jeweled platypus


sunday, february 26, 2006
Chickens are for viewing

Do you use Chicken of the VNC? Of course you do! It’s a great VNC (remote computer access) client. The only problem is that the icon isn’t very Aqualike. It’s cute, but doesn’t look nice with the other icons in my dock. So I replaced it with a chicken I found in my horrifically huge (~70 mb) collection of pretty icons. Now it looks like this:

the chicken in the application switcher

I can’t remember where I got this icon, though. It was part of some excellent collection of random icons that is now distributed throughout my obsessively organized icon subdirectories. So, until I figure out where to send you to download the collection, here’s the chicken icon. You can use Candybar to change the application icon, or just copy-and-paste the icon using the relevant Get Info windows.

Update 2/26/06 12:38: It’s from Pixel Pop v3 at widgetwidget. They’re charging for it now, though, so I probably shouldn’t give this one away.

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thursday, february 23, 2006
Apparently this is my invented world

About ten hours later, I had a third project for photography class. I’d never really used Photoshop before this, so don’t laugh.

the whole thing

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saturday, february 18, 2006
Things are what they seem

This is what my desk looks like.

a moleskine and some stuff

This is what I look like.

me in a bathroom mirror wearing ipod earbuds

Now you know!

Update 2/18/06 02:28: So they’re onto us and our self-portraits.

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monday, february 13, 2006
Amanuensis bibliotics puissance

Four years ago, I made a list of words to learn, one for each day of the year or so. That didn’t work. But I went back and looked at the list again today, and I’ve learned about half of the words. Here are some that looked vaguely familiar, and what the dictionary said about them (sort of).

This is the list of words I still don’t know, just so you can look through them and think “Ha! I know that one and she doesn’t!”.

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Walking as a way to think

Instead of actually doing my homework, I take silly pictures and think about categorization schemes for wikis, bermuda buttercups, and the perfect pocket.

a guy walking in isla vista

a guy walking in isla vista

My second photo project is kind of boring, but I like it too.

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friday, february 10, 2006
Some strange and pretty patches

a red and a blue patch on the knee of my jeans

American military patches are beautiful, and so I find myself drooling over the eBay listings even after I have filled all the holes in my jeans with patches. This is a bit weird, because I’m a rational person and I don’t like war. However, the two thoughts might be compatible. Military patches don’t really promote violence; they’re meant to reinforce soldier morale and represent information.

I’m interested in brands — advertising, marketing, logos, packaging, blah blah blah — which means I like design that represents information as a way to sell things. Military insignia is another giant design problem: create a zillion little emblems for a group of hierarchical organizations with a lot of history and culture. The results are often aesthetically pleasing.

This is what I mean: pretty! (Click for bigger pictures; stolen from auctions one and two.)

a collection of patches

another part of the same collection

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Things I made a while ago

a sanded-down Altoids tin

I sanded down an Altoids tin to make a brushed-metal case for my iPod Shuffle. Yay!

a clay turtle, penguin, head, and apple

A turtle, a penguin, and a head; I still have to paint these little guys. The apple is a salt cellar, inspired by one my mom made in college that we still use. The other little bowl and dish didn’t turn out very well.

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wednesday, february 08, 2006
This is geeky enough for you

At one point, I wondered whether the introduction of Dashboard widgets to OS X would make menubar items obsolete. But I imagine Apple made sure that the two places for accessories are different enough to allow both kinds to thrive. Widgets are just another opportunity to collect shiny things! In other news, I recently updated super OS X menubar items with a bunch of new items and fixed links.

Some menubar items are cramped inside 25x22 pixels, so widgets take their place on my computer; the weather forecast and system statistics both live in the Dashboard now. But a little calendar and new email notifier both still live on the menubar — even though there are widgets that do the same things — because I like to see them all the time. So the distinction between menubar item and widget has to do with how often I want to see the item’s information, how much information it has, and maybe whether the item looks better in black and white (the only true menubar colors) or glossy black and cool colors (my weird Dashboard color scheme).

These are items that are available both as menubar items and Dashboard widgets, and this is where I think they belong. Unlinked items are included in OS X.

thing should be on menubar? should be on Dashboard?
Calendar yes no
Countdown clock no yes
Email notifier yes no
iTunes control yes no
Moon phase no yes
Google search no no
System monitors no yes
Uptime display no yes
Weather forecast no yes

I’d like iScrobbler (the plugin) to be a widget instead of a menubar item. It doesn’t do anything useful on my menubar except distract me with green flashes. An iScrobbler widget could display some statistics when I felt like looking at it while hiding away and doing its own thing most of the time.

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wednesday, february 01, 2006
Vegetarian Oedipus Complex

I had a dream last night that my friend and I were trying to breed puppies, so we had to obtain spinach and dog eggs. I bought the spinach, but the dog eggs were a bit difficult to find. We went into a sketchy part of the city and bought them from a prostitute. Then I wasn’t sure how spinach and dog eggs put together would produce dog tadpoles, but the friend told me that we just had to put them in tinfoil and keep the mixture warm (duh).

Which has nothing to do with the following happy bowl of salad.

a happy bowl of salad

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I’m Britta Gustafson.

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