This weblog has moved here [http://markallanson.net/wordpress/]. What you see here is an archive.

20

Feb

2006

I've moved, but only a little way away.

[Obsolete]

If you have this page bookmarked as your entry point to my website, You need to update your bookmarks to point to http://markallanson.net/wordpress as I have moved there.

My feedburner feed now picks up it's details from the new location, this one is deprecated.

Posted by Mark at 09:36 AM | Comments (0)

7

Feb

2006

Here Here Russell!

Russell is dead on here, he can run his blog whichever way he wants. I am honestly astonished that people have got so upset, there are more important things in life people!

Now, lets see if he at least has kept trackback alive so that real conversation can occur!

Posted by Mark at 12:57 PM | Comments (0)

13

Jan

2006

Conditional Build Events in Visual Studio .NET

I ran across an situation today when I wanted to do a build event, but only if my solution was in a specific configuration. Specifically, when the project was in the UnitTest configuration, I wanted to copy a unit test assembly into the main projects output folder so that a number of plugin classes provided by the unit test assembly could be used by the main project. I also wanted to copy in some unit test based configuration.

Unfortunately Visual Studio .NET does not keep Pre and Post Build Events within a configuration's settings, they are stored globally across all configurations. Thankfully, given that build events simply get written to a batch file, then invoked you can use your 3L337 batch file skillz to perform conditional build events.

IF NOT $(ConfigurationName) == UnitTest GOTO end

:: copy unit test assembly to the service folder.
echo Copying "$(TargetDir)UnitTests.dll" to "$(ProjectDir)..\MyProject\bin\debug\"
copy "$(TargetDir)UnitTests.dll" "$(ProjectDir)..\MyProject\bin\debug\"

:end
echo Finished Post Build Event

So, what does this bit of script do? Firstly it compares the current configuration to the configuration that I want to perform my build event for. Secondly, it negates this comparison, so that if the configuration is not what i'm looking for the branch jumps to the end without executing the build event. Lastly, if the configurations match, it performs the real actions of the build event.

It is a bit of a pain having to write this within a build event. It would be less of a pain if they pointed out a way of doing it within the help file for the build event editor. Configuration-based build events would be perfect, so the logic is performed by Visual Studio!

Posted by Mark at 10:44 AM | Comments (0)

2

Dec

2005

Slide evolves beyond Flickr


Get Slide for your own webpage

Slide looks like the next evolution of photo sharing websites. It can make slide shows from RSS feeds too, so with a bit of modification to my galleries RSS capabilities, I should be able to get a slide show going for each of my galleries.

Posted by Mark at 11:10 PM | Comments (0)

28

Oct

2005

XBox.com - MyXBox has gone live!

Fantastic job! Head over to www.xbox.com to check out the new bits. Here is my gamer card!

Posted by Mark at 02:17 PM | Comments (0)

27

Oct

2005

8th Grade Math

You Passed 8th Grade Math
Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!
Could You Pass 8th Grade Math?
Posted by Mark at 01:14 PM | Comments (0)

1

Sep

2005

Music Genome Project? How about Human Genome Project?

For the last few days I have been making use of the Music Genome Project's Pandora. The idea behind Pandora is to create a "Radio Channel" that is based on the musical qualities found in another song or the songs produced by a specific artist. So far I am more than impressed. Other than one song I wanted it to match that it didn't know about (Pass the Vibes by Definition of Sound), it has done a brilliant job at playing me music that is closely related to what I have selected.

The matching seems to be done by analysing the musical qualities of a particular song (for example synchopated rhythms, dark bass lines, fast beats, melodic vocals...) and then cross references those qualities against a database of songs to determine other songs that match the qualities of the selected song/artist. These guys have a blog that provides more information on what they do.

All that we need now is for someone to do the same with humans. For example you enter the name of a famous actress or model (or if you are femme, actor), and it then analyses the traits of that person and picks out a number of other people that match those qualities. In fact, this would be great for a dating service. When you sign up you have to take a picture of yourself (say, in your underwear), it is then analysed and stored into a database. You then look at a group of different people and choose that which is most desirable, those physical characteristics are then used to match you with people that match your preference. Anyone got a blank check? I might start this business up myself! :)

Posted by Mark at 09:13 PM | Comments (0)

29

Aug

2005

Jumboz, where are you?

Jumboz (mentioned in my post "Super Low Springs for the FTO"), where are you? Why are you not defending your reputation? Why are you not increasing the quality of your products?, or if you are increasing the quality of your products why are you not letting people know? Where is your blog? Where is your website!!!!!!!

I couldn't find a single post on any bulletin board / forum that said good things about Jumboz Springs (notice however that I did find lots of posts that didn't say a anything either way). The car modification scene would have to be one of the most active groups of internet users on the planet after geeks with their countless forums, bulletin boards and club websites. Not having a web presence here is almost an attempt at suicide.

PS. Sorry if this post sounds a lot like Scoble, but in an instance like this I can see exactly where he is comming from.

Posted by Mark at 09:23 PM | Comments (0)

Super Low Springs for the FTO

One of the things I am looking forward to when going back home to Australia for Christmas is getting back behind the wheel of my pride & joy.

Although, looking back through various pictures I have a gained a strong desire to lower the front of the car even further than it already is. The problem however, is that the current tyres on all four corners of the car are 235/45ZR17. As it is, the current front tyres rub slightly on full lock, so much so that I have already cut and removed parts of the inside guards at the front.

I have a strong suspicion (via my memory of the inside wheel arch bodywork) that this particular section bodywork has a slight positive camber, hence the wheels will rub more the further the car is lowered. This effect is exacerbated by the the fact that whenever you lower a car (without altering other parts of the suspension) the wheels of the section being lowered automatically gain negative camber. I can counter this effect slightly as I have a Whiteline adjustable camber kit on the car.

Another possible problem is that lowering the front of the car with super-low springs also increases the likelihood that the stock dampers will start bumping. This has two effects; the first being that it generates heat, making the dampers less effective, hence altering its rebound characteristics. The second is that whenever the damper knocks it is effectively destroying its self. The general way around this problem is to fit a proper adjustable coil-over kit (in fact in Japan they would never just put in lowered springs with standard dampers). I am not sure if my budget will stretch to a full coil-over kit, so I may just get a set of super-low springs and replace the dampers with a shorter set sometime in the future (when I move back to Australia permanently).

So, who makes super-low springs for the FTO. The car currently has King Springs on each corner, however unfortunately they do not provide a set of super low springs for the FTO. Whiteline does have a set in their flat-out range however I have a sneaky suspicion that their springs are no lower than the Kings that are already in the front. Jumboz have a bad rep (I couldn't even find an official Jumboz website...), so that rules them out. The only Australian company that offers the possibility of lowering further is H&R Springs who make custom springs designed to the specifications you provide. Does anyone know anyone else that makes super-low springs for the FTO in Australia perferrably 50mm-60mm lower than standard? If so, email me.

Posted by Mark at 08:50 PM | Comments (0)

19

Jul

2005

If you use GreaseMonkey... Please read this.

If you use GreaseMonkey then please please please read Mark Pilgrims post on a very severe, hugely easily exploitable bug in GreaseMonkey that could potentially send ANY file in your local hard disk to ANY url, ANYWHERE.

For full details: Full details on GreaseMonkey exploit.http://mozdev.org/pipermail/greasemonkey/2005-July/004022.html

Please please uninstall GreaseMonkey until this is fixed, either that or remove all * targets and replace them with targets only to trusted websites.

Posted by Mark at 09:36 PM | Comments (0)