Sunday, July 3, 2016

Glorious Girl Running Away From a Peacock (Video: Peacock Attack Photoshop Battle)

Family trip to petting Zoo didn’t go as planned, and then internet response is hilarious. The girl might have gotten too close to a peacock, which was not interested in being petted. Instead, it chased the girl. Photoshoppers couldn't resist battling over the glorious picture, turning the little girl into an Olympic runner, a fierce superhero and even a Game of Thrones warrior.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Howard Zane, Working on the Railroad: A World of Model Trains

"The only rule is that there are no rules. The hobby is about limitless imagination. Every skill you would need probably to navigate life can be found in this hobby. Well, there's electronics, carpentry, tools, history.. It goes on and on and on."

For more than 30 years, Howard Zane has been working on the railroad in the basement of his home in Columbia, Maryland.

"Total of what you see here is about almost 3,000 square feet of trains. There's about 15,000 hours in the land. See, I'm a stickler. Everything has to be designed and built by me."

Everything that is in detailed miniature, from the billboards above the tunnels to the soda machines to the water towers. The retired industrial designer has expanded his basement twice to accommodate his model train set's ever-growing sprawl.

"Down here on the layout there's about 150 locomotives. Figures, there's over 6,000 figures on the way up. Automobiles, about 600 automobiles. The track is 23 scale miles. And the scale is actually 3.5 millimeters to the foot, or 1/87 actual size."

Zane got his first train set from his father when he was 3 years old. The hobby is chugged into every part of his life, including places where it wasn't exactly welcome.

"I got married the first time in 1962. Driving down to Fort Walton Beach, stop at a convenience store on the outskirts of town, and there I bought this magazine called Railroad Model Craftsman. Spent the whole honeymoon, locked myself in the restroom and just read this thing cover to cover. My wife wasn't too happy haha.."

The marriage didn't last, but Zane discovered a lifelong passion.

"Seeing it run is very enjoyable. It's moving art, which I like, but I love building it and creating it. This is my life. I love it."

But sadly for Zane, few of the young people he meets seem to share his enthusiasm. Model railroading isn't exactly catching on with kids these days.

"I got seven grandkids that think their grandpop's a nut. The grandkids are into their iPods or whatever pods or whatever you call those things. They come and visit and they're like this (bussy wiht their "smart" devices), all night long."

Then again, says Zane, who spends about 40 hours a week fussing over things like miniature maple trees and tiny electric lights, most people just don't get it.

"I have several visitors. Whe have open houses and some of the comments I could write a whole book on. Some of the people ask me if I set up every Christmas or when do I take it down. Everybody equates model railroading with the proverbial loop around the Christmas tree, and it's not that at all. It's a year-round hobby."

A hobby, Zane says that never grows old.

"The thrill of accomplishment is overwhelming. I can't explain how wonderful it is. See, I'm totally stuck in the mid-20th century. I can't get out of it. I try to apply for admission to the 21st century, but they won't let me in. And that's fine, this is my time capsule.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Amazing Star Wars Miniature Landscape by Adrian Weinberg

Inspired by the planet Dagobah. In the Star wars films, this is where Luke Skywalker crashes his spaceship and meets Yoda for the first time.

The 'Dagobah' terrarium is approximately 1 metre wide and high, and uses plants from Victoria as its base. The bottom layer comprises larger chunks of charcoal, which provides the drainage system of the terrarium and – due to its carbon content –also filters and absorbs bad smells. For the final layers, Weinberg uses Sphagnum moss and Peat moss.

The two walls on either side of the terrarium are made from gold vine and are one of the most identifiable aspects of this installation. To top it off, Weinberg adds mist and, of course, a crashed spaceship front and centre – complete with smoke coming out of it! – while Yoda looks on from his perch in the trees.

Creating for Weinberg is all about experimentation. "Trying and trying and trying again seems to be a recurring theme," he explains. "But eventually it gets all 'Jedi' and you throw things together while emptying your mind, and always surprise yourself with the result.”

Weinberg explains the design process as a 'mad science', which develops naturally as he experiments with different plants and rocks. One piece of advice he gives for anyone wanting to design more difficult terrariums is to always buy more of the plants, rocks and other design tools than you need – for the purpose of trial and error.

Art of Kendal Murray

Artist Kendal Murray builds miniature mixed-media sculptures that take viewers on a playful and imaginative journey. Using tiny toy figures and objects, Murray builds small worlds filled with creative memories, daydreams, and fantasies. The artist says, "The idea of creating these miniature works came from dream states and how we are able to play with our own identity, to play with different roles we take on in our dream state. So the miniature works serve as a metaphor for intuitive thoughts."

