This is a text-heavy weekend, given yesterday’s post.  Enjoy!

Your unrelated link of the week: ScummVM in a browser.  Comes with some LucasArts game demos, too. (via many places)

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

## PRISM, privacy, and what you make yourself

If you’ve been reading the Digest for a while, you’ve seen me talk about the value of hosting or running your own services.  It’s not too much of a surprise in my case; if you are working on an open-source operating system, you want to run it.  It’s good to get the experience, and you can run programs the way you want, instead of picking from whatever vendors happen to sell you.

The PRISM disclosure, which I am going to assume everyone is familiar with at this point, is another facet.  Every time you use another company for your email, your entertainment, your software, and so on, their information on you can be accessed.    This isn’t a problem that can be fixed by going from one webmail provider to another.  You can shop around, but notice that the author in that link effectively throws his or her hands in the air and says, “there’s no way out” by the end of the article.  This is because corporations work as collecting agents for the government, even if they don’t plan to do so.

That sounds drastic, but there’s legal frameworks in every country for governments to require companies to give up data on any person, on request.  It happens.  I’ve seen it myself; I worked for Time Warner for several years, tracking down cable modem user information and handing it over as compelled by law.  I know the lawyers at TW Corporate didn’t like doing it, but they didn’t have a choice.  (I have some horrifying stories about what people would do to themselves and each other.)

Companies are increasingly working to create services to sell, not products to buy.  A service never stops being consumed, so it forms an ongoing revenue stream.  I’m not saying this is bad; I firmly believe that a financial incentive to be paid improves services.  However, as only a consumer, you can end up not owning what you use.  Other people have pointed this out, and I don’t want to sound like a frothing crazy person… but it is relevant, though not necessarily as catastrophic as some people pronounce.

What I’m working towards here is a reminder that you should run your own software, and running it on DragonFly is the best way.  (Or some other operating system, I guess.  If you have to.)  Instead of trying to figure out what the least-bad commercial option can be, run it yourself.  Good for privacy, good for learning.  I know that’s not an option for everyone; fighting with Sendmail (for instance) is not an activity that many people pick voluntarily.  But, if you’ve been thinking of setting up a replacement for Google Reader, or hosting your own mail, or own blog, etc… there’s never a better time than now.

Not as wordy this week, but still wordy.  And linky!

• Max Headroom and the Strange World of Pseudo-CGI. A discussion of how old fake CGI can look better than modern, real CGI. This is an opinion I’ve had for quite a while, and my children pretty much ignore it every time I bring it up.  (via)
• The Colby Walkmac, which predates the Mac Luggable.  Linked to because it includes good pictures of what the (external) hardware was like.  I find all the old ports interesting, since it’s all USB and the occasional eSATA these days… not that I’m complaining!  I’ve never had a good experience with a 9-pin serial port.  (via)
• A brief education on escaping characters.
• I get worried when remotely rebooting a server in a different town or even state.  In Praise of Celestial Mechanics covers much more stressful circumstances: interplanetary reboots.  Does Voyager 1 or 2 have an ‘uptime’ function?
• The equivalent of what you are doing right now, 20 years ago.  I personally never got to see this; my experience was MUDs.  Speaking of which…
• The Birth of MMOs: World of Warcraft’s debt to MUD.  MUD == MMO, Roguelike == Diablo/Torchlight, Doom == almost everything else.  There’s a number of game archetypes that haven’t changed in some time.  (via)
• Playing with powerlines.  I used to work at a company that used these lines for data transfer.  It was neat technology, but it sure wasn’t easy to set up.  Imagine wiring a city but only being able to use Ethernet hubs.  Not switches, hubs.  That, combined with undersized ARP caches/MAC tables, made it really difficult.
• OpenVPN on FreeBSD, which will come in handy for at least several readers, I’m sure, as the directions should apply to any BSD.
• Is there anything DNS can’t be used for?  Cause now it’s domain-based mail policy publishing.  (via ferz on EFNet #dragonflybsd)
• Have you tried DragonFly?” posts on various forums seem to pop up with some regularity.
• Uses of tmux, explained.  A slide show talking about how tmux works.  (via)

Unrelated link of the week: I’ve had several deadlines and a mail server with issues this week at work, so this is all I got.

