Older blog entries for sarum (starting at number 8)

13 Apr 2003 (updated 13 Apr 2003 at 14:09 UTC) »
Business:
It's the UK TAX end of year ... "Pay unto Ceaser what is Ceaser's" :(
The X Windows System:
Yes, I am one of those people ... that remembers the days of xlib and was a member of the EXUG. I have always felt a bit removed from the X community since XFree took over after the GreatUnixWar (ie AT&T+Sun vs everyone else) ended spawned the talking shop of the OSF which eat the X Consultium and then did nothing with it.
I will be watch the new developements with xwin.org with intrest.
OpenDCE:
I would realy like to find some free time to help out with this project as it is something that the *nix community should use more of. RPC technology is still the future, Web Services are infact just the same thing using XML as the transport mechanism.
Hobbies:
Things have moved on in our gaming group and we now have a large Wiki site IronFort. I let the old NewGallo site die and moved the information to NewGallo Shared Campaign.
Movies:
Saw Jonny Darko last week, a very intresting film. In a way it's rough edges are what makes the film worth watching.
Life:
It is weird but I am off to the UK SF EasterCon again this year and I notice that it is two years since I posted a diary, does life fly some times.
18 Apr 2001 (updated 11 Apr 2003 at 09:07 UTC) »
Work:
We have been very bizzy at work porting our Unix app PrintExpress over to NT using MKS's NutCracker porting software. All seams to be going well and we almost have all the Base Servers working now. After that we have the large number of Workflow Servers to do. We seem to be seeing a slowness in connection setup for TCP, over what we see on Solaris, is this an NT thing?

I have also been attempting to move from MKS's Source Intergrity 7.3a to their new version Vertical Sky's Software Manager 3.0sp2 this seams to have take up a iritatingly large amount of my time. I oftern wonder if compaines that provide this sort of developement tools hve any idea what 20 Man Year projects are really like.
Hobbies:
My NewGallo Shared World campaign is going well. Since the 19th Feb there have been 20 games refereed by 3 different referees and getting close to 25 different characters. At some stage I must find the time to update the site as there is a whole host of player created stuff.
Web:
Our web partnaship has been taking up more and more of my free time, one of our sites went live with a new version PDFcreator and I am working on the CGI to do the site in French, German, Spainish and Italian. This is at the same time as attempting to launch a brand new customer's site (more on this another time). And we seem to have other possiblities in the pipeline, maybe I can give up my day job some day :-)
Life:
I have just returned from the UK's Annual Easter SF Con. Four days of nothing but Drink, SF and Good Company in a fine hotel at cheap rates. Why where you all not there :-)
19 Feb 2001 (updated 11 Apr 2003 at 09:07 UTC) »
Movies:
I went to see Hannibal on Saturday. Personally did not think much of it. It is very professionally done, the effects are ok, the dialog is ok, the acting is ok, ... well you get the point. But the plot is unintresting and formulatic. 2/5
Work:
At work we are continuing with the project to get our app PrintExpress on NT; MKS's NutCracker arrived in the post on Friday. I will keep you all post on what I think of it as we continue with the project. I am still awaiting a PC to help in the port but I like my SunUltra10 anyway (but I would like a SunBlade, mubble mubble). Sun are rumoured to be attually shipping the new SunBlade's in the UK, real-soon-now. (PS it just arrived as I was writting this - wow).
Web:
As usual, just as I was thinking a free weekend and what shall I do with it, when by biz-partner SMS's me to say read your email ASAP. When I do there are upteen emails about new changes to one of our customers sites. Hence I then spent the rest of the weekend modify CGI etc.
Hobbies:
I have been working on my new RPG campaign background NewGallo for D&D 3rd. I have just bought the website so there is nothing on it yet. I will be updating it with the background, meta-rules and maps etc over the next few weeks.

