After some feedback (thanks!), I’ve decided to continue to host images on my own site after the redesign. It gives me more control over how images are displayed, and also allows the image galleries to retain the same feel as the rest of the site. Now the trick is to figure out how to manage it all.

I’m currently using Dave’s, which has served me well, and isn’t so far off from the right solution. There seem to be plenty of options out there, and I’m looking for the one somewhere in between album.pland Gallery, which might be overkill. For example, it’d be nice to have an admin page where I can upload new images and change captions through a web interface, but I don’t need to have comments or display EXIF data for every image or allow other users to upload images. Any suggestions?

posted November 27, 2007 – 2:49 pm

I put up a random group of photos from my recent East Coast trip – check ’em out here.

As part of the site redesign, I’m considering how best to display photos. Given a choice between Picasa Web albums (as above), Flickr albums (like this one) and my own HTML albums (like this one), do you have a preference? What’s easiest to browse? Let me know!

posted November 26, 2007 – 12:28 pm

I’ve been playing a bit with an updated layout for the site. So far, it’s nothing drastic, but hopefully things come across a little cleaner. It’s also a good opportunity to update my HTML/CSS skills, which date to about 1997. Reading a bunch at W3Schools, I gather quite a bit has changed since then. If you’re interested, you can check out my progress here (currently only the main page and “Projects” page are new). Feel free to send me any feedback you might have.

posted November 26, 2007 – 11:28 am

My East Coast trip was a whirlwind one – 3 days in Boston, 3 in New York, bookended by late night/early morning flights. From the outset, I was in sleep debt, unable to sleep on the redeye. It eventually caught up to me and I caught a bit of a cold. But, it was overall a good trip – I saw quite a few friends and tons of family, ate well, and got some culture both in Boston and New York. Though I didn’t make it to the ICA, I did see an exhibit on scientific instruments at Harvard (great objects, but poorly annotated) and made it to both the Natural History Museum (whales! dinosaurs! big stone heads!) and Folk Art Museum (mediocre collection, but what a spectacular building) in New York.

I’m really looking forward to Nebunele Theatre’s upcoming show, Medea Knows Best. Their last show, The Secret Ruths of Island House was one of the best pieces of theater I saw in 2006 (and I saw quite a bit of good theater). If you’re in town from December 7th thru the 22nd, check it out.

posted November 25, 2007 – 3:14 pm

The ice cream came out quite well, I think. If I had to make some suggestions (as per their request):

I think the sage in the coulis is an excellent start, but it wasn’t enough for me. I went ahead and steeped a few more leaves in the milk/cream mixture as it was simmering, which gave the ice cream base a much strong sage flavor (be sure to take them out before mixing in the coulis).

For those in the US, 300g of strawberries seems to be about a pint. I used about two pints (and doubled the rest of the quantities) and was happy with the amount of fruit/flavor in the end.

I cut way back on the sugar, even though it means harder ice cream (as Mr. Lebovitz points out, you can add alcohol or more fat to make it softer). I used a little more than half a cup of sugar for almost twice the amount of ice cream. 1c sugar in a pint would’ve been way too sweet for me.

Overall, I’d definitely make it again – I like herb/fruit combinations, and even with frozen rather than fresh strawberries, it was a successful recipe.

posted November 19, 2007 – 7:58 am

This afternoon’s experiment: strawberry sage ice cream. I changed the recipe a bit – I used frozen strawberries (it is November, after all), used lime zest instead of lemon in the puree, and used a fair bit less sugar than they suggested. I also put a couple of sage leaves in the cream as it was simmering to infuse it with a little more sage-ness. The mixture is cooling in the fridge right now – will post the results later or tomorrow from Boston.

posted November 17, 2007 – 12:51 pm

One of the things that was really bugging me about Blogger (and prompting me to consider WordPress) was the inability to create links within archives to the previous and next archive files. So on the page for March 2001, I wanted a link to February’s archive and April’s archive. Since Blogger didn’t have an easy way to do it, and since switching to WordPress at this point would be like finding a new apartment because you didn’t like the door handle in the bathroom, I figured out a way to create the links myself in PHP. The archives are now much easier to browse (something I actually do on a regular basis).

posted November 15, 2007 – 11:49 pm

I’m really looking forward to my upcoming East Coast trip – I leave for Boston on Saturday night. It’ll be great to see friends and family, but it’ll also be nice to have a week away from Seattle. It’s been a rough couple of weeks in the job search department (though things are looking up), so a little time in another city to collect my thoughts will be a welcome change.

Beyond visiting folks, I don’t have a ton of plans. I still haven’t made it to the new ICA on the waterfront in Boston, and I’ve heard good things about the Folk Art Museum in New York, so those are possibilities. And of course, no East Coast trip would be complete without some ice cream.

posted November 15, 2007 – 9:22 am

Had a chance recently to photograph and write up my latest knitting project (no, not the sweater I’ve been working on for almost 10 years): a scarf, knit on the bias. On the sweater front, though, some friends came over today to do some knitting and I started sleeve #1. I think the sweater and the robot arm are in competition to see which project takes longer. Sorry robot arm, sweater has a good three year head-start on you.

posted November 11, 2007 – 11:31 pm

An email this morning from Lauren not only alerted me to an ice cream-related call for reviews/contest but also to the fact that I haven’t used my ice cream maker in a couple weeks. What a shame! The strawberry and sage ice cream sounds pretty great – I might give it a try even though it’s not really strawberry season.

posted November 8, 2007 – 9:52 am

The other night, my friend Mike lamented that his digital camera (a Canon SD450) stopped working after a couple years and a couple too many trips to the beach. He knows I like taking stuff apart, and asked if I’d be interested in trying to fix it. Of course! This afternoon, we took the thing apart down to the gears, and removed about a quarter teaspoon of sand out of the innards. After a thorough cleaning, we managed to get it back together (with only one superfluous part left over) and working!

posted November 4, 2007 – 9:45 pm

I’m happy to report that, with some professional EE help, I found the source of the problems I was seeing with the robot arm. At this point, I’m ready to finish laying out the circuit board and start writing a bunch of software.

posted November 1, 2007 – 3:42 pm
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