Thursday, October 13, 2011

Madame Bovary - Really?

My faith in women was soundly shattered last night.

I recently read Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary, and it was one of the worst reads ever. It was actually quite expertly written, but I seriously couldn't stand the main character. About every other page I was begging for someone to slap her, that is how vapid, silly, and just a stupid girl I found her to be. Not just now and then, no, All The Time.

So I was thinking: "Well, this Gustave Flaubert obviously has to be some kind of character who either hates women with a fiery passion or some kind of recluse who hasn't met a proper woman in his entire life."
That's basically how I justified the horribleness (yes it's a word) of the main character (Madame Bovary, BTW, but I guess that's obvious)

Now, last night, Eric Larden was couch surfing at my place. Was great fun, we jammed a bit together (He is a much better guitarist then me, but we still managed some fun tunes) and we had plenty to talk about.

However, at one point he notices Madame Bovary lying around my apartment somewhere and he mentions that a female friend of him had recommended it to him. I mention that I absolutely hated it and why. (How vapid and silly the main character is.) At this point he starts laughing.

Why? The reason his friend had recommended the book was, according to her, it was surprising that even though written by a male author, the depiction of the woman was spot on.

Please god no. *sadface*

Friday, April 29, 2011

Rollcall - Name the webapp

Hey all!

So I've been at hackcamp since wednesday and we presented our hacks yesterday. Now I did work with my colleagues on hacking the bike trainer into a game controller, but I got quickly distracted by my own little idea...

The Bike Controller - Photo by Jessica Meats

The challenge
Now back to my own little project. I've personally dabbled in writing songs over the past, sometimes more successful than other times and always fun. However, I was on twitter the other day when I realized that every second, thousands of people are actually writing lines of text. And I was wondering, if you combine those intelligently, you could basically generate song lyrics about anything!

So that became my personal hack for over the weekend, and the preliminary app should be online here:

I realize that right now it only works rarely (working on that) and the rhyming/matching/story algorithms are not exactly intelligent yet, but it does generate fun songs now and then and I will get around to fixing all these problems.

The bigger problem I have right now though, is the name. I originally wanted to call it "songbird", but that apparently is some kind of mp3 player. Than I tried several others, but they all didn't fit or were very taken. Even "Merula" was taken (Which I thought of since the blackbird is the most common and apparently in The Netherlands the most popular songbirds), so that's how I ended up with Tweetus Merula. Not exactly catchy.

So there's my challenge! The one who will help me find the perfect name for my lyrics-from-twitter-generating-webapp will get an awesome prize  from me! Thanks!

Twittergenerated #geektrip Anthem

As a first result of my webapp, this song was generated by loading "geektrip" into it:

The Geektrip Anthem
Geeks certainly know how to barbecue
They're interested in what you're up to
4 more to go
yes you do!

day 1 photos of tomscott cbetta mseckington and others
Anyone on the geektrip want to talk to Reuters
This is like the methadone getting delievered
The international HackCamp has started
Netherlands here we come!
This will be awesome!

Geeks certainly know how to barbecue
They're interested in what you're up to
4 more to go
yes you do!

At geektrip playing with MongoDB and Scala futures
Still need to see how fast it charges

Geeks certainly know how to barbecue
They're interested in what you're up to
4 more to go
yes you do!

Geeks certainly know how to barbecue
They're interested in what you're up to
4 more to go
yes you do!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The world is AWESOME!

It is! For Real! Absoluteshizzly! Yay yay yay Marina and the Diamonds rocks and sunshine and happy and life and water and yay! God I'm crazy this morning and I'm crazy ass loving it! If someone secretly slipped me drugs last night... Thanks!

Also, if any of my neighbours are reading this, I don't apologize for the loud singing and the jumping around for the last hour... It's a gorgeous day and you should be awake! But I hope I haven't made your day any less awesome (No matter how awesome your last night was). Today is party day!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


My life is usually a long series of little projects I'm currently working on. Some have a clear target, some last forever, most never get past the "Whoa, that would be awesome!" phase.

This is of course besides (and sometimes in harmony with) the stuff I do to work and live.