To construct the sculptures, Murray dips the figures into glue and then uses tweezers to delicately and precisely place them into the scenes—all of the which are set on unexpected objects like inside of a glass tea pot, on top of a small purse, or on one side of a compact mirror. By using such a specific base for each arrangement, Murray defines the boundaries of her story and invites viewers to peer in closely to get a better look. Each work is just a snapshot, but exactly what the story is about is left up to the viewer to decide. While inspecting the work, viewers will quickly find themselves inventing imaginative narratives about the characters and events.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Review: Oracle PL/SQL for Dummies

This book doesn't include everything you need to know about PL/SQL. However, it does provide many examples of good coding practice, and it warns you about what to avoid when writing code. We are experienced Oracle professionals who have designed and built many working systems and have writing many thousands of lines of PL/SQL code. The information we provide in this book should whet your appetite for discovering many of the ways in which you can use PL/SQL to communicate with a relational database. We also point you to numerous other handy resources that can help you consolidate and expand your knowledge of this programming language. This book gives you the core information that every PL/SQL developer should know. When we started writing this book, we asked many of our friends and colleagues in the industry what they thought PL/SQL developers should know. If you practice everything we show you in this book, you'll be on your way to becoming an excellent developer. This book is written for people just getting started with the PL/SQL language but does assume that you have some programming language experience. You should understand the basics of computer programming and be familiar with SQL in order to benefit from the information contained in this book. If you have some basic computer programming experiende and are planning to work in the Oracle environment as an application developer, this book is for you. If your goal is to become a database administrator (DBA), it might be a good additional reference, but you should see Oracle 9i For Dummies (latest version as of this writing), by Carol McCullough-Dieter, published by Wiley, or other books about Oracle 10g for information relevant for DBAs.

Review: Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices, 2nd Edition

In this compact book, Steven Feuerstein, widely recognized as one of the world's leading experts on the Oracle PL/SQL language, distills his many years of programming, teaching, and writing about PL/SQL into a set of best practices-recommendations for developing successful applications. Covering the latest Oracle release, Oracle Database 11g, Feuerstein has rewritten this new edition in the style of his bestselling Oracle PL/SQL Programming. The text is organized in a problem/solution format, and chronicles the programming exploits of developers at a mythical company called My Flimsy Excuse, Inc., as they write code, make mistakes, and learn from those mistakes-and each other. This book offers practical answers to some of the hardest questions faced by PL/SQL developers, including:

  • What is the best way to write the SQL logic in my application code?
  • How should I write my packages so they can be leveraged by my entire team of developers?
  • How can I make sure that all my team's programs handle and record errors consistently?

Oracle PL/SQL Best Practices summarizes PL/SQL best practices in nine major categories: overall PL/SQL application development; programming standards; program testing, tracing, and debugging; variables and data structures; control logic; error handling; the use of SQL in PL/SQL; building procedures, functions, packages, and triggers; and overall program performance. This book is a concise and entertaining guide that PL/SQL developers will turn to again and again as they seek out ways to write higher quality code and more successful applications. "This book presents ideas that make the difference between a successful project and one that never gets off the ground. It goes beyond just listing a set of rules, and provides realistic scenarios that help the reader understand where the rules come from. This book should be required reading for any team of Oracle database professionals." - Dwayne King, President, KRIDAN Consulting.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Review: Beginning PL/SQL

Get started with PL/SQL, the built-in language that every Oracle developer and database administrator must know, in Beginning PL/SQL, a fast-paced and example-filled tutorial. Learn from author Don Bales extensive experience to discover the most commonly used aspects of PL/SQL, without wasting time with obscure and obsolete features. Bales takes his 20+ years of experience and a wealth of statistics he's gathered on PL/SQL usage over those years and applies the 80/20 rule: cover what's most needed and used by PL/SQL professionals and avoid what's not necessary! The result is a book that covers all the key features of PL/SQL without wasting your time discussing esoteric and obsolete parts of the language. Learn what really matters, so that you can get to work feeling confident with what you know about PL/SQL. Discover the 20% of PL/SQL that gives you 80% of the bang! Key topics covered include variables and datatypes, executing statements, working with cursors, real-world objects, debugging, testing, and more. Learn how to write production-level, object-oriented PL/SQL. You'll explore relational PL/SQL, but unlike most other books on the subject, this one emphasizes the use of PL/SQLs object-oriented features as well. Work through real examples of using of PL/SQL. You'll learn PL/SQL by applying it to real-world business problems, not by heavy theory. What you?ll learn How important SQL is in PL/SQL How to use PL/SQL in both a relational and object-relational setting How to create maintainable, modular, and reusable PL/SQL program units The importance of testing as you go, and of building a permanent test plan for each module The importance of building debugging capabilities into your code and building a permanent debug facility for each module The importance of documenting as you go, and in the process building a permanent documentation set for your reusable modules How to apply modular PL/SQL to solve real-world problems Who this book is for Anyone who wants to learn how to create stored procedures against an Oracle database using PL/SQL. Programmers developing applications to be deployed against an Oracle database will need PL/SQL to take full advantage of the power Oracle has to offer. Database administrators who wish to implement functionality exposed only via PL/SQL package interfaces will also find this book useful.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Review: Android Tablets for Dummies

