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User Journal

Journal Journal: Linux QL-500 Label Printer Update

While the Brother P-Touch QL-500 is recognized out of the box by Ubuntu, it doesn't really work. Do the following to fix:

1. Go to the Brother driver site and download both the LPR and CUPSWRAPPER driver. http://support.brother.com/g/s/id/linux/en/download_esp.html#QL-500
2. Install both with "sudo apt install ./ql500cupswrapper-1.0.1-0.i386.deb ./ql500lpr-1.0.1-0.i386.deb"

That works.

Ideally, download and use the font "OCR-B", which is freely available from here: http://www.fontpalace.com/font-download/OcrB+Regular/

User Journal

Journal Journal: Wait, how tall is the fuhrer again? 1

They keep claiming that he is 6'3". However we know that Obama is 6'1". here they are standing side-by-side. I think someone forgot his elevator shoes for that picture... here's another picture where Trump's two inches seem to have magically disappeared (or even changed sign). Once again, he still doesn't look taller.

I'm willing to skip the sitting pictures, because different people have different proportions and sit differently in the same chair. I have yet to see a single picture of the two men next to each other that supports the notion of Trump being the 6'3" that he claims.

Considering he is already making a fast claim at least honest POTUS in the history of our nation, it wouldn't surprise me if his height is a lie as well.
Republicans

Journal Journal: Conservative Cowardice On Parade 5

The GOP members of congress made dozens of attempts to repeal the ACA while President Lawnchair was still in office. They never worried about a replacement at the time because they knew their attempts were good publicity as they were guaranteed to fail.

Now they have all the power. Where is the repeal now? Nowhere in sight. Suddenly they have all these extra steps they have to take, when before it was so easy.

This. Is. Bullshit.

What's really going on? Why the foot dragging? Two reasons, the first you hear often.

First, they have no replacement ready. They know the consequences of repealing without replacing . They knew these consequences before, but didn't have any reason to worry about them before. Now they actually need a replacement, so they are intentionally slowing down their own process as they don't have one.

Ultimately, they are going to "replace" the ACA by changing the name from "Obamacare" to "Trumpcare" (or "Pencecare" if Trump is removed from office before it happens).

Second is the reason they don't want anyone to pay attention to. Both the GOP and the democrats are owned by the insurance industry. As much as the insurance industry claims that the ACA has been bad for business, the GOP knows that nothing that deviates strongly from this will keep their owners happy. The insurance industry has such deep pockets in DC that they could very nearly replace every representative in 2018 if they wanted - or at least establish a new majority.

Unfortunately nobody will be willing to call out the GOP on their bullshit with this. The elected democrats are too spineless and afraid of being called "Un-American" by their colleagues.
User Journal

Journal Journal: Keep fucking that chicken 2

A warning for Trump:

You run into an asshole in the morning, you ran into an asshole. You run into assholes all day, you're the asshole,

User Journal

Journal Journal: Intel Wifi Crashing 3

Note to future self.

I was fiddling around with my laptop and broke something. My WiFi kept disconnecting every couple of minutes. A quick look in dmesg showed the iwlwifi kernel module was segfaulting every couple of minutes.

This was new. WTF had I changed? Reminder to self -- don't fiddle with things that matter when really tired.

As it turns out, I had enabled up the amd64-microcode in my system, which is under Additional Drivers in Ubuntu. This played absolute havoc with the Intel WiFi and provided no discernible benefits.

Uncheck box, reboot machine, problem resolved.

User Journal

Journal Journal: How long until President Pence? 41

Game theory would seem to point to sooner rather than later. As of right now, there is almost zero downside (and quite a few perks available if done right.) Of course, this assumes the GOP congresscritters could organize a piss up in a brewery, something that hasn't been a surefire thing since the 90s.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Happy New Year. Good news - and I'm REALLY pissed off. 6

Warning - longish rant

Finally, after years of dealing with major depression and anxiety disorders, it turns out that there was nothing wrong with me except trusting my endocrinologist when he said everything was fine wrt HRT (hormone replacement therapy).

In what is a probably a fine example of medical malpractice, he had me, after 5 years, on 1/4 the starting dose of estrogen. Son! Of! A! Bitch! Of course, low hormone levels lead to all sorts of risks, including depression ... as well as increased bone decalcification, lack of concentration, continual lack of energy, earlier onset dementia and Alzheimer's, higher risks of cardiovascular disease, etc.

