Monthly Archives: July 2008

So, no, not dead.

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The last few weeks have had me very busy – even into my weekends (gotta love needy customers)

So I will ply you with pictures!

Cutting because I love your bandwidth!

We Crawl

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Yeah, this video premiered six months ago – so in Internet Time, it is *old*. But one of my co-workers is a friend of Tim and Julie and got me turned on to the band.

So I wanted to share this song as it is one that really hits home. Not to mention that the concept for the video is a very cool one. Here are the details for how the video was created.

“We Crawl,” featured on the band’s The Fragile Army, was a unique production. Video cameras, film and loose instructions were sent to all 23 members of the band. The band shot all of the footage themselves. Hundreds of hours of footage were sent to Harper who crafted the video. It features band leaders Tim DeLaughter and Julie Doyle with their family in an intimate and rare look at the usually hyper-dramatic Spree.

Woo! My Excel-Fu is still good!

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Boss had a problem he had to document. Our monitoring system will Who linked what alerts to what ticket when, but it does not do it in the most friendly way.

In fact, it can be rather hostile at times. Witness this:

There was a ticket that had over the course of its existance, 200 separate linkages done by different people. But that is not 200 alerts, that was actually 422 alerts as when someone linked an alert they might link anywhere from one to ten alerts in a single action.

My boss had to determine how many separate alerts were linked per action. But when the monitoring system coughs up the data into excel, each separate link action is a single row. And that cell could contain one linkage, or potentially up to ten linkages.

So my boss was going to have to manually read all 200 cells and count the number of times that the phrase “Linked Alert” appeared.

Like so (data sanatized for everyone’s protection)

******* *****: Linking ----------Linked Alert: #17901616----------Item: ***.***.***.***Monitor: PingMonitorMessage: 0----------Linked Alert: #17901627----------Item: ***.***.***.***Monitor: PingMonitorMessage: 0----------Linked Alert: #17901617----------Item: ***.***.***.***Monitor: PingMonitorMessage: 0----------Linked Alert: #17901629----------Item: ***.***.***.***Monitor: PingMonitorMessage: 0----------Linked Alert: #17901614----------Item: ***.***.***.***Monitor: PingMonitorMessage: 0----------Linked Alert: #17901615----------Item: ***.***.***.***Monitor: PingMonitorMessage: 0 

As you can guess, that would really suck. So I reminded my boss that fifteen years ago, before I got into the server end of things, I used to support both end user and developer dren. Including writing VB and VBA code, as well as some rather complex formulas in Excel.

So I sat down and cranked up the brain power and a little while later, I produced this gem of a formula.

=(SUM(LEN($c2))-SUM(LEN(SUBSTITUTE($c2,"Linked Alert",))))/LEN("Linked Alert")

It scans the content of a cell looking for the case sensitive string “Linked Alert” and counts up the number of unique instances of that phrase.

What would have taken several hours was done in about 30 minutes.

I so rule.

(Oh, and if you are interested – for the 200 cells of linkage data? There were 422 separate instances of “Linked Alert”s.)

RRrrrrrrr

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Trout!

Man I love this show . . .

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MiddleMan is carrying the head that Dubbie had ripped off of the training android.

WW: “So, did I ace it, or did I *ace* it?”

MM: “There’s acing it and then there is what you did. Kind of like shooting a cow with a howetzer.”

WW: “I would never shoot a cow.”

MM: “Have you considered that you may have taken out some of your personal emotions on that poor little guy?”

WW: “That ‘poor little guy’ put a bomb in my city! Don’t get on my case for Jack Bauering the thing!”

MM: “You gave in to blind rage and destroyed a valuable piece of training equipment. Violence is always the MiddleMan’s last resort.”

Pardon the rant, but this was frustrating.

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Dear Apple,

I know that it is “Steve Knows Best” but really now. When you make a “zero-config” network device, then keep in mind that there are THREE non-routable IP address ranges, not two. (See RFC 1918 – Address Allocation for Private Internets).

Just as a reminder, the three reserved, non-routable, private networks are:

10.0.0.0 – 10.255.255.255
172.16.0.0 – 172.31.255.255
192.168.0.0 – 192.168.255.255

There is nothing more annoying than having to re-ip your private network when you try to install a device and discover that even though it is supposed to configure itself via DHCP, that it for some strange reason, will not make itself available to your softare if it is on a 172.16/12 network.

Add to that the fact that when you go to the Apple support site and spend an hour+ trying every potential grouping of keywords in searches, hoping to find a tech article that would explain either (1) how to manually set up the device for a specific private network, or (2) why there is no support for a known, standard IP range.

Why do I “know” that it had to be the IP range I was using you ask? Because after hitting my head against the wall for several hours this weekend, I pop the device onto a “mini” network (router + laptop + device, not connected to the rest of my network) that was IPed with the 10/8 network and lo and behold, it appears and talks with no problems. I then reconfiged the mini network for 192.168/16 and again, it works, but when facted with a 172.16/12, it remained stubbornly offline.

If you make a device auto-config only and give people no way to manually config it, then unless you allow for ALL of the standard options, you FAIL.

No love,

David

One thing I have learned this weekend.

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Walking in the morning is much, much, muchness better than walking in the afternoon or evening.

Walked to the grocery store (about half a mile from where I live) yesterday afternoon. BIG MISTAKE as it hit 101 F/39 C (Heat Index of 103 F / 40 C) while I was doing so. Couple this with the wonderful humidity that comes from living next to a lake, and well, it was miserable.

In case you are interested, this is the rather short walking path to the shopping center for the grocery store We cut because we care

It just sank in.

