January 21, 2013
Hack tutorer søges

Jeg er gået i gang med at samle på nørder jeg kender, der kunne finde på at hjælpe børn i gang med at hacke. Det tænkte udgangspunkt er modding i Minecraft, for så er det kode man får skrevet lidt sjovere og mere tilgængeligt. Jeg er stødt på projektet ScriptCraft der propper javascript ind i Minecraft, så man kan bygge med kode. Det er meget tilgængeligt og i øvrigt under udvikling. Jep, det taler mest til drenge, nok - forslag, der adresserer lige netop det, modtages.

Vil du være med til at hjælpe børnene i gang? Så læg en kommentar eller send en mail til dee@classy.dk. Hvad rammen lige bliver finder vi ud af hen ad vejen, men jeg snakker med forskellige om det.

Posted by Claus at 01:04 PM
September 04, 2010
Frolicking with Froyo

When I've been doing stuff with Morten, we've always had a basic dividing line in how we are interested in things, which has been very useful in dividing the work and making sure we covered the idea properly. Morten is intensely interested in use, and I'm intensely interested in capabilities and potentials.
Any good idea needs both kinds of attention, so it's good to work with someone else who can really challenge your own perspective. If only we had a third friend who was intensely interested in making money we could have really made something of it. It's never too late, I suppose.

Anyway, my part of the bargain is capabilities. Yesterday evening, and this morning, I added another year worth of lifetime to my aging* Android phone, one of the original Google G1 development phones.
It's a slow, old device compared to the current android phones. Yesterday, however, by installing Cyanogenmod on the phone, I upgraded to Android 2.2 - Froyo - and boy, that's a lot of capability I just added to the phone**.

First, about the lifetime: Froyo has a JIT, an accelerator if you're not a technical person, which makes it possible for my aging phone to keep up with more demanding applications, expecting better hardware.

Secondly, Froyo is supported by the Processing environment, for experimental programming, so now I can build experimental touch interfaces in minutes, using the convenience of Processing. This makes both Processing and the phone infinitely more useful.

Thirdly, Froyo has a really nice "use your phone as an Access Point"-app for sharing your 3G connection over WiFi***. I had a hacked one for Android 1.6 as well and occasionally this is just a really nice appliance to have in a roomfull of people bereft of internet.

Fourth, considering that Chrome To Phone is just an easy demo of the cloud services behind Froyo it sure feels revolutionary. Can't wait to see people maxing out this particular capability.

Fifth, and it feels silly to have to mention this, but Froyo is the first smartphone HW/SW combo you can add storage in a reasonable way, i.e. moving apps + everything to basically unlimited replaceable storage.

On top of all the conveniences of not being locked down, easy access to the file system, easy backup of text messages and call logs; this feels like a nice edition of Android to plateau on for a while. If the next year or so is more about hardware, new hardware formats, like tablets, and just polishing the experience using all of these new capabilities, I think that'll work out great.

* (1.5 yrs old; yes it sucks that this is 'old'. We need to do better with equipment lifetimes)

** I'm going to but a couple of detailed howto posts on the hacks blog over the next couple of days, so you can do the same thing.

*** For Cyanogenmod, you need this.

Posted by Claus at 01:04 PM
October 13, 2009
Exploding the silos once again

It never hurts to repeat a good point: The silos we're all moving into now can all be leapfrogged. The second the silos aren't simplifying, but instead hampering, innovation and expression, they'll start to loose. Maybe they are beginning to loose right now. Google seems intent - in everything but search - to make sure the silo is just a convenience, not in-circumventable fact.
In other silos-are-breaking news: The T-mobile/Sidekick catastrophe, and we could end up on a modern, open, federated communications platform instead of a silo, and a silo so stressed by growth, that it's really hard to get data out of it that is more than 2-3 days old.
Googler's current and ex- are also still working on moving people to open social networks. Open social maybe wasn't really the sweet spot that one hoped for, but new projects are trying to get there. One wonders along the way if Twitter is moving to a Mozilla business model? Free to use, we just sell the behaviour of our users.

Facebook is going to have move as well - just because of the things you can do with data you can get at. What I'm trying to say, really, is that if you plan to be doing something interesting in two years, I would personally bet on desilofication over "better, but closed" data, just on general principle of cycles.

Posted by Claus at 12:31 AM
September 30, 2009
Demodag - nu med temasang

Demo dag - hvor vi bygger det selv
Viser det frem, ikke snakket ihjel
Demo dag, du viser lige ved du vil
Det det en demo dag er til
at vise os at du har skill

Demo dag, hvis du brænder for noget
brænd det dog her, der går ikk' ild i bordet, men hvis nu
at det sker, har vi selv sat ild til meget mere før
så slap af, her' der ikke nogen der dør

Lyder sådan her. Ser sådan her ud.


  • Demo meet-up hver 14. dag. Uforpligtende inspirationsaften på en kaffebar et sted, hvor man kan være nogen stykker. Har du et forslag til et sted? Første gang onsdag d. 14/10.

  • Har du lyst til at være vært til næste demo-aften, eller kender du nogen der vil? En studenterbar, et auditorium, en kantine, et mødelokale - et sted hvor man kan være 20-30 gæster fra 20-22.30, gerne med lokal demoentusiasme, og helst et sted det er OK at vi drikker en øl og en vand.

  • NÆSTE DEMODAG Bliver hos Creuna 1/12 kl 20. Bedre end juleaften. Detaljer følger

  • Nyt site at hænge ud på Nemlig demodag.org

Hey, Claus - hvilke demoer var der så?

