Hot air balloon

One of these dropped down in front of me while on a bicycle ride. I photographed it using my mobile phone and my GPS is telling me we are at N 60°14.702' and E 25°01.442'. I am starting to appreciate the fact that I always have a camera with me, even if it is somewhat lacking in quality.

Kernel panic in the bus

"Kernel panic: Aiee, killing interrupt handler!"

That is what it said on the TFT in the bus today. Having screens for the passengers in the bus, usually showing news and advertisements, is a new phenomenon here in Helsinki.

Yes, computers crash and this was not a critical component in our information society, so what is the big deal? Well, I still find it kind of funny being driven around town with a kernel panic in front of my face. Silly me.

10 years of post modem (1996-2005)

It was 10 years ago (kind of) that I abandoned my modem. To commemorate the occasion, I upgraded my DSL connection at home to "full rate" witch is 8 Mbps downstream and 1 Mbps upstream.

In 1996 I was still using my trusty old SupraModem 14.400 - the one with a fancy little matrix display on the front. Cutting edge at the time was 28.800 bps but I had my mind set on a leased line - no more counting minutes and having to go off-line. I wanted a 24/7 connection.

Assembly '05

The Assembly '05 Computer Festival (yes, that is what they call it) is once again taking place in Helsinki, Finland. Here part of the video crew is controlling the "Assembly TV" live broadcast from the event.

This is the 14th time Assembly has been arranged and a lot has changed since the time when these events used to be called "copy parties" or "demo parties". Software piracy is nowhere to be seen and very few of the participants actually create any demos - most just play network games.

What is the point of hauling your computer somewhere just to hook it up to a network in this day and age when you have got a broadband connection at home? Sure, by sitting in the same high-speed LAN the experience is a bit better, but still.

It will be interesting to see if Assembly continues to develop as an event or if it will fade away. The social aspects of the event has probably allways been important but now it is starting to be the only reason why someone might want to attend. There are signs of the event developing: now they have seminars and I personally like checking out what the hardware stores at the event are selling - although I usually end up shopping at some on-line store anyway where the selection is wider.

Sony PSP browser

Just upgraded my Sony PSP to firmware 2.0 and tested the new built in browser - it works wery well.

The screen is a lot better than this photo leads you to belive, but if you have used the PSP you know how good the screen is. Still, 480x272 is quite a small screen but the two "fit to screen" modes available in the browser do a decent job at compensating for the limited resolution. And 480x272 is certainly a lot better than 320x240 on old PocketPC devices or the tiny screens of Symbian Series 60 devices.
And I love the default font, it is really estetic.

Still, the PSP will not replace my Nokia 9500 when it comes to browsing. The 9500 has a bigger screen, both in size (width) and resolution (640 pixels compared to the PSP's 480). The 9500 also has a keyboard (witch is the reason I was willing to spend such a lot of money on it) and it allways works - regardless if there is GSM, GPRS, Edge or WiFi coverage.

But considering how much cheaper the PSP is, this is indeed a great device. No other device offers you such a good mobile surfing experience at this price.