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Archive September 2001
Friday 28 September 2001
The PSU I got, incidentally, was a 300W thing made by Antec. It's nice and quiet, and has lots of connectors, so my current comment on Antec, if you happen to be wanting a PSU, is that I recommend them. I'm sure nobody is actually interested at all - in reality, this is just a note-to-self for when the PSU of another machine dies a death. [08:38] [1 comment]

Thursday 27 September 2001
Another step in the ironically entitled Operation Enduring Freedom - Hackers face life imprisonment under 'Anti-Terrorism' Act. Oh yes, "Justice Department proposal classifies most computer crimes as acts of terrorism". And they do it retroactively, for any computer crimes committed in the last five years, too. As if by magic, ping, you're a terrorist. Congratulations! Also, teachers of computing courses, parents, and people who answer questions on mailing lists, will be magically rendered terrorists the instant their student, child, or helpee commits a crime. [23:01] [1 comment] The lady points at The Onion's God Clarifies 'Don't Kill' Rule article, which was apparently already Angryblogged, but I didn't notice. [22:52] [1 comment]
I ordered a new PSU for that machine which was knackered by a storm a while back, yesterday, from insight.com, at 1:30pm, standard UPS-ground shipping. It arrived today, long ago enough that it's now fitted to the machine, working, and being left on to see whether the PSU was, in fact, the item at fault. [22:50] [1 comment] A splendid site of ye olde musics from games made for dead and dying computers; chiptune.com. Unfortunately, it appears to be lacking the Turrican 2 end-credits music that I was looking for. As does everywhere else. Pfh. [20:57] [1 comment]

Wednesday 26 September 2001
Hoorah, the Debian program finished, in a manner of speaking. Which is to say, it got to 99% complete, and then exited with an error. Twice. Everyone should use Slackware, if they must use Lunix. [23:30] [1 comment] My wife's grandmother is showing signs of dying. No sympathy, please, it's not like a plane is crashing into her or anything, so it doesn't matter. It's an old-age deal. Apparently she shares a sense of humour with me, a quote-from-the-respirator being "Why all the long faces? It's not like I'm going to die or anything, ha ha ha!" [09:54] [1 comment]
There was a tornado near here the other day, which has rendered about 700 students homeless, and smooshed two people in an accidentally-flying car. My sympathy to them and their relatives, for having lost people in irrelevant non-terrorist action. [09:53] [1 comment]
Speaking of terrorist action, apparently the anime movie Operation Infinite Justice has been turned into a condom commercial entitled Operation Enduring Freedom. As the PLIF people say: "Who's naming these things, some four-star general's ten-year-old son?" [09:53] [2 comments] My apologies for the lack of recent entries. I blame it on my wife insisting that I download Debian, which is performed through some stupid pseudo-image program instead of just using a normal ISO file like any other distribution, which has meant my connection has been pathetically slow for over 24 hours, which disinclines me to type over telnet. [09:52] [3 comments]

Sunday 23 September 2001
Incidentally, in an unusual twist, my sympathies to everyone who has lost loved ones to anything other than terrorist action. If I were in that position it would make me really angry to see the entire world sympathising with people who've lost people in the plane crashes, and, by omission, telling me that nobody gives a damn about the people I've lost. So, sympathy from me. It's worth more than all the pathetic wheedling sympathies-under-obligation that the terrorist victims have been getting, too. Bonus. [23:50] [1 comment]
A rather well considered and serious view of Operation Infinite Justice, taken from DJLavey's journal, which was taken from Exploited UK, which was taken from someone dutchbint.org was insulting in comments. [23:39] [1 comment] Hooray, remote controlled cockroaches! Good for "crawling through earthquake rubble to search for victims", "espionage surveillance" and, of course, practical jokes. (via Tyrethali) [20:34] [1 comment]

