Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Microsoft is Funny

So, I've got the Win2k box at work with a corrupted registry such that it will not boot. A little searching indicates a tool from Microsoft which may or may not repair the registry.
It is here.
"Overview
Registry Corruption in Windows 2000 can prevent your system from booting. The Windows 2000 Registry Repair Utility is a tool that can help to recover a Windows 2000 system from registry corruption. "

That's not the funny bit. The funny bit is that in order to download this tool you need to go through the "Genuine Windows Validation" process. This involves running a validation tool on your Windows box that determines if your copy of Windows is legal. Of course this requires a bootable Windows system.

Do you see the problem here?

Adsense Cracks Me Up

Google Adsense is funny.

For some unknown reason lately I've written a number of posts explaining various reasons why laptops suck (and, by the way, laptops do indeed suck, but you knew that already, right). Now every time I load this page Adsense tries to sell me a laptop. That's funny.

I also find shiny things amusing.

Xubuntu - Ubuntu with XFCE

Xubuntu - Ubuntu Wiki: "The aim of the Xubuntu community project is to provide a nice Ubuntu desktop experience (even on older hardware) by using Xfce4 as the desktop environment and GTK 2 applications wherever possible."

I'd just kind of assumed it was Ubuntu for the XBox or something. Yes I am a bit thick.

I'm not convinced that having a seperate Ubuntu for each window manager and/or desktop environment is really the way to go, but what the hell do I know.

Looking forward to FluxboxUbuntu, E17Ubuntu, and WindowmakerUbuntu. Also, how about one that uses the Explorer shell - it could be called BSODUbuntu.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Cheaper Veggie Diesel May Change the Way We Drive

Cheaper Veggie Diesel May Change the Way We Drive

"Japanese scientists may have found a cheaper and more efficient way to produce biodiesel." Well good for them. Excuse me while I go and bury my head in the sand and deny the serious potential for resource depletion that faces us right now.

Now if somebody could please point me to a cheaper and more efficient, and let me add more effective, way to produce the toxic waste known as Henry the Adequate that would be really handy. I have to type all of those words, by hand. Not only that, I have to actually make up the sentences myself. What a drag.

Fortunately I don't have to worry about arcane concepts like plot, and characterisation, and theme, and good writing. Because that would be really difficult.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Damn You Ubuntu

It is common knowledge that Mark Shuttleworth and his merry band of Ubuntuites will ship you your very own Ubuntu CD at no charge - not even postage. What is not widely reported is a serious bug in the whole process. Let me explain...

I go to http://www.ubuntu.com and start thinking "Wouldn't it be cool to get my very own official Ubuntu CD in the post". I click the "Ship It - Free CDs" link, sign up for the Launchpad, then go to order myself some CDs. It turns out the minimum they will ship is five, since the cost to send five is barely more than for one.

I fill in my details. Now so far the process has been smooth.

But it is right about this point the whole thing falls in a heap,and there is nothing I can do to recover from the crash, no matter how many time I start over. I just cannot get my brain to accept the idea that it is ok to allow Mr Shuttleworth to pay the cost of sending me the CDs. Pesky conscience.

But the thing is I have no qualms about downloading the CD at no charge, even though it costs Mr Shuttleworth and his company $$ to create their distribution. Pesky inconsistent conscience.

Next time I'm going to do it, dammit. I shall muster ever iota of willpower at my disposal and click that damn submit button if it causes my brain to leak out through my ears and leave a nasty stain on the carpet. I will kid myself that it's alright because I will give the extra CDs out to friends, and thus spread the word, and somewhere down the line somebody will pay Ubuntu for services or something, and that will make it alright. Whatever it takes, because I really really want my free Ubuntu CD.

Damn pesky inconsistent hard-to-fool conscience.

UPDATE: And the solution is of course, as pointed out to me here and on the Ubuntu forums, to donate.

Hard Disk’s hard life

glandium.org - Hard Disk’s hard life

Sigh. Another reason to avoid laptops. Is this turning into a bit of a crusade? I really don't feel strongly about this stuff. Honestly I don't.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Helios Extracts Microsoft Stupid Tax From Windows User

� Blog Archive � Helios Extracts Microsoft Stupid Tax From Windows User

Shame on you Helious - helping extract the Microsoft Stupid Tax is reprehensible, irresponsible, and maybe a little bit risible.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Wanna Buy a Bridge?

So I'm looking at laptops. Why? I hate laptops, but on the other hand do love gadgets. Besides, it seems I can now get one under a thousand dollars, even in Australia.