Last week was a lot of very brief links.  I’ll go for verbosity this week…

• Regular expressions and regular grammar.  I hope you like detailed explanations.  I’ve said it before: you should understand regular expressions.  The difference between knowing and not knowing is sometimes the difference between knowing how to finish a project, and being hopelessly swamped.  (via)
• A plea for less (XML) configuration files.  From the same place.  I don’t advocate rejecting XML files out of hand like some people, but I think you need to have a certain existing level of complexity already in your program before you use XML.  For example, so complex that nobody will notice some XML sprinkled in there too.
• Where Looks Don’t Matter and Only the Best Writers Get Laid, a talk about the Internet from roughly the late 90s to the 2000s.  Some parts of this get farther into political notes than I usually care to read, but I like the point made with “Many women and men alike are using, not building, the web.”  I am frustrated by how the Internet is effectively one-way transmission for so many, like TV.  (via I forget, sorry)
• Bringing Unix commands to a Windows world.  It’s about Cygwin.  I’ve installed Cygwin a number of times, but it’s such a strange hybrid I eventually stop after using it for whatever specific reason caused the first install.  These days, it’s almost easier to set up a virtual machine on a Windows system and just switch over as needed.
• The Weird Stuff Warehouse.  How much does this look like your basement?  I like looking in stores like there cause there’s always some hardware item that seems to be worth resurrecting.  (via)
• Open Source Game Clones.  I feel iffy about these things.  This tends to be viewed as “I want a free game”, not “I want the right to modify a game”.  Also, you could argue it takes revenue away from the original artists who work on a product when it copies the original game methodology, reducing the incentive to produce.  That could be debated, but I am certain of this: I wish people tried original rather than rehashed ideas in open source, because it has a much lower threshold for success.   You don’t need a studio to tell you when you can be published…  which is sort of the idea behind “indie gaming“, I suppose.  (first link via)
• Remember those old not-a-desktop-not-a-laptop computers?  They looked like this image I saw recently.  I actually learned to use vi in a mild panic on a Sparcstation Voyager, which would be another device in that land between categories.
• SSH Tricks, found by accident while I was searching for how to do per-host configs in ssh, so that I only had to type a short name and leave off the long suffix (like dragonflybsd.org) when connecting to a server.  Someday I might even get remote port forwarding over ssh correct.
• USSR’s old domain name attracts criminals.  Somehow I doubt you can identify a criminal site by domain suffix that easily.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the week: Massive Chalice, a Kickstarter for a new strategy and tactics game.  It’s by Double Fine, who has made some fantastic stuff, and it has permadeath, turn-based combat, randomly generated maps… it’s a roguelike!  It’s cross-platform, apparently, though I don’t know if it will work on any BSDs.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, roguelike, UNIXish

A really packed week, this week.

Posted by     Categories: Books, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Tom Gauld, a U.K. artist who makes some very entertaining minimal cartoons (recently published), has the best inspirational poster.

I’m inexplicably short on links this week; I blame my schedule/the nice weather for much for much of the U.S./the class I’m teaching ending/my trip to TCAF for this.  More Lazy Reading next week!  Meanwhile, I have a book review coming up as an alternative.

Lots of links, not a lot of commentary, this week.  Enjoy!

Your unrelated link of the week: Baman Piderman.  It’s a series of Youtube videos.  Just… roll with it.

