1. Neologism: Rotten egg dependency

    08 April 2019

    rotten egg dependency - noun phrase -  A service that a mission-critical application relies upon that nobody knows about but brings everything to a screaming halt when something happens to it.  In a sane world, said dependency should have nothing at all to do with the thing that just crashed.  Called this because it's as pleasant a surprise as a rotten easter egg at breakfast.  Best explicated by the following haiku:

    It's not DNS
    There's no way it's DNS
    It was DNS

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  2. Linux on the Dell XPS 15 Touch (9570)

    05 March 2019

    UPDATED: 18 March 2019 - External display adapters that actually work with this model (and Arch Linux) added.

    For various reasons, I found that I had a need to upgrade Windbringer's hardware very recently.  This might be the first time that a catastrophic failure of some kind was not involved, so it's kind of a weird feeling to have two laptops side by side, one in process and one to do research as snags cropped up.  This time around I bought a Dell XPS 15 Touch (9570) - I was expecting things to be substantially the same, but this did not seem …

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  3. Concert photos: Curse Mackey, the Bellwether Syndicate, and Clan of Xymox

    27 February 2019

    There are few better ways to kick off the holiday season than with a good concert.  2018 was no exception in this regard - the DNA Lounge brought in a trio of goth heavy hitters spanning the last 40 years in.  The night was opened by Curse Mackey, who seems to have worked with just about everyone on just about everything from Thrill Kill Kult to Pigface.  Second up was a relatively new group called the Bellwether Syndicate (whose work I've grown quite fond of since that show), comprised of William Faith (best known for being one of the founders of …

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  4. Organizing a data hoard with YaCy.

    13 February 2019

    It should come as little surprise to anyone out there that I have a bit of a problem with hoarding data.  Books, music, and of course files of all kinds that I download and read or use in a project for something.  Legal briefs, research papers (arXiv is the bane of my existence), stuff people ask me to review, the odd Humble Bundle... So much so that a scant few years ago I rebuilt Leandra to better handle the volume of data in my library.  However, it's taken me this long to both figure out and get around to making …

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  5. Sometimes the old ways may be best.

    04 February 2019

    A couple of weeks back, I found myself in a discussion with a couple of friends about searching on the Internet and how easy it is to get caught up in a filter bubble and not realize it.  To put not too fine a point on it, because the big search engines (Google, Bing, and so forth) profile users individually and tailor search results to analyses of their search histories (and other personal data they have access to), it's very easy to forget that there are other things out there that you don't know about for the simple reason that …

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  6. A friendly introduction to the Fediverse.

    14 January 2019

    If you've been kicking around on the Net for the past year or so, you've probably come across a thinkpiece or two about Mastodon, an open source social network that's kind of like Twitter, kind of like Facebook, and kind of like... well, nobody's really sure what else would fit there.  It's a bit of a wildcard.  That seems to throw a lot of people, and because this is the Internet we're talking about that means a lot of "this could never possibly work" posts, nevermind a busy network of several thousand instances and several hundred thousand users doing everything …

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