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GNU is Not Unix

Journal: systemd 1

Journal by squiggleslash

Having read up on it, I don't think systemd is a bad idea. I rather like:

1. Doing away with shell scripts with huge amounts of redundant, and frequently badly written, garbage to manage starting and stopping system services.
2. Using cgroups to properly isolate, contain, and track system services.
3. Centralizing the services concept so it's network aware, rather than a separate inetd server

The major criticisms seem to be "I don't like change/I understand shell scripts" (well, true to a certain extent, but I don't think the current situation was particularly good), XML configuration (reportedly, having seen it, but yeah, XML sucks), and the developers are rude, arrogant, and assholish, which I assume means that the critics are also boycotting Linux and half a dozen other FOSS projects...

I think criticisms 1 and 2 are valid concerns and are essentially the same concern expressed twice. My belief is that there's much to be said for making configuration files as simple as possible, and to avoid manual configuration where possible. Hopefully that's what the systemd developers believe too.

User Journal

Journal: Aiming, Trigger Control, and Ferguson 4

Journal by RailGunner
When you're at the range, and you line up your shot to center mass, and you pull the trigger, where you miss is indicative of what you're doing wrong -- if it's consistent. (Some short barrel concealed carry guns are not accurate at longer ranges; they aren't intended to be, either. However, the average full size hand gun is intended to be pretty accurate.)

Here's a link to a helpful free (PDF) target that may make you a better shot.

If I miss at the range -- which is rare -- I usually miss down and to the left of the bullseye (but not by much) because I'm pulling my index finger a little too hard -- I'm tightening my fingers.

If I was in a high stress situation -- say one where a yelling, large, aggressive nearly 300 pound man is charging me, I'd probably tighten up even more and miss to the left, say, hitting the assailant in the right arm. As I continued to pull the trigger, I would likely start missing up from the recoil of the gun -- more likely if I've firing a .40 cal, which has a sharper, more upward recoil than a .45 ACP or a 9mm does. (I've shot a few .40 cals before -- I've not shot a .40 cal Sig Sauer, but I have shot a couple of Berettas and I wasn't a fan. Besides -- .45 ACP is better than .40 anyways :) )

In this regard, the autopsy result of Michael Brown tends to support the officer's account of what happened. Brown was charging him, and under stress he over tightened, and missed to his left from center mass which would be the assailant's right arm / shoulder as he likely did not take a lot, if any, time to re-sight as he was in the line of a charging bull.

The other piece of evidence is going to be the brass. If it's all in a localized area, the officer was standing still. If it's scattered, then he was running toward the assailant.

The other question, which leads into another somewhat related point: How many rounds did Officer Darren Wilson fire? His gun had a 12 round magazine (+1 in the pipe) so it's possible that he missed a few times - which wouldn't surprise me, as here's a dirty little secret:

The police do not train with their firearms enough, or even as much as the average CHL holder.

A couple of my closest friends are police officers, and I can out shoot them any day of the week and twice on Sunday. Despite their "training" I have a much tighter grouping and many, many more bulls-eyes with the same weapon than they do.

The reality is, this trend tends to hold across the general population. You are far more likely to get shot by a cop -- whether intentional or not -- than you are a legal concealed carry licensee.

Consider that little fact the next time you want to think that "only the police should have guns".

And if you are a concealed license holder -- when was the last time you practiced? Find a range and keep those skills sharp.
User Journal

Journal: Terminal Ballistics and Ferguson 10

Journal by RailGunner
One argument made on television last night by a Ferguson City Councilwoman was that the Officer used "excessive force" by shooting a 6'4", 240 pound man 6 times.

6 times! She said.

...... the ignorance is breathtaking.

Here's the reality: Remember this story of a woman hiding in her attic with her children? She shot the assailant 6 times. He survived his injuries. Link to Local News Story

I bring this up as an example to my larger point: Compared to long guns (rifles, shotguns) ALL HAND GUNS SUCK.

