Older blog entries for Phoon (starting at number 41)

28 May 2001 (updated 29 May 2001 at 00:05 UTC) »
Early Morning.

job hunting

Yeah, it's me again.

The job hunt's been fairly futile. I applied at Circuit City, and they seemed interested to have a warm body actually interested in the job. I learned why when someone told me about their pay system. I'm not going to post anything here, in case what I was told is wrong. If I were to be offered the job, I'd probably accept it... even with the pay system. Crappy commissions are better than nothing at all.

The Best Buy across the street from said Circuit City isn't hiring. Shame, since that's where I really wanted to work. I'm not really interested in sales; repair is where I'd like to be.

Radio Shack is hiring. That might be an acceptable place to work. I figure I could peddle cheap consumer equipment... even *gag* MSN...

And I refuse to work in fast food if there's any alternative. I would rather shovel manure at a farm than flip burgers.

My dad thinks that every store's hiring, and that companies are just begging for people. That's true, except in anything remotely interesting, and especially computer-related jobs. All the companies that are hiring (except for the aforementioned) are hard, backbreaking, manual labor. Either that or burger flipping, and I'd rather take the manual labor.


I wrote my first Gtk-Perl script the other day. It's a wrapper for LoserJabber, which takes an ithought entry and passes it to LoserJabber's text frontend to be uploaded to LiveJournal.

Simple, but not bad for a first script.

Not much else going on... once I get a job I'll probably buy an iMac to run OSX and LinuxPPC on.

Can a Mac dual-boot? I'd like to be able to play with both OSes without having to own two Macs.



Is there a requirement that diary entries must be relevant to open source? If so, I'd like to know before I go on breaking it.

A portion of my previous entry has been moved to my LiveJournal. I mean, I forget that a majority of users here don't care whether I manage to gather up the courage needed to ask someone out.

Even if I don't post them here, if you still want to hear about my romantic exploits (or lack thereof), they will still be posted to the Web... with the URL changed.

If you have an opinion, let me know. If you have an opinion and the authority to enforce it, let everyone know.


I've been trying to teach a lady in my campground how to use her computer. I've been failing miserably.

Does anyone know of any guides to computer pedagogy? I have a hard time explaining things to people who aren't near my own level of experience. (In other words, they have to have a clue to begin with... I don't wield the cluebat, although I'm sorely tempted sometimes.)

I'm also tempted to start a computer-repair business out of my own home. I need to find out what that would entail. I'm tired of working for donations. I'd also like to increase business.

Also, what's a good rate to charge for computer instruction? The one lady I'm teaching gives me $8 per hour. I feel like I'm getting ripped off. At least it's only once a week, and is flexible.


Read Starship Troopers today. It's infinitely better than the movie.

Also made headway into The Hitchhiker's Trilogy. It's amazing how many in-jokes I missed the first time around.

22 May 2001 (updated 30 May 2001 at 02:59 UTC) »

semi-computer-related things

Yeah, it's been a while since I've posted anything. Maybe that's a good thing. Maybe it's just a sign of how boring my life is. I don't know.

I've been appointed webmaster for the International Circle, a new club starting at my school. The good news: since the site doesn't exist yet, there's no cruft I have to work through. The bad news: They may require me to use *ick* FrontPage. If they want me to use that, they can find themselves a new webmaster. It's bad enough that it's probably going to be hosted on a NT machine without Perl or PHP (as if I knew PHP).

Anyway, I have a prototype site up (created with Bluefish and GIMP), but the location is semi-secret. Even if you find it, there's not much there that's even remotely interesting. We don't even have a logo yet, for crying out loud.

I've also been hacking on ithought, trying to see how I could pass a value back from a plugin into the main program. It's a little more difficult than expected, with the current plugin framework.

life? what's that?

[ This portion of my entry has been moved to my LiveJournal. ]

In other news, I've been trying to find a job. No such luck. It's not like I'm not qualified... it's just that I don't want to whore myself out for minimum wage bagging groceries when I could be... I don't know, at least selling computers, if not repairing (or sysadminning) them. I can't take most jobs, because I can't work standard 9-5 hours and still attend school. And you have to understand that school is my highest priority.

Overall, the whole situation sucks. Right now, I have plenty of time, but no money. If I get a job, I'll have the money I need, but not enough time to spend it, especially with school.

Anyway. I'm going to go get something to eat, then I'm going to grow some cojones and ask my friend out. Wish me luck.

[ The remainder of this entry has also been moved to my LiveJournal. The Cliff's Notes: I couldn't ask her out because she wasn't there. ]


divx ;-) project idea

I've been struggling with aviplay's dismal performance on my (admittedly old) system. (Frankly, it runs like a pig on quaaludes.)

