The rumors of my being slashdotted are greatly exaggerated — or at least perpetuated in denial by me. Imagine my surprise when I noticed this article on Slashdot. It mentions a “tech writer” named “David Gilbert.” This might be one of the few times I directly mention my name on the blog … but it’s important here. David, it seems writes for the International Business Times.
I can’t get an exact bead on the organization. It claims to have “international newsrooms” all over the world, but their addresses could easily be simply some reporter’s house. I strongly suspect it’s a UK organization since my Firefox plugin that prevents scripts from running exposes the default for the edition selection widget is “UK.”
I don’t terribly often Google myself. If I do, I usually crack out a secure browser or even TOR. Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t meant they’re not after you…
It’s difficult to avoid a little schadenfreude, especially when you feel the victim is worthy. I’ve already said some of what I feel about Windows 8. So it is with a little glee that I read on Slashot that Windows 8 sales are below the low bar set by the sales of Windows Vista. We’re setting up for a Windows Fail.
Maybe there is a limit to the bull-hockey that you can shovel at people. Maybe people can realize exactly what it is that is being done to them.
Hey… there’s still hope… Happy New Year!
Fresh in from the “We Can’t Make This Stuff Up” Department, we have two news stories to share. From somewhere random in the US, we have two guys trying to launch their Christmas Tree with Rockets and from Canmore Alberta (home of “Mike, from Canmore”) we have the local R.C.M.P rewarding drivers caught on camera doing the speed limit with a lottery for a (we’re assuming Tim’s) gift card. Both stories deal vaguely with “speed” … so I even have a focus keyword! Hit “more” to get to a video of a Christmas Tree Rocket! Continue reading
Secure Boot should be Restricted Boot
The folks over at GNU have a petition up regarding UEFI Secure Boot. Before those of you who don’t read my computer technical articles flip away: consider that this is very important and that I will try to minimize the technical details. At the very least, please go sign the petition which states, in part, that you will not buy or recommend buying any computer that incorporates this technology. Continue reading
Do we really need advertising? Put more pointedly, do we really need the portion of our industry that connives to convince us to buy things? These questions came to mind while listening to the CBC radio news story today decrying that for each dollar of income, Canadians spent $1.63 and that this figure was perilously close to the figure for the US just before the most recent mortgage crisis. Continue reading
The New Steering Gear
Before returning to the steps for the repair, this bit could be effectively subtitled, “Repair failed, Pause for Christmas.” At the very last step of the re-assembly, we stripped a fitting, so we’ll be re-removing the Steering Gear and re-installing another Steering Gear. We can’t even get started on that, however, until we talk to the parts people tomorrow. You can see the first part of the repair here. Continue reading
LED Corncob Light
I have finally exhausted my supply of incandescent light bulbs and thus decided to buy an LED corncob light. I live in Canada and for the majority of the year, the heat from a light bulb is not wasted. In addition, when the heat of a light bulb would be wasted — in the summer — light bulbs are used less as our days are long.
It could be said that I’m not a fan of fluorescent light bulbs. It’s not just the years I spent in educational institutions under their light. It’s not just that they cause computer monitors to appear to flicker (although that effect is nearly gone with new technology). Mainly, it’s that I don’t like the light they give. Continue reading
Of course somethinghas to go wrong with the truck in the few days before Christmas. This is the first of two articles that will deal with the replacement of the Steering Gear in my 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee. Here we’re going to deal with the diagnosis and the start of the repair. A future article will finish the repair (there’s real optimism for you).
I had been noticing some steering noise that I had written off as rust or lack of lubrication in the steering column (that is: the bit inside the car). On the day this got really bad, I was going to two a trailer to pick up some computer servers. When I got to the U-Haul store, it was really noisy, so I checked the power steering level. It was dry.
Since I figured it was bad to go on empty, I dashed over to the nearest Crappy Tire (and that’s a Canadian term of endearment, BTW), which was coincidentally practically across the street and bought a liter of power steering fluid (and topped it up in the CT parking lot — another Canadian Tradition). We had a good day fetching the computers during which I performed several nigh astounding trailer backing maneuvers. Note that this probably stressed the system a bit.
By the time we ended up back at the CT gas station (my partner has a CT gas card that gives 10 cents per liter), the power steering pump was dry again and I filled it again. I returned the trailer later that night and pulled the truck into the garage. There I found it again fairly low. It appeared that I needed to do this job before Christmas; sigh. Continue reading
A fair criticism of Star Trek the Motion Picture (or Star Trek 1) is that it feels more like an overlong episode than a feature movie. The vistas are epic enough, but the plot is only deserving of an episode.
I would apply the same criticism to the new reboot of Star Trek. It deals heavily with the back story of the new cast, but as plots go, it is not epic. It is not even grand — it mainly occurs in the last thirty minutes of the movie. But for new reboot of Star Trek, I would not stop the criticism there.
Given the apparent age of the actors and the gist of the plot, the Enterprise should bear the serial number NCC-90210. It’s a little beyond the pale (and labelled as absurd by other reviewers) that 20-something young adults would be given command of a starship for any reason, let alone the razor thin justification of the first movie. Even given that gift, the narrative for the second movie fails because Kirk is still captain — with any small amount of sober thought, a too-young field-promoted captain would be replaced by a more appropriate candidate at the earliest opportunity. Continue reading