The Dysmey Blog
The personal weblog of Andy West.
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11/23/08
Mid-November 2008
Filed under: General, Work
Posted by: Andy @ 3:06 am

The past couple of weeks have gotten more and more frosty. There was even snow on the ground — bearly — for a couple of days. I had to drive slowly on the rural roads due to the ice. It is going to be a habit, as I drive in places with too little funds for snow removal.

I can see my juice bill fly into the clear crisp sky this winter. But at least my heating bill will not be as bad as my folks or sisters, who heat with gas.

I lend my sister the editor an issue of Consumer Reports with ratings on space heaters. Her furnace died the death at the most inopportune time, so she is looking for a stop-gap measure to keep at least the inner rooms of the house warm. Madre suggested she get a wall furnace — and had to hammer into her head that she was not talking about a space heater.

My cat Isis is in recovery from her sprained back as well as being on a diet to get her to shed that weight. The vet had worried about Isis jumping during the week or so after the visit. But Isis has been doing almost no jumping. Indeed she has been spending almost all her time in the dark space underneath the base step of the stairs. I have had to take her food dish to the step to get her to eat dinner because the dinner has her anti-inflammatory medicine in it. It is kind of worrying, but she does move about every so often, so I am not too worried.

XMas is coming, and the desperate stores are starting their XMas sales early due to the recession. (Actually the start of the XMas sales season had been creeping earlier and earlier in the past few years.) Anyway, as my last plastic XMas tree bit the dust when its lights burned out, I bought a new one. It is a meter tall, has white lights, and runs off the mains instead of batteries. It sits on the table in front of a living room window. It looks okay, but could use some ornaments and something on top.

I tried Ubuntu on the Janovac. It is the easiest thing to install. The problem is installing stuff like Apache and PHP on top. The root account is almost inaccessible, making it hard to install software on top. Evidently Ubuntu is set up with the maximum amount of distrust on the part of the user. It looks like I will go back to Fedoara.

Work presents two problems. One is getting the university repository registered with the Open Archives Initiative (OAI). Of OAI’s six protocols, the repository fails on one because the Web server chokes on it. Apart from certain info not making it to the Web server, I can’t figure out why.

The other deals with Macs using a Windows network feature called Active Directory (AD). AD recycles its internal passwords periodically; and when it does the Macs become unbound to AD, forcing me to rebind them by hand. The university’s computing service found me a script that can be used to make a Mac rebind to AD at every login. If it works, it saves me work.

When someone is trying to fix something for you, you only make the repair take longer, and make the worker angry, if you annoy or pester them with questions they cannot answer. And when they don’t answer, don’t assume that they cannot hear you. It all works out in the end if you just leave the worker alone.

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