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Ths Hubble Space Telescope is 18 years old now.

There are people starting college this fall who were born after it went into orbit.

And I can remember getting to stay up late with my parents to watch the Lunar landing and Neil Armstrong‘s amazing first steps.

Dammit.

(a) I’m old. But I guess that is better than the alternative.

(b) Why am I not up there?

OK – As gramalkin said

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This actually would tempt me to get a tattoo.

And if I ran into this guy, I would have to stop what I was doing to shake his hand.

So anyway

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This has been an interesting day so far (in the Chinese sense)

I got up early this morning to start my “new” personal schedule off right.

Changed into gym gear, went and worked out for 30 minutes, came back home, got cleaned up and ready for work and headed out the door.

Got to the end of the block and had to turn around.

Why? Because I had left my badge.

Went back, got the badge, left again.

Got to the end of the block and yet again, had to turn around.

This time? I had left my wallet.

So again, I went back home, got my wallet, and headed out again.

Got to the end of the block and, you guessed it, turned around again.

The crackberry this time.

Went back home, got it, left again.

Got to the end of the block, to realize I had left my phone and my sunglasses add on when I grabbed the crackberry.

At that point, I was late for the train.

So, cursing my stupidity, I went on to the train station, caught the next train, and got to the Perl street station just as the shuttle was pulling away.

(I said a bad word to myself then).

So I had a fifteen minute wait for the next shuttle to show up.

So yeah. Ten minutes late to work, frustrated with myself beyond belief, and I swear, if one more thing happens today, I am going to bed.

Einstein Quote of the Day

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As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain; and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.

Wrong, just wrong

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I just got the most WTF subject line ever for gay pr0n spam –

“Come celebrate the Red, White, and Goo”

Cool things this morning

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Well the commute was great! I so enjoy not driving, and two brisk one block walks are not bad at all – even in the Dallas steambath (well, I guess that the fact I am not dying from that comes from the fact that I can work in shorts and a short sleeved shirt – if I had to wear slacks, a business shirt, and light forbid, a tie I might want to consider keeling over dead considering that it was already 85 degrees at 7:45 this morning – thank you 65% humidity)

That having been said – I have some cool for this morning.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you, the mecha-xenomorph!

Brought to you by MAKE Magazine.

And just for toxico – because, well, when I saw this I thought of you immediately.

The Russian Xenomorph/Dragon Car – also brought to you by MAKE Magazine!

And one more thing from MAKE this morning – It seems some MIT students are making some cool 12 foot parabolic solar collectors.

Now why this makes me happy is because it stimulates my Inner Mad Scientist. Because this is the first stage of designing a Solar Death Ray! These solar collectors are really quite powerful, if you put a thermal probe at the point where the sunlight is concentrated, you will find that it can heat the probe up to 1100 degrees Fahrenheit in just a about a minute.

Now some people out on California have also made their own solar death ray – and put it to a rather innovative use: a hotdog cooker. It is things like this that make me want to go to Burning Man at least once.

Oh my!

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“I can’t tell you what I am thinking right now.”

– – – Captain Jack Harkness

OK – aside from that, I am waiting a few days to say what I want to say about the season end of Doctor Who. For those who have not seen it, rest assured that comment is 100% Jack.

I am so glad I don't work for a media company

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YouTube Ordered to Turn Over All User Records to Viacom

YouTube users may have lost some of their privacy now that a judge has ordered its parent company Google to surrender every YouTube user’s name, IP address and viewing history to Viacom. Read More Here

At least Viacom didn’t get one thing they wanted – The court denied Viacom’s requsted copies of all videos tagged as private. Of course, this is the company that gave us BET and MTV – so what do you expect?

So, I guess I should start avoiding all Viacom brands wherever possible.

In case you are wondering – these are the brands.

BET Networks
MTV Networks
AtomFilms
AddictingGames
CMT
Comedy Central
GameTrailers
Harmonix
Logo
Neopets
Nickelodeon
Quizilla
Rhapsody
Shockwave
Spike TV
The N
TV Land
VH1
Virtual Worlds
XFire
Paramount Pictures
Dreamworks Studios
MTV Films
Nickelodeon Movies

From a discussion last night

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Hmmmmmm….

“Gonad the Barbarian.” You know, that might be a good title for some interesting fantasy based gay bear porn.

I mean, hell. Straight pr0n has the “World of Whorecraft” so why can’t we have some fun too?

(Of course, since Blizzard unleashed the lawyers hounds, they can’t be called “World of Whorecraft” anymore – now it is simply Whore Lore.


I mean really now – with an idea like that, if it were done well, I could make a fortune!

And with that I was told that I am an evil, evil person and should not be allowed out in polite company.

No, not dead

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Not even in Jersey for that matter.

My net absence was not by choice, but rather, there existed a nasty little critter that managed to opportunistically infect an ingrown hair. End result? David feels cruddy enough that he actually goes to the doctor to see what is wrong.

And the doctor immediately says – “You sir, are being checked into the hospital.”

FAIL

And since I am one of those lucky, lucky people who is allergic to most antibiotics, the few that I am able to take tend to be very nasty, strong antibiotics that have lots of nasty side effects, and can only be administered via IV drip.

This time, I really won – I got to take 2,500 MG of Vancomycin every 12 hours.

For five days.

I finally got out of the hospital yesterday afternoon/evening, and here I am back at work. My arms are sore from the multiple IV insertions and the side effects of the vanc, but at least I am not trapped in a hospital room with little to no net access (CNN and MSNBC does not make for net access) and insanity inducing boredom.

So – how was your weekend?