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User Journal

Journal Journal: The Greatest Privacy Policy Ever... 9

In Mainah-speak, I'd say that this privacy policy is, "A riaght pissah." (That spelling looks about right. For those not in the 'know' I'm kind of fond of the various American dialects and the various colorful olloquialisms. I'm also missing home.)

Anyhow, I want to quote it but I don't want to steal the guy's thunder. So, you seriously need to see this:
http://www.donationbasedhosting.org/privacy-policy/

As in, seriously... It's amusing, informative, interesting, and insightful - all at the same time. I kind of want to host with the guy but I don't think I've anything that's server-appropriate. He's just got one server and probably has quite a few people on it.

Actually, my spying button says they've only got 14 domains hosted on the one server and he's got a single Debian box at Linode.

At any rate, that page needs more attention. It's quite funny. It's the best privacy policy that I've seen lately.

Speaking of which, I have to/want to do some custom error pages. I know the mechanism but I lack the creativity to do something enjoyable with them. I gotta find something creative to do with 'em. Maybe random redirects, just to screw with people.

If anyone's interested in checking out my project, lemme know. There's a bunch of goals but the idea of the site is generally fostering a place for intelligent discourse/civil discussion. The idea being that it's possible to remain civil while debating or discussing any topic and the site tries to make that possible while offering a number of ways to participate as a registered or anonymous user. The entire thing is also an attempt to demonstrate something (in the manner of a wager that is still ongoing) where it must be entirely self-funding - it's a bit of a competition against "traditional" social media which I think is unnecessary but not overly evil, in and of itself. This was the best idea I could come up with to demonstrate my belief and, if nothing else, it has been rather fun and it has been great to relearn a lot of stuff.

It's oddly timed but the site is moving to a new server shortly but that actually has nothing to do with the site that I linked to. I found that site by clicking around the Chrome extension site and it looked like an interesting name for a hosting company, so I clicked. Then it didn't appear to be much of a hosting site. So, I clicked around and the privacy policy was what I clicked on. And then I giggled like a little schoolgirl. :/

Oh, it's http://kgiii.gq if you're curious about the project. I'll just link it here, instead of in the comments or by email. Feel free to stop by, sign up, whatever. Basically, anyone that participates gets turned into an author eventually. Ideally, the site will self-fund and be handed off to a committee of site participants who can then decide how it is run in perpetuity. I've actually had a couple of similar projects in the past. However, it has been a long time since I've done any coding, tweaking, editing, and whatnot. So, I've (re)learned a lot and it's great 'cause it's keeping me busy while I wait a while longer as I'm still trying to get permission to go to Cuba before I return to Maine.

I don't think I'm going to get to go.

User Journal

Journal Journal: New Slashdot Feature - Paid Posts. 4

I didn't notice any update or information given from on-high but I will say that I am neither offended nor bothered by it and I appreciate the honest. I even made it a point to click through it. Odd, too, 'cause it required multiple clicks - my security software wasn't fond of it. No, it wasn't malicious, but it's an add and the MS MVPS Hosts file (incorporated in uMatrix & uBlock Origin) has that listed. So, I told it to temporarily allow it to pass. And it did.

So, Whipslash, congratulations. It's not intrusive, it's not misleading, it's not over-powering, it's not unacceptable. I, for one, appreciate that. I value that you took the time to do so without making it problematic or a burden to work around. Seriously, thanks. I might even click on a few - I might even go so far as to buy something from one of the companies. You never know... It could happen.

I'd just urge you all to not go overboard but I don't think that's going to be a problem. You've shown fine judgment so far and I've every reason to believe you'll continue to do so in the future. I'm thinking it's probably best to not allow comments in those threads - good choice. We've got our share of idiots here. Hell, we've got more than our share of idiots here.

So, thanks. Thanks for looking for *good* ways to monetize the site and to keep the site afloat. It being easy to notice is the icing on the cake. Others may disagree with me. I'm inclined to think they're idiots if they do. Unicorn farts only get you so far. Eventually, it has to have money.

User Journal

Journal Journal: So, this is interesting - Firefox... 14

It's fairly well known how I feel about Firefox. I don't like it much and I use it long enough to install Opera. It's default on most every Linux distro out there. I much prefer Opera. At the same time, I'm not some crazy zealot and I don't actively dislike Firefox. I don't uninstall it. I keep it updated, I use it once in a while, and it has its own special tabs that open by default when I open it. It gets used.