The woman in the story was using a .38 special, I do not know what caliber the Officer in Ferguson was carrying. I will wager an educated guess and say that most likely the officer was carrying a 9mm, as it's arguably the most popular police issue handgun. A size comparison between the .38 and the 9mm reveals that they are very, very close in size. The 9mm is faster, as the cartridge contains more powder.

Hollywood has lied to you.

When people are shot, even with the mighty .45 ACP (well, mighty for a hand gun, that is), most people do the following: They psychologically react, think, "OH MY GOD I'VE BEEN SHOT" and lay down, where they are either captured, taken to the hospital, and recover or pass out due to loss of blood pressure and bleed out. They do not fly through the air emitting a Wilhelm Scream only to be stone dead when they hit the ground.

The only way to *stop* an assailant with a hand gun, barring the psychological effects, is to hit someone in the following areas on the body: The pelvic girdle, shattering the hip bone making walking difficult if not impossible, severing the spinal cord, or a hit to the brain. Even a direct shot to the heart is not enough to stop immediately, as a person with a destroyed heart could still have anywhere from 30 to 60 seconds of combat ability before they pass out due to loss of blood pressure.

Here's what we know: According to the officer and eye witness testimony, Michael Brown was rushing the police officer, who fired. The first few shots hit the assailant's arm, and did not stop him. Finally, a shot that hit just above his eye (autopsy report) ended his life.

Far from being a cherub faced child, Michael Brown was a 6'4", 240 pound giant who had just committed a strongarm robbery of a bunch of Swisher Sweet cigars, popular for hollowing out for use with marijuana (which was found in the toxicology report).

Why are losers like Eric Holder, Al Sharpton, and other race baiting idiots involved? We have now seen two incidents where an "unarmed" black male was assaulting a police officer in one case -- breaking his orbital socket bone -- and in the other case breaking the nose of a neighborhood watch volunteer. Both were committing a felony assault when shot, and both died from their wounds. Both are now Liberal Saints, Trayvon Martin -- aka Saint Skittles, and now Michael Brown, now Saint Swisher Sweets -- who despite committing felony assaults at the time of their deaths -- and quite frankly, already received their "justice" -- were "good boys who didn't do nuffin".

Both also led to outcry and criminal trials. Much like George Zimmerman, I would normally expect Officer Wilson to be acquitted -- but with the current mob mentality, and the desire for their pound of flesh, there's no way to predict the outcome of what is now a politically charged event.

... while nary a word is said about the epidemic of black on black violence that is occurring in Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, and Washington DC -- where in many of those cases the victims, unlike Brown and Martin, were innocent.

My, how this country has fallen so far in just 6 years.
Crime

Journal: What they want you to think 6

Journal by squiggleslash

So... Brown was going to college in a few days, but he decided to rob a store beforehand because that's what undergrads do or something. But they found dope in his system, which also proves that in addition to being a violent "thug" (though not one armed with the prerequesite cola and skittles) he was also a drugged out maniac. And the store refused to call 911 because, uh, not sure, but there's probably a bad reason for it. So later when a cop happened to find him jaywalking it was probably OK to ki... no, that's too strong a word, put him to sleep, because thug.

So here's white currently suburban (and British urban anyway, so that doesn't count) me thinking none of this makes sense even if you're trying to tug at any prejudices of mine.

One problem is that Brown being on dope explains the robbery and why the store didn't feel any strong inclination to call 911. Kinda. Well, based on an experience of mine anyway. Thing is, about 25 years ago I'm buying a cheese and onion sandwich from a newsagent in Oxford. In walks a (white, FWIW) man who is obviously stoned. Student probably. Tries to find something to eat, and then has an argument with the store owner who (1) wants him to wait until he's finished serving me and (2) wants him to pay. "Dope fiend" (heh) then loses his temper, swears, makes a lot of comments that sound like a Slashdotter moaning about having to buy music (except about groceries not music), upends a small rack of merchandise near the door, and leaves the store.

