Older blog entries for Bryce (starting at number 899)

15 Oct 2002 (updated 15 Oct 2002 at 12:18 UTC) »


Rain stayed away so we tripped off to Tullymore Forest park and went walking around the forest trails there. I highly recommend the forest trail there as it's very well maintained. Very scenic. Spent a few hours hiking around the park.

Went on from there to look at Newcastle as there was supposed to be a high nap tide today and I was curious to see if there would be any flooding as a result. Seems that Newcastle will survive a good while yet.

Back home, did a bit more Zen* tidyup. I'm a bit perplexed that we've run out of space on ZenIIIb already. nm is having a little look at ZenIIIa atm so we'll see what he's got to say on the matter.

15 Oct 2002 (updated 15 Oct 2002 at 12:29 UTC) »


Whee. Heavy rain. Rained all day. It's been so long since I've seen a decent downpour. NC is fine if you like near endless sunshine, but that gets horribly monotonous after a few months.

Picked through the Linux device drivers book. Wrote a few test modules without upsetting the kernel too much. Theres a number of USB devices I have that I'd like to get up and running under linux.

Poped online and started taking stock of the shape of the Zen* cluster. Lots of jobs to sort out 8/ ZenII only has a couple of weeks to go to pass the 'been running continously for a year' mark. I've promised _rmk_ that I'll update the kernel then, though there is a running concern that because ZenII hasn't been rebooted for such a long time we're unsure if it will reboot ok or not. Ummm...

Rearranged some of the weblogs which were somewhat large and tidied up the ftp archive space a bit. ZenIIIb seems to be out of disk space for ftp use. I think I'll subject it to log analysis and work out whats being mirrored that people simply arn't downloading and nuke it.

_A_ managed to tread into hot water by nuking mum's Zen account and a few others. He made the clasic mistake of believeing lastlog which is notoriously broken. Especially with Zen having been up and running so long many active accounts have simply dropped off the end of thelog. Corrected the problem before mum found out. Actually a number of accounts went the same way and I spent a while ressurecting them.

15 Oct 2002 (updated 15 Oct 2002 at 13:50 UTC) »


Walked along the towpath at Pontzpass. The council have seen fit to bury about 5 million of EU money into restoring the Newry canal. So far they seem to have managed to erect some Millenium signposts complete with engraved phone numbers for some business. Can't say that that impresses me one bit. 1) said phone number will probably not work as I noticed that the area code has already changed 2) you don't go around to some ancient monument and find an ancient advert for "McManus the elder's pork pie, only 1 groat" chiseled onto it.

I believe they are supposed to clean out the canal and have some tourist canal rides running up and down it, however, looking at the canal, I can see that that could take quite some years to do as it's heavily overgrown and silted. EU money hard at work. <pfft>. Well at least the towpath itself is in good repair.

Went home a few hours later and sorted through a load of paperwork that I needed to organise. Still trying to create space in the bedroom for items that I brough back from the US. Fortunately there's nothing in it that I'm desperatly needing so the status quo suits me fine. For the moment.

Arranged for to have BT install a second line for my internet connectivity. Unfortunaltely they can't even give me ISDN out here, let alone broadband. Worse thay can't come out for *9* days. I feel somewhat let don by a company thats going all out to say how wonderful they are at giving people broadband. I guess I'm going to be looking at satalite in the future but satalite is expensive so I probably won't be able to aford that until January. *sigh*

15 Oct 2002 (updated 15 Oct 2002 at 12:24 UTC) »


Clamber over the Cloughmore stone and Sleive Martin. Much unwanted exercise. Naturally, my heel started to play up and got quite sore about 3/4's of the way up the main climb. <mutter>. Explain how this is supposed to healthy to me again please?


4 Oct 2002 (updated 5 Oct 2002 at 11:40 UTC) »


Humm well mum and myself went for a walk up Slieve Gullion (mountain) before breakfast (ok so breakfast to me is currently 10:00, but I digress) The going was rather wet from yesterdays rain. I'm also slightly out of shape,.. (embarrased look) Much huffing and puffing later had the specatular view of the

inside of a cloud... couldn't see a damned thing which rather spoiled my photo shoot.

Went on a little excursion after coming back down around the back of Camlough lake.

Back at base, got email from one potential employer. Somewhat intresting. Some of the legalise looks a little iffy though. Contined with the shifting of junk to the bin to make way for the books. Time to lift the bar on what I can call junk I fear 8/ Still, if there isn't room, it's gotta go.