On the other hand, I've pretty much used Opera since 1998 or something like that. I don't even remember when I first found it. When I first found it, it would let you block images (such as ads) right from the browser itself. It was built in. It had "fit to width" which meant that you clicked a button and the width of the text filled the entire page. I seem to recall that you could actually adjust the margins for that somewhere. Then, not much later, it got tabs and the world went crazy with tabs not long after.

It was a start of a whole new adventure. Netscape ended up eventually turning into Mozilla. Microsoft got sued pretty handily for their market manipulations (which is a topic for another day). They also got popped for screwing with the world via their fake Java (or was it JavaScript? I'm kind of stoned - again - can tell I'm ready to go home).

And a whole bunch of new browsers came out - changing the web as we know it. No, really, the rest of the web changed as we know it. Opera had some impact on those changes and it was well worth the price I paid for the privilege to use their browser. I bought licenses for friends and I didn't even have much money back then. I liked Opera that much.

Anyhow, I've pretty much used Opera since then. There was one point, from about version to 15 to 23, that they really sucked and for that time, and that time only, they've not been my default browser - since about 1998. It was a fairly quick process, actually. They just POOF went retarded and changed from Presto to Chromium/Blink or whatever is under Chromium.

And it sucked. I'm not gonna lie about it just because I used them. No, they straight up sucked donkey balls. It was unstable, unwieldy, unsecured, and unacceptable. It really was unacceptable. I didn't go rail and rant at them. I didn't have to - people are STILL yelling at them and we're all the way on version 37 now. Dev is 38 and Stable is 36.

Anyhow, that's where I stand on Opera. I've said it before, I'll say it again. I don't care what browser you use. I use what works best for me. For a while, that was quite distinctly, anyone but Opera. At about version 23 it became tolerable again. At about 28 it became acceptable again. At about 31 it became good again. I've got some pretty high standards but at about version 24 I decided to switch back to Opera as my default and to go see if there was something I could do to help - it's open source. So far so good, except I've only given them one idea that they decided to act on. There's still a few more things that would be neat to see. I might actually write an extension myself to fix the remaining issue. That'll be neat.

As I was saying...

So, I read an AC post earlier. They said they were really surprised about the Developer version of Firefox. Now, I knew what the developer tools where and I knew there was a developer's edition and that the two are not the same.

If you're using one of the Ubuntu flavors or derivatives, then it's not the "firefox-dev" that you find by searching the app. In fact, you don't even really need to install it if you don't want. You can, there's a PPA for it. But, it's this version:

https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/channel/#developer

I kid you not... It's not bad, it's not bad at all. It's not only not bad - it's REALLY good. It's a whole different version than the regular Firefox. It's entirely different. Just extract it and run the firefox-bin and you're good to go. It's light, responsive, and... I'm not sure how to say this?

The developer tools? Err... There's more to them than you see in any other browser that I know of BUT... They're actually good. They're pretty good, even. I was kind of shocked. I still am. I've been beating the piss out of it all night. I started beating on it this afternoon. If you really hammer on it then I think it might grow into a memory leak over time - but I've not had it open that long. I've had a ton of tabs open in it. (No, not 500 like some of you weirdos.)

It's fantastically good. It really is. I can't stress that enough.

If you've not given Firefox a try lately or you've not tried the Aurora edition then give it a shot. Here's a slightly different link:

https://hacks.mozilla.org/2012/05/firefox-and-the-release-channels/

No, it's not going to become my new default browser. That's EXTREMELY unlikely. It will, on the other hand, take the place of one of the Opera versions in my line-up/order of procession. I use Opera beta as my default. I have the browsers set for different tasks. My next favorite is Developer. It opens its own set of tabs, has its own special folders on the speed dial, and sits on a second monitor or on its own virtual monitor. Then comes the stable version, if you're curious.

But... I think that Firefox is going to become the second browser. No, I know it's going to - or at least it's getting an extended audition as my second browser. The developer tools are really good. That's what I use Opera's for, I do the checking and configurations in that browser usually. Then I have the stable build open on a third physical or virtual monitor and that keeps my extended searches. If I'm researching something and want to have that open and read to stay with just a few tabs - that's the browser to do it with. (Then I might test in a few other browsers.)

So, no... It's good enough seeming, at this point and after this series of tests for the past dozen hours or so, like it is a very good browser. It's good enough for me to give it second place and that's saying something - I think. I am fast approaching 20 years with Opera. I am giving up a slot that's been devoted to Opera for a fairly decent portion of that 20 years. If I had to stop using Opera tomorrow AND if the developer build is as nice as it was to me today then I'd not mind switching.

