armb: Dog jumping in water (splash)
Still not dead, still not writing much on Livejournal.
Main news this year was R. applying for University, but we're still waiting to hear from most of them.
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
Also, said laptop should be able to switch from a wired network connection inside a firewall, to wifi outside firewall with VPN, transparently, when undocked/unplugged.

Or failing that, manual switching should be easy.

Recommendations? (For Ubuntu 11.10 or 12.04)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
I want a network filesystem that continues to work when the network goes away, and magically reconciles stuff when it comes back. (For use on a Linux laptop which mostly lives in a docking station, but not always.)

I've found and

Both of them look as if they are trying to solve exactly this problem, but both look like interesting research projects not really ready for production use. Am I wrong? Have I missed something?

If I fall back on "have a local copy, sync regularly with the server", any recommendations?
("Make it all a DVCS repository" (bazaar looks a front runner, git another strong possibility), and Unison are possibilities.)

(And, related, I want to be able to login while disconnected, but keep account information in step with the stuff currently using NIS.
Use "ypcat passwd" (while connected) and compare with local entries? ?
Something else?)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
(Without waiting for C++0x)

I actually made it to the pub meet yesterday for the first time in months, and the subject came up. I'm not sure if the relevent person still reads this, but looks interesting.

(Note to self, look at JVM 7 dynamic language support, re-read The Art of the Metaobject Protocol.)

Poorly PC

Mar. 23rd, 2011 08:28 pm
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
My home PC stopped booting Windows this weekend. There are backups of the important stuff that can't be reinstalled, but this could be tedious. Currently watching ddrescue (from a Linux (Debian Mint) USB stick) copying a disk image to NAS. About halfway through (having run all day), Only 1 error so far.
(It seems determined to drive my monitor at 700x400 - I can select other resolutions and the size of things changes accordingly, but not the lack of detail.)

Once I have as full and up-to-date a backup as possible, time to try Windows Restore Console. And buy some new disks possibly....
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
What's the difference between a Cultivator ("for preparation of ground prior to sowing or planting"), a Power Digger ("For digging uncultivated ground"), and a Rotavator (different web site, no description)?
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
As I mentioned before, I've been expressly forbidden from buying a "project" tandem.

[Edit: But Alice wouldn't actually fit on the back of that, so it was a silly idea.]
armb: (cycling)
I have, incidentally, been absolutely forbidden to buy a "project" tandem like or

I didn't mention (or the (slightly incomplete) tandem chainset that has been in the shed since a previous Mildenhall Cycle Rally Jumble).


Aug. 21st, 2010 07:20 pm
armb: (cycling)
We tried out a tandem today (me and R, and me and Alice (and some of the time just me)).
A Dawes Galaxy Twin, hired from

It was quite scary getting used to starting off on it, but overall considered a success.

Lunch at which was good but took a long time to arrive - R's baked stuffed sweet potato might have been a mistake, as it was a very large sweet potato, which presumably took a long time to bake.


Aug. 20th, 2010 01:59 pm
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
I think I'm going to need varifocals Real Soon Now. For reading fine print on things, or reading in low light, or looking closely at detailed maps or GPS screen on holiday, I'm peering over the top of my glasses so I can hold things closer.

Or contact lenses and reading glasses. Or more than one pair of glasses for different things. Or another possibility I haven't thought of.

(I wore hard gas permeable contact lenses for years, but gave up when I was losing tolerance for wearing them all day (with long commute partway though house moves). If I had to wear glasses part of the day, it was easier to just wear them full time. But lens technology has moved on in the around ten years since then, so going back to them might be an option. Varifocal contact lenses of a sort do exist, but I don't find the idea very convincing. But maybe they work better than I expect.)

Is there an option I've missed? Suggestions? Recommendations?

(Laser surgery to correct the basic short sight is an "eww, squick, I don't want anyone doing that to my eyes" option.)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
"H.P. Lovecraft, At the Mountains of Madness (from here): George Orwell.
George Orwell, Burmese Days, chapter one (from here): Margaret Mitchell.
Charles Manson quotes (from here, both pages, with the words “Charles Manson” removed): Kurt Vonnegut.
Mao Tse Tung (in translation, sources of quotes removed, from here): Kurt Vonnegut.
Unabomber’s Manifesto (from here): Mario Puzo.
Hitler’s Mein Kampf, chapter one (in translation, from here): Ernest Hemingway."

"Foo. Wanted cool; got balonium."


Jul. 15th, 2010 06:46 pm
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
Note to self for future reference - alternative to conventional radiators if/when the downstairs underfloor heat fails.

Not ideal - in the library it would be behind bookshelves, though I suppose we could add a plinth. But worth considering. (There are places it would look better upstairs too, but I've already done the radiators there now.)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
Optical elements that change their refractive index because of an applied electric field aren't particularly new. But actually building them into a wearable pair of glasses is.

Well, it still looks a bit vapourware-ish, but it's an intriguing possibility. And the potential for going badly and permanently wrong should be much less than the "fix underlying short sightedness with laser surgery, then use reading glasses" approach. (I don't need bifocals yet, but no doubt the time will come. I might try going back to contact lenses again first.)

(but see also )

Dear cats

Jun. 16th, 2010 08:29 am
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
Complaining about cleaning up mouse guts from the kitchen floor doesn't mean I want live mice released in the kitchen instead.
And the laundry basket might make an ideal hiding site for pouncing on your brother from, but not while it's half full of wet washing I am trying to hang on the line.


Jun. 2nd, 2010 08:46 pm
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
Looked at a newish folding bike on ebay at work. Thought "must check that as soon as I get home". Completely forgot. It's not the bike I'd ideally like, but it was collection only, not too far away (Ipswich), and probably a bargain at the price it went for for.
Oh well. Back to dithering about the Cycle2Work tax avoidance scheme.

January 2014



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