Miscellany

Volume 9, Issue 5; 07 Jan 2006; last modified 08 Oct 2010

Flotsam and jetsam of the digital age.

These are tidbits that have been collecting in my “blog this” list, none of which seem large enough to warrant an essay by itself.

On policies, Wikipedia

Tim thinks it's a good idea to have one. I'm not sure why, exactly, but anyway, I'm going to follow Danny's lead on this one: it's a wiki, I'll edit if I feel like it. I tinkered a bit, but it was remarkably accurate before I got there.

On game systems

I remember my friend's Atari 2600 from the early eighties. I so wanted to be able to play Pitfall! at my house. But I never could. And in the intervening years I've been infatuated with various other games but I've never done anything about it.

Until this year. Well, last year, really. After playing with my nephew's PSP on vacation, I let my gadget lust win and I asked for a PSP for Christmas. I've been happily roaring around the anti-gravity track in Wipeout Pure ever since. I may soon succumb to another temptation and buy Mercury.

On home renovation, not

We had big plans, and even invested a little bit in fleshing them out, but when all was said and done, there was more saying than doing. A little too expensive just at the moment. Still, we have some good ideas and we'll do some smaller reno projects on our own. On the plus side, this way I get to do more of the actual work, which I enjoy.

On design, bad

Ok, this seems a little peevish of me, but it keeps on bugging me so I'm going to get it off my chest. The coffee maker broke. This is not a situation that can be abided. We bought a new one. (Actually, Deb bought a new one because I was at the TAG f2f when it broke. Deb's Law: If it's going to go wrong, it will do so while I'm on the road.)

It works well, it makes fine coffee, I'm content with my brew. What bugs the heck out of me is the timer.

That dial is usually a clock-face (with the conceit of a faux sweeping second hand even). When you brew a pot of coffee the face becomes completely “blank” and slowly turns black. When the face is completely black, the machine beeps four times, the heating element turns off, and the clock face returns.

Ok, so look at that clock face. How much time do I have left? In other words, how long does it take the dial to turn completely black? (In fairness, the machine does tell you, but I've blurred out the tiny little numbers.)

Answer below.

On The GIMP, questions about

I like the GIMP. I use it all the time for touching up my digital photographs.

So tell me, is there any way to make it remember which panels I have open (usually, LayersColors and FiltersEnhance)? It seems quite happy to remember that the layers dialog is open, so why do I have to re-open the other panels that I want every single time I start the app? Several fruitless search episodes have failed to yield joy.

On Firefox, questions about

Speaking of no joy. I never use drag-and-drop. It just isn't in my repertoire of actions. So can I turn it off in Firefox? Several times a day I seem to accidentally do some sort of “click-drag” action that leaves Firefox (and/or Gnome) in some weird state where the cursor is holding something and there's nothing I can do until it “lets go”. Often, hitting Esc clears up the problem. But not often enough.

Coffee Maker Answer

Not one hour, as all the clock-face intuition in the world would suggestI suppose one minute or one day would be equally intuitive answers, but neither is reasonable in this application., but two hours. So there's about 35 minutes left on that dial. Donald Norman would not approve. There, I got that off my chest. Thank you. I feel better.

Comments

I never use drag-and-drop. It just isn't in my repertoire of actions. So can I turn it off in Firefox? Several times a day I seem to accidentally do some sort of “click-drag” action that leaves Firefox (and/or Gnome) in some weird state where the cursor is holding something and there's nothing I can do until it “lets go”.

I have the same problem, all the time, and it drives me absolutely batshit. I've simply resovled to try to be more conscientious about what I do with my mouse. *sigh*....

—Posted by Darren Chamberlain on 09 Jan 2006 @ 04:27 UTC #

The problem with Gnome integration in Firefox 1.5 is described as fixed in what will become 1.5.0.1.

—Posted by thirdhand on 26 Jan 2006 @ 01:41 UTC #

re: Firefox. Thank goodness!

—Posted by Norman Walsh on 26 Jan 2006 @ 04:34 UTC #