Archive for September, 2010

Sous-vide Cooking

My love of gadgets is, I think, already well-established on these pages. I love food just as well, so it was probably inevitable that I'd decide to take some food and Do Science to It. And takes pictures of myself doing it. And put up a blog post about it.

Say you want a steak cooked perfectly, edge to edge. That means bringing the internal temperature of the entire thing to exactly the right point. It's hard to do with a grill or a pan or a broiler, since those heat the outside more and the middle less, and you have to tightly control both time and temperature vs. the cut of meat.

The idea of sous-vide cooking is really simple: put the meat in an airtight, watertight vacuum bag. Plunge it into a water bath that's exactly the temperature you want. Leave it there for a few hours -- an hour plus or minus makes no difference. The devil, as usual, lies in the details -- after the jump.

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MediaWiki: Creating a Private Wiki

This article is obsolete. The instructions given will not work with current MediaWiki versions. Please refer to the updated version of this article.

MediaWiki is the software behind Wikipedia, but you can use it to create your own special-purpose sites. I've used it at work to build an internal company knowledge base, and I'm using it at home to make a Wiki for the fictional world of a roleplaying game I'm in.

It's a pretty polished software package, but out of the box it tends to assume that you are creating something like Wikipedia that is visible to (and editable by) the whole wide world. If that's not what you want, it requires some tuning, which I'll describe in detail after the jump.

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