Posted by Claus at 11:24 AM
September 01, 2009
Demodag 2 - September 29 in Copenhagen

Feedback on the evening (in danish) here - nascent community site here

Made something that works? Then come show us at another evening of demos.

September 29 - 20:00 at Gjeddegaarden , St. Kannikestræde 10A

- thanks to Martin von Haller Grønbæk for hospitality and BvHD for refreshments.

It's time again to show us what you've made, your stuff that works. Demodag is an event for people who make things and people interested in things made by people who make things. Free and open to attend and to demo.

Sign up here. If you're demoing, you might want to leave your email with a comment on this post as well.

Recap on presentation rules

  • 7 minutes - We talk a few minutes after, while the next presenter gets ready

  • Show, don't tell - We want to see it, not the slide show about it

  • Anything goes - Hardware, Software, Woodware, Silverware - whatever works.

Out of ideas? Well, then you should take up The Demo Challenge

"It improves with age"

- make something that somehow fits that description. You're welcome to demo stuff that does not really match the challenge. Think of it as inspiration, not a constraint.

Can you give me some background?

- if you understand Danish I can, last session was covered in the weekly Tech Radio Show on DR, Harddisken - archived here. Call for participation of the first event was here.

What's the hash tag?

The official hash tag is #demodag

Can I win anything?

Fame and glory, obviously - there will be symbolic awards for hacking as well.

Posted by Claus at 10:48 AM
August 31, 2009
Det skal gøre ondt for at gøre godt

Det er ikke rigtigt i virkeligheden, men der findes et perspektiv på "det gode", hvor det gode i det gode ikke er de gode konsekvenser, men ofret. Det gode er en straf man finder sig i, fordi man er et godt menneske. Man ser det ofte i projekter der eksplicit mener at gøre det gode. Man ser det ofte i design. En vandspareanordning, der fortæller dig hvornår dit brusebad har varet for længe (istedet for en anordning der genbruger badevandet f.eks., eller noget andet der løser problemet på en anden måde). Personligt opfatter jeg også planlægning og personlige produktivitetsystemer som GTD som eksempler i genren, selv om jeg ved at de - ligesom gulv-, op- og tøjvask - har reelle nyttige effekter.
Tankegangen har mængder af fucked op konsekvenser. Fattigdom bliver moralsk i sig selv - og er man ufattig skal man altså straffes for at komme moralsk ajour. Hvorimod krav om almindelig gensidig ansvarlighed til den allerede udfordrede selvfølgelig bliver fuldstændig urimelige.
Det meningsløse CO2-tælleri har meget af tanken indbygget.

Hvad angår personlig produktivitet, så har jeg tænkt mig at gøre noget ved det via et passivt pointsystem som muligvis vil blive demoet på en snarlig demodag.

Posted by Claus at 11:33 AM
June 30, 2009
Anatomy of a mashup

So, yesterday afternoon, Morten suggested it would be cool if there was a site that could score the days at Roskilde against personal preferences as expressed through Last.fm.
Indeed it would be, and since Morten does nice minimal interfaces and I do data gathering and mixing, we agreed to split the work, and build the Best day at Roskilde-finder.

It's worthwhile to have a look at what infrastructure we have used for this and which situational hacks are involved. I didn't have to scrape the concert program myself, as Steffen had already done that, through Yahoo's YQL.
What I needed to do is mine Last.fm's API for relevancy for those bands to merge with the user's favorite bands.
Present that to Morten's website as simply as possible and let Morten make a useful interface for the data.

It doesn't quite end there, though. Morten had previously exploited live play information from Danish National Radio to create a radio station persona on Last.fm.
Through Spotify, using Spotify's Last.fm integration he is also building a Roskilde Festival persona.
- these will give more general than personal answers: "If you're the kind of person listening to this radio station you will like".

It's interesting how much infrastructure is available - and useful - for a mashup like this.

We're using Yahoo, Last.fm, Danish Radio's website, Roskilde's website and Spotify as data sources/web services - and combining preexisting situational hacks from 3 people, on top of the obvious webservers and direct hacking.
These resources can be combined, and hidden away, in less than 10 hours to produce a coherent, simple and fun website.

Add instant distribution through Facebook and Twitter (Facebook wins) and there's a nice useful bit of mashup for an intended audience of 200-10000 people.

Posted by Claus at 12:48 PM
June 09, 2009
Det er idag der er Demo Dag

Du kan stadig nå at være med - både som tilskuer og som demoist. Det ser ud som om vi har alt fra meditation til gigabit hardware på programmet, med stop v. adskillige web hacks. Der vil være hardware, software, ild og sukker. Og færdighedsgrad (alle betydninger) fra "kun lige præcis" til færdige produkter.

Vognmagergade 11, i aften kl 20, men skriv dig lige på listen.

Posted by Claus at 12:25 PM
May 15, 2009
Littlebits - elektronik der er lige så nemt som LEGO

Littlebits er et sammenhængende sæt af meget enkle elektronikelementer - i stedet for at samle dem ved at lodde eller på en særlig plade så forbinder man dem bare med magneter. Og magneterne giver det ektra touch at man ikke kan vende komponenterne forkert, magnetenderne er sat på så det hele passer. Så nu kan man samle knapper og måledimser og batterier lige så let som man kan samle LEGO. Smart.

Der er et interview med skaberen på We Make Money Not Art.

Posted by Claus at 02:25 PM