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Another Quote of the Day
Oct 26th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

After awl, their are spelling miss steaks that the che­quer can knot ketch.

The Prag­mat­ic Pro­gram­mer

Standards slipping
Oct 26th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

From the BBC News RSS feed:

A man from Kent is found guilty of traf­fick­ing three teenage girls from Nige­ria into main­land Europe using African ‘juju’ witch­craft.

I can’t tell from this sum­ma­ry whether some­one did a real­ly poor job of sum­ma­riz­ing the case and it was real­ly some­thing entire­ly dif­fer­ent from what this sen­tence describes, or if it’s actu­al­ly as appalling a mis­car­riage of jus­tice as that sen­tence makes it appear to be. The link in the feed is bro­ken, so I can’t find any more details.

If this real­ly is what it sounds like, well, the British used to have a much bet­ter per­spec­tive on witch­es.

Monopolies can do strange things
Oct 26th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

When you’re pro­tect­ed by a government-granted monopoly you can get away with doing some real­ly strange things. Case in point: when I called Time Warn­er Cable to arrange for my cable ser­vice to be moved, they start­ed out being very help­ful and say­ing that would be easy. Then when I told them the new address was in Austin, sud­den­ly they said they couldn’t trans­fer ser­vice out­side of Cal­i­for­nia. I had to dis­con­nect my ser­vice, then call up the num­ber for Time Warn­er in Tex­as (which the Cal­i­for­nia rep­re­sen­ta­tive didn’t know) and set up “new” ser­vice there–even though I’m just get­ting the exact same cable modem ser­vice I already have.

For added strange­ness, I have to take the equip­ment in my apart­ment (a cable modem and cable TV box) to their near­est store or I’ll be charged “equip­ment fees.” Strange, they seemed per­fect­ly will­ing to car­ry those box­es out to my apart­ment when I was set­ting the ser­vice up.

Quote of the Day
Oct 26th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Ample ink is spilled over debat­ing whether the US media is biased in favor of Repub­li­cans or Democ­rats. It is nei­ther. The over­whelm­ing, dri­ving bias of the US media is sub­servience to pow­er, who­ev­er hap­pens to be wield­ing it.

Glenn Green­wald

Some perspective on the election
Oct 22nd, 2012 by Ken Hagler

The Wrong Side Absolute­ly Must Not Win [reason.com]

It seems that the fans are get­ting worked up again about whether their team will win the Big Game. This arti­cle from the Rea­son Mag­a­zine web­site does a good job of putting their silli­ness in per­spec­tive.

Backups are important
Oct 22nd, 2012 by Ken Hagler

→ Out­lawed by Ama­zon DRM.

Mar­t­in Bekkelund on his friend’s appar­ent ban from Ama­zon for no rea­son:

Did she vio­late any terms? Ama­zon will not tell. Per­haps by acci­dent? Ama­zon does not care. The con­clu­sion so far is clear: Ama­zon closed her account, wiped her Kindle and refus­es to tell her why. End of dis­cus­sion.

The lan­guage in Amazon’s respons­es is painful­ly corporate-douchey. It’s even worse than Twitter’s recent blog posts.

I’m guess­ing Ama­zon won’t refund the full pur­chase price of all of the Kindle books she “bought” that Ama­zon now has stolen back from her, or the Kindle itself that she’s no longer allowed to use.

[Marco.org]

This is why it’s a very good idea to remove the DRM from every ebook you buy (not Kindle books, any ebook from any source) and back it up. Many com­ments on the orig­i­nal post point­ed this out as well, and men­tioned Cal­i­bre, which is what I use for keep­ing track of my own ebook library.

Firewall strangeness
Oct 17th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

My Mac Pro’s fire­wall sud­den­ly start­ed block­ing ssh con­nec­tions for no appar­ent rea­son. I even­tu­al­ly fig­ured out that I had to set sshd-keygen-wrapper to “Allow incom­ing con­nec­tions” before it would start work­ing again. I’m guess­ing a recent sys­tem update suf­fered from overzeal­ous secu­ri­ty.

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