Chao Lam

Working on the next small things …

Archive for September 2009

Finally fixed my MBP’s once a week “blue (well, grey) screen of death”

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I have to adpanicmit it – my mac has been acting like a windows machine ever since I upgraded to Leopard (no, not Snow Leopard). OK, only in this respect: it’s been crashing on me every week or two.

At first I thought it was buggy Leopard, then I thought it was my bluetooth keyboard (since it happened most often when the keyboard initiated a connection to my mac). But then I replaced it with a wired keyboard, and it still happened – just a little less.

Well, I finally upgraded to Snow Leopard on a brand new spanking MacBook Pro and it still happened (after a few days). That was the straw that broke the camel’s back I started being superstitious and suspecting everything including my USB hub or my display monitor. I started blabbering my problem to everyone.

Well, that blabbering actually worked. My genius syadmin-savvy brother Ming suggested I look at the crawl stack of the kernel panic report. I protested that they were just filled with hex numbers. But then I thought of looking them up on the console log. And lo behold, just beneath the sea of hex numbers, was revealed the true source of my agony.

It was DoubleCommand, a utility I had installed eons ago that allowed me to mimick “forward delete” on a mac notebook keyboard. It worked so well that I had forgotten I had installed it. And the crash was so intermittent that I wasn’t able to link it as the buggy software for years! And it turns out they actually had a fix for it over a year ago – I just didn’t know.

So, for the 3 remaining folks who suffer from this affliction, hope your googling brings you here 🙂

DoubleCommand.

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Written by Chao

September 25, 2009 at 5:28 pm

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Designing a large scale community moderation system for Yahoo! Answers – Wikimania

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All of our sites require user submission, and at a certain point they all get bogged down by spam (notably clipclip and coolqs). So, this video about how the Yahoo Answers moderations system came about and evolved seems particularly interesting…

Designing a large scale community moderation system for Yahoo! Answers – Wikimania.

Written by Chao

September 17, 2009 at 4:24 am

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Sending a camera up 100,000 feet – for $150!

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space.1337arts. Wishing I were a student again 🙂 Sounds like a fun project to try out.

Picture from 93000 feet up

Written by Chao

September 17, 2009 at 12:52 am

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Snow Leopard in all its geeky details

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Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard: the Ars Technica review – Ars Technica.

Warning: all 23 pages worth! But interesting details about what exactly is 32-bit and 64-bit about 10.6, improved compilers, closures in C?!… and I’m still only on page 12!

Written by Chao

September 3, 2009 at 5:02 am

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