SXSW has come and gone, but I had a lot of fun and this was probably my favorite SXSW so far. Lots of good bands, got to see just about everyone I wanted to, and barely waited in line the entire time. Highlights include Macklemore (NSFW lyrics), Icona Pop, Capital Cities, and winning tickets to see a private show with Matt & Kim. Best new discovery was Elle King. It probably helped that there were a lot of big name stars to suck up people, including Justin Timberlake (new album comes out tomorrow!), Prince, Smashing Pumpkins, Usher, and John Fogerty. And as usual, it was mass chaos in the streets, but as Icona Pop would say, I LOVE IT!
The NCAA brackets were announced yesterday, and the Gators are coming to Austin! I already bought my tickets, and this will be the first time I'll have gotten to see the Gators play live since I graduated over 6 years ago. And Nate Silver (from election prediction fame) has the Gators as the 3rd most likely team to win it all. I need to figure out the rest of my bracket now too.
I also can't believe it's been 6 years!
Also the first 3 links I tried for the bracket were all generic and would be gone within a few months, so hopefully the link above lasts a bit longer. I've said it before and I'll say it again, it's astounding how many broken links there are back in the archives, where close to 98% of them don't work anymore.
I forgot to write about it in the last update, but my car hit 100,000 miles on March 6th. So far the only major repairs were replacing an alternator and replacing worn shocks, but all in all it's done me very very well. And while it's got a few more scratches, dings, and paint chips it still looks pretty darn good for so many miles. And I still highly recommend it!
Austin's biggest event of the year, SXSW, started up yesterday. The music parts starts up on Tuesday night where I have to figure out which of the 2,200 bands I've never heard of I'm going to see. Always a good time and I can't wait for it to begin!
Whenever I read stories about e-readers being replaced by tablets I always wonder if the people writing this stuff has ever even used an e-reader? They have completely different functionality! It's like saying a screwdriver has replaced hammers because you can bang stuff with a screwdriver too. I own both a Kindle and a Nexus 7, and while I could read on the tablet, it's so much better of an experience on the Kindle that it seems silly to compare the two. One has glare, is (relatively) much heavier, and only lasts a few hours on a battery versus 2 months. Heck a tablet couldn't even get you past an international flight. Who wants to use that as a primary reader?
I also see that when people compare the new Microsoft Surface Pro to an iPad. One is a computer in a new smaller and lighter form factor, the other is a tablet. They need to compare the Surface to an ultrabook. No one compares the dozens of ultrabooks on the market to an iPad to complain about battery life or thickness. It makes no sense! Sure you can compare if you could use a tablet versus a full PC, but that's independent of the devices being used.
The company I work for has created the world's smallest 32-bit MCU, which measures only 1.9mmx2mm big. I don't work on that particular part, but I'm in the group that does. Really cool stuff with a lot of interesting applications.
At long last, the right has definitive proof that Obama is destroying the economy by letting the Dow break it's previous record. Obviously businesses hate the economic climate Obama has generated and their record settings profits just further prove he's out to get them and we can just completely ignore the incredible wealth inequality that has occurred over the last 30 years as the rules favor the rich and powerful over the average person.
Finally I'll leave with this futuristic research article where, for the first time ever, direct brain-to-brain communication has been achieved between rats. I was wondering when we'd hit this milestone, and it's only the start of what will be possible over the next few decades. Exciting times to live in indeed!
The company I work for (I still find it amazing I get paid to be nerdy) has created the smallest 32-bit ARM chip ever made, which may lead to some interesting applications like computer chips you swallow. The group I work for is actually the one's designing that chip, and while I don't have anything personally to do with it, it's pretty cool technology.
Speaking of cool technology, for the first time ever, two rats have communicated with each other strictly over brain waves. This obviously is just the start of what is possible in brain-computer interface and is something I've long thought was coming. If this kind of thing interests you, I highly recommend The Age of Spiritual Machines which looks at what will be possible in the future. I think his prediction times are too optimistic, but everything he predicts will eventually become true.
Changing topics, Google has a fun easter egg when you ask Youtube to do the harlem shake.
I wonder, considering all the numerous broken links from past entries, if Youtube (assuming it still exists in 5 years....) will still have that easter egg active in the future. Or will some future person wonder what the heck this random piece of code is for and get rid of it.
After having moved all the website to new servers, I went back and looked at some of the archives, and it's surprising just how many links don't work at all anymore. I'd guesstimate it's almost 95% at this point if you look at 2001/2002. Either the entire domain is gone, or the particular webpage is deleted or moved. Not that I can be that angry at that considering in 2007 I moved all my webpages to a database, which broke any links that someone had to me.
I have a lot of moles.
Finally, I had my 5 year anniversary of meeting my wife the other day. It's kind of crazy when I think about it. And while life has thrown us some ridiculous challenges the last few years, it's been such a wonderful experience to be with the person you're meant to be with.
And speaking of that, this is probably the nerdiest proposal ever.
If you were one of the .25 people that visit (via a random Google search) this site each day, you may have noticed some weird stuff going on. I recently switch web hosting to APIS Networks and I managed to muck up the permissions while transferring over the files. But never fear, everything appears to be switch over now, and if you're reading this, then the DNS server you're using has also switched over as well to point to the new servers. Let me know if you notice anything broken, but I think all is well so far. I also updated the site history page. Coincidentally it's now been over 14 years since I first started writing HTML. It's a teenager!
I also recommend everyone learn at least a little HTML in their lives. It's come in handy even in a non-technical setting, like when you're trying to figure out why some webpage isn't working, or shortening links, or any number of scenarios.
I got a Kindle Paperwhite for Christmas from my parents. It was to replace my old Kindle Touch, and is definitely worth shelling out the money for since it glows in the dark finally for reading at night. The only drawback is that it still doesn't have physical page turn buttons, but I still have no reservations recommending everyone I know buy one. Even if you don't read that much currently, you probably will once you have this convenient form factor that can store thousands of books without all the weight and bulk.
Yeah, I was some of this Google Glass. It's supposed to come out at the end of 2013 to the general public. Hopefully by then there will be some way to reduce the reliance on voice commands, since despite what Star Trek thinks, voice is not the input method of the future. I think this stuff will really take off once it fits in a contact lens and you communicate via eye movement and thoughts.
Finally, sorry for the lack of Valentine's Day update this year. I noticed that I haven't done one since I got engaged. Not sure that's entirely a coincidence...