(   )
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                           (  (                  /\
                            (_)                 /  \  /\
                    ________[_]________      /\/    \/  \
           /\      /\        ______    \    /   /\/\  /\/\
          /  \    //_\       \    /\    \  /\/\/    \/    \
   /\    / /\/\  //___\       \__/  \    \/
  /  \  /\/    \//_____\       \ |[]|     \
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/      \      /XXXXXXXXXX\                  \
        \    /_I_II  I__I_\__________________\
               I_I|  I__I_____[]_|_[]_____I
               I_II  I__I_____[]_|_[]_____I
               I II__I  I     XXXXXXX     I
            ~~~~~"   "~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Fri, 18 Jan 2019

Comments on Perl

Ratfactor talks about learning Perl [0][1] - the language I know best and one that has proven immensely useful to me over the years in my IT career as a network jockey, developer, and sysadmin. Perl has a bad rap of late, it had its heyday in the late 90's and early 2000's, but now it seems to be less popular than Python as a general-purpose scripting language. I see nothing wrong with using Perl if it gets the job done. Many of the criticisms of Perl are still founded in the late 90's boom when there really was some horrific Perl written and distributed (Matt's script archive was one of the worst offenders), but those days are long gone and Modern Perl [2] as it's known is quite a different beast. Ratfactor mentions 'Minimal Perl' - a great book that is still on my bookshelf and a great read for any Unix aficionado who likes to fiddle with sed, awk, find and the like. Give Perl a try!

posted at: 10:01 | path: / | permalink | awk, modern-perl, perl, sed

Tue, 06 Nov 2018

Email Providers and Pubnix

Cdmnky talks about email providers [0][1]. I tried protonmail briefly but deleted my account, it seemed to me to be a bit gimmicky, and less than useful without direct imap support.

I use and heartily recommend posteo.de. 1 euro a month is a small price to pay for secure, stable and privacy-conscious email that is not hosted in the USA. Despite spending more than that on SDF Meta membership, I don't use SDF email for anything critical. It's too unstable.

read more after the break...

posted at: 12:33 | path: / | permalink | email, posteo, pubnix, sdf

Sat, 06 Oct 2018

Systemd and Gopher Tags

I'm so fed up with systemd. I tried recently to install gophernicus on my home workstation, Debian 8 (Jesse) - the first release they switched to systemd. Somehow the installer sets up a listening gopher server on IPv6 only, and the systemd interface is completely broken. I don't even want to spend the time to debug it, the CLI interface and config file layout is so awful. I think I'll install Devuan and say goodbye to systemd.

Solderpunk writes about tagged gophers [0][1], and Jynx is right [2][3] in that my gopher phlog engine Slerm [4] supports tags and tag searches natively. I agree a tag-search facility outside of any given client would be very useful, a nice middle ground between full-text and selector searches. Speaking of full-text search, I have a prototype of a full-text search engine I wanted to bolt onto Slerm, but I never finished the integration. Maybe I'll do that one of these days.

posted at: 18:24 | path: / | permalink | debian, devuan, gopher, slerm, systemd, tags

Sun, 10 Jun 2018

CLI Translation Utility

I came across a great command line translation utility 'translate shell' [0]. It provides a script 'trans', which is written in pure bash and gives an interface to the most popular online translation sites (by default it will use Google translate). Here is an example of it translating one of my recent French langyage posts. The translation is pretty accurate, at least enough to convey the meaning. It has loads of options and I could see it being used to facilitate a gopher-based translation site.

read more after the break...

posted at: 21:50 | path: / | permalink | cli, commandline, language, translation

Mon, 02 Apr 2018

Attention and Atheism

Solderpunk shared a link to an article on getting your attention back [0][1], I agree it was not very insightful. But it made me think of how digital books can sometimes impact attention negatively, at least for me.

read more after the break...

posted at: 13:59 | path: / | permalink | atheism, attention-span, community, religion

Thu, 15 Mar 2018

Remembering Prepping

Hurricane Katrina was a wakeup call for many Americans, our family included. I lived in Connecticut at the time, with a wife and two young children. The realization that if there was a disaster, natural or otherwise, you were largely on your own was sobering. We endeavored to prep, as it were, and over the course of several years we built up a cache of storage food, water and essentials.

read more after the break...

posted at: 13:12 | path: / | permalink | hurricane, prepping, self-sufficiency

Thu, 01 Mar 2018

Attention Span

Attention span and patience seem to be directly related. When I do finally get in the zone I get interrupted by others who themselves have no patience and demand immediate attention. This can be as innocuous as a text message, which now means "Hey, reply to me within 60 seconds or I will text you repeatedly until you do reply", or it can be someone stopping by your desk to ask a question. It seems to be generational - that is, my kids are more likely to exhibit this behavior than my older friends, but I also see it at work. It's even worse there, as you are expected to reply to IM's or texts immediately. What I do now is IM my manager and tell him that I'm going offline for a bit for lunch or whatever, to set the expectation that I won't be responding right away.

posted at: 12:33 | path: / | permalink | attention-span, technology

Fri, 16 Feb 2018

I Miss the Eighties

With apologies to my younger readers.

I miss the 80s. I spent my formative years in the 80s, in the US. I went to high school, got my first computer, had sex for the first time, started driving, got drunk for the first time, got high for the first time, had my first girlfriend, and went away to college (not necessarily in that order).

Of course people will accuse me of looking back with rose-colored glasses. What was bad about the 80s? Let's see...recession, high interest rates...mullets...expensive long distance phone calls...gas prices...Reagan, Challenger...still I can't say that since then we haven't been through equally fucked-up decades. Hell, the one we're in right now is one for the record books.

read more after the break...

posted at: 21:46 | path: / | permalink | 80s, eighties, nostalgia, retro

Tue, 16 Jan 2018

Pale Blue Dot

I've been keeping a low profile lately as post-holiday work has been a bear and I've not had the motivation to write. But I'm catching up on things today and saw a phost by gunnarfrost that caught my eye [0][1]. He mentions the view of earth from space and how this has shaped our philosophical views of the meaning of life. This made me think of Carl Sagan's the 'Pale Blue Dot' [2], which is about the view of Earth from Voyager I, seen as a tiny speck from about six million kilometers away. Here is the quote:

read more after the break...

posted at: 12:48 | path: / | permalink | pale-blue-dot, sagan

Tue, 02 Jan 2018

Thoughts on Pseudo-Anonymity

Solderpunk talks about pseudonymity [0][1] and the issues surrounding it. Thankfully I do not recall ever reading that bit of bad advice by Eric Raymond.

read more after the break...

posted at: 10:23 | path: / | permalink | privacy, pseudo-anonymity, sdf

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