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Present Perfect

new skill

Filed under: Life — Thomas @ 11:43 pm

11:43 pm

Was forced to pick up a new skill today – driving through pouring rain with non-functional wipers. I had to drive for 2 hours like that. I got out of the car all cross-eyed and with a hint of headache.

The trick is to focus on the tail lights of other cars and the white lines, and keep your distance. And, possibly counterintuitively, driving faster or getting take over by big trucks splashing water all around actually helps in this situation.


Filed under: General — Thomas @ 7:18 pm

7:18 pm

Faithful readers already know I am not the biggest fan of dentists. Last year in August I had an urgent problem, and my regular Spanish dental office apparently was closed all of August, without any information on what to do if I had an urgent problem, not on their voice mail and not on their website (which by the way was so broken that it scaled the flash animation to 10% of the page width, but I digress).

I ended up in the emergency dental office on Passeig de Gracia, and there I was helped very well by a very good young doctor. I felt I finally found the perfect dentist.

That is, up to the point where I got an infection on one of my teeth, and she told me it would cost anywhere between 2000 and 4000 euro to get the tooth pulled and a bridge or an implant made, and that it wasn’t covered by my health care.

I guess that’s when I decided to be stupid and try and get it fixed in Belgium. And for that I needed to make sure my health insurance was still ok in Belgium, and for that I needed some E-three-digit form that I still don’t have my hands on after 9 months.

When last month the left part of my body started feeling strange I thought it was time to just go find a dentist and get it fixed, coverage or no.

My wishes for a dentist are pretty simple. It has to be a woman (from my experience I find they are usually more emphatical), I prefer them relatively young (I have this vague hope that they are more likely to be up-to-date with the latest technology) and it helps if they speak my language. Now that I live here in Brussels though, of course most dentists are French. And probably not that easy to get to.

So in the end I found

Vorbis in Flash

Filed under: Hacking — Thomas @ 7:50 am

7:50 am

I was wondering why Arek was arriving later than usual to work, to the point of being late at his own developer meeting where just a week before he instituted a rule that the last person in the meeting is to buy the rest of the team beer on Friday. This week he told me why, and yesterday he blogged about it: an implementation of the Vorbis decoder that works in Flash Player (albeit the newer version 10). It’s based on the Jorbis code which we took for Cortado, and it looks like it’s more than fast enough too.

I’m sure he wouldn’t mind you buying him beer for this so he can make good on his promise to the rest of our team. And he probably accepts pre-orders for a Theora decoder in beer too :)

Congratulations Arek on the release!

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