‘The suspect had the stolen goods in his mouth’

typed for your pleasure on 30 July 2006, at 12.44 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Yoshino no yamazakura’ by Merzbow

Awwww!


Do not be fooled – this is the face of a kitty petty criminal

Feline stealing gardening gloves of Pelham
By JIM FITZGERALD, Associated Press Writer | Fri Jul 21, 4:13 AM ETPELHAM, N.Y. – A pink and white gardening glove was missing from Jeannine Goche’s front porch. But there was absolutely no mystery about who had taken it.

Willy, the cat who loves gloves, had struck again.

“It has to be him,” Goche said. “I’ve heard about him.”

As if the gardeners of Pelham don’t have enough to worry about, with the rocky soil and the slugs and the big trees that cast too much shade, a feline felon has been sneaking into their backyards and carrying off at least two dozen gardening gloves.

Goche’s flower-patterned glove may soon take its place on the clothesline that’s strung across the front fence at Willy’s home in this village just northeast of New York City, which he shares with Jennifer and Dan Pifer, their 19-month-old son, Hudson, and a mutt named Peanut Chew.

Above the line is a sign that says: “Our cat is a glove snatcher. Please take these if yours.”

Nine pairs of gardening gloves and five singles were strung up Thursday morning. Willy, looking innocent, was playing with a beetle in the driveway and occasionally dashing after Hudson.

“This all started about the time people began working in their gardens, I guess March or April,” Jennifer Pifer said. “Willy would just show up with a glove, or we’d see them on the front steps. I guess it’s better than if he was bringing home dead birds.”
the rest of the article is here

Now show me a cat that steals bras and knickers, and I’ll be super-impressed

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An improvement on the Gravity gun

typed for your pleasure on 29 July 2006, at 2.05 am

Sdtrk: ‘Baby portable rock’ by Pizzicato five

This accursed heat and humidity is quite literally cooking me where I stand. It’s either making me lazy, or cranky, or lazy and cranky. Or sweaty. None of those states are an option.
So in the interim, you’ll have to settle for this as a post: after we watched my copy of the first series of ‘Look around you‘ (brilliant show, highly recommended), Derek showed me the trailer for the game ‘Portal’ last night whilst I was round to his, and it’s pretty fecking incredible.

It’s made by Valve, the people who created the Half-life series of video games. The graphics and concept are very ace, I have to say, but I could never actually play something like that. Apart from more than likely having to splash out for a whole new computer with go-faster stripes that would be capable of running it, a game such as this would undoubtedly bring my brain to a screeching halt. HOW DO I SHOT HOLE; that sort of thing.

More errant writing when it cools down, or when something significant happens; one or the other

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It’s not cruel, it’s.. ‘playful’

typed for your pleasure on 26 July 2006, at 11.39 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Manha de Carnaval’ by Claudine Longet

Have you seen adverts for that VisitorVille thing? It looks kinda engrossing. More engrossing than it probably needs to be.

VisitorVille takes a revolutionary visual approach to web analytics. VisitorVille makes data mining simple and accurate, easily performing tasks that are impossible to accomplish using traditional (and dreadfully boring) web analytics solutions.

What makes VisitorVille unique is immediately clear: VisitorVille does not represent website visitors simply as numbers or graphs, but as real people in a real environment. You can monitor your site traffic as if you were people-watching in a big city.

Visually it’s like the Sims, wherein you have wee people representing your site’s visitors, walking round in cities that represent your site, inside buildings that represent your site’s pages. Sometimes you’ll see buses representing search engines transporting said visitors hither and yon. I gotta say, it’s pretty innovative, but for a site stat junkie like myself, it’s such a bad idea.

I used to have a copy of the first Sims game on my old computer; I had two families, the Goths, which, if I’m not mistaken, was a default name for a couple of the character archetypes, and the Montags, who I’d actually made into Goths — well, as much as the first Sims game would allow. Over the course of my playing career, I’d discovered the cheat for making as much Simoleons as you wanted, so both families had these giant ostentatious homes that had all mod cons, needless to say.
When I realised I was wasting far too much time micromanaging their lives, one day I had the Montags, who were a couple, invite the Goths, who were a couple with a preteen daughter, round for a party, or whatever Sims do. I assembled them in a room to the size of a bedroom, and removed all the doors. Then I replaced most of the walls with floor-to-ceiling windows, and on the remaining wall space, I hung that lovely clown painting that Sims tend to find unsettling. I then added a hi-fi system, which I had constantly blaring country music at an elevated volume. Eventually my Sims wanted to listen to something different, so one would occasionally walk over and change the station. After observing the Goth’s daughter change it several times, I decided to set up a fence round the stereo.

