Traumwind RSS reader
- Readmilling: Scripts for ebook reader Readmill's API
I've recently fallen in lust with Readmill, a social ebook reader for iDevices that lets me share my notes and highlights (and, most importantly, allows people to comment on them, something which Kindle's web-export doesn't provide). Readmill goes a step further, however, and provides all the data in a not-entirely-shabby API, which solidifies my hankering even further.
I've since started developing Readmilling, a set of open source scripts utilizing Readmill's API. The first release includes
book-comments.php, which tries to merge all comments left on similar highlights into a single entry. This particular view is impossible to get inside the Readmill app or on their site, but access to the API makes it relatively easy (but time-consuming).
Future scripts will likely include an exporter for all your data (open question: what formats would you like the export in?), a "Today in Readmill" that'd be a bit of a merge between the existing Explorer and your friends-only user stream, and a more advanced search engine that lets you fiddle with all the doohickeys the API provides. If you've your own ideas, you can certainly drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and they might end up as an open source script for everyone to use.
- Replacing bookshelves with Way Basics cube storage
The book I've owned the longest is probably Jim Arnosky's Secrets of a Wildlife Watcher. Its been signed and dated to 1986, which indicates this book, still in pristine condition, has been in my collection since I was an apparently non-destructive 8-year-old. The next longest is probably Interstellar Pig by William Sleator which, along with the Coville's The Monster's Ring, was checked out from the local library more times than I had counted.
Over the years, I've been steadily running out of room. I've reorganized, hemmed, hawed, and even moved hundreds of books into boxes for storage, a travesty to my viewing and collecting pleasure. This past summer, I replaced nearly all my bookshelves with a solution that's given me more room in the same footprint. Its allowed me to put nearly all my books back on display, whilst still giving me room to grow.
The "Before": Never enough room
Two bedroom walls. The first is a five shelf main wall; the second is a three shelf side-wall.
An in-progress dismantling. I didn't think to do "before" photos before it was too late.
The five shelf layout in my office, with a small selection of boxes. More were stored in other rooms.
The "After": Floor to ceiling!
I had quite some difficulty trying to get a single image of the entire layout.
This is one of the better attempts at using Photosynth. I just couldn't back up enough!
Cube storage is a go!
These are Way Basics cube storage: six individual Storage Cubes and one Storage Cube Plus create a column that rises to about an inch and a half from my ceiling. Though they don't lock together for stacking, wedging something into the remaining space provides enough stability that I've no fears about jumping four- or six-year-olds. (I'm not kidding, either - that was actually part of my stress-testing.)
The cubes are made out of recycled cardboard, which makes them quite light at 4.4 pounds each. You build a cube by sticking the pieces together with double-sided adhesive tape from 3M. You might be saying "cardboard?! adhesive?!", and you wouldn't be alone. But, besides the weight, they seem indistinguishable from the standard MDF or particleboard shelves you can buy cheaply nowadays. The colored laminate hides any indication they're made of cardboard and, when they're properly built and have rested for 24 hours, they're quite sturdy. I've moved around cubes full of heavy books without mishap (and by supporting the required backboard, of course).
More inches with the same foot
If you look at my "before" pictures, you'll see the standard department store shelves I've had for years, with lots of wasted vertical space above the book tops. This is both because you only get a certain number of shelves (one of which is hardwired near the middle for stability) and because there tends to be only one optimal way to place them. A single shelf gives you 26.75 inches (?) of horizontal space. For a three shelf unit, that's a total of 80.25?, or 133.75? for a five shelf unit.
With the Way Basics cubes, I can get four shelves in the same space as a three shelf unit. A single cube offers 11.75? of space. For the bedroom's side wall, which had two three shelf units, I had 160.5? of horizontal space. Replacing those shelves with cubes gave me 188?. Since the cubes fit into tinier nooks than the full-blown shelves, I was also able to fit a fifth column on the side, bringing my total up to 235?, nearly 5½ feet of extra horizontal space in the same footprint.
For floor to ceiling columns, something I could never do with department store bookshelves, the extra space gained is even larger. With six regular cubes and one plus-sized cube per column, I maximize the height for most of the books I own, while still allowing room for the various oversized items I have. You can see the Plus-sized cubes in the first or second rows of the floor to ceiling photos.
Other conclusions and a happy-faced Morbus
The fact that there are more "walls" to cube storage is actually a benefit in disguise: with most cheap bookshelves, your shelves will start to sag over time. It was a habit of mine to flip my shelves, like a mattress, every six months or so. With cubes, every horizontal shelf is reinforced either by the floor or the top of the cube beneath it. I haven't had them long enough to notice any sagging, but my guess is that it won't be a problem. No more mattress flipping!
