Content-Security-Policy: frame-ancestors 'self' X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN Steve Larsen


Insanely Cheap AWS Cluster Computing Running SUSE

I've been spending a bit of time recently playing around with the AWS offerings primarily around the EC2 and S3 offerings.

Running CC2 as an on demand instance type you're going to pay $2.40 for the right to use the 32 core system for just 1 hour. However, if you're able to create your application in a way that takes advantage of AWS Spot Instance running on a SUSE Linux distro, you can run the same application for as low as $0.0001 per hour (yes 1/100 of a penny) quite regularly. Over the course of the last week you would have paid only as much as $0.10 per hour with most of the usage coming in at nearly free.

I'm sure you can find more instances being offered at such a low cost. This was just one example of a very expensive instance being offered essentially for free.

Of course, you've got to be careful with spot instances, they can be terminated at any time. You'll find these work best when application state and results are stored perhaps in a dedicated instance. Some great candidates for spot instances may include idempotent operations and reproducible or parallelisable work. You can see that running a CI server would be well suited for this work. You don't really care if the instance shuts off unexpectedly, it can resume later and produce your build/test result successfully at a later time. Processing work for the likes of the good 'ol SETI project would also be a great use case.

Happy cloud computing!


Watching 4oD Without The Adverts, Almost - Part 2 with Video

It's been a while since I've had this method working and I thought it was of course time to let everyone else know. I'll jump right to it and keep this one brief.

Here's how you can watch 4oD with no adverts, ads, advertising, pre-roll or what ever you want to call them, almost...

So the catch is that you'll probably just have to watch one.

Make sure to have your favourite ad blocking software installed and then just allow the first ad to load before enabling it again. Here's a video (1m 38s) that shows you the process and results.

If the article and/or video helped you, please click on the Amazon link here before you do your shopping this holiday season.

Amazon Christmas Deals

Or treat yourself to a free £10 at Uber

You'll want to view full screen to see it.


BBC iPlayer Desktop | How to Download Films or anything else

It's the end of the year and all the kids are at home with not much to do every day. During the holiday period and also typically at half-term time, the BBC is really good at packing on the films (56 at last count for xmas 2012) and especially for the kids. You all may know that the the iPlayer Desktop gives you the added benefit of watching a show later on or in cases where you might not have a broadband connection steady enough to stream without too much buffering. When it comes to films though you're almost never able to do this. There is a very easy way to do this actually. It doesn't take much so if you're interested to know how leave a comment below and I'll follow up with a very nice HOW TO.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year


Asics Gel Trabuco 14 | Out with the old, In with the new, Shoe Review

It's just approaching 6 years now that I've been living over in the UK and it's been not much less time since I've had a new pair of running shoes. Sufficed to say it was time for an upgrade.

Left: New Asics, Right: Old Saucony
My last pair was bought online without having first tried them on in the store and I've had a bit of trouble with them with blisters during any runs longer than about 4km. I had always thought that was due to my extended breaks between runs but realised that it was actually the shoe. Despite my own admission to the fact that ordering online can be a bit hit or miss I've done it again, but to much better results. If you're not as optimistic as me, get yourself over to the specialist running shops where they might have a treadmill to try out a pair first. (Then cheekily order them online where they'll usually be cheaper)

I was lucky enough to have taken delivery of a new pair of trail running shoes that Sports Direct had kindly sent me to review. I opened the box to reveal a surprisingly handsome pair of shoes the Asics Gel Trabuco 14. I suspect some of you might not be too keen on the colour, but for me, I like my shoes to stand out from the crowd a bit.

I put them to the test with a half hour wet trail run, I felt like I was running on a cloud. Notably, running downhill, they absorbed the full force of impact and gripped the terrain impeccably. I was very impressed and busting to get out there again and put them to the test some more.

This is the latest release of this model of shoe. Personally, I've not had the opportunity to compare previous models with. However, I've found some mixed opinion out there with this latest version saying that it's less of a true, hard-core trail shoe, a bit wider than normal and that the lacing system is completely different without the normal second usuable hole to butterfly lace your shoe to help hold your foot and ankle in place. I can attest to the latter criticism myself as when I went running through some wet muddy ground in my last run the shoe got a bit stuck and my foot almost came out of the shoe.

ASICS Men's Gel Trabuco 14
Asics Gel Trabuco 14

A long-standing favourite of trail runners, GEL-TRABUCO 14 is the most performance-oriented edition yet. The rugged outsole offers excellent trail traction combined with a comfortable feel. The Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL Cushioning System that eases the shock experienced during the impact and toe-off phases, while the Solyte Midsole Material, a lighter compound than ASICS’ standard EVA and SpEVA, not only reduces weight but also enhances cushioning and durability. Also helping to reduce weight of the sole unit is the Trusstic System with no loss of structural integrity. A Trail Specific Outsole features reversed lugs for excellent uphill and downhill traction on all types of terrain, while ASICS High Abrasion Resistant rubber placed in critical areas of the outsole provides exceptional durability. In the midsole area, the dual density Duomax Support System enhances support and stability. A Rock Protection Plate helps to protect against stone bruises.

- Mens trail running shoes 
- Lace-up 
- Padded ankle collar 
- Breathable mesh upper 
- Solyte midsole 
- Rearfoot Gel Cushioning 
- AHAR+ (Asics High Abrasion Rubber) outsole 
- Asics logo 
- Synthetic/Mesh upper, Textile inner, Synthetic sole