Thursday, July 31, 2003

Quick update

For those who are wondering, our A/C was fixed Monday afternoon, and by the time Amy returned from Nashville that evening, the house was down to 80 degrees for the first time since Friday! I'm hoping Amy will have time to post some photos and write a paragraph or two about her trip soon.

Sunday, July 27, 2003

Heat Wave

Well, here I sit on a sofa at my father's house in Southlake, using a laptop with a wireless connection to his network, hoping my server at home does not melt before I save this entry. Just to spice things up, my two dogs are running around the house with his four trying to figure out who is going to be the boss.

What's that, you say? Why would my server melt? Well, it all started when I sent Amy off to Nashville on Wednesday to see several friends.

Thursday, July 24, 2003

Administrative Woes

A quick apology to all visitors who had trouble accessing this site (or the several others I host) today for a variety of reasons. This afternoon, my pipe to the outside world (a.k.a. the internet) was severed and stayed down for several hours. My provider seemed to be under the impression that I was imagining things, and was in no hurry to fix it, despite the fact that my telephone service operates on the same pipe, and was quite unmistakably dead!

After that, I decided to do some nice, easy, routine (is it getting ominous yet?) maintenance on the server. The tough stuff (upgrading the kernel) went just fine, but somehow I ended up "upgrading" to a package containing an Apache binary that would not stay alive for more than a few seconds. That and the fact that all CGI scripts were rendered inoperable made things a bit tricky. That took another hour just now to straighten out, and I apologize for the inconvenience. A patron (and family member) of the site called me to see if I was asleep at the wheel (my words, not his), but he happened to catch me 5 minutes before it was all back in one piece.

No further maintenance is scheduled in the near future! Then again, I wasn't planning to do this tonight...

Thursday, July 17, 2003

Knobby Knees

Early Wednesday morning, some friends of ours welcomed in a new addition to their family. Amy got up at 12:30am to go see the new addition, and we went back the next evening and took a few photos. Weighing in at approximately 80 lbs. and measuring, oh, maybe 48 inches long (at a guess)...

Wednesday, July 9, 2003

A Reason not to go for a Ph.D.

This article is just scary. Scary that our government could step in and classify information gleaned from unclassified sources. Scary that companies would want to squelch the knowledge rather than act on it. Scary that we're so scared of terrorists we consider taking this knowledge out of the public realm...

Read the article: Dissertation could be security threat

Tuesday, July 1, 2003

Mr. Laptop goes camping

Some noise, er, news is being made recently regarding an announcement by NEC regarding a fuel cell which uses methanol to power laptops. Using this fuel, laptops will be able to run up to 10 times as long as with conventional batteries, and instead of plugging it in to recharge, you can refill the cell and keep on trucking. So with a wireless connection, for example, I could sit in a hammock in my front yard and work from home all day without worrying about cords!

While this sounds really neat, my first thought actually was that no airline on the planet would allow a fuel cell with a flammable liquid in it on board, thus severely limiting the usefulness and slowing adoption. Apparently, however, the Department of Transportation has addressed this and has signed off on at least some variants of this technology because the concentration of methanol (in water) is low enough to not cause concern. Now the chief problem may be that it allows people to take their laptops camping and other places their families may wish they could not...

A day late…

The other night I caught a snippet of something on CNN that made me curious. It sounded like some organization was going to place limits on the hours worked by medical residents. I can already hear the cries of "What? How can they do that? How will hospitals survive without cheap slave-like labor?"