James Gosling Interview

By Noah | September 28, 2010

There’s a transcript of a terrific interview with James Gosling available at http://www.basementcoders.com/transcripts/James_Gosling_Transcript.html.  Lots of irreverent, insightful comments on Java, Oracle, open source, Google and the Android suit, etc.

Topics: History of computing, Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Type too fast, melt your processor?

By Noah | September 25, 2010

Not really, of course, but there’s a nice ASPLOS XV paper from Mesa-Martínez et. al. titled Characterizing Processor Thermal Behavior which explains, among other things:

“…each [Emacs] keystroke generates around 1◦ C thermal spike…”

Who knew?  In their tests, the startup phase of Emacs raised the processor temperature in the area being measured (simulated) by 15◦ C.  Most of what’s driving modern trends toward multicore architectures is the tendency for higher speed single core machines to run too hot.  Indeed, I saw one presentation at IBM pointing out that heat densities were passing those found on the surface of a clothes iron!  Anyway, this is an interesting paper if you’re interest in modern processor design.

Topics: Science, Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Bass gig: Robert Cedrone in Lexington on Sept. 25th

By Noah | September 16, 2010

Robert Cedrone and I will be appearing again this Saturday at the Starbucks (map) that’s on the north side of Lexington, MA (not the one in the center of town!)  Robert and I go on at about 7:20 PM and we’ll play until a bit after 8 PM, but there are also a couple of other groups on ahead of us, so come early.  In fact, we may wind up going on a bit early anyway depending how things go.

Robert plays acoustic guitar and sings a mix of covers including Van Morrison, Al Green, Southside Johnny, Roy Orbison, etc., and some originals too.   We’ll again be joined by Ron Chancey, who is a terrific guitar player.  Robert and Ron have for years been in the legendary Boston-area blues band, the Urge, and these local gigs give them a chance to get out and do something a bit quieter.

The gig will be at:

Starbucks
60 Bedford St
Lexington, MA 02420
(781) 863-1189

This is indeed the same day as my Rockin’ for KPM gig with Rock City Band, but with luck I’ll make it down from Dracut to Lexington with a few minutes to spare.  (Go figure:  no gigs for 3 months, and then two the same day.  I’ll be back with Rock City at Mickee’s in Billerica for a full length gig the evening of Saturday, October 9th too.)

UPDATE: Writeup on the gig from the event organizers

Topics: Boston area, Music, Non-technical | No Comments »

Bass gig: Rockin’ for KPM on Sept. 25th

By Noah | September 16, 2010

On Sept. 25th, I’ll be playing bass for Rock City Band at the Rockin’ for KPM benefit at Back to the Boathouse in Dracut, Mass. Rockin’ for KPM is held each year to celebrate and raise money for the surviving two of three triplets, Kyle, Patrick and Matthew Wilkins, all of whom were born with Becker’s Muscular Distrophy.  There will be good food and good music, and it’s for a very good cause.   We go on for one set at about 4:30 PM, but the other bands start at 1PM and there are good bands following us too. This will be my first Rockin’ for KPM, but I’m told that lots of great bands show up and everyone has a terrific time.   There’s more info about the benefit here.  Come on out and join us!

Also: it turns out I have another gig that evening backing up Robert Cedrone.  I’ll put up a separate posting with info on that one.

Topics: Boston area, Music, Non-technical | No Comments »

Blog upgraded to WordPress 3.0.1

By Noah | September 2, 2010

This evening I updated Arcane Domain to WordPress 3.0.1.  If you see anything that’s not working right, please comment here, or email the Web master (instructions on the About this Blog page).  Heartfelt thanks to everyone in the WordPress community who worked so hard on the upgrade!

Topics: Arcane domain blog | No Comments »

Radioactive decay affected by solar activity?

By Noah | August 25, 2010

Seems hard to believe but Purdue and Stanford researchers report that the rates of decay of several radioactive elements drop somewhat during periods of solar flare.  Amazing.  Thanks to @bramcohen and @daveo for passing this on.

UPDATE:  Discover Magazine reports that other scientists are skeptical, with some supporting reasons, but in the same article the original researchers stick by their analysis.

SEPT, 2010 UPDATE: Not surprisingly, more careful tests suggest that decay rates are constant after all.

Topics: Science | No Comments »

Interesting History of Java & thoughts on the Oracle/Google Android lawsuit

By Noah | August 18, 2010

Charles Nutter has an interesting post titled  My Thoughts on Oracle v. Google.  It gives a quite detailed history of the Java platform, and some thoughts on the recent lawsuit by Oracle against Google.   I’m not in a position to comment on the accuracy of all the details, but I found it to be thought-provoking, and well written.