Saturday 22 September 2001
My Pirate Name is apparently Black James Rackham. (via Meander) [20:49] [1 comment]
The whole terrorist incident is actually a hoax. No information is allowed to leave New York any more, from fear of the hoax being revealed before it's time. (Tyrethali) [00:28] [1 comment] Breaking news: The World Trade Center towers were actually made of paper. The engineers were frankly amazed that they hadn't collapsed in a strong breeze, let alone high-velocity plane impacts. (Nik) [00:26] [1 comment] In speech classes, the common training phrase is now "The rain in Spain sits mainly in the drain.", to avoid offending the people who were squished. [00:23] [1 comment]
The movie Police Academy and some of its sequels have been redubbed with the tall black man renamed to TallBlackMan, to avoid offending those who were exploded in the tragedy ten days ago. [00:21] [1 comment] Towels and Trowels have been respectively renamed DryCloths and MiniShovels, due to the similarity between the words and Tower, and out of respect to the WTC terrorism incident. [00:19] [1 comment] The Ryder-Waite Tarot Deck is now being manufactured without The Tower, out of respect to the WTC terrorism incident. [00:10] [1 comment]

Friday 21 September 2001
Everyone's favourite truth-knower, the falsely-named Jennifer Juggs continues the exciting email saga that has been keeping me entertained for the last few days. Now brought to light for the enjoyment of all. [02:10] [2 comments]

Thursday 20 September 2001
Oh yes, I also magically didn't realise that the aforementioned article spoke in terms like "THOSE IMAGES WERE SHOT BACK IN 1991!!!", as my brain automatically translates such things into terms more like "A teacher of mine, here in Brazil, said (s)he has videotapes recorded in 1991, with the very same images." My apologies to those of you who lack such reason-filters.
Notable weirdness - the original quote from the person referred to the teacher as 'he', then the second-hand recanting refers to the teacher as 'she'. Still, the almightly Snopes says the recanting is genuine, so it must be. [19:06] [1 comment]
Incidentally, when I linked to the 'stock footage' article, it wasn't in any way an attempt to persuade people that the dancing Palestinians were stock footage. I think better of my readers than that (Should I?). I did intend to draw attention to the possibility. More than that, I intended to point out that, whether stock footage or not, the footage was unnecessary hatemongering. 200 happy Palestians on tape, therefore all Palestinians think terrorism is great. After all, if any objected, they would be out in the streets making it known. Certainly.
I don't intend to explain all my blog entries and their motivations in detail like this. Bear in mind, in future, that blog entries may have more between the lines than in the text. Thank you. (How would Americans like it if everyone else judged them by footage of a couple of hundred fat greasy whiny anti-abortion protestors? Oh, they do. Touché.) [18:52] [1 comment]
A car commercial asks "What good is beauty if it's only skin deep?". Very simple. It looks good. I ask "What good is a sense of humour when only one in ten people can comprehend it?". Just like the car commercial, I don't expect anyone to answer. In fact, I already know the answer. Shut up. [02:27] [1 comment]

Wednesday 19 September 2001
Nik muttered something about abovetopsecret.com. I thought it was all ridiculous nonsense or, at best, misdirection, but then I asked the aforementioned Snopes about Majestic 12 or Majority 12, and, to my surprise, it didn't debunk it. If Snopes doesn't say it's a lie, it must be true. Run for the hills! [22:24] [1 comment]
I'm upgrading to Internet Exploder 6. Always an unnerving thing to be doing. Half of the license agreement is in Spanish, too - for all I know, that bit was all about giving millions of Things to Microsoft. Tsk. [21:28] [1 comment] I just spotted in the local TV guide, "Aging Successfully with Dr. David". I had no idea that people were having difficulty aging. Perhaps they should trade their "aging unsuccessfully" tips for Dr David's "aging successfully" tips. I think their market is wider. [21:22] [1 comment]
Yay, complaints and/or insults from a false-named person who's been trying to annoy me for several days. Mr Juggs proudly announces that snopes is the world's foremost source of genuine truth. Regarding the 'stock footage' entry, I was given this link. JJ also gives me, regarding the radio non-play list of yesterday, this link. JJ concludes "You should visit Snopes before you include these silly hoaxes, rumors, or whatever in your blog.". Lucky me, I visited Snopes long ago, so I'm covered. [18:27] [1 comment]

