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User Journal

Journal Journal: !(AFK) 4

Hi everybody, I'm back. The wedding went well, I was snagged to run the sound equipment as well as making the slideshow. The better I did at one job, the more jobs they gave me!

My slideshow was a bonafide hit, as was my PowerBook. Just showing people the Magnification on the Dock was enough to get oohs and ahhs. I answered their questions as honestly as possible and let them make up their own minds. Five years ago, I would have been one of the crazed zealots who "embellish" the truth to make a sale, but I guess I'm too old for that now. Overall, people were interested, and a few are VERY interested (unfortunately the most interested was a nearly-homeless 20-something jazz musician who loved GarageBand), but most people still think WinTel is "good enough" and are thus not interested. Amazingly enough, a cousin of the Bride was a physicist (the only person in history that I've met who got the joke on my OpenBSD t-shirt) and he is running Slack on his home PC and Suse and RedHat at the University, and he was explaining the Gnu Project to a fellow geek, an environmentalist who works for the government, and that looked like a definite "switch". Gnu/Linux has an ethical/emotional/ideological pull to it that other systems don't have. Cool with me, I'm a bit biased towards the *nixes myself, having enjoyed the Windows BlueScreen for years.

I'm finding that it takes about 4 days to unwind from work, to the point where I feel relaxed and at ease. Taking just a Friday off doesn't really do me any good stress-wise.

A six hour drive gives you a lot of time to think -- especially when you've forgotten all your tapes and CDs at home and the radio keeps fuzzing out every 20 minutes. Like my friend Sam the Butcher, I am trying to get my life together -- it was never really "apart" in the first place, but it can definitely be better. Life is short. I only have one life--that I can prove, anyway. Anything more is icing on the cake, but I figure I'd better get to work in making this life the best it can be.

THIS POST'S IDEAL TOPIC ICON: BFG9000, Exhausted From Vacationing, Is Too Weak To Stop A Broke Jazz Guy From Running Off With His PowerBook

User Journal

Journal Journal: Serfdom. Brought to you by the word "Sad". 5

Watching some boring show last weekend, these two old codgers were talking about history and other "mostly boring" topics. The one thing that interested me was the statement that "in the Middle Ages, the peasant class, who were known as the serfs, worked for the King for the first four months of the year, and then for themselves the rest of the year."

Sad, considering that Tax Freedom Day for us Canadians is fast approaching 7 months of the year. It's slightly better in America, though if you added up the user fees in the States required to equal the amount of services you get in Canada you'd probably be getting close to the same sad level.

But what's even sadder is that I am even worse than that. I work 50 weeks of the year for my 2 weeks of freedom (vacation). I wear black every day to work, so much so that it's commonly accepted that I'm a goth (which I'm not), but on my vacation I wear khakis and a light blue buttondown shirt and never stop smiling at people around me and opening doors for ladies. It's an unconscious change I never thought of until now.

This reminds me of my friend's .sig on all of his emails, personal and corporate (he works at a bank): ...did I mention that I hate my job?

Hilarious if it probably weren't true. That makes it sad. I'm sad for the guy.

I lost weight on my last one week vacation (I went to Mexico) and my blood levels were better. I got a tan and didn't touch a computer. I didn't worry. I woke up in the morning and had a cervesa and looked out the window at the sun. Then I did fun things until I went to bed happy.

Serfdom. Think about it.

I won't be able to post for a few days, I'm going to a wedding where I'm running the slideshow (Turned out Mighty Fine(TM) if I do say so myself).


User Journal

Journal Journal: BANNED.

Sorry I haven't been posting much, I've been banned again for the last couple days. I was "unbanned" in total for couple hours a few days ago, until I posted this in my journal. Then I was banned again. And as before, I haven't posted anything banworthy, so I'll assume it's

A) that incriminating JE,
B) a personal vendetta on the part of an editor, or
C) a computer glitch.

Choose Three.

Slashdot is either screwed, they think I'm a terrorist, or they've banned all of Canada from posting. Bummer.

And of course, no responses to my five emails. They probably filter all emails with the words "Please Explain My Banning" or "Please Review My Posting History And Reply With Banning Reasons" as spam and send it to /dev/null (or the "Recycle Bin" or "Trash" in their case).

Which leads my friends back to the NSA conspiracy thing; perhaps there has been no response because "No further communication is permitted"... Yikes. I thought *I* was paranoid. I'm actually the sane one. I think the editors have just banned my ISP the way some people ban AOLers and I suffer because of AC trolls; my friends are pulling out previous case files of NSA involvement in private companies, prohibiting communication, monitoring forum posts, and barking orders at ISPs and stuff. Nice walk down Memory Lane, anyway.

Whatever. All I'm saying is that I can't really comment in anyone's journals or contribute to news discussions until the Grand High Dictators for Life actually read the emails I've sent them.

