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Journal: We've gone past "good enough" computing ...

Journal by BarbaraHudson

Time was when most of us were complaining about needing more ram, more cpu, more storage. Today? Computers are cheap, fast, multi-core, more energy-efficient than ever, with more storage than many of us will ever use ... and by the time we fill up those huge hard disks, we'll just buy a newer, faster computer with several times the storage and even more ram for less.

And if that's not enough, there's online storage. It's not just Linus Torvalds who can say "Only wimps use tape backup: real men just upload their important stuff on ftp, and let the rest of the world mirror it." Everyone does it - even when they really shouldn't.

"Fast, good, cheap - pick two?" Not any more. For most users and use cases, we really can have it all, literally right in the palm of our hand if that's what we want. Sure, a lot of the old skills that were needed when hardware sucked are now obsolete, but I for one don't miss those days. Not when I can concentrate on doing what I want instead.

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Journal: I'm dismayed at how many of the old gang are gone ... 5

Journal by BarbaraHudson

I took another poster's advice and went through my two dormant accounts and friended a bunch of my old friends. But looking at the date many of them made their last post or last journal entry, it looks like many of them are gone, probably for good.

On another note, I simply don't have time to read, never mind respond to, AC posts any more. I know how disappointed that will make a certain individual (and everyone else will be going YAY!!!! FINALLY!!!! :-)

So what's next? All I can say is that I guarantee it will probably be more interesting than anything I've journaled about so far. I just haven't quite decided where to start, because it's a bit more complicated than anything else I've written about to date.

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Journal: Victims of technological change - why haters gotta hate. 48

Journal by BarbaraHudson

Curiosity works for a lot of us. We're willing to turn aside from the tools that work for us for a bit, even build up some technical debt in our area of expertise, to explore some new technology that might in the long run prove beneficial, or at least interesting (and if you're a curious person, poking around stuff that's interesting is FUN).

And yet, we probably all have areas where we're a bit of an iconoclast. And technology is littered with people who just refused to accept change, and became irrelevant. We don't code everything in assembler, or c, or c++. Even I use java (gasp) on occasion. But what happens when the computing environment becomes so user-centric (a GOOD THING) that people are free to choose what works for them without having to seek the advice of self-anointed gurus whose advice is no longer relevant?

We should ask ourselves why "haters gotta hate"

Sometimes those "gurus" fail to move on, becoming more shrill with every passing year. It's a personal thing for them - they cling to what used to work because that's all they have. They become trollish, haters, because if they're forced to realize that their life's work is now worthless, what will they have left? What WILL they do? They know in the back of their mind that they're too far behind to catch up, so this fear drives them to become even more rigid in their views.

Which brings us to Alexander P Kowolski, the HOSTS file troll.

Here's a guy who posts up to 100 anonymous responses a day, going through my posting history to crap-flood every discussion. I think this response sums up the problem pretty well, at least from my perspective:

Well, since you FINALLY asked how you are absurd:

1st definition of absurd from google: Ab-surd: (of a person or a person's behavior or actions) foolish; unreasonable.

Going through every post I make in every thread, posting multiple responses (up to 100 posts a day) attacking me based on my gender (including in a thread about sexual harassment) - I think that most people would qualify your behaviour as both foolish and unreasonable.

Getting all bent out of shape when someone exposes your bullying tactics and then tells other people how to do the same to you - both your original bullying and your response when you get it thrown right back at you are foolish, unreasonable, and just plain childish.

Saying I'm stalking you when it's obvious you're the one doing the stalking - foolish, unreasonable, and more than a bit delusional. Oh, and your paranoia is showing.

Thinking that attacking me because I'm transsexual is going to get you anywhere on a tech site, when tech attracts a higher-than-average number of people in the LGBT community, as well as sympathizers, is foolish. Continuing it day after day when it doesn't work is not just unreasonable, it's stupid and/or insane.

Clinging to arguments for your HOSTS file that are completely orthogonal to today's reality, and that obviously the vast majority don't care about and don't need because they have found better ways to solve their own problems, is foolish on it's face and unreasonable to those looking on, who use their computers just fine without your "solution."

Going on about how "taking estrogen is rotting your brain", that "you're crazy to have cut your balls off" (btw - I'm not a surgeon, and I don't pretend to be one on the innnertubes), when I'm following expert medical advice that has a proven track record of success, well, that's both foolish and ridiculous.

The problem isn't your hosts file - it's your behaviour, which certainly is absurd, and probably disturbed as well.

That leads to another question - why? What is it about me in particular that sets you off worse than anyone else? Is it me, or do you have a problem with women in general (I seem to recall some attacks you made on other women who have challenged you that would indicate that this may be the case)? Do you think that men are superior to women, and that anyone who willingly "trades in" to become a woman is stupid because you have a low opinion of women?

