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User Journal

Journal Journal: Goatse as my 'homepage' 5

I'm just writing this to explain why I have the goatse site currently listed as my homepage.

It's because I've been reading slashdot for a good number of years now. I'm approaching 3000 posts. And I find a lot of fun and humour in the community and seeing people react when presented with illogical, untrue or just plain whacky information. Perhaps I'm just becoming jaded.

So I added goatse as my homepage in order to see how people will react. It's funny when people think that this is a troll account because of it. But rest assured that I am not actually the goatse guy.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Wardriving! 5

I just went wardriving for the first time today. A Camry plus an iBook plus an Airport card plus iStumbler add up to one great little adventure!

This took place in the residential areas surrounding downtown Toronto Canada, and in the nearby city of Mississauga and I was finding hotspots at a rate of about 5 per minute.

Unsurprising Findings:
About 80% of APs were not encrypted.
About 70% of APs had default ssid settings, typically "Wireless" or "Linksys."
The AP at my own place did not show up since I have the ssid broadcast turned off.
Warchalking is a lost cause when it's raining.
Don't eat and wardrive. Your notebook gets all dirty.

Surprising Findings:

1. People who change the ssid use silly names. For example, "Dr. (name)'s Office" or "110WillowStreet." Yes, I actually saw an address somewhere in Mississauga, near Hurontario and Dundas I believe.

2. It's possible that the Toronto Stock Exchange has a hotspot running. I saw something called "TSENET" when driving near to the TSE. Who knows, it could have been anything.

3. Wardriving is a helluva good time!

User Journal

Journal Journal: w00t! Got A Job! 4

I just got the call this afternoon.

After about 2 weeks of unemployment (which I am sure is very small compared to what many other slashdotters are experiencing) I will be starting work on monday for a IT tech / sysadmin type job. This should tide me over until I go back to class in Spetember. (I am a university student.)

[Btw, does anyone reading this know of any place where I could rent in the downtown Toronto area for not that much money? (I'm looking in the ~$450-500 range. I guess it doesn't hurt to ask ;-) ]

Anyway, the pay at this job is pretty low but I'm not complaining. The work seems quite interesting and, with hindsight, I performed pretty badly at some other interviews for high-paying jobs with great technology companies when I originally thought I had performed quite well. I guess I deserved it. Oh well, I am still learning.

User Journal

Journal Journal: One Metamoderation? 7

Has anyone else had a situation where they got some other number of moderations to metamoderate than 10? Just today, it gave me exactly one! I took a screenshot too if you're interested, although this would technically be very easy to fake.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Happy 2000th Post. 8

It's proven. I'm a slashdot addict and I have now racked up 2000 posts. Wow, and I've only been a member for about 28 months, if my count is right.

Basically, I'm writing this journal entry so that the post can be housed without polluting an article and so I can always find it. Sentimental value, I guess. Feel free to ignore it.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Slashdot Damages My Productivity 20

The observations here apply to me, not you. I'm not saying that slashdot damages everyone's productivity. But it damages mine.

Basically over the past year I have noticed that I grades are dropping and I spend tons of time on slashdot reading/posting/etc and having a damn good time. Just look at my number of posts. But dropping grades are bad.

Last summer when I was doing development work for a company, I blocked slashdot on my machine via hosts file and my productivity jumped. Just the inconvenience of having to remove it kept me paying attention to my job.

And look at me now. I have a major paper due tomorrow and I'm writing in my slashdot journal. Damnit, I have to keep myself away from this place!

User Journal

Journal Journal: The Office Part II 1

This could be considered a 'reflection' or a 'follow-up' to my 'The Office' journal entry June. (If you haven't read that one, this journal will be confusing to you. Go read it. It's short ;-)

Today, less that 1 week remains until the end of my work term. The software I developed has gotten some very enthusiastic and positive reasponse from Engineers and managers alike - I did a presentation to the Department Head late last week and it went quite well.

Now, to readers who have been made cynical by long experience with the world of work and programming in particular, please tell me if I learned the right things (as listed below) because, frankly, I'm too young to know.

- Pretty pictures are important. When demonstrating software, having 5% of the GUI done is more meaningful to the manager/non-programmer audience than having 50% of the coding done properly.

- Upper management is uninformed when it comes to computers. They don't know how to recognise policies that cut back on productivity with little or no tangible gain, and frankly they don't want advice or pointers from the people who do know.

- Watch the managers. Managers are managers for a reason. If you are in the lower ranks, you can learn a thing or two from watching how they handle questions in meetings, present information, interact with other people, etc.

