Featured, Sundry

Week of 7 February, 2010

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/02/15/week-of-7-february-2010/

Sunday, February 7

The Moscow Underground – An Outward Glance — A collection of photographs provide a “behind the scenes” look at the Moscow subway system. I call it “train porn.”

I attended Tom’s Superbowl party. I ate and drank a lot, and socialized a fair amount. I also ran into an old Tellme colleague who, as it turns out, is from the same home town as Mei. It was also cool when that one guy in the tight shiny gold pants caught the ball and weaved his way through the guys in blue and made it to the far end of the field. Also, it was nice that New Orleans found a reason to party, while residents of Indianapolis can stay indoors, their huddled masses yearning to be warm.

Monday, February 8

Human Biological Clock

I ran up to Manhattan to fetch my new work laptop from the local sales office. I hung out a little while to configure Windows on the corporate network, noted that the display is of a lower specification than my regular laptop, and brought it home to keep around as a backup unit, in case my beloved regular laptop should fail.

I made dinner: scrambled eggs with cherry tomatoes and frozen veggies, dropped Mei off at work for her last night shift of the week, did the laundry, and folded it while watching the prison-based British Romantic Comedy, Greenfingers. Not a bad day.

1.5h Greenfingers

Tuesday, February 9

In the afternoon I was notified that my Wednesday flight was cancelled, presumably due to weather. I was able to get on a non-cancelled flight four hours later, in an exit row.

Pushups: 40

Wednesday, February 10

Mei was wary of driving me to the airport in the snow, and wiped out from an early day at the hospital, so I hopped the train out to JFK, where most flights had been cancelled, so it was kind of a ghost town, and I had the place to myself. It reminded me of catching a night flight out of Queen Alia Airport in Jordan. It was nice to see the plane was waiting for us, even if it was covered in snow. We waited on the plane for 2.5 hours as the de-iced, and the captain apologized that it took a long time because the plane had been sitting out, in the blizzard, overnight. There were further complications plowing the taxiway and finding appropriate ground equipment that could tow us out in the snow. Finally, we were ready to take off, except one of the sensors was frozen, so we headed back for further de-icing. We took to the air three hours late, and landed in Las Vegas 1.5 hours late, and really we were all impressed and grateful that the plane left the ground at all in the weather, and got us to the other side of the country safely. After we touched down in the desert, an uncharacteristic applause rippled among the passengers, although not quite the confidently routine applause delivered by passengers on Royal Jordanian.

Pushups: 40

Thursday, February 11

Rob picked me up at McCarran International around 0100 and drove West into the California desert. We hadn’t seen each other in a good long while, and we caught up on each other’s lives, and work considerations. Given my delay, he had had plenty of time to nap. I had caught some sleep in my comfortable exit row seat myself, but I caught some more sleep in his passenger seat and although the whole point of my flying to Vegas was to share the driving, he powered through the whole way, noting that Red Bull brought his attention back along the way.

We arrived in Mountain View with an hour to spare, and camped out at Dana Street Roasting Company, my-favorite-cafe-ever, then walked down to the team lunch scheduled at Amici’s as a going away party for my manager. (Thus my reason for flying to California.) There was a huge turnout and it was great to see every one. Since I had served large parties in a pizza restaurant before I took a little initiative to order several large parties on the behalf of our table.

Afterwards I rode back to see the new office our team had moved to. It wasn’t as bad as I had pictured. At least the cubicles aren’t gray and the light rail stops right next to the building, so if I return to the Bay Area and find housing near the light rail, I could be content. I spent the afternoon catching up with coworkers, then rode the light rail back to Mountain View to have dinner with college friends.

I shacked up with another friend, Todd, in Sunnyvale. Todd recently moved to Utah, but he was able to host me at his friend’s house in Sunnyvale, as he happens to be visiting his own corporate headquarters this week as well. He said that he likes Utah, in part because on Sunday he gets the place to himself. He’ll ride the light rail into Salt Lake City and exchange knowing glances with the other non-Mormons, taking advantage of the Sabbath to shop without crowds.

Friday, February 12

Todd dropped me at the office where I spent the bulk of the day in “face time” with coworkers. We wandered to a nearby building where we were invited to an afternoon party, which featured cupcakes and karaoke. At the end of the day many of us headed up to a separate party where we spent many hours eating, drinking and I even smoked a cigar. The best part was just the opportunity to hang out with several of my coworkers, and meet some family members, since many of the people on my team really dig each other, more so than some other places that I have worked.