And that, of course, brings us back on-topic - the "science has a sexual assault problem". You don't seem to be capable of the introspection necessary to realize how absurd your behaviour is. How many other women have you felt it's your right to attack, and still continue years later, about their sex, gender, or sexual identity, just because you disagreed with their opinion on a technical issue of absolutely no import to anyone but you?

He has time and again failed to realize that people who use alternatives that work for them, such as adblock, don't give a damn about his stupid hosts file and the supposed benefits. It's THEIR computer, and they're free to use what works for them - and it's NOT going to be his HOSTS file. And crap-flooding discussions with challenges to enter some useless "pissing contest" of the benefits of one over the other is irrelevant to pretty much everyone except him. So why do it? Perhaps because he is so psychologically invested in his world view that any alternative is just too scary.

So why "feed the troll" by posting a journal entry about him?

That's a valid question, for sure. But if you see him as a victim of technological change instead of just a troll, it might help put some of the other "wars" on slashdot into perspective. We get comfortable with our niche, change happens, and we have to, once again, learn a whole new slew of technologies. The prospect can be daunting, sometimes it's just a feeling of "oh heck, here we go again, change for the sake of change yadda yadda yadda ...", and it's easier to say "I'm just going to stick with what works" ... until one day we wake up and realize we're in danger of becoming totally irrelevant.

It can happen to any of us. Did it happen to APK? Or was he always like this? I don't know, and I don't really care. Either way, the lessons to be learned are the same. Haters gotta hate, because if you take that away from them, they have nothing to fall back on. They are more to be pitied, same as many of the opponents of same-sex marriage, now that they can't bolster their own sense of self-worth by hating gays and lesbians, are feeling a bit lost.

User Journal

Journal: I'm back. 35

Journal by BarbaraHudson

I can see well enough to use a computer again, which came as a welcome surprise. Huge thanks to the retinal surgeons who patched my left eye back into some semblance of working order, and to the work over the last several years by the team of ophthalmologists and tech assistants who helped preserve much of the sight in my right eye.

It's been an interesting experience so far, and one that I have learned a lot from. I've been told that the betting money would be on my retinas being relatively stable for the next two-three years, though the vitrectomy was such an insult to the lens that I can expect to need it to be replaced in the next year or so.

The more things change, the more they stay the same ... especially here on /., where APK wasted no time claiming that various anonymous posters were me. Comments like this one must be driving him even nuttier - will he be accusing that poster of being me?

Only on slashdot :-)

Unfortunately, I never expected to use a computer again, so I don't have the passwords to my old accounts (neither my original one, nor the one I created with a gender-appropriate nic after I was outed as a transsexual). I'm sorry for the inconvenience. Just like I'm sorry that I wasn't able to keep people up to date before falling off the face of the net.

There are still plenty of challenges ahead, both near-term and long-term. And plenty of unanswered questions that I will do my best to clear up. I was going to do it elsewhere and just post links, but really, this is home (despite the beta crap).

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Journal: 2+ port router+asterisk server? 14

Journal by drinkypoo

I need a new system on which to run asterisk, bonus points if I don't have to configure it from scratch. I'd like to spend less than $200 (ideally I'd pick up something used if necessary for $100) but I have storage devices available, whether CF, SD, USB, or what have you. It can have wireless, but it doesn't have to because I have a routerboard for that. I have found my pogoplugs to be unreliable at best.

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Journal: nosupportlinuxhosting fail

Journal by drinkypoo

I decided to try out nosupportlinuxhosting but they appear to have suspended without notice or explanation. I sure hope I don't have to issue a chargeback, that would be stupid. I'm already waiting for Amazon to process two returns that have been sitting around at their facilities for weeks.

User Journal

Journal: This website has gone to shit 1

Journal by drinkypoo

I'm not talking about the content, that has always been shit
I'm talking about what happens when I try to modify my relationships.


The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.

Please contact the server administrator, and inform them of the time the error occurred, and anything you might have done that may have caused the error.

More information about this error may be available in the server error log.
Apache/2.2.3 (CentOS) Server at Port 80

Of course I reported the error. Of course I never heard back. Now I'm seeing it again.
Slashdot is basically unusable without friends/foes lists.

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Journal: Users opt in, but they don't opt out

Journal by drinkypoo

Google will tell you that their collection of "anonymous" location statistics is opt-in. That is, technically, true. However, on Gingerbread it is not opt-out. Once turned on, there is no option to disable it, that was added later. That, or I have forgotten all I once knew about google-fu. I can find how to change your mind about this on ICS, but not on GB.

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Journal: Keep it coming, mod trolls 4

Journal by drinkypoo

I can afford it.

User Journal

Journal: I'm sorry, did I break your concentration? 2

Journal by drinkypoo

Modtrolls troll mod. Film at eleven.

Pretty sure this time I offended an iFanboi.

Too bad you can't tag things "slashdot"

Lisp Users: Due to the holiday next Monday, there will be no garbage collection.