because the month archives don't come out right - also I still don't have formatting tools in Opera (*Firefox* does though) which is embarassing since even Blogger has got them now for Opera.

And honestly, I don't see that much of a difference, other than the new styles, which I have to hack rather relentlessly for them to be worth a damn, and which are otherwise quite limited. Thankfully security isn't an issue since I don't bother with comments.

After that I had the pleasure of finding out more about how X-Lite and Phoneconnector don't kiss nice. I'm sure Phoneconnector's tech support are going to get right on it. There's a workaround, but it's annoying and repetitive.



This is from a few days back, but it seems to me that most of the narratives I've seen that deal with kidnapped babies tend to deal, in some way or other, with the narrative of the Lindbergh Baby. Not to mention Donna's dirty secret.

The thing with Will Bailey and Donna is getting me a bit flabbed.



Because of my recent penchant for posting banners etc. here's one for you:

mininova: the ultimate BitTorrent source

Unfortunately, if you use Proxomitron like I do, you'll see a blank space.

I weighed whether to make my Opera buttons (which now also occur at the bottom of every page) point to a page other than the "buy opera so they pay me licensing page", but then I figured that the banner in and of itself is advertising already, so the link isn't that big a deal.

Fictional State


Okay, so the West Wing is trying its best to tread as lightly as possible between "keepin it real" and ga-ga-land fantasy. It's okay, and it really does seem like such a small step to take.

I'm now officially wondering whether VOIP is worth it. The problem with BroadVoice and X-Lite is that it requires a hell of a lot of bandwidth, so I effectively have to shut down Azureus just to get decent clarity - though apparently it does end up being the best voice quality possible. The problem with Skype and Phoneconnector is that it's not as idiot proof, even though it does seem much more efficient and probably more forgiving of bandwidth sqeezing.

I might give Skype the chance of running without Azureus - but there's still the issue of the USB port fucking up.

But having now discovered that rates have gone up to 10c a minute to the US, all this just seems like teeth.



I wondered to myself for just a moment before being safe and registering with Do Not Call regardless. There's actually a rather happy way to find out my phone no. without asking. Just hover. But yes, Louis did a little broadside html hacking to put advert links more prominently. I suppose I should move the Klip link higher, but I figure it's fitting where it is, and people who don't read beyond the first entry aren't likely to be bothered anyway.

Sygate Begone.


Ok, so I'm not saying that Sygate is Evil, I'm just saying that it can fuck more things up than it really fixes. As usual any security issues I thought I had was just so much paranoia. At some point I think I'll uninstall ETrust, but it's supposed to be harmless. The MS Spyware detector is okay, so whatever. I've just left Sygate off, so I can be paranoid in the future. And yes, it was Skype that opened up port 443, god knows why it chooses that.

The real problem with Sygate on was that CPU usage spikes. But more importantly it fucked up the latency for VOIP, so Skype was fucking up (it's not so great anyway) and then it led to BroadVoice fucking up. Lots of fucking up for paranoia. The XP firewall is admirably admirable.

I'm getting too happy with drama for headlines. Thought the next logical step is outre Inquirer-land. Smurfing... hilarious.



I've signed up, so I now have a US telephone no. which you can have if you ask. Haven't had much time to fiddle with it, but it works, so yay. You can use this link if you want to sign up yourself. There's a referral program, but the buttons they have available are really annoying so I'll probably put a text link somewhere when I can be bothered. Apparently that link only works with Firefox and IE. I've complained to Broadvoice about it, as well as about their inadequate browser sniffing.

Aztec, Two-Step, Turandot

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Someone clever decided to post a list of overlaps between Sports Night and West Wing. I'm gonna e-mail them with ones I think they missed. Eventually.

Fighting about "going to the hot club"

In both series, relationships break up over the guy being too boring/serious, and the woman wanting too much to be exciting, and go out, be seen, go to the right club etc.

In Sports Night this is what breaks up Natalie and Jeremy in Dana Get Your Gun. On West Wing, this is the background story of Sam breaking up with his fiance Lisa Sherborne in 100,000 Airplanes.

This other one I need to tidy up:

With regards to fathers' adultery as discussed here there's also another theme that runs through boths episodes, that both episodes mention maritime, or celestial navigation (a theme repeated in the title of the WW episode "Celestial Navigation"). Both episodes refer to finding out about the father's adultery as changing everything, and this is compared to something as fundamental as maps changing, or in Jeremy's case, wanting to find out how something happened. This is echoed in Natalie breaking down to Isaac ("And the Crowd Goes Wild) about Jeremy wanting to get his stuff back, and giving the tape to the police, as violating a fundamental principle.



