Stolen Mac Laptop W88105B2YJZ 7

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 22 Jul 2010 15:44:00 GMT

This morning I showed up at Xcellent Creations, Inc. ready to rock out some code. Our company has been fortunate enough to be very, very busy lately (probably why I have not posted lately), and early mornings/late nights are the norm. I try to keep a good work / home life balance, and last night I made a real effort by leaving my laptop (serial W88105B2YJZ) at the office. This morning I was greeted by a slew of Denver Police Officers, who let me know there was a break in. Two buildings, several offices.

We were lucky in that no monitors were stolen, the Mac Pro was left in tact, and a laptop in a case was left. The stolen items included:

  • MacBook Pro Serial Number W88105B2YJZ
  • iPod Touch 8GB
  • G1 Android Phone
  • A Borrowed DVX100a Panasonic Camcorder

Needless to say the entire company and myself feel extremely violated. If you happen to be using that laptop, please know it is stolen ;).

Reasonable precautions were taken with our office door and the outside door being locked. The laptop data was secured by password, and any crucial data such as code is safely in github or our SVN repositories. I will be contacting customers today to address any concerns.

Our company as a whole will be implementing new policies and reviewing the office situation and if a move is necessary. Rest assured that we are taking this situation extremely seriously.

Introducing One Time use links 6

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Mon, 16 Nov 2009 23:56:00 GMT

I have had the idea for for a while now. It was a simple enough concept that it took me about one day to realize it while attending Developer Day Boulder. This simple tool lets you share a one time use link. Example use cases:

  • Share a login / password
  • Share a credit card number

Feedback is always appreciated. Would love to know what you would use it for or potential new features.

Zombie Crawl Oct. 20, 2007 2

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Fri, 05 Oct 2007 12:54:00 GMT

This is going to be fun!

iPhone Tech Talk 1

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 23 Aug 2007 13:35:00 GMT

I am sitting at DIA getting ready to fly out to San Francisco for the iPhone tech talk. Should be interesting to meet some other developers and get insight on the platform. I will be live txt'ing right here, so simply tune in every so often to see new pics and messages. Live feed removed now that event has ended.

RIP Marla 2

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 26 Jul 2007 12:31:00 GMT

Marla, my main web server, died today. Hence the downtime for this site and several others. I have had new servers on order, but they didn't make it in time... Temporarily everything is running off of Yoda, and will be moved to the new servers ASAP. To all my customers, many apologies. This is one of those things you plan for, but can never stop from happening. If anyone is interested in a great adaptec scsi RAID card, or a supermicro server that most likely needs a new power supply, give me a shout, benr -at-

iPhone Network Test 2

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Wed, 27 Jun 2007 00:51:00 GMT

The iPhone is almost upon us! As I announced previously I am developing iPhone applications. My first app is a simple Network Test that is formatted for the iPhone. It uses a javascript method for determining the speed of the network the user is connected to. In the future I might start saving the results of the tests and displaying that data. In the mean time be sure to visit to try it out. As always comments appreciated.

I am Officially an iPhone Developer 2

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Mon, 11 Jun 2007 12:29:00 GMT

Today's Apple World Wide Developer keynote introduced 10 (sorta) new features for the next version of Mac OS X, Safari for Windows, and an iPhones "SDK". Ok, it is not a full blown SDK, but basically web 2.0 apps that run in Safari on the iPhone. So I am officially an iPhone Developer. If you would like an application to be built in time for the iPhone launch send me an email at benr - at - and we'll get cranking. I know I will have at least one app ready for launch regardless. More details as they become available.

Google Co-op Custom Search Engines

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 07 Jun 2007 11:33:00 GMT

When Google announced the new Google Co-op, which includes custom search engines, I did not immediately see the value. I wish I understood this services huge value sooner! I was trying to configure a reliable Apache with Mongrel Clustering setup, but was having a very tough time finding information. The Mongrel-users mailing list is hosted using Mailman, which does not have an obvious search function. When querying Google I was getting those results mixed in with the rest of the web. This is a perfect example of how a custom search engine can narrow your scope and get you the right answer fast. I setup a simple custom engine that just searched I used the same query I had been using within Google, but this time found my answer almost immediately.

I have started another Ruby on Rails dedicated search engine that I hope to refine as I find more sources of information. This one searches the major Rails/Ruby mailing lists, the wiki, and the main site. I have left the search engine open, so if you have a site to contribute, feel free!

