Ahhhhh what is this

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013 10:54 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)

I'm switching my laptop from VMWare to VirtualBox (basically cloning the already working version from my desktop, which has things properly set up for email, etc) -- and ran into issues with networking. And at first I thought it was because I hadn't set up dnsmasq properly, or that it was this old issue with setting up dhcp that I vaguely remembered having to deal with the first time.

But after fixing all that, still nothing. And uh. It turns out the solution was to rename the interfaces from eth0/eth1 to eth4/eth5.

I have no idea what just happened, other than that my computers have decided that it's fun to mess with me.

(I think the main reason I'm leery of sysad stuff is that every time I come back to edit something, I have to basically start from scratch. I should try to figure out how to easily document my actions when I work on the sysadmin side of things, so I can find out what I just did, two months from now.

It's really easy for code, e.g., git status, git stash, but the same trial and error approach I do for code just leads to confusion when I try to remember what I just did when it comes to working on my system...)

(I'm beginning to think that the other reason I find sysadminning so hard is that I only rarely can figure out from the instructions which parameters are arbitrary, and which parameters must be based on values from your system. For instance, in:

VBoxManage dhcpserver add –netname (the internal network name e.g. intnet) –ip <your RFC 1918 address> (e.g. 192.168.x.x, 10.x.x.x, 172.16.x.x)\
–netmask <your subnet mask> (e.g. –lowerip <your lower IP range> (e.g. –upperip <your upper IP range> (e.g.
  • --netname is arbitrary
  • --ip is sort of arbitrary, but I thought it had to be based off an already assigned ip address
  • -- netmask is always just for my purposes
  • --lowerip/--upperip are arbitrary, but since I was confused about --ip before...

Also in the GUI, there's an adapter IP and the DHCP server IP, and it's not clear whether the --ip is for the former or the latter. It turns out it's the former, but good heavens how do people know? I basically had to plug in reasonable-seeming values and restarting stuff to test, with the only feedback being that it either failed or succeeded, and no way of telling which of the inputs was the reason for the failure, or if it was none of those.

UGH. Not my favorite thing in the world.)

Kindle or Nook?

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012 03:09 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I'm trying to decide between a Kindle and a Nook. The Nook seems to win on all issues important to me, but, and this is the biggest thing against it: it's not available locally, and I can't get it even with a credit card because it only accepts US billing addresses. (the second biggest issue: I'd have trouble exchanging it in case I ran into warranty issues)

I can, however get the Kindle. My biggest reason for avoiding the Kindle is that it doesn't support epubs. And yes I know that I can use Calibre to convert, but that's a bit like telling me I can run a program by compiling it from source. I appreciate the possibility is there, and sometimes I may even want to use it, but I don't want to have it as my first step. (this is the same reason I avoid DRM'd ebooks)

Besides, I'd rather support the book publishers selling epubs already, and then just drop it in, not have to fiddle with dog-slow conversion each time.

But my issue now basically is: international support or epub support? And if I get the Nook can I use it without registering anyway? And if I get the Kindle, will I ever get past my annoyance at its nonsupport of epubs to ever use it? Which is the lesser of two evils? Oy.
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I love tea, and I have a couple containers of loose-leaf lying around somewhere, but I generally forget to drink it because we don't have a teapot, so it's very fussy to boil water in a pot and then pour it into a glass to steep, and then do that again once the single mug is gone.

But uh. Apparently we have a tea ball, which I found in box of post-its, and it is so much easier to use, frankly it makes me happy to a ridiculous level :)

(It just occurred to me that I could have used the hot water dispenser with the loose-leaf, but!)

SO ANYWAY. I have a stomach full of warm tea, a list of things to do, and a calm, relaxed sense of well being. Tea is awesome.

My grandpa wanted to spend some time out of the city, so we (grandpa, me, cousin, aunt) went to Subic over the weekend. Sadly it rained, which meant we had to forego a lot of the things we wanted to do, so the weekend was boring, but it was boring in a stress-free chill kind of way. That's okay. (In fact, that's very okay)

Also okay: we found a restaurant that serves an excellent fried shrimp dish with salt and pepper. Excellent I say :)

Ummmm. I did get to drape my arm over a tiger, though, so uh yay? It was two years old and kinda big but mostly it ignored us. So I wasn't terrified, but there was no way I was going to move my hand off of where the trainer put it.

Oh! And I borrowed my brother's camera, which beats my crappy phone camera, so theoretically should have been able to get decent shots. Unfortunately, I didn't really know how to compensate for blurring under low light conditions. I had to immediately throw away two-thirds of my shots because they were blurry; that leaves me some 250-odd to go through for quality. Still better than my old record which is taking two shots early in the day, then forgetting to get any later on.