As the subjugation party continued, more and more piles of rubbish started accumulating, which made my Sims more and more unhappy, and after three Sim hours, every member of the group had soiled themselves at least once, as I’d built no bathroom. Also, since they were falling asleep standing up, I’d graciously put a coffee maker in the room to keep them awake (what, the country music wasn’t doing that by itself?), which naturally caused more ‘accidents’.

As you can well imagine, everyone’s moods were well into the red, and I began to feel sorry for them, as I realised they hadn’t eaten in several hours. So I graciously gave them a gas grill, and selected the person least capable of cooking to make barbeque for the party. Ruh-roh!
It only took two minutes for the first of the fires to start, if memory serves me right. The entire house went up in flames, but thankfully, everyone in the room burned to death long before that happened. The party, from pleasant start to immolated finish, took about three hours of my time; after which, I uninstalled the game, and haven’t played it since.

A quick whirl on Google shows I wasn’t the only sadist, which isn’t too surprising. Now I need to find those screenshots I took..

So yeah, VisitorVille! I’m quite sure it’s pyromaniac-proof, but… wouldn’t it be a tragedy if it weren’t?

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more Real Life Work Stories

typed for your pleasure on 24 July 2006, at 10.35 pm

Sdtrk: ‘One more’ by Medicine

BLOKE ON PHONE: Well, I can’t talk right now, cos I’m heading out to work — I work for Otto Bock
ME: Ahh, as in the guys fighting the Decepticons?
BLOKE ON PHONE: Pardon?
ME: Autobots! Fighting the Decepticons… You know — Transformers, the Eighties cartoon…
BLOKE ON PHONE: Ahh, yeah, I should’ve picked up on that.

Perhaps he actually is working with the Autobots, and just doesn’t want to blow his cover; in which case, his ability to play it off is pretty admirable. Unfortunately, I’ve pledged my allegiance to the Decepticons, so his worthless life will soon be forfeit

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Ears are bleeding: supplemental

typed for your pleasure on 21 July 2006, at 4.10 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Shaken (Kid 606 refix)’ by Drop the lime

The inevitable conclusion?

SEAN (handing Cd back): ‘Yeah, that was a little too harsh for me, there.’
DAVECAT: ‘Ah ha ha ha ha!’

Obvious result? I would say so, yes..

Burnett-Rae then goes on to briefly discuss [Aleister] Crowley’s poetry and a few other topics. Of interest is when he writes, “I have mentioned that he was unusually temperate in his use of alcohol and that even a slight excess of spirits would cause him to ‘pass out’. The same could not be said of his curries! I was invited to have one of these, prepared by himself, one day just before the war. At the first mouthful I thought I had burned my tongue with caustic acid and reached for the water and thereafter took water with every successive spoonful. Crowley, however, shovelled an enormous plateful away with record speed, fortifying it as he went with chillies and other spices, the sweat pouring down his face, as if he were in a Turkish bath. When he had eaten copiously, he helped himself to more and offered me another plateful but I had had enough, although normally I am fond of curry.”
taken from this site

As I told him, Noise is really an acquired taste

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Ishiguro-san is everywhere. EVERYWHERE

typed for your pleasure on 20 July 2006, at 6.17 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Wear your love like heaven’ by Masonna

Remember when I wrote a number of months ago about how Hiroshi Ishiguro, the ‘father’ of Repliee, my favouritest Gynoid in the world, said he was going to make an Android duplicate of himself? You don’t? Tch. Well anyway, he’s gone and done it. Meet Geminoid HI-1:


Left, Geminoid; right, Ishiguro-san

Meet the Remote-Control Self
Wired.com | By Tim Hornyak
12:00 PM Jul, 20, 2006 KYOTO, Japan — Hiroshi Ishiguro is a busy man. Between his two jobs, countless meetings and presentations, his demanding schedule was eating up all his time. So he built an android version of himself to pick up the slack.

