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User Journal

Journal Journal: Linux and the mouse wheel 8

So, mouse wheel input is fucked in Linux.

There is no way to configure how much the wheel scrolls by. It's fixed. And it's incredibly slow in many apps, and inconsistent between apps because it's up to each one what it does with a single scroll "tick".

Some people have asked on forums and Stack Exchange how to fix it. Turns out, you can't. You can hack around with imwheel, but it translates the wheel into key presses and breaks some apps and is ignored by others. There is libinput, but when I tried it configuration changes had no effect in Cinnamon.

How can something so basic be so broken? It's actually better if you have a trackpad because at least that is configurable.

Chrome is more or less usable if you install an extension to speed up scrolling. Scrolling is not as smooth as Windows, but that could be cause it is running in a VM.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Japanese IME working on Linux Mint

Found some instructions here: http://www.localizingjapan.com/blog/2014/07/29/japanese-input-on-linux-mint-17-qiana-cinnamon/

They are out of date though. Basically you need to install IBus and you chosen IME (I used mozc) and then add it to the list in the IBus preferences. It says "Japanese" in there by default, but that apparently doesn't do anything and you have to install the IME. I would have thought that the basic Japanese entry would have at least let you enter kana... Oh well.

Anyway, it now actually works better than Windows. The mode keys on the keyboard work, which is something that Windows can't handle apparently. At least not if your OS language is English, in which case you have to hack the registry just to get a working Japanese keyboard layout.

Speaking of layouts, I use a custom one on Windows that has extra alt keys for symbols like degrees, Pi, plus/minus and so on. Maybe I can do that under Linux too.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Switching to Linux Mint 10

I'm trying to switch away from Windows 8.1 because Windows 10 is just too much. Decided to start with Linux Mint in a VM.

Installation was smooth and easy. Went for Cinnamon because it's the recommended one. Coped with having a Japanese keyboard and English (not American) locale. Installation was very quick. On first boot a window appeared with some info, one of which was drivers. That offered to install an Intel microcode update so I went for it.

Set screen resolution. Mouse wheel seems laggy, need to look for mouse options later. First thing is updates. The update icon is in the tray area it seems. At first it wasn't doing anything... The output window said that updates were inhibited for some reason. I refreshed it a few times and it found some updates. Selected a local mirror.

Updates installed quickly and relatively easily. Only hitch was when it asked about some Gnome config file that had apparently been changed and did I want to overwrite with the one from the update. I have no idea, the diff output didn't really help so I just went with the updated file. Looked like it was just resetting some default apps.

After that it says my system is up to date (no reboot, much better than Windows) but there are two updates marked as level 5 red security updates... So not up to date? For some reason I have to manually select them, because why wouldn't I want level 5 red security updates..

I seem to be getting asked for my password a lot. Isn't once when I open the update app enough? Reminds me of the bad old days of Windows Vista with UAC prompts every 5 seconds for fairly common tasks.

The font rendering in the little "details" terminal window is crap. Linux has historically had bad font rendering... But most of it looks good. The high DPI support is a bit limited (only 1x or 2x scaling, nothing in-between) but it does at least seem to work reliably in my limited testing. No support for monitors with different scaling settings though (e.g. you have a laptop with 4k display and plug in a 2k external monitor), and lots of stuff seems to use bitmap graphics that look bad zoomed in.

Installed open-vm-tools, not sure if it actually did anything. Clipboard sharing doesn't seem to work.

Trying to get Japanese input to work is a real pain. I installed it as an input language, but it seems that I need to manually start Ibus. Found some instructions but they were out of date. The Ubuntu wiki says load it and press CTRL+space to activate, but it doesn't work. Tried changing it to CTRL+space in the prefs, didn't work. The IME switching key and the kana/roma switching keys don't work. Found a forum post that detailed how to make the daemon auto-start and suggested a restart may be required to make it work. Still did not work.

Gave up with the IME for now, but I need to get it working.