I saw a lot of my favorite friends this weekend. This trip was well worth it.

During the evening party, I received a notification that my 9am flight had been cancelled. I borrowed the host’s terminal and landed a window seat on soon-to-be-completely-full 6:15am flight.

Saturday, February 13

Around 3am, the party was breaking up, and I was dropped off at the airport. I caught some sleep among the others dozing in the arrival and check-in area. At 3:45am the automated kiosks began processing check-ins and at 4:00am the TSA began to allow us through the metal detectors. The flight ran a little late as they dealt with the overbooking situation. I wedged myself into the over-the-wing window seat, and managed to sleep a fair amount, making sure to stay awake when the flight attendants passed so I could have some water to moisten my parched throat.

Mei picked me up at the airport, drove me home, and let me nap after my shower. She had wanted to cook for me but come evening, she took me to Katz’s famous delicatessen on the lower East Side. I hadn’t especially wanted to even get out of bed but Katz’s sure hit the spot. I had a few bites of Mei’s kugel, which was a perfect fried food, then I ate my own matzo ball soup, half a corned beef sandwich, cream soda, and on impulse, asked the waiter for steak fries that came in a huge delicious pile on a little plate. “You ate like three potatoes.”

We slept well that night.

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Tracking the Value of Automation

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/02/20/tracking-the-value-of-automation/

Cfengine is an tool used by Systems Administrators to automate the configuration and management of multiple systems. I have mixed feelings about cfengine because it strikes me as overly complex, and there are alternative tools available, but the basic idea of automating systems administration is sound.

Of course, it can take a lot of effort to automate processes, and it takes effort to bring in an automation framework like cfengine to facilitate automation. (Like I said, cfengine is complicated.) Is it worthwhile? More importantly, how do you convince management?

This bit of cfengine propaganda about a new cfengine feature got me thinking:

The value_kept, value_repaired, value_notkept settings fall under cfengine transaction logging and allow administrators to attach actual monetary (or other) values to promises kept, or issues repaired, or conversely measure the loss of non-compliance in dollar terms (choose your currency). This value is summed and recorded for each execution of Cfengine, and can be turned into graphs for your management reports.

“If you combine this with system performance data, and other reports from Cfengine, you begin to build up a pretty compelling case for IT services value. Hopefully this will give skilled system administrators the leverage they need to advance in the view of the more removed managerial levels, guarding the purse strings,” says Mark Burgess, author and company founder of Cfengine.

This is a clever idea, and one that strengthens the case for getting staff to record the time required to complete trouble tickets: if it takes two days of effort to automate a five-minute process then you “break even” on the investment after the process is run 320 times.

More importantly, these cfengine bits are focussed on “business value” . . . a given process may mean five minutes of effort to a SysAdmin, but it may mean a great deal to the user depending on that process. Putting a business value on a process can be tricky to do, but if you figure that a five minute procedure is blocking an engineer from getting work done, and it takes, on average, an hour for the request to be fulfilled, then the business value of automating the process pays off after 16 runs. (More or less, depending on the “value” of the users’ time versus the “value” of the usually-Senior SysAdmin doing the automation.)

Anyway, to the extent that you can put a value on any given process, you can record the value of the expensive process of automation, and help prioritize automation efforts. The greater “return on investment” can be shown for task automation, the greater your case to management for investing time and resources into automation. (Or, it is easier to identify and explain those things not worth automating. A difficult-to-automate one-hour process with low business value that runs once a month may very clearly not be worth the effort.)

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Movies, Sundry

Week of 14 February, 2010

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/02/22/week-of-14-february-2010/

Sunday, February 14

I got up before Mei-Lin to, among other things, make her breakfast. She let me nap afterwards as she, among other things, baked me an apple pie. I dropped her off at work in the evening for what was otherwise a really nice romantic holiday together.

1.5h Daily Show
0.5h John Oliver’s New York Stand-Up

Monday, February 15

The orthodontist is keen to finish my oral infrastructure project before two years has elapsed. He mentioned a desire to change my lower band, but that for my comfort he would wait until next time. I said I could go for it. He babbled with glee, “okay, if you insist I torture you . . . but if it hurts you forget you know me,” and then rambled on about what material the band was made of and how that had a memory so it wasn’t so bad, and words like anterior and other stuff that means he’s a huge orthodontics geek. I can’t tell half the stuff he’s saying but he says it with a sort of joy that makes me trust him, because I too, know the joy of impassioned geekery.

