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Journal Journal: Cyclops upgrade to 10.6

Fedex showed up with Snow Leopard about 45 minutes ago. Upgrade went without a hitch. Everything seems pretty normal and the same so far, except my screen saver(s) dont work anymore.


Journal Journal: Why yes, I am the opposite of dead, thanks for asking! 1

Lurking but still alive.

It has been a long time since I posted on here. Much has happened. Went back to Japan, this time around I spent about a month backpacking and seeing a bunch of places outside of Tokyo. I did another backpacking trip to Europe and spent a couple weeks and managed to see 5 countries. I've been at a new job for about two years now. Pace is much more sane... really great team.. commute still sucks though.


Journal Journal: Cyclops gets upgraded to 10.5

Not wanting to be one of those "crazy" Apple fanboys who runs out and buys the latest MacOSX release the day it comes out, I waited until the NEXT day. So here I am, a few hours after installing and playing around with Leopard on my 24inch iMac "cyclops", and being quite impressed until I tried to run Time Machine. Time Machine was one of the features that I really wanted to have and was looking forward to. One thing that Apple fails to disclose up front is that Time Machine can only back up to another 10.5 machine, direct attached disk, or an Xsan array.

I on the otherhand, cling to my multi-platform home computing environment and use a centralized NAS appliance. This allows all of my systems to share a common disk over the network so I don't have to worry about clutter on my desk or moving around a USB/FireWire drive from computer to computer. Apple will have none of that nonsense though! Oh no! The only way to back up my iMac over the network using Time Machine is to another 10.5 machine. I suppose I could install Leopard on my dual G4 "mirror" and use that as a server but I was hoping to sell that machine to help recoup costs since I will be making another trip to Japan next spring and need every penny I can save.

At any rate, I'm pretty happy with Leopard so far. There really is no compelling reason for most people to upgrade right now as far as I can tell but the features are nice, the interface improved even more, and of course, Boot Camp is now officially supported so its not a complete wash.

Hardware Hacking

Journal Journal: Power outlets and switches: What's modern and nifty?

My kitchen improvement has commenced and I'd like to update the outlets and/or wall switches. I know I need to replace one of the outlets in the kitchen to GFCI so I figured I'd replace them all with something modern.

But which models? Where to buy from? Google search isn't narrowing down what I'm looking for enough to make sense of everything. I've looked at the Insteon and X10 and think those might be overkill for both budget and what I had in mind. What'd be cool is some sleek rocker style switches or a couple motion activated ones for the lights.

At any rate, I decided to paint the kitchen red. Actually, I thought about painting and my neighbor went ahead and did it. LOL. She was bored so she cleaned and painted my kitchen today. I wish I had more neighbors like her. Once the painting is done and finances are back in order, I'm going to tile the floor. I'll probably go ceramic for the kitchen floor but I'm also eyeing granite tile for the bathroom where its more economical since its a tiny bathroom.

Linux Business

Journal Journal: We're hiring! Boston metro area

For those of you in the Boston metro area or wouldn't mind working in said area, my employer is looking to hire a manager on a contract basis to interface with a very difficult customer. This may not be a long term position depending on how things go, nor would you really want to stay here long term anyway to be honest.

This position requires understanding of Storage Management (Netbackup familiarity a huge plus). The job is managing a small team (myself - the technical team lead / consultant, a mid level support engineer, and a junior support engineer/tape operator.) on customer premise. We are a "managed service" company who's acting as a subcontractor in an outsourced IT environment.

To put it bluntly, we need someone who has balls but is tactful. You'll be expected to interface with the primary outsourcer as well as the client, both of whom expect and demand something for nothing. You'll also be expected to fight for our cause and work with other groups in our company who'm need more than gentle prodding to make significant required changes to improve service delivery. Last but not least, you'll need to fit in with our tight knit team already in place. We need leadership, not wholesale changes and won't put up with another cowboy.