Tuesday 18 September 2001
A radio station is avoiding playing songs which may offend people who've been exploded by aircraft impact. The list of 'offensive' songs is here. I immediately started playing some of the less obviously offensive songs, such as System of a Down's Chop Suey. [21:02] [1 comment] Hoorah, more gibbery nonsense in my error logs, thanks to stupid IIS vulnerabilities. I've now stopped the error-logging (though the access-logging goes on) by creating a 'scripts' directory for the thing to attempt to access, with a .htaccess file in it containing "RedirectPermanent / http://www.microsoft.com/", and then symlinking each of msadc MSADC _mem_bin _vti_bin c and d to scripts. No more error-logging. Of course, this is only good if you don't use IIS. [20:57] [1 comment]
I'm finally back to working on Prelude again, as m'lady found one of her friends is a 3D Artist, which was one of the missing factors reducing my enthusiasm. Not only that, but he's an enthusiastic 3D artist, having started sending me things already. Best get myself coding. Oh, also Nik has expressed an interest in being extra-coder, which was also something I wanted. Now I have no excuse. [01:49] [1 comment]

Monday 17 September 2001
Hoorah for slug powered robots, via Tyrethali. [21:54] [1 comment]
The series of TV commercials "Parents - The Anti-Drug" is really bloody annoying. Apparently, the way to prevent your kids becoming drug addicts (despite that the kids in the ad who are thanking their parents for invading their privacy all look like they are drug addicts) is to, as I implied in the brackets, invade their privacy. Also, you should catch them when they sneak out and know when they lie. However, you must not in any way help them to be responsible for their own life. Yup, from my own childhood, the only reason I didn't inject my own weight in crack each day is because my parents caught me sneaking out. Bag o' shite. [00:02] [1 comment]

Sunday 16 September 2001
Cycling in America is sheer insanity. Drivers have generally passed a rudimentary test, when they were 15, which consists of correctly inscribing their name. They are also asked "Do you know what a cyclist is?", and apparently only pass the test if they answer 'no'. To add to the fun, police will stop you if you cycle on the sidewalk, so you have no choice but to cast yourself invisibly into the road and wish yourself luck. I have a fine solution for this situation.
The reason cyclists aren't allowed on the sidewalk is that they might injure pedestrians. Of course, nobody in their right mind will choose to cycle in the road, which leaves everyone driving, which is bad for the environment. The obvious solution is cycle-paths, but government-people aren't willing to do that. The less obvious solution is to allow cycling on the sidewalk on the condition that the cyclist is *not* wearing a helmet. At that point, hitting a pedestrian is as dangerous to the cyclist as it is to the pedestrian - a balance not conferred on the cyclist-in-the-road. As soon as it's in one's own interest not to hit people, the act of not hitting people will become far more commonplace. An alternative would be to declare open season on any driver who triggers a cyclist's computerised proximity alarm. The instant a driver goes within half a metre of a bicycle, they are considered renegades and outlaws - all cyclists may henceforth shoot the car with whatever weapons they might have to hand, and any other drivers with bumper mounted weaponry can also make use of them. [01:25] [1 comment]
An interesting article nabbed from The View From Here. Funny, when I was first told of the footage of dancing Palestinians, my immediate thought was that it was probably stock footage. When someone else suggests it's stock footage and that it's a big conspiracy, I think "It was probably just someone handing over the footage and neglecting to mention that it was from stock". My tricksy Devil's Advocaating at work again, making me seem especially disagreeable to all. Splend. [01:01] [1 comment]

