Emacs Macros


Emacs is built on macros. Emacs gets its name from macros. E(xtensible)Mac(ro) editor. If you never used Emacs macros, time to start.

Macro usage in Emacs is pretty simple. Start macro record. Enter key sequence or combo. End macro record. Run the macro.

Start recording hit Ctrl-x (

Stop recording hit Ctrl-x )

Run macro hit Ctrl-x e

If you need to run the macro several times, try:

Ctrl-u 8 Ctrl-x e

Runs the macro 8 times. Ctrl u passes the number of iterations.

Wanna run the macro to the end of a buffer? Do:

Ctrl-u 0 Ctrl-x e (that's a zero)

You can bind macro start record, macro stop record, and macro execute to function keys, such as [F3] [F4] [F5]. If you want to execute the macro several times, its easy to press a single button.

You can bind macros to a single key. I'll update this later.



Fast Cat
Since I was a kid I've had domestic cats. Grew up with them and bought cats when I got my own place. Shared much of my life with domestic cats. For years I lived with Burmese. They are great company and great house mates.
Recently I've been fascinated with one of the big cats of which there are four. Lion, Leopard, Tiger, Cheetah.

The Lion is called king of the cats. Not in my reckoning. The Tiger's habitat is mainly India. The Panther is a tree climber. Not impressed with Lions, Tigers, or Panthers. I reserve my adoration. Of the big cats only one reigns supreme: The Cheetah.

I got interested in the Cheetah when I started research on diet and nutrition. I remember many diet books state that carbohydrates are essential for health and heavy activity. A totally uncontested premise that all athletes need carbs for strength, speed, endurance. I got thinking on this and wondered how the worlds fastest land mammal could run so fast, on a diet of zero carbs?

Cheetahs live on meat. Meat contains zero carbs. So how is this possible? The Cheetah is built for speed. Evolution has sculpted a speed machine. Everything about the cheetah says "fast". It took me a while to appreciate just how good and fine tuned this cat is.

Let me run through a few features:
  1. It is the worlds fastest land mammal. Faster than a sports car
  2. At max-speed it hits 70mph in around 3 seconds.
  3. It spine acts like a spring to thrust it forward with each stride. Its spine compresses and expands.
  4. On a chase, the cheetah spends 50% its time in mid-air.
  5. At full pace, its strides cover 7 metres, around 24 feet
  6. The Cheetah has a 50% kill rate, far higher than any other big cat
  7. Its body is streamed-lined to cut through the air.
  8. Its claws only semi-retract, unlike other cats, to aid in its predatory chase
  9. It uses its tail as a rudder to aid in direction change
  10. Normally a solo hunter, its hunting skills are taught to young cubs, not inherited
  11. Cheetah's can see prey or enemies up to 3 miles away
  12. The word Cheetah is Swahili for fast one.
  13. The cheetah has an oversize heart to pump sufficient blood and oxygen for the chase
  14. The Cheetah has oversize lungs to supply sufficient oxygen for its chase
  15. The Cheetah's ears drop when its in chase mode for an aerodynamic profile
  16. The Cheetah's head is the same width as its slim body to cut through the air with least resistance
  17. The black tear streaks below its eyes cut down reflected sun glare
  18. Cheetah's use stealth to approach their prey
  19. The Cheetah can outran/outpace any land animal
  20. The Cheetah is a sprinter not a distance runner

The Cheetah has the highest kill rate of any big cat. The Cheetah does not scavenge, instead depending on its speed and skill. The Cheetah has a kill rate around 50%, a figure no other big cat can match.

The Cheetah is very lightweight and cannot match the bulk or strength of Lions or Leopards, who often steal the Cheetah's kill (as do packs of hyenas). A Cheetah cannot afford to risk injury in a fight with other cats (or hyenas), and will forsake its kill rather than risk injury. Injured Cheetahs cannot run. Cheetahs depend on their speed and agility to catch their prey.

The Cheetah is a threatened species. 40 years ago there were around 100,000 Cheetahs in Namibia, Kenya, Sudan and Iran. The numbers have dropped to 10,000. There are Cheetahs in captivity, but they cannot save the species. Let me explain.

In the wild, the mother tutors the young in the hunt. Over the course of 18 months she trains her cubs in all the necessary techniques such as stalking, chasing, capture and killing prey. Passing on all her skills to her offspring. Cheetahs in captivity do not possess these skills. They are fed raw meat by handlers. They don't chase and kill their prey for their food.

