Friday Fun: The Internet Crash of 2007

Saw this on LifeHacker, it’s a fun video from the onion about the Internet crashing:

Friday Fun: The Internet Crash of 2007 – Lifehacker

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Today’s word from Dictionary.com: triskaidekaphobia

Today’s word in the dictionary.com word a day feed is “triskaidekaphobia”
Nice one guys. 🙂

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Upgrading WordPress

Well, after my earlier problems with the automated Fantastico upgrade, I did the “manual” upgrade to my WordPress installation. I was moving from 2.0.6 to 2.2.1 following the instructions from WordPress.

It all went perfectly. Well done on the instructions (and the software).

At the end of the upgrade instructions, there’s a section called
Special note for Fantastico Upgrades, which mentions removing the DB_CHARSET and DB_COLLATE parameters if upgrading with Fantistico. Presumably the DB_CHARSET parameter is what affected the accented characters in my earlier upgrade attempt. So, if upgrading WordPress using Fantistico, read the manual instructions! (pity I didn’t see this earlier.) I expect this will soon find itself into the Fantastico procedures, or at least the documentation, however I think I’ll stick with the manual upgrade in future.

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Back to basics (or some rules for software upgrades)

  • Don’t upgrade just because there is a newer version available.
  • Check the release notes and other documentation for any problems with the new software.
  • Verify the upgrade in a test environment first. This is not always a realistic option, but if you don’t do it then backups become even more important.
  • Backup your current live system (and verify the backup).
  • Allow enough time for the upgrade of the live system.
  • Verify everything is working correctly after the upgrade. This is the point where the problems appeared for me. However, I was able to revert to the earlier version – which had luckily been backed up by the software doing the installation and not me (I should learn to follow my own advice.)

In case you’re wondering, the problem was “just” a visual, where accented characters were not being displayed correctly in WordPress 2.2, hopefully 2.2.1 fixes it. I’ll have to wait until I get some more time to do a test and a hand install, rather than the automated Fantastico install.

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Flash Lite: Graphics for Mobile Devices

This is an interesting introduction to Flash Lite – including getting data from the network – in the current issue of Dr. Dobbs Journal. Well it’s probably only interesting if, like me, the only thing you already know about Flash Lite, is that some people can make nice looking demos with it 😉
Dr. Dobbs | Flash Lite: Graphics for Mobile Devices | June 8, 2007

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RubyCocoa 0.11.0 released – The Unofficial Apple Weblog TUAW

Just saw this post on TUAW: RubyCocoa 0.11.0 released – The Unofficial Apple Weblog TUAW

Looks interesting for anyone wanting to develop Mac applications in Ruby.

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RTÉ entertainment goes mobile – ireland.com – Breaking News – Tue, May 22, 2007

Interesting news about RTÉ programmes on 3’s mobile network. ireland.com – Breaking News – Tue, May 22, 2007 – RTÉ entertainment goes mobile
50 cent a day doesn’t sound to bad for the amount of data. Let’s hope other data rates come down also.
(I wonder if you need a “televison reception aparatus” licence for your phone also 🙂

Although, I don’t know how well a fashion program would work on such a small screen.

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RFID being tapped to stifle exam cheaters

Not convinced about the usefulness of this RFID application, reported on Ars Technica: RFID being tapped to stifle exam cheaters

Given that this only seems to be used to check if all the exam papers are still in the package. Surely, someone could count them? Also, it doesn’t seem to account for the fact that whoever might steal the papers, may now just photograph/photocopy them instead.

On the other hand using statistical analysis to flag particular answer papers for further investigation seems reasonable but it doesn’t prove that someone has cheated.

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My voice is my passport

Wow, this is the second movie reference in 2 posts.

You may have guessed that I’m interested in security and alternative computer input/output systems. This morning, I saw this post “Voice biometrics: coming to a security system near you.” about banks using voice print technology.
Interesting discussion about using voice to combine 2 id methods, something you have: voiceprint, and something your know: security question. The usual concerns about “Big Brother” are also mentioned.

Humorous, even if not politically correct, referring to some users as “goats” 🙂

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Eyeball-tracking camera could change real-world ads

Interesting story about a camera that can count eyes. They suggest that it might be used by advertising companies to count the numbers of eyes that have looked at particular ads. Eyeball-tracking camera could change real-world ads
Getting closer to the ads in “Minority Report”
This might be interesting for anyone researching computer vision or pervasive and ubiquitous computing.

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