Only after accidentally obtaining my actual blood test results, which I had earlier received by mistake, did I find the error. Had to involve the hospital where he works, and he admitted to me he doesn't check estrogen levels "because they vary over the course of the day." Well, that's why we have standard protocols, including standard dose recommendations, dummy!

From the physician's code of ethics:

44. A physician must practice his profession in accordance with the highest possible current medical standards; to this end, he must, in particular, develop, perfect and keep his knowledge and skills up to date

His actions in seriously under-dosing were not "current medical standards", not in my book.

46. A physician must make his diagnosis with the greatest care, using the most appropriate scientific methods and, if necessary, consulting knowledgeable sources.

If you're going to ignore blood tests, you'd better have a damn good excuse, or better yet, maybe it's a good idea to fall back on standard practices?

47. A physician must avoid omissions, procedures or acts which are unsuitable or contrary to the current information in medical science.

So, no ignoring standard practices.

48. A physician must not resort to insufficiently tested examinations, investigations or treatments, unless they are part of a recognized research project and carried out in a recognized scientific milieu.

Oops!

49. A physician must, with regard to a patient who wishes to resort to insufficiently tested treatments, inform him of the lack of scientific evidence relative to such treatments, of the risks or disadvantages that could result from them, as well as the advantages he may derive from the usual care, if any.

It's called "informed consent" for a reason. I was never informed that he was not going to go by established standards of treatment, and certainly would not have consented to it if I had been given the particulars.

55. A physician must not decrease the physical, mental or affective capacities of a patient except where such is required for preventive, diagnostic or therapeutic reasons.

That includes not making bad judgment calls that result in physical and mental symptoms of depression, interfere with concentration on a day-to-day basis, make it impossible to work, etc.

85. A physician must refrain from issuing to any person and for any reason whatsoever a false certificate or any information, either verbal or written, which he knows to be erroneous.

That includes saying blood levels were fine when he now admits he ignores estrogen levels in blood tests that were clearly way too low. WTF???? That's the whole point of HRT - to get estrogen levels to the point where they have a therapeutic effect, not just acting no better than a placebo.

The proof is in the pudding.

What motivated me to look for errors was that nothing over the last few years had offered a real fix to the depression - all sorts of medications, alone or together, in various doses, just didn't work, and the PTSD, which I had dealt with for years, had destabilized 3 years ago. When I recently found myself once more waking up one morning right back in the middle of a really "dark place" wondering why I didn't just kill myself and be done with it for good, just hours after I had told one of my sisters that I thought things were finally, maybe, hopefully, getting better, I figured that since nobody could find what was really wrong, it was time for me to check assumptions, one of which was my endocrinologists' saying that hormone-wise, everything was good. Once I found my mistaken assumption, I quadrupled the dose that night, and woke up better than I had been feeling in years. Makes sense, since hormones act very quickly. A surge of adrenaline in response to anger is immediate. An overdose of insulin will put you on the floor within minutes. And PMS? 'Nuff said. Hormones are strong medicine. (And estrogen is a noted anti-depressant, even in tests of one 4mg patch on male test subjects).

So I'm left with a few questions, one of which is - will my ability to code ever return? Despite believing it won't, I've still fired up the old editor every so often, hoping ... after all, after the sexual assault and flesh eating disease, I drew a blank every time I sat in front of the computer for quite a long time. I told people it took 5 months for it to suddenly just "pop back into place", but it turns out that it was much longer - there was an additional intervening year that "sort of got lost" , and I only figured that out in going over the events to write this last part. Oops. Guess it messed me up more than I remembered. But maybe "losing" that extra year was a good thing.

Only time will tell. But damn, it's sure a fine start to 2017. Hope I'm not the only one who can say that. Take care everyone.

The Almighty Buck

Journal Journal: Sears Announces More Store Closings 6

Sears / KMart - which have been owned under the same corporate umbrella for years now - struggled yet again to make money through this holiday season. After obtaining another line of credit to stay afloat, they have announced the imminent closing of at least 32 stores between the two chains .

That means the retailer will have fewer than 1,500 stores left by early 2017. That's down nearly 60% from 2011, when Sears had more than 3,500 stores.

...

In the most recent quarter, Sears' revenue fell 13%, to $5 billion, and its losses widened to $748 million from $454 million in the period last year.