Cameras are fun! Having been able to take photos on this trip makes me want to splurge on a phone with a better camera. I mean it won't be any kind of DSLR, but it should get me to near enough point-and-shoot that I'll be able to take photos on a whim (currently, whims are broken by the fact that the camera on my phone takes forever to load and doesn't really take good pics besides). Bonus: with the right app, I can just upload and share the pics as I take them, rather than having to remember to sync from the camera and organize and etc (...currently Flickr crashes on my phone when I try to upload. Another point for getting a new phone)

Currently my options are the iPhone 4S, and, well, the iPhone 4S. I've thought about trying out Android, but honestly I can't be bothered to wade into the ios-vs-android religious wars long enough to find a review that'll influence my decision either way.

Also, speaking of DSLRs, it turns out that if you turn the zoom level way up, that can aggravate blurriness in low-light, especially if you accidentally turn off image stabilization. Even the very best technology can't help a person who's determined to shoot themselves in the foot /o\

Also, also, I am tempted to tweak the default Tags module location so it's the first thing that comes after the entry, rather than the icon, but maybe that's too big a change now. Hm.
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I stumbled across the TECHKnitting blog and whoa, wow. I wanna knit like that when I grow up :)

Have gone through most of the entries, and even the smallest tips (such as this one which gives advice for pushing the left needle back when moving stitches around, without hurting your finger.

Equally awesome, she has an entry where she lays out how to fix a dropped stitch down the side, especially pointing out why the dropped stitch down the side looks so hard, and not twenty-four hours after I read that entry, I'd used the knowledge to fix something -- thrice!

Saved me having to undo and redo several hundred stitches each time :)

Got the second backup drive finally. She's Western Digital, 2TB, USB 3.0 and not too expensive. She also hase a name.

naming system )

I love technology ♥

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011 10:37 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I am sitting in bed, listening to my portable mobile tablet read an ebook to me, while I knit. I don't need to look at the screen (which is good, because my eyes are tired. I'm at the point where I'm squinting at the screen, but not at the point where my head aches from the light), and I don't need to turn the pages (which is fantastic, because my hands are full of knitting).

I'd played with VoiceOver settings before, because I knew I'd want to try it out in case of headache / tiredness, but this is the first time that I've used VoiceOver in real world use, rather than just testing snippets here and there.

So far so good :)

One thing that held me back at first is that in general, I get more tired when listening than I do when reading. However, after fiddling with the settings, I found out that lowering the volume and speeding up the speaking rate (both of which were unintuitive steps to me) has helped reduce the weariness.

Reducing the volume reduces the feeling that I'm being shouted at, and lets me listen with less stress. And increasing the speaking rate increased my comprehension (do you know the studies that say that speed readers absorb more information than slow readers, because they take in things a block at a time rather than a word at a time? I suspect it's something like that. Or it may be because I'm less bored and my mind has less time to wander).

Anyway, yes, really glad that I have the tools that I have \o/ I love tech!
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I run my dev environment (ubuntu) in a VM on my laptop, because that makes things a lot easier for me. Unfortunately

cmd+alt+fn + f1 through f6 = virtual terminal mode

(I don't need the full gnome mode, and the terminal I get to by logging in via the GUI login is weird. It seems to be bigger than my actual window size and all output is way past the lower edge of my screen, so when I type, I can't see what I'm typing, and after I run a command, I have to hit enter approximately half a gajillion times before I can find my output.)

apt-get install console-data
dpkg-reconfigure console-data

(installing and configuring console-data has let me set the terminal keyboard to dvorak, rather than qwerty. It's not a big deal; I usually just ssh into my dev environment using the Terminal application, but it's been a minor annoyance, that now is fixed yay :D)
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Some pictures of loot I've hauled home from June through to August. Some are long overdue. Most involve yarn *g*

All of them were taken using a phone camera, so please excuse the quality!

yarn - Australia )

yarn - USA )

yarn - local yarn store (Dreams Yarnshoppe) )

books, tech, etc )

So all in all, I have enough to keep me busy for the next six months or more. *purrs*
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Hm, ever since NetNewsWire discontinued their online syncing service, I've stopped reading feeds. I'm actually kinda glad it happened, because I had been wanting to cut myself off, cut down the number of things I obsessively refresh, but felt unable to do it on my own (what if I miss something important??).

Anyway, I've spent the past few months cut off from my feed reader. But I haven't been feed-less: I've been adding new interesting feeds to my reading page on Dreamwidth, and I've hit a good compromise -- I have to balance them with the amount of personal entries on my reading page, so I don't subscribe to the high-volume ones that I would only be skimming *anyway*.

So I've been ramping up slowly, and I'm finally feeling up to setting up feed reading again; maybe I'll try exporting my old feed list from NetNewsWire to Google Reader and promise myself that I'll only read them when I'm bored (ahahha).

*or* maybe I'll keep up my feed-abstinence, force myself to produce something when I'm bored instead of happily consuming what everyone else is producing. Hmmmm. (Maybe there is such a thing as being too happy :-))