Tuesday
Mar112014

Consolas vs Luculent  

A new challenger in the coding font wars appears; Luculent. (See this discussion on HackerNews for more fun).

For the record, I still think Consolas is not only a great-looking coding font, but is also the best-engineered one in existence. Having said, that Luculent is charming and quirky and cool. It's at least worth a try on your dev box.

Let's explore some specific sizes. All screenshots below were done with text in Notepad on Windows 8.1. The source code come from here.

Luculent 11pt

 

Snap00214

 

Luculent 10 point

Snap00215

 

Luculent 9pt

Snap00216

 

Luculent 8pt

Snap00217

 

Luculent 7pt

Snap00218

Now some if the problems become obvious.

Consolas 7pt

I Look Consolas it handles the same text at 7 pt below.

Snap00219

Comparison

A PDF with detailed comparisons is available here: http://1drv.ms/1cM24Wh

Snap00220

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday
Mar062014

Arial vs Clear Sans

This is Clear Sans - released in late 2013 by the Intel Open Source Technology Center Overal. It looks like a slightly more contemporary, humanist version of Arial. Overall, we can't see too much to get excited over. Do note that it comes with a very thin variant that Arial lacks.

Snap00258

 

PDF of the comparison is here: http://1drv.ms/1czPMjE

Glyph comparisons (Arial in blue, Clear Sans in red)

Snap00261Snap00262Snap00263

Snap00264Snap00265Snap00266

Snap00267

 

Thursday
Mar062014

Content-Adaptive Image Downscaling from Microsoft Research  

Recently revived on a reddit discussion, it's good to see that we can still do better at image downsampling –  an often neglected responsibility –  to which the ubiquity of bad thumbnail images on the web can attest.

Link to paper: http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/people/kopf/downscaling/

Some samples from the paper:

 

Snap00256

 

Snap00257

 

 

 

 

Saturday
Jan182014

Generating Auto-Incremented Version numbers with PowerShell

The code snippet below is something I had to write to simplify some build & deployment. Instead of me having to remember the latest version number to use, this PowerShell snippet lets me store the current version number as a Major.Minor.Patch (for example 1.2.3) one-line text file. The script updates the version number every time it is run.

Some techniques demonstrated:

  • Simple reading and writing of strings with Text files
  • Converting Strings to Integers and back
  • Splitting a string

 

Write-Host Calculate new version number

$curverfilename= "d:\curver.txt"

$curver = Get-Content $curverfilename | Out-String

Write-Host Current Version $curver

$tokens = $curver.Split(".")

$major = [int]( $tokens[0])

$minor = [int]( $tokens[1])

$patch = [int]( $tokens[2])

$new_patch = $patch + 1

$Version = ([string] $major)+"."+ ([string] $minor ) +"." + ([string]$new_patch)

Write-Host $Version

$Version | Out-File $curverfilename

Wednesday
Jan012014

Interlude: Swan Lake through Zeno Music Visualizer

Let’s start 2014 with something inspiring.

Swan Lake - Zeno Music Visualiser from Glenn Marshall on Vimeo.