How to copy (and relink) binaries on OSX using otool and install_name_tool

So, occasionally as a web developer you might be called upon to do some weird things. I don’t mean dress up as a marmoset for some strange European film studio, but more in the vein of working with binary files on OS X and trying to copy them to a different machine as part of your pseudo web app. Sometimes web development is just full of the crazy awesome in that way.

This also serves as a bit of friendly help from past!me to future!me – I hope this solves my problem again!

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My rants: September Edition

This is a short summary of any rants I’ve had over the last month, that I’d also promised to record.

Secret Garden Party 2010: Too much fun for 140 characters

I decided to go to the Secret Garden Party at practically no notice, after hearing about it being a random festival of fun and insanity. But I grossly underestimated how much crazy hijinks were on offer. So here’s a short list1 of what I did at the Secret Garden Party this weekend:

  • Wandered around a festival with friends old and new
  • Danced to more sub-genres of music than I can count
  • Swam in a lake
  • Missed every single headliner
  • Slid down a helter skelter
  • Had my feet eaten by fish
  • Walked, ran, danced and pretend tightroped across a wibbly wobbly bridge
  • Found the conceptual end of the festival
  • Wrote stories to get free G&T
  • Saw a gorilla and banana get married
  • Got a tan
  • Listened to a talk on prime numbers and football
  • Failed to hula hoop
  • Watched an impromptu limbo competition happen down at the front stage
  • Only got bored twice in the entire festival
  • Drank a *lot* of cider
  • Saw a theremin playing space robot
  • Held a stick insect
  • Went on a ferris wheel
  • Had breakfast in bed
  • Was electrocuted by cucumbers
  • Took juggling lessons
  • Played scouts games
  • Swung on a mystic swing
  • Accidentally found fish (or were they umbrellas?) (or umbrella fish?)
  • Attended a fairly scientific talk on lucid dreaming
  • Saw a beat-boxing competition so good I forgot there was only voices
  • Danced more in the space of 24 hours than in the previous 24 months
  • Was touched by the tree of lost things
  • Saw a haphazard film crew re-enacting of Robin Hood Prince of Thieves
  • Danced on a floating boat club
  • Watched it burn in flames

The list of things I missed or forgot to do or didn’t know were happening until after the fact is at least as large.

Roll on Secret Garden Party 2011.

  1. It might be short, but it’s still too much for twitter or Facebook to handle! []

BarCampBrighton3: Social Media Pecha Kucha

These are all the links that came up during the presentation. Thanks to everyone for joining in; apologies for the insanely buggy application [last minute bugs are a killer! 🙁 ]

