Older blog entries for ajv (starting at number 82)

cancer of the neck

It's official: I have a cyst the size of a marble in one of my lymph thingies in my neck.

I see a specialist next Monday, who will probably use a needle the length and diameter of a drinking straw.

Take that, Terrence and Philip!


Working towards an XFree86 patch kit for 3.3.6 and 4.0.2 to address the recently re-released LWN moans.


Have a cyst or some other awful lump turn up in the last couple of weeks. Going to the doctor to get that sorted out.

Also visiting the dentist today to get temporary fillings replaced with real fillings.

What fun.


not much happening. Laptop is getting better.


Keep up the drugs, good buddy. I'm not sure what you're on, but I want a couple of kg sent my way. :-)

22 Jan 2001 (updated 22 Jan 2001 at 13:06 UTC) »

jerry! jerry! jerrrrrrry!


Trying out RH 7.0 on Mr laptop. Work provides me with a Citrix session, so basically I'll install the Citrix client on Linux and see where we go from there.

Problems noted so far:

I have a USB mouse. RH has a screenblanker that's set offensively low (it's like 20 seconds or similar) that blanks the screen if I'm just using a mouse (like when I'm browsing). Using xset s off doesn't help, so it's something else doing it.

I'm going to install KDE 2.1 beta 1 and see how that works.

21 Jan 2001 (updated 21 Jan 2001 at 13:42 UTC) »
LCA speaker's BBQ

Had a great time organising this, managed to get a goodly percentage of the open source mavens in one place eating all the same food under a huge tree in my back yard which might blow down one day. You can tell I'm in security because I wondered if it was a good idea to have so many really talented people in the one spot at one time.

I missed skud not coming, but we had a good time nonetheless. Skud sounded crap on voicemail, so it was probably better that she tried to recover before flying anywhere. Flying with a cold is like torture; I hate it with a vengenace. I've just got over a really nasty bout of flu, and I think I might have passed it along to Skud and Ang, my flatmate's girlfriend, who now has a sore throat.

We had fun getting our guests working on WaveLAN as Linux seemed real finicky about ad-hoc mode. FreeBSD didn't have any problems and Greg Lehey got it working shortly after powering up. Luckily, Tridge had his Apple basestation with him, and that made the Linux guys work fine. Dan wired up his 8 port 10/100 MB switch, daisy chaining off my identical switch. Very geek-studly today.

Managed to keep up with Raph, and showed him pnm2ppa actually working on my Alpha, something I hadn't seen for a while. Talked to him about Ghostscript features PPA printers (and all inkjets) need. We agreed that further talking on this issue is necessary. I'm going to try and import the ppa portion of the driver into GS 7.0 as a dynamically loaded module, but due to the worse CMYK and dithering algorithms in GS, the output will be worse than pnm2ppa does at the moment.

The bizarre moment du jour pour moi is watching Alan Cox playing SSX (snowboarding game) on Mr Playstation 2. Folks, Alan is a human, and a nice one at that. :-)

Last note for the Australians: we didn't run out of beer, and we didn't run out of food. I qualify this BBQ as a success. :-)


Having a ball. Finally met a few people who I had e-mailed over the years, and someone whom I respect believed I was a Linux guru. A little bit wrong on that one. :-)

Finally met Alan and Telsa. Unbelievably nice people. It must be frustrating going to places where everyone sorta worships you, knows your name, but you have no clue what their name or their stuff is.

My talk on adding software engineering to the open source mix went reasonably well, and tonight's Mom&Pop(tm) talk by maddog backed my views on world domination to the hilt. I'm so glad that one of the grey beards of our community is saying these things to the young 'uns, for they so desperately need to hear the message, and I feel that I didn't really get the message through.

Rusty Russell is one of the best speakers I've ever heard, and I'm not just saying that because I am now in the cult of Rusty. If you have a conference and need a keynote, bribe or kidnap Rusty. IMNSHO, his is the best talk so far.

Tonight's dinner was excellent for the company and the auction at the end. maddog won the first round bidding war on a t-shirt that all the speakers had signed, and then he immediately gave it back to be re-auctioned. Extraordinarily generous! :-)


Went to the QT/Embedded talk. Bulb went off. Immediately wanted to design secret project for NetBSD, but couldn't cos I was the next speaker. Later that afternoon, did brain dump to my friend Luke.

Jeff Dike has patches to try and make User Mode Linux work on NT. I've just core'd patch several times under cygwin. Apparently, once the patching has completed, it barfs and needs much attention to complete the port.

I met Raph (the guy who made this place, cool dude), and he and I are going to have an e-mail conversation very soon about GS 7.0 print drivers for ink jets. So is maddog so I can get him via LI to pump HP once more for PPA info.

Too much to do, not enough hours in a day.

the blue pill or the red pill?

Have a cold. It's the middle of quite a balmy summer. This is wrong. I have pills that help suppress all but the most determined coughs and sniffles. But the question remains, which color to take?

lca: drinking update #1

Only a few of the fresh victims^W^Winternational speakers have arrived, and already we Australians are drinking too much, saying "strewth", or "oath" for no apparent reason.