After driving Mei to work in the evening I took some Aleve. This is the second time this guy has adjusted my teeth and I feel it afterward where I didn’t feel it with the prior orthodontist. Since he’s a geeky man I just assume he is pushing my comfort zone to yield results, whereas the nice lady in San Francisco wanted to help me avoid discomfort.

0.25h Aqua Teen Hunger Force
1.75h Inch’Allah Dimanche
1h Colbert Report

Tuesday, February 16

Mei gave me a toy train set today. It is a juvenile thrill even if I can’t figure out a good home for it.

Pushups: 35 + 35
Situps: 100

1.75h Reprise
1h Dirty Jobs
1h Star Trek: The Next Generation

Wednesday, February 17

I have a modest pile of unused credit cards stashed away in case I ever develop a coke habit. And since I doubt coke dealers take plastic, when I say “develop a coke habit” I mean “fund my own Internet startup-up.”

0.5h Colbert Report
1.75h Sophie Scholl: The Final Days
0.25h Aqua Teen Hunger Force

Thursday, February 18

So, LIVE Squirrelcam is occasionally entertaining but I may try to make it better. Right now one would have to tune in while I am broadcasting, and while the squirrels are doing their thing. There’s maybe ten minutes a day, really, of footage, and its in low res.

If I am silly enough to run a computer with some decent horsepower . . . not 24/7 but say during daylight hours, I’m thinking I could have the computer take a series of 30 second clips, over and over, and then we analyse those clips for squirrel activity. The analysis is the part I don’t know how to do, but I figure I can extract, say, a series of frames, and I’m pretty sure mogrify can give me the “diff” of two images, and if I can evaluate the quantity of that diff, then I know something is going on.

Splice together contiguous 30-second clips of “squirrel detected” footage and upload in hi def to YouTube.

The sup has also been talking about installing these giant, prison-like bars on the windows, “but you can open them.” Anyway, a more permanent fixture outdoors where the squirrels can look cute for the Internet without worrying about the guy inside typing away menacingly at the keyboard might be where I end up.

If I don’t just lose interest first.

After an unusually rough day at work, I watched “Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress” which was a nice enough film set during the Cultural Revolution, but in the last 40 minutes they skipped to the modern day and revealed the village was to be flooded for the Three Gorges project. Sappy sentimentality over unrequited love backed by plaintive violin music, this soft-skinned bourgeois intellectual found himself teary-eyed. It also reminded me of another movie I recently watched about the Three Gorges, “Up The Yangtze” so the idea of an ambitious young girl making her way in the world, in that case, literally up the Yangtze, was fresh in my mind.

1.75h Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress

Pushups: 30

Friday, February 19

Peddling a bike down a city street is much like paddling a canoe down a river: Watch out for the current if you don’t want to flip or crash!

Rode my bicycle over to the Post Office, then stopped by the bike store to put air in the tires. (They have a hose out front.)

Pushups: 32 + 40

Saturday, February 20

Slept in, rode down to the Tea Lounge for breakfast, then two laps around Prospect Park. The weather was nice but there was a vicious head wind on the uphill part. Took Mei-Lin out for dinner but it was late and she was too exhausted to really appreciate it.

1h Mega Movers: Locomotives

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Movies, Sundry

Week of 21 February, 2010

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/03/01/week-of-21-february-2010/

Sunday, February 21

Three laps around Prospect Park with a weaker headwind on the uphill, then I stopped for groceries and fit two gallons of milk into the bicycle basket, which made steering sluggish. Afterwards I watched “Letters from Iwo Jima” which was really neat because it tells a story from World War II in which the viewer’s empathy is given to the enemy.

2.75h Letters from Iwo Jima

Monday, February 22

Maker’s Schedule, Manager’s Schedule — Insight into why engineers dislike meetings, and the cultural difference between “makers” and managers regarding meetings.

Pushups: 40

Tuesday, February 23

I kept waking up through the night, which is unusual for me. There is a fair amount of tension at work and other open questions in my life, so I am thinking the subconscious is unusually bothered right now. I woke up dreaming that I was at a party gorging on a smorgasbord of delicious, sweet, and colorful home-made baked goods. I have had these sorts of dreams lately: on another occasion we were at some legendary restaurant and after the feast of dinner I was eager for dessert, but I woke up before dessert.

