1. Just like your friends, don't abandon your boxen, either.

    25 September 2008

    A basic maxim of information security is that when someone has physical access to a machine, all bets are off. If someone can touch a box, they can do pretty much whatever they want to it: if the console is unlocked they can poke around at whatever the access privileges of the logged in account will allow (how many of you configure your screensavers to require a password to turn off? how many of you walk away without logging out?), and possibly copy data to a removable storage device, such as a USB key. An intruder can also power the …

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  2. I'm not dead, I'm just at incap!

    22 September 2008

    The trip that Lyssa and I took to Pittsburgh this weekend to finalize wedding preparations has all but wiped me out. Between all the driving, not sleeping a whole lot lately, and possibly getting some bad Chinese food while in the old neighborhood, I'm clinging to life and consciousness with the nails of all twenty digits. I'll post when I can walk around without weaving as if I'm drunk and when my stomach and I are on speaking terms once again.

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  3. Saloncon 2008: Adventure! Excitement! Romance! Sleep deprivation!

    16 September 2008

    I didn't get a whole lot of sleep last Thursday night due to getting ready for Saloncon 2008 and general problems getting a decent amount of rest these days. I think that part of it's the unusually high pollen count in the DC area right now and part of it's the air conditioning filter in the apartment (which Lyssa is having fixed today due to the fact that we can't get into the locked room in which the air conditioner is installed). Also, wedding stress is starting to mount with the end more than an month away. At any rate …

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  4. Interesting times at HacDC.

    11 September 2008

    Sorry for another late post, everyone - between work, wedding stuff, and trying to keep from falling ill, I've had a lot on my plate lately.

    On Tuesday night, after coming home and having dinner, I ran a couple of last-minute errands for Lyssa and then set course once again for Washington, DC proper for the weekly HacDC administrative meeting. While I'm technically not a member because I haven't started paying dues yet, I've been doing a lot of hands-on electronics work at the site, more specifically my steampunk sonic screwdriver. Most of what I've been doing lately has been repairing …

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  5. Better late than never: the weekend in review.

    10 September 2008

    While we didn't get hit by Hurricane Hannah, the DC metroplex certainly felt her wrath late Friday and all day Saturday. I don't want to say that it was raining cats and dogs but not long after waking up on Saturday morning I saw a squadron of squirrels wearing what appeared to be miniature SWAT gear high-tailing it through rain blowing at a forty-five degree angle toward a nondescript white van in the parking lot. Unfortunately, they've moved back in and are busily digging in the coffee and aloe vera plants on the balcony, Lyssa tells me.

    I've had a …

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  6. Fear, uncertaintly, and doubt: Voter registration shenanagains at Virginia Tech.

    08 September 2008

    During the last presidential election, numerous dirty tricks were played in the weeks and months prior to votes being cast by anyone, such as absentee balllots not making it into the mail, voters being forced to wait so long that they couldn't cast their votes (because they had families to take care of or work to attend to), and unusual investigations were carried out that scared away potential voters. Many voters were wrongfully turned away at the polls in some areas. If what happened at Virginia Tech not too long ago is any indication, the political black ops are just …

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  7. An old friend deployed by the Red Cross, and a humble request.

    06 September 2008

    I've been trying to figure out how to write this post. I've tried the poetic way, the emotional way, and a few other tactics that just don't seem to work, so I'm going to go with the honest way:

    An old friend of mine, Dee Mikula, is shipping out soon. She isn't in the military, but works as an EMT in Seattle and is registered with the Red Cross as a first responder in disaster situations. In 2004, she worked in central Florida during hurricane season, and on Tuesday, the ninth of September she's flying down to the Gulf to …

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  8. Firefox plug-ins I have known and loved.

    04 September 2008

    It's been said that the killer app that made the Net as ubiquitous as it is today is the web browser, with e-mail running a close second. Just about everyone uses a browser in some capacity or another to access news, information, and e-mail, possibly moreso than dedicated applications (such as e-mail readers, RSS readers, or database searching applications). As great as they are, web browsers have their own unique sets of problems and vulnerabilities that have to be taken into account, especially if privacy is of concern to you.

    Firefox, in my considered opinion, is an excellent web browser …

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