And so Louis is not crazy, and Diane Warren did write a song for Chicago based on her overhearing a divorced couple (or some such). Look Away. I'm just wondering now who "Don't Turn Around" was originally written for - I suspect that it's Ace of Base, but that blows my mind, and Aswad?

Die Mac Mini, Die.

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Since I'm doing this for Eugene right now, I offer this to all comers. A cheap, small, reasonably fast computer. The idea is to offer something that will keep people from the delusion that is the Mac Mini.

AOpen SFF system: $365
Sempron 2600+: $149
2x256 DDR 400: $140
250 gig hard drive: $260
BenQ DW1620 DVD-Writer: $130

This is a pretty good recent generation processor (like the G4), but with double the RAM, 6x the storage, and DVD writing. Software, of course, is free. All for about $895. A mac mini costs $928. If you added the ram, added a much slower Superdrive, and got a mere 80 gig, it would cost $1348.

In both cases you'll still have to supply a keyboard, monitor and mouse.

The AOpen is one of the prettier SFF systems - but best of all it has built in graphics, GeForce 4 MX, granted (which is less powerful that the mac mini), but that just means you can tack on more later. And it's so cheap I could spit. IGP means that you can't clock more than 333mhz, and unfortunately that's what the Sempr0n is at already, so if you want to overclock, you'll have to get a discrete graphics card. If you want to get similar performance to a Mac Mini, you can try this:

GeForce 5500 128ram DVI/Tv-out $105 (This can go much higher, depending what you want)

But remember, the IGP already comes with dual monitor and S-Video. You could even go for more RAM instead of better graphics, if gaming isn't the biggest issue.

Caveats include the fact that you can't add extra internal hard drives, but that's the same with the mac. No DVI with the IGP.

Louis takes no commission. This is a public service. I'd probably charge if you were a friend of a friend though.

MSN Messenger Beta

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I hate nothing more than people who use their "usernames" on MSN to put anything other than their name. Thankfully, the new beta shows that Microsoft feels my pain. You can actually broadcast a headline along with your username, as a kind of subtitle. Hopefully, i won't need to keep having to view contacts by e-mail address. You also get more integration of the avatar into the contact list, so you see thumbnails which can be small or large. I enlarged my contact list just to take advantage of this - it's a nice touch.

These are links to places that will give you everything you need, the installers, and patches to get rid of all the crap. This is a leaked beta, and you should know what you're doing if you want to install it. www.mess.be www.mastaline.com

MPAA FUD-spreading liars: who knew?




Getting more convinced that DVD rips aren't the same quality as HD rips. Finding Aphex Twin rather convincing. Ambient thing seems rather enjoyable, and quiet without being melancholy, which is a plus. Now starting to wonder if getting Boomtown was a mistake. More and often. Perhaps. Some things, however, are just too scribbly, and you get the feeling that you're just scratching.

My Wedding Day


I suppose I could write about the vague watchability of Boomtown, mostly because of the parables it spins. Just tad. I've just said that I've been trying to watch funnier things recently, and that's pretty true. The noodle place people recognise me now. It's probably worse at night with no people and no activity. And if I shower now, I won't sleep for a while yet, which doesn't seem so attractive to me. But my Lacey Chabert's grown up into a babe hasn't she? Less distinctive features, but such come hither hair. Though really it just might have been the same strategy as Mary McCormack, being Mary Louise Parker. Bonnie Hunt just seems so rife with insecurity, an ooze of vulnerability.

Totem: Drink my daddy's wine




I just realised there's probably a reason that the MPAA put its prints all over lokitorrent.com and torrentstop.com (the subsidiary), but you just get a plain old 404 on mufftorrent.com.

Slashdot: Opera Fastest Browser


Gasp. Where have all the Firefox Fanboys gone? To bite my shiny metal ass.

RSS and Economist

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Just to inform people who don't already know, RSS stands for, amongst other things Really Simple Syndication. It basically allows you to read newsfeeds, to view headlines and some extra text, normally with a link to the full story etc. That's not it's only use, it does many things, including notification of new torrents/blog posts etc.

The RSS feed for my blog is this: http://blog.fallingbeam.org/blog/index.rdf

Though you could have found that at the bottom right of the main blog page, under syndication.

A convenient way to read RSS feeds is to use Opera, which uses its mail client to read feeds. 8 Beta even notifies you in the address bar when a page has a feed. Personally I prefer Klipfolio, made by Serence. I even have my own customised Klip (also linked on blog and site front pages). You can add any feed url you want to Klipfolio by making copies of Feed Viewer. Klipfolio has tonnes of preset and ready made klips for things from weather, stocks, news, to Hotmail/Gmail inbox feeds etc.