If Cheetah numbers continue to dwindle, the species will become extinct.

Their survival hinges on the ability of the mother to pass on her hunting skills to her offspring. Once the skill is lost, the Cheetah will die out, in the wild. A great loss. A sad loss.

There's a charity in Namibia, the Cheetah Conservation Fund working to save Cheetahs in the wild. The charity tries to educate farmers, who have been the biggest threat to Cheetah numbers in Africa. The charity also treats injured Cheetahs before releasing them back into the wild.

Skip lunch one day a month an donate the cost of your big Mac to the charity. The Cheetah will thank you along with your waistline.

The Cheetah is an awesome cat. Nature's perfect speed machine. Refined over thousands of years. Man has almost destroyed them in less than 100.

Sad day.


Mature Cheddar

Hard Cheese

A few weeks back I watched Simply Italian on Channel 4. A cooking programme, hosted by Michela Chiappa. She showed how to make pasta (not much interest) and then continued to prepare the rest of the Italian dish. To finish, she topped the dish with grated Parmesan Cheese.

Michela suggested if you didn't have Parmesan or couldn't afford it, you could use Cheddar. She explained her Grandmother would leave Cheddar stand for about three weeks till it was hard and dry, to use as a replacement for Parmesan. Parmesan is so damned expensive,

I bought some mature Cheddar, removed the wrapper, stood on a plate in the cupboard and left it. I tasted the Cheddar after three days. Wow. Awesome.

If you're a cheese lover, you need to try this.

Leaving the Cheddar stand, enhances the cheese flavour. It gets stronger and richer. Totally amazing.

My first attempt lasted three days. I couldn't stop eating it. Second attempt lasted five days. Again, it was too tasty. My third attempt is now at seven days, but I keep sneaking bits to sample.

Leave the cheese on a plate, exposed to the air. The cheese will 'sweat' a little. Mop it up with kitchen towel.

According to Michela, after three weeks it should be hard enough and dry enough to grate on your favourite dish. Wonderful.



Chickens are wonderful creatures. I love to eat chicken. I love to eat eggs. Chickens make the world a better place. I love them.

The domestic chicken was derived from the Red Jungle Fowl, a wild bird originating in Asia.


There's a great charity here in the UK helping to rehabilitate freed commercial battery hens. After a period of enforced egg-laying, some are freed. The charity finds homes for the girls, who make wonderful pets.

When the chickens are liberated from the egg-factory prison, they are invariably undernourished, atrophied with loss of plumage. It takes a few weeks for the chickens to get back to full health, re-grow their feathers and start laying naturally again.

Chickens will keep your lawn free of bugs as they feed on them, and as a bonus you'll get one or two eggs a day. Don't ya wish your other pets were as generous.

Take a look at the site.





If you haven't heard of Epigenetics, here are two YouTube videos to bring you up to speed.

Its a new branch of Genetics that promises great possibilities for overcoming disease, ill health and opens the possibility of developing physical strength.

Take a look at the vids and see what ya think.

The potential is enormous.


Aral Sea


I came across a story of the Aral Sea, and found it hard to believe, but its true. The Aral Sea is almost dry. At one time, one of the four largest lakes in the world.

Photograph's on the right show aerial views of the Aral Sea in 1988 and 2009. The dark green patch shows the area covered by water. The image on the far right shows the water content in 2009.

Much of the water has been diverted for irrigation or dammed to produce hydro-electric power.

Its frightening to consider how such a vast body of water can disappear in 20 years.

Some photos to bring home the extent of the devastation.

Abandoned fishing vessels.

Desert boats.


More Diabetes

Another Hit

I came across this the other day and felt I had to do a follow up post. Its about Feline Diabetes. Here's a link to the article and an excerpt:

About Feline Diabetes and Gum Disease By Amanda Thompson

Cats with diabetes or periodontal disease are both at risk for developing gingivitis-stomatitus. Feline gum disease, also known as periodontal disease is a disease of the tissues that surround and support a cat's teeth. In cats, it is the most common oral condition. Most cats over 2 years of age suffer from some form of this disease. Feline diabetes, also known as diabetes mellitus is a disease caused by a lack of the hormone insulin or an inadequate response to insulin. Symptoms of Feline Diabetes A cat with diabetes may experience weight loss, increased thirst, increased urination, weakness or lethargy. In addition, she may have a poor coat. Causes of Feline Diabetes Some cats are more prone to developing diabetes than others. Pet Place notes, "Risk factors for diabetes mellitus include obesity, recurring pancreatitis, Cushing's disease, and drugs such as glucocorticoids and progestagens that antagonize insulin."