(Yes, I'm bitter. This is retarded. I can't post, but I can moderate and metamod? My karma is now Good, but if I could post, I'd be Excellent in a week? My history is better than most? Bahh! The editors are just jealous ;-) Of my spelling, anyway. )

EDIT: I just noticed my Karma'a at Excellent again, I'm guessing due to my friend mmm coffee, who is not only generous and wise, but has a nym which has kept me on the righteous path of caffeine addiction.

THIS POST'S IDEAL TOPIC ICON: Mother Theresa Excommunicated By The Pope, Who Then Goes On Vacation And Won't Give Her Reasons.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Strange Metamod Glitch 1

Today I metamoderated the same 10 posts I metamoderated yesterday. Actually only 9 were the same and the last one was different, but you get the drift. I am sure I hit submit yesterday, so it's not a mistake on my part.

Am I a human Bermuda Triangle? I wonder if strange things like this happen to anybody else.


Journal Journal: Potential Reason.

I sent my letter to not only moderation at, but pater at (Cowboy Neal, the Great Guru) and malda at (Taco). To get Taco's email, I went to his Journal.

Here's what I found.


Code Refreshes, I, Robot, MacHack/ADHOC
9:07 Wednesday 21 July 2004 [ Add Friend | #78007 ]
The code refresh went as well as could be expected... which is to say that there was some twists, turns, and a whole lotta bad aftermath, but that's par for the course. Under the hood things are all working properly. We had a couple of quick bugs that are now fixed. A few more minor bugs are waiting to be swatted.


I'm guessing my conspiracy theorist buddies and I went too far in the "Slashdot is evil" thing. Seems that the old law is true: never mistake for ill will those acts that can be blamed on incompetence. Oh well, I'm having more fun reading my friend's journals than trying to save the world of slashdot anyway.

My mom was right--I *AM* a minor bug waiting to be swatted.

THIS POST'S IDEAL TOPIC ICON: Mulder with a Dunce Cap On.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Letter Sent. Posted For Posterity (Without IPID, etc.)

Hi editors. How's it going?

I was banned last week for no apparent reason; I wrote to then to get an explanation and none was received. My ban was lifted last night and I posted normally. TODAY, I am banned again, despite no moderation of my post whatsoever. Please take a look at my case and respond with an explanation!

Stranger still, I received mod points *the same minute I was banned*. I think you have a corrupt database of some kind, but what do I know.

Here's the code.

Due to excessive bad posting from this IP or Subnet, comment posting has temporarily been disabled. If it's you, consider this a chance to sit in the timeout corner . If it's someone else, this is a chance to hunt them down. If you think this is unfair, please email with your MD5'd IPID and SubnetID, which are "" and "" and (optionally, but preferably) your IP number "" and your username "bfg9000".

Look me up, you'll see I'm banned and have mod points at the same time. And that I haven't posted anything banworthy.



THIS POST'S IDEAL TOPIC ICON: Whining Crying Baby With A Pen, Writing A Letter.

User Journal

Journal Journal: MMM COFFEE!! 2

Sorry, buddy, but I'm banned again. I wanted to respond to your Konqueror post, but I just got banned. AND I have 5 mod points.

You have moderator access and 5 points (expire on 2004-07-29). Welcome to those of you just joining: please read the moderator guidelines for instructions.
· You can't post & moderate the same discussion.
· Concentrate on promoting more than demoting.
· Browse at -1 to keep an eye out for abuses.
· Mail the admin URLs showing abuse (the cid link please!).

WTF??? Now I don't think it's me, this is TOO strange.

I'm writing yet ANOTHER email to I think Slashdot is broken. Some help figuring out what's going on from the Slashdot editors would be nice.

Due to excessive bad posting from this IP or Subnet, comment posting has temporarily been disabled. If it's you, consider this a chance to sit in the timeout corner . If it's someone else, this is a chance to hunt them down. If you think this is unfair, please email with your MD5'd IPID and SubnetID, which are "" and "" and (optionally, but preferably) your IP number "" and your username "bfg9000".

Still mentioning my username specifically. Weird. You guys have seen my posting history. WTF?

I didn't know you could get mod points with only good karma. BTW, anybody know a good post or poster for moderation?

THIS POST'S IDEAL TOPIC ICON: Booted From His Own Fan Club, Birds Flying Around His Head, Holding Mod Point Vouchers.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Posting Again. 3

I can post again, but now my karma's been kicked down to Good from Excellent, which is where it was last week. It'll take me 3 days to get back up to Excellent, I figure. Unless of course, someone with infinite mod points is gunning for me. That could make Slashdot much more interesting.

And still no response email to either of my TWO well-worded and intelligent requests.

I have no clue what happened, I showed my friends my posting history on the weekend, and they *ALL* thought it was my "an OS cannot be proven to be backdoor-free unless you can see 100% of the source code" comment. Every one of them (IT guys and coders all) thinks that Apple must either be a silent partner in VA Software, and is thus to be "protected and promoted from on high", or that it's just a pissed-off rogue editor who cares more for pushing OS X than for the truth (pudge probably, he was even mentioned by name by one older, more experienced acquaintance). Interesting how secrecy and seemingly-corrupt behaviour leads to immediate thoughts of conspiracy. It is, after all, the most direct route to an acceptable and logical conclusion.