Topics: Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Excellent “What’s new in HTML5?” cheat sheet

By Noah | August 18, 2010

From Mark Pilgrim by way of DaveO:   HTML5 Peeks, Pokes and Pointers, an excellent quick guide to new syntax and Javascript APIs in HTML5.  See also Mark’s Dive into HTML5.

Topics: Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Gig alert: Payson Park Music Festival this Wed. in Belmont, MA

By Noah | July 12, 2010

My friends in Rock City Band will be appearing this Wed., weather permitting, at Payson Park in Belmont, MA for the Payson Park Music Festival.  As far as I know, this is a local neighborhood summer music event, at a small park in Belmont.  I’ll be coming by to do sound, and I’ll likely trade off with Don playing bass.  Music starts at 6:45 PM and goes until dusk.  With luck, I’ll have a chance around 8:30 PM to dedicate one to Dan Connolly too.

RAIN DELAY: the concert has been delayed one day, to July 15, 2010, also at 6:45 PM.

Topics: Music | No Comments »

Worldwide celebration of Dan Connolly’s contributions to the Web

By Noah | July 12, 2010

Few people have contributed more to the development of the World Wide Web than my good friend Dan Connolly. After many years at the W3C, Dan is moving on the University of Kansas Medical Center.  To thank Dan for his unique contributions to the Web, Tim Berners-Lee has organized a worldwide celebration for this Wed, July 14th, at 8PM Eastern time.  In whatever town they are, people will gather for meals in Dan’s honor, and 1/2 hour later (8:30 PM EDT) to make toasts.  So that everyone can share the moment, a Twitter feed at #danfest will capture good wishes and links to other contributions.   Dan loves to play guitar and sing, so those who can will play a bit of music in Dan’s honor too.

Dan is a good friend, and he has contributed more deeply and more selflessly to the success of the Web than most of the public will ever understand.  Unfortunately, I will not be able to join the dinner group in Cambridge, but with luck I might manage a little musical acknowledgement on Wed evening.

UPDATE: pictures from Cambridge #danfest

Topics: Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Sanjiva on 10 Years of SOAP

By Noah | June 24, 2010

I just noticed that in April, Sanjiva Weerawarana posted his own thoughts on 10 years of SOAP, with a somewhat more positive perspective than mine.  I also see that his posting predates mine, so it seems we each noted the anniversary independently.  For those who don’t know, Sanjiva has been one of the most important contributors to SOAP and Web Services, starting with the 1999 IBM prototype work described in his posting.  Worth reading.

Topics: History of computing, Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Gig alert: 2010 World Bass Tour Starts tonight

By Noah | June 12, 2010

…and, for that matter, it ends tonight too.  In fact, I’ll just be sitting in on bass for just a few songs with my good friend John Landau, who is making one of his regular appearances at the Caffe Concerto restaurant in Shepherd’s Bush, in London.  If you’re one of the three people in London who won’t be home watching the World Cup, come on down and enjoy some good Italian food and a little music.  By the way, John has a terrific new CD out called Journey through the Dark (the band is John Landau and the Giants — you can buy or download it from Amazon, among other places).   John also runs the terrific Petworth Sounds recording studio in London.  If you’re in London and looking to do an album, a demo, or even just to find good rehearsal space, check it out.

é

Topics: Music | No Comments »

Audio Web applications

By Noah | May 26, 2010

By way of Slashdot, it looks like the folks who are building the experimental audio support in Firefox are making really fine progress.  You get to manipulate the raw audio data using Javascript, more or less in real time.  They’ve even had some success with doing the FFT’s in Javascript (I didn’t expect that would be practical with this generation of CPUs and language interpreters).  This is going to open up a lot of really interesting audio applications on the Web.

Topics: Music, Web, Internet, Computing | No Comments »

Ten Years of SOAP

By Noah | May 17, 2010

Ten years ago today, at the 9th International Web Conference in Amsterdam, we held a panel discussion to introduce the SOAP networking protocol to the Web community.   Just a week before, the SOAP 1.1 specification had been posted as a W3C Note.   Many legitimate criticisms have been aimed at SOAP in the years since, but it and XML-rpc were big steps toward the creation of simple, data-driven Web applications, and toward the widespread availability of portable, standardized, information integration protocols.  A large number of SOAP implementations were built, almost immediately, for a wide variety of languages, and of course vendors such as BEA, IBM and Microsoft eventually provided very deep SOAP integration with their middleware stacks. Read the rest of this entry »

Topics: History of computing, Web, Internet, Computing | 3 Comments »

Improvements to the posting on saving Nikon D300 and D300s settings

By Noah | May 1, 2010

The January post titled Nikon D300 hint: saving your settings has been the most popular of the year.  I’ve just updated it with some clarifications to the information about getting back to the camera’s factory default settings.  Follow the link above to see the updated post.

Topics: Photography | No Comments »

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