Way Basics storage cubes come in a variety of colors, and I spent many an hour drafting up cute little patterns and schemes in a drawing program. After building a 5 x 7 pattern (for the bedroom's main wall), I found that you don't really notice the pattern unless you actively look for it. I switched over to single colors per column (for the office walls), and they become a bit more noticeable. If color isn't your thing, they also offer black, white, and a few wood grains.
I've looked into storage cubes before, but always found them to be too expensive (locking wooden crates that cost a ton to ship), too bookshelve-y (a single unit with nine cubicles defeats a lot of the advantages of cube storage), or too flimsy (full plastic walls that weren't sturdy enough, milk crates that didn't have enough flat surfaces, etc.). The Way Basics cubes have none of these problems, and after two months of testing and three months of completion, I'm quite thrilled with the result!
Incidentally, if you're wondering why you're not seeing any mass-market paperbacks, it's because they're all stored on DVD shelving units available from MediaShelving.com. I've three of these in my house, with a fourth slowly inching its way into necessity.
- Achievements 7.x-1.5 released
The Drupal Achievements module offers the ability to create achievements and badges similar to systems seen on Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Foursquare, Gowalla, GetGlue, and more. For a Drupal site, this could mean commenting a certain number of times, starting a forum topic, visiting the site every day of the week, or anything else that can be tracked and coded. The recently released 7.x-1.5 update adds two optional modules, a new type of achievement, and a bunch of bug fixes and tweaks.
Critical API change for "hidden" achievements
If you're using "hidden" achievements (that is, achievements which coquettishly say "I'm here!", but don't reveal their points, title, or description until unlocked), they've been renamed to "secret" in 7.x-1.5. If you don't retype any of your hidden achievements in your code, they'll become visible to your users. From a gamer's perspective, a "secret achievement" is a more frequently used phrase than a "hidden achievement", and "secret" and "invisible" (see below) work better together than "hidden" and "invisible" (which are synonymous).
Invisible achievements are now available
"Secret" achievements are those that are displayed to the end-user but don't reveal their details until unlocked. These achievements are best used to indicate there are still things to earn, but without spoiling the fun of discovering how to do so. Sometimes, though, you want entirely "invisible" achievements - those that don't show up at all in the user's achievements list until they've been earned. These are now possible in Achievements 7.x-1.5, and are great for tenure-based milestones to thank long-time users or beta testers, event-specific achievements for those who were there at the right place and the right time, or simply to provide a different type of experience when you have thousands of achievements or want to "build up" the user's achievement list vs. starting them off with everything visible and locked.
Opting out and no competition
Two new optional modules have been made available in this release. Some folks just plain ol' hate gamification, and the Opt-out module adds a new checkbox field to the user's edit screen that allows them to refrain from (and reenable, if they so desire) earning achievements. Opting out will hide the user's Achievements tab, delete all their currently earned achievements and storage data, and can also be used as a quickie "start over" mechanism (though if you've written any legacy unlocking code for them, they won't re-earn for free what you may have granted them in the past).
The second module, Pointless, removes all the explicit competitive elements of achievements. Milestones will no longer display a user's unlock rank or the number of points, and access to the leaderboards is disabled. This creates an environment where the user unlocks achievements for their own gratification, not to simply one-up another user or to get noticed on a nebulous high-score table.
Further information about smaller tweaks and bug fixes is available in the release notes.
Using Achievements on your site? I'd love to see it and start unlocking 'em myself. Lemme know!
Achievements development is supported by Examiner.com, which uses the module for its Examiner-specific Trophy Case. If you're a passionate or knowledgeable writer, consider applying to become an Examiner and see the implementation yourself, as well as earning money for your popular articles.
- #TwitFlix #TwitFlix #DrPhibesRisesAgain).
