MySQL and Binary(16) – The Reasons/Benefits/Drawbacks (#mysql)

I recently posted an article about using BINARY(16) for storing MD5’s as unique identifiers instead of simple integer ID’s (usually auto increment); in that article I touched on one of the benefits, reducing JOIN’s, but there are other reasons for doing it too, so I thought I’d post an article discussing purely the reasons behind using BINARY(16). As I discussed in my previous article, an MD5 string is actually a hexadecimal number capable of storing values as large as 340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456. MySQL doesn’t have any efficient integer field for storing numbers this big so you have two choices for storage, a … Continue reading

MySQL – Binary(16) and scalability

Over the past few months at work, we’ve seen our database grown from silly big to really silly big, it’s still a way to go to get to the size of the big boys such as Facebook etc. but it’s still a database stored in MySQL that most day-to-day PHP programmers would avoid like a midget cannibal. One of the great things about using something like MySQL (and any other “real” database) is the ability to cross-query data, i.e. to grab data from one data-set (table) and join it to another data-set (table) to get a single set of results, … Continue reading

Avatar is a must see film – at IMAX in 3D

On Tuesday night we went to see Avatar at the IMAX in Bradford’s National Museum of Film and Photography. I had semi high expectations for the film but had heard some bad press so how good it would be was left wide open. someone suggested we go to see it at the IMAX as it is vastly better, so that’s what we did. The film was visually incredible, the attention to detail in the 3D work is undoubtedly the best I’ve seen. Pandora (the moon the Navi live on) is a world I wish I could experience first hand, from … Continue reading

Federal Court to determine constitutional legality of gay marriage

It seems like it’s taken a long time for someone in the States to get up and do it, but someone seems to finally be ready to stand up in court and challenge the legality of banning same-sex marriage on a nationwide scale. The result of this trial should finally end the confusion the USA has had in it’s divided states. If it is voted unconstitutional to ban the marriage of two people of the same sex, any state that currently denies it will no longer be able to, effectively ending one of the biggest remaining prejudices in the States; … Continue reading

Transparent Laptop? Samsung’s new 14 inch OLED display

We’ve all seen the movies where interactive displays are done on transparent glass, well Samsung, using OLED (organic light emitting diodes) have finally created one for us all to gawp over. Details are scarce, but it shows that yet another sci-fi idea is becoming mainstream reality. For now, here’s a video of the display, courtesy of Engadget.

What a line up – and now Ivana Trump! Celebrity Big Brother

I’ve not watched much Celebrity Big Brother this time around, as usual it’s become extremely over the top and feels almost scripted (as in the housemates, obviously BB has a script!) One thing they have done this time around though is actually get a couple of people who can actually be classed as celebrities. I know, I know, they’re not switch on the TV and they’ll be on a TV show or film right now, but they’re people who’s names you recognise, I think most notably (until this weekend) was Basshunter, even people who find his music terrible know the … Continue reading

Snowy Britain – NASA Terra image

NASA uploaded an image today of Great Britain from space as of 11:50 UTC today, it’s a truly remarkable picture showing just how much it has snowed here. For anyone not from the UK, snow like this has not hit Britain for over 30 years, hence all the hoo-haa about. It looks beautiful though, although weirdly sci-fi in nature. I must admit, as cold as I am on my way to work on the morning, I still love the fact everything is white, and it’s that perfect powder snow too, if I lived near mountains, it would be great for … Continue reading

New Bank Holiday coming up (hopefully permanent)

Yes, that’s right, we’re getting an extra bank holiday in 2012 (I know, a little bit of a wait still) as a result of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. The bank holiday will be on the 5th of June and the Whitsun bank Holiday will be moved to the 4th of June to give a nice long 4 day weekend; I’m sure the parents will be pleased! Lord Mandelson said it would be a “truly historic occasion” which would allow the British people to show their “pride and affection” for The Queen. I’ll be honest, I won’t be showing my pride … Continue reading

US Toughens up on incoming planes from “terror-prone” countries

Well, it was good while it was getting better, now we’re back to square one again, I’m talking about airport security of course. After the attempted plane bombing attempt on Christmas Day, security has now been upped at international US airports again for any incoming flights deemed to be from “terror-prone” countries. The new rules came into effect today as Barack Obama has been under pressure to visibly improve security. The Transportation Security Administration said in a statement the new rules apply to flyers coming from or via countries on the US state department’s state sponsors of terrorism list. This … Continue reading