The mouse wheel is very slow. Should be easy to fix... But apparently it needs some hacking around with the command line. Can't be bothered right now... I mean, it's a basic preference. Pick this up later.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Why I'm boycotting Earth Day 7

Earth Day - the day we're supposed to show our concern for the environment by turning off our lights for one hour between 8:30 and 9:30 pm - is just greenwashing.

It's still below freezing here, and I doubt than any of the people who will be turning out their lights will be pulling their main circuit breaker to also turn of their heat, fridge, etc. But if everyone did, it would actually have a negative impact on the environment, as everyone turning the heat back on at 9:30 will create a spike in demand - a spike that will have to be met via peak electrical generator units, which are less efficient.

And everyone driving to some place to hold a candle-light vigil? Come off it - unless you walked or biked you probably used more energy than if you sat at home with all your lights on at once.

The sun sets here today at 7:13 pm. I'm not going to be bumbling around in the dark for an hour like some poseurs. I'm greener than anyone I know. I walk everywhere I can - last Wednesday it was 13 km to go to the dentist and back the day after the 16" snowstorm. Next week it will be 19 km round-trip to the doctor's. I use public transit when I have to. I recycle. But my lights are going to be on tonight. I don't need to fake being green so I can feel like I'm doing something positive.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Interesting ... openSUSE in a VM to the rescue! 6

The last few years, I've been able to read again, but NOT program. Sitting in front of the computer trying to write code, I would just draw a blank. This was the second time - the first being after the whole flesh-eating disease thing a couple of decades ago.

Finally got off the antidepressants a couple of months ago (psychiatrist still wants me on them because I still show signs of anxiety and depression, but ...). This laptop is stuck with Windows 8.1, and there was no way I could get into coding - until I loaded openSUSE into a VM this weekend, on a hunch. I think I'm going to be okay (well, except for 20/300 vision in one eye, and 20/50 in the other, both because of cataracts* - but at least the retinal bleeding has pretty much stopped - no major hemorrhages in 8 months, though I now need cataract surgery and to see a glaucoma specialist).

Things I discovered over the last few years:

1. IDEs have gotten WAY TOO COUNTERPRODUCTIVE. The worst example is android studio. What a piece of shit. 1.6 gigs, downloaded an example program, wouldn't compile, clicked on "install missing libraries", over and over and over, rebooted, no diff. Reinstalled, no diff.

Eclipse isn't any better.

2. The old, simple ways worked, and if it ain't broke, why fix it? gedit/vim, make, and a few perl and bash scripts for versioning, etc. are all I need for c/c++ and java. At least when something doesn't work, I can find why quickly.

3. Which brings up a beef (well, another one) about Android. Material design is counter-intuitive. Horizontal on-off switches??? At least a checkbox, you can tell at a glance whether it's on or off. With a horizontal toggle, is left on or is right on? Takes up more space and is less intuitive. Yet another example of change for change's sake that ends up screwing up simple, already solved problems. We keep "solving" already-solved problems, and I suspect it's pushed by people trying to justify their jobs. Like usual.

4. Ageism. It's been real the last few jobs, and there's no way it's gotten better since I stopped working. Of course, the demand for c/c++/java programmers isn't that great here any more, and the demand for 60-year-old coders is probably zero. I could get away with chopping 10-15 years off my age (most people I've met are kind of shocked I'm that old - "you certainly don't look it!") - and there is NOTHING a potential employer can do if you lie about your age. Age is not pertinent to doing a job, and using that as a reason if/when they find out pretty much proves age discrimination, but what the hell - I'm not going to be looking for a regular job anyway, right? I remember the crappy working conditions - I'd rather work part time for minimum wage elsewhere than go back to working for schmucks. Or as one softie put it - "went lettuce picking."

5. That last point bears repeating on its own : I remember the crappy working conditions. It's just not worth it. Why waste your life explaining why $IDEA is neither great, new, earth-shaking, innovative, or worth pursuing. Or telling them to f*ck off about using Rails, Groovy, $LATEST_FAD_LIBRARY_FRAMEWORK.

6. LINUX TO THE RESCUE (again).

The importance of being able to program again is mostly to restore my self-assurance that the last few years haven't caused any real damage, not to go back into coding.