Alright folks it is about time! At 8:30 EST theGang is watching Dr. Phibes Rises Again w/ Vincent Price. Join in with us!!10 minute countdown to! Get your Netflix queued up, and find out more at http://t.co/heupOiyb.GOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOGOThis film is based on a true story....American and those Other Countries.The voice-over narrator speaks with the easygoing manner of The Amazing CriswellIt's true! The narrator said so! ?@GenXnerd: This film is based on a true story....?They just jumped right into this story didn't they!Oh God, it's Willard!His Clockwork musicians seem a bit orangeWhere in the World is Dr. Philbes?@sewdork You're missing the thing I made a joke about in #Hellraiser!Three Years Later. This movie is that long?I have a bed exactly like that!The "eternal" planets? As opposed to the "trendy" planets that only last for a few years?Oh, Mr. Narrator, now tell us a story about Buck Rogers!"Yawn... What have a missed? The Red Sox won a World Series!?!?!?! How long was I out?"And now a reading from St. Paul.Vincent Price hasn't even spoken yet and he's already hamming it up.The aromas? the aroOOMmahhs!I love the Phibes series - this is one of those "good" sequels you don't hear much about.Phibes was the original keyboardist in ELP.Quick my dear! To the PhibesMobile!So? now you're Ra's Al Ghul and Talia?I'm impressed by his ability to chew the scenery without moving his lips.JOHN GALE, not Phibes, you plebs! Vibrochord goOoO!It was Peter Cushing, wasn't it!?Sorry, Phibes. The mortgage on your mansion adjusted upward while you were asleep. It's BOA's now.Enter Phibes' quarry for this film. #sorryThe papyrus says Mummy 3 will suck.My Dear Man, this isn't a resurrection formula, it's a Tijuana Bible!When these guys play pool, it's all solid, baby? all solid.I'm *positive* Robert Quarry wore that same smoking jacket in Count Yorga. #FrugalAIP"About the time as the rings around Uranus! People still like that joke, right?" --PhibesSometimes it's like my breasts on the pool table.OH HAI, I AM NOT TOR.THRILL at the non-stop Pool action!...Is the snake shaving? Does Norelco breed reptiles?This is why you're supposed to watch out for snakes. They could be clockwork creatures.I am having Netflix issues... working on it guys.You'd think a muscley guy would just rip the snakes apart instead of coordinating hand & eye with a pool cue.That should have said "Animatronic snakes bitches!""You play solids. I'll be stripes." --The Snake.That was one of the most invasive ways to kill someone ever.Yeah, Price doesn't have any vocal lines. He only needs the power of his EYES to make the scene.Yay! The befuddled constabulary is back! Whoooo!With respect, you're a fucking dick37 cents.He brilliantly deduced that an attack by a mechanical snake was a "calculated" act.Hawking would sound so much cooler with a Phibes synthesizer.Brain Shishkebob to waltz dancing.Wait, wait, the Titanic was real?!If only M. Night could set up weird twists half as well as Phibes.Time for my Laudanum.Quarry is so very...Ooh, mine, too! ?@DisgrunScholar: Time for my Laudanum.?Not even Basil of Baker Street!Everyone speaks such proper English in this film.With his Mickey Mouse gloves, nothing can stop Phibes now!Incurable psychopath, sure, but damn if he's not an incurable romantic.@morbusiff I'd hate to see Dr. Phibes in Fantasia. @_@Just like the band at my local Chucky Cheese!"Hmmm. My mustache is glorious!"I need a traveling clockwork bandI suddenly thirst for "Muller's Gin" Gin.Enjoy your two minutes of Peter CushingPeter Cushing!!! Whoooo! #FangirlingNow if you'll excuse me, Alderaan is waiting.The Doctor!Oh, and a gunshot.2 minutes of Peter Cushing is better than no minutes of Peter Cushing. ?@TheWickerBill: Enjoy your two minutes of Peter CushingAnd to "The Thief and the Cobbler" I'm sure it will be grand.I must say those are some sweet gloves!I like to feed the back of my neck too@word_countess You have an excellent point, my dearPhibes is going to have some 'splaining to do to Corpse Bride about Vulnavia.Behold, SKELETONS!!!Count the toes! It's the LOST statue!This movie is halfway between CLeopatra and Manos.Before Shredder, Phibes was master of the Foot Clan. #YouCanUseItMichaelBayIt's not commonly known that Ancient Egyptians invented Art Deco.This might be what a live action BioShock looks like."Yes, none of us are as good as Price, are we?"Is that man going to a formal dance? Why is he wearing a flower?Terry-Thomas!!! In the AIP tradition of reusing actors and smoking jackets...High Phibes!! Low Phibes... ah to slow!Spoiler alert: Phibes killed Terry-Thomas in the first movie. He got better.SR. PHIBES RISES AGAIN! THRILL AT THE SUPERNATURAL AWE!She is a pretty good painter but can she paint a ceiling?I'm picking up good Phibrations.So the Clockwork Band is on tour, huh?