Combine large, bold images with the beautifully crafted words of your story. Shorthand makes this easy, so start now! View the story Shorthand Beautifully simple storytelling The conservation-restoration of the frescoes of the Sistine Chapel was one of the most significant conservation-restorations of the 20th century. The Sistine Chapel was built by Pope Sixtus IV Read more about Shorthand[…]

Test driving Socrata for Open Data

The Queensland Police Service recently published some data about reported offences from July 1997 to June 2012. I was interested to see how Socrata would handle that data. Here’s the results. Powered by Socrata Note that the graph is only displaying the first few years worth of data. Also note that this experiment was conducted Read more about Test driving Socrata for Open Data[…]

Spork to Spin

In my last post, I documented the trials and tribulations of getting spork working properly with RSpec, Cucumber, SimpleCov and Mongoid, and a solution I devised to the problems. I also posted my solution to the SimpleCov issues list on GitHub. Then Christoph Olszowka, the maintainer of SimpleCov introduced me to spin, a lightweight alternative Read more about Spork to Spin[…]

When spork puts a fork in your cucumber and a spanner in your specs

TL;DR: Getting Rails, RSpec, Cucumber and SimpleCov to play nicely with spork is a pain. However, it is possible to get them all working together. Ensure config.cache_classes = true, that Rails threadsafe mode (config.threadsafe!) is not enabled, and then see my spec_helper.rb file below. So, I’m hacking again. How I have missed it. It has Read more about When spork puts a fork in your cucumber and a spanner in your specs[…]

No startup culture in Australia

Occasionally I go back and read some of Paul Graham‘s past essays. I find them to be a source of enlightenment, mostly on issues surrounding startups. Some gems are consigned to the footnotes: There are two very different types of startup: one kind that evolves naturally, and one kind that’s called into being to “commercialize” Read more about No startup culture in Australia[…]

RSpec: verifying model instance creation

UPDATE: I think this post may be a complete waste of time. Just stub out the valid? method on your model to return true or false depending upon what you’re testing. See Ryan Bates’ RailsCast on how he tests controllers. I’m a freaking idiot sometimes. As a good little rspeccer, I try hard to write Read more about RSpec: verifying model instance creation[…]

Citemine: a new way to do peer review and publishing

As you probably know, I’m a ubicomp researcher by day. However, on the side, NICTA‘s allowed me to allocate some of my time to develop a new way for researchers to review and publish papers. We’ve deployed a very early proof-of-concept of our idea called Citemine. We think Citemine has several nice properties, including a Read more about Citemine: a new way to do peer review and publishing[…]

The PACE framework for context-aware computing

A long time ago, in a Cooperative Research Centre far, far away (well, actually, it used to be just across the road from where I’m writing this post, but it sadly met its demise), a small group of researchers worked on a ubiquitous computing project that came to be known as PACE: Pervasive Autonomic Context-aware Read more about The PACE framework for context-aware computing[…]

Free internet access on the train in Brisbane

Queensland Rail will be offering south-east Queensland commuters free wireless access to the internet from early 2010, according to the Minister for Transport, Rachel Nolan. This access will use spare capacity on the infrastructure used to transmit real-time video footage from surveillance cameras to QR’s control room at Central Station. One thing from that story Read more about Free internet access on the train in Brisbane[…]