As it is, I kind of neat to be ready to switch. Opera's sale to the Chinese company may go through and I'm not sure what direction they'll take the project. I was expecting to go to Vivaldi or Pale Moon or Chromium. If it happens that they destroy the browser beyond all repair, I'll go with Firefox developer as my main browser and work my way down from there. To be completely clear, I might not even mind the switch much at all. I'm really that impressed with the speed, display, resource usage, easy of access to the tools I want, and then some...

I can say this with 100% certainty. When I woke up this morning, I was not even remotely aware that I'd be saying this by this evening. Yes, yes I'm that impressed.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Autorefresh 23

It appears that autorefresh still works. If you were a fan then it's:
https://slashdot.org/?source=autorefresh

It still appears to work. There are times when I still prefer it and I've learned to work around it. I don't mind it refreshing and I was sad to see it go. I'd have complained but enough people disliked it so that I didn't bother complaining about them removing it.

(Just because I like something is no reason for me to bitch about other people getting their way - I'm just not that kind of idiot.)

Actually, there are a whole lot of that kind of idiot types out there. Some of them frequent this site. I'm reminded a bit of the recent story where people were OUTRAGED!!! that there were pretty girls at an after-party at a gaming convention. No! Other people may not have fun that I myself would not enjoy! Stupid fucking pricks, the lot of 'em.

The usual names showed up. I asked them the various questions and got the usual non-answers. Some of them had mod points but others came along and fixed it. There is an unusual trend in moderating lately.

Suggesting that people take responsibility, make informed choices, and accept the consequences of their actions is seen as trolling. Even though, I assure you, I was not trolling. Speculating that one made an agreement without reading and understanding the details (easily spelled out) is bad form, it seems. Suggesting that one is not entitled to alter an agreement that they made also makes me smug, or so I'm told.

How to elaborate? That was the Netflix proxy banning thing...

"I paid to watch it!"
"No, you paid to watch it while physically in a specific location - you, personally, present in that physical location. You did read the terms of service - right?"
"Don't be fucking smug!"
"You're saying that you are entitled to break the agreement that you signed, entitled for more than you paid for, are entitled to continue to break the rules you know about or should know about, and I'm the smug person? Really?"

That's the gist of it. The moderators gobbled it up. I'm glad they did it to me instead of someone else - I've got karma points to burn. I'm not even sure if it's possible for me to go below the "excellent karma" rating without a very concerted effort. So, it doesn't bother me but I dislike the trend that I'm seeing. It is getting worse and I see it happening more to others than it does to me.

Advocating accountability cuts both ways. If you want the businesses to be accountable, how about accepting some fucking responsibility yourselves? Why the hell are we enforcing immaturity? Why the hell are we attempting to silence (what more is voting down) someone advocating making informed choices and accepting accountability for those choices?

It speaks of a larger societal problem. I noticed a similar trend in many other threads but I also noticed it in the thread concerning Microsoft's gaming convention with scantily clad women. It appears that I'm a bad person for pointing out that nobody was hurt and that this was not the only option for entertainment. See, they weren't obligated to ogle women - that was optional. Not one person was hurt. Being offended was optional and stupid. There's no reason to be offended, outraged, or even unhappy.

Yes, if there were no other sources of amusement then you might be unhappy. If it were during a talk then, by all means, get irate. But this? They're just inventing reasons to be pissed off. I noticed the moderation in that thread as well and it confirms my belief that there are people spending points in absolutely retarded ways. Again, I'm immune - I don't give a shit *except* that it impacts people who do give a shit. That's not cool people, not cool at all.

Think about what you're saying. You're saying that being outraged over non-events is acceptable. You're saying that personal responsibility is not acceptable. You're saying that nobody is allowed to do things you don't like - even if it harms nobody. You're saying that people don't have to make informed choices - and I can tell you that the use of Netflix service is clearly laid out and in plain language. They're quite specific about who the watcher is and where the watcher must be physically located, for example.

If you don't like the rules - don't give them your money. If you give them your money, live by the rules. This is pretty basic and yes, the suggestions go beyond people just using free speech to be unhappy. Saying that you have a right to the content is surely free speech, it's just stupid. You quite clearly do not have that right. Using the products of another person's labor without payment and express permission is slavery. It is all the more amusing when it is done in reverse. The hypocrisy is thick.

Ah well... I'd go on but that's rant enough.

The important thing is that autorefresh still works. Just use this address:
https://slashdot.org/?source=autorefresh

I do wish there were a switch somewhere. I imagine that someone could make such a thing, pretty easily, with GreaseMonkey/ViolentMonkey. Hell, you could probably fit it into Stylish somewhere. Or, you can still just use the URL and have autorefreshing done for you.

