Archive for March, 2005

Shameless Plug for Flourish Excel

March 26th, 2005

Hi All,
As you may or may not know, I have an aquarium which is one of my hobbies (along with audio/music). About 2 months ago I decided to take the plunge and plant my tank with live plants. Now, for you readers who don’t know the first thing about planting tanks, there are entire sites dedicated to planted tanks and the nuances involved. One of these nuances is controlling algae. As I read two of the main things one must do is limit phosphates & increase CO2. Well, I sort-of had a double whammy going for me. Before I really started thinking about planting my tank I was using a phosphate based chemical to ‘set’ my pH to 7 and when I decided to plant my tank I decided I didn’t want to get that crazy and add CO2 injection. You can see my problem starting…

Within a couple weeks after adding my new shiny plants (carrying all their algae from the pet store) under a fairly high amount of light (3 wpg) I started growing some really fine black beard algae. One word about bba (black beard algae), it’s nasty nasty stuff. It’s impossible to remove by hand because it sticks to plant leaves and only a couple algae eating fish eat it. I did some investigation and went down to my local pet shop and picked up a couple Rosy Barbs, which I read actually ate the stuff. Sure enough, they started going to town, but there was just too much for them to get ahead of so plan b was in order.

Reading various forums a chemical kept coming up, Flourish Excel. This is a liquid fertilizer that contains organic carbon, which as stated above, helps plants grow but the very cool thing is it happens to kill certain types of algae, namely bba. I thought, what the heck, it sounds too good to be true. I ordered a bottle and waited. When it came, last friday, I started dosing as directed and within 2 days the bba started turning pink (which means it was dying). I read that you had to overdose to actually kill off the algae, however the dosage varied by who was posting. I thought, hum, who’s directions should I follow, so I picked the least amount mentioned. The last week I’ve been dosing 2x the recommended amount every other day and the recommended amount the day off. The result, in exactly one week, all the bba is gone! I am more than impressed! Also, my Drawf Wendtii’s are growing like crazy, all have 3-4 new leaves. With these results it’s hard not to recommend this product as normal fertilizer, yet alone an algae controller.

I know this post is pretty geeky, but hopefully someone with an algae problem will find it and learn something from it. 🙂

Cheers, will
music: moby : hotel

# posted at 4:51 am by Will

Nvu all that?

March 17th, 2005

Howdy all,
I was recently checking out the blogs and there was a lot chatter about high profile (positive) reviews of the community’s WYSIWYG html editor, Nvu. Now it might actually work decently on the PC, but on the Mac it flat out stinks. It’s slow, the UI is a complete mess (the whole “UI as XML” has never worked well on the Mac) and most importantly, it’s completely un-mac-like. Why the disparity? Is it that they don’t have any good Mac coders or Mac designers? Is it that they don’t care about the Mac? Who knows, but I find it very tiresome that a high profile OS project like Mozilla has such a hard time coming up with a Mac product that doesn’t suck.

Now I know you’re saying, ‘you code, you can fix it if you think it sucks so bad.’ Well, the sad fact is, employers very much frown on people working on OS because of the dreaded GPL license. This basically eliminates 90%+ of Mac coders who could actually make a difference. So we’re stuck with what we have today. A project with few developers, has a very slow development time, and a generally poor user experience on the Mac, sigh. That’s not to say this problem is strictly related to Mozilla, but I think it exists with the vast majority of OS projects on the Mac, and perhaps with OS projects in general. Until someone can come up with a great way to make the almighty dollar while working on OS code, I’m afraid this will always be the case.

cheers, will
music: tori amos | the beekeeper

# posted at 4:13 am by Will