I think I’m more of a Carl Phillip Emanuel kind of guy than a Johann Sebastian kind of guy.

off yer bike: a follow up of sorts

Long ago I wrote http://michaelawolf.name/blog/2013/11/02/off-yer-bike-notes/.

What I wrote there still, in my opinion, sound advice. Since then, however, after a frustrating period where I was getting flats every two or three weeks, I changed my tires to Schwalbe Marathons. In addition to being far more puncture resistant, these tires are also slightly smaller. As a a result, my bike is much easier to fold than it had been.

In spite of making my bike slightly slower, the Marathons were a worthy upgrade, all the more so because it’s easy to fold again.

Here, Off yer bike explains another workaround, this one requiring tools. But it looks pretty easy to carry out.

M-x kill-rectangle-as-text

Emacs includes some interesting functionality for dealing with rectangular regions of text. But I’ve long felt as though it were only half-complete — there are many useful things that you just can’t easily do with them, such as selecting a rectangle and adding it to the kill ring in such a way that you can later yank it as though it were regular text.

It’s possible, though, if you know how, and fortunately a kind person on freenode helped me to figure out how.

;; http://emacs.stackexchange.com/a/3174 via xtreak on freenode
(defun youngfrog/copy-rectangle-to-kill-ring (start end)
  "Saves a rectangle to the normal kill ring. Not suitable for yank-rectangle."
  (interactive "r")
  (let ((lines (extract-rectangle start end)))
      (while lines ;; insert-rectangle, but without the unneeded stuff
        ;; (most importantly no push-mark)
        (insert-for-yank (car lines))
        (insert "\n")
        (setq lines (cdr lines)))
        (kill-ring-save (point-min) (point-max)))))

(defun kill-rectangle-as-text (b e)
  (interactive "r")
  (progn (youngfrog/copy-rectangle-to-kill-ring b e)
  (delete-rectangle b e)))

Then you can select a rectangle as usual and say M-x kill-rectangle-as-text. Later you can C-y as usual.

The elisp looks horrible here, but it looks much better in this gist.

the memrise prize

Today I learned about the Memrise Prize. As a mostly* happy user of Memrise, I really hope that this bears fruit.

* Many of the wordlists, even ones provided by Memrise, are deficient in numerous ways; the German wordlists lack principle parts of both nouns and verbs, for instance. Also, the iPhone app decides to log me out randomly. In spite of these complaints, I use it enough and get enough value out of it that I should start paying for it.

highly realistic

I wrote this thing almost eight years ago.

Caller: Dice K has this great pitch, you hear about it? It’s called the gyroball. It is like a slurve slider curve but it is faster and it curves so much that it turns around and is caught by the first baseman. I ain’t seen nothing like it.

I still think it’s pretty funny.