I frequently create new projects in symfony; however, I often forget the exact steps that are required. I have referenced my previous workflow a zillion times, but many of the steps have changed with version 1.4.

$ cd ~
$ mkdir sfproject
$ cd sfproject
$ symfony propel
$ symfony generate:project sfproject
$ symfony generate:app frontend

Create schema.yml
Create new database in phpMyAdmin
$ symfony configure:database "mysql:host=db.domain.com;dbname=actualdbname" username passwd

$ symphony propel:build-model
$ symphony propel:build-sql
$ symfony propel:insert-sql
$ symfony propel:build-forms
$ symfony propel:generate-module frontend article Article
$ symfony cache:clear

Additional data on symfony tasks is available.

Throughout the web multiple users are reporting this console error message is related to slow downs and hangs within OS X Lion:

kernel: IOSurface: buffer allocation size is zero

Affected users are often seeing hundreds of these messages in the console logs and they seems to related to the time when hangs and slow downs occur. I’ve been it in console logs, but I’ve not been able to relate any performance issues to it. I suspect that everybody running flash will show this error. Here are some related links:


Many people are complaining that in Mass Effect under Windows 7 that they can’t see the mouse pointer. The common thread seems to be Windows 7 although most of these users have resurrected the game from Steam.

The only workaround that I could find (that would work for me) is to play in the game in windowed mode. Other users have had good luck in updating their video card drivers.

Good luck!

One of the most beautiful battles in DA2 involves defeating the Ancient Rock Wraith. Overall, it’s actually an easy battle if you know the one key.

The Wraith does a huge draining explosion every few minutes. It is very obvious when it is coming. Many people use the long time between explosions to power up with healing spells and potions; however, there is an easier way. In fact, using this method I did it with only one healing spell used.

During this draining explosion, you must hide your party behind a rock pillar. The explosions will not harm you. This picture shows how it should look.  Click for a larger version.

The physics of the explosions wedge around you as you would expect. Very pretty, very cool.

This morning I look the time to email the Durham area senators and representatives about this bill.  I will quote what I included in my email here:

I feel strongly that we should not restrict how towns and communities build their internet infrastructure.

I originally grew up in small town in Mississippi. We struggled to make ends meet. Realizing the future, my parents sacrificed so that I could have a computer and access to the primitive version of the internet.  This access allowed me to accelerate my education and computer skills.  I believe this early access to the internet was one of the key reasons for my future success.

The internet is the great equalizer. If a large company refuses to provide adequate internet to an area, these communities must have a way to provide internet to their population.  Most people will not even live in an area without adequate internet access anymore.

Equally, TWC already greatly limits broadband access throughout our area. Just because we feel that we have adequate broadband internet access today, do we know that we will tomorrow?  Do we know if we currently have enough roads and bridges to last us forever, for example? Restricting the methods that communities can compete and develop infrastructure hurts all of us.

Here you can see the list of representative who voted for and against this bill:

Democrat Republican
Ayes: Representative(s): Brisson; Carney; Crawford; Earle; Graham; Hamilton; Hill; Michaux; Moore, R.; Owens; Pierce; Spear; Wainwright; Warren, E.; Wray Representative(s): Avila; Blackwell; Blust; Boles; Brawley; Brown, L.; Brown, R.; Brubaker; Burr; Cleveland; Collins; Cook; Current; Daughtry; Dixon; Dockham; Dollar; Faircloth; Folwell; Frye; Gillespie; Guice; Hager; Hastings; Hilton; Hollo; Holloway; Horn; Howard; Hurley; Iler; Ingle; Johnson; Jones; Jordan; Justice; Killian; Langdon; LaRoque; Lewis; McComas; McCormick; McElraft; McGee; McGrady; Mills; Moffitt; Moore, T.; Murry; Pridgen; Randleman; Rhyne; Sager; Samuelson; Sanderson; Setzer; Shepard; Stam; Starnes; Steen; Stevens; Stone; Tillis (SPEAKER); Torbett; Warren, H.; West
Noes: Representative(s): Adams; Alexander, K.; Alexander, M.; Bell; Bordsen; Brandon; Bryant; Cotham; Faison; Farmer-Butterfield; Fisher; Floyd; Gill; Glazier; Goodman; Hackney; Haire; Hall; Harrison; Insko; Jackson; Jeffus; Keever; Lucas; Luebke; Martin; McGuirt; McLawhorn; Mobley; Parfitt; Parmon; Rapp; Ross; Tolson; Weiss; Wilkins; Womble Representative(s): None

To find out your representation, you may search by your county or zip code.

Here’s a nice reddit discussion about this issue.