Store owner is pissed, but sees no need to call 999. This guy isn't a real threat to anyone. The damage is slight. The situation may resolve itself once the would-be customer sobers up anyway.

Of course, follow this line of reasoning and Brown isn't a thug (I keep emphasizing that word, you know why...) but someone with temporarily poor judgement who was, by default, in a more mellow frame of mind despite appearances at the store.

Which, while I wasn't there, is certainly consistent not with Brown somehow being threatening to the officer that killed him, but initially (while there was no threat) likely to mouth of, and then when the situation turned threatening, more than a little paranoid and likely compliant with the (justifiably, as it turned out) scary cop: that is to say, I think despite the Ferguson police trying to smear Brown as a doped up thug, everything is consistent with the eyewitness accounts that say otherwise.

A few days before going to college Brown, apparently, smoked dope, leading to a series of events where a cop thought he could get away with executing him. Even replacing the more mellow attitude of British police with their authoritarian and mildly corrupt American counterparts, I don't think my white fellow shopper 20 years ago would ever have been shot if caught jaywalking afterwards. Given not merely the attempt to smear Brown, but the type of smear used, which seems to be used all too often, I think he was shot because certain elements in the US, and apparently many are in law enforcement, believe blacks belong to a less human class than the rest of us.

First Person Shooters (Games)

Journal: Videogames and sexism 2

Journal by squiggleslash

Read this: Guardian: From Lara Croft to Bayonetta: what is a 'strong female character'?

I'm kinda baffled by it to be honest. Leaving aside it deals with three female characters, the character it lauds is a poor example of anything, and the character it kinda sweeps under the rug has hidden virtues the author is too shortsighted to notice.

Lara Croft (original)

Lara Croft is perhaps the most famous woman in gaming. Since the original Tomb Raider arrived in 1996, the character has attracted criticism for her physical appearance â" so when the most recent release in the series gave her a realistically proportioned body, the new Lara was praised as a more relatable hero. Removing the over-sized breasts and teeny, tiny waist is apparently all that was needed for the character to evolve from sex object to admirable âoesurvivorâ.

I played a few original TR games, and quite honestly, "physical appearance" is the only aspect of Croft that's dubious. The character is independent, physically strong, smart, quick, and so on. It could be argued that she has "princess" style origins, being born into wealth/power, but she's not a princess in any other sense. She uses the resource at her disposal to her advantage, but she's working hard to get something better. If stereotypical teenage males are drawn into the games by seeing a hottie with large whatevers, said male then experiences a character who makes for quite a good role model. He won't be left with a "Women are toys to be objectified" view.

The counter to that, I guess, is that appearances might put off gamers not attracted to HwLWs, which is a perfectly reasonable complaint, but peripheral to the story the writer writes. The writer is trying to find examples of "strong women" in video games, and pretty much ignores this example, because she's top heavy.

Lara Croft (rebooted)

While Bayonetta fully embraces her sexuality, in the Tomb Raider reboot, Lara fades into her grueling, grey surroundings (...) Lara Croft has had to change to fit into the âoestrong female characterâ role, whereas Bayonetta whips it into submission and makes no apology for her love of lipstick, high heels or, indeed, herself.(...) For all the praise of Laraâ(TM)s growth throughout Tomb Raider, that maturation process is arguably nothing more than a jarring graduation from doubting, guilt-ridden girlhood into lean, mean, psychopathy. Her first kill is supposed to devastate us as it apparently devastates Lara but, almost immediately, weâ(TM)re thrust back into a game which rewards us for killing. Lara is a character who is even uncomfortable in her own story. (...) But within games and wider media, the âoesurvivorâ is a tired trope, women are survivors where men are heroes; they overcome rather than succeed.

I can kind of agree with all of this, survivor is a tired trope and one I've parodied in the past multiple times between pretty much every TV show since the original TV version of Nikita has insisted on portraying heroines-who-sometimes-have-to-use-violence in that way. I'm not sure whether the worst was the 2000s version of Bionic Woman, where the heroine felt obliged to be upset and complain constantly about the fact she'd been the successful recipient of experimental life-saving completely-positive-in-every-way prosthetics, or T:SCC which is just went on for ages with "Miserable Sarah".

