All posts by michiel

Website update

The last couple of weeks I have been working hard updating my website www.vanderblonk.com. It's been fun, but I'm hardly ready, there is so much more to do. Let me give you a little breakdown of what has been done and what you can expect in the (near) future:

  • There is a new home page
  • The applet has already been greatly improved, e.g. you can now enter any parameters of the applet in the url.
  • I placed google ads. I know not everyone likes ads, but I think everyone mature enough in our field (speedcubing, programming) knows how to disable them. I get a lot of juice from wikipedia of which I am grateful.

And soon:

  • I will make some help text available for all the new awesome options (which I am not revealing yet)
  • Not very useful to you, but I will integrate the style of the home page in all of my pages, it's still a collection of pages, and not a real site this way. Let me know if you like it.

Average number of moves

I never measured my number of moves to solve a cube. In this attempt, I solved each cube in about 30s.
These are the results:

48,42,48,56,44,47,41,49,52,48,45,51

Average (10/12): 47.4

I use CFOP and the fact that the average is below fifty comes from a smart F2L mostly. I don't know advanced OLL or PLL. The F2L was usually done in 30 moves or less.

Your own label maker

Google label maker is a game for speed freaks who like to compete. Hey, that's us, speedcubers! Anyway, I advise you all to go there and try it out.

The aim of the game is to match the tags that you assign to a random image, together with your game partner. This is a nice way of google to get everyone who is crazy enough to play this game (us) to categorize their enormous image database. So in fact we're all working for Google here.

Unfortunately you can't see who you were racing with, only their nickname is shown. Getting into the highscore just requires a lot of stamina since the score is simply accumulated after each game.

update: my high sore is 10, see if you can beat it.

Sub 19!

Yes, that's right, sub 19! 18.97 to be exact. But still. It was an insane average, where I did a couple of times in the 17, more 18's. I'll give an update with the exact times soon.

I am very excited about this, but I'd prefer to have an all-sub-20 average soon.

This great record was set in the morning, after a very good nights sleep, that seems to be very important for my times.

Impression of WC2005

Well, I am back at home, and let me tell you about all the good, the bad and the ugly experiences (yes Gaetan, this is a pun).

The bad

Let's start with the bad for a change. There I was, standing on the stage, ready to blow everyone away with my sub 20, and then it happened: total blackout. My thoughts got sucked into another dimension and I stared at the cube for what appeared to be ages, but was in fact just a couple of (precious) seconds.

Result: a miserable 25 seconds. The other two solves had the same disease and resulted in 30 and 40 seconds. My average was not better than 20 years ago.

The good

The good things happened afterwards. I must say I loved seeing everyone: Dan, Jasmine, Dan, Macky (didn't get past security and media though to talk to him), Brent, Ron, Ton, Peter, Lars, Lars. Joël, it was great meeting you finally.

I also loooooved the races that were going on ubiquitously, is that a word? The most fun was that one race table with Yuki, Jon and Doug Reed. They were all so much faster than me, that I was pushed to the upperlower limits of my cubing career. I did several 20's, some 19's, some 18's, 1 or two 17's and one 16. And on top of that I broke my avg and set a new 21.335, the old one was 22.

The ugly

This wasn't cube related though. The first day I thought let's drink lots of water, so I bought a bottle and put it in my bag. The opening mechanism was somewhat like my old popping cube, so it ended up being open inside my bag, thereby destroying not only all the algorithms I had collected for this trip but also my digital camera!!!

If that wasn't enough on the way back, right when I was about to check in for my flight I found out my wallet was missing. Stolen or lost, I couldn't say.


update: it appears to have become the good, the bad, the ugly part II, Hollywood ending: Mickey Mouse found my wallet and returned it by FedEx!! Thank you Mickey!

Made the front page

First let me tell you about ning. Ning is a new application invented by the guy who brought us Netscape. Now I know that Netscape was generally a bad boy browser, who knew nothing about standards and following rules, but still this Marc Andreessen guy cashed out pretty good...

Anyway, Ning is a playground for developers where you can create, copy and share applications in a snap. Some templates for most used 'social' apps are ready made and can be instantly transformed to something that looks like you made it yourself.

So I copied the 'bookmarks' app and created my own take on it: alglist.ning.com. Go have a look. You can do lots of nice stuff with it. You can tag your favourite algorithms or add other people's algs to your collection.

I don't know where I will go with this app. Adding functionality is not as easy as creating the app :-(. One feature I'd like to add is the video link. Another might be the image display of the cube.

I still believe the community is shattered: look at all those nice F2L/OLL/PLL show-off pages, where actually not much new is found besides algorithms. C'mon guys, share it!!!!

Update: Ning downgraded themselves to a general-public-social-network and the features we all used to love are not there anymore. Sorry!