Boston Crossword Puzzle Tournament

April 14, 2011

On Saturday the 23rd (just over a week from now), I’ll be participating in my first ever crossword puzzle tournament, the Boston Crossword Puzzle Tournament. I don’t expect to come close to winning; it’s mostly just for fun. Hopefully I’ll meet some neat people there. In the distant past, I’d been a very occasional crossword […]

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Don’t steal Mac OS X

January 5, 2009

I was reading through the Mac OS X Internals book, and came across this interesting nugget in chapter 7. In OS X 10.4, a kernel extension maps an anti-piracy message into the 256 bytes of virtual address space of every running process at address 0xFFFF1600, which you can see for yourself by compiling and running […]


Slashdot Easter Egg

October 11, 2008

Did you know that every time you view a page on slashdot, you’re given a random Futurama quote? Most people don’t, since they’re hidden away in the HTTP headers, so you’ll never see them via normal web browsing. I discovered this one time when I was playing around with cURL. Here’s a sample HTTP trace: […]

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Even Sony uses Free Software

September 28, 2008

I just purchased a new 46″ HDTV, the Sony Bravia KDL-46V4100, and boy is it sweet. But I’m not here today to advertise TVs to you. I was reading through the various documentation that came in the box, and I came across a copy of the GNU General Public License and the Lesser General Public […]

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Digital Restrictions Management

September 12, 2008

A topic that has come under a lot of scrutiny recently is that of Digital Rights Management (DRM) in PC games, also referred to by some as Digital Restrictions Management. The most prominent titles featuring DRM are BioShock, Mass Effect, and, most recently, Spore. The sad thing is, DRM hinders the legitimate users without stopping […]


Happy 10th birthday, Google!

September 7, 2008

On September 7, 1998, Google was first incorporated as a privately held company. Happy 10th birthday! What a decade it has been for Google. If you haven’t read it already, I highly recommend reading The Anatomy of a Search Engine, the original paper published by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998 while they were […]

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Pizza Party

September 6, 2008

Domino’s Pizza allows you to order pizza over the Internet. For Unix geeks like Cory Arcangel, the natural extension to that is ordering pizza from the command line. Why bother bother dealing with a web browser and all those messy flash applications when you can just type pizza_party -pmx 2 medium regular to get two […]

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Bad website search

August 10, 2008

The user interface for performing a search on a website is pretty much a solved problem. You enter your search terms, you click the search button, and you get taken to the first page of search results. If what you’re looking for isn’t on the first page of results, you can go to the next […]

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Blog Reactions

July 28, 2008

When I started this blog, I was curious to see how fast the search engines would find it. Googlebot was the first, and I haven’t really been keeping track of it after that. The only known link here at first was from, which apparently has links to newly registered domains. As of this point, […]

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Hello, world!

July 4, 2008

I have a blog. Yay. I’ve been meaning to start a blog for a long time, but I’ve never really gotten around to it. This blog is going to be about programming, software engineering, video games, and whatever the heck I feel like talking about. Right now I’m calling this “The Spoony Blog”, named after […]

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