BarCamp NorthEast :
Creative Brighton Debate :
Sussex Geek Dinner :
Farm – Web Freelancers Networking :
School Assembly :
loch_lomond :
mark s waiting for food.jpg :
table at due south.jpg :
10/04/2008 :
hut :
Endorphin – Free :
Howard Shore – The Black Gate is Closed :
Pete Namlook & Geir Jenssen – Sky Lounge :
cachecard.html :
Macworld | Mac Word | Opening up the Intel Mac mini :
Beastie Boys – Sure Shot :
Guns N’ Roses – Dust ‘n’ Bones :
Install multiple versions of IE on your PC :
Senior UI Consultant- London- £45K PLUS!! – :
Front End Developer – HTML, css – JobSearch :
Wait till I come! » Blog Archive » Five things to do to a script before handing it over to the next developer :
Download Now :
Ditz : {web} » Using Phing to automate JavaScript and CSS Minimization :
Working with PHP 5 in Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) – Professional PHP :
Python-by-example :
ARC: ARC – RDF and SPARQL for PHP developers :
Dopplr Raumzeitgeist 2007 by dopplr Fine Art Prints and Posters :
Extenuating Circumstances – SXSW: The Web That Wasn’t :
San Diego Web Standards Group :
UIE 2008 | Links from Andrew DeVigal’s Presentation :
Twitter / Greg: @stefsull – ok. for the res… : | Veterans Report Mental Distress :
mr hermano – Tambora :
Bill Evans – Some Other Time :
mr hermano – Tambora :
Nick Drake – Road : | Veterans Report Mental Distress :
this is a test :
website :
this is a test :
website :
Jacques Loussier Trio – Gymnopedie No 1 / Var.2 :
Scuba – Harpoon :
Adriana Calcanhotto – Lig-lig-lig-lé :
Paulo Flores – E Doce Morrer No Mar :
Jimi Hendrix – Red House :
The Deleted Scenes: F**k Travelodge, f**k them right in the ear… :
Faces of the Fallen: Iraq and Afghanistan Casualties | :
weird yahoo answers language thing :
“your grandson is really important” :
Ian Forrester on “Techhub” :
Looks Good Works Well: Announcing: Jiffy Firebug Extension for Viewing Client Side Performance Data :
GoateeSaver ::: Real Men Wear Goatees :
ROXIK | Physics :
Free Events In London – What’s On In London :
ROXIK | Physics :
Color Whore :
antipixel :
Daring Fireball :
hicksdesign :
mindgarden :
Rails Form Helpers Cheat Sheet :
280slides online slide editing and presentation :
RubyForge :
A Designer’s Guide to HTML Email :
Magical Microformat Maker :
White Mischief “Around The World In 80 Days” – one night indoor festival with Oojami, Ebony Bones, 7 bands, 7 vaudeville acts, 7 DJs, 7 hours of madness :
From computers to ubiquitous computing, by 2020 : BBQ on Rooftop Terrace :
Radiohead :
FlashBrighton: Code-along-Genetic-Algorithm :
Tantek, sleeping :
During the break :
Brian :
Pinxto people :
Sophie and Trammell :
Thriving Office :
Geeks Love Bowling : – Merlin Mann – Worst Website Ever – SXSW 2008 – Uploaded by rooreynolds :
4 Technologies for Portability in Social Networks: A Primer – ReadWriteWeb :
We Tell Stories :
Pimp Trammell :
The geeks gather :
Ocean :
Choosing a spot :
Noodles :
Coding Conventions – Flex SDK – Confluence :
Scott Fegette: Silverback – Guerrilla Usability Testing :
Method for classifying and searching video databases based on 3-D camera motion – Patent 6748158 :
Show Us a Better Way :
Handpresso – Produits – Wild :
Main Page – Ubuntu Eee :
Internet Memes :
cachecard.html :
Method for classifying and searching video databases based on 3-D camera motion – Patent 6748158 :
hachoir-metadata – Hachoir – Trac :
IMG_1264.JPG :
IMG_1448.JPG :
An Evening With William Gibson :
Bay Area Maker Faire 2008 :
San Francisco Urban Iditarod 2007 :
Charles Mudede on The Stranger, Police Beat, Zoo and Desire :
Create a Winning Tagline :
Web2Open (day 1) :
Where 2.0 2008 :
Nick turns 22: Sausage party! :
John Williams – Desert Chase :

360Flex:Milan – The Good Bits

Oh yeah, things I liked.

  • USB key – much better idea for handing out presentations and sponsor pamphlets than anything else I’ve seen. I’d love to see this managed via a plug-in/pull-out uber-lightweight terminal, so that Tom and John don’t have to spend all their bar time, slowly updating USB keys
  • Michael LabriolaDense and Hot – An Introduction to Your Application’s Start Up – this was the sort of detailed examination I was expecting from 360Flex. I would have liked it to have gotten even denser 🙂
  • Dan ThomasDeveloper Best Practices – I liked how this effectively turned into a conversation with all the attendees in the room. I tend to see sessions less as lectures and more as severely one sided conversations, so it was good to be able to converse back and forth with various people their points of view.
  • Finally, Milan, whilst not being to my taste (I care not for fashion), is remarkably centrally located for pretty much all of Europe – less than 3 hours to most of Europe.  While I’d prefer the Eurostar, I don’t think it quite stretches out to Romania.

360Flex:Milan – A Critical Review

Firstly, I should note that I believe in the 360Flex concept. I flew all the way to San Jose to attend the first one, and even purchased replacement plane ticket when the first one went wrong due to booking complications. I was the first person to buy a ticket for 360Flex:Milan, before the tickets were even publicised. Also, I can see the need for a purely technical conference in contrast to more designer focused conferences. And finally, I can only commend their complete and utter transparency towards all aspects of their business including traditionally taboo subjects such as money.

Secondly, I should note that there are two factors that were completely outside the control of the 360 Conferences team:

  • OnAirTour conflicts – It is really unfortunate that Adobe scheduled the Brussels and London legs of the OnAirTour when 360Flex was in Milan, and the Milan leg for several months later. This is in complete contrast to the way Adobe arranged the USA OnAirTour which coincided the Atlanta leg of the tour not only with 360Flex but also with the Flex 3/Air 1 release date.
  • Heathrow Terminal 5 – Even British Airways and BAA didn’t expect the complete shambles that was the Terminal 5 launch. John Wilker mentioned that they were expecting merchandise, such as session posters that have been lost within the disaster that is the baggage system of Terminal 5 – up to 15 000 bags have been misplaced so far.

However, with those mitigating factors out of the way, in my opinion 360Flex:Milan was a failure. Financially by their own figures revealed in the keynote, they lost about EUR 9 400 (EUR 15 900 with refunds issued for the first day). As far as the conference itself went, I don’t think it worked either – and it certainly did not meet the high standards already set by previous 360Flex incarnations.

