Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

I list today some things I've seen or learned about this past year.

Compressors with magnetic bearings exist and are proven technology.
Of the whole 'epigenetic' thing.
A lot more about building gnu software.
To be a 'cheapskate'.
Never give up not even when you start 1-9. ;-)
About Craigslist.
To partition disks with linux tools and not windows. ;-(
Arcana player world is still evolving
White folks can indeed

Sunday, October 25, 2009

It's TDTime in New York

Last year at the Civic Center when it was late in the game the ball would usually be found in the hands of Toney Douglas. It found it's way into the hoop often enough for FSU to end the year at 25-10. Along the way they had a trip to the teams first visit to the NCAA's in ten years and lost to Duke in the ACC championship tournament game. It was a remarkable achievement that won Leonard Hamilton a Coach of the Year award or three. Toney the top scorer and defender in all ACC games was 2nd in Player of the Year voting for the conference.
FSU guards discussed their plans for the coming season while returning in flight. "Make some some defense" said DeMercy and Dulkys. "Play some defense and make a few shots" from Loucks. It was Douglas' mantra. (at the 4:24 mark) Here a few clips from the Spain trip. All the guards get to feed it inside to Solomon Alabi.
At the end of the game Douglas if he had no shot would drive to the hole and draw some fouls. Usually putting the game out of reach. Sometimes sitting a player.
Hamilton runs the motion offense. It is one the reasons most NBA scouts had Toney listed as a 'tweener. He doesn't use a classical point. Rumor is Mike D'Antoni knows the point and how to teach it. Welcome Knicks fans to TDTime. It's interesting that Gallo is from Italy and that the Knicks will have training camp there next year.
Flameeyes is also from Italy though I do not know if he has even heard of Nate Robinson he would likely have heard of Gallinari.
The sum is better than the parts.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Net is magic

In a class for repairing PC's we were instructed to never "let the magic blue smoke out." It is like unto voodoo; when you consider it. Being able to communicate in what amounts to real time or to collaborate with anyone anywhere. And everyone is catching on to what the latest applet is. A word that AFAIK didn't even exist 20 years ago.

It didn't come with a warning label. However it should have. That's a warning to you the user. ;-) Maintain your PC. And remember if it crashes you have to restore the data. If it is critical you must rebuild it. And that should have been tested and shown to work. Shutdown and disconnect your computer and blow the dust out. I do it twice a year. Consider it's environment and adjust to suit. Carefully remove the front panel and remove any collected dust and also the side panel and holding the fan gently but firmly with a finger tip I blow out the heatsink with canned air.

Heat is energy and we wish to conserve the latter. Today's processors are monstrously powerful at even low wattage rates; far outpacing what was the latest and most expensive of computers even 3 years ago. When purchasing a computer common sense choices can save energy and still provide a powerful home or business computer.

An example. Tiffanj is a box built for other users here. It has a 7500 rpm 250GB SATA HDD. The motherboard is a Gigabyte MA78GM-S2HP, Athlon Dual Core 4850e and 2 GB's of DDR2-800 RAM. You could likely find those parts near a $120 today. CPU is rated to 45 watts which is minuscule for the processing power. Though today I would choose perhaps the 705e triple core with 6MB of level 3 cache. A 65 watt cpu and a board with an AMD 785G chipset like the 'Guru of 3D' reviews here. Further if you install a version of linux don't have to buy Windows 7 or any other OS. And most viruses and worms won't work on your system. ;-) How's that for magic?

Maintenance will give you a faster PC that runs cooler and lasts longer; while saving energy.

AFAIK- as far as I know
YMMV- your mileage may vary

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Astronomical Data Site

Previously I reported an awesome event in which the sunset and moonrise were opposite and simultaneous..well mostly. It is possible to download a table with a calculated set of times for your US city or with appropriate longitude and latitude the data for anywhere it seems. Coutesy of the new portal by the Naval Observatory. Thank you ladies and gentlemen.

There are directions to import your data into an Excel spreadsheet if you like. Probably quite similar for someone using OpenOffice.

If you should happen to make use of the data and find a special event to watch. Well then you'd have something to blog about too. ;) Feel free to comment.

Monday, September 14, 2009

It works!!

HAHA!! DVD's and Youtube play just fine now. Gentoo is awesome right now.

