Sunday, September 04, 2005

Fireworks decennial applet

Fireworks decennial applet
It has been ten years since the original fireworks applet.

At the time, it was great, but now I could do better. Thus, the decennial edition :)



Saturday, September 03, 2005

Shock Level Four

Just taste the title.

Then rush to and educate yourself. If you're lucky you will recognize the singularity when it happens. Perhaps you will even exist afterwards.

Otherwise, enjoy one of the most sarcastic and quick mailing lists in existence.


Saturday, July 23, 2005

Dave McKean behind the Mirror Mask

I don't know about you, but I have been waiting for McKean's transfer to the silver screen for years. Years and years and year and years.

Narnia, eat your heart out.


Friday, July 22, 2005

V for Verifiable

All is completed. It still remains to see who's behind the mask and if hir has anything to say.


Thursday, July 21, 2005

First Prime Factorization Post

This week's mystery: How did the /. user with the name


manage the trick? And I must confess, this is the first time I ever moderated posts as "funny".


Friday, July 08, 2005

names and magic

Your name gives people control over you.

Read any magic, fantasy, or fairy tale story, and the this will be repeated in absurdum. Most states also subscribes to this theory.

Is it true? Does your name hold any special powers, and if so, what kind of powers?

Of course, this is utterly nonsense, but there is still something odd going on. What is a name? Really? Please tell me.


Wednesday, June 29, 2005

League of Extraordinary Gentlemen vol II vs War of the Worlds

As some of you might have noticed, the movie adaption of Alan Moore's The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen vol I, stunk. Really. (the comic itself was OK, but not great)

However, timed with Spielberg's bombastic War of the Worlds, I really must recommend the comic

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen vol II

available from DC.

This is simply the best adaption of Well's War of the Worlds I have ever seen. The characters now has real depth and the plot twists and turns in a reality almost-but-not-identical-to-what-you-imagined.

Even the previously kind of annoying Jekyll/Hyde now is believable and nasty bordering on scary. The graphics are suitable dark, and there are dialogue you can read over and over and over.

And it has an ending that once and for all proves mankinds supremacy, in the most evil way ever imagined.

Read it.


Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Pope is a paper doll!

Inspired by Björn, long-time author of the Pope is a chicken, I created an interactive variant, the Pope is a paper doll, by cutting and pasting parts from Björn's excellent drawings.



Sunday, June 12, 2005

Shaxbeard in hex

Suddenly, I realized that FF16 could be considered a joke with a slight literary reference. I doubt this will have any serious implications on the world.


Saturday, June 11, 2005

Twenty years of software development

I've been programming since I was fifteen. That's twenty years now. And the single most useful piece of code has always been....

...tada...a string replace function.

A Java implementation can be found here. Most of the lines are comments.


Monday, May 16, 2005

Påven är en kyckling

[today is Swedish only]

Påven ligger etta på Google!

Friday, May 06, 2005

August Kobb's nose

A long-time Gothenburg tradition is to make the short vertical detour to the monument of August Kobb, the founder of the Slottsskogen park.

Just speed up, run vertically about two meters, touch his nose, and voila!

You're the happiest guy alive!


PS. August Kobb is located between 9 and 21 in this map.

OUD #3 - inversion

It has been pointed out to me that the inverted OUD exists, i.e, when you must register your name if it's available.

According to me, this is just another symptom of OUD, not an inversion ;)


Monday, May 02, 2005

Nokia 7280 - review

My background image on the 7280 - Kattresan by Ivar AronseniusI actually bought Nokia's one-of-a-kind phone, the lipstick Nokia 7280 in January. There seems to be a gimmick of not keeping them in store, rather you have to order it. Part of the "exclusiveness" image, I guess.

Anyway, I have now been using as my daily phone for some months, So I can attempt to give it a fair review.


The phone simply has gorgeous looks. It fits well in both your pocket and dangling in the included leather strap, although I have noticed some wear and tear on the strap. So, not perfect in details. It's definetely an attention-grabber. If you haven't checked out the images, do it now.

Included in the package is Nokia's Windows PC Suite + software for Mac OS X. I have only tested the Windows software. The installation sucks, since it by some strange reason uses Flash for the initial part. Fortunately, you don't really need the software since the phone supports Bluetooth for normal usage, as contacts and files.

