Archive for the ‘Random’ Category

Ideas I should have patented…

Saturday, December 12th, 2009

I have noticed that I have had some pretty good ideas growing up. Unfortunately, I neglected to ever actually pursue these ideas, thinking myself either incapable of completing or engineering these ideas, or because I simply forgot. Without Further ado, I give you the things I should have patented:

1. The scroll-ball

In the nineties, I got my first mouse with a scroll wheel. Such a novelty! So convenient for surfing the net, and equally great for working in Photoshop! Not long after having one, I thought it would be super to combine that technology with the already popular trackball, and make a super mouse that could scroll both up and down as well as left and right. Well, I never did anything with that idea, and 6 years later apple released the “Mighty Mouse.” I got my wish (but no cash… Bummer).

2. The touch-mouse

Once the “Mighty Mouse” (Now just Apple Mouse) was invented, I thought about how it was able to sense that fingers are present in either the left or right positions, thus knowing when to right versus left click. I found out that the principle of finger detection is the same technology they use for track pads on notebooks. I thought to myself that having a track pad on the top of the mouse instead of the scroll ball would be way cooler. There would be no ball to clean, etc. Well, Apple did finally do that too when they created the “Magic Mouse.” It also has multitouch capabilities as an added bonus!

3. No-Glasses 3-D Screen

Remember those cool pictures that moved when you changed the relative viewing angle? (lenticular animation) Well, that is because there are 2 or 3 images split up into vertical line segments, and spread across the whole area of the image with a prismatic lens on top which allows only one set of vertical lines to be seen at a time. Well, this seemed like a perfect technology to combine with the high-pitched LCDs. If 2 images (stereoscopic) were positioned in vertical lines and placed behind this same type of prismatic lens so that the left eye and right eye will only see isolated images, the effect of 3D would be produced. Well, I didn’t jump on this idea, and now it’s been patented and even demonstrated. This example is not exactly the same, but it uses the same principle involving a lenticular sheet, and augments it with 16 projectors.

4. The Digital Rubick’s Cube

Back in the day when I first learned to solve a Rubick’s Cube, I thought to myself that it would be quite convenient to have a a digital one capable of shuffling itself or solving itself. Well, many years later such a thing was created. It’s called the “Rubik’s Touchcube.” To bad I never saw it through to actually creating it. I must say however that mine would have been cooler…

I’m sure there are more, but this is good for now.

Terminal Tip: Drop Box

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008


Where I work, we are often placing files from one Mac to another by placing files in each others “Drop Boxes.” (~/Public/Drop Box) This is a very nice system, however it does have it’s flaws. Not all computers seem to experience this, but for myself and others where I work, we found that the files retained the permissions of the user who dropped the file in the drop box instead of inheriting the permissions of the drop box, which would make the recipient the owner of the file. This isn’t a huge deal. It just means that we had to save a copy of the file, or get info and change the permissions in order to edit and save. My clever brother helped me by giving me a command to run in terminal that makes any file placed within the specified folder inherit the permissions. In this case it’s using ACLs (Access Control Lists). Below is the command.

sudo chmod -R +a "USER allow readattr,readextattr,readsecurity,list,search,read,execute,file_inherit,directory_inherit,delete,writeextattr,writeattr,write,append,delete_child,add_file,add_subdirectory" /Users/USER/Public/Drop\ Box

Be sure to put your correct user name in place of the word USER in the above command. I hope this helps someone who is experiencing the same problem.

Skeet Shooting

Sunday, July 6th, 2008


Have you ever been skeet shooting? It’s fun. Maybe it’s a guy thing, but having a gun and being able to blow up a little clay disc hurling through the air is just cool. It’s been at least 4 years since I have been skeet shooting. Needless to say, I was out of practice. My first round I only scored an 11 out of 25, and my second was 14.

For those of you who don’t know, in skeet shooting, the shooters take aim at small frisbieish clay things called pigeons, which are fired from the left and right. We take shots from different stations in a semi circular layout. We get 24 different shots, and one extra shot in case we miss one, totalling a perfect score of 25.

I went again the following weekend, and my score jumped from 14 to 17. So, I’m making improvements. Yay!. Well, if you ever get the chance, I recommend trying it out.