Saturday, August 26, 2006

Videos: XGL + Compiz


Watching this videos I feel I'm really missing something and finally need to upgrade my Matrox G200 graphic card...

For all of you who like eye candy, check this out!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Hacking jExam

Are you bored of continuously going to jExam's site, type your password plus your pin once again just to confirm that the results of your exams are still not there?

This simple (and primitive...) PERL script creates a RSS-file containing all your notes. Just add it to your news ticker program and forget about logging into jExam until October.

Set the variable "domain" to "52005" if you use the domain of the University instead of the faculty's one.


use WWW::Mechanize;
use HTML::TokeParser;

my $login = 'your_login';
my $password = 'your_password';
my $domain = '52004';
my $pin = 'your_pin';

my $jexam = "";

my $mech = WWW::Mechanize->new();

$mech->field("loginName", $login);
$mech->field("password", $password);
$mech->field("domain", $domain);
$mech->field("pin", $pin);

my $stream = HTML::TokeParser->new(\$mech->{content});

my ($tag, $subject, $note, $points, $rss);

$rss = "<rdf:rdf>\n";
$rss .= "<channel>\n";
$rss .= "<title>jExam: Ergebnisse</title>\n";
$rss .= "</channel>\n";

$tag = $stream->get_tag("table");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("table");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("table");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("table");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("table");

while ($tag = $stream->get_tag("table")) {

$tag = $stream->get_tag("span");
$subject = $stream->get_trimmed_text("/span") ."\n";

if ($subject =~ m/ist online/) {

$tag = $stream->get_tag("table");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("tr");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("tr");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("td");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("td");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("td");

$note = $stream->get_trimmed_text("/td") ."\n";

$tag = $stream->get_tag("tr");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("td");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("td");
$tag = $stream->get_tag("td");

$points = $stream->get_trimmed_text("/td") ."\n";

$rss .= "<item><title>$subject [[$note]]</title></item>\n";


$rss .= "</rdf:rdf>\n";

print $rss;

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Going beyond Mentos

I'm sure I am not the only one seeing kids (and some "big" kids...) everywhere playing with Mentos and a big bottle of diet cola, some of them hacking the trick to its limit.

Mentos + Diet Cola propelled Rocket

Now, if you consider that funny, check this out.

CO2 propelled Bucket

What you need is:
  • Some dry ice.
  • Some empty 1/2L bottles
  • One Bucket

Fill 1/3 of the bottle with water.
Put some dry ice in it, close it tightly and leave it on the floor.
Cover the bottle with the bucket.
Run, and if it doesn't explode do not pick it up!

Now, that is fun!

How does it work?

As opposed to frozen water (wet ice), dry ice is frozen carbon dioxide which at temperatures above -78°C starts to change its state. If the pressure is under 5.1 atmospheres it doesn't melt but sublimates directly into gas, producing enough pressure to make the bottle blow.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Analyzing the Slashdot Effect

A couple of days ago I did a little experiment with the previous (and first!) entry of this blog with the objective of collecting some statistical information about people like me, who are avid readers of nerdly news, and in particular of trying to measure the famous slashdot effect and compare it with its analogous from other sites. The blog entry made its way to the front page of Slashdot, Digg and their spanish clones: Barrapunto and Meneame, generating around 140,000 combined visits that were logged using Google Analytics. This time I want to share the results with you.


The article was on Slashdot's front page for about 20.5 hours (from August 13th, 2:30PM until August 14th, 11:00AM). As you can see below, most of the visits took place on monday morning. After leaving the front page of Slashdot and Digg the daily visits were reduced from 81,300 to 17,000 and surely will continue dropping as fast as they grew.

Sunday Monday
Visits: 42,813 81,316
Visits/hour: 4,505 7,390
Visits/minute: 75 123


A first visit to the page produce a transfer of arround 720kB, with that and the number of new visitors can we figure out how much data (approximately) was transferred during that time.