At any rate, flex hours are a blessing for productivity: if someone has a rough night they can sleep in a bit and just get a late start, rather than taking a sick day. But throughout the morning I felt hung over.

In the evening I made it to my fisrt NYC Yelp event: tacos at The Loading Dock. I made two new acquaintances while enjoying some tasty tacos and free beer. Unfortunately, Mei couldn’t make it.

Wednesday, February 24

I “shipped” a nice feature for our systems management software at work, which will make it easier to request server reboots and other services from our data centers. I then set about coordinating how to deploy the feature. In the evening I did laundry, and watched TV while folding.

Pushups: 35 + 40 + 25

1h Daily Show
1h Colbert Report

Friday, February 26

Due to the snow storm, we didn’t go out as we might have, ordering in some food instead.

Saturday, February 27

After brunch, we spent some time at the Library, but then hustled home so Mei could get in touch with her family as we watched the would-be tsunami roll into Hawaii. Later in the evening we went to see “Invictus” which is an uplifting retelling of how Nelson Mandela won the Rugby World Cup, with a little help from Matt Damon. Afterwards, we stumbled upon a French Bistro type place, where Mei had tartar, I had sausages and beers, we both had dessert, and together we enjoyed a badly needed night out.

2.25h Invictus

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News and Reaction, Politics, Testimonials

Government Subsidized Food Pyramid

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/03/05/government-subsidized-food-pyramid/

I posted a link which has a wonderful graphic illustrating the discrepancy between what the government recommends that we eat, and what the government subsidizes. This opened up the question as to whether government interference in the free market was a good idea, so I offered my understanding and opinion:

Michael Pollan explains the situation well in “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” . . . because agriculture yield and prices are highly volatile, it is desirable to balance out the wilder potentially-devastating-to-farmers price fluctuations. Historically the Department of Agriculture did this by buying crops when prices were low and storing them for sale when prices were high.

During the Nixon administration there was a shortage of affordable meat, so the government moved to a flat subsidy of certain crops to maximize food production. It worked, but today we are dealing with the unintended consequences.

I think it is good for the government to regulate food safety and to provide food stamps for poor people. I suspect that with the contemporary globalized food system that price stabilization is a lost cause, and less of a concern, because the overall market is larger.

I do like the “soda tax” idea.

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Featured, Language, Technology

Use of “as per” Exploding in Silicon Valley?

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/03/09/use-of-as-per-exploding-in-silicon-valley/

So, I occasionally get anxious when I perceive some trend in word usage, especially when it seems like hyper-correction. I swear that in the past few years everyone replaced “social” with “societal” and in the past few months I swear that everyone (that I correspond with) has started saying “as per” instead of . . . say, “per” . . . for example:

“I did the job per your instructions.”


“I did the job, as you instructed.”

Has lately become:

“I did the job, as per your instructions.”

I just saw a work e-mail where someone used “as per” in two consecutive sentences and I said “there has to be a way to track this.”

And there is a way. A very crude way: Google Trends.

I wasn’t able to find anything at first: “as per” is dwarfed by “as” and “per” but I confined my search to the past 12 months, then the United States . . . then . . . California:

1. San Jose, CA, USA
2. Sacramento, CA, USA
3. San Francisco, CA, USA
4. Pleasanton, CA, USA
5. San Diego, CA, USA
6. Irvine, CA, USA
7. Los Angeles, CA, USA
8. Milpitas, CA, USA

It is probably just a statistical blip for an incomplete corpus but at least for the moment I feel a little better to see some data demonstrating a measured spike in usage of “as per” in the Silicon Valley . . . I might not be as crazy as I suspect.

Is “as per” bad usage? It certainly annoys me. Some technical writers are grappling with the issue, and it sounds as if English craftspeople prefer to avoid using this weirdly redundant mish-mash of Germanic-Latin.

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About Me, Biography, Testimonials

My Surname

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/03/24/holmgren-howard-2/

On the radio they are talking about the Census and taking calls from people on the topic: “What my name means to me.”

My surname is Howard, but if my grandfathers had followed convention my surname would be Holmgren. Back in the day the man who carried my Y chromosome married a woman whose surname was Howard, and he took her name for his own to avoid discrimination against dumb Swedes.

I have sometimes wondered about changing the name back to Holmgren, but it hardly seems worth the effort. There is no widespread anti-Swedish prejudice to stand up against in solidarity, and I have no special allegiance to patriarchy.