This is without a doubt a very challenging client and situation, but I think its a good job for someone with the right mindset and ambition.

If interested, please shoot me an email with some info and your resume and I'll forward you on to the Director if you pass our turing test.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Help oppose HR 297

Congressional Leaders Moving To Pass Gun Control Without A Vote!
-- McCarthy bill would treat gun owners even worse than terrorists

Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Place Suite 102
Springfield VA 22151
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408

"Another gun rights group, the Gun Owners of America, is adamantly opposed to the [McCarthy-Dingell] legislation. It said the measure would allow the government to trample privacy rights by compiling reams of personal information and potentially bar mentally stable people from buying guns." -- Associated Press, April 24, 2007

Thursday, April 26, 2007

This is going to be a knock-down, drag-out fight. GOA continues to stand alone in the trenches, defending the rights of gun owners around the country. It's not going to be easy.

Gun control supporters want to pass gun control within the next couple of weeks. And that's why, even if you took action earlier this week, you need to do so once again.

All the gun haters (who have been keeping silent for a while) are now coming out of the closet and into the open. Take the notoriously anti-gun senator from New York -- Chuck Schumer. He has been very, very excited this week. Recent events have given him a platform, and the excuse, to push legislation that he had sponsored years ago -- legislation that never got through Congress.

You see, Senator Chuck Schumer has been, in past years, the Senate sponsor of the McCarthy bill (HR 297). And the recent murders at Virginia Tech have given Senator Schumer the pretext he has been looking for. Appearing on the Bill O'Reilly show earlier this week, Schumer did his best to make a reasonable-sounding pitch for more gun control.

He told O'Reilly on Monday that while he and Rep. McCarthy had previously worked together on this legislation, he now wants Congress to take up HR 297 quickly. "The Brady Law is a reasonable limitation," Schumer said. "Some might disagree with me, but I think certain kinds of licensing and registration is a reasonable limitation. We do it for cars."

Get the picture? First, he wants the Brady Law strengthened with the McCarthy-Dingell-Schumer legislation. Then it's off to pass more gun control -- treating guns like cars, where all gun owners are licensed and where bureaucrats will have a wonderful confiscation list.

In the O'Reilly interview, Schumer showed his hand when he revealed the strategy for this bill. Because it could become such a hot potato -- thanks to your efforts -- Senator Schumer is pushing to get this bill passed by Unanimous Consent in the Senate, which basically means that the bill would get passed WITHOUT A VOTE.

This is a perfect way to pass gun control without anyone getting blamed... or so they think. We need to tell every Senator that if this bill passes without a vote, then we hold ALL OF THEM responsible. (Be looking for a future GOA alert aimed at your Senators.)

On the House side, the Associated Press reported this past Monday that "House Democratic leaders are working with the National Rifle Association to bolster existing laws blocking" certain prohibited persons from buying guns. Of course, there are at least three problems with this approach:

1. It's morally and constitutionally wrong to require law-abiding citizens to first prove their innocence to the government before they can exercise their rights -- whether it's Second Amendment rights, First Amendment rights, or any other right. Doing that gives bureaucrats the opportunity to abuse their power and illegitimately prevent honest gun owners from buying guns.

2. Bureaucrats have already used the Brady Law to illegitimately deny the Second Amendment rights of innocent Americans. Americans have been prevented from buying guns because of outstanding traffic tickets, because of errors, because the NICS computer system has crashed -- and don't forget returning veterans because of combat-related stress. You give an anti-gun bureaucrat an inch, he'll take a mile -- which we have already seen as GOA has documented numerous instances of the abuses mentioned above.

3. Finally, all the background checks in the world will NOT stop bad guys from getting firearms. As we mentioned in the previous alert, severe restrictions in Washington, DC, England, Canada, Germany and other places have not stopped evil people from using guns to commit murder. (Correction: In our previous alert, we incorrectly identified Ireland as the location of the infamous schoolyard massacre. In fact, it took place in Dunblane, Scotland in 1996 -- a country which at the time had even more stringent laws than we have here.)