Saturday 15 September 2001
I've started giving a little Advice to the MCiOS people. Several more to come, but I don't want to flood the board with me-content [23:24] [1 comment] I watched the movie Dogma last night, and was pleasantly surprised. The crude humour was quite a lot less crappy than I expected of it, and the non-crude humour was pleasingly perpetual and consistent. The quirky references to other films, and the unlikely cast add to the fun. Though Alanis Morissette really doesn't make a very good god. Mm. I recommend the movie to all and sundry, anyway. [23:17] [1 comment]

Thursday 13 September 2001
Apparently, all the news stations are following in the footsteps of my blog. UK tabloids have just started blaming Microsoft, the US news eventually came up with the possibility of misdirection, and hell, even the reportage of the methods used seems to be almost based on my mention (before it was reported) of baseball bats and plastic guns. In an attempt to stay ahead, I now suggest that what all four flights had in common is this - none of them had the president on them. Very suspicious. I say he's responsible. [01:36] [1 comment]

Wednesday 12 September 2001
Kevan observes, in response to my suggestion that the terrorists are probably American, that that would make Dubya's "no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts, and those who harbor them" quite funny. [22:27] [1 comment] Hoorah, another IIS worm; Code Blue. [22:26] [1 comment] I just submitted a new UpsideClone. Did I mention that my previous went up? [22:25] [1 comment]
Hoorah, possible economy collapse - a radio station recommending that people go to the bank and get all their money, while they can. Yup, that'll help. So, I expect there'll be people withdrawing their money in case of other people withdrawing their money. And then there'll be people selling US dollars on exchanges, in case of other people drawing their money. And then there'll be people selling US dollars in case of other people selling US dollars. Watch the value plummet. On the up-side, that'll make the $15000 owed on the lady's car worth nothing, and, being in the US, it'll make my few-thousand-UK-pounds suddenly incredibly valuable. Fantastic. We should buy a house quick before the dollar becomes worthless. [09:16] [1 comment]
Will I get persecuted for being foreign? After all, terrorists in movies are always English. But it's alright, I don't have white hair. Note to self: Don't dye hair white until after the INS are done with. [09:03] [1 comment] And the mockery carries through into the next day's blog... Mysterious Tom suggests a new culprit; "Bill Gates. Means, motive, etc. Flight Sim used for terrorist training. Very bad man. Case closed." [08:33] [1 comment]
Someone should have installed more pusher robots in the World Trade Center. Too late now. [07:47] [1 comment] Conspiracy-theory fodder, from a co-worker of my wife: "My cousin who works for the UN in Baghdad, Iraq, was asked along with other US officials to leave Iraq last Monday within 48 hours..." (asked by the US, not by Iraq, apparently) [07:40] [1 comment] Comedy from Tyrethali this morning, that I forgot to blog; "John Edwards special tonight." [07:27] [1 comment]
Grarh, churches being shown in relation to the explodey things, with a bunch of people praying the generic "we are mindless clones" prayer. "The lord is my shepherd, I shall not want, he maketh me to lie down in green pastures, he basheth my brains with a big hammer, and cooketh me for dinner. He fleeceth me for jumpers." [03:51] [1 comment] Inspired by Teleute; "It's a protest against the second Lord of the Rings movie." [01:55] [1 comment]
Courtesy of my wife; "Maybe it was a bet. 'Bet you $20 I can throw the entire nation into terror and paranoia!' 'No way, dude! You're on!'" [01:00] [1 comment] Courtesy of Eperdu; "I remember when all this was towers." [00:26] [1 comment]

