Archiv der Kategorie: General

The British …

Via Boing Boing:

Eine Show mit Rebecca Loos, der SMS-Gespielin von David Beckham, in der sie einen Eber mit der Hand zum Samenerguss brachte, war Gegenstand einer Untersuchung des British Office of Communications. Die Untersuchung wurde jetzt ohne Beanstandung abgeschlossen.

Die perfekt britische Begründung: „We don’t believe that the scene was degrading or harmful to the boar.“

Interesting developments

I’ve publicly admitted that I’m quite a fan of Cory Doctorow. So it will hardly come as a surprise that I’m also on his mailing list. Today, he sent out a piece of mail that’s also appeared on Boingboing: Cory Offline. This got me thinking.

This piece of e-mail (and blog posting) to me is much more than just the fact that the man now is finally in a position to take a probably much-deserved vacation. But I also find it interesting that he announces that so very publicly. I’ve hardly ever seen an artist who is in such a tight loop with a global audience—assuming that questions on his whereabouts would pop up had he just gone on holidays without the announcement.

Mr Doctorow is quite the internet figure: He’s well-connected and has a clear grasp of what current trends are, both technically and socially—in applications and in legal matters. He’s a prolific writer who not only produces interesting daily content, he also has a sharp mind in developing the current state of affairs further and writing great books about it. He’s influential in shaping where things are going by virtue of working for the EFF. And now, he’s even accountable for where he is. Publicly.

To me, at least, this gives a new meaning to what being an internet celebrity is.

Fascinating stuff.

Sysadmin day, II

Continuing sysadmin day, we replaced the trusted but already old DSL router with a new piece of hardware. Until today, our DSL line was handled by an ISA-based 486 machine with 600mb of disk that contains a kernel compiled Aug 8, 2001. Original installation of that system (with NetBSD back then, too) was in 1999; hardware was basically unchanged since. And even today, the system has an uptime of 112 days—it’s been up since the last power failure we had.

But as we’re currently investigating VPN solutions and a few other changes to our local network, the time has come to put that machine (aptly named ’speedy‘) to rest. We took delivery of the new Draytek 2900 that replaces it last week and on sysadmin day today, I installed it. So this is already posted via that new router. Configuration was fairly straightforward (but then, it’s not the first Draytek thing I had my hands on) and went smoothly; our offline time was less than five minutes.

It’s still somewhat of an odd feeling to power down speedy, though. I haven’t yet done that.

Sysadmin day

Today was another sysadmin day. Our primary fileserver at the office has been running out of space for some time now—hardly surprising, with the shared filesystem being only 40GB. It had been running RAIDframe in a RAID1 configuration quite happily, but new tasks for the machine also made an update advisable. So we got a wonderful Serial ATA Enclosure Kit by Adaptec, which includes a decent SATA RAID controller and a 4 disk Hotswap-Enclosure.

Last week, I installed a new version of NetBSD onto the disks in the enclosure on another system and we copied the latest versions of all files on the server onto the new set yesterday. Today was the big day: first thing in the morning, I shut down the fileserver, we ripped out the old disks and installed the new controller and disks. It turns out that installing the enclosure is a bit of a hassle in our 19″ machine, but it worked out in the end. At the same time, we also replaced the crappy Realtek ethernet card that still was in that machine with a decent Intel Pro/1000 that, amongst other things, can do checksum offloading.

And after booting and configuring the servers IP address, lo and behold, everything worked! Fixing up the configuration with the things I had forgotten last week took about half an hour, and even during that time, the crucial services had all been restored.

After a workday of having the ’new‘ system up and running, I’m decently happy with the thing. I still have the sore fingers from all the mucking around with non-fitting hardware, but other than that, things just work.

Praktisch, praktisch, praktisch

Ich verlinkte zwar schon drauf, finde aber, dass es noch einer extra Erwähnung not tut: Presseportal ist eine sehr handliche Übersicht für Pressemitteilungen der verschiedensten Stellen, Verlautbarungen und Firmen, und das alles auch mit schönen RSS-Feeds. So findet sich ein Feed der Polizei Aachen, in dem man die Aussendungen der lokalen Polizei schön zusammengefasst hat; das ganze gibts natürlich auch für viele andere Städte.

When I grow up, I want to be …

a writer. I’ve always had a fascination with writing. I’ve always dreamt of writing. There’s much I like about it: The feeling of the fingers touching the keyboard, seing the screen fill with my thoughts and ideas, being able to bring them into the minds of other people. I also like the idea of people getting to know me through reading my stuff; heck, who wouldn’t be impressed of seing some of his work printed or being asked questions about things one wrote? So far, more of my experience in writing is in code. Most of the time, I like writing code, but I’d also like to write prose. I still have the impression that they’re somehow related (or at least, some kinds of programming are related to some kinds of writing).
My problem is just that I have so little ideas. Or rather, I have some ideas but am seldomly happy with the way they turn out. I seem to be unable to develop them into more than just static vignettes. Character development? What’s that? But maybe it’s a matter of focus and discipline. So far, I’ve always written down in one run, more stream of consciousness than anything else. But maybe the trick is just to sit down a certain times and continue doing the thing.

Der Drucker.

Er ist immer noch nicht da, der Oki. Wir haben ihn schon vor ein paar Wochen bestellt, aber bei den ganzen Distributoren wird der Liefertermin verschoben und verschoben. Also habe ich bei Oki in Düsseldorf angerufen … Ende August hat man mir gesagt, man sei gerade dabei, etwas an der Produktreihe zu verändern. Naja. Auch schon bessere Informationspolitik erlebt.

Gerade noch ein paar Wortfetzen von Guido Westerwelle bei zur Kerry-Rede gesehen. Entspannter wirkt er seit seinem Outing.

Freundlichkeit kennt keine Grenzen!

Wir sind gerade dabei, (Ursulas Onkel) Heinz bei der Gestaltung eines Buches zu unterstützen. Wir haben im beim Layout geholfen, heute sollte es darum gehen, wie das fertige Buch nun gebunden wird.

Die Buchbinderin, die wir aufsuchten, wollte offensichtlich unseren Auftrag nicht.

Es wäre so einfach gewesen. Wir wären leicht zu begeistern gewesen. Es hätte nur etwas Freundlichkeit und Interesse gebraucht. Wir fanden aber Lustlosigkeit und Langweile. Wir hatten ein Probeexemplar mit, das wir nur mal eben im Copyshop hatten binden lassen – wir hätten also alle Entscheidungen direkt vor Ort treffen können. Nein, auf die Frage nach dem Preis für 40 Stück hörten wir „Da müssten wir dann noch mal verhandeln.“ Ja, ehrlich? Wann denn, wenn nicht jetzt?

Scheinbar gibt es, dem generellen Gejammere um die wirtschaftliche Situation Deutschlands trotzend, noch Geschäfte, die keine neuen Kunden brauchen – wir werden jedenfalls dort keinen Auftrag hintragen.

Und zu allem Überfluss wurde ich dann heute auch noch versetzt.