Friday, January 27, 2006

Random(ish) Curios and Factoids

  • You may not be able to tell from the photo, but you're looking at the world's smallest fish. The article says they live in peat bogs in SE Asia, but you have to wonder if they might be all over the place, and people have just been ignoring them up to now. They wouldn't be hard to overlook, certainly.
  • My current source of occupational stress is a unit test suite that had fallen by the wayside several years back. It hasn't been maintained or updated for a long time now, and it's out of sync with the current codebase. Oh, and many of the tests either weren't passing at the time the suite stopped being maintained, or they didn't actually do anything, or they were failing silently without reporting anything back to the test framework. So when a test fails, you don't immediately know whether the test's broken, or the code it's testing is broken. And did I mention these are C++ tests, using a homegrown test framework, which has itself proven to be less than 100% reliable. No JUnit for us, nosirreee.... I really miss working in Java right about now...
  • On the bright side, here are two more sites with cute pictures of cats and kittens: RateMyKitten and KittenWar. Enjoy!
  • Elsewhere in the universe, it turns out there's a nifty way to recycle old worn-out spacesuits, which is to fill them with experiments and chuck 'em out the nearest airlock. Actually the idea of empty spacesuits floating around in orbit is a little creepy, now that I think about it. Hmm.
  • Came across a blog with a few posts touching on superreal numbers. Turns out the reason there's not a lot of info on the topic out there is that it's a relatively new subject. The definitive book was only published in 1996. I'll do another math-related post in the near future, I expect, but not just yet. I'm still doing some additional reading, with the idea that any additional speculation on my part will be at least marginally better informed.
  • You'll probably think this sounds gross, but here's a recipe for a Tuna & Tater Tot Pie. I guess it all depends on how you feel about tater tots. If you ask me, they're the Northwest's single greatest contribution to fine cuisine, and global culture, for that matter. I mean it, and not in a PBR-swilling ironic hipster way, either. Forget all that business about salmon, blackberries, hazelnuts, whatever. It's not like any of them were actually invented here.

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