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03/01/09
The Dawn of a Pivotal Month
Filed under: General, Work
Posted by: Andy @ 12:19 am

pivotal?

I anticipate that this coming month will be very busy. And it is not just the library meetings and the doctor’s appointment and the pledge drive for Indiana Public Radio. Those I expect. It is a lot of indeterminate stuff that I have to plan for but which I do not know the outcome that makes for a month that one could call interesting.

my cat

My cat Isis does not like to take her anti-inflammatory medication. It tastes evil (to a cat). It makes her drool as she takes it, so that I have to bring a paper towel or two to wipe up the oratory. And it is hard to keep her from squirming while giving her the stuff. But Isis gets over drinking the stuff quickly, and is her normal self for the rest of the day.

But now the prescribed regiment of pinkish goo is finished. When the twenty-one days from her last hospital visit expires on the second of March, I must make an appointment to take Isis back down the hospital to see if more of the goo has brought relief to that third middle vertebra that has been causing her so much trouble. And I do not know what will happen.

my car

My Ford Aspire is twelve years old now. And the past year for it has not been very good. If the following sounds like an obit, it is because it may well be time to give up on the car.

Evidently all that shifting between drive and second gears has worn out something in the transmission. The transmission began to slip a couple of days ago: After a stop or a park, the transmission would delay for a second or two before engaging. That makes it dangerous to be on a hill when you have to stop. I took the car to the local transmission shop, where I got the rebuilt transmission just after I bought my car. I was took it would cost nine hundred dollars to fix; but more than that, I would be without the car for two days. I cannot afford the loss of my car for that long. And I do not want to rely on my folks for backup, like I had for the past decade or two.

I think the time is come to buy a new car. However, I have to fix the transmission on the Aspire before I can think of trading it in. I will do that during the second week in March, as the first one will be busy enough.

my house

The house and yard have also managed to survive the nasty winter. But the back deck is shot, with most of its boards in splinters from the freezing and rethawing. I will have to dismantle it. I want to build a new deck, or at most a enclosed porch. But before I do that I want to dig out a real crawlspace under the house to access the pipes, to install network and television cables, to install pillars to prop up the floor under the appliances, and to better install poisons for the ants. I also need to buy a new push reel mower, as the current plastic one is becoming unworkable.

my work

evaluation

The annual work evaluations are coming this coming month. My focus this year will be on the Macs and obtaining at least an ACSP (Apple Certified Support Professional) certification. I will need to compile the appropriate documents and send them to my boss. Then comes the evaluation. Then I am okay for another year. I do not expect a raise this year because I expect all pay to be frozen due to the lack of money from the current mini-depression.

macs

Speaking of the Macs, I hope this coming month to learn once and for all how to keep the Macs in the library talking to the campus network without unbinding to it every two weeks. From what I have learned from the visiting Apple Engineer from Indianapolis, I have been overzealous in using every network protocol to get the Macs to connect to the campus network. It turns out I only needed the Microsoft-related protocols to make connectivity work. Of course, whether that works I will not know until after a couple of weeks go by, when the next unbinding is due.

eprints

Then we have the institutional repository. I would like to update it to the latest version of EPrints, which is 3.1. But there is no latest version for us: We are using EPrints for Windows, which is stuck at 3.0 (r3380). The guy who ported EPrints to Windows has left the EPrints project. The guy who is supposed to replace him is a higher-up who has his own stuff to do without having to be burdened with Windows crap. (At least that is what I would think about it.) Indeed, there is nothing about Windows in the big EPrints Plan. That means all the cool new features of EPrints 3.1 and the proposed features of EPrints 3.2 are beyond our reach.

I have concluded that the EPrints for Windows thing was a proof-of-concept type of project that was never meant for production. If that is the case, that means that EPrints for Windows will soon become worthless, for its foundational software (Apache 2.2.4, Perl 5.8.8, ImageMagick 6.3.5) will lose support as newer versions long suppass them.

So, EPrints 3.1.2 is the way to go. I will now need to convince everyone else that it is the way to go, even though it will mean a long struggle to get our campus computer support services (a Windows-only shop) to accept this and to port existing repository items to the new EPrints.

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