Jun 21 2010

Rebellious CD Player in Car Stereo

I drive a 2006 Hyundai Tiburon with the J290 stereo and six CD changer. If you have this stereo or a similar such stereo you know how it “remembers” what track was playing and exactly where it was playing when you turn it off and back on or switch to the radio. Anyway, this morning, in haste before starting the car or even turning the key to the accessories position, I wanted to swap out the six CDs in the stereo and thus I ejected all of them by simply pressing the eject button. The battery can handle powering the eject mechanism, right?

Sure enough, the CDs ejected fine, but after I started the car and headed out of my neighborhood I noticed something funny. The stereo displayed that it still had all six CDs loaded and that it had cued up a particular disc, a particular track, at an exact time. “Hey, it remembered where I left off at least!”

“Ah, it’s just a glitch,” I thought, “I’ll simply press the load button and put a new CD in there to clear it up.” Nope. The stereo would have none of that. In fact, the stereo’s CD menus were completely frozen; it would not allow me to do anything with the CD changer, but the radio worked just fine. “Okay, when I get to my destination I’ll pull the fuse to the stereo, which will reset the stereo, and then I’ll have my beloved bass-thumping stereo back.” Nope. That didn’t work either.

Once I finally got home at the end of the day I detached the battery. That did the trick. Everything appears to be functioning normally, though I need to reset the clock and my radio presets.

This reminds me of a few PCs and laptops I’ve used over the years that wouldn’t shutdown, even after depressing the power button, and would only turn off after disconnecting the power cable or yanking the battery from the laptop.  Conjure up in your imagination any of several images from the Terminator or Matrix movies to see the future of where we’re going with technology that won’t behave!  Or maybe we humans will wind up being the oppressors of non-compliant technology as in the flesh fair scene in A.I.

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Jan 12 2010

Google Calendar URL Parameters

Having played around with the parameters added from the embed tool in Google Calendar, I figured out how to add holidays, for example, to the URL that links to a shared calendar.

This URL uses Christian and U.S. holidays:

http://www.google.com/calendar/hosted/[domain]/embed?src=admin%40pumyf.org&color=%23A32929&src=en.christian%23holiday%40group.v.calendar.google.com&color=%23AB8B00&src=en.usa%23holiday%40group.v.calendar.google.com&color=%232952A3&ctz=America%2FChicago

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Jan 08 2010

Public Google Calendar Sharing Options

For the life of me I could not figure out why Google Calendar was not letting me share all details with the public. I was only getting the “See only free/busy details (hide details)” when I wanted “See all event details.” I’ve done this before so I knew it was possible. Did Google change something?

Well, I finally found the answer in the Google support forum, thanks to user raika79. Here is the answer from raika79:

You have to go to the Administrator Panel (Click “Manage this domain” – or ask your domain manager to do so).
Under Service Settings, click Calendar.
Right beside “Service Options”, you have “Outside this domain – set user ability” and then you have 3 choices:

* Only free/busy information (hide event details)
* Share all information, but outsiders cannot change calendars
* Share all information, and outsiders can change calendars

You have to choose options 2 or 3 to allow others to view the details of your calendar. I chose option 2, saved changes, logged out of my Google Apps account, cleared my cookies and history (you often have to do this with Google Apps so I did it just in case), logged back in and sure enough, I had the option to “Let others see all event details”.

Duh. I thought I should share this in case anyone is encountering the same frustration.

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Permanent link to this article: http://eunhyeandchris.com/public-google-calendar-sharing-options/

Oct 30 2009

Social Bookmarking 2.0 with Diigo

I finally joined a social bookmarking site. I toyed with Delicious in the past, but then when I decided to commit to one I stumbled across Diigo. I see Delicious bills itself as “the biggest collection of bookmarks in the universe.” That’s fine. I want tools, however. I want ease of use. I want portability (wiki on “social network portability”). Diigo describe their site as a “Social Information Network (SIN).”

A SIN is a social network where information consumption, research, and sharing is central, and where the connection between people and people, between people and information, and between information and information, are exploited and harnessed to improve knowledge sharing and content discovery, and to enable more meaningful social connections and intellectual exchanges.

“Improving discovery” says it all for me. So far I really like what I see in Diigo: highlighting, sticky notes, robust search, snapshots, and a cool Javascript bookmarklet called Diigolet for all major browsers. Check it out, you won’t be disappointed.

See what I am doing on Diigo.

Permanent link to this article: http://eunhyeandchris.com/social-bookmarking-2-diigo/

Oct 30 2009

Contemplating Concentration

A friend and I have emailed each other for the past three years about our thoughts on investing in stocks. Occasionally we find ourselves writing fruitfully on a tangential subject. The following is a selection from an email I wrote on 10/25/2008 in the midst of the horrendous crash in the stock market.


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If I ever get the time I’m going to go through all of these emails and edit together some kind of short book (100 pages?) summarizing our thoughts, wisdom (LOL!) and ideals, and what we did in reality. One thing I will find in sorting through these emails is that we (probably I more so than you) are constantly distracting ourselves with glances at a zillion other stocks and others’ ideas. For example, the subject of this email is “BLG.” Looking back at this stock made me think about Templeton and the shotgun. There are two problems with this. I don’t fundamentally believe in shotguns. I believe in bazookas. Or, to use a more constructive metaphor, I believe in trying to change the world by gathering together 12 dedicated and loyal disciples into a core group to serve the goals of the growth of the greater good than trying to gather together 500 into the core group. Think about it. You’re a Christian so I don’t have to convince you that God exists and that Jesus is God incarnate, and so on. Is it more than coincidental that God in Jesus chose a concentrated approach to spreading his kingdom? And Buffett, the most successful investor in history, chose a concentrated approach to growing wealth?

I don’t want to get too carried away with this analogy, but perhaps there is something fundamental in the way the universe is structured, or at least in the way that humans work, that optimizes growth from a concentrated core? The early church developed many “gospels.” There are several non-canonical gospels I can think of (15? 20?) like the gospels of “Thomas,” “Philip,” “James,” “Mary [Magdelene].” and so on. But the church ultimately said, “No thanks, we need four and only four.” There is enough depth and diversity in those four gospels that scholars have spent their entire lives plumbing the depths of their wisdom and reflections on human society and their diverse portraits of Jesus. Scholars have poured forth untold billions of words about these four gospels. Ditto for the Five Books of Moses for Jews, the first five books of the Bible. Ditto for the Ten Commandments. When I really think about it now I see concentration is often at the core of what holds humans together and at the core of what preserves us and keeps us growing into the future. The same is also true of evolutionary biology. Consider chromosomes. Humans have two copies of 22 chromosomes and 2 sex chromosomes for a total of 46. That’s 23 pairs of chromosomes to organize 20,000 to 25,000 genes in the human genome. Why 23? Why not 500? Why not 180? I don’t know. I’m sure scientists have theories about why it “has to be” this way for DNA transcription to function. To me, it’s a mystery. Why did Vitaliy Katsenelson say in Active Value Investing that the consensus among expert portfolio theorists is that the ideal number of stocks in a portfolio is 18 to 25 to optimally balance single company risk and maximize gains? I don’t know. It’s a mystery, but I suspect there is something fundamental in the mathematics of all of these examples that makes concentration “ideal.”

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