Archive for May, 2005


I really need to work a bit more on this trip journal. I’m forgetting it all even with the notes I took on the road. (1 : 2 : 3)

2005/04/26 Dar Salam Hotel Simenti 1.5hr 15000cfa

We got up bright and early the next morning. We had asked our contact in the village to let the hotel know to come and get us

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Project for the day involves interacting with a Flash movie from Javascript. In the process of searching for how to do it I found a neat example. I’m pretty sure the livejournal link cleaner will eat this link, so instead paste this long link:'','Men%20v.%20Browser','toolbar=no,resizable=no,scrollbars=no,left='+(document.width/2)+'px,top=300px,width=300px,height=165px').focus()

Sometimes you have to click it once to get it started.

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Épreuve des Fatayers

This past Wednesday, May 25th, was Africa Day. It is a celebration of the various African nations’ independence from colonial rule and marks the day in 1963 when the Organization of African Unity was formed. The OAU has since become just the AU, but we’ve still got the day.

School was out and the Peace Corps bureau was closed in celebration. So, seeking to find an activity that properly embraced the Africa Day ideals of freedom, liberty and self-determination, we decided to have a fatayer eating contest. Fatayers are a magical food that, much like the peoples of Africa, come in a variety of shapes and sizes. What unifies them all together is their ground meat filling and fried doughy exterior. The meat can be camel or goat or even beef. The bread might be light and fluffy or dense or crispy and flaky. It all makes no difference; if there is meat, bread and frying: you’ve got a fatayer.

The particular fatayers for our challenge were from Snak Irak. The dough is fairly light, about the consistency of a hotdog bun. The meat is goat, I think. Triangular, about four inches on a side and at about a pound of well-greased heft; they are a hearty meal. They are sort of big though and a bit intimidating, so we only had three contestants:

Read the rest of this entry »

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I ran across an online MBTI on okcupid in octaviancmb‘s journal. It came out as expected. I’ve been noticing feeling both I and F as of late. I’m always N, and my number of ongoing projects (seven) versus completed projects in the last two weeks (zero) can attest to the P.



One of the things I found interesting on okcupid is in breaks down test results by demographics and tells you how you relate to others of your age and sex. Unfortunately that information is only available right after you take it and my damned browser crashed. You can still get a comparison, but it is now against the entire population. (I’m assuming, it says “other people” for who it is compared to.)


That looks about right. Especially the 1% on the N. I only know a handful of people who might be as intuitive as me, madmaddy123 being one of them. The only thing that confuses me is the percentile on T-F. It looks like it is saying that I was in the 9th percentile for Fs, but 86% is a pretty strong preference and I really can’t imagine it being that low. My only guess is that this is a demographic profile and I’m more emotionally inclined than 91% of their young white male respondents.

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Reconnaissance des Visages

Human beings have an amazing ability to recall and recognize faces. As highly social animals, we are sensitive to minute changes in the facial musculature as cues to emotional state and intent. There is an area of the temporal lobe called the fusiform face area that is only active in the recognition of faces. We can see houses, cars and camels, but the FFA only works when we are looking at a face.

Our speed and perspicuity in face recognition makes realistic representation of faces one of the more difficult tasks to undertake in art. Similarly the editing of images of faces is a pain. Which brings me to my project for the morning. I’ve been converting some pictures from another volunteer to a form suitable for use in a presentation, but some of them needed editing. For example:

Red Eyed Volunteers

It is a good shot and there are a couple stories that involve Mark, Erin and I, so I like us together. The problems are the eyes. Mine and Erin’s being quite red and Mark working the dazed look. Fixing the redeye is not too bad. Fixing Mark is a different problem though. I just can’t seem to get both the eyes looking the same way. It is a real pain, but I still think that lazy eyed is a better look for him than stoned.

Edited Volunteers

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With half a dozen projects pressing, I needed very much not to have received a link to the Perry Bible Fellowship. Well, I only blew about fifteen minutes on it. That’s something at least&hellip

Moon is Full
Moon Bunny
Bacon Egg

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I skipped breakfast and the only edible thing in my lab is a box of Pepto-Bismol tablets in my bag. Can one overdose on pink bismuth? Say for instance if one were to eat ten of them over a six hour period of working on the computer? Well, I’ll know soon enough. ☺

This reminds me of being a kid and going on a Flinstones’ vitamins binge. They say that the worst that resulted from that was some minor liver damage. Mmm, Dino…

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Script du jour: any images larger than 640×480 should be sized down to fit within those bounds:

for file in *; do
  info=$(identify "$file" | sed -e 's/.* ([[:digit:]]+)x([[:digit:]]+) .*$/1x2/');
  if [[ ${info%x*} -gt $W || ${info#*x} -gt $H ]]; then
    echo "Resizing: $file";
    convert -resize ${W}x${H} "$file" "${file%$ext}sized.$ext";

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Another old but good bit of internet flotsam:

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