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Comment Another high school story... (Score 1) 142

N-butyric acid is about the nastiest stuff I've ever smelled, and it's amazing how fast that stench can travel from one end of a large room to another. We had this stoner that started hanging around the chemistry lab a lot. One day I took him to the back room with a conspiratory air, and convinced him that this stuff was "soooo rad", and would "make you higher than a kite". I pumped him up enough that when I uncapped it he sniffed deeply without testing it first. He cried out, coughed, and vomited. Fortunately he was feeling too bad to catch me and do what he wanted, as I escaped back into the safety of the main room, laughing my head off. It didn't take long for the story to get around.

Comment Re:Seriously?? (Score 1) 154

That's a good point -- while rare for me personally, I have on occasion included minimal X libraries for particular apps before while not hosting a full-time console environment. I've run into some apps that offer GUI admin from a remote machine -- but only if you install a "big boy" web server w/ extra modules that starts to make the X installation look small and simple.

Comment Re:Seriously?? (Score 1) 154

Aside from all the jokes about not using vi, etc. I seriously marvel at the idea of a "really stripped-down server" including an X system. Though I fairly regularly use ssh -X on other workstations, I haven't included X at all on a single server (LTSP servers aside) in the last 15 years. I'm curious what kinds of tools server admins are requiring an X environment on the server for.

Comment Short vs. Long (Score 1) 208

> where does the seven come in?
1000^7 thousands.

1000^7 thousands = septillion
1000^6 thousands = sextillion
1000^5 thousands = quintillion
1000^4 thousands = quadrillion
1000^3 thousands = trillion
1000^2 thousands = billion
1000^1 thousands = million
1000^0 thousands = thousand

One may argue over whether the short or long system (1000x & offset by 1) makes more sense, but they both have a logical relation.

Comment Re:C=128 (Score 2) 167

There was virtually no CPM software adapted to the C=128

I wasn't aware that it needed to be adapted. When I think of CP/M software I don't think of fancy programs highly customized for specific hardware -- if it had a keyboard and at least an 80x24 screen, it was happy! Being able to run CP/M software was one of the main reasons I got a C128, and I did so for several years with no more adaptation than setting up book scripts on the floppy to automatically load everything the way I wanted.

Comment Don't forget self-employment tax! (Score 1) 128

For many, self-employment tax is another really good reason to try to steady things and avoid "bouncing revenue", if there's the chance that you could end up taking a loss the next year. Big profit one year? Pay big tax! Loss next year? Sorry, bud, no refund!

I confess to getting first-hand experience with this, as I'm accounting on an accrual basis, and just paid taxes for a rather large amount of work done that may eventually have to be written off as bad debt, or at the least is going to cost me to collect, since the guys behind the business have disappeared, and I'll likely go into the red next year. Paying >15% tax on money I haven't actually got...ouch!

Comment dialup != high latency (Score 4, Informative) 558

Although
      High latency = slow
and
      Dialup = slow
I wouldn't have thought of "dialup" to describe a high-latency connection. (Gee, by eliminating your local router, it drops a hop, and should be faster, right?)

Years ago, the latency from my DSL provider to some locations was so bad (>500ms ping times) that I actually dialed another ISP on when I was using an especially "chatty" protocol, and enjoyed better overall performance, even though the max theoretical throughput was only 1/20th what the DSL connection offered..

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