I didn't take an evil picture of Sarah (caution 460 kb image). She promised much pain if I did. If I had known she was there tonight, I would have bought her present for my indescretion the last time I took the last shocker.


Xfree86 has made it onto another platform today with Simon finishing the merge of my set of patches of his original patches to XFree86 4.0.2 + some stuff that needed animal sacrifice and a waning moon to achieve. NetBSD-current and 1.5.1 will now have XFree86 on the Alpha platform. Still more work needed, but it's nice. :-)


Just got back from a midnight drive to the Great Ocean Road and back, mostly to charge my mobile phone, partially to see my friend Margaret for the last time and partially as a method of politely disentangling myself from a set of friends I had been with all day*.

It was exhilerating to see all the lightening strike the earth in a huge panorama through the car windows and sunroof, great big rolling strikes everywhere followed almost immediately by crashing thunder. It was dark and light at the same time. Fun.

I've had a great few days, seeing most of my Melbourne based friends and plenty of films. It's my last day today before driving back to Sydney on Saturday.


Most disturbing film: Dancer in the dark. Extraordinary.

Most entertaining film: Meet the parents. Which isn't saying much. Where's the fine art of fart jokes gone? The single pathetic dream sequence in the Klumps doesn't count.

Film I enjoyed the most: O Brother, Where art thou? I thought George Clooney to be a lightweight doctor-wannabe. This film changed my mind, and not just because he was in a Coen brothers film.

hackery of a different kind

In a few hours, I'm off to the doc to see if any of my moles (the dark things, sorta like big freckles) need hacking out of my body. The downside of being Australian with fair skin.


* I am on a tight schedule. I'm not getting rid of them, I just have many friends who don't see me often, and I needed to see Margaret as she doesn't see me all that often.

1 Jan 2001 (updated 1 Jan 2001 at 15:30 UTC) »

It's great not using computers for days at a time. I've managed to log on and check my mail so irregularly, that it's started to annoy some of my friends who seem to expect near instant response.

house cleaning

I've archived 140 MB of e-mail from the last six months and cleaned out all my folders. Then to top it off, I defragmented my hard drive.

I'm sure you're all impressed with that.

new year's

Had a great time at lukem and his wife Inger's last night. Got totally wasted on evil "champagne cocktails", which, okay, involved sparkling white wine but also involved vodka and cranberry juice, and a later more evil one involved alcholic raspberry cassis. This inebriation saw me trying to make Inger the world's smallest G&T, as she gave me a shot glass. It dawned upon us both that she wanted a shot of gin to add to the tonic, not a 30 ml G&T.

Domain Chandon, the Australian outpost of Moet and Chandon produce excellent sparkling white wines. I've been a fan since going there for vintage in 1995 or 1996 (memory's a bit fuzzy :-). They have excellent tours and have great grounds for a little picnic or staying in their buildings for totally hedonistic afternoons. Bring a designated driver.

These last two days, I bought and helped drink three bottles of their 1997 Vintage, and quite frankly for $AUD26.95 (about $US13) it was damn close to the 1993 Moet and Chandon which set me back $80 (about $US40) we had for dinner tonight with my family. If you're ever in this part of the world, you owe it to yourself to get some and savor it. Excellent, and even better if not pissed.

26 Dec 2000 (updated 26 Dec 2000 at 14:45 UTC) »
schoen: HHGTG

Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, in Java.

Enjoy poetry only works in certain places.


I think my mum is losing it. People shouldn't retire unless they have something to do.

Not good.


Paper is being worked upon. Very late, 6 pages and counting, and I still don't like it.


My cats are both outside and being fed by various people. I wonder what my little furry ones will think of me when I get back.


I've been affected by insomnia since my uni days (about 12 years now). I need about 3-4 hours sleep every night and I feel crap when I manage this amount. Mostly I sleep 4-6 hours most nights, getting to sleep around 2 or 3 am and arising at 8 for 8.30 am. I'm doing this cycle as I type, and haven't had more than 5 hours of sleep per day since Saturday (it's now Wednesday morning).

Occasionally, I sleep 10+ hours when my body can't take it anymore. This is usually on the weekends, but recently I slept in for the first time in a very long time on a work day. I got up at 10.45 am, and went directly to the Christmas party. Not good.

That wasn't the first time that I thought of getting some drugs to manage sleep, but bugger that. I've tried all the tricks: various alcohol "nightcaps", exercise before bed, chamomile tea, setting the alarm for 5.30 am (through to 7 am), going to bed only when I am tired, getting out of it as soon as I wake. You name it - if it didn't involve prescription drugs, I've done it. Getting up as soon as I arise for the first time (if you have cats, you know that the little buggers love to wake about anywhere from 4 am til 6 am and nudge you or put a paw on your nose or crawl under the bedsheets; to me that wake up nudge is not a real wake up) doesn't work either - I just end up being real tired the entire day through.

After turning 30, I decided to forget all about the sleep issue. I don't really miss that extra 2-3 hours, and I get to read a whole lot more, I usually recuperate on the weekends. I'll manage.

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