Tuesday 11 September 2001
Courtesy of zx64; "Somebody set U.S. up the plane." [22:56] [1 comment]
"Something like this would take seven years of planning". What? Find some violent suicidal people. Take fifteen minutes at expedia.com or some similar site, and you're done. Oh, and a couple of days with a basic flight simulator, I suppose, for each of your mad suicidal violent people. Seven days, perhaps, but not seven years. I suppose it makes more sense than saying "It's dead easy to do this, but don't, please." [22:43] [1 comment] Shooting down the planes - how is that supposed to help? As far as I know, interceptor jets aren't yet equipped with plasma guns or other vaporisation technology. So you shoot the plane down, and then it, er, crashes into a building. On the up-side, I suppose you can make it crash into occupied houses, shops and streets, rather than into evacuated big buildings. It's much cheaper to get new people than it is to rebuild monuments, of course. [19:28] [2 comments]
Planes crashing into important buildings - film at 11. An FBI Terrorism Expert says that "Only the middle east are capable of something like this" and "It was a well-financed operation". What gives him that idea? I'd have thought a group of people with a suicide pact, and a budget of about $2000, could pull off something like this. Plane ticket, plastic replica gun, and a baseball bat for if anyone argues with the gun. Does it cost more than that to hijack a plane? Maybe another $40 for a flight simulator so you can get good enough at flying a plane to crash it into the right place. Surely not difficult - landing and take-off are the difficult thing.
There's also some discussion of the motivation; "Why would someone want to incur the wrath of the United States?". Their conclusion was "I don't know". Apparently Australian TV had a more reasonable idea - someone might want to incur the wrath of the US in order to misdirect it at someone else. Sounds like a good plan to me. "Hello, this is Pa... er... Iraq. We blew you up, ha ha ha." [19:24] [3 comments]
Crikey, three blogless days. That's the worst I've done without the server being to blame. Disgraceful. And I don't even have anything particularly cool to make up for it. I started writing the non-mnemonic version of Ravens and Snake, and am in the process of making what will hopefully be a monster chilli courtesy of dried crushed habanero peppers from Kent. [01:37] [2 comments]

Friday 7 September 2001
This server now logs stuff remotely by a custom-made mechanism, so if things *are* hax0rs, and they haven't yet got a completely invisible back-door in place, they'll not be able to cast confusion on matters next time. Hoorah. [07:31] [0 comments]

Thursday 6 September 2001
Stage 1: "Please notify this office in writing or by fax (202 30? !\<u)"
Stage 2: Ten minutes of "Press one if you'd like to go round in circles. Press two if you'd like to end this call."
Stage 3: "I understand, sir. We don't have fax numbers here. You could write."
Sure. Write. Like we did with the change of address months ago. You know, the change of address that was ignored, which is why this fiasco is happening. Or like we did with all those things we submitted when we were doing the other sort of application, that we kept getting told we hadn't submitted. Sure, I'll trust your letter-receiving abilities.
I have a better idea. I'll fax every number in the 202 30(7/2) (1/4)5(3/2/8)(6/0/8) combinations. One of them must work. And then I'll write. And then I'll come round with a letter and put it in someone's hand. And then I'll shout it from a rooftop through a megaphone into the ear of a sleeping INS worker. One of these methods must meet with success. [21:31] [0 comments]
Eperdu pointed at the rather freakish Requiem for a Dream website, which is splendidly entertaining in odd ways, and succeeds in interesting me in the movie. [07:44] [0 comments] Oh yes, and to top the day off... fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fuck. [07:15] [0 comments]
Oh, also, fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fuck. [06:21] [0 comments] Note, the previous entry doesn't apply to those who use Lynx, and probably neither to Links. Hats off to all three of you. However, Lynx sucks for my TV guide page, and doesn't save cookies for things I visit regularly. Nice, but not as nice as a million billion dollars delivered into my hand by an army of naked my-wife clones. [05:51] [0 comments]
It's vaguely gleanable from that previous entry that I no longer use Unix as a desktop OS. Because it sucks. 30Mb for a web-browser that doesn't even install without other stuff, and doesn't even support Java, or, indeed, anything, and also crashes, and also doesn't work properly even when it doesn't crash. That tips it over the edge for me. You Lunix people who say "When my browser crashes it doesn't crash my whole OS" - so fucking what? Your browser crashes. The prosecution rests. [05:43] [0 comments] Fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fucking fuck. [05:35] [0 comments]

