May 10th, 2008


What a friend we have in cheeses

I know a few friends can work wonders with bread machines, but has anyone set about making authentic baguettes at home? If so, how difficult is it? What secrets (if any) are there in attaining that vanishingly light interior, and that fantastic crunch outside? (Yakitate Japan suggested sprinkling the dough with a little water prior to baking)

w00t! I have DSL again. ^_^ Fantastic as the cellular modem is, it's nice to have 100GB/mo inbound, and full control over port forwarding - so no more random AIM disconnections, or improperly cached message pages on FurAffinity, and full-speed torrents. Yays!

Tuesday's dinner: a simple affair. ^_^ Some fresh ramen, baby corn, mangetout, and Swedish meatballs, plus ketjap manis and Thai sweet chili sauce. =:9

I must recommend Kaiba as a highly creative anime, dropping us straight into an odd world. Try the first episode - if the first few minutes don't grab you, proceed with the rest of your life; but you might like to try this. (For anyone interested in anime generally, the creator was also behind Mind Game and Kemonozume)

Wednesday: I was feeling fairly pooped, so I went with something effortless - a can of three bean soup (plus some smoked paprika and basil), and three chopped up beef sausages of quite surprising quality.

The Sontaran Stratagem: quite promising, even if nothing radically innovative. Its conclusion, however, failed to build on its beginnings, I felt - Rattigan didn't ring true, Ross was sadly wasted, and the ultimate Big Bad Plan didn't seem to have much point, versus simply occupying any number of uninhabited worlds. I'm not seeking scientific accuracy, but still, the conclusion would've been much more convincing had there been some effect beyond a bit of a flambé aerial show (which also left clouds in its wake). Rather disappointing, overall, though still a pleasant enough way to spend a little time.

Yay! Four new episodes of Dogstar! It went on hiatus in December, and recently started airing again, though it appears it actually completed its BBC Two run in December 2007. Has anyone else been watching said show?

35 language courses for free, as podcasts from the iTunes Store.

Toil in the salt mine's going well - we managed to get a relatively exotic chip talking politely to us, and overcame a still-mysterious issue where the receiving code worked perfectly happily on the Frankensteinian creation, but not the actual device, despite both being essentially identical. (For some reason, we wound up having an extra byte kicking around from the previous SPI transfer, which was waiting for us on the main data transfer. So our expected contents wound up being shifted up by one byte, pushing our final byte off the end. Flushing the SPI with an extra register read did the trick) For my next trick, a simplified scheduler - really more of a sequencer, as the priorities are hard-coded - to ensure the radio transmission and reception requests don't step on each others' toes, and similarly with the devices that talk over SPI and I2C, sharing the same physical bus. That'll all be cycling through on something like a 100µs timer, which is an eternity in microprocessor time. =:)

Oooh.. yes, Friday's creation was a particular success. One cheap boneless chicken breast (the kind pumped full of water and other goodies), set along its way to sautée quietly with a bit of olive oil and a couple teaspoons of lemongrass paste, while a few balls of basil pappardelle (pasta ribbons about 3/4" thick) boiled away. The sauce, meanwhile, was most of the remaining portobello & madeira, with three slices of lean bacon torn up, and some sliced up marinated artichoke hearts. Just before the pasta was ready, I added the remaining four asparagus spears. So the final presentation: chicken with a portobello, bacon, artichoke, and madeira sauce, on a bed of pappardelle, with asparagus. =:9

Sheer brilliance. ^_^ The Get Out Clause, a Mancunian band, decided to make a video for one of their songs by playing for surveillance cameras and then demanding the footage under the Data Protection Act.

.. and Saturday, just a pepperoni & anchovy pizza, with some rocket, watercress, and Raf tomatoes as a side salad, accompanied by quite a delightful Bordeaux, Château La Commanderie Saint-Estèphe Cru Bourgeois 2004.

What a wondrous analogy made tangible as a fully realised sculpture/art project.. "It's a clock, turned off, not ticking, showing no progress, encased in glass. When you're ready to make the leap, to commit, to make something happen, you break the glass. The sculpture is ruined. All you have is shards of broken glass. And a working clock. It's alive and it's changing and moving forward."
  • Current Music
    Mexican Institute of Sound - Killer Kumbia