- It's better to be a nice person. You're going to have to interact with your co-workers to do your job. It's best to help them out if you know a fix for their problem and make some friends. Some of them know amazing things and are willing to show if you have some initiative. (I found some of the best Dim Sum in Toronto this way!) If the people around you don't like you, then your life will be miserable.

- Appearances matter. Don't go around the office muttering to yourself. Show some pride in your work. Feel free to laugh. Managers and others notice these things and make quiet mental notes about your character. And it's infectious too, and can lead to a better office environment overall.

- Watch your money. You never know when your close family member / friend will ask to temporarily borrow $1000. You know they're trustworthy and will pay you back and you can't easily say no. Don't buy something on impulse and only buy it if you have a good reason and you need that specific item, not the cheaper alternative.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Disappearing story? 2

At about 10:36 AM (GMT-5) today a story about a potential Sub-Notebook and Handheld killer (link: appeared on the front page for about 1 minute and then when I tried to "read more" all I got was "Nothing to see here. Move along." The story vanished.

I wish I had a screen shot.

Does this kind of thing happen often? Was the story pulled because it was fake or something?

I remember that the story said the device stored about 3 movies (no mention of size) or about 1000 mp3s. And it ran Windows XP. Am I hallucinating? I did see this story appear momentarily on the homepage.

Or is this a regular occurence that I have only just found out about?

User Journal

Journal Journal: America != United States of America 50

Some people keep responding to my sig with a certain dictionary quotation:

Main Entry: America
Pronunciation: &-'mer-&-k&
Usage: geographical name
1 either continent (N. America or S. America) of the western hemisphere
2 or the Americas /-k&z/ the lands of the western hemisphere including N., Central, & S. America & the W. Indies

I suspect they got this from an American dictionary.

Think about it...

This the same country that arbitrarily redefines words in 'easier to spell' variations such as aluminium/aluminum, aeroplane/airplane, colour/color, night/nite (OK 'nite' is not ubiquitous in the USA.)

This is from the same country where the RIAA can redefine the meaning of a word in the dictionary for its own purposes.

The New Lexicon Webster's Encyclopaedia Dictionary of the English Language (Canadian Edition of an American Dictionary):

America: the two continents North America and South America, extending from beyond the Arctic Circle to the subantarctic regions and joined by a central isthmus. North America is centred on longitude 100 deg W while South America lies further East centred on longitude 60 deg W. The name is from Americus Vespucius (Amerigo Vespucci). The total land area is over 16,000,000 sq. miles and the estimated total pop. 500,000,000 Linguistically and culturally the Americans are known as Anglo-America (the U.S.A. and Canada) and Latin America (Mexico, Central America, most of the West Indies, and South America)

So essentially, the American dictionary makers are saying that outside of the USA, America != United States of America.

User Journal

Journal Journal: The Office 6

Here I sit at the office in my first big-company office/tech job ever. I am developing software for internal corporate use.

A small message to those who read Dilbert but haven't had a big-company office job: Dogbert and Catbert are right. Cubicles. Office Politics. Real Work. Real Benefits. Real boring. Meetings. Managers. Deadlines. Departments. Yes, you never understand the true ironies shown in the Dilbert world until you live them.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Trends in Metamoderation? 6

Has anyone else noticed that the metamoderation page has recently started to serve messages that are obvious trolls/offtopic/crapflood and fewer items that are ontopic and provide new and interesting information? It wasn't always like this. Even three weeks ago there was nary a crapflood or "Malda is gay" post appearing there.

Is this some sort of deliberate experiment? Or is the troll population exploding? Or am I just seeing random conspiracies when none are present?

What's up with this? Am I the only one that is noticing this? And if you see it too, what do you think it means?

User Journal

Journal Journal: Why I Won't Subscribe to Slashdot 1

Here are some reasons why I won't subscribe to slashdot (yet):

- Poor Editorial Quality: They still post stories with spelling / grammar errors.
- Poor Editorial Quality: They say that software is released when it has not reached the mirrors or been officially announced yet, thus slashdotting everything and preventing anyone from getting the software.
- Poor Editorial Quality: They went and posted blatant spoilers to the X-Files plot on the front page without warnings. And when they realised what they had done, the spoiler was not removed.
- Inexplicable Editorial Behaviour: They reject perfectly good stories again and again and then end up posting them weeks later. Mozilla 1.0RC1 has been out for a week and the editors have not posted it even though I submitted it.
- Arrogant Editors: They try to silence people who think differently. Did you ever read the first troll post investigation? The editors eliminated moderator privileges from everyone who modded that post up and kept knocking it down themselves.

This is why I will not give these people my money.

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