October 30, 2007
I’m making a website that will let you make competitions to achieve your goals. I need a name for this site. In the spirit of what the site will do, I’m hosting a competition to name it.
The prize will be a book of your choice over twenty and under fifty dollars. I and my partner will be judging the competition. The name should not be a hassle to type into your browser’s address bar. It can’t already be taken by another company or website. And the name need not be related to the company concept, as long as it is good.
Either email me (primevector *at* gmail *dot* com) or write it in the comments for this post.
Make sure to include:
- A way to contact you
- Your suggested name (submit as many names as you want)
The competition will end on November 7th. I will announce the winner and send the prize off at that point. I will try and contact the winner a few times, but if that doesn’t work, the prize goes to second place, even if we don’t use that suggested name.
October 7, 2007
I have achieved many interesting effects in my Zen meditation, even though I know this not to be the classic point of such meditation. The behavior I am most happy with is an ability to recognize thoughts I don’t like and put them out of my mind. Being able to observe my thoughts more thoroughly has resulted in an ability to control them.
Thinking along this line, I decided to meditate while looking at an analog clock. I was wondering if I could manipulate my perception of time. Even after deciding this, I put it off for quite some time. Today, I finally sat down and looked at the clock. When I normally meditate, I, “Just sit.” This time I came at it with idea of, “Just experiencing the clock.” The meditation was very uneventful, with the periodic thought slipping in and out and various refocusings on the clock.
Afterwards, I got up, walked downstairs, and put the clock back up on the wall. I talked to my brother and watched him play videogames. While I did this, I became aware of various peculiar effects. It was as if I had split my perception to handle different zones of observation. I could see the videogame, hear my brother, and it also felt like my mind was engaging in something I could not identify. I wouldn’t characterize it as zoning out. I would say I became focused on three separate activities. This sounds antithetical to the idea of focus, but the perception was hard to describe because of its newness. Perhaps it would be better to say, these three activities I was engaged in felt very separate, the unative nature of my perception broke down a little.
Reacting to this new sensitivity, I also became aware of the spacial vectors of my limb movements. I had very precise idea of the direction and speed my hands and neck were moving. My sensation of balance was also affected, but without any disorientation.
I’m going to continue with the clock meditation, especially after such a surprising list of effects.
October 5, 2007
For each age of development there is a corresponding question and answer. The synergy between asking the question and desiring the answer, drives the development on both sides of the pair.
- What do computers mean to numbers? Math calculators.
- What do computers mean to businesses? Financial calculators.
- What do computers mean to individuals? Desktop publishing.
- What do computers mean to other computers? Internet.
- What do computers mean to society? Social networks.
What is the question that will precede the age of social networks? In these steps we see the originally large computer scale down, as the quantity of computers increase. As the scale of computers approaches the nano-level we will see the ubiquity of computers accelerate. Imagine being networked to computers in your liver. Would it be harder to drink a lot? Would you just close the liver control panel? If you could see your heart rate graphed next to your respiration rate, would you get tense in the same way?
And what if people leave their bodies’ networks open for others to view? You could see a member of the opposite sex blush in a totally new way.
And what about the rest of our environment? You could see that your plants are drying up and your car will tell you the amount of pollution as you drive. We may become environmentalists by going beyond the networking ability of our born-with sensory mechanisms. Maybe the next question is, “What do computers mean to everything?”
October 2, 2007
I wanted to set a default, checked radio button in a group of radio buttons. Though Agile Development w/Rails is a great book, it doesn’t tell you much about the radio buttons. And most of the examples on the web where unsatisfactory for finding this little detail. Perhaps my search queries were poorly written, but given that I had trouble finding the solution it will probably be valuable to post my own.
The problem lies in that I didn’t quite understand this: “If the current value of method is tag_value the radio button will be checked.” – Rails API for Radio Button Besides, I wanted to arbitrarily set which button was checked. I knew how to do this in normal html/js, but I waned to pass it the adjustment in RoR. In the end, it was actually pretty simple.
All you do is add “:checked = true“
Your Ruby looks like this:
<%= form.radio_button :ending, “true”, :checked => true %>
And the page source looks like this:
<input checked=“checked” id=“competition_ending_true” name=“competition[ending]” type=“radio” value=“true” />
This should give you a radio button that is checked by default.
If there are better ways to do it or anything else I’ve missed, there’s always room in the comments for improvements. Rock the RoR!