Oh jeez

May 16, 2008

I can’t believe it took me this long to realize that “Lojack” is the opposite of “Hijack”. Wow.

In other news, Linux (specifically, Ubuntu (specifically, Hardy Heron)) is dead to me, and I officially no longer have any interest in running it on my desktop. Not worth the hassle. I’ve had to recover my MBR and reconfigure GRUB far too many times in the past couple of days. GRUB errors 17, 15 and 13 were bad enough, but error 5 (“Partition table invalid or corrupt: This error is returned if the sanity checks on the integrity of the partition table fail. This is a bad sign.“) was the last straw.

Oh for fuck’s sake

October 6, 2005

Re: Bush lashes out at ‘Islamo-fascism’.

Islamo-fascism, eh? Looks like nothing has changed in the past 61 years: “…as used, the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless.” I guess convenient bugaboos, bogeymen, and catchphrases never really go out of style. And since they’re meaningless to begin with, you can combine them however you want! Like calling religious fanatics both “Fascists” and “Communists”, both of which terms generally apply to political and economic systems — and dissimilar ones at that.

I guess it’s refreshing, though, to see “Communist” as a slur come back into vogue.


The militants believe that controlling one country will rally the Muslim masses, enabling them to overthrow all moderate governments in the region and establish a radical Islamic empire that spans from Spain to Indonesia.

Whereas the President seems to believe that forcing one country into “democratic” hands will rally the Muslim masses, enabling them to overthrow all clerical governments in the region and establish a hotbed of democracy that spans etc. Go go gadget domino theory, let’s keep those pinkos out of Cambodia Syria! Does everything have to be so goddamn black and white? Do we really assume that a change in government in one country in a region must necessarily lead to the same change occurring in every adjacent country?

We are facing a radical ideology with immeasurable objectives to enslave whole nations and intimidate the world.

How do you go from calling some objectives immeasurable to describing how they can be measured later in the same sentence? (Hint: measure their objectives by counting “Islamo-commie-fascistically-enslaved” countries, why don’t you.) Don’t words have meanings anymore?

…self-defeating pessimism…

I guess not. Mr Bush: You meant to say “self-fulfilling”. Self-fulfilling. Self-defeating pessimism would be pessimism that leads to the defeat of pessimism, which I don’t think is what you had in mind.

…I’m going to stop here. Sorry for the rant. But it’s not like anybody read it anyway.

In other news, I remain irked by Ubuntu’s decision against mp3, decss, etc; it’s hard to jump through the hoops to get all that stuff installed on a system when you don’t have any internet connectivity to speak of on it. manpages are certainly helpful for some things (like your fstabs and whatnot), but not only are they hilariously dense, they’re no help at all for Ubuntu-specific things (all but the barest-bones of documentation for which are online) or GNOME (ditto). All I wanted to do was watch my Futurama DVDs and listen to my vast collection of legally-obtained mp3s under linux, but without the interweb on that computer it’ll prove quite difficult.

However, I haven’t gotten ANY sound playback to work on that system yet so maybe I’m getting ahead of myself.

Song of the Moment: «Lupita» — Panico

Ubuntu: Brief Note

July 4, 2005

Those Ubuntu people are as good as their word when they say “The Ubuntu team will send you Ubuntu CDs at no charge, for you to install and share. We will cover the cost of shipping the CDs to you as well.”

Today I went to the post office to pick up a package I was absolutely not expecting, and only when I opened it did I suddenly remember drunkenly requesting 10 x86-architecture Ubuntu CDs.

What the hell am I going to do with these now, I wonder — I suppose I should probably give them away to people.

Oh, and happy 16 Messidor to all of you.

Song of the Moment: «It’s Tricky» — Run-DMC

Ubuntu: First Impressions

May 17, 2005

I’m posting this entry with the “LiveCD” feature of Ubuntu Linux. Why? Because I was bored, because I’ve been meaning to play with Linux for a long time, and because there’s recently been a lot of noise about Ubuntu, calling it a decidedly non-threatening distro.

I’m booting from a CD instead of installing to my hard drive for a variety of reasons. I’m not yet sure, for instance, whether I really feel like risking all of the data on my hard drive by fucking around with partitions and the like. The last time I tried “non-destructively resizing” a partition with a lot of data on it (for the purposes of installing Linux on a Windows box, of course), the program I used decided to instead render the partition completely unintelligible to Windows. I was able to recover most of the data that I really wanted, but only through a rather lengthy and unpleasant process that involved turning a spare computer I happened to have lying around into a [Linux-powered] network file server I could extract files to from the damaged partition.

It was certainly interesting to learn how to get a computer up on a network and writable through Samba, but I the whole experience was kind of souring, what with the whole massive-data-loss aspect. What didn’t help either was the fact that the catastrophe at hand was quite clearly my own damn fault.

Lessons learned:

  • Don’t try to repartition your hard drive without a damn good reason
  • Don’t try to repartition your hard drive without a damn good backup
  • Yes, that means you!

Anyway, even if I felt like tempting the fates again, I couldn’t at the moment, since I only have 1 free gig of room on my laptop, on a drive that’s fragmented to hell. So I’m running a version of Linux that doesn’t require any installation; I just popped in the CD and rebooted, and after making a few selections with regard to language, screen resolution, keyboard layout, and timezone I was up and running.

Well, mostly. I’m quite impressed with the default look, and how it managed to seamlessly detect my internet connection (Ethernet, that is — I haven’t tried out WiFi yet). The default behavior of my touchpad leaves something to be desired, though. While I can move the pointer around the screen, left-click, and right-click, I can’t use any of the other functions like fancy scrolling or special ‘hotkey’ areas or whatever. I’m assured, though, that enabling this stuff is just a matter of modifying some configuration files in my /etc/X11 directory and then restarting the X server. I can live with that. I’m not exactly sure how I go about doing that when I’m running from a ramdrive, so I’ll make do with rudimentary mouse controls for the time being.

This, though, was a little bit weirder:
Note the two different times being displayed
I can’t for the life of me figure out why the time is being displayed correctly on one screen but three hours early on the taskbar or whatever the hell they’re calling that bar here.

Anyway, I’m off to try mounting my Windows drive so I can listen to some mp3s.

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