Recipe: Filled zucchini au gratin

I used to cook this a lot with someone and I’ve recently remembered it again because it’s a little time-intensive but very good. I never measure my things, so take the measurements with a grain of (haha) salt.

Note the lakes of juice and cheese fat. For you fatophobics: That’s the grease you won’t be eating, so all’s good.

Preparation time: 30 minutes. Cooking time: 30 – 40 minutes. Oven required

What you’ll need:

  • 2 – 3 medium-sized zucchini
  • 200 – 300 grams of cherry tomatoes
  • 20 – 30 grams of parmesan cheese, roughly grated (or vegan alternative, Daiya shreds, etc.)
  • 4 – 6 slices of goat cheese (or vegan alternative)
  • 4 cloves of fresh garlic, finely sliced. Not dried, those taste like arse. Alternatively, freeze-dried fresh garlic
  • 2 – 3 medium-sized onions, finely chopped
  • 2 – 3 peperoncini (hot chilli peppers), to taste
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano (flakes or powder)
  • 1 tbsp dried basil (flakes or powder)
  • 1 tbsp mild paprika powder (or 1 tsp hot paprika powder)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • A little pepper

Cut the zucchini lengthwise and hollow them out as best you can by scraping out the flesh using a sharp spoon. Make the zucchini walls as thin as possible without breaking them, so baking won’t take forever later. Keep the zucchini flesh and chop it into small pieces. Cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Chop the garlic finely. Grate the cheese(s).

Chop the onions into small bits. Heat olive oil to slightly less than medium heat. Add the onions, fry very slowly for 5 – 10 minutes without letting them get too brown or black.

Add the garlic, paprika powder, peperoncini, salt, pepper, oregano and basil. Mix with the onions for 30 seconds to make the flavors come out. Then add the zucchini flesh and cherry tomato halves. Raise heat to medium-high. Cook while stirring occasionaly until the tomatoes have broken down and the mixture has a thick, jammy texture.

Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Put the zucchini halves on a baking tray, on top of baking paper. Fill each halved zucchino roughly to the brim with the cooked mixture and sprinkle parmesan and goat cheese on top. Bake at 180ºC in the middle of the oven for 30 – 40 minutes. Keep an eye on the cheese, don’t let it get too dark.

Serve with dry white rice, rösti, pan-cooked potatoes, hash browns, that kind of stuff. Enjoy!

(License: CC-By-SA 3.0; Creative Commons share-alike 3.0. It’s not rocket science but I don’t want recipe crawling sites copying it without attribution.)

Stellenanzeige: Frontend-Entwickler/in (HTML/CSS, JavaScript)

Das hier von meinem Arbeitgeber, nicht von mir persönlich:

Wir suchen zur Verstärkung unseres Entwicklungs-Teams jemanden mit soliden Designkenntnissen für das moderne Web. Unsere Hauptanforderungen sind:

  • Sicherer Umgang mit HTML 4 und 5 und CSS2 und 3.
  • Gute Kenntnis von JavaScript (CoffeeScript empfehlenswert).
  • Kenntnisse mindestens einer JavaScript-Library, am liebsten jQuery.
  • Ein Flair für den aktuellen Web-Stil.
  • Wille, ständig dazuzulernen.

Zusätzlich freuen wir uns über:

  • Kenntnis einer weiteren Programmiersprache, z.B. Ruby oder PHP.
  • Erfahrung mit Typo3 oder Ruby on Rails.
  • Erfahrung mit dem agilen Arbeiten nach Scrum oder Kanban sowie Behavior-Driven Development (BDD)
  • Erfahrung mit automatisierten Software-Tests (z.B. Cucumber, Jasmine)
  • Erste Kenntnisse im Umgang mit git.
  • Ein abgeschlossenes Studium auf passendem Gebiet: Interaction Design, visuelle Gestaltung mit Schwerpunkt Screendesign oder etwas Vergleichbares.

In unserem Team pflegen Sie Interaktionen und Erscheinungsbild sowohl von Rails- wie auch von PHP/Typo3-Applikationen. Im Dialog mit unseren Kunden lassen Sie sich für knifflige Interaktions- und Designfragen solide, skalierbare Lösungen einfallen. Danach implementieren Sie diese selbständig in JavaScript und HTML/CSS. Natürlich stehen Ihnen für den Backendteil Teamkollegen zur Seite.

Einen ersten Eindruck von unseren Applikationen können Sie hier gewinnen:

http://www.zhdk.ch (Typo3-Website)
http://github.com/zhdk/leihs (Quellcode)
http://github.com/zhdk/madek (Quellcode)

 Nun freuen wir uns auf Ihre Bewerbung. Schicken Sie Ihr Portfolio an:

Zürcher Hochschule der Künste
IT-Zentrum
z.H. Ramón Cahenzli
Ausstellungsstr. 60
8005 Zürich
ramon.cahenzli@zhdk.ch

Apple will destroy anyone who dares to innovate

As the world has learned this week, Apple asked Google not to include multitouch functionality in their Android operating system (the OS that runs the Google/T-Mobile G1 mobile phone). And Google complied.

