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Latest Work

Facebook Juggler An example of HTML5 gaming on Facebook - just to prove a point, really! It connects with the FB API to post scores to the players wall. It could also be extended to support challenge games with friends, and other such social features, using the Graph API.
Identikey Identikey lets you store all your usernames and passwords on a USB pen drive in a secure fashion. It does this by encrypting the passwords in a special file that you can only uncover with a second 'master password'. This master password is never saved, transmitted, or stored anywhere except in your head, so even if the drive gets lost or stolen nothing can happen to the data.
Lego Punk First there was cyberpunk. Then steampunk. And now LEGO Punk! This blog will collect all the cool, funky, odd and weird things that have been made from LEGO. From portraits and sculptures, to keyrings, robots and office furniture. If it's made from (or is about) LEGO, and makes me smile and nod my head with approval, then it is accepted.

Project List

This cover details the major (and minor) projects of the Blue Dust think tank and consortium.
Structural Constructs
Lego Menger Sponge This is a Menger Sponge, built from Lego. If you want a larger one of these for your University mathematics department, I am available for commisions!
Tori Amos in Lego This is a portrait of Tori Amos, built form Lego! Like most things, I wondered if it could be done. And, more importantly, if I was capable of doing it. I enjoy experimenting with different ideas (thus the portrait) and then boasting about it (thus the web page!). It's pop-art in a geeky, post-modern, ironic, avant-garde, kind of way :)
The World's Most Expensive Chess Set I made a chess set using only money. Notes for the board, coins for the pieces. Total cost: £2,402.68.
SMT Rock Band Hack This is a cut-down version of the main SMT program that has special code which allows you to use the drums and guitars from the 'Rock Band' computer game to trigger MIDI instruments and WAV samples. The unique feature of this app is that all instruments can be used at the same time!
The Rule Organ By taping thirteen rulers to a nearby desk, each with a different amount of overhang, we have a rudimentary musical instrument. All based on the most fundamental schoolboy principle, of twanging rulers against the desk.
LEGO Sunglasses A pair of sunglasses, with yellow tint, built from the LEGO found in the 1980's space sets.
LEGO Chess Set A not-too simple chess set, with each piece needing exact duplicates in both red and black and effectively representing the motives and characterization of the piece involved. Plus, I had to do it without buying any new bricks.
LEGO Maxifig An example in minimalism in construction.
The CD Clock Here are the instructions on how to build a simple clock, from an old audio CD, or CD-ROM.
Recursive Keyring The key-ring is a masterpiece of modular design! Any item with a hole can be threading onto a ring. Whereupon this ring can be threaded into another, and so on. My key-ring follows this to extreme, and weight just under 250g!
Web Design
Pizza-per-Penny Calculator Have you ever wondered if you'd get more pizza when buying a 15" 'no crust' versus a 12" buy-one-get-one-free deal?
If so, this is the web page for you. Adopting the famous .r2 equation for determining the area of a circle, this web page calculates how much each cm2 of pizza will cost you, and highlights the best value.
Small Sites The starting place for this page was the game, Lights Out, which was also the basis for my Amiga game FlipGrid. It was an experiment to see how small I could get a web page. The final version was 1.2K.
During development, I read about the Sylloge competition to design a site in 5K. I expanded the entry to feature other mathematical puzzles and curiosities. Each was presented in its' own frame, divided according to the golden ratio, appropriately enough.
WARP WARP is a system that utilises WebFace to allow many different applets to run on a single page, and maintain the state between them. It is part of the Minerva system.
Retro Hacking World An e-zine for hackers and phreakers, designed as an A4 newsletter. You must turn your monitor sidewides to view correctly! Why? Because Xerox Parc demonstrated WYSIWYG using monitors orientated to A4. We attempted to revitalise the idea with this site.
List of my funny jokes A joke page, whose idea has been copied ad infinitum.
Javascript Keyboard This is an on-screen keyboard developed with JavaScript. It was originally intended to increase the input capabilities of tablet PCs and touch screens.
ComCo ComCo is a bookmarklet that scans the current URL and replaces the .com part of the address with .co.uk. Or vice-versa. I wrote it because I was continually checking the sales rank of my book under both Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk.