Anyway, my requirements are simple - cheap, and will run Linux. Actually it turns out my requirements are incredibly complex. It seems vendors are only interested in selling laptops that will run a certain five year old operating system.

http://www.linux-laptop.net/ while theortically useful turns out to have no information on any of the models I'm looking at. Google is altogether less useful in this case.

I just want to repeat this one more time: Retailers will only sell laptops designed to run an ancient, insecure, unreliable hack of an operating system from a company that demonstrates over and over that they cannot be trusted.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Quote of the Moment

There are but two ways of forming an opinion in science. One is the scientific method; the other, the scholastic. One can judge from experiment, or one can blindly accept Authority. To the scientific mind, experimental proof is all important and theory is merely a convenience in description, to be junked when it no longer fits. To the academic mind, Authority is everything and facts are junked when they do not fit theory laid down by authority.

- Robert Heinlein

Friday, November 18, 2005

Quote of the Day

"People sometimes ask me if it is a sin in the Church of Emacs to use vi. Using a free version of vi is not a sin; it is a penance. So happy hacking."
- RMS

I have a lot of respect for RMS. He's wrong here, of course. Emacs sucks. Long live vi.

MIT $100 laptop

Pocket-lint.co.uk MIT unveils $100 laptop to the world - PLUS IMAGES news story

I want one of these.

PS I hate laptops. Laptops suck.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Symantec is Evil too

� Blog Archive � Like finding out your brother’s been sleeping with your girlfriend

Helios tells it like it is. Did I mention I really miss Windows?

I was going to leave it at that, but just couldn't. It has been clear for some years now that Microsoft's customers can't trust Microsoft. For some reason this is considered acceptable by most of them. But if your antivirus company - the people you turn to for the security Microsoft failed to provide - if your antivirus company is also screwing you then how the hell can you continue to use Windows?

Who exactly are you going to turn to now?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Cluelessness and the Internet

http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20051029224050493
"Corporations prefer clueless customers, I guess, but the Internet is wiping out cluelessness."

Can anybody really be so clueless as to think the internet is wiping out cluelessness? On the contrary, the internet is the greatest cluelessness facilitator ever invented by man. Just read some of the opinions out there. Hell, read some of mine!

The one saving grace is that the internet also facilitates truth and cluefulness, and artlessly constructed pseudo-words like cluefulness.

"Never underestimate the power of human stupidity" - Robert Heinlein

I Hate Printers

I have a Canon printer. (Serves me right, you say? How can I argue with that?)

It is an inkjet, utilizing four ink tanks. Whenever one colour runs out the printer driver refuses to operate, even if we are only printing black. And 99% of the time we are only printing black.

Big deal, I can hear you say, so the colour tanks will last forever if you're only printing black. Ah, but the damn ink evaporates. We are constantly replacing colour tanks, just so we can print black. Why do I get this strange feeling I am being screwed? And if I'm being screwed, how come I'm not enjoying it?

Monday, November 14, 2005

Linux = Boring

Linux has become boring.

I used to read Distrowatch daily.
I used to download ISOs just to try them out.
I used to switch distros regularly, looking for something better.
Now all that has ended, and I blame Debian. Why O Why did you have to be so damn good!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Turn on the Babysitter

Contrary to popular opinion the Television (or computer, gamecube, etc) makes a lousy babysitter. The TV can't feed the kids when they're screaming for food, or force-feed them the damn remote control they're fighting over, or even bash them round the head with a big stick. What kind of a babysitter is it that can't do these fundamental things.

Send them off to work in the mines. Not only do you get a little peace and quiet, you actually get paid for it!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Statement of Audience
---------------------
I realize that nothing I say matters to anyone else on the entire planet. My opinions are useless and unfocused. I am an expert in nothing. I know nothing. I am confused about almost everything. I cannot, as an individual, ever possibly know everything, or even enough to make editorial commentary on the vast vast majority of things that exist in my world. This is a stupid document; it is meaningless drivel that I do not expect any of the several billion people on my planet to actually read. People who do read my rambling, incoherent dumbfuckery are probably just as confused as I am, if not moreso, as they are looking to my sorry ass for an opinion when they should be outside playing Frisbee with their dog or screwing their life partner or getting a dog or getting a life partner. Anyone who actually takes the time to read my bullshit probably deserves to ingest my fucked up and obviously mistaken opinions on whatever it is that I have written about.

Ben
http://mama.indstate.edu/users/bones/WhyIHateWebLogs.html
Please add the above Statement of Audience to your own weblog.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

The Insidious Effects of Computer Games

Five year olds are playing with their toy ponies. One stands and announces "I'm going to the toilet. Pause the game."

Cracks me up every time.