The problem is of course: Apple did not invent multitouch. People like Jeff Han have been working with multitouch long before, but the brain damaged US patent office granted Apple a patent on this technology.

Now Apple is threatening to kill, maim and destroy anyone who dares implement a technology that Apple hasn’t even developed in the first place. And multitouch is not the only thing Apple falsely claims ownership of.

This is no isolated incident. We are seeing such acts of patent aggression from IT companies everywhere in the world, but Apple and Microsoft are probably some of the worst offenders.

The software patent problem needs to be solved. It is developing into a serious hurdle for innovators. Instead of encouraging inventions and innovations, it makes sure that only those with a large array of IP lawyers can bring anything to market without being destroyed by companies claiming IP ownership. The real purpose of patents, to protect the rights of small inventors to an idea, to protect them from exploitation by aggressive companies, was completely lost.

One of the reasons for this is the brainless way that IT and technology patents are granted in the USA — many patents are simply allowed because the patent office employees lack the time to thoroughly research prior art. It’s well-known that the US Patent and Trademark Office is broken in terms of IT patents, now someone fix it. Oh, and let’s see a large enough company challenge Apple on multitouch and all the other ideas they’ve stolen, then patented, when implementing the iPhone.

It’s time someone spanked them around a bit.

Google might want to learn how to make a web site

I realize it’s a tough world for a company coming from a place with a binary understanding of languages (“English” and “Foreign”), but this has nothing to do with cultural differences. It’s about understanding web technology. Or your users, for that matter.

When you visit most of Google’s services, their interface will change its language based on Google’s guess of where you are. If you’re a businessguy travelling in Korea and want to access your e-mail via the web, even from your own computer in the hotel, you’re in for a fantastic learning experience. Puzzle for hours over the interface, wondering whether that button says “Delete” or “Squid sandwich”. Marvel at the new Arabic positioning of interface elements. Get ready to learn German even though it appears nowhere in your browser’s accept-languages list. Millions of people already speak German, might as well catch up to see what all the hype is about. And when you’re subscribed to a Swedish company’s ADSL service (like I was), Google cheerfully serves results in Swedish. Men det är inte so god för de som talar inte svensk.

Google seems to geotarget languages. They try to guess your IP’s location, then serve you some language that they pick from a conveniently located black top hat like the struggling little bunny it is. Living in a country with four official languages, Google’s behavior becomes especially rude. Can they tell whether my IP is from Chur or from Domat/Ems, two towns only a few kilometers apart but with different languages? What about bilingual places such as Biel/Bienne? Oh, that’s right, languages are binary, so that situation would never come up.

Google, here’s an idea. What if the user told you what language they want to accept? There could be, say, a field in the GET request header that tells your servers what languages the user wants to see. This would be a miraculous innovation if it hadn’t been in the HTTP spec since 1999. If you implemented that, perhaps your news groups wouldn’t be filling up with eight pages of user requests to turn off the darn geotargeting since at least September 2007. It would also help if Google services didn’t completely ignore the language settings in users’ accounts, as they do right now. I get German sometimes, then English, perhaps this is a quantum situation and every time I am not googling for anything, my results turn Swahili.

If you’ve reached this page wondering how you do change your language settings for Google’s services, here’s a quote directly from the horse. Err, I mean Graham:

That preference page actually just sets a cookie — language
preference isn’t stored permanently in a database or anything. If
there’s no cookie set, we’ll go by your browser’s language
preferences, which is probably what’s happening for you.

So if you want to get around this, you can do one of the following:

  • Set Firefox to not automatically delete cookies on shut down.
  • Change your browser’s language preference to English.
  • Bookmark http://www.google.com/reader/view/?hl=en and use that link
    for accessing Reader. (The “hl=en” forces it into English, regardless
    of any other settings.)

-Graham

Jumping through hoops? It’s the new web experience. Trouble with this approach is, there still seems to be some geotargeting involved, so if you forget accessing the services via hl=en, you might still end up googling in Sanskrit from time to time.

Two Finnish kitchen implements everyone should have

The first is the [kuivauskaappi](http://terror.snm-hgkz.ch/photos/v/holidays/tre2k6/CIMG3997.JPG.html). It’s a closet where you can put your dishes and other things to dry. Where you would normally find solid shelving, hyper glory magical kuivauskaappi has rubberized iron grills! You put your items-to-be-dried in there, the water drips from them onto the sink, and they (now hold your breath) dry!

How nobody else can have this is beyond me. Just think of it, never touch a towel again to dry the dishes! It saves time! If everyone in Germany or perhaps Spain had one of these, the EU’s GDP would take a jump of 30%.

The other thing is [built-in cutting boards](http://terror.snm-hgkz.ch/photos/v/holidays/tre2k6/CIMG4000.JPG.html). No more lugging around thick slabs of wood and crumbing up the entire kitchen.

Please, kitchen builders of Europe, steal this stuff.