HR 297 would require the states to turn over mountains of personal data (on people like you) to the FBI -- any information which according to the Attorney General, in his or her unilateral discretion, would be useful in ascertaining who is or is not a "prohibited person."

Liberal support for this bill points out an interesting hypocrisy in their loyalties: For six years, congressional Democrats have complained about the Bush administration's efforts to obtain personal information on suspected terrorists WITHOUT A COURT ORDER.

And yet, this bill would allow the FBI to obtain massive amounts of information -- information which dwarfs any records obtained from warrantless searches (or wiretaps) that have been conducted by the Bush Administration on known or suspected terrorists operating in the country.

In fact, HR 297 would allow the FBI to get this information on honest Americans (like you) even though the required data is much more private and personal than any information obtained thus far by the Bush administration on terrorists.

And all of these personal records would be obtained by the FBI with no warrant or judicial or Congressional oversight whatsoever!!!

Get the picture? Spying on terrorists is bad... but spying on honest gun owners is good. After all, this horrific intrusion on the private lives of all Americans is presumed to be "okay" because it's only being used to bash guns, not to go after terrorists and criminals who are trying to kill us.

As indicated in earlier alerts, this information could include your medical, psychological, financial, education, employment, traffic, state tax records and more. We don't even know the full extent of what could be included because HR 297 -- which can be viewed at by typing in the bill number -- is so open-ended. It requires states to provide the NICS system with ALL RECORDS that the Attorney General believes will help the FBI determine who is and who is not a prohibited person. Certainly, an anti-gun AG like Janet Reno would want as many types of records in the system as possible.

The provision that would probably lead to the greatest number of 'fishing expeditions' is that related to illegal aliens. Federal law prohibits illegal aliens from owning guns. The bill requires all "relevant" data related to who is in this country illegally. But what records pertaining to illegal aliens from the states would be relevant? Perhaps a better question would be, what records are not relevant?


Please take a moment to communicate your opposition to HR 297 -- even if you already sent your Representative a note earlier this week. We have provided a new letter (Use the Take Action feature below) which provides updated information relating to the battle we are fighting.

House leaders are talking about bringing up this bill soon. And Sen. Schumer (in his interview with O'Reilly) even hinted at the fact that the bill could come up WITHOUT the ability to offer pro-gun amendments -- such as a repeal of the DC gun ban or reciprocity for concealed carry holders -- provisions that could potentially serve as killer amendments.

Also -- oh yeah, this is going to upset you -- Senator Schumer told O'Reilly, "I got to tell you, a lot of NRA people, they support this." Can you believe that? Senator Schumer is claiming to speak for you! That's why it's so important that you once again tell your congressman that Schumer is wrong... that you're a supporter of gun rights who OPPOSES the anti-gun McCarthy-Dingell bill.

Sun Microsystems

Journal Journal: Sun employees aren't allowed to use Visio 5

Given my line of work, I've made friends with a lot of Sun and (formerly separate) StorageTek employees over the years. A buddy who works in pre-sales on the STK side of the house told me that his Sun counterparts were blown away by his engineering diagrams in Visio, because they've been forbidden to use it and instead only have access to OpenOffice Draw.

I'm all for shaking my fist at the Evil Empire from Redmond, but how such a large computer organization gets away without using Visio for their pre-sales and consulting arms is beyond me. Draw just doesn't cut it when you have to diagram power, racks, servers, etc, in a modern datacenter.

It's funny.  Laugh.

Journal Journal: Stolen joke from a mostly liberal mailing list

One day a florist goes to a barber for a haircut. After the cut he asked about his bill and the barber replies: "I'm sorry, I cannot accept money from you; I'm doing community service this week." The florist is pleased and leaves the shop.

Next morning when the barber goes to open his shop, there is a thank you card and a dozen roses waiting for him at his door.