But it gave me an idea. Why not create a DivX ;-) to MPEG-1 reencoder? My system's certainly beefy enough to handle MPEG-1. And especially since many... well... "adult" video clips are now being distributed as DivX ;-), and I'm tired of rebooting into Winblows to play them with any reasonable speed.

Besides, with avifile, not only could I handle DivX, but ASF too...

12 May 2001 (updated 30 May 2001 at 03:00 UTC) »


raph: I suggested a few things earlier... check out this entry. Again, most of the ideas come straight from LiveJournal, and some have already been implemented, but the rest would be nice to have here, too.

11 May 2001 (updated 30 May 2001 at 03:01 UTC) »

this page intentionally left blank

Yes, there was a real entry here. No, it's not here anymore. Yes, I intentionally removed it.

Move along, nothing to see here.

10 May 2001 (updated 30 May 2001 at 03:02 UTC) »


Just got my grade report:

Calculus II: A.
General Chemistry 1: A.
First Year Spanish 1: A.

I'm proud of myself.

file dumping

I wrote a small module for ithought that exports an entry to a filename the user selects. It works, but it has some problems. For example, if you enter a filename you can't write to, it crashes ithought. (This could be fixed with stat(), but I've never learned how... time to go RTFM...)

It's a module we really need, though, so I'll keep learning.

"intellectual gang-rape"

tripp: I agree heartily with your analogy. It makes things easy for the uninitiated to understand.

The remainder of my entry has been deleted. It was inflammatory and was not appropriate for Advogato.

8 May 2001 (updated 8 May 2001 at 00:31 UTC) »

credit where credit is due

kgb: I notice you referred to it as "phoon's ithought stuff"... as a matter of fact, virtually all of the credit goes to voltron. He started the project, wrote 90% of the code for the original version and all of the code for the rewrite, plus he handles the Web side of things, and maintains our SourceForge presence. I just submit changes here and there (in other words, I'm just a code monkey).

But I'm a very proud code monkey. ;-)

vicious rumors

vicious: "me and yakk found out that the americans actually won the vietnam war."

Uhm... no. We Americans hauled ass from Vietnam on 29 April 1975. While we may not have lost, we certainly didn't win.



Well, I'm finally out of this rut I've been in, I think. I sat down last night and hacked out a new feature for the Advogato posting module in ithought. Actually, it adds support for other mod_virgule hosts, such as Badvogato and Robots.net. This is nice, because I can start my own mod_virgule server to test with.

I also stomped a minor (?) bug that caused random text to be posted when "Convert to HTML" was enabled. Turns out I forgot to null-terminate a string. Whoops!


I'm gonna run down to the mailbox in a few minutes and see if my grades are here yet.

Next semester, I'm taking First Year Spanish 2 and Beginner Piano. Time to cultivate the right side of my gray matter blob.

"If I have seen further, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants." -- Sir Isaac Newton

2 May 2001 (updated 2 May 2001 at 10:56 UTC) »


I have two final exams today. Chemistry and Calculus 2. Wheee.

Tomorrow is my Spanish final. I think I'm prepared.

red tape

I've never had a good experience with class registration. Here's what I had to go through for Summer 2001:

  • I wait in line for over an hour to register.
  • When I finally get a chance to register, they claim I have overdue library books. I don't have any overdue library books. So I have to run all the way to the library, physically unwedge their heads from their rectums, get the hold cleared, and get back in line. Luckily, I'm allowed to re-enter the line near the front.
  • They claim two of the classes I was registering for were repeated classes. It turns out they counted my first C class as "Programming Techniques", but didn't tell me. But that still left Ethics, which I've never taken. Somehow, when they renumbered their courses, their computer got confused and now thinks Physics and Ethics are the same course. They insert me into the class manually.
  • I go to the cashier to pick up the fee sheet/schedule. There they tell me I need to pay first, prompting me to visit the financial aid office. There they tell me my Pell grant has run out, even though I was told I would have enough for summer. I leave to call my dad.
  • With Dad's permission, I drop all but one course (I don't have to take a full load since I'm not getting financial aid!) and pay for that course with his credit card. Luckily, this course (Spanish 2) is a continuation of a course I've already had, so I don't need to buy any more books.
  • I go home and bitch and moan about the college's incompetent staff. The whole time I've been here, the Student Services staff have been the incompetent ones and Financial Aid seemed like they knew what they were doing. Now it's the other way around; Student Services did their job well, and Financial Aid is suffering from a case of recto-cranial inversion.


I still haven't shaken this slump. Not a single line of code written.

Maybe I should take a programming class, but since I'm paying out of pocket, I may as well just buy a couple good books and get started again.

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