Downtime: Business Card Menger Sponge Mini-Project

Everybody’s got to have something to do in the office during the downtime. Whether you’re waiting for a build, rebooting your machine or just avoiding eyestrain after 4 hours staring at code.

Somehow, I ended up using my downtime to fold up old business cards to build a level 2 Menger Sponge… as inspired by Dr. Jeannine Mosely who explains it better than I can. Unfortunately, my cards are not the right size to contribute to Jeannine’s brave attempt at a level 3 sponge, which she calculates will measure slightly over 54 inches (140 cm) on each side and weigh about 150 pounds (70 kg)!

It’s taking me an awfully long time to do. Getting your hands on 2400 business cards that people no longer want is hard enough, but it turns out that every company in the world seems to have it’s own preferred dimensions for business cards. Definitely a candidate for EU standardisation there…

Here’s some (blurry) photos of my sponge, from conception through to today:

A startLevel OneMaking a start at level 2Half way thereLatest

Once it’s finished, maybe it’ll look rather nice with a lamp placed in the middle?

BUG: C2248 on assignment in member function of a private nested class

I recently stumbled across a bug in the Microsoft Visual C++ 6.0 compiler. There doesn't seem to be a Knowledge Base article on this particular bug (Knowledge Base search results for C2248 error) but I did discover a workaround so thought I'd share it here in the hope that it may be helpful to others.

Please use the right content-type for your Ajax

This is a plea for all Ajax developers to carefully consider the MIME Type of all those little snippets of data that are served up for processing by your javascript. If you use an inappropriate Content-Type in your HTTP response, you may find that your carefully crafted applications break when used from mobile phones, or for dial-up users trying to boost their bandwidth using a "web accelerator".

Sure, it's not likely to happen, but it could happen to you. So it probably will. Here I explain the problem to be aware of, and a simple solution to ensure your applications don't succumb to it.