I had not yet managed to play movies in Linux till recently. Well the ATI 3200 IGP hardware talks to DRM and:

[drm] Initialized drm 1.1.0 20060810
pci 0000:01:05.0: setting latency timer to 64
[drm] Initialized radeon 1.30.0 20080528 for 0000:01:05.0 on minor 0
[drm] Setting GART location based on new memory map
[drm] Loading RS780 CP Microcode
[drm] Loading RS780 PFP Microcode
[drm] Resetting GPU
[drm] writeback test succeeded in 1 usecs
eth0: no IPv6 routers present
seahorse-agent[16993]: segfault at 0 ip 000000000043622f sp 00007fff6b9be780 error 4 in seahorse-agent[400000+52000]
UDF-fs: Partition marked readonly; forcing readonly mount
UDF-fs INFO UDF: Mounting volume 'THE_LAND_BEFORE_TIME', timestamp 2003/10/10 20:58 (1f10)
[drm] Resetting GPU
mtrr: MTRR 4 not used
[drm] Setting GART location based on new memory map
[drm] Loading RS780 CP Microcode
[drm] Loading RS780 PFP Microcode
[drm] Resetting GPU
[drm] writeback test succeeded in 1 usecs
seahorse-agent[22896]: segfault at 0 ip 000000000043622f sp 00007fffd3665cf0 error 4 in seahorse-agent[400000+52000]
ahh blast...not so quick it seems. there is a problem with this seahorse agent. (Goes off to investigate)
About not writing for 2 weeks; cut my hand at work and had a tough time. Was saving my hands for work.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

two horizons

Is it custom elsewhere? Along the beach people gathered on the edge of the sand to watch the sunset as they often did and salute the end of the day with the sea breeze and perhaps a beverage. Watching the light of the parting sun play upon the clouds as the gentle wash of the waves soothingly lapped upon the land.

This day was special though. April 22 1997. Today as the sun set the moon would rise huge and full upon the other end of the island. Note that the moon is fully above or on the horizon 3 minutes after sunset.

Estero Island is a 7 mile long sand bar in the shape of a shallow cresent. The southern end is trailing east by southeast a bit. The sun sets often in spring just over the west by northwest tip at the other end. The name estero I am to understand means oyster in Spanish. And the island is also called Ft. Myers Beach.

Here is a cut and paste of the days moonrise and sunset times.

U.S. Naval Observatory
Astronomical Applications Department

Sun and Moon Data for One Day

The following information is provided for Fort Myers Beach, Lee County, Florida (longitude W81.9, latitude N26.4):

22 April 1997 Eastern Daylight Time

Begin civil twilight 6:34 a.m.
Sunrise 6:58 a.m.
Sun transit 1:26 p.m.
Sunset 7:55 p.m.
End civil twilight 8:19 p.m.

Moonrise 7:04 p.m. on preceding day
Moon transit 1:01 a.m.
Moonset 6:55 a.m.
Moonrise 7:58 p.m.
Moonset 7:35 a.m. on following day

Full Moon on 22 April 1997 at 4:33 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.

I would be interested in predicting these events and hearing of them. The best for viewing would likely be a half moon and a setting sun. At least you could watch both without mirrors.

Anyway...we applauded that sunset. Is this a beach custom elsewhere?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

"your grandma wears combat boots"

Was an insult kids used to hurl at each other on the playground when I was young. Well maybe it was just me (shrugs). Anyone else ever hear that? I mean my granny did. She got the boots from the Army-Navy surplus store. She chewed tobacco too. And sometimes she used to use that old powder snuff.

When I asked her about the boots; she just said they were cheap and lasted a long time. Good footwear should suit what your are doing I suppose and liked to dig wigglers. That's an earthworm of a certain variety for those who don't know. Wigglers are good for fishin'. A past time I highly recommend. She was good at both too.

She knew where the biggest fattest wigglers were just by looking at a piece of ground and used a potato rake to get them. Once I helped her and my uncle clean a whole string of fish...and was proud we got it done. Then they showed me the number 3 washtub full. It was well after dark when we finally finished. We filled a chest freezer and ate fish many times over the next few months.

Granny filled my speech with a few choice phrases too. "Somebody bumped my elbow" If there was a bit too much spice. "Hunger makes the best sauce" So true. "Stuck my finger in it." Meant she added a bit of sugar (finger in because she was sweet).

Granny taught me to make biscuit too. She asked me "Why me?" when I asked her to show me how. "Your aunt makes them better doesn't she?" I replied "you taught her didn't ya?" I really think she liked that.

So what brought all this to mind? This story about an 87 year old woman who beat a snake to death. See my uncle once showed me a rattler and a button from a snake Granny killed "with one shot" he said. See Granny carried a snub-nosed nickel-plated .38 in her pocket book. Don't think she needed a permit when she first started. And she killed that snake at 81.

Maybe one day I'll show ya how to make a "hoe cake" Like Granny taught me. Hoe cake is not made with cornmeal's flour and buttermilk pretty much. The cornmeal version still exists on many tables as a quick fried bread.

Now Nanna (my other grnadma) was a different story. She was a painter of many stills of wildlife and called Miami "My-am-muh"

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Something linux works for?

We've used GCompris at times. Good babysitter ;-) and it's educational Better than a 'boob' tube anyway.. It's pretty nice and seems well behaved. Decent audio to set the mood. It plays chess, (quite well ....more on that later), has many puzzles that are thought provoking. You can learn to parachute into a boat or drive a submarine (it ain't easy). And there alot more games.

There are a lot of games written to run on linux. Happy Penguin seems to be keeping some type of list. I play mahjongg once in a blue moon. Used to love the asteroids: think that one is only in KDE though. I don't use it. Now I see another linux version here...something interesting because it allows me to run thin clients. I mean I only need one more terminal. Might be a bit heavy though. it's linux educational software called K12LTSP meant to run a server for schools.

