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Category: the odes

10/09/10 08:20 - 53.ºF - ID#52920

Danbo

The Japanese have the weirdest obsession with crazy new toy concepts.

Meet Danbos.
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Look at the quality of these boxes! Makes Amazon.co.jp that much cooler.
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-- Photos belong to Randy Santa-Ana
-- What in the world is a Danbo?
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Permalink: Danbo.html
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Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 10/09/10 08:20


Category: the odes

10/07/10 09:25 - 57.ºF - ID#52915

Crows on Linwood

A murder of crows is shrouding Linwood right now. image
They are cawing up a frenzy. They have been fluttering around since the afternoon. I wonder if one of the baby crows has fallen out of a nest or if someone has died on the street.


1. Photo from
2. American Crows have a fascinating natural history

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Permalink: Crows_on_Linwood.html
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Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 10/07/10 09:35


Category: the odes

10/05/10 09:55 - 47.ºF - ID#52904

Baking is sub-cellular alchemy.

Didn't you know?

My building management wants me
to freeze to death.
Can't feel my toes or
the tip of my nose.
My fingers are turning
a lethal shade of whitish-purple.

No. That's not Deep Purple or you know, Annie Lennox. It's just that weird fifth floor tenant in that corner building up the street from (e:PMT) - croaking to the tune of Die Another day. So in celebration of not being frozen already, I just read this on the fresh loaf:

I decided to revive my dormant Carl Griffith's 1847 Oregon Trail starter last week, so I had a lot of nice ripe starter by the end of the week on hand that I wanted to use up. I used an excel spreadsheet I made up for Flo's 1-2-3 sourdough to use up any amount of excess ripe sourdough starter, except in this case, I needed to increase the hydration since I was using all whole wheat flour in the final dough, so it became 1-2.25-3 bread (78% hydration final dough). The reason I made this as 90% whole wheat is simply because the excess starter I had was made up of about 25% whole wheat and 75% AP, so even though the final dough is all whole wheat, there is about 10% AP in the overall formula due to the large amount of starter



That is just so very confusing on so many levels. I am going to try and decipher all of this patiently. So Griffith made some kind of a sourdough starter from the yeast he collected from the Oregon trail? Back in 1847? And in 2010, exposure to these mutant yeast made thefreshloaf bloke use Excel for quantum calculations. He has an alter-ego Flo, who is learning to count at the kindergarten - obviously a Frog, by the sound of it. That much is crystal clear, thank you.

That's it. The rest of it is quite clearly in *that* cryptographic code taken from the most superficial crater on Jupiter's 10th moon. I think my fingers are too purple for wikipedia.

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Permalink: Baking_is_sub_cellular_alchemy_.html
Words: 342
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 10/05/10 10:08


Category: the odes

10/04/10 06:38 - 47.ºF - ID#52897

Dilli heartbroken.

Dilli (better known as Delhi to most) literally means the "City of Hearts". But I doubt if any hearts are beating there this week after months of harassment of the ordinary Dilliwala. Endless construction, trench digging, random curfews, road blockades, military deployment on the streets and the obscene hubris and corruption of a parade of filthy, mean-minded, grubby and sadistically-selfish politicians have managed to wreck the spirit and soul of Dilli - something that centuries of British oppression couldn't even come near to doing.

The government, in its infinite wisdom, has poured more than $7.5 billion into staging this absolutely loathsome spectacle called the Commonwealth Games. And now it wonders why the average Dilliwala isn't buying the overpriced tickets to any of the games after paying out the entire $7.5 billion in super-inflated taxes.

So. $7.5 billion. $7.5 billion!!! Mind boggling. Corruption at various levels of politics made it possible for the venal government to pay out insane amounts of money like the $200 for each roll of toilet paper at the game venues and the $130 for each umbrella over empty seats in the sunlight. The list of excesses goes on till it makes a reasonable person nauseous - well, maybe not the person who actually paid the 40 cents for the TP and pocketed the rest of the $199.60.

This very same government refused to fund family planning and health services for Dilli because it argued that $5/person was clearly too astronomical an amount for something so trivial as healthcare.

I am heartbroken along with the millions in Dilli who are now wondering if they belong in the city at all. It is time for a revolution - rather like the ones the Frogs pulled off. But the question is does anyone have a heart and guts to bell the evil little political monster in Dilli anymore?
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Permalink: Dilli_heartbroken_.html
Words: 301
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 08/13/12 04:28


Category: i-tech

10/02/10 04:38 - 52.ºF - ID#52880

Mainframe Office with Drupal-like content management

Ever since my discussion with (e:Paul), I have been thinking about the whole data-security issue at RPCI. The monitor and input-devices only desks make so much sense, really. In organizations that deal with secure and sensitive data, there is really no place for personal workstation-processors. Additionally, having personal processors for everyone adds to operating and maintenance costs unnecessarily.

We not only get new computers, but also new monitors and new keyboards and new mice every 3-4 years or so. WHY on earth do we need to buy everything again and again and renew stuff that could easily be avoided for at least a decade? All that really needs to be renewed is the computing power for newer resource-hungry software. Can't this easily be done at a mainframe-common server level? After all, it will be a one-time investment for many employees - not a many-time investment for all the employees over and over. RPCI really needs to rethink it's IT strategy and look at this absolute waste of resources it's incurring all the time.

