Freesteel Blog » 2010 » October

Saturday, October 30th, 2010 at 7:32 pm - - Whipping

Just not keeping up with blogging. So here are a couple of weeks in pictures.


Wednesday, October 27th, 2010 at 10:13 am - - Whipping 1 Comment »

There is litter on the streets.

If every person picked up one or two pieces of litter per week, then the city would be clean in a matter of months.

This is an application of crowd-sourcing.

Unfortunately it doesn’t happen.


Monday, October 18th, 2010 at 3:01 pm - - FOI 2 Comments »

I’ve looked at two disclosures today that had been sparked off by a flurry of FOI requests done following the publication of a national Crime Mapper webpage last year [blogged here].

The easy one was from the Derbyshire Constabulary who finally got round to disclosing their crime mapper contract with RockKitchenHarris, long after any of the other police forces had complied. They’d tried to refer to a completely out-of-context Tribunal Decision which suggested that Information is not the same as documents. I had to send to the ICO out of principle, and it appears they have written a stern letter to the Constabulary, and thus avoided making a decision notice.

The other one is from the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), and they’ve done well.


Tuesday, October 12th, 2010 at 4:47 pm - - Whipping 6 Comments »

This is a post about why there needs to be an election/election leaflets plug-in module for Ushahidi, and who ought to do it.

This Ushahidi system, which was made in Kenya in 2008, is a reasonably crude mobile-phone-aware geospatial content gathering system that has been applied in lots of different places. It has received constructive attention from cool people who have lots of time, vision and money.


Monday, October 11th, 2010 at 10:51 am - - Machining

It’s been a while since I’ve done any machining work. This bug has been pressing for a while, owing to the incompleteness of the pencil overthickness algorithm.

In theory pencil overthickness is straightforward. You have a fillet that has a radius bigger than the cutter, but you want the tool to run along the fillet, so you thicken the tool by several millimetres so it is bigger than the fillet and forms a pencil path (ie a linear locus of of cutter locations with two points of contact with the model), and then project that toolpath into the fillet at the half-way angle.

This is all very well, unless the there should actually be a pencil path for the smaller cutter, when the projection will miss the pencil pass and you’ll just get passes that are a little offset of where you would prefer them to be.


Thursday, October 7th, 2010 at 5:18 pm - - Kayak Dive

Someone in the university expressed an interest in kayak diving, and claimed that he went canoeing on the Mersey 4 times a week. I don’t believe you, I said. How about tomorrow morning?

So yesterday I caught the train to Rock Ferry, cycled to the water, and met him on the slip. I followed him out at high tide in one of those traditional wobbly plastic kayaks that likes to turn in circles. When it starts turning, you can paddle five times on the same side, and then it still insists on reversing. I was slow and far behind.

We got as far as the entrance of the Manchester Ship Canal, and then looked back to see the gas ship MV Magdalena bearing down on us.

I potter more than paddle, so my friend got cold waiting for me, having worn the right amount of clothes for a speedy race round the bay. It’s obvious that at mid-tide the Mersey gets rather exciting. Maybe some other time on my own unsinkable boat.

Monday, October 4th, 2010 at 5:53 pm - - Cave

The usual cavers get together for Hidden Earth 2010 was a week ago. I managed to bad some wall space to show off what yet needs to be done on the Leck Fell surveys. The two posters on the lower left are done. They’re of Ireby Fell Cavern and part of Rift Pot, the connection about which there was a Daily Mail article.