Whatever. I'll never find out as long as moderation is anonymous and without real accountability, and people can be banned without explanation of any kind. In this way, Slashdot is as closed and secretive as Microsoft or the White House -- but far less important, far less accountable, and far less just.

In my humble embittered opinion.

THIS POST'S IDEAL TOPIC ICON: Mulder And Scully Saying "A-HA!", Smoking Man Sneaking Out The Back Door.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Sorry, AC, Can't Respond To Your Post.

I can't post, even in my own Journal! I can only post these main JE's until the ban ends... I have no clue about the subnet thing until someone from Slashdot actually responds to my emails (which is getting more unlikely -- they've probably outsourced their tech support to India). I tried to respond to you as an AC just to be polite and acknowledge your post (and say thanks for actually reading this), but I guess I can't post as AC either. PITA.

I'm just glad I'm not a subscriber, though if I was they'd probably respond to me. I think the chances of me ever supporting them have just faded away to nothing, though.

I don't know how Banning works, whether it's an instantaneous automated thing or editor preference, but if it's automated, I wasn't banned for my joke modded to zero, because it was posted before my comments about an open-sourced BIOS (and the need of systems to be completely open in order to prevent the possibility of backdoors in the closed portion). So either the editors do it manually, or it was my anti-proprietary software comment that got me banned. It wasn't like I got too many downmods and tripped a switch.

9:06 Thursday 22 July 2004 -- Anti-Closed Source Post (Reasonable, not zealous or improper in any way)

8:48 Thursday 22 July 2004 -- Not-so-funny joke about forking the Linux kernel because they aren't upping the Revision Numbers fast enough

Smells like anti-Anti-Closed Source censorship to me, but I'll wait for their response to know for sure -- and post it.

EDIT: Actually, I CAN say that it's not the subnet users -- the ban mentions me by name, and reads like this:
Due to excessive bad posting from this IP or Subnet, comment posting has temporarily been disabled. If it's you, consider this a chance to sit in the timeout corner . If it's someone else, this is a chance to hunt them down. If you think this is unfair, please email with your MD5'd IPID and SubnetID, which are "jumble of letters and numbers here" and "jumble of letters and numbers here" and (optionally, but preferably) your IP number "##.##.###.###" and your username "bfg9000".
If it wasn't ME they were pissed at, why would they mention my username? If it wasn't MY ACCOUNT they were banning, the addresses would have been sufficient.

Journal Journal: Day 2 of My Ban... 1

Still banned from posting -- because of one bad joke in a sea of Upmodded comments? Second email sent to, still no response.

But they're still bugging me to metamod every day, and my karma's never been better. Strange -- though I've never been banned before, so maybe this is normal procedure.

Looking at my history, I would like to assume it's the modded down joke for which I'm being "punished". The only things I've done recently were a joke moderated to +5, Funny and, more recently, a post explaining why OS X's closed Aqua layer allows for the *potential* of NSA backdoors, though I of course never postulate that there are any in there, just that the potential exists. Which it does. There have been many pieces of NSA-requested backdoored software, Lotus Notes (at the height of its popularity, natch) being the best example. The Chinese government also announced that they had found an NSA backdoor in Windows, which is one reason they have joined a few other Asian countries in building (and standardizing on) their own brand of Gnu/Linux.

One of these posts got me BANNED. Look at them and decide which one the editors thought was worthy of banning me for. What you find will certainly tell you something interesting.

In the meantime, I await a response from the editors -- which I believe is not forthcoming.

Journal Journal: BANNED!!!

Banned from posting today because of this.

Tried to post today, got this message: Due to excessive bad posting from this IP or Subnet, comment posting has temporarily been disabled. If it's you, consider this a chance to sit in the timeout corner . If it's someone else, this is a chance to hunt them down. If you think this is unfair, please email with your MD5'd IPID and SubnetID....

Everything else for a long time has been Insightful and Informative and Funny. Now one moderator who has no sense of humour and I'm banned? The joke wasn't even close to a "troll", but was unfairly moderated as such. "Unfunny", perhaps, but "Troll"?

ONE bad post, and I'm *banned* -- unless I've been hacked and some troll is posting through my computer or something, but I doubt it (Macs have a good record for security, and I'm totally patched).

I emailed as requested, but of course, there has been no response -- so I still don't know what these mysterious "Troll" posts were. I'm amazed I can have excellent karma and be banned at the same time. All over one weak joke, harshly moderated.

User Journal

Journal Journal: iMovie 6

Using iMovie to make a slideshow for my brother-in-law's wedding, I'm amazed at how good the software is. It doesn't even irritate me. Perhaps I'm being seduced by the dark side. After all, I did initially use "Tonight We Murder" by Ministry as the slideshow music.

Needless to say, it did NOT pass the wife test. Nor did the blank title slide which simply said "Who *ARE* these people?"

User Journal

Journal Journal: +3, Funny

Check out the moderation in this thread to see the pathetic lack or regard moderators have for quality. Brutally inept.

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