Here is what Lucus said about it

Dean Smith asked Alexander Julian to redesign the Tar Heel hoops uniforms prior to the 1991-92 season. At that time, Julian famously described the task as, “Like God calling asking you to make new halos for the archangels.” The famous designer’s changes included the argyle, a bolder trim, and an upgraded fabric. Before the final version was decided, he came up with several different sketches, including one drawing that looked suspiciously like a sweater vest. OK, maybe that was a little strange, but it’s still better than a unitard.

The next major change came before the 1999-2000 season, with the jerseys that featured the interlocking “NC” on the front. Fans hated those jerseys…until the team made the Final Four, and all of a sudden they didn’t seem so bad anymore.

All things considered, Carolina uniforms have remained remarkably consistent over the last two decades. There will always be subtle changes from year to year–a tweaked uniform means new product for Nike to sell–but nothing as dramatic as what the Tar Heels saw from Oregon in Maui. The Ducks had a crate full of Maui-specific team gear, including casual Hawaiian shirts, jerseys with a floral trim, and shoes that repeated that same trim. Oregon also wore the same Hawaiian themed warmup t-shirts worn by the Tar Heels. And no, those t-shirts aren’t for sale.

Susan Dickenson has the best article describing Alexander Julian’s design process for those uniforms.  Here, Julian describes exactly the origination for the Argyle idea:

Some people think the argyle came from Dean Smith’s old four corners play because it looks kind of like that, but actually it came from the fact that my first Coty award was catylyzed by a 14-color argyle sweater. That was my ‘lucky’ argyle and so I put my ‘lucky’ argyle on these uniforms and we won the national championship the next year.

Installing Java in OS X 10.7 Lion

February 27th, 2011

Several people have tweeted me to ask me how to install Java in OS X Lion. I would love to help them, but I haven’t had any problems with it.  As soon as OS X realized it needed Java, it downloaded and installed it automatically.  Sorry.

A couple of people did need to switch their preferred order of which version of Java to actually use.  You can do this through Java’s Preferences:

Does Food Cause Acne?

February 12th, 2011

Many people over the years have asked me if certain foods cause or exacerbate acne. I’m not a dermatologist, but I can go to pubmed and do a search. After reading for a while, these are my opinions about the topic.

Creative Commons License photo credit: moonshake

Yes, I’m a doctor, but don’t do anything without discussing it with your own personal doctor.

Most people have acne at some point in life. Over 80% of adolescents suffer with it at one time or another. In my life the pendulum over diet and acne has swung back and forth. When I was young, everybody said fat and chocolate made it worse. In college, the popular notion was that diet did not play a role. Now, it seems obvious that diet is an important factor in the control of acne.

Sugars and Fats–

In societies without refined sugar, acne basically does not exist. As societies become “more Western” and add more fats and sugars, acne starts to appear. Even in modern societies, people who have acne are more likely to eat high fats and/or high sugar foods. Studies have shown that changing diet patterns by decreasing sugar intake can decrease acne.

Interesting enough, I could not find any association with chocolate. Chocolate is unlikely to have a role–thank goodness.

In overly simplistic terms, sugars cause stimulates the insulin pathway which changes the hormonal balance and increases the likelihood of acne. Bad fats are pro-inflammatory and increase follicle stimulation which ultimately increase acne severity.


As much as a dairy fan as I am, good evidence exists that high daily intake can increase risks of acne. Both whole and skim milk seem to have this effect. It’s unclear if this is a hormonal or lactose effect.


The evidence is fairly strong that diet does affect acne. Multiple, multiple studies have now shown that refined sugars and dangerous fats are very bad for the body for multiple reasons. It should not be surprising that the skin shows these affects as well.

Milk is a tough one for me. Many studies exist that milk in a balanced diet is helpful; however, I can not argue that the research also suggests that it contributes to acne.

Many articles on pubmed are no longer free, but Ferdowsian has an article about diet and acne that is an easy, free read.

Facebook has recently updated the Page function.  Basically, this new feature should allow you to treat your Facebook Page as a separate account. Once you upgrade, your Page will have a appearance that is similar in structure to your Profile.  Here are some of the features:

  • Get notifications when fans interact with your page or posts
  • See activity from the pages you like in your news feed
  • Like other pages and feature them on your page
  • Make comments as your page on other pages

Unfortunately, many Facebook Applications that you were able to install directly to a Page no longer work.  Instead the following error occurs:

“To access this page, you’ll need to switch from using Facebook as your page to using Facebook as yourself.”

There is no way to revert to the old pages once you do the upgrade.

Databases have always been tough for me.  SQL joins are very difficult to process and remember.  Here are a couple of articles that I always reference when trying to re-understand the process of joins:

Visual Explanation of Joins

Visual SQL Joins