You also get som extra hardware; a pair of white headphones (required for the built-in FM radio), a leather wrapper for protecting the phone, and two (!) odd metal cylinders with a pin to eject the SIM card holder. You might as well use a paper clip ;)

The battery is not removable except at a service center. This is annoying since there is no good way of doing a hard reset -- which I, as somewhat paranoid person, want to do sometimes. I also assume this will create an extra cost when/if you need to change the battery.


This phone has no numeric keypad. Instead it has three soft buttons, one scroll wheel, a dial button and a hang up button. It has no "directional" buttons.

Otherwise, it's a quite standard Nokia series 40 phone, that is, the menus are very similar to models like the 6610, 3310 and friends. The soft buttons works as expected and the scroll wheel is used to navigate menus and lists. No real surprises here.

In normal dial-up usage, where you select from your list of contacts this works well. Press the soft button for Contacts, scroll to the name (yes, a fast-mode based on first letter is available) and press dial-up. Same for the common task of re-dialing.

Entering new numbers and text messaging takes more work, but is fully doable. However, my SMS rate has been at least halfed using the 7280.

The display has a wide-screen aspect, so using the XHTML browser for surfing is troublesome. Pages won't never fit, even though the rendering is good. Lots of scrolling is necessary.

The phone camera is fair, but not great. The construction in itself is good since the lens is protected by the sliding hull, but indoor images tend to be quite dark and grainy. There is a definite interface design mistake in not starting the camera as soon as the sliding hull is opened. Instead you have to make at least two button clicks to start it. Adding and sending images using MMS is straightforward.

Answering calls can be done either by sliding open the hull or pressing the dial-up/answer button. The ring tone volume is a bit on the low side due to the single-output speaker construction. If this is blocked, like in your pocket, the sound is heavily muted.

Voice activation

In my opinion this doesn't work. I succeded to get a hit-rate of about one out of three, which is way to low. Using the menus are much easier and faster. On the positive side is that quite a lot of functions can be voice-controlled, not just dial-up.

Tech and build

It's debatable if the 7280's software is 100% bug free (my unit has software version 3.22, new units should have 3.24). After continuous usage, the MP3 playback seems to crash, and it has happened that the screen starts to blink oddly.

The physical build is somewhat squeeky, but still holds after 5 months of daily scrathing and tearing. Since the screen is mirrored even tiny scratches tend to be visible. But it actually took some hard and sharp keys to make this happen.

The screen is very good indoors, but really sucks in sunshine. The mirroring seems to block almost all of the backlight. Be prepared to shadow the phone to use it in sunshine.


The 7280 is a competent indoor phone dressed in a lovely skin.
The phone actually works well as a phone. Text and number input is slow, but most other operations work fast. And it is great for party show-off ;)

Random facts
  • Tri-band, GPRS
  • No Java (whetever anyone tries to tell you!)
  • SMS, MMS
  • Plays MP3 files as ring tones and messaging tones
  • FM radio
  • Bluetooth (headset audio, serial port, OBEX push, OBEX file transfer)
  • 50 meg internal memory
  • The user cannot replace the battery
  • Shortish battery life. About four days in normal usage.
  • Speaker phone (surprisingly good for music too)
  • Shows animated GIFs (also as backgorunds)

Sunday, May 01, 2005

OUD #2 - generik

I'm wrong -- of course, no-one will ever start using non-unique names in the real world. The basic idea of names is to feel like you belong with your friends, not to to use as lookup in a database table.

...that's probably why I, and the rest of the Eriks where I work, have a generik@<...> mail alias. Yes, it might be even more fun using proper English spelling, but I think you get the idea.


Thursday, April 28, 2005

OUD #1

I confess to suffer from a strong obsessive username disorder.

Because of this, I shun all services where I cannot have my traditional username 'wistrand'.

Ironically, this means this blog. It also puts me into a very ambivalent attitue towards gmail, since some fiend (quite possibly myself some years ago) already have allocated my username at google.

My very simple prediction, and solution to the problem, is that people will stop using non-unique names in the real world.