It does not appear to work on older pages - by default. You'll have to append the URL manually and then make it autorefresh from there. I can see that being handy - I often only prefer it autorefresh on the home page. I'm often a few pages back (I usually read oldest to newest) so having it refresh and mess things up was sometimes confusing.

I understand that refreshing might actually impact moderation points but I think that's on the articles themselves. Those who fall in the average, for article views, get moderation points - assuming they're eligible, or so I understand. That's how they described it when the system came out. I'm guessing it has made some changes since then. I do not actually use my moderation points so I don't really know.

Nope... I don't moderate at all. Ever. I haven't in a long time. I think the system noticed? I don't get moderation points as often - even though nothing else has really changed. I just don't spend 'em and they seem to stop giving them to me as often. I'm kind of grateful. I do, sometimes, meta-mod but I don't ever moderate. Who am I to judge? Besides, I'd rather say my opinion than signify what others should think of it devoid of any context.

Finally, as some of you know, I'm hoping to go to Cuba. I've got some folks who are trying to help hurry the process along but I went all last week without any new information except that it can take up to 90 days. *sighs* I don't HAVE 90 days and, by then, they'll have been inundated with well-meaning idiots and they'll be shredding the culture to pieces. I'd like to see it before its gone. I've been twice and loved it, I'd like to go officially and be able to have my passport proudly stamped with it. However, I might just fly in to Mexico and then fly over. If I don't give any notice (I'm not gonna admit to it publicly before going) and I just *poof* for a few days - that's probably where I am.

Sadly, I won't be able to tell people before I go. I may get my passport stamped just to piss 'em off at this point. However, I'm not a huge fan of burning bridges unless i have to. But... In the words of the immortal Kurt Vonnegut, "So be it."

User Journal

Journal Journal: I might get to go exploring... 2

There's a chance, today or tomorrow, that I find out that I have the chance to do a little bit of exploring. We shall see and I'll hopefully return with pictures for those who are interested. I don't want to get my hopes up too high but I did crawl out of bed at 0530 to start making some phone calls.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Follow Slashdot on Google+ 7

Slashdot is finally back on Google+. Follow us if you're interested in keeping up with new posts via Google+. The old page was lost a couple of years ago by the previous ownership, but we are back and every post on Slashdot will appear on our Google+ page.

You can keep up with all our changes and improvements at the Slashdot blog.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Observation and the Coming of the new Slashdot Overlords! 32

Since the arrival of the new overlords, I've observed a trend. It's a good trend, I think?

See, I pay attention to usernames and, with that, I often note the UUID number. Since the announcement that the site has sold, I'm seeing some familiar names that I've not seen in a while. I'm also observing an increased number of posts from folks with a lower number.

There are a variety of reasons that I may be seeing this but, to be clear, I didn't just start paying attention to the names and numbers recently. No, I've been noticing them for years.

At any rate, I dare say that this is a good thing. The articles seem to be improving (from what people are saying - 'snot like I'm a heretic and going to admit to reading them) and the comments seem to be marginally improved but that may be a matter of perception and the latter due to confirmation bias. I suppose that means we can be nice to the new owners of the site.

As an aside, they seem to be aware that they just own the site and only that. I've noted (and mentioned to one of them) that they've not stressed it but I think the attitude is there. They've referred to us as a community as opposed to calling a an audience. That makes me think good things may be in store and it appears that I'm not alone.

User Journal

Journal Journal: I don't watch TV or read news magazines or anything and I just found this... 13

There's that guy, the HIV drug price gouger guy, named Martin Shkreli. I hadn't been to Cracked in a long time but I was bored and I needed amusement. Holy shit! I'm not usually a violent person and, really, I honestly hadn't given two shits about this story until just now.

That dude has the most punchable face I have ever seen. Seriously, I'd take the $500 fine and time served to punch him in the face. I bet I can break his jaw in just one punch - and I'm just a little fella at exactly 172 pounds (I am almost always exactly that weight) and 5' 11". I'm really just a fairly little person and I'm still reasonably certain that I'd hear a nice satisfying crunchy sound.

I still don't really give a shit about the story and I'm still kind of curious where he's going with this (besides prison) but I really want to crack him in the jaw. How odd, really. I'm normally really not that violent at all. It's not like it'd be a felony so I'd not lose my right to bear arms. I'd not use a weapon or anything. I'd just crack him once in the jaw and then laugh until they came and arrested me. I'd then bail out. I'd plea bargain for time served, a $500 fine, and pay his hospital bills after a civil trial. It'd be so worth it.

