Under the weather...

We've been under the weather, no surprise. It seems like everyone has been.

There is something going around.

It is highly contagious. Amazingly contagious.
It has a short duration, spiking in a day with lesser relapses.
The major symptoms are sneezing, phlem, and fever the first day,
phelm and mild fever the second day,
and an amazing need to take a long nap.

Cheap deal shopping...

Random shopping trivia:

SlickDeals - http://www.slickdeals.net, a daily list of things people found cheap.  My recent purchases are both from Amazon.
    Tote Bag + Long metal level + utility knife for $15 from Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/guides/guide-display/-/2GX2IJ0EZTN0S
    2 cheap Bill Blas button down shirts, $7 from Amazon.  http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0009OTGE8

An of course, http://www.woot.com, the junk of the day.  Sometimes a good deal.


Today's Random Reading...

I liked these two articles:

"Six Dumbest Ideas In Computer Security", by Marcus Ranum.

Looks at the persistent bad ideas in computer security in a quick, light-hearted view.  The six ideas, for those who read nothing but LJ, follow:
  1. Default Permit - defaulting to permit, e.g., in firewalls, email attachments, etc.
  2. Enumerating Badness - trying to keep track of all the different bad traffic types.
  3. Penetrate and Patch - trying to harden systems by breaking into them and then patching the holes found.
  4. Hacking is Cool - a social problem; trumpeting "white hat" hackers.
  5. Educating Users - like #3, it would have worked by now if it works
  6. Action is better than inaction - praise for the 'wait a couple years' approach to new technology.
Another old article this referenced and reminded me of this classic:

"Personal Observations on the reliabilty of the Shuttle", by Richard Feynman

This is basically a smack at NASA for making up reliability numbers.  Documents using the adage of "it didn't blow up last time" to degrade safety concerns.  Truly shoddy engineering all around.  It does praise the avionics software.

So what have you read recently?

Problems with Whois.Net

Just as a warning to all those who might use WhoIs.Net as a way to search for domain names.


Twice in the past week I have looked through possible domain names and found them 'open' in their search by name fragment. In both cases, they had been registered long before. It appears that it will randomly miss items for either technical or business reasons.

In other domain news, the vast bulk of domains are registered by large squatters. Way to go ICANN. Bleh.

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It's looking like a full week.

Monday: Play with MediaWiki, WordPress, and set up shell for a new account. Dinner with a friend at Sweet Tomatoes.

Tuesday: Took little A to Music Together class (and admire the franchise). Charity auction and friend's birthday dinner tonight.

Wednesday: Take little A and two neices for most of the day and evening. Brains will leak from ears.

Thursday: Finish PACT business plan. Dinner with extended family.

Friday: Clean up house paperwork. Dinner is J's company holiday party.

Saturday: Go to Linux InstallFest at Google to get Ubutnu running on the laptop. Friend's BDay party #2 that evening.

Sunday: Holiday cookie cooking party at our house. Sunday evening might even be open.

Coffee tonight...

Hello All,

I'll be at coffee tonight at 7:30 at Coffee Society (Stevens Creek in Cupertino, Across from DeAnza College). Movie to follow.

Come, drink coffee.

OK, I'm totally clueless...

Well, I admit to being clueless. I need to set up three domains in the near future.

What's the current model people use and recommend?
- put up a home Linux box on a DSL line.
Static IP still required? Patch daily? Favorite Distro?
- FriCoLo. Find a friend's closet. Use their firewall, IP, and your own box. SSH in.
Any friends volunteering? Distro? Any physical access requirements?
- Free/cheap hosting site that has point and click interface. Upload scripts after debugging locally.
- something else.

I want three sites. All are low to very low volume, have minimal (95% uptime) reliability requirements, and low technical requirements. The objective is to get 80% of what I want with 20% of the effort.

TrueGift.Com - Currently paying $25/month (yes, the rate from years ago). MySql + Perl + SSH/shell + email forwardubg services.
Personal Domain - Probably a MediaWiki, some quick pages, RSS feed, custom programs in Perl, JSP.
Auto charity domain - Crafted pages, collaborative updates, Wiki, RSS.

So, what's the current method? What do you use? What would you use if you were setting up now?

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I went to BrainJams on Saturday. I particularly like the hour or so of 2 minute one-on-one conversations with people. SpeedGeeking rocks.

I took notes using the Mindjet MindManager. The notes will eventually be on the BrainJam site, but are behind the cut for your edification.

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