So, just to clear my head a little, here's a little list of stuff I'm currently working on (Roughly from highest to lowest priority):

  • Run the Marathon of Rotterdam - Fairly on schedule with my training schedule
  • Get better at programming - Reading books, focusing on TDD, SCJD @ work
  • Lose weight - Not going so well, even though I do feel like I'm losing fat with all the running
  • Get my driver's licence -  Got theory, exam is planned for the 9th of March
  • Write more music - Not going nearly is good as I want.
  • Make more music - Practice for my bands, practice piano, flute etc. etc.
  • Write more - This is a bit of a result of that, also stuff at work.
  • Watch the top 250 movies - Not in a rush, seen a few.
  • Get better at SCII - Not going so well, still, lots of fun.
If I take a look at this list then I have admit that it's actually not really a list of projects. It's more like a list of good intentions. And as we all know, good intentions serve primarily as awesome pavement in certain coolly challenged mythological places. Taking another look I realise the only things significantly moving forward are those with a clear goal (i.e. the marathon and driver's licence). Ergo, to get other stuff moving forward I need more specific projects. Less things to do at the same time would probably also help, but that rarely happens with me.

OK, so for Write more music: I'm going to jump into FAWM. I don't believe I'll have the time to still write 14 songs (though that will of course be a secondary goal) but I do want to write at least 10 more songs during February.

And for write more... Hmm, I've been wanting to delve deeper into classical music for quite some time now, so I was considering doing a bunch of reviews of interesting classical pieces, but I now realise that would probably strain my time even further, while I might as well write about the FAWM thing. OK, so, at least 10 more songs in february and the results will be documented here.

Yay, clear goal!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Nike+ and the joys of google

Well, yesterday I finally got myself to initialize my Nike+ bracelet thingie and set up a brand spanking new profile at . (I wanted to use it to prepare for the Bruggenloop coming sunday)

However for some weird archaic odd reason, they appear to; A. require a profile picture before your profile can be shown and 2; Require this picture to be smaller than 200 Kb ... Weirdness, what is this, the nineties?

Anyway, so I remembered I always used to use this awesome program for picture viewing which also had great conversion (and primarily batch conversion) capabilities, but I couldn't remember the name.

So I googled: awesome program for picture viewing and batch conversion
And tadaaa! The third result: IrfanView! Excellent!

I love the internet :-).

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Petitie voor gehandicaptenzorg

Deze keer een post in het Nederlands, omdat het gaat over het zoveelste falen van het huidige Nederlandse kabinet.

Het gaat om de volgende petitie:

Mijn broertje woont in een prachtig droomhuis ( waar 10 gehandicapte kinderen zorg op maat krijgen, waar mensen elkaar kennen en waar de kinderen altijd in de buurt zijn van mensen die oprecht van ze houden en ze de tijd kunnen geven die ze verdienen. Dit is allemaal mogelijk door een eindeloze hoeveelheid inzet van ouders, goede doelen en andere belangelozen in combinatie met de PGB regeling, die opgezet was om exact dit soort initiatieven te stimuleren.

Door de (mijns inziens harteloze) plannen van het huidige kabinet zal bij ongewijzigd beleid het Droomhuis in Wageningen er in 3 jaar tijd ruim 30% in budget op achteruit gaan. Dat zou betekenen dat er drie tot vijf verzorgers ontslagen moeten worden waardoor alle tijd en ruimte die er nu is voor bijvoorbeeld integratie in de samenleving en gewoon spelen verloren zou gaan.

Nu is het doel van deze petitie het kabinet op andere gedachten te brengen, zodat ze niet gaan bezuinigen op de PGB's, waaruit o.a. de zorg voor onze kinderen in wooninitiatieven betaald moet worden.

Morgen staat het debat gepland met de kamer, al zijn er nu signalen dat het wellicht een week wordt uitgesteld. Dat zou al mooi zijn, maar alle kleine beetjes helpen.

En is het niet bekend dat je het niveau van een beschaving kan meten aan hoe zij voor hun zwakste zorg? Ik hoop van harte dat wij ons beschavingsniveau op zo'n peil kunnen houden dat de honderden prachtige wooninitiatieven voor gehandicapten in Nederland de huidige kwaliteit kunnen behouden.

Bedankt! (Ook namens mijn broertje)