Software
My Freecode page I write many open source packages not listed here, many are available on Freecode (formally called Freshmeat.)
Facebook Juggler An example of HTML5 gaming on Facebook - just to prove a point, really! It connects with the FB API to post scores to the players wall. It could also be extended to support challenge games with friends, and other such social features, using the Graph API.
SGX Engine SGX is the 3D graphics engine from Steven Goodwin. It is based around of series of null drivers and loosely-coupled modules to facilitate an infinitely upgradable engine. It is primarily suited to games and digital TV backdrops, and runs under Windows and Linux, using OpenGL.
Identikey Identikey lets you store all your usernames and passwords on a USB pen drive in a secure fashion. It does this by encrypting the passwords in a special file that you can only uncover with a second 'master password'. This master password is never saved, transmitted, or stored anywhere except in your head, so even if the drive gets lost or stolen nothing can happen to the data.
QuBit QuBit is a library to support Quantum Superpositions in C++. This allows each CQuBit variable to hold a number of different values at the same time. Normal mathematical operations can be performed on a QuBit, but they affect every value in the QuBit, at the same time. Binary Operations on two QuBits cause a result based on every possible outcome.
EMF - Emulator Framework EMF is a description language of computer hardware, plus the tools necessary to convert it into code. By describing a processor, for example, in a structured fashion means that the EMF software can automatically generate an emulator for that processor in any given programming language. Furthermore, it can use the same description to generate an assembler, disassembler, memory monitor, and other assorted tools.
Movies In One A way of watching every scene in a 2 hour movie within 10 seconds. This is a quirky script which takes a movie file, and renders the whole thing into a single animated gif where each frame comprises a montage of 30 frames from the movie.
MIDI Library A wonderfully compact, and complete, library to handle MIDI files. Contains all the constants necessary to understand the protocol as well.
BigFraction for Java BigFraction holds arbitrary precision fractional numbers held in numerator and denominator. This ensures no precision is lost during calculations. Both halves of the equation are stored using the Java BigInteger library, so fractions can be as large as necessary.
BitStream for Java BitStream is a Java library to read streamed data on a bit-by-bit level. This low-level facility is necessary for those wanting to parse and processing MPG streams, for example.
ASCII Pacman The world famous implementation, of the world famous game, written for the world famous interface. ASCII text. Download the ASCII Pacman source, now at 0.9.2.
Secure Source An tricky little piece of code that will destroy itself!
Steev's HTML Parser A full HTML parser written in C++ which builds every entity and element into an instance of its appropriate class. Pure OO class!
Fixed point library A useful library, written in C, to handle fixed point precision mathematics. This was featured in Linux Magazine.
Spoon An esoteric language that only requires two tokens - 0 and 1.
Amiga Software There is also a large selection of Amiga software, available in the archive. This includes AWE, the 6809e Emulator, Fractal Thingy, Lottery Predictor, SMT, and several Pop Profiles.
Utility Software and Programming Curiosities
Ndate for Windows The utility simply outputs the current date in a more sensible format than the Windows one. By default this format is yyyy-mm-dd. However, you can change that by specifying the format as an argument.
Backtick for Windows The utility simply parses the command line given to it, and executes any programs enclosed within `backticks`. It then takes its output and incorporates it directly into the command line.
which for Windows This is a suitable analog for the unix "which" command, under Windows. Understandably, any Google search containing the words "which", "windows", returns a series of results that are as good as useless. It was consequently quicker to write my own.
ArgPrompt This useful tool was written in 1998 to supply command line arguments to Windows programs, whilst remaining in the GUI. This was one of several short programs I wrote for Windows before seeing the light and moving (almost) full-time to Linux.
Sideways banner script In a coding frenzy I wrote (read: hacked!) a short perl script that would rotate stdout 90 degrees counter-clockwise. Useful with the Unix banner program.
Obfuscated Source A collection of my own obsfucations, including 12 days of Christmas, Mandelbrot set generator, 99 bottles of beer, jacko, and noise.
