Monday, 26 September 2011

Time To Kick Some Ass

A) Because, this is a pretty kick ass song!
B) Because a dear friend of mine is in. Way to go Stein!
C) Also free advertisement for the Norwegian band BULK
D) Enjoy!

Saturday, 24 September 2011

People Love My Stuff!

Some time ago.. like over two years ago, I made some movie genre posters. Mostly because at the time there weren't any. I had/have XBMC running on an old Xbox 1 as my main source of awesome entertainment in the living room and decided that I wanted to have my movies sorted according to genres. So yeah, at the time there weren't any, because apparently people hadn't felt that need.. or some other reason.

So what did I do? Well obviously I made my own genre posters, figuring that at the very least than I could make them look like whatever I desired. And "The Reel, Movie Genre Posters" where born. I came up with that name recently, catchy isn't it? At that time I was quite an active member of the forum at so I happen to stumble upon someone asking about movie genre posters, some time after I had made them. I quickly posted a picture of them, wondering it they had something like this in mind? And suddenly a whole bunch of people started asking where I got those, and how they could get them too. Well, since I am a big fan of sharing.. I still am. I gave them what I had, which at that time was 15—in my mind "okay" looking posters—they loved them, apparently.

Encouraged by this I started thinking how I could improve them, since I had never made them for anyone but myself to begin with. I still remember playing around with some ideas in Photoshop using slightly differently styled film reel frames. It all felt a bit lacking. Then I started playing around with a more black and white look, thinking that it would be able to fit better with all the different skins that were available to XBMC.

 So yeah.. my first experiment with less coloured ones looked like this, pretty crappy ey? I didn't like the text there, because it constricted the posters to English, but at the same time they seemed a bit lacking such a small picture. But at least I was getting closer. Then it hit me! Silhouettes, silhouettes would be very symbolic and also speak to people on a more primal level, no need for any text, the images themselves would say all that needed to be said.

And so, "The Silhouettes" were born. Again, catchy isn't it?

 And this is what they looked like.. all 69 (current amount) of them. Yeah, I went a bit over-board and made significantly more of them this time, so there would be enough for most of the genres that exist. They were very well received and as such are now very much a part of many XBMC skins by default, which I think is totally awesome and I fully support it. Actually I think almost all the major skins for XBMC nowadays has my posters as default, if not The Silhouettes, they usually have The Reels. Which I made a template for and "digitalhigh", another member at XBMC forum expanded on my original concept of measly 15 posters, to the much better amount of 42. Kudos to you "digitalhigh"!

So.. if this was over two years ago, why talk about it now?

Because, not only do these posters have a wonderful home at XBMC.. They are more and more becoming the standard—to this day, I haven't seen any other genre posters other than the ones I have designed—in other media centers too. Which is just freaking unbelievable.. in an awesome way. As of September the 24th, my posters now officially have a home at mediaportal too. You can read about in the post "The Future is Here!". My name is totally in the article. So yeah, that's why I'm talking about it now, to shamelessly plug my own awesome-ness.

Interestingly enough, people still seem to like The Reels as much as they like The Silhouettes, which to me is a little odd though. Mostly because The Reels still feel a little like that weird cousin one is ashamed of, whilst The Silhouettes are my proud offspring.

Different strokes I suppose, but I'm still greatly honoured that they are so appreciated.

Friday, 23 September 2011

The Process

So, the missus liked her book(s).. a lot.. unless she's lying of course. But for the sake of this post I'm going to assume she isn't. So yeah, surprise! She got "The Picture of Dorian Gray" by Oscar Wilde, inspired by the the first edition, first printing of 1891. It's her favourite fictional book.. ever.

In that book, Dorian receives a book by Sir Henry Wotton.. allegedly—according to Oscar Wilde himself in his trial—that particular book is "À rebours" by J.-K. Huysmans, 1884. So naturally because I did tell you was going to put a book in her book.. dawg. I re-created "À rebours" as well. And based it on the first edition, first printing of that one as well.

Here's a huge picture of the basic progress because.. well you know the old saying, "A picture is worth more than a thousand words".. well.. Here's 9000 words for you. Not including the preface. My apologies for the final picture being kind of blurry and crappy.

Editors (still me) note: Yes, The Picture of Dorian Gray was technically first published in 20 June 1890, in the July issue of Lippincott's Monthly Magazine. But, that one doesn't really have a book cover—so to speak—to base anything on, so I went with the first edition, first printing instead. However the book itself is still the 13 chapter non-revised edition. Not the 20 chapter edited for less homo-eroticism. So there. Enjoy the picture(s).