Your probably shocked and wondering how a feline can develop diabetes?

That's an easy one to answer. Feed the cat sugar. What isn't so easy to answer is why cat food manufacturers put sugar in their products to cause diabetes?

Cats are carnivores. They live on meat. Their digestive systems are designed to work with meat. If you start putting other non-flesh products into their bodies, they will develop problems.

I the wilds of Africa and Asia, wild cats of all sizes live on meat. They kill and consume flesh.

Here in the enlightened West, we buy tins of cat food which contain as little as 4% meat. These are top brand names, such as Whiskas, ...

Check out the ingredients on ur tin of cat food. I tried, but none were listed. In the UK where I live, ya have to list ALL ingredients on any product sold for human consumption. (includes drinks). But when it comes to animals, the ingredients are a little harder to ascertain.

Here's a list of ingredients in a Whiskas product, listed by weight:


Ground Yellow Corn, Chicken By-product Meal, Corn Gluten Meal, Animal Fat (Preserved with BHA/BHT), Natural Poultry Flavor, Wheat Flour, Rice, Brewers Dried Yeast, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Turkey By-product Meal, Caramel Color, Calcium Carbonate, dl-Methionine, Taurine, Trace Minerals (Zinc Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Potassium Iodide), White Fish Meal, Vitamins (dl-Alpha Tocopherol)

Ingredients are listed by weight, which basically means how much of it is in the food. What's the first ingredient?

Ground Yellow Corn - Corn? We're feeding our obligate carnivores a diet made up mostly of CORN now? Oh geez. Not to mention that corn is a common pet food allergen and generally a low quality ingredient you never want to see in your pet food, let alone as the FIRST ingredient!

Chicken By-product Meal - A meal means that the water has been removed. It's been dehydrated. That's fine. However, by-products are /not/ fine. By-products can mean anything that isn't meat... including beaks, feet, and feathers. Yuck!

Corn Gluten Meal - More corn products!?

Animal Fat (Preserved with BHA/BHT) - Animal fat. They don't even tell us what animal it's from! And it's preserved with synthetic preservatives that have been linked to cancer!

I won't go into the rest of the ingredients, but we have more LOW QUALITY grains (wheat is another common pet food allergen!), and some more by-products.

Here's a link to where I found this info:


Whiskas as a brand is owned by the mars corporation. They are confectioners. Sugar. Chocolate. Think they have your cats health at heart?

Cats are not designed to consume corn-by-products or any other grains. Their digestive systems cannot handle all the sugar. Cats and dogs like humans are heading fast-track down the diabetes highway.

If you love your cat (or dog), give them meat. Go to the local butcher and buy scraps. That's what evolution built them on. Yeah meat. Sounds strange, but thats the way it works. Cats and dogs are carnivores. They live on the flesh of other animals. Not corn-syrup or wheat-by-products. Stop feeding your cat the tinned cat-food garbage and give them meat.

Cats develop diabetes in exactly the same way humans do, too much sugar in the blood. The pancreas can't keep up and quits. To fix the problem, reduce blood sugar and the disease will go away. You don't need all that insulin if your carb or sugar intake is low. Meat and fats contain zero carbohydrates. Your pancreas will be eternally grateful.

Then there's all that nonsense about dried cat food being good for their teeth, and how it cleans cats teeth.  What? After eating corn chips, potato chips, how clean do your teeth feel? NOT!

Here's a link to a site dedicated to cat diabetes. They peddle the same solution as the medical profession does for humans. Take drugs and have a crap life.

They also peddle the same nonsense. Weight-gain causes diabetes. What? Try the inverse. Diabetes causes weight-gain. And the reason you get weight-gain is cos of all the insulin.


Google cat diabetes and you'll see how commonplace it is.

Cats in the wild DO NOT GET DIABETES. Diabetes is a disease of civilisation.

Just about done. But will probably update this in a few days when I get time.