Maybe I can get the missus to record it on her phone. I got her a new phone the other day and she's been busy recording most everything that moves and a few things that don't move. I've since suggested she go get a real video recording device so maybe she'll find one that she likes and pick that up. Then, I just need to find Mr. Martin Shkreli and see if he minds if she records it while I crack him in the jaw. I'm a polite person, after all. It'd only be the proper thing to ask his opinion on the matter. He might want the recording for court. It's not like a misdemeanor and a civil trial scare me. Hell, it won't even have been the first time I've been in a situation like that. It will be the first time I've had someone record the evidence.

How does he make it through the day without someone constantly running up and cracking him in the jaw? It's truly the most punchable face that I recall seeing.

User Journal

Journal Journal: To the cow guy...

kgiii@kgiii-desktop-8:~$ fortune | cowsay >> /home/kgiii/Documents/moo.txt

kgiii@kgiii-desktop-8:~$ leafpad /home/kgiii/Documents/moo.txt

  ________________________________________
/ Just because the message may never be \
| received does not mean it is not worth |
\ sending. /
  ----------------------------------------
                \ ^__^
                  \ (oo)\_______
                    (__)\ )\/\
                      ||----w |
                      || ||

How very appropriate. Formatting is a bit screwed but still appropriate.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Vivaldi - it's not that bad.

I've been playing with Vivaldi a little bit lately. It is a pretty interesting concept and one I've not really seen before. Much of it is written in HTML5, it's fairly easy to customize, and has a lot of interesting features. It is currently in the Technical Preview Stage, consider it more of a concept, and there are plenty of bugs but it's workable and has some traits not seen in other browsers.

Probably the most interesting one is that here, on this site, it matches the green color that is Slashdot. Yes, it's just colors itself like a chameleon depending on where you are. You can, it seems, also change the colors on your own but I've not actually looked into that.

It currently takes a bit of work to get extensions installed but the extensions from Chrome (and also Opera) should all work just fine with it. It's built on the same code base as Chromium. Which means it also inherits some of the Chromium problems. Currently, for example, there's no H.264 support for Linux users and the work-around for Opera probably won't work for Vivaldi.

There's no switch to disable hardware acceleration so you'll need to start it from the terminal until Chromium gets off their asses and gets that squared away (the problem is upstream). You can start it from the terminal with:

vivaldi --disable-gpu-compositing

Give it a shot. You might find it interesting and, as it is still early in development, you may be able to help guide them into crafting a browser that meets your needs. Also, they're giving away free webmail but, really, who doesn't already have enough webmail accounts available? I can only assume that it will support POP3 and IMAP later in life.

What say you, Slashdot? Can we screw it up beyond belief? Yes we can! Seriously, give it a shot. You might find it an interesting browser. I'll keep playing with it for now.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Ask Slashdot (sort of): Anyone know anything about boats? 6

I have the chance to buy a boat. I don't know anything about boats. This boat is a big boat. It is 70' long, it has masts and stuff - it also has a couple of engines (one of which is a generator) and has stuff like onboard desalination (I guess?) and stuff. It has two masts. I'd show a picture but I've been asked not to - the reason given is that this market is considered competitive and they don't want people to know that it's for sale or an indicator of price or some gibberish like that.

I should mention the seller, while not a friend, is an associate whom I've known for a while and calling them eccentric would be fairly generous.

Now, this boat is in Barbados. It has taken some external damage and has 'severe' engine damage as well as needing a 'near total reconditioning.' I did find a company in Florida that will go get it for me and their price isn't too bad (I think?) so that's not a problem.

The person selling this boat let the insurance lapse and now the boat is damaged. They don't have the money to do the repairs. They've offered this to me at a price that is pretty damned high. (People pay that much for boats? Their asking price is in the 9 digit range but they paid much, much more for it not that long ago - like 15 years ago.)

Now they have estimates and statements of value. So the estimated return on my investment would be well over 200% though I'd need to "park" my money for up to a "few years" or more.

I mention, again, that they're kind of eccentric so details are pretty sparse. I've bought a lot of expensive things in my time but I don't even own a boat with a motor. I also don't know a damned thing about boats except that port is left and stern is the front. I also haven't ever piloted nor do I want to pilot anything of this size. Hell, I don't even like boats.

But it does seem like an awfully tempting investment. I tried to find a professional to deal with this but it would appear that I don't know the first thing about boats. All my searching has found me nothing. My research also indicates that the current market for boats is pretty slow.

I've also been told that owning a boat is akin to owning a hole in the water in which to deposit money. However, I don't want to really OWN a boat - I want to not even see the boat. This boat had a skipper but the skipper has run away. The exact phrase was, indeed, "run away."