Same-store sales dropped 7.4%, including a 10% decrease at Sears stores and a 4.4% decrease at Kmart stores.

User Journal

Journal Journal: works for a few weeks only

So last night I'm sitting down at my computer attempting to get serious about learning AngularJS. The problem is that it's a non-MS technology, and so it's used on other OS's and with other non-MS tooling. And the problem with that is, if you actually want to run the downloadable source for these books (!), you basically have to do it before it's published. Because only those particular versions of associated Open Sores technologies will work together, for a very short window of time.

I decided not to learn it from an author I really liked, because later reviews were complaining that the environment doesn't set up anymore. So I got his book as a reference, because he goes in depth, and this other book as a longer tutorial. It mentioned less faggy, Open Source alphabet soup as part of the setup, just nodejs. I tried the last four major versions of it, and none of them worked. I even tried the exact x.y.z version appearing in one of the config files for the book, and that didn't even work.

The goal is not to learn some tertiary technology. I wouldn't even call nodejs secondary, as Angular is about front-end web development, so by definition *any* back-end will do. I'd call Bootstrap secondary, as it seems to often be bundled with Angular, and it's also front-end dev tech. So I could see spending some non-trivial amount of time on delving into that if it didn't set up right. Cuz at least it's more related than less.

But when I'm trying to learn Angular, I'm not going to go off on a long "adventure" trying to fucking figure out nodejs, to troubleshoot it for you Open Sores assholes who can't be bothered to make your shit work for more than 5 minutes. Merry Christmas.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Did it. Moved to Soylent News. 17

From now on I'm just going to come back to read your journal entries. My original UID was in the 40k range. Now that UIDs go up to 100 times that, all I can say is that Sturgeon's Law was optimistic. Way more than 90% of the comments are crap.

It's just not worth the aggravation, not with all the conspiracy theorists, alt-left, alt-right, the SJWs, the libtards, the fundies, the cranks, and every idiot who thinks that their "feeling" something is true even though they can't produce any proof and every medical study says the contrary - "because it's a conspiracy by doctors and drug companies."

I'll pop in in a few days to wish you all a merry xmas - and if it's no longer politically correct to wish people a merry christmas, f*ck you too.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Rogue One 1

Yeeeeesh. Kinda the opposite of the The Force Awakens, weirdly: There's an actual serviceable plot, but none of the characters are given time to develop personalities or motivations. Also, between shitty lines and an underfunded costuming department, Vader looked and sounded like an idiot.

There are a couple of cool moments, and there's a certain satisfaction and integrity present in the fact that R:O is a (mostly) standalone story. But, one thing a Star Wars shouldn't be is boring, and this delivers in spades on that front.

User Journal

Journal Journal: If you want to see just how sucky slashdot has become ... 15

I took some time to read a few stories from the past - part of the whole Novell-SCO/SCOS/SCOXE mess. The difference in quality of the discussions then and now is really telling.

It's like mass-produced chocolate chip cookies. The bean counters slowly remove one or 2 chocolate chips from the mix "because nobody will notice", until one day you wake up and go "What happened?"

I don't think there's any fixing it, for the simple reason that tech has changed. That attracts a different clientele. One with different priorities and interests. Welcome to Facedot ...

User Journal

Journal Journal: Shocked, I tell ya 1

Sheriff Joe Arpaio to hold press conference on Obama birth certificate investigation

Verily tingling with anticipation.

In related news, Cornell Belcher details how race and racism still had a part to play in the 2016 election:
 

Jenée Desmond-Harris

A question a lot of people ask around the question of the role race and racism played in Trumpâ(TM)s election is, âoeHow can you say Americans are concerned with race when they elected Obama?â I know the long answer is in the data presented in your book, but whatâ(TM)s the simple response to that?

Cornell Belcher

They didnâ(TM)t. Thatâ(TM)s the thing here. The majority of whites did not elect Obama, and thatâ(TM)s the wolf at the door. The vast majority of whites did not support President Obama and President Obama won back-to-back majorities, and that caused the realization of their power waning. Mitt Romney ran up a higher score among white voters than Ronald Reagan, when Reagan had a landslide in 1984.

Conservatives may want to take note of this, however:
 

In battleground states, particularly more diverse states, the percentage of white people voting Democrat decreases significantly as that population gets more diverse. So diversity is having an opposite impact that is harmful to Democrats.

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