Get Knotted!

For a product that I am working on, I need to attach a rope to the product. Simple, I thought, tie a knot. My first feeble attempts fell apart. Later attempts did the job, but looked a mess. A quick Google later, and I had a knot that seems to do the job. The tucked double overhand. Three simple images are enough to explain how the knot works. Moments later I had the knot off pat, and decided to show the production department.

All of a sudden we hit a problem. For some reason, no one else is able to tie this knot! I can’t believe that I am particularly gifted in this area, but maybe I am not a dumb as I think sometimes. Is this a hard knot?

This animation was done in Povray. I got fed up of trying to show the knot to people, so next time they ask, they will get a link to this.

New Bike. Well maybe….

This is starting to do my head in. A few months ago, it became apparent the my old Claude Butler hybrid bike was nearing the end of its useful life. For the amount of miles it has done, I have been pleased considering it was reasonably cheap. Well it now seems that all the components are wearing out at the same time. The front rim is worn out by the brakes. The rear wheel needs a new hub. The chain, chain rings and sprockets all need replacing. To look at the rear sprocket it is amazing it works at all.

The reason this bike was a cheap one, was to find out if it would get used. In the past, it could be claimed that exercise equipment was not always put to it full use in this house 🙂 Well the bike has been great. Most weeks it gets me to work three days, which is a 22 mile (35 km) round trip. One reason I have been so keen to use it is the alternative route to work on those days is to use the train, which is also used by the local Grammer School kids. So, as the bike is getting used, a simple replacement is not worth it. I need an upgrade!

This is my problem. What do I buy? Having spent far to long considering this problem already myself, and to avoid waffling on too long here, I have decided on a Cannondale Bad Boy Singlespeed.

My reasons for this choice are:

  • I want a road bike, but I don’t want to wear Lycra
  • I want to go down the occasional foot path
  • Low maintainance
  • It looks darn cool

Some doubts

  • Eccentric Bottom Bracket is a know weakness
  • Single Speed. What if I really need gears?

That final doubt is manageable. I am sure that the distance I am riding will not be too hard to get used to. There is only one significant hill, and I can walk that if it is too much to start with. Also, as the bike has an eccentric Bottom Bracket, it will be possible to upgrade the rear wheel to one with a hub gear with minimal fuss.

Please comment if you have any other great ideas for an £800 budget.

Google Chrome

This has been rumoured for a long time. Now it is here. Google have created their own web browser. Unfortunately it is only for Windows at the moment, but I understand that it will eventually be available for Linux.

In the mean time I plan on using it at work.

First impressions are that it is very fast. Certainly on Google pages such as Gmail and Google Maps. Even Openstreetmap seems very smooth.

As it is Open Source, I hope that it has the desired intention of moving the whole browser world forward. The next question is, how long before I start to see Google Chrome appear in the logs of my web server?