They want me to call them back tonight. I've already sent an email indicating that it will take me longer than that to do some research. They indicate they have interested parties (why contact me?) and that it's a potentially quick sale (again, why contact me?) but I do know them personally and they do indeed have a boat - I have personally seen his boat before.

I suspect it's my ready access to capital and that they've no buyers "lined up" at all but are hoping to pressure me into making a quick choice. Fortunately (maybe) I'm a cautious critter and don't really want a boat.

Anyhow, I'd have to have this boat refloated, tugged out, put on the back of another boat, brought to Florida (or Maine - probably Maine), and have the damned thing fixed. It also appears the people who do these things are pretty busy so this won't be quick. I guess I can "afford" it (for a limited definition of afford) and all and I'm not one to shy away from taking risks but I honestly don't know a damned thing about boats and I've been researching and calling for a couple of days now.

I mean, if Slashdot can help me find my favorite Linux distro (and send me on a personal quest of wanderlust and insight) then how can they not help me when it comes to boats? You guys know everything. I'm actually willing to pay a boat expert (do they have a specific name?) to make this choice for me. I don't think that it helps that I'm not home and won't be home for the foreseeable future (subject to another journal post, perhaps).

Finally, boats have butt-loads of geeky stuff on them. At least this boat does. It has radar, GPS, radio, engines and a couple of masts for sailing I guess, and other assorted stuff. I suppose if the damned thing doesn't sell I can either learn to love a boat or just suck up my losses, learn to never buy a boat again, and give it to the University of Maine's oceanographic biology department. I can, at least, write it off and offset some tax liability but that's a whole other long and detailed subject.

By the way, I don't have a huge attachment to buying a boat. I do kind of like the idea of reselling the boat at a decent profit - that is what is attractive. (Don't worry, various charities - including EFF - will get some of the profit.) Sorry if my writing is unclear, I'm not an author and my grasp of the English language is not so very good. Sad, really, I've been attempting to speak it for the vast majority of my life.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Strange revelations - hacker manifesto, set to music? 2

So, it's a very long story but I'm still in Buffalo, I have my reasons. In fact, my reason is in her hotel room (again, a very long story) and nearly forty years my junior. However, one of the many discussions we've been having... And no, it's not that type of relationship, perverts. I may opine on this later but I'm due to go to the movies in a little while.

Where was I? Oh, yes... One of the things we've had discussions about has been hacker culture, code, mathematics, computer history, technology, etc... See, I met her when she was beating up her poor laptop and I opined that that was no way to treat a computer. She told me it was an "old piece of junk." Being who I am, well, I offered to take a look at her poorly behaving PC and it actually gets stranger from there. It's a very long story.

Where was I again? Oh yes. So, I got her computer running and got her convinced to give Linux a try and we backed up her required documents and were on our way. Then we were hungry and, well, I've been a gentleman ever since. That was some days ago but, I digress and am in a bit of a rush tonight.

Anyhow, I tell you that to tell you this. While we were having dinner (and I am skipping a lot of the story for the sake of brevity) tonight, I happened to be expanding on the history of ethical hacking - after a long conversation that hacking didn't mean doing nefarious things and that coders were, indeed, hackers. So, the conversation went a bit like this:

Me, "Yeah, it's neat. Lots of them have their credos." Talking about ethical hacking at this point. "You could say it's their hacker manifesto."

Her, "You mean like that old song?"

Me, "You'll have to narrow that down."

Her, "You know, some German band. My mom likes her. 99 Red Balloons."

Me, "WTF?"

Her, "Umm... Maybe I am not getting you?"

Me, "No, you probably are. I suspect I'm not getting you. Lemme Google this." (Goes on to Google lyrics and is quite surprised at revelations.)

So, her gift to me and now mine to you is this, the lyrics to 99 Red Balloons revisited with today's hindsight.

You and I in a little toy shop
Buy a bag of balloons
With the money we've got
Set them free at the break of dawn
'Till one by one, they were gone
Back at base, bugs in the software
Flash the message
"Something's out there"

Floating in the summer sky
99 red balloons go by

99 red balloons
Floating in the summer sky
Panic bells, it's red alert
There's something here
From somewhere else
The war machine springs to life
Opens up one eager eye
Focusing it on the sky
99 red balloons go by

99 Decision Street
99 ministers meet
To worry, worry, super-scurry
Call the troops out in a hurry
This is what we've waited for
This is it boys, this is war

The president is on the line
As 99 red balloons go by

[Instrumental Interlude]

99 Knights of the air
Ride super-high-tech jet fighters
Everyone's a Superhero
Everyone's a Captain Kirk
With orders to identify
To clarify and classify

Scramble in the summer sky
As 99 red balloons go by

As 99 red balloons go by

99 dreams I have had
In every one a red balloon
It's all over and I'm standin' pretty
In this dust that was a city
If I could find a souvenier
Just to prove the world was here

And here is a red balloon
I think of you and let it go

I really wanted to add comments to it and whatnot but I'll leave that to you as I'm lacking time. I've got to leave at about 7:15. I bolded what was most interesting but there's so much more to bold and pontificate about... So much... How very odd.

