See the Chicken RFID page to see my latest project.
All graphs can be seen here -- this includes a calendar for historical information. I've just started a new page which describes the various sensors that I have.
Wildwater World Championships 22 Jul 2007
We just returned from Charlotte, NC to watch our niece (Olivia Churchill - GBR) compete in the Junior Wildwater World Championships (Kayak). She ended up with 2 bronze medals for individual classes, and one gold for a team class. The Charlotte races were held at the US National Whitewater Center which has a completely manmade course suitable for the short sprint races. Apparently the water is swimming pool clean -- and there are some enormous pumps that pump it round to generate the raging torrent to kayak down. The photo shows Olivia on her second run (the sprint races involve adding the times from two runs together) which led to one of her bronze medals.
USAir managed to cancel our (8 am) flight down to Charlotte on Friday morning and couldn't get us there until 8pm -- by which time we had missed the team race.
For a full trip report from my sister's point of view (she was travelling with the British team), see her trip report.
Hats off to Tilley Endurables 11 Jul 2006
I have worn a Tilley hat (a size 8⅛ T3) for 15 years or so, and it finally wore out after too many visits to the washing machine. I wanted to get a couple of new hats, so I got the catalog, and measured my head, and ordered two (a TH5 and an LTM6). I was somewhat suprised that the sizing guide ended up with me being a 7¾. Of course, the hats showed up and were too small -- well, actually they fitted on my head, but were too tight (they are supposed to be held on by gravity and not by pressure on the forehead).
I shipped them back, asking for a size 8 (which is what my old T3 had shrunk to). On a whim, I put the tattered remains of the T3 in the box, along with a note requesting replacement. I know that they say that their hats are warranteed for life, but I had no idea if it would actually work.
Imagine my suprise, when, a week later, a box arrived with three size 8 hats: T3 (replacement for my 15 year old hat), and the correct sizes of LTM6 and TH5. These guys come highly recommended.
Web Crawlers and Content Compression 6 Jul 2006
Since I managed to get content-compression working on my web server (which was way harder than it ought to have been), I have noticed that most of the web crawlers do not make use of it. However, the googlebot and Yahoo Slurp both do enable compression, so it is possible.
I have started sending email to all the contact points that I can find when spiders reach my website. One implemented compression within hours, one discovered that they had a bug which prevented it from working, and a couple more are looking into implementing it. The rest have yet to reply.
I have now built an automatic Hall of Shame page that lists the current sinners. What you don't see from this page is that many crawlers do support compression. The suprising thing is that some flavors of IE 6.0 don't appear to do compression.
or see how it works.