Category archive: Software

Alien generators

The excellent old tabletop roleplaying game Fringeworthy had a page of tables for quickly generating the physical appearance of an... (More...)

News distortion example: AI, competition, and cooperation

An example of how news gets distorted: DeepMind, which is part of Alphabet (Google's parent company), published an interesting and... (More...)

Why I dislike Markdown

For those unfamiliar with it: Markdown is “a text-to-HTML conversion tool”—or, to put it another way, a simplified way to... (More...)

Some features I want in a Maps app

On my iPhone, I use Google Maps frequently, and Apple Maps fairly regularly. I love both apps, but I can't... (More...)

More software installation

Thought it might be fun to try to install and set up PocketMine-MP, a Minecraft server that would allow multiple... (More...)

Knee injury

Was helping transport KB and T from one place to another, so I carried three-year-old T down some steps. Safely... (More...)

Probability and Dice Wars

There's this Flash game that I play called Dice Wars. It's sort of like a stylized and abstracted version of... (More...)

See cats instead of ads, and support sites you like

Google Contributor is an experimental system that allows you to directly financially support websites you visit. If you sign up... (More...)

Thanks to Matt at Things tech support

I've been using the task-list-management app Things since 2009. It's far from perfect, but it's the only to-do-list software that... (More...)

Attacking the compiler: Xcode and "Trusting Trust"

The Intercept recently published a long but interesting article about (among other things) CIA-connected researchers' attempts to subvert Xcode, the... (More...)

How to install Unix-like software

How to install Unix-like software: A text adventure transcript. Based on a true story. Or rather, several remarkably similar true... (More...)

Ingress: Augmented reality game

I've been playing Google's augmented-reality game Ingress intermittently for a few months now. Yesterday, I reached level 7 and (coincidentally)... (More...)

Ruby on Rails: Not as easy as it sounds

I've been making small database-backed web apps for years now, after learning how by reading the PHP code generated by... (More...)

Neat sliding-number-puzzle games

There's a nifty iOS game called Threes, in which you slide numbered tiles around on a board and combine them... (More...)

When the Internet of Things fails

For the past three or four weeks, I've had a blizzard of technological failures. There was a period when my... (More...)

Coraline and the perils of DRM: A case study

In 2003, on the evening when Hugo votes were due, I bought a copy-protected PDF ebook of Coraline from the... (More...)

Debugging principle of the day

Say your code is suddenly wonky, but the only change you've made recently didn't have anything to do with the... (More...)

Too many places for notes

Sometime in the past year or two, I was thinking about anthologies I'd like to edit, and I came up... (More...)

The scariest threats are the invisible ones

Three items that feel thematically related to me: I've been concerned for a decade or so about the possibility of... (More...)

Giving MIT access to your email

NPR reported today on Immersion, a project from MIT that shows you a graphical view of your email connections to... (More...)

Made with Paper

I've been really liking an iPad sketching app called Paper. It's not a full-fledged Art Application; for example, it doesn't... (More...)

Some Letterpress strategy notes

Letterpress is an iOS word game. I played it a fair bit in spare moments for a couple months, mostly... (More...)

Packrat: Track all posts, everywhere

Had an idea on the way to work last week. There are two (minor) problems I'd like to have a... (More...)

Syncing Notes in Mountain Lion

A couple weeks ago, I wrote a plaintive blog post about iCloud and the problems I was having with it,... (More...)

Changing OS X keyboard shortcuts when app name has changed

This entry describes a somewhat techie solution to an unusual problem that most people are unlikely to have. The main... (More...)

OS X Mountain Lion unfortunatenesses

I was home sick today; didn't have enough brain to do much more than watch TV for most of the... (More...)

Converting RTF to iBooks: Use Calibre, not Stanza

I recently had occasion to convert an RTF file to EPUB format, for reading in iBooks on my iPad. When... (More...)

Tab management

I keep thinking it would be great if browsers had a better tab-and-window management system. I'm probably an atypical browser... (More...)

Getting organized

Via Susan, here's a nice (and pretty short) series of posts from someone Susan knows about (in essence) how getting... (More...)

