Hackerific

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During the middle of January 2010, I (inadvertently) left a bluetooth inquiry scanner running for about four days. I live on a fairly busy street in Bath, so during that time I collected information on almost 1500 bluetooth gadgets, ranging from headsets and car handsfree kits, to phones, PDAs and computers. This article is about some of the patterns I’ve found in the data. But first, some background. Bluetooth enquiry scans can provide a huge amount of information about discoverable bluetooth devices.

The OUI Database

Most networking hardware uses some kind of hardware address. Typically comprised of 6 hexadecimal octets. The first three octets comprise the OUI, or organisationally unique identifier, which identifies the manufacturer. On my MacBook, for example, the MAC address of the ethernet adapter starts with 00:19:E3, and VMWare’s virtual interface starts with 00:50:56. The mappings between code and company are managed by the IEEE, and the OUI database is available for download from the IEEE.

Recently, I’ve been working on moving my blog to GitHub, and I’ve ported it to Jekyll. This means it should be faster and more secure than Mephisto, which was always stuck several versions behind the current release, due to countless problems uploading and keeping the features I wanted. Thankfully, I’ve found ways of keeping those features with Jekyll. It might be obvious to any past visitors that I’ve had a go at redesigning the site.

Recently, I’ve needed to write and use various Makefiles. I was disappointed to find the TM’s syntax highlighting lacking, and just not colourful enough, so I set about adding a few bits and pieces. You can find the result on GitHub. I was pleased to find that most of the official TM bundles are now there, so if you’re making small (or massive) tweaks and improvements, it’s should now be easier than ever to get your changes merged into TM proper.

After what seems to have been a super-successful macheist, I thought that now was a good time to describe my all time favourite Mac software. So, here’s a list of the best bits: the ones that I probably couldn’t live without: TextMate This is probably obvious, but an extensible editor is one very useful way of turbo charging your computing life. Once you’ve learned how to use it, you’ll find that you can automate simple jobs away, leaving you free to focus on getting things right, and done.