Ruby On Rails Custom Search
Google Custom Search

Mongrel Mailing List Search
Google Custom Search

Yes I am Alive

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 31 May 2007 11:17:00 GMT

Lately I have been getting IM's and email regarding the lack of posts. Amazing, this stuff is free you know! But I thought I would check in and say, yes I am alive, and I have a really cool announcement coming up plus some new tutorials. Here is a sneak peak:

First Contest Winner 1

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Fri, 04 May 2007 10:01:00 GMT

Way back on March 6 I announced a contest. So without further ado our winner is Faizal from Kuala Lumpur! Be sure to check out his blog RANDOMNESS.

I am planning on doing another contest, what kind of prizes would you be interested in? Leave your suggestions in the comments section.

Web Design Survey - Take a Look

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Wed, 25 Apr 2007 07:57:00 GMT

A List Apart Sponsored

Made it to Beijing

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Mon, 09 Apr 2007 05:39:00 GMT

Alright, it is 7:36 PM on Monday night and we have made it to Beijing. Absolutely amazing city. I am working on the hotel's Red Flag Linux computer, and though it did recognize and view the contents of our camera, editing was a challenge with some of the text in Mandarin. So no pictures yet, but to all those out there reading along, we have arrived.

And now to get some freaking sleep!

I am off, and damn is this other site creative

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Sat, 07 Apr 2007 17:09:00 GMT

So I am off to China tomorrow. I am finishing up with some emails and trying to catch up on all my feeds. 37 Signals has a blog and pointed out one of the most creative and amusing websites I have ever seen. Be sure to click here and take a look.

Today is a good day 4

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Mon, 02 Apr 2007 12:38:00 GMT

Earlier this morning I was involved in a car accident. I was headed on I-70 to Colorado Blvd. I looked over to change lanes, started changing, when the truck in front of me slowed down. I ran right into the mechanical lift on the back. The metal bar ripped through the car's hood and engine up to the dashboard cracking the windshield, I was on the brakes, but was stuck to the truck, so I was dragged behind it for about 50 Feet (Fireman's estimate). In order to get the car free, the truck had to back up, and then push the hood down to pull forward. It hit the car too high to let the airbags go off.

I walked away without a scratch, so today is a good day.

Update: Here are some pictures of the car.

GTA 4 Trailer

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 29 Mar 2007 15:27:00 GMT

The Rock Star Games site has been counting down to the trailer of GTA IV for a long time, so today when the counter hit 0 I was waiting to watch it. Unfortunately the site instantly stalled due to the high load. I was able to pull the source code from the page, even though the flash did not load, and thought this snippet was cute:

var hasRightVersion = DetectFlashVer(requiredMajorVersion, requiredMinorVersion, requiredRevision);
if(hasRightVersion) { // if we've detected an acceptable version
} else { // flash is too old or we can't detect the plugin
var alternateContent = ''
+ 'The Rockstar Games Presents Grand Theft Auto IV website requires the Macromedia Flash Player 8.'
+ 'Get Flash'; document.write(alternateContent); // insert non-flash content

Mac OS X 10.4.9 Out

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Tue, 13 Mar 2007 21:06:00 GMT

Tonight my Xserve went down at the co-lo. Upon arrival and reboot, I found that 10.4.9 has been released. Software Update for your copy of that update and iPhoto 6.0.6.

Official update here.

Game Developer Conference - Nintendo Keynote NOW! Weak!

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 08 Mar 2007 12:27:00 GMT

Nintendo Keynote with none other than the Miyamoto is in progress, check it out:

1up Coverage or
Joystiq Coverage

Update: Just finished reading the keynote, talk about weak. I know that there wasn't supposed to be anything new, but c'mon! Sony has been more impressive at GDC. Their announcement of Home really kicked ass and made me see a potential reason to pick up a PS3.

It's A Contest! 8

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Tue, 06 Mar 2007 09:57:00 GMT

Ok, so my blog has been a little quiet lately. February was extremely busy so I am starting March off with a contest. To enter simply leave a comment on this post. A winner will randomly be chosen on the last day of the month. The prize? Issue 5 of the Marvel Civil War series.

ZFS, Why it Rocks

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Tue, 16 Jan 2007 19:47:23 GMT

I have read a lot about ZFS, but this article by far does the best job of summing up the great features of the new file system.

Casa Sollevare, Luxury Living in Grand Junction

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Sun, 07 Jan 2007 13:34:00 GMT

I recently completed a website for Casa Sollevare, a luxury home in Grand Junction Colorado, using the Ruby on Rails framework. The home architect and owner has put an amazing amount of unique details into this custom Colorado Mountain home. In fact it was the 2006 Home of the Year in the Colorado Homes & Lifestyles magazine. He describes the house as "Italian Country Living Under the Colorado Sun". Even if your not in the market for a multi-million dollar home, the summary of photos and captions is a must see as well as the Virtual Tour.

