November 2003 Archives



And so it ends.

Far too much flying, far too much driving, far too much getting-up-early. But fun nonetheless.

I've decided that I need to update the Family Football page - Owen hasn't updated lately, and I suspect with the two little ones he hasn't got the time.

This was one of the largest turnouts we've had (41, I think?) despite a few notable absences.

Red Alert


I want a new toy.

I want an application that launches automatically at startup and then just sits there, waiting for something interesting to happen. When something happens, I want it to tell me; if something's important and I'm not at my computer, I want it to SMS my cell phone.

How do I define 'something interesting'? Email from my parents... major news events... catastrophic hardware failure... The list goes on. But the notification method should reflect the importance of the event - a new post on slashdot should be an unobtrusive green sphere on my screen, while a terrorist attack should fill the screen, beep, and buzz my phone.

There are things that are kind-a like this already, such as iPulse or the Ambient Orb, but nothing exactly like what I want. iPulse will always show up on your desktop, even when everything's going fine, and it doesn't watch the world outside. The Orb can never grab your attention the way I'd like.

Basically, I just want to put a bunch of assert statements on the nature of reality. Seems like a useful thing to do.

In Which Our Hero Writes


Oftentimes while I'm walking, or driving, or even showering, I'll be mentally composing things to post here. They always sound so great while I'm doing it, and I don't doubt that further reflection would yield an appraisal of at least 'good'. The problem is that these brilliant ramblings somehow evaporate from my mind the moment I'm within arm's reach of some way to transcribe them.

I'm left wondering if perhaps brilliance is an inherently transient phenomenon, if the only reason I'm having these thoughts is that there's no way to record them. Perhaps everyone is granted occasional flashes of insight, only to lose them an instant later. Maybe genius is simply the ability to recall these epiphanies at a later date.

Probably not.

See what I mean? The moment I start typing, I'm a moron.

XHTML Graffiti


I made my page uglier.


Six Degrees of Randall Flagg


Introducing what may well be the world's dorkiest game: Six Degrees of Randall Flagg. Though I doubt there are more than a handful of human beings who could actually play this game at a speed remotely resembling real-time, I find it amusing. I plan on creating a list of difficult or amusing solutions just as soon as I get around to it.

Gratuitous Hill House


Still more CSS tweaking - now I can easily quote text and code, and it really looks quite pretty:

"No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream. Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood so for eighty years and might stand for eighty more. Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors were sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone."

Pretty nice, eh? I'm proud of it.

Anyhoo... I think that bit about reality is dead on. I need to find some creative outlets before my head explodes... burying myself in the mythos of the Dark Tower helps, but it's really not a long-term solution.

Stream Of


Office. Monday. Three-thirty-ish.

Sean. Sitting. Laptop on lap. Hot. Wintel. Figures.

AC loud. Why? Dunno. Always like that. Bugs me.

Eyes drooping. Figures. Little sleep. New Stephen King. New Dark Tower. New town, new Roland, new Breaker. Same old Flagg, same old Crimson King. Same old Father Callahan?

Wonder if Flagg/Faraday/Fannin were created? Born? Hatched? Maybe started out human?

Think Fanan's first name in Robert. Sounds right. Robert Fanan.

Total coincidence that this was Pop's name. Must be. Just fitting the pattern. Not too many other names starting with 'R'.

The fact that I question my sanity only proves I'm sane.
The fact that I question my sanity only proves I'm sane.
The fact that I question my sanity only proves I'm sane.

Still, all work, no play, not TV, no beer.

Something, something.

I want to go home, and that is the truth.

It's All Greek To Me


Ares seem to be working again.

Ares being, of course, the server hosting this site. I always name all my machines (hey, it beats memorizing IP addresses) and I try to keep a theme going. Sometimes I take it a bit too far, I suspect. I've got Ares running the webserver. My main machine is Thanatos, with an internal ATA RAID-1 for storing my multimedia by the name of Clio. My nifty phone, which I love like a brother, shows up in iSync as Terpsichore. My iPod is named Iris (not iRis, though that would be funny), and my iTunes library shows up as Euterpe to other folks on the network.

This trend started way-back in IntelligentStorageLand, of course, with Prometheus, Hephaistos, and the oft-threatened-but-never-written Sisyphus. For those joining the party late, Prometheus was (is!) used at the factory to create FireWire hard disks, Hephaistos was built to help in developing nifty new FireWire hard disks, and Sisyphus would have been a burn-in program - something that continually wrote data to a disk forever, never really accomplishing anything.

The six people sufficiently versed in Greek mythology to understand all that and find it entertaining are cracking up right now, I know it.

Testing, Testing...


Just installed Panther on the server. And swapped the hard disk.

I'm still not sure what was causing those problems, but hopefully this will fix them.

Also cleaned up the configuration. Hosting subdomains shouldn't be quite so bad of a hack, now. I hope.