It seems that most Howards I meet are African American. I doubt they took that surname by marrying English. As best I can guess, their ancestors took their surname, as Howard University did, from Major General Oliver Howard, who fought in the Civil War, and later promoted the welfare of former slaves and war refugees as Commissioner of the Freedmen’s Bureau.

Perhaps there is even a little solidarity to be had in retaining a surname chosen by people who, to this very day, face discrimination.

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Featured, Free Style

The End of Dollar Bills

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/01/where-dollars-go-to-die/

If we stopped printing one dollar bills, it would stimulate consumer spending as we came to think of anything under $5 as “change”.

One group that might really benefit are strippers: you really can’t stuff a Sacajawewa into a g-string: $5 would become the new standard for tipping. But if that is too steep for the clientele the house could offer change in old one and two dollar bills, which are offered to the dancers, who sell them back to the house. Imagine small bills forever consigned to circulate around the groins of a low-end strip club.

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Featured, Free Style

Mex Express

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/02/mex-express/

I took the Mex Express to La Guardia. Truth in naming, it was Mex and Express. The minivan was comfortable. I noted the crack across the bottom windshield, and the whistle on the highway confirming the computer’s report that the lift gate was ajar.

The driver said he had lived in Fresno for a few years, picking grapes. He has done all sorts of work over the years: fields, restaurants, construction. He likes anything that pays American money, and has been driving for the car service for five years. His family has lived in Brooklyn on Avenue C for many years, paying less then $900 for a large two bedroom apartment. He likes his neighborhood but now too many white people are moving in.

He has two sons, American born. They understand Spanish, but they speak in English. He says they’re good kids, and their teachers love them, but he worries that in Junior Highschool they may be exposed to bad influences. He says he warns them every day to be careful to make good friends and to avoid drugs. There is a third child on the way.

Some years back he drank too much but that has changed. He loves to work. You see people, they speak good English, standing on the streets, asking for a dollar, fifty cents, five cents? “That is no way to make money.” He showed his sons that on a hot day you get some bottled water and sell it at red lights. It is always better to work.

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Featured, Sundry

Flying Jumbo

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/05/flying-jumbo/

I have long legs and long arms and I love to look out the window when I fly. Whenever possible, I check the seat map for an upcoming flight to jockey for the best place to sit. Instead of printing my boarding pass the night before I will wait until I am at the airport and hit a self-service kiosk and check again for a good seat. I use seatguru.com to help assess the quality of various bulkhead and exit row seats.

Sometimes I fly Southwest Airlines, which doesn’t assign seats, so I will try to print my boarding pass as early as possible (24 hours before your first flight segment) so that I can board early and homefully score an exit row. When I can not board early or if the exit rows are taken, I may go for the bulkhead row. No tray tables but plenty of leg room, and you get off the plane quickly: best “middle seat” there is!

Unfortunately, a lot of people think it is “clever” to store stuff in the forward overhead bins, where I have to stash my bag when I am sitting in the front row. So, I drop my coat or my hat on my new seat and head back several rows to stow my bag. The danger here is that when we get off the plane I have to wait until the aisle is clear to swim upstream to fetch my bag. So, sometime before landing I sneak back, fetch my bag, and stash it safely beneath my knees. As we get near landing time, I drape my jacket over my knees and tuck my hands in to this “blanket” allowing the flight attendants to check the cabin without noticing my “un-stowed” bag. Once the plane lands I am one of the first on my way!

Recently I secured a bulkhead window seat in the same row as a gentleman sitting in the aisle seat, and some of the middle seat. I figured he’s a good guy to share a row with because people prefer not to sit wedged in next to a fat guy. Better yet, there was a card in the middle seat saying the seat was “reserved” . . . a reserved seat on Southwest?

The man explained that Southwest has an excellent policy for people of his stature. When he travels, he purchases two seats: one for Tim and another for Timothy. When he gets to the airport they exchange one of the tickets for a “reserved” placard and then let him pre-board. He boards the plane first, takes his bulkhead seat, lifts the armrest, places the “reserved seat” sign in the middle seat, then stretches his legs and watches everyone board. The best part is that unless the plane sells out, Southwest then refunds him the cost of the second seat! “Its as close to ‘first class’ as you can get, and even if I pay double its still cheaper than first class on another airline.”