Sunday: 28.7GB
Monday: 54,6GB
Total: 83.3GB

Where do all those geeks come from?

People came from all over the world, in fact from 157 different countries. Most stories in Slashdot/Digg reach every corner of the world!

North America: 77,634 visits
Europe: 41,159 visits
Oceania: 6,443 visits
Asia: 5,423 visits
Hispanic America: 5,350 visits
Africa: 724 visits
USA: 67,752 visits
Canada: 9,882 visits
UK: 9,336 visits
Spain: 7,577 visits
Australia: 5,209 visits
Germany: 3,770 visits
Netherlands: 2,413 visits
Sweden: 2,014 visits
Brazil: 2,008 visits


English: 116,853 visits
Spanish: 7,402 visits
German: 1,975 visits
French: 1,763 visits
Japanese: 1,758 visits
Dutch: 1,465 visits
Portuguese: 1,351 visits

The Referrers

I didn't imagine such big difference between the traffic from Slashdot and from Digg.

Slashdot: 75,753 visits
Digg: 18,087 visits
Barrapunto: 3,767 visits
Metafilter: 3,271 visits 1,627 visits
Slo-Tech: 1,589 visits 1,582 visits
Meneame: 1,538 visits

Firefox & the geeks!

Almost 2/3 of the people were using the Firefox browser, who said Internet Explorer is the most popular browser? Well, not among us :)

Firefox: 63%
Internet Explorer: 20%


Unfortunately Linux is still not so popular as Firefox, even among the geeks.

Windows: 72%
Macintosh: 14%
Linux: 13%

Combo: OS - Browser

Screen Resolution

Resolution: 1280x1024 and 1024x768
Color Depth 32 bit


Flash: 96,6%
Java: 96%

Connection Speed

Dialup: 9%

Do geeks click on Ads?

Finally for all of you wondering what you can get (besides a burning web-server) from being slashdotted, here are the numbers. You are not going to become rich, but perhaps you have more luck than this guy.

Page Impressions: 154,243
Clicks: 454
Dollars: $134

Saturday, August 12, 2006

The Evolution of Desktops

1984 - 1986

Macintosh System 1January 1984: Macintosh System 1

Macintosh System 2April 1985: Macintosh System 2

Microsoft Windows 1.0November 1985: Microsoft Windows 1.0

Microsoft Windows 1.0November 1985: Microsoft Windows 1.0

Macintosh System 3January 1986: Macintosh System 3

1987 - 1989

Macintosh System 4March 1987: Macintosh System 4

Macintosh System 51987: Macintosh System 5

Microsoft Windows 2.0December 1987: Microsoft Windows 2.0

Microsoft Windows 2.0December 1987: Microsoft Windows 2.0

Macintosh System 6April 1988: Macintosh System 6

1990 - 1994

Microsoft Windows 3.0May 1990: Microsoft Windows 3.0

Macintosh System 7May 1991: Macintosh System 7

Microsoft Windows 3.1August 1992: Microsoft Windows 3.1

Macintosh System 7.1August 1992: Macintosh System 7.1

1995 - 1997

Macintosh System 7.5March 1995: Macintosh System 7.5

Microsoft Windows 95August 1995: Microsoft Windows 95

Mac OS 8July 1997: Mac OS 8

1998 - 1999

Microsoft Windows 98June 1998: Microsoft Windows 98

KDE 1.0July 1998: KDE 1.0

Macintosh System 9October 1999: Macintosh System 9

2000 - 2001

KDE 2.0October 2000: KDE 2.0

Mac OS X 10.1September 2001: Mac OS X 10.1

Microsoft Windows XPOctober 2001: Microsoft Windows XP

2002 - 2006/7

KDE 3.5November 2005: KDE 3.5

Mac OS X 10.5Mac OS X 10.5

Microsoft Windows VistaMicrosoft Windows Vista