Land of Lisp

September 5, 2011

Seen via Planet Emacsen: the Land of Lisp.

It’s a Lisp book that is, in its own way, even crazier than the dearly-departed _why’s (Poignant) Guide to Ruby. Check out this sample of the comic on their homepage:

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HOWTO write a Perl Obfu

September 5, 2011

Here’s one I found once a long time ago and keep thinking of randomly. jynx on Perlmonks explains what makes and breaks an Obfuscated Code entry. Does anyone still write Perl? Does anyone still write (intentionally) obfuscated Perl? Still, I really like the way he offers examples and counter-examples of each principle.

2) pack/unpack is not obfuscation

The reason i list the counter-example is because it is not unpacking anything like what you think at first glance. While the obfu itself does need some work, that is an acceptable use of unpack. On the other hand, looking at the example we see a fairly common use of unpack: get the string and unpack it, oh look the string is japh. While a packed string is line noise, it’s easy to see past it and note what the code is doing if it’s a simple obfu.

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September 4, 2011

Since I have a tag dedicated to version control, I thought to use it to link to iolaus, a git porcelain that emulates darcs. It’s written by the same guy who wrote darcs, possibly as a one-off project. Perhaps it was meant to solve the darcs "exponential merge time" problem. The same problem has been drastically improved in Darcs 2, and iolaus hasn’t been updated since March 2010, so it probably isn’t worth worrying a lot about.

I realized that the semantics of git are actually not nearly so far from those of darcs as I had previously thought. In particular, if we view each commit as describing a patch in its "primitive context" (to use darcs-speak), then there is basically a one-to-one mapping from darcs’ semantics to a git repository. The catch is that it must be a git repository with multiple heads!

Fortunately, this is not such a foreign concept to git. In fact, git has a whole framework to help users manage repositories with multiple heads (see, e.g. checkout and branch). So it’s not so very foreign at all. There are just a couple of major differences how git works. First, in git your working directory will only reflect one of the heads, while in darcs (or iolaus) the working directory reflects the union of all changes in the repository.

Just to make things even more interesting, it’s written in Go.

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Analysis of U Chicago graffiti

September 4, 2011
Tags: ,

Seen on Slashdot: Crescat Graffiti, Vita Excolatur.

The graffiti preserved in Pompeii after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius provided unique insights into Roman street life. The Mayan graffiti found in Tekal and the graffiti left by Vikings also give us small glimpses into the past. What kind of insight might a longitudinal study of the graffiti on the walls at the University of Chicago’s main library provide into the lives and minds of this community of college students?

The objects of student love vary widely, with "Puerto Rico," "this silence," "Tiramisu," and other miscellanea appearing alongside the usual references to people, school, and life in general.

Each phrase is linked to a photo of the graffito in question on Flickr.

It looks like the project itself has a website of the same name.

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Another Steampunk Game Boy Mod

September 4, 2011

Steampunk is timeless, right? Seen on Tinycartridge: ` Thretris’s steampunk Game Boy mod <>`_.

Full gallery here.

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Obama supports $675K file sharing verdict

September 4, 2011

Politics never go out of date, right? This came up at least a year and a half ago. Via Suzanne, who writes, "Not happy about this." Wired writes about Sony BMG v. Tanenbaum.

The Justice Department, where President Barack Obama has tapped five former RIAA lawyers to serve, said copyright infringement "creates a public harm that Congress determined must be deterred."

Joel fights back, the website supporting the defendant. Wikipedia coverage. The fines were later reduced to $67.5K (one-tenth of what was originally asked), but both parties filed notice to appeal.

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Batman Villains

February 6, 2011

Seen on famous Batman villains, reimagined.

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A Castle on the Ocean

January 30, 2011

Followed some links about papercraft. Apparently a guy in Japan has spent four years assembling a papercraft castle, complete with electric lighting and a train.

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The Mountain Goats and Kaki King – Thank You Mario, But Our Princess Is In Another Castle

January 2, 2011

The title for this page on Buzzfeed is "If the Mountain Goats scored Super Mario". I was expecting some fan tribute thing. I didn’t expect this to be awesome, but it was.

It’s sung from the perspective of Toad, who is at best a non-character.

Lyrics: Thank You Mario, But Our Princess Is In Another Castle on SongMeanings.

Stereogum has an mp3 download of Thank You Mario, But Our Princess Is In Another Castle by The Mountain Goats and Kaki King.

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Manga Farming

August 31, 2010

Seen on manga farming. says "I’m a firm believer in using books every way possible. Once the stories are consumed, why not let there be radish sprouts."

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