@DisgrunScholar You can see them at a Chucky Cheese in your local area.!"That's where my hat shop is."This movie just turned khaki!You know, this movie is kinda silly. #CaptainObvious@GenXnerd @disgrunscholar Or a Spencer's Gifts! (Do they still have those?)@DisgrunScholar Yeah, but this is the same era where Vincent made "Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine."This bird fight is 1000% better than any of Birdemics!@word_countess @disgrunscholar I haven't been to a Mall in at least 10 years.OH MY GOD, A NOSE!It was the hawk, the hawk!, that caused the great Chicago fire!Big horn with a lil' gal!Someone needs to tell that bird that looking right into the camera is soOO film school year one.It's...a....TUBA!Dr. Phibes Vulnavia cosplay: GO!Oh, generic bird cry takes me right back to many a tale of the Herculoids.@morbusiff At least they didn't go with CGI birds.Missing 12 minutes at the start of this has really screwed my perception of this film up.@mkglert "When he came to me, that night, the tuba stood in the corner, its brassiness a glint in our eyes."@word_countess Or those raptor bird things from the Star Trek: The Animated Series episodes.I think we found this year's Halloween costume! I'll be Phibes. You be Vulnavia. ?@mkglert: Dr. Phibes Vulnavia cosplay: GO!?So Phibes is...The Keymaster?@word_countess @mkglert Can I be the Tuba?#Halloween #cosplayIntellectual Freedom? Well, thank God we're all idiots!Cigars, Cigarettes, Ears, Noses.... Get your Roman Noses!@morbusiff @word_countess Sure! Now we need two enormous feet.I'm trying to live forever, how can human life mean nothing to me? Mine does! Yours? eh, not so much.The Rolls Royce of coffinsBider Beck and Bilbo Baggins and Billy Batson! All of them!Clockwork Wizards & enough Vulnavian costume changes to justify a suitcase co.? that's what goes on thereVulnavia, Victoria, Vesuvia, Valeria...@mkglert Venerial?MMMmm, shadow porn. That really needs to be a marketable sub genre.@mkglert Valium?Millenniums? What? Pull over, movie. #GrammarPolice@morbusiff I have a HD full of it!Ah, it's the "Kiss the Girl" scene of B-Movies.When I see thecrew making fun of DR. PHIBES RISES AGAIN, I get a sad. That movie makes fun of itself, you know. #istillloveitI bet we could find some shadow porn actors here on Twitter!! Anyone? Shadow porn?@GenXnerd Remind me to abuse your Dropbox bandwidth again after the movie.Iron Shiek!Price is Pleased!@mkglert Vulnavia: strongly invokes female genitals, yet least sexy name ever. #VulnaviaGalore"Could you scream a bit louder? You're totally not in synch with the violin!""Maybe they can sell us Droids!"So, is Price...Prof. X or something?"3 dunes east. Now a dune to the right. Now back up about a quarter dune."Phibes is wearing a Hypercolor robe.Behold, Nazgul!Price!"This isn't Hyde Park." Ooh, buuuuuurn!"This isn't Hyde Park. ...It's Tahrir Square, so yeah, go ahead."Phibes on a giant swamp boat, looking for the elixir of life, whilst being chased by Barbeau. #MakeItHappenVulnavia + the Machine.Hammy Murders for Hammy Actor!I love how Phibes' contraptions appear out of thin airAwww yeah, the tuba's back.Wait, so he only killed one of them?Even when Robert Quarry's not playing a vampire, he wears enough pancake to pass for one.Vincent Price is faster than The Flash.This clockwork band sure does get around!Seriously, who hears bagpipes and goes toward them?The Clockwork Band! Live at Edinburgh!He has nothing to say sir!AHHH! I'M BEING BLINDED BY COCO POWDER!Uh-oh, boss fight."It's my key! You can't have it! Nah-nah-ne-poopy!"@word_countess I'd run away from bagpipes even if it was on the radio.Phibes seems not to know the pharoahs are actually dead.I...will...pause...more...often...than...William...Shatner...and...emphasize...every...word!I'm not sure who I'm supposed to be rooting for, but Team Phibes all the way.This is the hammiest episode of "Legends of the Hidden Temple" I've ever seen.@Kinetograph It must have been a pain in the butt to do a second take. Not that I expect they did very many...Do we get to hear Biederbeck play cornet?There's no place like home.Now on K-Tel Records: Vincent Price sings the hits of Judy Garland!Too bad Vinny never did a Golden Throats LP.I wanna know who played the Tuba!@word_countess Terry-Thomas of course.If you liked that, kids, the first one IS better, but not on streaming. Recommended!@GenXnerdyou should do Bride of the Monster soon@word_countess I'd recommend the first one too.