Syncing notes from iPhone to Mac

Short version: To sync notes that you created on an iPhone to the Apple Mail application on a Mac, it... (More...)

Old apps may stop working in OS X Lion

The latest version of Mac OS X, code named Lion, is now available, for a remarkably low price, from the... (More...)

Speed up your website!

I recently learned about a nifty tool provided by Google called Page Speed Online. You enter the URL of your... (More...)

Nifty new hypertext/Interactive Fiction authoring system

I recently encountered a cool system called Undum for creating hypertext stories, semi-interactive text-based games, and Interactive Fiction. On the... (More...)

Face Movies

I've been meaning for months to post about an awesome new feature in Google's Picasa photo-management software: Given a set... (More...)

Book-catalog software for Mac + iPhone

I've been a big fan of Delicious Library ever since it first came out. It looks very pretty, and it... (More...)

Most dramatic browser speed tests ever

The Google Chrome developers have come out with a new version of the browser that's faster than ever before. To... (More...)

Kurzweil and futurism

Back in late 2006, I posted an entry here about Ray Kurzweil's 2005 prediction of the Singularity by 2029. The... (More...)

Virtual Personal Assistant

I had previously seen Apple's visionary 1987 concept video of the Knowledge Navigator (6 minutes). That was twenty-three years ago,... (More...)

Six free Mac apps

There's this company/organization called MacHeist that, every so often, provides a bundle of half a dozen commercial Mac applications for... (More...)

Today's half-baked idea: Submitbot

Another in a series of ideas I've had while half-awake: As more publishing venues turn toward online submissions, it may... (More...)

Items: Miscellaneous

Really must clear out some browser windows. Squirrels: Y'all know about Crasher Squirrel? This couple was on vacation in Banff,... (More...)

SH rejections considered spam by some mail systems

We've recently had a spate of queries from authors who use Gmail who haven't received rejections that we've sent them.... (More...)

Non-closable windows in Safari

I've been running into a weird problem in Safari 3.2.3 lately: Sometimes, a window will appear that has a grayed-out... (More...)

Task management software for Mac

I meant to write up a bigger and more comprehensive post about this, but since there's a time-sensitive aspect, I'll... (More...)

Online snowflake makers

Amtrak's snowflake maker is pretty cute--simulating cutting a snowflake out of paper. Needs Flash, I think. What appears to be... (More...)

Run some Windows apps on Mac/Linux for free (today only)

Today only, CrossOver is available for free download. For those who don't know, it's a (normally $40) piece of software... (More...)

All I want is a mailer that works

I think I must have offended the email gods sometime in the past eight or nine months. The amount of... (More...)

One email problem after another

Over the weekend, my Internet access was spotty. The connection in my room was stuttering on and off every few... (More...)

Autoresponder for

I need a way to automatically send responses to received email using in OS X Leopard. Can any of... (More...)

Three software releases of note

Been a busy week for software releases of interest to me; even more pleasing, all three of the items here... (More...)

Mail and travel don't mix

One thing I hate is when I arrive at my destination, and I sit down to do a quick email... (More...)

Email self-immolation

Made it safely to Mary Anne's. Opened up computer, ran an email check while talking with M. Eudora crashed. Hard.... (More...)

Email failure

Last night I got back to Jay & Holly's house late, but decided to do a quick email check before... (More...)

Eudora, Penelope, Odysseus

I've been using the Eudora email application for over ten years now. Sadly, development on Eudora was stopped sometime last... (More...)

Lost email

I've been using Eudora for the past ten-plus years, and it's mostly been very good to me during that... (More...)

Eudora Mac Services menu

When I upgraded to Mac Eudora 6.2.4, my Services menu stopped working. (More...)

New favorite Treo app

Google Maps is now available as a standalone app for the Treo. (More...)

Nonpolitical (personal, minor) good news

Some things that've made me happy lately: At World Fantasy Con this past weekend, half a dozen people I didn't... (More...)

Red in tooth and claw

It takes me back to the old days, it does. Microsoft is sponsoring a new distributed online game called Terrarium,... (More...)