Beautiful Code

In the mid 1990’s I was shown a snippet of C source code which remains what I consider to be the most beautiful code I have ever seen. The code was introduced to me as:

It’s a devastatingly deviously unrolled byte-copying loop, devised by Tom Duff while he was at Lucasfilm. In it’s “classic” form, it looks like:

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Unit Pricing for Batteries

Unit pricing in the grocery stores helps consumers to choose value when comparing products on the shelf. This is particularly useful for comparing products on sale. Unfortunately unit pricing does not help when comparing batteries.

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It’s a “Laser”

I plan on building an interchangable head for the desktop CNC. One head with a spindle for drilling and milling and another with a laser for laser cutting thin wood, paper, card, and plastics.

The laser arrived yesterday from Laserlands. Safety first, I also bought suitable safety goggles. It is a 800 mW 808 nm infra-red laser with focusable lens and TTL on-off control. The same laser is used in a ShapeOko upgrade for laser cutting.

I haven’t tested the laser yet. Waiting for my 12V power supply to arrive.

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More Parts…

Received the last of the parts ordered from OpenLab today. They supplied the v-wheels, smooth idlers, eccentric spacers, pulleys, stepper motors, limit switches, and timing belt.

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Vehicle Keyless Entry Theft

A new pattern of vehicle theft has appeared in the U.S.A. Thieves are unlocking the car using the no-touch keyless entry system. Thieves walk up to the passenger door of the target vehicle which then unlocks. The thief enters and drives away.

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Desktop CNC

I have started a project to build a 3-axis desktop CNC machine. It started with grbl on an Arduino UNO to drive a couple of CD-ROM drive stages. The goal was to create a business card sized laser cutter. Then I discovered the ShapeOko website and the project grew.

So far I have Grbl running on the Arduino with grblShield to drive the stepper motors. Laser cut profiles are back from the laser cutters and most of the hardware has arrived. Construction will start soon.

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Pictures from a recent trip to Perth.

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Alexander’s Icy Pole

Alexander is taking his time learning exactly how to deal with solid food. In contrast he took no time at all figuring out what to do with an icy-pole.

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Christmas 2005

It’s true what they say, for young children the present is only a carrier for the real toy… the wrapping and the boxes. They really are fun. Lots of fun was had by all for Alexander’s first Christmas. Alexander enjoyed himself so much that he forgot to sleep.

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