There were minor problems with things such as Internet access, buffet food or even bottomless coffee, but you can always have those sorts of problems with any organised event. Specifically, as far as the conference went I feel there are three main areas where Milan did not match up to previous conferences: speakers, attendees, and less importantly, added-extras.

  • Speakers: Previous editions of 360Flex had a breadth and depth of world class speakers, talking on topics from complete entry level to extremely advanced. 360Flex:San Jose in particular benefited from being near the head quarters of EBay, Google and of course Adobe, but even the other US based variants were able to leverage a good cross section of speakers. 360Flex:Milan on the other hand had very few advanced sessions and a plethora of introductory ones.
  • Attendees: The attendees that did turn up were good value. It was good to see people from all over Europe – I met people from Croatia, Romania, Italy and Switzerland – however there simply weren’t enough of them. By my rough count, there were only about 100 people at the keynote on the first day. While this did make the conference more intimate it also dramatically reduced the critical mass for cross pollination of ideas and networking opportunities.
  • Extras: Finally, one of the things 360Flex has become known for are its added extras. For example, at Seattle, there was an internal video system, FlexTV, rebroadcasting sessions from throughout the day and at Atlanta, they gave away free training and copies of The Cluetrain Manifesto. Milan didn’t have any of those sorts of extras – sure, they made the first day free but I have to say that this really felt like a last minute attempt to boost numbers, and it did not have any direct benefit to existing attendees.

These three issues, in my opinion, boil down to problems with speakers and advertising. Speakers directly drive attendee numbers – attendees go to conferences to see speakers’ sessions. Attendees know about the conferences via some form of advertising, whether grass-root or more traditional. And of course, with enough paying attendees there hopefully can be enough of a profit to be able to have nice-to-have added extras.

On the final day of 360Flex, I noticed the large amount of Twitts from world touring UK based speakers attending the OnAirTour event in London. Why didn’t these people attend at least the first 2 days of 360Flex?

In a similar vein, why did I not hear any official mention of 360Flex:Milan at either the London Flash Platform or Flex London user groups? The London Flash Platform group has attendances between 50 and 100 people every month. The Flex London user group has 428 people signed up for the group, a good proportion of whom are UK based. Where were these people?

I can only assume that the decision to only partially compensate speakers for their expenses meant many European speakers were unable to attend. I personally know of one speaker who decided to dramatically cut down on speaking engagements and concentrate on direct paid work, due to the amount they were out of pocket through speaking at conferences around the world – I fund all of my conference attendance directly out of my own pocket, so I can complete appreciate their position. And as far as US based speakers go, at least one of the scheduled ones was unable to attend, simply because his company just didn’t do business in Europe.

I can also only assume that 360Flex:Milan was not publicised as widely as it could be. Whenever I spoke to other Flex and Flash developers about attending 360Flex:Milan, I was either looked at in surprise, or they hadn’t even heard about it (and then I gave my spiel based on my experience as San Jose)

360Conferences stumbled a little when it came to Milan – I certainly don’t feel that the 360Flex team put as much effort into advertising and organising 360Flex in Milan, as they did for Seattle or even Atlanta. The sad  consequence of this of course is, using their own numbers released in the keynote, if they’d managed to increase the number of attendees, then they probably would have ended up in profit, and other benefits would have flown from that.

In summary, I think that the core idea of a transparent, developer based, community focused conference is a good one. I also think that in Europe at least, the rest of the equation (speaker policy, choice of on-site location and subsequent costs, advertising) needs some reworking.

Sadly, I’ve now changed my opinions of 360Flex conferences. SanJose:2008 has too many things in its favour not to succeed – but my conference dance card is now full up for the year. I might attend Europe:2009, but I certainly won’t be signing up on day one, sight unseen.

BarCampBrighton2 – Seeing Hidden Information

This is a tidying up of my presentation from BarCampBrighton2 over the weekend. The notes I used for my presentation were were pretty much just these URLs with some memory prompts for any points I wanted to raise.


My introductory point was simple: data + understanding == information. For example, when you know that the character string 011000010100001001100011 is in ASCII you will see that the string is really aBc.

Cholera in London

Jeremy Keith brought this one up during the talk and I always forget this one so I thought I’d just slip it in sneakily anyway. This shows plots cholera outbreaks and water pumps on a central London map and pretty much proved the direct relationship between the two.

Charles Minead – Napoleon’s Attack on Russia

Since the last talk there has been an article in the Economist talking about the history of infographics, and there is a much clearer version of this map available. This chart shows six separate pieces of information fairly concisely – geography, time, temperature, the course and direction of the army’s movement, and the number of troops remaining.