But at the same time, what does that have to do with anything? If a male were in the same boat (figuratively), would they act significantly differently? We get miserable if we manage to claw ourselves out of a disaster but are still in danger too, I suspect at any rate.

Bayonetta

Despite appearances, Bayonetta rarely panders to the imagined male audience. Yes, sheâ(TM)s ridiculously proportioned and scantily clad for most of the game, but far from being an object, she is portrayed as having complete autonomy and control over her body and femininity. (...) Bayonetta (...) makes no apology for her love of lipstick, high heels or, indeed, herself. Everything about Bayonetta is determined by her womanhood and femininity, yet she remains dominant throughout: during the course of the game she spanks angels, submits them to humiliating torture attacks and transforms into a panther, clad with painted red claws and gold jewellery. Bayonetta is a powerful woman, she is not powerful in spite of being a woman (...) a truly empowering woman whoâ(TM)s unapologetically feminine, sexual and confident. Dismissed by many as an objectified fantasy, she is a woman without compromise who refuses to be ashamed of her body, who in one sequence giggles seductively as she grasps the pulsating heart of a heaven-sent deity and asks: âoeDo you want to touch me?â

I'm a little puzzled as to how this character is in any way a positive example of a "strong woman" archetype if, as the author breathlessly appears to claim, her greatest strengths are largely limited to some kind of violent version of being flirty and manipulative.

Moreover, if her powers revolve around her sexual effects on the compatible gender, does this not presume that that compatible gender is, in fact, the common controller of power and her oppressor? And does it suggest that the right approach to becoming strong is regularly flashing your boobs to distract someone who isn't doing what you want them to do?

I'm struggling with this one to be honest. If this view of the world is right, then prostitution is a liberating profession, and having skills suited to leadership roles the world needs are nothing compared to the ability to have a boss who's easily caught off guard because he's physically attracted to you.

Unmentioned

Despite the title, the article mentions three characters, quickly dispatches with the only one of any worth, and then avoids bringing up any more. The thesis seems to be survivor bad (well, OK, I guess), looks are important, and strong women are best when they're distracting men by being all sexy and stuff.

I think that's an awful, awful, idea. I don't think my daughter is going to become President, the first person on Mars, or the leader of the largest gang in South Florida controlling 74% of the American cocaine trade, with that attitude.

User Journal

Journal: New Business Venture

Journal by RailGunner
I'm going to open up a small restaurant that specializes in finger foods -- ham and cheese crackers, small BLTs, etc. with an extensive wine and liquor list.

I'm going to call it the Allahu Snack Bar.
User Journal

Journal: And now for something completely different 3

Journal by Marxist Hacker 42

The Catholic Church considers the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics to fit with our theology. But it also occurs to me that it fits with the problems I've run into converting analog to digital measurement. And THAT points to the theological idea that many people worship not the Creator of the Universe, but an image of God that is a model of the actual God.

User Journal

Journal: Fun with SQL Server 2012 11

Journal by Marxist Hacker 42

I have a Table Valued Function that returns a simple parameterized view. I want to turn that view into a string.

Can anybody tell me why the first query works and the second one doesn't?

DECLARE @JobID INT
DECLARE @strOut VARCHAR(MAX)

SET @JobID=2861

SELECT @strOut =Coalesce(@strOut +',','')+ ISNULL('[' +
MP.ModelPointName + '] int', 'ErrorInFactoryModel int')
FROM (SELECT TOP 800 ModelPointName, Sequence
      FROM dbo.GetReferencedModelPointsByJobID(@JobID)
      ORDER BY Sequence) MP
WHERE NOT (MP.ModelPointName LIKE '%Ship%'
        OR MP.ModelPointName LIKE '%Scrap%')

PRINT @strOut

SET @strOut=NULL

SELECT @strOut =Coalesce(@strOut +',','')+ ISNULL('[' +
MP.ModelPointName + '] int', 'ErrorInFactoryModel int')
FROM dbo.GetReferencedModelPointsByJobID(@JobID) MP
WHERE NOT (MP.ModelPointName LIKE '%Ship%'
        OR MP.ModelPointName LIKE '%Scrap%')
      ORDER BY Sequence

PRINT @strOut

The 2nd one returns a single field name, the first, returns all the field names.

