Larsblog

Are macro lagers really all the same?

Beer enthusiasts like to say that people who argue over which industrial pale lager is best are missing the point, because they all essentially taste the same, and none of them are very good, anyway. I personally agree with that, and that now that there are so many good craft beers available everywhere, there's really no reason to drink this stuff at all. ...

Read | 2011-05-08 16:23 | 11 comment(s)

Traditional Norwegian homebrew, finally

I was recently invited to give a presentation on Topic Maps at Vestlandsforsking in Sogndal, as part of their 25-year jubilee seminar series. I first tried to fly there in December, but because of fog the plane was never able to land. Ironically, the flight itself was absolutely beautiful. The little propeller plane flew over an endless expanse of snow-capped mountains in blazing sunshine. Just before arriving in Sogndal we could clearly see the Jotunheimen mountain range in the distance, sticking up over the smaller mountains. ...

Read | 2011-04-03 10:18 | 6 comment(s)

Bayesian identity resolution

Stian Danenbarger has been telling me for a while about entity resolution (as he and many others call it), or identity resolution (as Wikipedia calls it). Basically, it's the process of working out which records/entities/objects actually represent the same real-world things by comparing their properties. Once Stian confirmed that Bayesian inferencing was a common method for this, I suddenly saw how you can actually do a poor man's version of this with just a little basic scripting. ...

Read | 2011-02-11 13:23 | 20 comment(s)

What's up?

While RSS and Atom are a great way to stay up to date on what is published around the web, I think the feed-centric approach taken by most feed readers is suboptimal. For some feeds I want to read everything that is posted, but for others I want to read only those few posts which are about subjects I care about, or by authors I like particularly. Another problem is that some feeds (for example those of newspapers) have hundreds of posts every day. Staying on top of that is just too much manual effort. ...

Read | 2011-02-03 19:50 | 11 comment(s)

The applications of SDshare

Graham Moore a few years ago came up with the idea of publishing changes to topic maps using Atom, and a CEN project has now developed and published a specification for it called SDshare. Work is also underway to make SDshare a full ISO standard. ...

Read | 2010-11-21 14:29 | 0 comment(s)

Europe's best-kept beer secret?

A flood of industrial lager has swept away the native beer traditions of just about every country in Europe except, famously, for the Czech Republic, Germany, Belgium, and the UK. Oh, and, it turns out, Lithuania. If you haven't heard about Lithuanian beer traditions, don't worry, because nobody else has, either. ...

Read | 2010-09-18 21:09 | 10 comment(s)

Ægir, Flåm

It's far and away the most spectacular brewpub I've ever seen. Part of it is the location, at the end of a Norwegian fjord surrounded by tall mountains that seem to tower over the little village. But it's just as much the brewpub itself, a dark, bulky wooden structure looking vaguely like a stave church that's lost its tower, decorated with wooden dragons on the roof, in true dragestil. Inside it's no less unusual, as we'll get to in a moment. ...

Read | 2010-08-05 20:33 | 5 comment(s)

The sixth German Gose

When I heard there was a third gose in Goslar I didn't want to believe it. After all, we travelled to Goslar in 2008 specifically to try the two goses from Brauhaus Goslar, carefully hunted down both the pale and dark versions, and tried them both several times. I then crossed Goslar off my list of "places to visit before I die," and was ready to move on. So to be told that there was another gose in Goslar was not what I wanted to hear. Especially not that it was only available in a place I'd already tried to get in, and failed because it was reserved for a private party. ...

Read | 2010-07-17 11:44 | 2 comment(s)

My report on OOXML and ODF

Disclaimer: Work on this in the Norwegian government has been going on for years. I worked on this for four months, producing a 45-page report. This blog posting oversimplifies most of the way through in the interests of brevity. ...

Read | 2010-05-09 20:47 | 13 comment(s)

Traditional Nordic beer

In the Nordic countries there is a whole style of brewing that has so far almost completely escaped the attention of beer enthusiasts, although some tips of the iceberg are showing above the surface here and there, if you look carefully. I'm referring to the traditional homebrewers, who have just about nothing in common with the new wave of US-inspired home brewers. What makes these brewers so interesting is that the beers they brew belong to styles that are almost completely unknown outside of these communities. ...

Read | 2010-01-16 14:48 | 13 comment(s)

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