Should be interesting ... same as the whole cataract surgery thing (not a big deal). I'll probably go the independent, semi-retired route. Spend more time with the little dog, neighbors, etc., and less time trying to justify my existence to the world :-)

* You probably can't blast lasers through the lens onto the retina 4-5000 times per eye without doing some damage to the lens as well. Oh well, (imitate voice-over from "$6 million man" - we have the technology) it sure isn't going to be anywhere near as bad as the vitrectromy.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Like Owen Wilson in Armageddon 7

So the Fuckhead Of The United States is having literally the worst first month of a presidential term and his big idea is a 2020 campaign rally in fucking Florida this weekend?

Oughtta just nuke the whole country, it's the only way to be sure at this point. Fucking Yanks.

Democrats

Journal Journal: Democrat 'opposition', feeble as it ever was 1

'Feisty Liberal' Elizabeth Warren decides to support Ben Carson for HUD secretary saying she *lamented Carson's "inexperience in the field," but said she would not stand in the way of his confirmation*. You go girl! Show 'em what you're made of! I guess we're not going to hear any more about banking corruption from her either. In the end was all just half-assed whining during the campaign season. As always, don't bite the hand that feeds...

User Journal

Journal Journal: And the gay community fucks over straight transsexuals yet again. 2

For the longest time, the gay community has encouraged confusion between cross-dressers and transsexuals - even many of them say that transsexual women are just gay men in dresses.

That's bad enough - but so many in the "transgender community", including LGB transsexuals, have bought into a similar line - that straight transsexual women were all just repressed gay men.

Sounds reasonable if you buy into the whole "sexual orientation is always fixed." Unfortunately, the animal kingdom puts the lie to that in a big way - there are many animals that change sex (which is even more extreme) and then go on to procreate and produce young in their new sex.

Were the ones who used to be female really all just suppressed males, and vice versa? Any reasonable person would laugh at that. The animals changed both sex and sexual orientation.

But closeted gay psychiatrists (see Ray Blanchard, with his classification of straight transsexuals as "homosexual autogynephiles", and J. Michael Bailey, who wrote a book based on "research" claiming to show that transsexual women were, again, gay men, and went on to "prove" it by interviewing, and having sex with, gay transvestites) just loved to get paid spouting bullshit that furthered their personal agendas. After all, false news makes money, always has, always will.

The LGBT community vigorously denies that transsexuals can be straight in one sex, transition, and be straight in their new sex. It threatens their narrative that sexual orientation is immutable, while failing to note that not all transsexuals are gay in the first place (50% of transsexual women are straight, 1/3 bi, and 1/6 lesbian).

It also is a total denial of reality in the prison systems - straight people engage in gay and lesbian sex all the time, without any previous indicator that they might have been repressing their "true sexual orientation."

It's gotten to the point that straight transsexuals will not challenge the "suppressed gay male" story because they know they will be trashed as homophobes. All this while acknowledging that there are differences between the brains of transsexuals and non-transsexuals - they apply the same standards to both transsexuals and non-transsexuals who change sexual orientation - it MUST have been because you were really gay. How ghey is that?

The easiest way to tell if someone is a repressed gay guy is to hit on them. The really repressed ones will react violently. This has been proven in court often enough that we had to outlaw the "gay panic defense" for men accused of killing drag queens and transsexual women. So it's reasonable to assume that any transsexual woman who, prior to transition, didn't react negatively while living as a straight man, probably wasn't a repressed gay cross-dresser just dying to put on a dress.

They are doing the same to transsexuals who were straight both prior and post transition as the religious right did to all transsexuals - "you're really just gay men in drag." Bunch of fucktards with no sense of self-awareness.

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: How long until President Pence? 43

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.

User Journal

Journal Journal: a.fsdn.com sucks! 2

Why does Slashdot use a separate domain for styling its pages? It's stupid. Nothing loads until it does. I blocked it and Slashdot loads almost instantly. C'mon people, don't be a dick, use a single domain for the entire page!

Oh, and by the way, I had to block cloudfront.com(net?) and janrain.com also.

The web is getting so dumb...

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.

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