30 days uptime on my Linux Laptop

My Mandriva 2006.0 install on my T40 Thinkpad laptop now has 30 days of uptime, yay!

This is a personal record for my laptop, and a nice state to be in. It also means that software suspend has survived ~ 60 suspends in a row, given that I average 2 a day in moving my laptop around.

While Linux still has plenty of issues in a Laptop environment, I have to say that I'm quite pleased on the state that I'm functioning in now. 🙂

Products for the Police State

Welcome to living in the Police State. To ensure your continued enjoyment of constant surveillance, might I suggest a few key products.

First we have our ATT phone card. It has the advantage of routing all your calling information directly to the NSA, so you need not worry about whether you should call the NSA yourself every month to register all your phone conversations.

For those that don't quite subscribe to the view point that All Your Base Are Belong to NSA, we've got a custom door mat that you might appreciated.

The Salmon of Doubt

The latest book on my audio book list, is The Salmon of Doubt, by Douglas Adams. I'm about 1/2 way through after listening to it mostly on the plane back and forth to Madison this past weekend.

While I've always been a fan of Douglas Adams for the Hitch Hikers books, and I was missing his comic brilliance last year when listening to the original radio dramas, I never fully realize how much of a man of science Douglas was. The Salmon of Doubt isn't really a book, it is a collection of writings found on Douglas's hard drive after his death, which included the beginning of a new book (though I've not even gotten that far yet). But the writings are awesome. His exposition on the 4 ages of sand, and the posit of an Artificial God are just brilliant, and deeply amusing all at the same time.

Jewel quotes include the following (during his exposition on the 4 ages of sand)

. . . imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, 'This is an interesting world I find myself in, an interesting hole I find myself in, fits me rather neatly, doesn't it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!' This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, it's still frantically hanging on to the notion that everything's going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise. I think this may be something we need to be on the watch out for.

It is really a shame there won't be any more work by Adams, but at least we've got this one last bit that gives a very good window into the man that he was. Any fans of science, or comic writing, should check it out.

End of term potpourri

Last night was the exam for my grad class. It went quite well. The 2 hour test took me about 45 minutes to finish, then I went over the test 3 times, mostly to kill time and not miff everyone else in the room for leaving so early. The test was pretty straight forward, and while I'm sure I missed a few points here and there (given that I always do, I'm just not that careful about anything), I think the grade will be pretty good. That means I get back about 6 hours / week of time for the next 3 months, which is always appreciated (and needed, due to the wedding). It also means that I am now ~ 1/2 way through grad school. As long as I can get the last UG prereq dropped (which shouldn't be too much of a challenge), I've got 6 more classes (only 1 is a required class), and the network lab that I've continued to not figure out when I have time for.

I'm currently on a plane to Wisconsin to visit my friend Nick, one of my closest friends from college. It was supposed to be his graduation this week, but his thesis took a little more time than anticipated. Such is life. It actually makes the visit much nicer, as there won't be quite so many different pulls on Nick's time while I'm there, and hopefully it means He, Heather (his fiancee), and I will get much chill time together.

My team of interns start arriving on Monday. I'm really looking forward to having 4 bright students, and a hard problem, and seeing what happens with a little direction. It's also something new, having never led an intern team before, and new is always good.

Wedding planning is coming along. Susan and I finally have some food options, and that is a very good thing. 🙂 We had a good talk with Steve Warner, who will be officiating the wedding last weekend. Steve is a family friend from as far back as I can remember, a really funny guy, and a justice of the peace in Granville, VT, where I was born, grew up, met Susan for the first time, and where we'll get married. That last thought just occurred to me last night, and think very clearly has to be part of the material for the wedding itself. I also seem to have fixed whatever Google didn't like about the wedding website, so now "dague wedding" or "tveekrem wedding" is showing up correctly as the first hit. Given the uniqueness of both of our names, you are almost going to have to try to not find the site. 😉

The whole ppp over sprint phone thing, has me rather excited. It means I'll have to play with getting IMAP up and running on my home box, as while the through put seems pretty good (140 kbs range on a long wget), the latency is very high (min 350 ms to google.com). My normal method of sshing into my home box to do mutt in screen isn't going to cut it over that link.

Lastly I just finished listening to How to Make Love the Bruce Cambell Way, which was awesome, and started listening to The Salmon of Doubt, the set of Douglas Adams post mortem essays that were pulled together a few years back. Really, really, good.

Yay, mobile interweb

I'm sitting in Stewart airport at the moment, happily connected to ye olde interweb over my Sprint PCS phone. While this might not be exciting to most folks, this is the first time I've gotten around to trying to make this work in the year since I've had the phone. There are pretty good instructions for getting this to work on an older sanyo model, and sprint, and other than moving a couple files around to match how Mandriva lays them out vs. Debian, everything was good.

Well, at least it was after I remembered to tell my firewall about ppp interfaces, as it was dropping all my packets because they were on an unclassified network. 😉

Long airport waits are going to be a heck of a lot better now. I'm pretty psyched!

Stop the DRM Madness!

In the near future, media will be revolutionized by the introduction of HD-DVD and Blu-ray, the successors of the DVD. These two will be able to carry movies in much higher resolutions, dramatically improving image quality on your HDTV or monitor. This is what we all know. What most of us don't know is that it's going to cost you thousands of dollars extra to actually be able to enjoy these high definition movies!

Interested? Want to prevent this from happening? Enter the world of DRM Madness!

Sign the petition on http://www.drmadness.com/index.php. Will an internet petition help... maybe not. But maybe if enough people realize how they are about to get bent over by the media industry, they'll reconsider dropping a couple of Gs on new HD equipment.

Vote with your wallet, don't buy HD!

The coolest Civic that I'll never be able to buy

Doesn't that look cool! Honda did a concept car for a 2005 motor show which is a cool evolution of the die hard civic. Unlike most concept cars, they actually decided to start making this one, and selling it in Europe. The Top Gear guys just reviewed it, and they really liked it. You can check out more information at the Honda UK site

The problem is, they are making it in Europe. And given how our currency is in the tank right now, odds of it coming state side are pretty low. 🙁 In a year, I'll be starting to think about a new car to replace my 1998 Civic (bought it new, 8 years old now, 105k miles), and got my hopes up for just a second that this might actually be the 2007 Civic in the US. But, alas, the gods of crappy economy have busted our hopes again.

Carter spotting!

I was just watching How I Met Your Mother, and as the paramedics ran in for the first scene, I realized one of them looked freakily familiar.

... Damn, that's Carter! and, wait, the other one is Craig!

Granted it is their show, but none the less, it was cool regardless. 🙂