User Journal

Journal: Trying to remember a conspiracy theory 7

Journal by Marxist Hacker 42

Back in the early 1990s, when CD Roms were first invented, on major use of them was for the conspiracy dial up bulletin board system. With a CD Rom online on your bulletin board, you could "host" a CD full of downloadable text files on everything from government cover-ups to UFOs.

I was into such things at the time, and read many of these files.

Fast forward to today- and Pope Francis gives us a conspiracy theory: that rich first world nations are promoting war in the third world as a prop to economics. All over the first world Catholic blogosphere, there is outrage- how dare the Pope tell us capitalism is supported by warfare?

Of course, Dwight Eisenhower, upon leaving the U.S. Presidency said the same thing,- warned us about the military industrial complex.

But I seem to remember a "secret" document passed around those old BBSs from the Vietnam Era that basically said the same thing, only actually recommending it as a policy. Does anybody else remember this document? Can you remember something I can google on? I'm coming up empty.

User Journal

Journal: Once again - I was right. 19

Journal by RailGunner
Barack Obama is a fascist who is authorizing the use of the US Military against US Citizens ON US SOIL.

Link this story with the militarization of Federal Agencies (such as the Post Office, the DHS Hollowpoint ammo buy, and others, and you can see HOW he's doing this.

If you aren't concerned about this... you aren't paying attention. And if you're not paying attention, when the shit hits the fan, you'll deserve what you get.
User Journal

Journal: Axl Rose listed as best rock vocalist? 4

Journal by RailGunner
Link

Congrats to Axl Rose.

Apparently Michael Sweet, Bruce Dickinson, Rob Halford, Tarja Turunen, Geoff Tate, Rey Parra, James LaBrie, Ronnie Dio, Dave Mustaine, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, James Hetfield, Trevor McNevan, Jon Sumrall, Mark Slaughter, Jani Lane, Joe Elliott, Brendan Small, Bon Scott, Steven Tyler, Jeff Scott Soto, Eric Bloom, Robert Plant, David Lee Roth, Sammy Hagar, Brad Delp, Robin Zander, Tom Keifer, Jack Blades, Tommy Shaw, Dennis DeYoung, Paul Stanley, Daniel McMaster, Jason McMaster, Ian Gillian, Ryan Clark, Amy Lee, Chris Jericho, Andi Deris, James Paul Luna, Jesse James, Jimi Hendrix, Steve Perry, Steve Augheri, Joan Jett, Lenny Kravitz, Lita Ford, Cristina Scabbia, Kevin Dubrow, Klaus Meine, Vince Neil, David Coverdale, Phil Anselmo, Ralf Scheepers, Bret Michaels, Freddy Mercury, Steven Pearcy, Rob Zombie, Tommy Christ, Sebastian Bach, Ted Nugent, Justin Hawkins, Ian Astbury, Jim Morrison, Roy Orbison, Maynard Keenan, Rik Emmet, Dee Snider, Peter Steele, Weird Al Yankovic and George Fischer were all unavailable for the "contest".
User Journal

Journal: Which is more dangerous, theology or ideology? 15

Journal by Marxist Hacker 42

This article insists that for human beings, belief is not optional. There are two basic types of beliefs- religious theology and political ideology- but all human beings, even atheists, have some form of belief.
 
  A study of war would seem to indicate that the 20th century clearly showed that ideology is more dangerous than theology, but since fighting for religion has never really gone out of fashion, what do you think?

It is impossible to travel faster than light, and certainly not desirable, as one's hat keeps blowing off. -- Woody Allen

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