Monday, 19 September 2011

Often and Shorter

Some time ago I had the lucky accident of buying single blade disposable razor blades, which I then obviously blogged about. Upon having blogged—you can shut up now Firefox, I get that "blogged" is not a proper verb, deal with it—about the aforementioned items I actually received some feedback and such, not here, but at "other" places—"other" being Facebook I am a little ashamed to admit, anyway...—where someone suggested that I could just as well boil my blades a little bit, no need to rinse them in alcohol.

So now today, I thought "Hey, I'm actually going to try that!". I mean, let's face it.. I am a cheap bastard and whenever I can cut corners on non-essentials, like for instance razor blades or proper sleep, I will gladly and haphazardly try out all sorts of things. That came out a little wrong but I trust you know what I mean. So obviously I boiled some razor blades when I got home from work. Umm.. yeah.. it didn't really work as awesomely as I had hoped. Who would have guessed that plastic, kind of melts and bends when exposed to high enough temperature? Oh, everyone?! Well I hadn't given that any thought at all. At least they made for a good laugh between me and the missus, who was a bit sceptical at the idea to begin with.

On a completely different note I have now also procured the last item required to make my Acoustic Stomp Box. So I suppose I really don't have any more excuses as to why I shouldn't finish it now. Damn it. Maybe that should the my little project for the day? Finish the Box so that I can disturb the neighbours in an entirely new way, like they don't get enough of the singing/guitar/ukulele/harmonica combo. Anyway. I thought I would keep this one short(er) for a change. Often and shorter will be my new blog motto.. that or.. well.. not.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Don't Tell My Wife

My wife's birthday is coming up soon, and last year I felt a bit short on the whole present-giving. To be perfectly honest I can't even remember what I gave her—then again–neither can she so I suppose that's okay. But with that in mind I had a moment of clarity a couple of weeks ago, an epiphany if you will. The awesome-est birthday present ever! A present to make all the other presents feel inadequate and like they should not have let themselves go like that and maybe work out a bit more often or at least not eat so unhealthy all the time. As you might have already noticed I am quite pleased with myself this year. And not to blow my own phallic symbol too much but I should be, it is really that awesome. And the best part, is that I decided to go all meta on her ass... yeah, I thought that sounded weird too. Then again, saying "yo dawg, I heard you like books so I put a book in yo' book, so you can read while you read!" would sound weird too...

Actually, that wasn't so bad. Damn it. Either way, neither of them makes a lot of sense right now, but they will in a couple of days when all is revealed. Since she might read this I won't spoil it yet—which means—you and her will have to wait a little more.

Obviously she getting a book, that's not the secret. Neither is which book she's getting, because well you.. it's kind of pictured down below. It's everything that comes after and before that, that is the secret. Pretty sneaky ey?

Saturday, 17 September 2011


So now it's been a week and a day since the launch of our new NHL Stats web page. And except for a minor bug where it insists that "You have missed one or more fields" when you add a match everything has been pretty smooth sailing. Why do I call that a minor bug I pretend you ask? Well, because it still adds a match to the database every time, so obviously I have just missed something in the echo loop. But I can get it fixed at the same time I do the update to the web page. Since it's not feature-complete anyway.. We suffered a mild case of premature launchulation. And like I already said, a couple of more features to come, some bug fixing, some minor cosmetic changes based on feedback but then that's it. I shouldn't have to do anything after that.. hopefully. Since a dear friend of mine—Ted Bundy—wanted me to make a post about how the launch party went, I thought I would do just that, right now.

Basically our plan for the weekend was pretty simple. Mr. Cruise would get of work at 19.00, so we would meet up shortly after that and start drinking and playing NHL12. Oh if things were only so easy, by 18.55 it was raining on a Biblical scale—I'm exaggerating for effect, but it was pretty bad—so much so, that there was no way in [insert religious place of punishment in the afterlife] that any of us were going to walk. Luckily for us though, we had more people joining our little get-together, so a semi-coordinated car ride later we had all arrived at Mr. Cruise's place. At this point the story gets significantly shorter since there was alcohol involved and my memory is a bit impaired by the second day.

Needless to say, the launch went very well. Everyone really liked the web page although some had some minor suggestions, but nothing major or life-changing. I really wanted to celebrate having spent the majority of my vacation building the 'effin thing, so I brought a bottle of champagne.. figuring no one else would have thought of that. Turns out I was wrong because Mr. Sock had also had the same idea.. my bottle was bigger than his though. But the gesture was appreciated either way. So thanks for that. We had arranged to have two displays and two Xboxes so four people could play at the same time. And well.. we all just got shit-faced and played NHL12. I want to remember there was some Lips being played too, at a later point but I can't remember which day that was.

