Archive for January, 2007

Print Unix File Timestamp Accurate Down to Seconds

by on Jan.31, 2007, under Posts

As most of us know and need, ls -l shows us detailed information about files in a directory.

someone@somewhere:/opt/mozilla/icons $ ls -l
total 32
-rw-r–r– 1 bin bin 1668 Mar 5 2004 mozicon16.xpm
-rw-r–r– 1 bin bin 2944 Mar 5 2004 mozicon50.xpm

Here is a single perl command that can print the timestamp of files with full date and time, accurate down to the seconds:

perl -e ‘foreach(@ARGV){$t =localtime ( ( ( stat ( $_ ) ) [9] ) ); printf(“%-20s %s\n”,$_,$t);}’ *

Replace the asterisk at the end of the command with any filename or wildcard expression you require.

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Tattoo RFID

by on Jan.24, 2007, under Posts

Bill Ray reported on The Register in January 2007 that a Saint Louis company known as Somark Innovations has successfully tested a new kind of radio frequency identification (RFID) medium. An identification number can be stored in a tattoo that is injected from an array of needles onto animals such as cows, mice and rats.

The RFID’s number can then be read from more than a meter away using a proprietary high frequency reader.

Existing tags are either expensive or can be torn out from animals.

Somark’s next market after animals will be to identify military personnel, meaning the tattoo also works on humans.

Again as evidenced, the last days are truly here.

“And it puts under compulsion all persons, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free and the slaves, that they should give these a mark in their right hand or upon their forehead, and that nobody might be able to buy or sell except a person having the mark, the name of the wild beast or the number of its name. Here is where wisdom comes in: Let the one that has intelligence calculate the number of the wild beast, for it is a man’s number; and its number is six hundred and sixty-six.” – Revelation 13:16-18, New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures

Links:

The Register – Cattle branding comes to the 21st Century: High-tech tattoo more than a pretty picture
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/01/16/rfid_tattoo/>

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Movie Review: The Illusionist

by on Jan.23, 2007, under Posts

Set in the Victorian era and based on the Austrian royal monarchy, The Illusionist is a love story with a magical spine.

Eisenheim and Sophie are childhood romantics who meet much later in years in Vienna from when they were seperated. Eisenheim has since travelled much and learnt much magic. Sophie herself, being locked in high society, is destined to be married to the Crown Prince Leopold, who is a cunning and proud man.

When the young lovers meet once more, they desire to elope, despite the growing pressure to stop them from being together by the jealous Leopold and his power-hungry and relentless Chief Inspector Uhl.

Eisenheim prepares for his ultimate illusion which causes tongues to wag and heads to roll. Will the Inspector be able to expose him for his crowd-pulling tricks, or will the Crown Prince successfully destroy the lovers’ plans?

The Illusionist will be scrutinized as he attempts to shock his audience one last time.

Keeping in mind magic is about illusion, watch the movie with an open mind and I recommend not to spend effort trying to explain the tricks like what the Crown Prince did. Watch the details and the not-so-subtle one liners which make up for a highly-excusable ending.

Paul Giamatti who plays the Chief Inspector has impressed me with his ability to veer away from his trademark stuttering and introverted speech manner and delivered a credible performance as a stressed-out and suspicious investigator. The magician is played by Edward Norton, is not in unfamiliar acting requirements as he continues his stern and smirk countenance. True to the character though, but he did forgot his English accent in one line when Sophie in the horse carriage.

Edward Norton, Paul Giamatti and Jessica Biel star in this understated but adequately entertaining movie. I haven’t seen “the other magician movie” yet, but I think it should be better for my tastes.

Links:

IMDb – The Illusionist (2006)
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0443543/>

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