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Main > Diary

May 27, 2006

Genographic Update - Additional Testing Required

Off and on I've been checking the status of my submission of cheek-cells to the National Geographic Genographic Project. It's been a little over a couple of months that they've been processing my DNA. Well, last week my entry moved from the processing stage into quality control and something interesting happened. Here's the text from my record:

Additional Testing Required

Your sample has completed the DNA analysis phase of testing. However, during quality control your initial results failed to clearly indicate your haplogroup. We must perform additional testing to accurately determine your deep ancestral lineage. This is not uncommon, but will delay the posting of your results by two to three weeks.

We appreciate your patience. Please also note that this delay is a sign of the Project's success in increasing the diversity of samples in our database.

If we find that there is a problem at any point during the processing of your sample, you will receive an updated message when you log in to check your status.

What does this all mean?

My guess is that my lineage is so strange that they haven't encountered many of my type before. As a matter of fact, that's precisely why I wanted to spend the $100 to try and figure out what my paternal haplotype was in the first place!

I'm putting odds on one of a few outcomes:

  1. The family has been keeping to traditions and I can trace my haplotype through Israel.
  2. Someone got scandalous and I've either got North African or Spanish paternal DNA.
  3. The results will be inconclusive and will simply tell me that I'm human.
  4. I'm a new subspecies.

Oh the suspense! I'll keep you all updated...

Posted by jordanh at 1:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

My First Holgaroid, Evan

00216.jpg
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CameraHolgaroid 120GF
LensHolga Glass 60mm f/8
Shutter @ Aperture1/100s @ f/8
Film / ISOPolaroid Type 84 / 100 ISO

Evan and I went to Samy's Camera in Venice to try and scare up a new lens cap for my 28-200mm tameron which I lost someplace the night before. I saw a nice display of Holgas and inquired as to if they might have a Poloroid back available. The woman at the counter told me that since they had been discontinued they were becoming harder and harder to find.

A man leaned over to me and said under his breath, "you should call Freestyle camera in Hollywood, I was there yesterday and I saw they had a couple left, but you'd better hurry."

I spared no time and called them just as soon as we left Samy's. The saleswoman I reached strongly urged me to put my name on one. Evan and I showed up at Freestyle the following morning to pick it up.

When we arrived, a different saleswoman took it up to the cash register and remarked, "you know this is the last one, right? We are the only importer of these from Japan in the country and this is the last one, that's it, and you've got it."

She proceeded to open the packaging and showed me everything there was to know about the back. She remarked, "I've turned away at least three people this morning who wanted to buy one, I want to make sure you know how to use it before I hand it over to you."

When I reached my dad's house in Sherman Oaks Evan and I put the back on the camera and I had him pose in the sunlight for a picture.

My dad was highly skeptical of our purchase. After all, it had made us late for breakfast ("everything got ice cold!") but everything was put to rest when we passed this Holgaroid around. This photo is like a combination between my brother and The Unibomber taken by a first year art school photography student. I love it!

 

Posted by jordanh at 1:13 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 17, 2006

Hasedera Zen Garden

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CameraKonica Minolta MAXXUM 7D
Lens (35mm Equiv.)Minolta 24mm f/2.8 (36 mm)
Exp. Prog. / Shutter @ ApertureNormal Program / 1/60 s @ f/4
Metering w/Adj. @ ISOCenter weighted average w/0.00 eV @ 200

I wanted to sit down and really just work on one image tonight. I had to resort to resizing this one a little larger for presentation than usual. It just did not look right at any smaller size.

I wanted to take a photograph that I really wasn't happy with but one that I felt would be good to include on the photoblog for continuity and really post-process it the best I could for presentation. I wanted to give it balance. I wanted to give it focus. I wanted to give it interest.

This is one of the front gardens from Hasedera Temple in Kamakura, Japan. The gardens of Japan are so exquisite. Peaceful. Tranquil. Everything looks as if the universe made a mistake in not forming as it is to begin with. Everything in its natural state.

The peace of mind to be had in places like this is real and tangible. It permeates everything and refuses to be ignored. It is similar to the urge to be quiet when walking into a great cathedral, only carved out of nature and in the open.

 

Posted by jordanh at 12:38 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 14, 2006

Ira the Chihuahua

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CameraKonica Minolta MAXXUM 7D
Lens (35mm Equiv.)Tamron 90mm f/2.8 (135 mm)
Exp. Prog. / Shutter @ ApertureNormal Program / 1/125 s @ f/5
Metering w/Adj. @ ISOPattern w/0.00 eV @ 800

This is my friend Ira. He's coo. He's coo. He's my dawg, but not my dog. Down with that?