Florence Nightingale – Diagram of the Causes of Mortality in the Army of the East

Similarly, Florence Nightingale’s chart was also referenced in the Economist article. It has been re-analysed by Henry Woodbury at Dynamic Diagrams and shown in different formats all based off the same data. It is interesting to notice how the choice of representation can influence the implied relationship of meaning. Sparkline

Another reprise from my BarCampLondon2 talk, Sparklines are a quick and easy way to compare changes in a single value over time. This particular grab is from the Wikipedia article, and provides a comparison between these two stock indexes.

This is a link discussion page for Sparklines, that also contains a couple of pages of the original concept as outlined in Edward Tufte’s book, Beautiful Evidence

Treemaps -Sequioa View

Treemaps were created by Ben Shneiderman as a way of discovering where the hard drive space on his server was being used. The size of the square indicates the size of the file – so a file several directories deep can still be noticed. This is a link to the Windows program SequioaView that can be used for the same task. O’Reilly’s State of the Computer Book Market Every year the team at O’Reilly produce a report on the rise and fall of the computer book market, using Treemaps. Rises are indicated by green colours; falls by red colours; intensity indicates the strength of the rise or fall. It is really easy to see what the big winners and losers for the year are.

Smart Money Stockmarket

A natural place for Treemaps to be used is in the stock market – this is a link to the first pretty one that I could find; the colour scheme is the same as the O’Reilly treemap.


NewsMap is an interactive news browser that consumes GoogleNews. This is plotting the number of distinct news articles (size), the type of article (colour), and the age (brightness).


HistoryFlow is an innovative approach to analysing the history of edits of any Wikipedia page. Using this tool you can clearly examine the influence of various authors on a Wikipedia article, contrasting edits over time, and over the number of edits. It also clearly highlights exactly how pointless wiki-vandalism is.

MySociety: More Travel Maps

I talked about the MySociety travel maps at BarCampLondon2, and they’ve updated their travel maps since then. One of the updates is a really cool RIA-let that allows you to contrast travel times to the Department of Transport with London house prices.

State of the Union

The State of the Union address is a good source to analyse for differences overtime. I couldn’t find the original webpage that I’d sourced, but in searching I found this one that is much better. This site allows you to compare the Union addresses, with particular keywords highlighted. You can compare speeches for key presidents going back to Abraham Lincoln. Unsurprisingly more modern presidents are a little more concerned with terrorism, although war does seem to be a constant.


GapMinder is a great site powered by This RIA allows various statistics to be charted against each other, while highlighting specific countries and looking at the changes over time. When I first found this site, I spent nearly an hour playing around combining different statistics – during which time I noticed a bump when the contraceptive pill was introduced to the US, followed a few years later by a bump in the UK. Of course, an important thing to keep in mind is that correlation is not necessarily causation.

Photo Analysis

I found this article referenced in New Scientist a few years ago. It describes a process where the hidden unique information in a photograph – the arrangement of buildings – can be used to identify where in the world that picture was taken.

Aphex Twin – Windowlicker

Richard D James is known for his weird electronic music and using his face as visual branding for his music. The music video for Windowlicker features a group of bikini clad models all wearing his face as a mask – but he has also hidden his face inside the music, visible only through the use of a spectrogram.

Year Zero

And finally, Year Zero. In conjunction with the new Nine Inch Nails album Year Zero, there was an Alternate Reality Game created by the team who made I Love Bees (a Halo promotion). Information for this game was hidden in all sorts of places – amongst others they include:

  • the tour t-shirts had some characters that were slightly brighter than others, spelling out a URL (
  • inside USB keys left in toilets at concerts there is a mp3 of static showing a phone number (1-216-333-1810)
  • the CD when heated shows a binary number leading to a URL (
  • and finally, towards the end of the song Another Version of the Truth the sound of static spells out in morse code yet another URL (gracetheteacher)

FOTB: Schedule

Yay, Flash on the Beach is nearly here!

This is all the stuff I’ve got more than a 50% intention of seeing. Everything else is up in the air until 5 minutes before hand.

Game Development

9:00 – Keynote
10:15 – AS3 Particle Effects – Now 1000% Extra FREE! (or maybe 50 Reasons AS3 Kicks Ass)
11:30 – From Real to Virtual and Back Again
13:30 – Make Flash Games. Retire Early.
16:00 – Dynamic Abstractions
20:00 – If it aint broke – break it!

9:00 – Flex and Actionscript 3 Worst Practices (although I am tempted by Building Complexity)
10:15 – Perceptive Interactions + Alternative Interfaces
14:45 – Flashing Flex
16:00 – Breaking Away
20:00 – Beyond the Knowledge: The Art of Playing

9:00 – Adobe Town Hall Meeting
10:15 – Sound B(y)tes (or maybe Stylizing Flex)
13:30 – Visualizing Time (although I’d like to see Richard Leggett’s talk, just for all the Gizmos)
16:00 – Algorithms to Fill Space