But if ya just wanna look without installing...the GCompris site says it is included on Knoppix. What does that mean? Well it means you can download a cd....boot it instead of your Windows XP or whatever and...teach your kid how to drive a submarine.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Linux is good for some things

Having used it for over 12 years I can say it performs certain tasks well.

Some cons on using linux exist. There is no Shockwave support. As far as I know there are no plans to have any so if you need it, don't bother.

On the other hand it is a free operating system and you can purchase/scavenge cheap parts and build a very nice computer these days.

Purchasing the latest technology and operating system from M$ comes with a nice price tag. If you are at all handy with a computer options abound. Knoppix detects most hardware and will give anyone who is interested in the OS a look at a live system on their hardware.

A destop oriented version is Ubuntu. It is based on Debian which is at version 5 at the moment.
Gentoo is my choice I have run it since version one was deemed fit by drobbins. He has now forked funtoo.

At present this box serves well for running some educational software for one user and some stuff for me like git. Everyone wants the computer time here. Youtube videos are great and I can play music fine there. Haven't tried to play a movie yet but do have vlan installed. If I need to I can reboot into XP and run user accounts from there. I prefer the little one stay entertained by such things as GCompris. This is available on windows. After checking into it. The M$ version is shareware sort of...the full version is free on linux OS Microsoft users are used to paying so it shouldn't be a bad thing for them to make a contribution by helping us opensource advocates.

As long as movie disks will play and youtube...I can start ssh and login from the other box and do things like git and friends. Or play with ruby and any other webapps I wish. Life is good. Except there are 3 users and only two pc's. (starts looking thru the spare parts).


Installed the elogv app...nice little tool if all you want to know about as far as 'system' messages is what emerge says. Me I like all messages to go to the right place and portage's elog facility is a nice little app. It doesn't however do some of the things I'd like to work on a system. Messages from sensors debug etc should all have thier own logs and whomever should be notified should get as helpful a mail as possible...yes I said's a loopback from the system logs so we use it to give feedback to the user...nuff said.

Now root@localdomain doesn't get any mail for gentoo's default install from existing documentation and I don't see any docs on how to make it work. But somebody should be set to receive system messages at least thru looback.

Slackware did this much out of the box with a zipslack install 15 yearsa ago

this is soothes me at times. I like it

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Initial blog

Need a place to keep some notes anyone can refer to. This be it I guess. Likely that is the way such things as blogs came to be. Later many of the links here will be links on a side bar. This is just a quicky for now.
Flameeyes is a developer for Gentoo and the author of Autotools Mythbuster.

Gilles Dartiguelongue is also a Gentoo developer. Something about his blog there is rejecting my comments though I have twice tried to submit a comment with two valid email addresses one from comcast and and one gmail Settings problem or?...I'm banging my head here.

I wanted to comment on his recent elog blog

I will check into this elog and perhaps this provides all that is needed...not sure where that command is at present. What gentoo needs IMO is a mail system install to send system mesages to an account@localhost Instead of banging your head ...bang the system messages on them. If they keep getting the mail sooner or later they will seek help or fix it if they users want a broken system don't think.

Now I know you realize that not everyone has a domain name and/or a static ip. Especially the 'home linux desktop' crowd or mob or what ever probably generates a lot of bugs. If sending mail to root@localhost from the system/emerge logs is some kind of secutity hole...then let them designate the recipient. Or disable it when they want.


I have been learning to use the gitorious. It is a software collaboration tool meant for Unix environments apparently. At least I hope it works better on linux anyway as it is far less than intuitive to set up MSysGit on a M$..I am off tomorrow and will test that theory maybe then. I got the gui to run on windows but (shrugs) it wasn't what I expected. Once I learned a few simple console commands I was more productive though.
My wife once observed that sarcasm doesn't translate well from the Net. She might well have gotten that somewhere else. It is very true...nor does tone of voice. Hence the use of emotes. They are a good thing. Helps to convey the writers tone...but it isn't perfect. I say all this because in order to be productive people need to communicate without offending one another. That isn't always possible. But I will try.

I am not real fond of M$. Though perhaps I should be. I've spent many an hour using one or the other of their operating systems to surf the Net or game or whatever since 1995. Also I've used Linux of one flavor or another since '97 or '98

I've three linux installs on the two up and running computers we have here. It's great for somethings. I have a tendency to break mine. Well at least the Ubuntu ones. Gentoo so far has been fine. Or at least if I really wanted to I can make it work again.
LOL not the Ubuntu one. broke my x support and now can't get it to stop at console mode. I wrote a new /etc/X11/xorg.conf to the appropriate partition but still that didn't fix it yet..if I REALLY wanted to I'm sure I could fix it. I'm just preoccupied for now.

One Gentoo install works fine and is up-to-date. One is a year old I think.Haven't booted it in a while.

Blogs shouldn't be real long don't think so that's enough for one.