Mum's sisters called out to give her a present from when they were off in Australia and to have a natter. Had a brief talk with them myself.

Little later on, ran into town to get a few messages and fill the car up with diesel. Well, that was a shock. 79 pence a litre. So with a little conversion, that equates to £2.99 a US Gallon which when you convert back into dollars makes a US Gallon of gas $4.66 which is a far cry from the $1.35 I used to pay. So UK petrol/gas is about 3.4 times more expensive than in the US. Last time I'll fill up in the UK. Fortunately I'm close enough to the border to be able to drive into Eire and buy diesel there in Euro's for a damned sight less. Still more than I would have had to pay in the US but significantly less than what I'd pay under the UK petrol taxation schemes. To think, only 4 years ago it was about 42 pence a litre. The UK Government has a nasty habit of using the UK motorist as it's private piggybank whenever it overspends.


Watched the rain. Nice steady drizzle, not one of these 15 minute downpours that I used to see in NC. Odd how you can miss the rain

Got a call from Al, another friend that I'd not heard much from since he came and stayed over for a week or so while I was in NC Caught up on the fun of whats going on in his life.

Got email from James back in IBM^H^H^HAT&T also wanting to hear what was the craic was now that I was back in the UK. Must give him a ring later on.

Did a little more slash and burn on the contents of my room. I'm getting close on enough space to sort out the books. I need shelving.

Looking around the rest of the house I see a number of odd jobs that need attention eg painting, replacement of the eves, guttering needs cleaning etc. Ugh. Oh well it'll keep me busy and out of harms way I guess.


Drove into town, sorry, city (they recently upgraded the status to city probably in an effort to increase taxes) to go looking for nice periodicals like Computer Weekly which I remember used to have pages and pages of IT jobs in the back section. Damned if I could find it. (Found out later that WH Smiths in Belfast still carry it) Bought Linux Pro, Linux Magazine, Broadband and Computer Shopper to catch up on the UK status quo.

From the Broadband maazine, it looks like if I want to shift off 56K modem tech (running at 44K max connect to BT 8/) then, I'm looking at satalite comms. I'm apparently just a little too far out from the exchange to get ADSL. I suppose I could get a leased line but thats WAY too expensive and theres no cable in the local area. Thers no wireless network in the area either 8/ I have to say though that the broadband magazine was rather useful. Looking at various coverage maps, it certainly looks like BT have been dragging their heals over the last few years. I'm a bit peeved at the ADSL situation though. I don't think BT do ADSL repeaters. So, as I say, I think I'm left with satalite as my only other sensible alternative.

Read some of the reviews on RH Advanced Server. Innocent whistle. I'm saying nothing.


Paperwork day. Lots and lots of paperwork.

Popped onto IRC to be mugged by Timp and Sopwith from back in the office. Least no one has merrily tried to shift blame for amything bad onto my shoulders yet. Still I bet it's only a matter of time 8) Even if it is for lack of dark muttering.

Elliot brought me up to speed on the fate of the alphas. Timp went through a list of assets still in my cubicle that they weren't sure about. Something tells me Timp managed to get the better deal by asking first what was available for redistribution.

Got final word From Ben that the car had been sold off at carmax (much happiness). Seems Jeremy didn't pickup the DVD player I'd sold to him. Asked Timp to catch Jeremy and get the money off him and give it to Ben for his good deeds.

Started catching up on the diary. I'll have to post it in as one huge update.


Still a little stiff but otherwise OK. I don't want a recurance of that back trouble ever again.

Popped into the DHS to sort out getting signed up for social security. Noticed that even though they had a 'take a ticket and wait for your number to be called', an awful lot of people just barged into line. Rather pathetic really. Whats worse is that they kept doing it even when there was a staff member there shouting out the numbers. Finally got sorted out an went on home after getting a few messages for mum and having a little look around at a couple of the larger stores on the Armagh road. Bit depressing to see the range of goods is somewhat limited and downmarket from the last time I was over 8/

Not a lot else happening today. Mum was supposed to be working on taxes (due in today naturally) but seemed to get conviently distracted to go do something else.

Still working out where to put stuff in my room. I need to get rid of at least 1/2 of whats currently in there already.

Looking at the car thats been in torage for the last 2 1/2 years, I see that it has a rust spot on one of the rear wheel archs. That'll be a bugger to fix. I'll need to get gauze etc to patch it up. For the moment it's fine. I'll tackle it when I'm a litle more organised.

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