The site has a custom, integrated back end with an AJAX rich, drag and drop Gallery Administration system paired with a WYSIWYG rich text editor. I am thinking of releasing the Gallery code to the Rails community, so if your interested be sure to shoot an email to benr at I should have a screencast up soon to show the system.

Wii Saber for Mac OS X 4

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Tue, 12 Dec 2006 10:16:00 GMT

Can't wait to play a Star Wars game on Wii? Use this program to turn your Wiimote into a motion sensitive lightsaber with sound on Mac OS X. The video below shows it in action. I have also included a fan video of how you could potentially use the Wii controls to really control a Star Wars title. Enjoy.

Happy Halloween ;)

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Sat, 28 Oct 2006 18:55:02 GMT

PS3 Coming Bundled with Talladega Nights

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Fri, 20 Oct 2006 15:56:00 GMT

I was lucky and was able to pre-order a PS3 with EBgames. Today they called and left me a message saying that the PS3 will come bundled with a Blu-ray copy of Talladega Nights. As updates come from EBgames I will be sure to pass them along. I will also try to get the audio from the message recorded.

Ah! Trackback Spam!!!

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Tue, 10 Oct 2006 12:46:20 GMT

So today my blog crashed for a minute (log issue) and when I brought it back up I realized that the trackback feature was being abused, throughly.

I would like to apologize for not catching this sooner as there were probably in excess of 300 or 400 really crappy sites being linked to by yours truly.

Until further notice, trackbacks have been disabled. What is a trackback you ask, wikipedia knows.

Gentoo GCC 4.1.1 Upgrade

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 31 Aug 2006 16:34:46 GMT

Today I had the pleasure of upgrading several Gentoo boxes to the 4.1.1 GCC and glibc 2.4. Since I had a lot of time on my hands, I pulled information from the forum and the Gentoo Documentation to create a Gentoo Linux GCC 3.4.6 to GCC 4.1.1 Upgrade Guide. Feel free to leave comments with corrections/suggestions.

Remember to use this as a supplement to the gentoo documentation! ~ 1 Year Anniversary 1

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Tue, 29 Aug 2006 23:02:00 GMT

Phew... Almost missed it... So today marks one year of blogging for me, and it has been a great one. I don't have anything exciting or exceptional to say, except thanks to all the readers out there, who have grown by leaps and bounds.

Cheers ~ Ben Reubenstein

Just a few things running through my head

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Wed, 19 Jul 2006 12:26:00 GMT

To say I have been busy lately is an understatement. Between consulting, the regular 9 to 5, and moving homes, I am preparing for a trip to vegas, a wedding, and a trip to NYC. This needless to say has created a void in my blogosphere presence.

There are a lot of thoughts rolling around in my head that I would like to post an opinion on. Net Neutrality, Guitar Hero II, and an interview with Olivier Fourdan. Thoughts on CSS, AOL retention tactics, and many more...

So look for some exciting stuff... In August... ok September for sure!

~ Cheers ~

Dave Coughanour in Iraq 3

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 25 May 2006 23:11:45 GMT

I have been sitting on an interview with Dave Coughanour for way too long! Dave is currently in Iraq and has set up an ISP there for the soldiers on his base. Read the interview to find out more. I hope to do more interviews in the future. A big thanks to Dave for his time.

Typo Upgrade 3

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Thu, 04 May 2006 21:39:00 GMT

I just updated benr75 to run off of the Typo trunk. The move went relatively smoothly, but with a few minor issues. The first issue was solved pretty quickly as DeLynn Berry upgraded recently too, and posted this fix for many older templates that were not using the right method to render the sidebar.

My next issue I must say got my heart racing for a minute. The database changed a great deal since the last release, and the migration for some reason did not set the type or name fields for my pages. After some quick SQL, I changed the NULL type fields to Page in the Contents table, and fixed the NULL name fields back to their original name.

As a bonus the commenting is now working properly!

Lighttpd and AWStats 1

Posted by Ben Reubenstein Mon, 23 Jan 2006 14:38:00 GMT

Want to use AWStats but don't run Apache? Here is a tutorial I wrote on getting AWStats and Lighttpd to work together. If you don't know what I am talking about, AWStats is a log analyzing package. It is a very useful tool to get some good metrics on website traffic. When I moved to Rails I also moved to Lighttpd as a webserver. Luckily AWStats came along for the ride.

Tutorial: Lighttpd + AWStats