Category Archives: Technology

My Roomba and I have our 15 minutes of fame!

Today, one of my colleagues in the lab, Daniel, came up to me with a bewildered look on his face, not sure what to say. Finally, he tells me I am on one of his favourite blogs. I tell him, surely you have me confused with someone else.

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Sure enough, there was my face on The Raw Feed. This was my project. It gets better, because there was more!

A link from this article lead me to MIT’s Information Review blog, which published a review of my project last Friday.

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How did this happen? Last week, I attended the HRI 2009 Conference in San Diego, California where I presented my previously blogged first academic publication as a poster. Things went well at the conference! Don’t worry, pictures are coming soon from San Francisco, where I went for a few days before San Diego.

Now I was curious if there was any other coverage of my little Roomba project, so I searched around. I found myself on the front page of BotJunkie as well, a robot blog, with an amusing headline.

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Later in the day, my project made its way onto Gizmodo, a rather popular blog that I read from time to time, with another rather amusing headline. The comments are also quite good.

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As you can imagine, I’m quite excited at the response that my project received. Now I realize it might actually be my mood which causes my Roomba to develop an attitude and refuse to return to its home base, instead hiding out in the most remote place it can find.

UPDATE: My project has now also appeared on Ubergizmo, this time with a bit more mellow headline.

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Based on Alexa and Technorati ratings, both Gizmodo and Ubergizmo are two of the most popular gadget blogs around.

UPDATE 2: My project has just appeared on Engadget. Woohoo! This article sheds light on my little comic.

engadget_article

The Moorings web redesign goes live

My newest web project has gone live. I was tasked to do a redesign of TheMoorings.ca. The old design was created from a template about 5 years ago, and the owner decided it was time for a change.

Here is my design:

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This project was different for me in many ways. This was the first time I used a larger fixed-width design with large photographs everywhere. This can often be a nightmare, but I feel it really added value to this site in promoting the beautiful imagery surrounding this development.

You can view more information about this project in my Portfolio or you can visit the web site itself.

New computer

The biggest news for me lately is that I bought a new computer through an auction at work. Since the computer I was using was going onto 6 years old, it was time for an upgrade. My new machine is a business class machine with Pentium 4 3Ghz processor, 1 GB RAM (upgraded by me from 512), 320 GB SATA hard drive (added by me to the 40 GB it came with). Other less technical conveniences including a quieter operation, smaller overall size, and 8 USB ports. Even the 17 inch CRT monitor it came with was an upgrade for me, and it’s nice to enjoy being able to more things at once with less waiting time.

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I already have everything of mine set up on this machine. I am thinking of trying out Sabayon Linux, which Doug at work highly recommends to me. My distrust and dislike of Microsoft products has been growing in recent times. I think their monopoly will eventually end as differences between operating systems become less important as everything moves to open standards over the web. Microsoft is a company that just isn’t cool and they always try to force things on the market the first time around instead of giving people what they really want when they want it. I could rant all day about Microsoft, but I will spare you some of that for now.

A couple weeks ago now, the Saint John High School web site (which I continue to work on) passed its milestone of 1,000,000 million visitors since 1994. In an ironic twist, a St. Malachy’s (rival high school) graduate received a school history book as recognition for being the lucky visitor. We’re still working on an article for the front page of the site to acknowledge this. Things get a bit slow in the summer.

Shortly after the milestone, I rolled out an update to the site layout that I had been working on for a few weeks which updates the look, and improves many things.

Old section page (since the front page didn’t change as much):

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New section page:

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More colourful pictures and icons were the order of the day.

I intend to get back to blogging a bit more, as I think of things to blog about. I’ve had many ideas over the past month, but I’m also kinda lazy at times.