Get the most out of your Android tablet with this full-color reference. Whether you are one of the millions who already have an Android tablet, or you are interested in joining the masses with a first-time purchase, this friendly guide is perfect for you!
The overall idea for this book is to show how things are done on the Android tablet and to help you get the most from the device without overwhelming you with information or intimidating you into despair.
Written by the ultimate For Dummies author Dan Gookin, this funny-but-informative book introduces you to the features of all Android tablets and details the nuances of what makes a tablet more than a smartphone yet different than a computer.
You'll discover how to browse the web on your tablet, get organized with a digital calendar, enjoy music and books, use the camera, access social networks, watch video, and more. Helps you choose the right apps for all your interests out of the thousands of apps that are available for the Android platform. Covers all Android tablets, from popular favorites like the Kindle Fire HD, NOOK HD, and Google Nexus to devices from other manufacturers like Samsung, Asus, Motorola, and others. Walks you through maintenance and common troubleshooting tips. Packed with invaluable information on everything from typing and editing text to customizing and personalizing your tablet, Android Tablets For Dummies gets you off the ground running with your Android tablet!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Review: Handbook of Face Recognition, Second Edition

This highly anticipated new edition provides a comprehensive account of face recognition research and technology, spanning the full range of topics needed for designing operational face recognition systems. After a thorough introductory chapter, each of the following chapters focus on a specific topic, reviewing background information, up-to-date techniques, and recent results, as well as offering challenges and future directions.
Features: fully updated, revised and expanded, covering the entire spectrum of concepts, methods, and algorithms for automated face detection and recognition systems; provides comprehensive coverage of face detection, tracking, alignment, feature extraction, and recognition technologies, and issues in evaluation, systems, security, and applications; contains numerous step-by-step algorithms; describes a broad range of applications; presents contributions from an international selection of experts; integrates numerous supporting graphs, tables, charts, and performance data.

Review: Beginning HTML and CSS

Everything you need to build websites with the newest versions of HTML and CSS. If you develop websites, you know that the goal posts keep moving, especially now that your website must work on not only traditional desktops, but also on an ever-changing range of smartphones and tablets.
This step-by-step book efficiently guides you through the thicket. Teaching you the very latest best practices and techniques, this practical reference walks you through how to use HTML5 and CSS3 to develop attractive, modern websites for today's multiple devices. From handling text, forms, and video, to implementing powerful JavaScript functionality, this book covers it all. Serves as the ultimate beginners guide for anyone who wants to build websites with HTML5 and CSS3, whether as a hobbyist or aspiring professional developer.
Covers the basics, including the different versions of HTML and CSS and how modern websites use structure and semantics to describe their contentsExplains core processes, such as marking up text, images, lists, tables, forms, audio, and video. Delves into CSS3, teaching you how to control or change the way your pages look and offer tips on how to create attractive designsExplores the jQuery library and how to implement powerful JavaScript features, such as tabbed content, image carousels, and moreGet up to speed on HTML5, CSS3, and today's website design with this practical guide. Then, keep it on your desk as a reference!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Online Name Checker

In my previous posts, I have shared some name generator sites for your product, or the domain name of your blog or website. This time I will share some web tool to check whether the name you want has been used by someone else or is still available for you to use in social media.

In my opinion there are two that are absolutely a must: Twitter and Facebook. All the others are optional. Depending on the type of business you have some niche social sites might be compulsory too. For instance, if you are a photographer you should try to secure your name/brand on Flickr too.
That being said, if you have time available it could be a good idea to secure your name on as many social sites as possible. This will solidify your brand and enable you to interact with your audience/customers on many different platforms.
There is a web tool that helps with this task. It is called namechk.

You just need to put the desired name on the search box and the tool will check whether it’s available on not on around 150 social media sites. You can also use it as a list of the sites where you can go and create a profile, as some of them will also let you place a backlink to your website.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

New Facebook Smiley 2012

Well, actually it's not something really new, but I'm sure many many people haven't know about these Facebook updates. As we know, we have been able to insert emoticons when chatting with our friends and colleagues via Facebook. But, do you know that facebook has done an update on their chat system? Yes, they have added quite a lot of new emoticons to be used by the user.

So, how do we use these new emoticons? The trick is similar to the foregoing, by simply typing a combination of the characters when we chat, facebook will automatically display it as a smiley picture. And this is a combination of characters that can be used in order to use the latest facebook emoticons.
And, here's the list:

Smiley Picture Characters Combination
laugh [[f9.laugh]]
sad [[f9.sad]]
angry [[f9.angry]]
sleepy [[f9.sleepy]]
shock [[f9.shock]]
kiss [[f9.kiss]]
inlove [[f9.inlove]]
pizza [[]]
coffee [[]]
rain [[]]
bomb [[f9.bomb]]
sun [[f9.sun]]
heart [[f9.heart]]
heartbreak [[f9.heartbreak]]
doctor [[]]
ghost [[f9.ghost]]
brb [[f9.brb]]
wine [[]]
gift [[]]
adore [[f9.adore]]
angel [[f9.angel]]
baloons [[f9.baloons]]
bowl [[f9.bowl]]
cake [[f9.cake]]
callme [[f9.callme]]
clap [[f9.clap]]
confused [[f9.confused]]
curllip [[f9.curllip]]
devilface [[f9.devilface]]
lying [[f9.lying]]
Enjoy your chat kiss