Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Lego Computer...and more wacky cases

I was a massive Lego kid as a child. Whether it was space ships (which it usually was) or cars, air planes, or bionic suits, I had an active imagination and Lego skills to boot. Others liked K'nex or Megablocks but for me it was Lego all the way.

Which is why I really liked seeing this in my feeds: a computer case made entirely out of Lego!

Now believe it or not, this isn't the first Lego case I've seen. There are two other neat ones here and here.

In fact, I think case modding is really cool and something I hope to get into in the future. The site I linked to above,, has a number of unique cases created around the "Mini-itx" form factor: a full fledged x86 computer on a mother board no more then 17 by 17 cm square. Given it's small size, it can be built into a variety of unique cases, though full size boards are also put into modded cases. I suggest to browse about the site and get some ideas for your own! Something a little nicer to look at than the traditional boxes :)

Friday, June 26, 2009

New Asus design = Commodore?

Last week, I posted about new technology (Twitter) being used on an old platform (Commodore 64). Today I saw a video from CES (Consumer Electronic Show) 2009 for a new "Netbook" style Asus computer: using a design that reminds me a considerable amount or the Commordore 64 and Vic 20 form factors. If you remember: the entire computer was housed entirely in the "keyboard" assembly, with all the ports directly on it, which hooked up to an external display. Asus new design also takes a full sized keyboard (albeit much smaller then the Commodore case) and sticks an entire computer in it...albeit with a small touch screen display on the side, about the size of a regular PDA screen. Together you have a light weight machine about the size of a keyboard capable of web browsing and email checking as well as other common activities which is entirely mobile.

I think the really neat thing about these machine though is the video outputs it carries which allow it to hook up to an ordinary sized screen. The keyboard has a HDMI connection which would (in theory) allow for some high definition videos to be played like a media player. The second laptop is also nifty: the regular touch pad replaced with a touch screen which can run its own independant computer which perform tasks without the main computer ever being booted.

The video for the Asus machines is here:

Also on the go are two new Thinkpads: one nice and small and the second extremely large with a secondary pull out screen. You can check them out here:

Monday, June 15, 2009

Tweeting on the Commodore 64

Hi everyone!

A fast note today to share something I think is extremely neat:
Using Twitter from your very own Commodore 64!

Yep, that's right. The ingenious Johan Van den Brande has created a Twitter client so you can view your friends updates and update your own twitter from the C64's beautiful 320 x 256 display!

Of course, you need a few hardware and software tweaks for an internet connection in the first place. There's a lot more information plus screen shots/videos on the site here:

Granted, my first computer was a Commodore Vic 20, not a C64, but seeing those screen images sure brings back fond memories! Enjoy.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Things that aren't standardized but should be

Hello everyone! Something a tad different today. Are you familiar with the International Organization for Standardization? Well, they're an organization responsible for publishing "standardizations" of various things which can be used internally for interoperability/communication purposes. For example the "ISO 7001" standard for public information signage defining a common set of symbols so people understand where certain facilities are even if they don't understand the language.

There are still many things not standardized and things that arguably shouldn't be.

I developed this list last summer for fun, things which have no standardization but, just maybe, should have some :). Enjoy! Note: most of the numbers have some connection to their "standards" but they might not be obvious at first ;).

ISO 0000 - Pronouciation of the word "ISO"
ISO 1337 - Short hand, alpha numeric language used in internet communication
ISO 1984 - Tetris
ISO 2063 - Warp Drive
ISO 7448 - Toilet Paper Quilt Patterns
ISO 6463 - Telekinesis
ISO 3141 - Pi
ISO 7399 - The Perfect Mate
ISO 77468 - Fingerprint
ISO 43278 - Love
ISO 98669 - Lust
ISO 12080 - Blood Pressure
ISO 666 - Evil
ISO 6663 - Length of time you may be left waiting
ISO 733 - Length of time to use the bathroom
ISO 2583 - Color of the sky
ISO 25324 - Smell of body odor
ISO 221 - Random Algorithm

What would you like to standardize? Let us know, and take care!