Archive for December, 2008

Crescent Moonset

December 31, 2008 By: erik Category: Geeky, Photos, Science, Timelapse, Videos

Crescent Moon with Jupiter and MercuryJust like any of you men out there would do if you really loved your wives, as a birthday present for my wife yesterday, I aligned the moon and the planets. You know, just to show her I care.

Confidentiality Notice

December 30, 2008 By: erik Category: Complaining, Geeky, Internet, Politics

Reading This Sign Is Strictly ProhibitedWhen I worked for a government institution twelve years ago, I recall that there were some bigwigs that worked there that had their secretaries print out every email they received and place it on their desk as if letters had arrived. I presume they would dictate responses. I was always amazed at such a fundamental misunderstanding of what electronic mail is about. But it was 1996 and every web page still used the <center> tag, so I forgive them.

Happy Birthday, Marga!

December 30, 2008 By: erik Category: Family, Photos

MargaMarga turns 20-years-old today…in hexadecimal, anyway. To a computer geek, it’s a nice round number. 100000 in binary or 25. 0x20 (hexadecimal notation) is the ASCII code for a space (” “) character. That’s why you see all those %20’s in web page urls sometimes. Those are spaces. The folks over at have a pretty good explanation.

Enjoy your hexadecimal twenties, love. You’ve got sixteen more years before your hexthirties. Don’t you agree that women’s ages should always be represented in hex?

Frosty Crystals

December 29, 2008 By: erik Category: Funny, Photos

Introducing Frosty Crystals™, the newest most revitalizing breakfast cereal from Morning Guru, Inc., the international leader of New Age products for the breakfast table, makers of the widely popular and ridiculously overpriced Astral Toaster™ and Lotus Leaf Jam™. Do you feel tired in the mornings immediately after returning to your physical body and getting out of bed? If so, our experts are certain that you suffer from Droopy Aura Syndrome. Frosty Crystals™ is the only proven cure for D.A.S. Proven!! In a laboratory! At MG Labs, we use the strictest procedures to absolutely guarantee the results we want. Nine out of ten of the most respected New Age gurus in Los Angeles – that we paid a large sum money to agree with us – agree that there is absolutely no alternative. Not only do Frosty Crystals™ taste great, but there is so much energy and love flowing through each Frosty Crystal™ that you will be filled with such warmth and energy1 that your aura will be beaming through all planes of existence. Remember how your horoscope said you’d have to make an important decision soon? This is it! Stop making the same energy-draining mistakes you’ve made in all your past lives. Give us your money and feel great! Buy Frosty Crystals™ today!

May contain shards of glass.

1Feeling of warmth may be from internal bleeding.


Flickr Link Preview – A Greasemonkey Script

December 28, 2008 By: erik Category: Flickr, Geeky

I’ve had this idea for a Greasemonkey script for a while. It seemed to me like, using the extensive Flickr API, I should be able to write a script that shows me a thumbnail of an image that was linked to in Flickr. When someone says, “Check out thesephotosonFlickr,” with text hyperlinks, I’d like to be able to see what those pictures are without going all the way to Flickr.

Christmas 2008

December 28, 2008 By: erik Category: Family, Mondragon, Partying, Spain

GildasWe had a very intimate Christmas celebration this year, in which small children were saliently absent. It was just Marga, her sister, grandfather, mother and father, and me for Christmas Eve dinner (the most important meal), and then her Aunt Marga and sons joined us for Christmas lunch. As usual, there were so many appetizers that I had to turn down the main dish.

Merry Christmas from Erik, Marga, and Nora

December 25, 2008 By: erik Category: Family, News, Offspring, Photos

Christmas Card 2008

That’s right, we are officially announcing the name of our daughter on Christmas. Her name will be Nora.

Lots of love from the 2.65 of us to all of you.

O Tannenbaum

December 24, 2008 By: erik Category: House, Musings, Photos

Christmas TreeOur Christmas tree looks extra lovely this year, in my opinion. I think it’s because I took extra time to separate each branch as much as possible. In past years there was too much haste involved. Growing up in the carpet-dominated United States, I never knew the joy of Christmas tree floor reflections. It’s like having two trees in one!

Parental Influence

December 23, 2008 By: erik Category: Musings, Stuff I Found, USA

History suggests that, all other things being equal, a society prospers in proportion to its ability to prevent parents from influencing their children’s success directly.

After Credentials, by Paul Graham

At least he mentions his bias as a startup funder. In general, I think Graham makes a lot of sense in all his essays about smaller companies being better for society in the long term.


December 23, 2008 By: erik Category: Photos, Religion, Spain, Weird

Lights with ChurchWe spent a lot of time in Laredo this past weekend. I vaguely recall Laredo’s Christmas decorations being pretty disappointing in previous years, but this year they’ve done an excellent job. The first two photos are of one single nativity model, but there was a concrete column preventing me from making a continuous panorama. The detail was incredible. There were even goldfish swimming in the river.