If you want to watch it then, by all means, here's a link:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XEIU-kdxkAU

Anyhow, I... I... I had no idea? I'd never interpreted it that way (or even really paid attention to it). That song actually is deep and meant something? Or is it just deep and meaningful in retrospection? By the way, it could be construed as unethical hacking but that's not really the important part. The important part is her sharing this and my ensuing excitement.

Also, yes, yes she is a cutie... However, it's a long story. If you think THIS is a long post then, well, if I decide to type the rest it will make this seem like Cliff's Notes.

I'll try to peek in and see if there's a reply and then, of course, I'll be here later. After all, there are some things you ask your friend and family about. Then there are other things you just don't want to ask them because their opinions are all biased so you're stuck asking /b/ or Slashdot. I don't really want to post pics (or it didn't happen) so I may actually ask Slashdot just to see the replies.

Why not? I mean, you have given me great advice before. I'd have never tried Linux Mint without you guys recommending it, I'd have stuck with CentOS or something. Hell, I'm even on my journey because a Slashdotter sort of recommended it. You're a surprisingly wise bunch as a group. (And no, no I'm not drinking, drunk, or otherwise overly intoxicated - I might be a little high.)

Anyhow, I'm off to see a movie shortly. The theater is just down the road a spell and I'll obviously have my phone (on silent) with me. Me? Go somewhere without a computer? I don't see that happening. Also, she's smart and a budding geek. Life is too confusing. *sighs* I hate popcorn.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Mindless Linux Drivel... 6

So, as those who "know me" know, I am a long-winded poster who adds inane drivel more often than not. It is a pass-time and a lot of the time I simply can not say what I wanted to say in a short blurb. My thoughts do not fit on a bumper sticker. If they did then they would be so superficial that they would not be worth adding to the conversation. Also, many folks like to argue and this argument seems to come from them not actually understanding what I wrote. Replies frequently look like, "I agree entirely what you said. You dumbass!" This means I take care to include all of the information that I have because I can not reasonably assume that the readers will have that information. It is not like I am all the bright or anything - I just express myself poorly so I make up for it with verbosity.

Having said that I will add that I frequently type out long, well thought out (I think), replies only to stop and think about it before clicking the send button. (Imagine that. Thinking before posting? Life is strange after a few years of not drinking.) Sometimes, perhaps more often or perhaps less often, I will delete/cancel those posts. They usually address the subject that I am replying to but are only tangentially related to the actual subject of the thread.

Today I authored a response to a zing at Samsung for having disabled Windows Update recently. I finished it, typed it all out, and hit the preview button only to realize that it was so far off topic, and such a high word count (low for me), that it simply would not be a good response. Rather than hitting the almighty enter button and submitting my drivel to the thread's page I figured that this is my journal and I can post anything I damned well please in it.

Then I thought about how badly used the journal feature is here. It really is a nice feature for what it is. It is not much but it does what it does well. It allows you to post drivel in amongst other folks posting drivel and it is never consumed or lightly consumed meaning that you are only stroking your own ego by posting it. See? Simple. I defy you, nay - three of you, to spend an hour in my head! They tell me that I am sane. I tell them that is the same thing the voices in my head tell me. They'll take me serious when I blow up my own lawn gnomes!

Anyhow, I figured I would post that comment here. It is mostly being posted because I think I may like to come back to it and visit it again someday. It is not well written, it does not have witty insights or pithy sayings, and it isn't anything important. So, I am not going to edit my response to suit, I am just going to post it as it was originally authored. If you read it then I can only call you a sucker and say that you were warned.

I hope so. I am an old UNIX then various flavors of Linux user. I have alway, pretty much, had an open source OS on one of my partitions in the past many years. Somewhere, near XP SP2, I just stopped using FOSS desktops as my OS. I am not sure why. I still used Linux in the real world. But, I just stopped. I have taken my three most used compute devices (two laptops and a desktop) and converted them entirely to Linux Mint (I call it Linux for Retards - like me).