Later, a cop comes in for a haircut, and when he goes to pay his bill the barber again replies: "I'm sorry, I cannot accept money from you; I'm doing community service this week." The cop is happy and leaves the shop.

Next morning when the barber goes to open up there is a thank you card and a dozen donuts waiting for him at his door.

Later a Republican comes in for a haircut, and when he goes to pay his bill the barber again replies: "I'm sorry, I cannot acept money from you; I'm doing community service this week." The Republican is very happy and leaves the shop.

Next morning when the barber goes to open, there is a thank you card and a dozen different books such as "How to Improve Your Business" and "Becoming More Successful."

Then a Democrat comes in for a haircut, and when he goes to pay his bill the barber again replies: "I'm sorry, I cannot accept money from you; I'm doing community service this week." The Democrat is very happy and leaves the shop.

The next morning when the barber goes to open up, there are a dozen Democrats lined up waiting for a free haircut.


Journal Journal: Fuck you SUV with the Bush/Cheney '04 sticker! 2

Driving to work yesterday (in my new Prius), and I get cut off by some sort of huge SUV with Bush/Cheney sticker on the back.

Hey driver of said vehicle... would you mind taking a long walk off a short pier? Just because I drive a hybrid car doesn't mean you get to be a prick. I bought the car because its 1) geeky from a technology standpoint and 2) gets better gas mileage for my 110 mile round trip everyday.

I don't deserve your wreckless driving just because you think I'm a liberal. I'm not a liberal, nor would I continue to drive a huge gas guzzling car just to prove I make more money than everybody else or that I'm a lock in step Republican.


United States

Journal Journal: Where do they hide the RFID thingy? 3

Passport finally showed up in the mail. I don't think it has the RFID chip in it. No mention of it anywhere on the paperwork that came back with it or any obvious places that bulge or won't bend.

Did they run out of the new RFID ones? There's no logo on mine, so I'm guessing they stopped putting them out or ran out. Either way, I'm glad to have a good ol' fashioned one.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Get your damn SUV off Mars

Apparently Mars is experiencing Global Warming too.

The Sun is to ultimately blame, but that doesn't stop the lefty crowd from blaming SUV's and claiming the Sun couldn't possibly be at fault for what's going on here on Earth. When opposed by scientific data, they just yell louder.

Don't get me wrong. I do believe all the industrialization, cars, etc, do have a negative impact. But we can't just stop everything and live in a hippy commune. And even if we did scrap all cars for hybrids, not ONE global warming doom sayer can substantiate any estimated improvement.

The Media

Journal Journal: In loving memory, my friend Arden Howard

Howard, Nancie Arden

HOWARD Nancie Arden Howard, age 52, passed away quietly February 21 after a brief illness. Arden was born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida. Arden was in the first graduating class of Edward H. White High School and went on to the San Francisco Art Institute where she nurtured her talents for the creative arts. Arden was a lover of life and a person who was willing to go that extra step to help anyone she felt might need it. Her artistic ability and her devotion to her many adoptive cats always brought a smile to her friends and family. Arden's quick wit and stubbornness in supporting what she believed in will be missed by all. With her passing, Arden leaves behind many fond memories of good times for all that knew her. Arden is predeceased by her sister Paige M. Simpson. Arden is survived by her beloved husband James D. Howard, mother, Nancie Williams, father, Fred Simpson, mother-in-law, Emmie Howard (Harry Rowe), father-in-law Jim Howard, sister, Blair Rapanick (Kenny), brother-in-law, David Johnson, adored nieces and nephews, Tyler Rapanick, Chase Johnson and David L. Johnson, aunt, Virginia Cobb, uncle, Allan Cobb and cousins, Jonathan Cobb (Doria), Leisa Norwood (Phil) and many other dear family and friends as Arden never met a stranger. A private memorial service will be held by the family. A celebration to honor Arden's life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Arden's name to the Mission House, 800 Shetter Ave., Jacksonville Beach, FL, 32250. 904-241-6767.


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