See more here and here.

 

Posted by jordanh at 12:00 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack |

Main > Diary > Development

May 13, 2006

Recollating MySQL, How I Broke the latin_swedish_ci Blues...

I got mad. When I get mad sometimes I write ruby. Tonight I wrote ruby.

A couple of weeks ago the server that hosts this site melted down. I replaced the box and migrated all of the data into a freshly compiled copy of MySQL. Everything seemed to work peachy until I noticed that all of my UTF-8 characters were coming out as questions marks. It's very annoying when you want to say ???????? and you get ????????. ????!

What was worse was seeing exacly how much work it was going to take to change the collation in all of the columns in all of the tables within all of the databases on my system. Bleh.

I wrote a script in Ruby to change all of the collations en masse for a particular database. This is useful for me because I really don't use any other collation other than utf8_bin, save for the odd column set to utf8_general_ci.

If you're interested in such progmatic solution, read on...

The below 100 lines took me about an hour to write, so be careful if you're running it on a production system. Take care to know if you need any other collations other than the TARGET_COLLATION defined in the top of the class.

#!/usr/bin/ruby18

require 'mysql'

class RecollateMysqlDatabase
  HOST = "localhost"
  USERNAME = "username"
  PASSWORD = "password"
  DATABASE = "mt_ablog"

  TARGET_CHARSET = "utf8"
  TARGET_COLLATION = "utf8_bin"

  def initialize
    @dbh = nil

    begin
      @dbh = Mysql.real_connect(HOST, USERNAME, PASSWORD, DATABASE)
      puts "Connected to MySQL Server Version" +
        @dbh.get_server_info
    rescue MysqlError => e
      mysql_exception_handler(e)
    end
  end

  def mysql_exception_handler(e)
      print "Error code: ", e.errno, "\n"
      print "Error message: ", e.error, "\n"

    begin @dbh.close rescue nil end

    exit 255
  end

  def recollate_tables(preview = true)

    puts "Fetching tables..." if preview

    # get a list of tables
    tables = @dbh.list_tables
    # A place to store our operations
    table_column_hash = Hash.new
    alter_table_query_list = [ ]

    # for each table get a list of columns:
    tables.each do |table|
      puts "Have table: #{table}" if preview
      res = @dbh.query("SHOW FULL COLUMNS FROM `#{table}`")
      while row_hash = res.fetch_hash do
          if row_hash["Collation"] != "NULL" and
            row_hash["Collation"] != TARGET_COLLATION
              column_hash = { "Field" => row_hash["Field"],
                              "Type" => row_hash["Type"] }
              table_column_hash[table] = [ ] if table_column_hash[table].nil?
              table_column_hash[table].push(column_hash)
          end
      end
      table_column_hash.each_key do |table|
        puts "\nIn #{table}, these columns need re-collating:\n" if preview
        table_column_hash[table].inject(false) do |comma,column_hash|
          printf "#{((comma) ? ", " : "\t")}" + column_hash["Field"] if preview
          comma = true
          alter_table_query_list.push <<-EOQ
            ALTER TABLE `#{table}` CHANGE `#{column_hash["Field"]}`
              `#{column_hash["Field"]}` #{column_hash["Type"]}
              CHARACTER SET #{TARGET_CHARSET}
              COLLATE `#{TARGET_COLLATION}`
            EOQ
        end
        printf ".\n" if preview
      end
      printf "\n" if preview
    end

    puts "-= PREVIEW OF SQL, NO CHANGES HAVE BEEN MADE =-" if preview
    alter_table_query_list.inject(0) do |i,query|
      puts query if preview
      if not preview
        printf "Executing query ##{i}...\r"
        STDOUT.flush
        begin
          @dbh.query(query)
        rescue MysqlError => e
          mysql_exception_handler(e)
        end
      end
      i += 1
    end
    printf "\n"
    puts "-= PREVIEW OF SQL, NO CHANGES HAVE BEEN MADE =-" if preview
  end
end

rmd = RecollateMysqlDatabase.new
rmd.recollate_tables(preview = true)

printf "Okay to proceed? (YES) -> "
response = STDIN.gets.chomp
if response != "YES"
  puts 'I need the answer "YES" in all caps to proceed! Exiting...'
  exit 1
end

rmd.recollate_tables(preview = false)
puts "Done!"
exit 0

Instructions: modify the top of the class connect with the username and password for the host and database you are interested in recollating. Run the script and if you are satisfied that the ALTER TABLE queries look sane, answer YES to let the script do the work.

Good luck!