I have an MSDN subscription, a nice one too, and I suspect I will set a new system up with 10 on it and use that to do my dev play as VS, honestly, can not be beaten, yet. I will probably keep paying Microsoft many dollars for my subscription. It is automatic so... Well... I will never actually disable it. My heirs will be paying it long after I die.

So, I would like to say - yes, get rid of Windows Updates. They would bork up my Linux for Retards installs (I am now so intimate with the installer that I am planning on sexxing it tonight). It is good to be back though I keep dropping into the terminal to get shit done. I am not sure why.

Anyhow, I am an addict. But, today makes 13 days and I am so far behind on /. that I think I am first. (Woohoo! First post!) I wonder... If I send Mint a bunch of money if they will send me a living person to be my "enterprise support." She has to be cute and well versed in all things Linux that I have not noticed change over the years. Also, we need to work on that whole partitioning thing. I buy big laptops that have slots for two drives so I can avoid partitioning for now but they are almost as scarce as hen's teeth. I may need a Windows guru with source code access. I can get (and have) some Windows source but I can not restrap it and make my own bootloader that recognizes pre-existing Linux distros and installs around them. Also Grub has sucked, does suck, and seemingly always will suck ballsacks.

I am going to have to start hiding in closets and shooting up Microsoft Office too. It will run in WINE they said. It runs fine in WINE they said. Just use OOo.org they said. Use the online Word they said. Those fuckers need to die a painful death.

Also, LinuxMint, it's for retards. As a user, I fully endorse this statement. It is nicely unified aesthetically. It's as stable as a female pop singer by the time I get to it. Cinnamon won't start? Revert to blind man status? Abso-friggen-lutely. That is what I want you to do. How about piping an error message to me as the default action? No... It will take me longer to figure the bug out, reinstall. Where did boot logging go, anyhow? You know what? I have no idea because nobody seems to care enough to point it out to me and my google-fu is lacking. It is a moot point now, I can just re-install the bastard in a half hour or so and be done with it. I lose a few settings and the next install means I did not go back and tick that box. (Though if I knew which box it was, I would break it. I had not even done anything special to it.)

Finally, I suppose, I am done with my rant. Instead of just dicking with Linux I am using it as my main OS for now on. I will probably switch distos. I have been playing with a lot of VMs so I have tried every one of the top 20 at the distrowatch site. I will, likely, be switching to Mageia next even though openSUSE gave me a handy under the table at a fancy restaurant. I will not be going with FreeBSD because the installer is stupid and I am stupider. ArchLinux, openSUSE, and even PCLINUX (better than expected actually) get a nod as well. Fedora, Ubuntu, and CentOS do not suck so much as I can not stand what is essentially a taskbar in the wrong spot. I am not going to change desktops to something different as I always end up wasting too much time figuring out the dependencies. I am sure there is an easier way but I am fickle and will just move along. Slackware looks really nice but I sort of did not play around with it as much as I should have so I will reserve judgment until I have done so.

What the hell were we talking about again?

Oh yes. Samsung was disabling Windows Update a while back. They stopped it. I read it here on this site. If they said it then it must be true. They can not post lies on the internet. Anyhow, at this point, albeit a bit flustered and exhausted, I would say that that is almost a good thing.

So, there it is. If someone should deign themselves worthy of calling me names, giving insight, belittling, or even just babbling about stupid stuff then there it is, in all its glory. I do wish I could disable moderating in journal posts. It serves no function.

Cellphones

Journal Journal: Email to SMS

I just blogged about a site that I had found that listed a bunch of the email addresses to send text messages with. It covers a lot of the providers, not just those in the United States. Rather than shamelessly plug my own blog the site's located here.

Then again, if you wanted to stop by the blog you can do that here. I'd rather you go to the original site instead of the blog though as the blog isn't ad supported or the likes.

Social Networks

Journal Journal: Troll Motivations 3

My karma is so high that I am now limited to waiting a rather long time before I am able to submit a new response. It seems to me that it would be the other way around but it isn't. This might be seen as incentive to make trolling/flame responses, if my karma were lower I'd get to post more often.

It must be getting time to have a drunken night of random reality posts.

"Sorry but Linux actually kind of sucks in some ways." (Then don't bother to justify it until several posts later.)

"GPL != freedom at all; GPL is about restricting rights." (Then don't bother to explain how it is more restrictive until a day or two later.)

"Smart people will vote Republican!" (Except I can't really explain that one.)

I just have to do it in a controlled manner so that I don't lose all of my accumulated good karma and have to build it back up again.

Hell, I don't even use mod points when I get them. That's no great loss. I do meta moderate a bunch but as a paid subscriber I'll get to still do that even if I had the worst karma on /....

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