Auckland to Los Angeles

Well, I can safely say getting to Dallas, Texas was something of an ordeal. Not quite as harrowing as getting the citizenship, Visa and passport in the first place but certainly bad enough.

This story is a little long, so I have broken it up into the three legs (Auckland to Los Angales, Los Angeles to Denver and finally Denver to Dallas). Sit back, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy. I will add more instalments later in the week.

Sarah and I left for the airport early, at around about 1pm. My flight was scheduled for 5:55pm, so the recommended 3 hour check-in time was at 2:55pm. I sauntered up to the desk at about 1:30pm and asked to check in for my first and longest flight: QF25, Auckland to Los Angeles.

“I’m sorry sir, but you are too early” came the reply “please come back later”.

Too early? How is it I can possibly be too early? We are all told to check in at least 3 hours before departure, which is 2:55pm. The reason we are given is so as to allow for plenty of time for customs to cavity search us on the way through.
Continue reading Auckland to Los Angeles


Ok, most of you are fully aware that I am a geek. As such, I like geeky toys and whatnot. That said, I haven’t had much reason to buy anything suitably geeky in, well, forever. The technology has just never been cool enough in my opinion. A pocket PC I can also use as a mobile phone? Yawn, snore.

For years I have had this romantic notion of a personal area network (PAN) in my head. The PAN is the backbone of your own personal (some say wearable) computer which is always at hand (some say pervasive or ubiquitous). I originally thought the PAN would piggy-back on the body’s own electromagnetic field but when Bluetooth came out I decided it would have to do for now.

Continue reading PAN


Disclaimer: Some of my friends, colleagues and family may be weirded out by this post but really, guys, it’s just sex.

A few years ago I came up with an idea that I thought could make millions: what if we built computer peripherals that used haptics (force feedback, touch-sentitivity, sensation etc) to provide sexual stimulus?

Imagine, people could hook themselves up and engage in perfectly safe sex. Imagine the enhancements to cyber sex, imagine “interactive” porn. Imagine how much money there is to be made and how it could further research in to real improvements in technology? Let’s face it, sex sells, and haptics is an exciting research area that deserves mor funding.

Before you call me a rotten pervert, I should point out that this idea is about 20 years old and is known as teledildonics. Who originally coined the term? Oh, just the guy who came up with the term “hypertext” and “hypermedia”, that’s all.

dDot of Slashdong (that’s right, slashdong) currently has a paper accepted at the prestigious CHI (Computer Human Interaction) conference this year, the paper is to do with this very topic. *waves to qDot*

So, the idea is alive and well. Sadly, the technology is, to be frank, in the dark ages. Here are a few links to examples (warning, not safe for work):
Full stroke – who is going to attach that to their privates?
Priceless – you want me to put my cordless drill where?
Venus – An air compressor? Are you crazy?

Will a future brain-to-brain iterface as depicted in the movie Demolition Man eventually supplant the need for actual sex altogether? I hope not.

Meta models

As a programmer, I constantly hear the siren’s cry of meta modelling. Programming is all about building abstractions to represent reality. By inference, being able to abstract these abstractions results in an “application generator” (or meta application) which can be used for any purpose. Some may call this the holy grail of programming.

At least that’s the theory.
Continue reading Meta models