TVtorrents, at www.tvtorrents.ws or www.tvtorrents.tv (currently, they keep moving), has its own custom app to auto download and launch torrents, TVTAD. If you need another reason I use it instead of btefnet (if both have it) is that tvtorrents tends to only release torrents that are very well seeded as a opposed to just releasing them fast.

The Economist has added it's own RSS feeds just recently. I wonder if the ad-viewing free full access is still in effect.

Suspicious minds think that CNY has proved that cable speed/latency is dependent on the number of users, because there's been quite a bit of crawling from people being home, which alleviates in the wee.

Very Not Laura Nyro


It's just that she uses her sentiment like a bludgeon. Fair enough it's not Alanis, but still annoying. That and the gameshow music.

Wedding Bell Blues


And so the mysticism of Laura Nyro. From what I can hear she seems to be the Carole King of something, her renditions just quiet, sincere, clenching, not the same kind of spunk you hear with the ones that hit. It's probably not more than inevitable that the picting of it should come about, Amy Sherman and Aaron Sorkin, like a ball. It's a kind of plaintive wondrousness to discover these tiny stitchings, when the fabric is blanket and wrapped to everyone else perhaps. And particularly that the scriptor would have been obscured herself by aforementioned spunk. It's a kind of tugging, a kind of happy happy tugging, glad. I suppose a mention of basket weaving would not be out of place in all this. Layers and reusing of old whiskey to retain consistency. Listening with your spine.

Bang the Gong


Sophia Bush and Kristen Bell really look spookily like each other. If only it was called Hermione. Foghat rocks. Seoul Raiders was pretty awful. And like I told Winston, second day's a charm. Someone really needs to assure me that it's not the bloody drivers, and that the underclocking is making things better.

Bite The Drama


Oh my. Marti Noxon must be as concerned with ratings as much as she is with comedy. There's only one word to describe how bad it is. Charmed.

The girl girl dynamic isn't even as interesting or arresting as Hex. The non-blonde one is even slightly better than the locus, but they're all too pretty and blank.

Louis got pwn3d


It was probably the naughty beta (the one that was withdrawn) of MSN messenger 7.



How many times to they need to get shot? How much trauma do they have to go through? Someone must really have realised that the most fun you can have is people shooting each other up.



Ok, wow. They really pulled out all the stops for these guys leaving the series. The Doc thing is absolutely breathtakingly distancing and powerful. Bang. Though really, all the people who are good looking enough to still have a career must have decided to leave.

But really, somewhere along the line someone must have realised that there's only so much you can do with fire, so now it's a cop show with paramedics.

Call for Help


Well, apparently there are reasons why some people get to executive produce. Edward Allen Bernero is now interesting to me. The episode was really rather good, not exactly real-time, but done in extended long shots, nicely timed for the ads. Very detective fiction, and really rather lovelily put together. I suppose if I have to show anyone an episode of Third Watch, this would be it. I wonder if they ask very conscientiously for the actors to retain some fashion of how they speak, because the actors seem to talk a particular way, particularly pronounced with Davis and Monroe.

This really did seem to have a kind of lyricism about it, not surprisingly it felt very much like Before Sunset. What I'd take issue with is the symmetry of the dialogue, too neat, too closed off, too bookended and deliberately and contrivedly rambly - like the establishing and closing shots etc.

Yeah, apparently they just needed to get their stride back, took them till mid-season though.

Oh, and Mimi Leder's episodes of Jonny Zero (actually, most of that show so far) has been so absolutely disappointing. Especially for the fact that they're trying to be Angel, with Burly Guy in need of Redemption, Mouthy Sidekick, and Rescued Girl. The direction relied too much on very blarey music, and felt too much like an action film.


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5th season third watch is a bit poor. I'm going to say they do rather unearned things, and that they try to "dig deep" in to the concept - but just for perspective I used to say that about Aaron Sorkin's West Wing season premieres. It's nice though, following through on a big narrative, a very large tattoo.

I suppose I shouldn't feel funny about people feeling sorry for me - I feel sorry for me :P. I really shouldn't start writing when I'm going to be distracted.

But really, after you hear John Wells (or whoever) talking about how after a while you have to stir the pot, it makes the stirring a bit contrived. And you'd think that there should never be such a thing as a transitional season, though that's what West Wing 5 was, that's what this season feels like. Also the meshing is starting to get really contrived.

Maybe it's just the start of season blues, along with the new, and not terribly engaging, characters. Tia Texada was much more fun when she first came on, and Nia Long is just so yawn inducing it's not true. Also the police storylines can begin to feel like they dominate, probably because they have that much more scope in many ways.