Ishiguro, a senior researcher at ATR Intelligent Robotics and Communication Laboratories outside Kyoto, has created a machine in his own image — a robot that looks and moves exactly like him. It sits on a chair and gazes around the room in a very humanlike fashion, just like its creator. In fact, the robot is an exact duplicate.

Ishiguro’s silicone-and-steel doppelgänger was made from casts taken from his own body. Powered by pressurized air and small actuators, it runs on semiautonomous motion programs.

It blinks and fidgets in its seat, moving its foot up and down restlessly, its shoulders rising gently as though it were breathing. These micromovements are so convincing that it’s hard to believe this is a machine — it seems more like a man wearing a rubber mask. But a living, breathing man.

But “Geminoid HI-1,” as the robot is called, has another trick up its sleeve.

“Everyone, thank you so much for coming today,” it says in polite but languid Japanese at an ATR demo Thursday, its lips moving to the sound. The voice is Ishiguro’s, broadcast through a speaker inside his android double.

Geminoid can be operated remotely so the robot reproduces the voice, posture and lip movements of Ishiguro, who wears a motion-capture system. A mouseclick raises a hand or finger.

Ishiguro, whose job is teaching at Osaka University, an hour’s drive away, designed Geminoid so he could “robot in” to his classes and skip the commute. As he steps out from behind a curtain like the Wizard of Oz, standing beside his robot self, the shift is disconcerting.

“The idea is tele-interaction,” says Ishiguro, who is also head of the university’s Intelligent Robotics Laboratory. “If I access the android through the internet, I do not need to go to ATR anymore.”
the rest of the article is here

So he’s just lazy? Is that what he’s actually saying??
Seriously, that’s pretty fab. When he first mentioned that, I was thinking it’d take years for his Doppelgänger to be built, but I guess not. Then again, it might’ve been a case where he’d made that statement knowing that work on Geminoid was already underway. In any event, rather impressive! Of course, now I’m going to have to hunt down any and all videos with him..

Might I add here that ‘Geminoid’ is a very tokusatsu-y sounding name. I think Geminoid fought against Dimensional warrior Spielban in one episode, although I may be wrong.

Rock the hell on, Ishiguro-san! (Further info available at Tim Hornyak’s Loving the Machine)

Technorati tags: Hiroshi Ishiguro, Android, Repliee, Actroid, Gynoid, Geminoid

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If your ears are bleeding, that means it’s working

typed for your pleasure on 20 July 2006, at 5.01 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Cruise (Force the truth)’ by whitehouse

Today was odd at work, as both of my managers were getting all pally with me. Allow me to set up some background, if you will: every week, I bring something to read so I’m not bored insensate both before work begins and for our 10 minute break period, and last week, I’d brought my copy of ‘The Scooter book‘. George ambled by and asked me what it was about, and I explained that I love Mod culture, hence the purchase. (Actually, Zip Gun gave it to me, but that’s a detail he wouldn’t be concerned with.) He pretty much stops round to my desk every time he sees me with a new book or magazine now, and today, he’d enquired as to what other stuff I’m into. I avoided mentioning the obvious, but I brought up Britcoms, and learned that George was a fan of ‘Are you being served?’ and ‘Chef!’, which was pretty ace, and completely unexpected…

Later on, my other supervisor Sean was asking me what kinds of music I’m into, as a couple of weeks ago, he’d seen me reading the recent MOJO magazine special on Morrissey & Manchester. He told me he used to be a guitarist in a local band for a couple of years back in the late Eighties; which, again, was the latest in a series of non sequiturs. I told him that I’m into all kinds of stuff, but these days, I usually can be found listening to either Noise/Power-electronics, or European girl singers from the Sixties. Naturally, I had to attempt to explain it, at which point, Sean said, ‘Have you got a Cd burner? Just burn me some stuff, and I’ll listen to it.’ Aheh heh heh. But of course.

Here’s what I made for him!
File has expired, sorry.
‘Soundtrack for Entropy’. 80 minutes of 18 tracks, featuring NON, Merzbow, Masonna, Ramleh, whitehouse, Venetian snares with Speedranch, The Gerogerigegege, popporu, and Wreath.VCA, which would be my own Power-electronics project from the late Nineties. My only regret is that I couldn’t fit a second Masonna track on the disk, but my intent should still be clear.

I’m eagerly awaiting his response, as it should be priceless. Unless, of course, it gets me fired

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