Home Automation
Minerva inerva is a complete, easy to use, home automation suite. Using Minerva you can make your home easier and cheaper to run and more secure. With Minerva you can: switch on your lights from anywhere, using a mobile phone or PC; email your video; check your security CCTV footage; control your central heating and much more.
Standards and References
Minerva inerva is the smart house and home automation protocol-cum-standard for controlling the various appliances in your house. It allows you to access your lights, video, CD-player, and MP3 collection remotely.
QuizML QuizML, as the name suggests, is a markup language to describe quiz questions in a structured manner.
The London Almanac This is an aggregation of all the conferences, socials, and networking events in and around London. It is targetted towards everyone working within the various technology disciplines we have in our great city.
The Magic Code agic is a secretive art. And one I'm slowly becoming more practised in. As a little light relief one day, I created "The Magic Code". It works in a similar vein to the geek code, as symbols let you describe your magical persuasions in a simple, succinct, form. If you see someone with a sig of Cb+O--M+Pb--VT+I-A--- you know from where it comes.
Happy Birthday The lyrics of Happy Birthday are still under copyright, even though the tune is not. I rectified this, with this CC version.
Alcohol by Volume A small collection of real English ales, with their relevant information.
Writings of Note
Fosdem: 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2007 2009 2010 FOSDEM - a geek trip to Brussels. Going abroad to experience different cultures.Or at least, a chance to eat chips, suffer rain, and watch American TV in adifferent country.
Cenobitic - A Review Artists have historically suffered. Suffered for their art. Suffered for their rights. The copyright law has prevented creative innovation and derivation until 70 years after the artists death - at which time their peers have similarly expired. With the advent of the Creative Commons license however, writers, musicians and artists now have a means whereby they can share their work for others to adapt and build upon; without fees or licensing agreements. Their art is able to live before their death. Two filmmakers took this concept one step further, and producing an Open movie called “Cenobitic” where the materials used in the production, and the technology involved, is Open. Open source. Open content. Open art. This is their story...
The 7 Saintly Virtues of Museum Curatorship This is one of the few pieces from the Blue Dust museum consultancy blurb that I've made available to the general public. I'm not sure if the public are interested in the quality of their museums, or not, but I am! And I'm hoping that this will re-establish dialogue between museums and their visitors.
Portions of this article were adapted for a piece in the Summer 2007 edition of Museum Practice.
15 years of email Notes of every email address I've ever had. This had wider circulation after Knuth announced he'd retired from email after 15 years.
Complete Bibliography and Biography Everything else I've written, that is publically available, is maintained here. The ones given here are the more (in)famous.
Free Software Magazine Blog y bi-weekly column featuring news and views (but mostly views) on the world of Free and Open Source.
Personal Blog Covering the issues and solutions to technology, product announcements, and general musings.
Book Diary: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 A brief coverage of the time I wrote my first book.
Music
Minimalism A four-track EP from 1993 featuring Wreath Of Bricks and the Turbo Nutter Theory.
Music for Science Fiction An album of tracks (two of which have been made available on the web) made for imaginary sci-fi films. Each piece tells of a story I never wrote.
My BBC A cult classic from 1991, where the entire track is made from the real-world samples of a BBC Micro, such as the disk drive, printer, and switch on beeps. It appeared on my EP, "Demonstration".
Entropy To be announced...
Symphony No. 1 in C# Minor To be announced...
Other Projects
The Beer Crate This is my weekly podcast for ale lovers the world over. Each week I look at the world of beer and brewing, investigating local, national and international breweries, and of course, tasting a wide selection of beers, ales, ciders, and perry's.
Tate Modern - How We Are Now I submitted four photographs, which appeared as part of a slidewho in the Tate Modern gallery.
Pinhole Photograph A selection of photographs taken using a camera made from black cardboard.
External Account Aggregators
Flickr Galleries of public images of hacks, trips, and other stuff.
YouTube My channel hosts all the video clips used in Instructables, and my own site.
Instructables How to explanations for most of my hacks. Includes by featured Menger Sponge and expensive chess set.
Brickshelf A gallery of LEGO projects. A barely use this instead, prefering instead to just post the images onto Flickr.