I like the elegance and fairness of the solution: there’s no slippery slope of aspiring “fatties” trying to claim extra room from the airline’s profit margin, and the airline isn’t extorting extra revenue to accommodate oversize folk; A “reasonable accomodation” is achieved! For me, the bonus is having a mostly-empty middle seat to compensate for the missing tray table.

It reminded me of travelling with my sweetheart. If we sit together I can borrow extra room from her and she can snuggle against me. “Yeah, my wife is all of 125 lbs.” “Ha! My girlfriend is 4’11.” “Funny how that works out.” “Yup. I figure the kids will come out average.”

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About Me, Featured, News and Reaction, Sundry, Technical, Technology, Testimonials

Why I Am Deleting my Facebook Account

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/05/so-long-facebook/

You remember how everyone was on Friendster? And then, Friendster was too slow, and everyone lost interest?

Then we were all on Orkut? But it turned out the guy just stole the code from somewhere else and it got boring pretty quickly, too.

Then there was Tribe.net, but I never signed up for that.

Then there was MySpace, and suddenly you could pretty much do anything with your profile, hook in doo-dads and gewgaws and blinky backgrounds? Well, I dipped my toes in that trainwreck but yeah . . . old news.

And then Facebook came along, which only stole the idea from someone else, and not the actual code. It was fast and scaleable like Orkut, and it had applications and stuff so you could have the flexibility of MySpace but within a controlled environment. Boy that thing took off!! But, Facebook was still missing a critical ingredient: you can not trust them.

So, I figured I would get ahead of the curve on this one. They keep revising their rules and re-jiggering things to make it harder and harder for people to keep their information private. Eventually enough people are going to be spooked at that. I tried to re-re-re-re-review my privacy options and look at taking out most of my profile information but they made it enough of a pain in the ass. Eventually I used Google to find the option where you can just delete your account, which, in true Facebook style, takes two weeks. Anyway, in another week and a half, I will have vanished.

If I change my mind someday I can sign up all over again. Despite the hooplah, though, I think there is a very good chance that lots of folks will move on in the near future. Either some kind of open-standard, or maybe a comparable platform run by a company that regards trustworthiness as a central ethic. (Speaking of which, you can stalk me on Google.)

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Linux, Technical

Ubuntu: Re-install All Packages

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/05/ubuntu-reinstall-all-packages/

After some transient disk issues I was stuck with an Ubuntu VMWare image that was brain dead. I figured I would give the install CD a chance to fix but the Ubuntu install CD doesn’t have a fix-it option. (Really?!) Since the issue was somewhere in how Gnome and X were configured, I launched an xterm session and managed this command:

dpkg --get-selections \* | awk '{print $1}' | xargs -l1 aptitude reinstall

What that does is get a list of all packages installed on a system, then invoke “reinstall” for each package. It took a few hours to run.

The Ubuntu forums had a recipe using some more straightforward Debian incantation, but that didn’t work for me.


Featured, Technology, Testimonials

Celsius: Where Metric Fails

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/06/celsius-where-metric-fails/

I love Metric, but I think for human purposes, Fahrenheit is more useful, and actually closer to the convenience of metric:

0: water freezes
100: water boils

0: colder than Denmark
100: warmer than human blood

If I want to boil and freeze water: hell yeah, Celsius. But if I want to know how hot or cold it is outside, explain it to me in terms I can understand!

(Originally a comment on the Big Fat Blog)

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About Me, Featured, Technical, Technology

Password Management

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/10/password-manager-solution/

To a discussion as to preferred password manager solutions, I added the following:

I developed a simple algorithm I use to generate passwords using my brain. I have changed this algorithm a little a few times. At the most basic level, something like this would be you like to use the password “frog” . . . but then add the first two letters of the web site name: Yahoo -> frogya, Google -> froggo.

The benefits of this “password manager” are that as long as your brain functions appropriately, you will always have platform-independent access to your passwords. If any given password is compromised it is non-obvious to an attacker what your other passwords are.

The main drawback to this password manager is that different password policies are mutually exclusive: one site requires a special character, another site prohibits special characters.

I use a different algorithm for more complex passwords for important stuff like ssh keys and unix logins.

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Trending Topic

Link: https://dannyman.toldme.com/2010/05/13/how-do-i-delete-my-facebook-account/

Trending topic: "How do I delete my Facebook account?"

Of course, Google wouldn’t be spotting a trend for this search item if you didn’t have to use Google to figure out how to delete your Facebook account. CNN credits Danny Sullivan for noting this trend.

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