Monthly Archives: December 2006

Help Axon Labs Test Their Next-Gen Alarm Clock and Get Paid to Sleep

Providence-based Axon Labs, who presented at the September Providence Geeks Dinner, is taking their product development process to the next level, and is looking for folks (healthy adults ages 30+) to test their next-generation alarm clock:

The trial involves a comfortable night asleep in our lab with our sophisticated bio-alarm system. Fair compensation is provided for those who spend a night in our offices. This is an exciting and unique opportunity. Please email
sleep at for more information.

I, for one, have signed up as I think the Axon guys are up to some very cool stuff, and, of course, because I could use the shut eye.


PBN Bids Farewell To Jim Willis: "IT Pioneer Leaving R.I. this Month"

At the last Geek Dinner, we bid farewell to Providence Geek and e-government advocate/expert extraordinaire Jim Willis.

The Providence Business NewsDavid Ortiz has written an excellent article highlighting Jim’s tenor at the helm of RI Secretary of State’s e-goverment services initiative. Here’s an excerpt:

[Willis], who was recruited by Brown in 2003 as director of e-government services, transformed the inner workings of the office’s Web site – – from the standard proprietary software to open-source code. The results have won national recognition while also making official information more accessible to the state’s citizens – exactly what Willis had in mind when he made the switch. “If you want a transparent government,� he said, “well, let’s run it on transparent software.�

The print-version of the article includes a photo of Jim along with fellow Secretary of State IT staffer and Providence Geek Christopher Fowler.

Cool Local Geek Jobs

Going forward, we’re going to call out new job postings on the Providence Geeks’ ad hoc Job Board. We’ve got some very cool ones here:

Have an local info-tech related position that you’re looking to fill? Register here and post under the “Help Wanted” thread.

Bad Karma

We use SpamKarma 2 to keep this site relatively clean of comment spam. I was clearing out the filter a few days ago and found a message with an astoundingly low karma of -3690.56. The usual value is in the low (high) double digits, and I’ve seen a few in the high (low) triple digits. But this is some sort of new evolutionary low. Just thought you’d like to know.

Help Build and Play a Video Game System This Afternoon (12/6/2006)

XGameStation Pico Assembly Video

I recently picked up an XGameStation Pico, which is a small video game system you can build and program yourself. I’m going to be coming up to AS220 around 2:30pm, and I’ll set up a little work area where I can assemble the unit, and if the darn thing works, I’ll even plug it into the projector for some big-screen neo-retro action before the Geek Dinner. Feel free to come along and watch, help, or give me moral support when I mess something up beyond repair!

P.S. If you have a Parallax SX-Key and a KeySpan 19HS USB/Serial adapter, bring it along. Those are the two accessories I forgot to order until last night (and without them, we’ll only be able to run the default video game that’s pre-flashed onto the system).

Update: We managed to assemble it about half-way before we were distracted by burritos and beverages. You can see the completed system here.