Tuesday 4 September 2001
Now that you all have access to the TV-Guide for my area, I expect you to inform me whenever there's anything good on, of course. Ignore things in purple, they're not really on. And please note, I don't actually expect any such thing. Splendid. [22:49] [0 comments] Tsk. Konqueror's annoying inability to function properly outside of KDE caused me to delete my bookmarks, thus removing my ability to check my TV-Guide, because Konqueror won't do the forms that lead to the correct page. Never again, as the link is now here. Hoorah for Blogs as portable bookmarks. [22:48] [0 comments]

Monday 3 September 2001
Via Talen comes a thing vaguely in the vein of Hatt Baby; the new one being Ja Da. [22:57] [0 comments]

Sunday 2 September 2001
American food-adverts have a propensity to advertise using one particular technique that I like to call the "You are a fat fuck. Stop eating that lardy crap you always eat, and eat our food instead, shitball" technique. I imagine childhood training renders them susceptible to advertisements of this sort. [23:34] [0 comments] The sci-fi channel is advertising their "four-day labor-day sofathon". Not only is that unusually long for any sort of day, even a labor-day, but a sofathon is a somewhat disturbing concept. That said, I'll put $5 on my sofa, on the nose. [22:51] [0 comments]
While I'm doing such things, I'll take a moment to recommend Attrition's song A Girl Called Harmony. [03:24] [0 comments] Thanks to Juniper, Raina and Mrrowr for mentioning that my play a song links of yesterday were all explodey-like because mp3.com disallow direct links to their playlist files nowadays. My links are now fixed, because I use my own playlist files. You may still need to be registered with mp3.com before they'll work - I'm not sure if their annoying cookie-filled prohibitions extend to such realms. [03:19] [0 comments]

Saturday 1 September 2001
Also, from Those People, who no longer shall remain Anonymaus, Sonic versus Mario. [22:12] [0 comments] From the Infamous Meander, a little Flash widget of destruction; Ant City. [22:10] [0 comments] Courtesy of the Mysterious Tom, who probably got it from Slashdot, The Shakespeare Programming Language. [19:10] [0 comments]
Speaking of my MP3s, I started playing through some old ones, and came upon some that I'd like to re-recommend to everyone. Adrian Alexis has the rather excellent songs Whoever Said Tomorrow's Dead and The Calling, while Cordium Detractio caught my attention with the lovely Up The Stairs. Listen. [04:51] [0 comments] Not only that, but my FreeBSD is starting to get usable now. I have my MP3s, I have my talky things, and I have my email, and I have a browser. All I need now is a development environment. [04:40] [0 comments]
By golly, someone should have insisted that I use Enlightenment rather than KDE from the start. It starts faster, it doesn't try to force big icons down my throat, the number of stupid libraries it needs is far fewer, and it doesn't have stupid things like a 10Mb set of 'graphics' applications which basically consist of a viewer and a load of useless crap... And the viewer not even including the image-parsing stuff, at that, but rather requiring one to get all the libraries for oneself. Also, everything is far less sluggish under Enlightenment - even the KDE programs are a wee bit nippier, though they're still slug-slow. Must remember in future to pay attention to the advice of Mysterious Tom and Nik-of-the-Pies. [01:43] [0 comments]

Friday 31 August 2001
Why do internet people assume programmers all write stuff just for them, out of the goodness of their hearts? "Can you add feature X to Motepad?" is the most common question. "Yes, I can, but I'm not bloody going to, it does everything I want, and you're not offering to pay me to add the features you want, so piss off."
"I like the random surrealism generator, but it's a shame it's all done in CGI." "What do you think it should be done in?" "Javascript, so people can take it and modify it. No point reinventing the wheel." "So what do I get out of saving other people from reinventing the wheel, at the cost of reinventing it myself?" "(notable silence)".
People, I do not program for you, I program for me. If you pay me, then I will program for you. Otherwise, I am best, you must die. [22:54] [0 comments]