I recently read a lot about Drupal. The usefulness of a modular, dynamic Drupal-like system in a mainframe office would be immense. Content that employees would need to work with could be served dynamically on their monitors, depending on who has the verified credentials and pre-assigned rights/clearance (determined by who logs in at that terminal). And of course, when your work is done, you can't store stuff in your USBs or local storage - where they might easily get stolen or lost. As an added advantage, not having processors and hard-drives at every desk would also save energy and operating costs.

Health data is protected data. It's time we treated it in the same way as other professional organizations such as government secret services treat their files in their offices.


PS: This is an article on how we went from a centralized big computer to many small computers. I think that it makes sense, especially where data security is concerned, to move back to the centralized serving, more powerful computing model. Personal computers have no place in a work environment.

PPS: I am not doing justice to the magnitude of advantages of such a system. A few immediate and key advantages could be:
- Cost saving (in many ways; avoiding not only repeated costs for buying unnecessary peripherals, but also maintenance costs and energy costs)
- Energy saving
- Tougher and more efficiently administered data security
- Tidier offices and more deskspace

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Last Modified: 10/02/10 04:47


Category: art

10/01/10 08:48 - 52.ºF - ID#52869

Coolest spies on the planet

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Too bad they blew both of them up to smithereens.
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I think I was more than a little in love with Ros.
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I will admit that that I was secretly hoping that she would somehow cheat death a second time.
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What did they say in The X-Files way-back-when....
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Everything dies.

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Even the strongest and the most awesome female lead to ever grace the small screen.
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Ros Myers, will there ever be another like you?
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Permalink: Coolest_spies_on_the_planet.html
Words: 89
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 10/01/10 10:23


Category: {dodo}

10/01/10 12:25 - 59.ºF - ID#52865

Good Luck, Rahm Emmanuel!

So, farewell then, Rahm Emmanuel,
No more, lighting the White House fuel,
Spent this past weekend in DC's hot spell
Didn't realize it was your last, as well

image

Keith's mum, who is quite taken with you
Tells me you have the whole of Chicago to woo
I have also heard that it's pretty windy
So, no more worries about politics of Rawalpindi?


NB: {Pardon me, my dear17.5 year old. }

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Permalink: Good_Luck_Rahm_Emmanuel_.html
Words: 80
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 10/01/10 12:29


Category: i-tech

09/21/10 10:33 - 63.ºF - ID#52796

Fedora: Fine but frustrating

"Are you quite sure that you feel what you ought to do?"
-- Pride and Prejudice, 1797

I am not. But I am determined to stick with Fedora 13. Only, it is so frustrating that I seem to be struggling with the simplest of things.

The minimal installation was so minimal, it forgot to ask me for a login and password preference and then when it finished, it wanted me to use a non-existent login and password to login to the OS. Needless to say, I had to start with the bloated "Graphic desktop" installation all over again and though, I was presented with customization choices, I couldn't really customize anything because I had no idea what any of the packages actually did! And anyway.. why is it that I need a login every time I power it on?! I can't seem to get past this. I hate having to log in to my own computer. I want the boot up to be faster.

I keep trying to install chrome and it says chrome installation had "finished" but I can't see it anywhere. And I hate that trackpad mouse tap behaviour only loads when the operating system loads completely. Before this happens you need to click that annoying trackpad button.

I knew it wasn't going to be easy, but I just thought this might be easier than the other zillion times I have tried.

Arrrrrggh.

But I am not giving up. I am starting on a book called "Introducing Fedora: Desktop Linux" today. 400+ pages later, if I am still struggling, maybe I will revisit Austen's predictable tome.
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Permalink: Fedora_Fine_but_frustrating.html
Words: 265
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 09/21/10 10:45


Category: i-tech

09/20/10 05:47 - 65.ºF - ID#52790

Drupal: Hooks, blocks, modules and nodes

I spent quite a chunk of time reading about it. I am hooked. I have to wonder about the people who actually designed all of this - they must have some of the most logical and organized minds around. It took my puny brain quite a while to understand how content management in Drupal actually works.
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But it was tough to figure it out initially. Maybe this is how computer scientists must feel when they are asked to understand and write about a cell-culture or mouse knock-out experiment.

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Permalink: Drupal_Hooks_blocks_modules_and_nodes.html
Words: 90
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 09/20/10 05:52


Category: the odes

09/18/10 11:18 - 65.ºF - ID#52781

The weekday consequences of a bald spot.

I have an almost bald patch from my most recent haircut. And no, I didn't do it myself. It's terribly amusing and I can't help laughing at how absolutely abysmal my head looks now.

I resemble him closely.
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I guess I am going to repent all this laughing on Monday when people shoot me looks of embarrassment and try and feel bad for me. I will reciprocally try and look appropriately apologetic for having inflicted the bald spot on them.

But my evil twin will want to respond like this...
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Permalink: The_weekday_consequences_of_a_bald_spot_.html
Words: 94
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 09/18/10 11:18


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