Life:
Looks like I will being going to The Sisters of Mercy Gig this Thursday.
RPC/Hg/Samba-Tng:
Mumble, Mumble, Mumble .....
Home:
Managed to borrowed a Sun 21" Sony monitor for home. I now have it plugged into my Ultra1 & PC. It was a challenge to find the Win98 drivers for the screen but it know works in all its screen resulutions. My it is a cool thing :-)
How to make your own Pot-Zen Garden(TM)

You need:

  • One large, flat, black terracotta dish
  • Some silversand
  • An appropriate stone or two
  • A european fork or miniature rake
Preparation:

As you go around life find and select an appropriate stone for your garden. You should spend some time meditating on your stone to make sure it is right for you. It should not be too big as that will unbalance your garden and it may fall off the side table you put it on (you will then have sand everywhere).
Clean out your terracotta dish, yesterdays lasagna will detract from the ambience of the garden and will start to smell after a time.
Making it:
Pour enough sand in the terracotta dish to about half fill it. Level the sand. The next and most important part is to consult your local geomancer for the most auspicious location of your stone(s) in the dish. The location of your stone(s) is vital to the garden's cosmic balance. If you don't have a local geomancer then you will just have to look in one of those cheap Feng Shui books and hope for the best. Next get a fork and starting at one edge mark the sand with straight and/or wavy lines. Simple patterns are best left until you fully understand Zen as they can be dangerous to the unpractised mind.
Using it:
Place the Pot-Zen Garden in a place so you can see it without tripping over it every 5 minutes. Then sit calmly and meditate on the garden.
It is good idea to clean the sand out every few days, especially if you know any smokers as a large expanse of sand seems to collect their cigarette butts.
27 Jan 2001 (updated 27 Jan 2001 at 12:29 UTC) »
Cognitive Illusions by jdybnis
Your friend has two rabbits. One of them is a girl. What is the probability the other one is a girl too?

This is simple Bayian's probability example. The problem is that it is unlikely that your friend would pick there rabbits randomly :-)

Work:

I am having a day off and my boss ring me up to blame me because something went wrong with something I was asked to do. I am I wound up and p*ss *off or what ....

Movies:

Anyway I went to the local cinema, it is show every Wednesdays the films that did not get a major release here in the UK. Last week I saw Shaft and this week Bring it on. I must say Bring it on has lifted my mood quite a lot. It is far from a classic movie but as a piece of entertainment it is really quite good. I know it is about US Chearleaders, but the plot works, it is very funny in places, and the highschool girls in short skirt is not to bad as well, if you like that sort of thing. If you like Clueless or Romy and Michele's High School Reunion you will like this. Definatly a 4/5.
23 Jan 2001 (updated 23 Jan 2001 at 22:01 UTC) »

Advogato:

Been upgraded to a Jouryman, seem to have a post link now. Thanks to those that have certified me :-)

Web:

Worked all last night on the connection between our customer's website to the their payment site. There is something very wrong in the way links/forms etc works, maybe I should have a closer look at this xml-rpc stuff. Not that I will be able to upgrade a merchants server.
22 Jan 2001 (updated 23 Jan 2001 at 22:02 UTC) »

Web:

[rant on] I have just spend the weekend attempting to get a web site to work for a customer. Is it my imagination or is HTML the biggest designed by committee mess, since RS232. Is it not time that there was some form of verification scheme of browsers, and that the HTML spec was improved to be logical and orthoginal. [rant off]

Advogato:

OK so how do I post something? RPC is something I know about, maybe I should just post it here.

RPC:

I have been using RPC systems for more years than seams to be renoble, the most useable RPC system IMHO is Sun's ONC stuff. DCE is to top heavy and the API is so complex to be almost unusable. Corba & DCOM suffer from the "everything is an object" and the "network is transparents problems" as in the Sun's anti-rpc rant document A Note on Distributed Computing by Waldo, Wyant, Wollrath and Kendall. The problem with this document is that it blames the problems on RPC itself when the problems are the design of complex RPC systems. Once you abstracted the programmer from the fact that this procedure call is really a network client/server call, which can fail, then you have caused more problems than you have solved.
18 Jan 2001 (updated 23 Jan 2001 at 22:03 UTC) »
Work:
Much to my suprise the software I work on a Monotype Systems has made it to two Sun Success Stories pages: maybe not a freeware thing but it made me smile :-)

Web:

Unforcanty I have been to bizzy on working on the a new website in my freetime to get on with Hg but I hope to continue with it soon.

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