Posted by jordanh at 1:32 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 12, 2006

Beauty Out of Muck

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CameraKonica Minolta MAXXUM 7D
Lens (35mm Equiv.)Sigma 100-300mm f/4-5.6 @ 130 mm (195 mm)
Exp. Prog. / Shutter @ ApertureNormal Program / 1/80 s @ f/4.5
Metering w/Adj. @ ISOPattern w/0.00 eV @ 200

A lotus from one of the front gardens of Hasedera Temple (???) in Kamakura, Japan. Normally I'm not one much for flower photographs but I was really taken by seeing this lotus about to bloom considering I was in a temple.

The symbol of the lotus is used by many people for many things but one of my favorite usages is as a metaphor for the Buddha. As it goes, how can something so beautiful rise from the muck and mire of human suffering?

 

Posted by jordanh at 11:12 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 9, 2006

Inside the Great Buddha

00212.jpg
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CameraKonica Minolta MAXXUM 7D
Lens (35mm Equiv.)Minolta 24mm f/2.8 (36 mm)
Exp. Prog. / Shutter @ ApertureNormal Program / 1/50 s @ f/3.5
Metering w/Adj. @ ISOPattern w/0.00 eV @ 3200

A continuation from Wednesday. This is the inside of the Great Buddha. Here I was leaning against his back, shooting upwards into his head. You can see his ear and the many places where his tight curls emerge from his head. All this for about twenty cents!

I remember a time about three years ago when I came to visit with my friend Jesse. A group of six or seven Japanese high school girls were in here trying to get a photo. When we were spotted, a number of them were trying to figure out how to ask us if we would take their picture. When my friend told them in Japanese that he understood what they were saying and that they wouldn't need to work out the English. He also told them that he would help them. Before he could finish they began to scream and I'll never forget their horrible shrill sound reverberating off of the insides of the silent Buddha. What finally quieted them down was a quick, "shh, shut up!" as he reached for their camera.

 

Posted by jordanh at 12:00 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 8, 2006

Loss of Emphasis - Two

00211.jpg
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CameraHolgaroid 120GF
LensHolga Glass 60mm f/8
Shutter @ Aperture1/100s @ f/8
Film / ISOPolaroid Type 84 / 100 ISO

Normally during the week I don't like to divert away from the travel photos but I fell as though I don't want to break apart this second in a pair of Holgaroid photos.

I actually took this photo first and wasn't satisifed how it was so weighted on the right hand side of the frame (it's hard to frame things up when you don't have a viewfinder!) but the more I looked at it, the more I grew to like it. Perhaps you'll feel the same way. That, and I think it makes an excellent companion to yesterday's shot.

 

Posted by jordanh at 11:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 7, 2006

Loss of Emphasis - One

00210.jpg
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CameraHolgaroid 120GF
LensHolga Glass 60mm f/8
Shutter @ Aperture1/100s @ f/8
Film / ISOPolaroid Type 84 / 100 ISO

Down a lonesome dirt road about 45 minutes outside of Lancaster, California we found this structure across from a newly plowed and irrigated field. It was obvious that this structure hadn't been in practical use for sometime. The windows of the building were all smashed in, probably the work of some local kids and a pellet rifle.

A little further to the right there power lines ended but little ranch houses continued. Wind turbines turned to keep these homes going off the grid.

 

Posted by jordanh at 1:04 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 3, 2006

The Kamakura Daibutsu

00209.jpg
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CameraKonica Minolta MAXXUM 7D
Lens (35mm Equiv.)Minolta 24mm f/2.8 (Unknown)
Exp. Prog. / Shutter @ ApertureNormal Program / 1/250 s @ f/7.1
Metering w/Adj. @ ISOPattern w/0.00 eV @ 100

We went to go and see the Kamakura Daibutsu. It was my second or third time to go and visit him, but it was a lot of fun to share him with my brother. I still remember my brother exclaiming, "...and there he is!" as we walked up the path and rounded the corner to where he becomes visible.

 

Posted by jordanh at 11:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack |

Main > Photoblog

May 1, 2006

Manual Purification

00208.jpg
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CameraKonica Minolta MAXXUM 7D
Lens (35mm Equiv.)Minolta 50mm f/1.4 (75 mm)
Exp. Prog. / Shutter @ ApertureNormal Program / 1/800 s @ f/2.8
Metering w/Adj. @ ISOPattern w/0.00 eV @ 100

From visiting dear Ozu-san, we performed the Kamakura traditional visit to the Daibutsu. Here my brother purifies his hands, never flinching to take off the iPod. He wasn't alone. We truly have become a society of people devoting continuously partial attention to everything.

 

Posted by jordanh at 9:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack |