The ninth happy number, and round to some varieties of geek

Resolving to write more, the traditional [
2000,2001,2002,2003,2004,2005,2006,2007,2008,2009,2011,2012] birthday post seems a good step in that direction.

I will be in the pub (the Porterhouse, Covent Garden, London) Later (from 4pm) if anyone wishes to join me.

computing programming

Kickstarter Tracking & Historic currency conversion in Google Spreadsheets

Because I’m going to need this again at some point.

I’m currently tracking progress of my Kickstarted projects with a Google Drive Spreadsheet. This is partly because it tells me exactly how much money I’ve spent on KS projects over the last year, and helps me manage my new One In One Out system of dealing with them. But one of the issues with this is that most Kickstarters charge in dollars, and the CSV export reflects this, as does my record of how much I’ve spent, so I wanted to convert the numbers to sterling for stats. I could use the current rate, but while it fluctuates slowly, it does fluctuate, and I’d like this to be more long-term useful. Since I already have a completion date for each project – which is within a couple of days of when the money was taken – I can work it out using the GoogleFinance methods. This is how I’m doing that:

Given this:

Title Progress % Ended Pledge £
OOTS Reprint Delivered 100% 21/02/2012 $76 £47.95
Project GODUS Waiting 20 21/12/2012 £15 £15.00

Column E is worked out like this:

(Because it keeps breaking: That’s This GIST).

So eventually you can get graphs like this:


Which tells me that by straight count, 34.2% of the projects I’ve backed have delivered, a small number have failed, and most are in progress (“Delivered” means I have all the physical/digital stuff I paid for out of it. This is a personal rather than objective measure, so I’m counting the OOTS as having arrived because my main purpose was to get the books, the digital stuff Rich is still working on is very much an added bonus. So from my perspective it’s “done”. “Failed” means that the project was funded, but didn’t work out. Kickstart failures don’t get on this chart)

(If you want to copy the spreadsheet for your own purposes, you can clone it to your own Google Drive account from this blank version)

Current issues: If the final date wasn’t a trading day, the historical version falls back to today’s result, rather than the previous trading day. Also, I’d like to automatically pull in data from Kickstarter, but so far no API to do so 🙂


Coffee Equipment Porn: Vacuum/Siphon Coffee

So, I picked up a V/S coffee maker for 25 quid from Amazon (I have a beverage habit). It arrived shortly before I wandered up to Glasgow for last weekend, so I didn’t really get to test-drive it until now. The first attempt is above.

It does produce different coffee to either the espresso, aeropress or french press methods, unsurprisingly  It’s less bitter than the french press – the cloth filter removes most of the bitter oils – but a lot more rounded a flavour.

It is, however, significantly more of a bastard to clean.