Mary McCormack was really rather fun on Celebrity Poker Showdown. She, like Mary Louise Parker, have people to thank.

Oh, and Jennifer Paige may be coming out with a new album eventually, having moved to the south etc. Yahoo search is good in that they tend to return the official page first.

It's spelt with an E


I get the feeling it would have been an interesting and probably fittingly dramatic feature project, but as a series it seems to stumble quite badly. Sabrina Llyod is still quite fetching, but...



I've just discovered this lovely site devoted to the Yokas-Boscorelli relationship. Apparently these people refer to themselves as "shippers".

Yahoo Search isn't bad. It's currently replaced my default search from that other search that's getting backlashed as of now. Opera's editable search.ini is a god-send, as it the search.ini editor - both of which are easily searched for. I'm tired of opening movable type in IE, so I've taken to using Opera's notes to manually edit links.

The Doors


So just to say, if people want to find solace from Chinese New Year, they're welcome to come over. Just remember that you will be required you to bring oranges to bai the stately and matriarchal Prudence. One in each paw. Plenty of prata and mee goreng.

Castles of Sand


I like Faith being special. I suppose it's all a lot more entertaining that I gave it credit for, as long as you get into it. Carlos was pretty Peep Show, but he was undoubtly effective, and not just a little funny a lot of the time.

SOTU Taunting


Those fingers were gloating, not the expression of anything other than spite and bile. Whether wagging or flipping. It's honestly almost obscene that they should feel the need to abuse symbols in this way.

Gryphon House


The gadding tourists abound Beach Rd make me wish I was back in Boston.



I just had a dream about the Britney Spears dating reality show. It seemed to be a continuation of something. I wasn't doing too well. My father was there somehow trying, on the train, to get his laptop online. I had an overly intellectual conversation with her and it seemed to go really badly, particularly when she didn't quite get me and she didn't know the word "visceral". Apparently Harvey Weinstein was the one producing the show. I also kept being castigated for not taking out my sheets in the morning, so much that I was fined for it later. I had left for some reason and come back to the midst, only find things had changed, and I had to catch up on my journal writing for her. After dozing I went to get paper from the room. In doing so I stumbled upon one of the guys making out with another girl, probably part of the show, an assistant of Britney's. I persisted, however in getting the paper, then told them to carry on. Later I realised that there had been a sock on the door and I had been too sleepy or something to notice. The guy got kicked off. Reminds me of barging into the greek guy's room with his hot girlfriend naked under the sheets, trying to get rizla. The bizarre shift was when we were suddenly in a kind of forum or tribunal questioning a killer, when the guy next to me said, I'm gonna kill him, kill you, then kill myself. I didn't quite hear him, so I asked him to repeat himself, and while he was doing that I wrestled the gun from his hands.

This probably goes up there with the -- as slayer dream.



My apartment smells like fabric softener.

Pretty flowers


And so perhaps Louis should do a kind of TV diary for each day, since that is what Louis does the most each day here.

Currently in freeze frame is the SI Swimsuit Model Search, the (probably) penultimate episode, and I find that they're making me root for Alicia - in a way that says to me this is the choice they want me to make, by stating that clear preference and portraying her narrative as the most compelling. And in such a way that doesn't make me think it's a fake-out. And looking at the shoots, I probably agree.

Project Runway isn't online, but the pictures on the website paint quite nicely the USPS thing that happened, and Austin making his model debut.

Just to mention though, that Louis has reorganised his room, so that the dining table is now right next to the bed, ready to be pulled out for mahjong etc. and the couch is now nearer the kitchen. Most important is that now the route to the toilet is no longer one that has to be traversed with such care.

State of the Union was a bit too showy for me, too much staged, which made the moving portions all the more alienating in retrospect. Immigration is something he seems genuinely to be standing up for, and he did a good job of articulating the need for Social Security reform. The vision of smaller government came out well. The layout of the Democratic response was a bit bizarre.

I'm considering whether to go for another 15" LCD, or should I already be thinking the prices of the 17s are good enough. I'm looking at the entry level 17" DVI from Viewsonic at $469 (all in Sing), or the 15 from Acer at about a hundred dollars less. It would seem to make sense to go for the 17, but first I have questions about how the desktop would span between resolutions, and really, if the S-Video will just clone, whether it's worth it at all to go ahead. Though I really should RMA the CMV one before it's too late. I'll probably just go and take a look at them and make a decision.

Just in passing, Last Train was a bit too reliant on it's OTT scoring, and was very radio watching. Third Watch season 3 similarly.


Peep Show

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Apparently someone's discovered that self-immolation is funny. All MS all the time. TV Tome, and Channel 4.

How fucked up is the American version going to be?

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