You see, we partied until something like 4 or 5 in the morning, then we slept a couple of hours and woke up to; Mr. Cruise having a blood-alcohol content of 3,0‰ and a wounded eye-lid, Mr. Sock had 1,2‰ and I had 0,55‰. They claim it's because I drank the least, which is definitely true since I ended my evening with a couple of liters of water because I was already drunk enough. But I still want to add that my liver is better than your liver.. and "No.. you can't train your liver." But after that I made some "espresso" whilst someone else—I think—made some regular filtered coffee. And after we had had some coffee in us, we all just opened the first morning beer and thus the impaireth memorieth beginneth.

We all had—at least I hope—a lot of fun and come Sunday, damn I was tired. Not so much hungover though which is/was nice.

And after nine days of stats—not all of those days played obviously—our total games are now at 74 with total goals made 435. You can pretty clearly make out the rest of the stats in the screenshots down below, so I won't point out how bad I am. At least my win ratio is one percentage point higher than last season's .25.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Why So Secretive?

Well.. it's been a while since I have posted anything now and some of you might be wondering why? Well, you can all stop wondering now. Yeah, sure I have had a four week vacation, that just ended. And well sure.. one would think that with all that time on my hands I should have been able to squeeze out at least a couple of posts.

But no, here I am.. Two and a half weeks since my last post. So why have I been so busy. Well. Me and some friends like to get together and play NHL on Xbox 360 every now and then.. and well, we are all (to some degree) sucker for statistics. So it makes a lot of sense that we used to have an excel file to keep track of our individual stats.

We called it NHL Stats v. 2.0.. this was about a year ago, coincidently around the same time that I made a joke about how version 3 should be a web-interface with a sql database as backend. So.. I'm guessing you have probably already figured out what happened next. Well.. come spring and summer we started talking having a launch party in honour of NHL 12.. and of course Mr. Cruise (yeah, I'm going call him that now) remembered my little joke from last year. We quickly realised that Microsoft's Excel just wasn't going to cut it any more.. mostly because our little group had changed a lot since we first made the excel file, some people simply didn't play as much any more, whilst others whom had been more absent earlier were now frequently joining our gaming nights. So things needed to change whichever way we were going to go. So there I was with my big mouth again, "Well, I have been dying for an excuse to learn SQL anyway!". Yeah.. I didn't actually know any SQL before I started this project, but that's never really stopped me before so..

Still to do, before it's completely done. "View all matches as table data", "Modify how passing is calculated, because apparently those fuckers at EA Canada changed it from NHL 11 to NHL 12 and I just found out about it", "View all players as table data", "View player rank progression over time". But that's about it.

Anyway. Enough talk, you didn't come here after all this time to read my rambling. You came here hoping to see some glory shots.. and trust, there will be glory shots.. and by God, they are glorious. I am really pleased with how everything turned out. And many, many thanks to Beije for always kindly answering my sometimes odd questions about database management. And to Timo, who has had as much a part in this project even though he didn't code it.. or did the design. But Timo knows hockey.. which I don't as much, and many great ideas that you see here came from his mouth and mind first, then we both just fine-tuned it.. and tweaked it.. until it was awesome! Although I have to give him credit when he solved my issue of not being able to access multidimensional arrays in a SELECT statement.

EDIT: Also big thanks to Dan who so graciously provided hosting again. It's awesome mate, so thanks!

But now.. seriously.. no more talking.. it's picture time! And first, a picture of where it all started.. a long, long time.. I give you. Version 1.0

The Sepia tone has not been added later, for some reason we made it look like this.

Then there was version 2.0. The one that was pretty to look at but difficult to add players to.

Version 3.0 a.k.a. Project Creampie. Because I'm a pervert. This the main-page.

Main page..with the cards flipped for more stats

The next group of players slide in..

Someone missed a field when trying to add a match. Don't worry, all incorrect field are highlighted.

Much better.. Now if you only hadn't lost.

The cards are auto-sorted according to who played most recently.

It's also possible to see how you compare to a player with just the games between you two.

All the stats are re-calulated according to just your games. With the exception of rank title and class.

Again.. flippable cards here too.

By going to the RANKS & TROPHIES Menu you get a good overview of the possibilities out there

It's easier to add a new player than it is to change your privacy settings on

Feedback message so you know that what you did went well.

You can freely edit a player as well. In case you ever decide to change your default team colour..or something.

Here, I have changed my team to Nashville Predators instead, to show you how the card changes accordingly.

At some point, there will be a new NHL game.. and when that happens. We'll just add it here.

The dots turn into UP or DOWN arrow icons depending on if your recent stats improves or declines.

Once you have earned a trophy you can hover to see why.