These are getting denser and denser with links, in part because I’m looking harder and in part because Hacker News is becoming a better and better source of links; there seems to be a new go-to site for tech links every 8-12 months.  Slashdot, then Digg, then Reddit, then Hacker News…

•  Intel has published a HTML5 development environment.  I don’t even know if it would work on DragonFly or even any BSD, but I feel efforts to make tools that are actually, genuinely, crossplatform should be looked at.  Defensive platform-specific content seems to still be a thing.
• Slightly related: Building a Roguelike in Javascript.  There’s several parts to this.  (via)
• The Eternal Mainframe.  The argument is a little wild-eyed, but the underlying thesis: “Cloud == Mainframe” is valid.  (via)
• A Primer on IPv4, IPv6, and Transition.  I signed up for an IPv6 tunnel recently, but I’m not directing traffic over it.  I should be.  (via)
• How to make Your Open Source Project Really Awesome.  The title is linkbaity, but the steps listed are correct.  You will look at the “If you want to completely screw your users…” notes and nod to yourself, recognizing something that bit you.  (via)
• There’s still Apple ][ software being sold.  I vaguely feel like I bought from there before…  (via)
• Everything’s being put into a git repo these days.  (via)  Wait, spoke too soon.  (thanks, ‘bla’ in comments)
• Scaling Pinterest.  I like seeing what technology is used as a site transitions from “oh yeah, running on leftover hardware in my basement” to “we need to hire yet another person to keep this all running”.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the week: Sometimes, repeated variations on a single theme can lead to some entertaining humor.  Therefore, Dog Snack.

(Did I just sneak in two unrelated links?  Yes I did.)

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, roguelike

I think spring has arrived; everything’s turning green, and a young man’s thoughts turn to computer hardware upgrades.  Time to move to 64-bit!  Anyway, lots of links this week.  These are getting more and more content-filled over time, but I don’t think anyone minds…

• For the Bitcoin enthusasts: ‘…when my wife refuses to bring him cake on our sofa, he calls it a “denial-of-service attack”’ (via)
• Make It So, coverage of computer interfaces from movies.  I always thought that was what Enlightenment was trying to achieve: the Interface From The Future.  (via several places)
• Same computer interface topic, but from anime movies.  It would be nice if this became something people actively worked on, instead of Bitcoin selling and Facebook monetizing.  (via)
• Flat icons/monochromatic icons seem to be another microtrend.  This is probably because few people do small dimensional icons well.  My favorite was always the BeOS set.
• On benchmarks.  It says what you should already know, but I like the Phoronix/MD5 benchmarking joke.  (via EFNet #dragonflybsd)
• This article titled “The Meme Hustler” draws a finer line than I’ve seen before between “open source” and “free software”.    The author, Evgeny Morozov, seems to also have a hate-on for Tim O’Reilly.  See some reviews of a recent Morozov book for a counterpoint, of sorts.
• Spacewar championship, 1972, in Rolling Stone.  Exactly two years before I was born!   At this point, finding things older than me makes me a bit happy.  There’s a picture of a Dynabook in there, photographed by Annie Liebowitz.  It’s entertaining to read this 40-year-old story and see how well it predicts the future.  I’m also sort of amazed it exists, in Rolling Stone.  More Spacewar links here.
• Meet the Web’s Operating System: HTTP.  ”Because HTTP is ultimately the one social contract on the web that, amidst a million other debates over standards, rules, policies, and behavior, we have collectively agreed to trust.”  (via)
• Ancient computers in use today.  I’ve linked to a story about that IBM 402 before,  but the following pages about VAX and Apple ][e systems are new.  Well, new to read, certainly not new hardware.  (via)
• Yahoo Chat!  A Eulogy.  The spray of forbidden words is an entertaining acknowledgement message.  (via)
• The $12 Gongkai Phone. Bunnie Huang breakdowns are always fun, and he’s describing a strange sort of open source that isn’t through license. (via) • The FreeBSD Foundation is looking to hit a million dollars donated this year, which seems quite possible given last year’s performance. Donate if you can; their activities help the whole BSD community. • A Complete History of Breakout. It’s not actually complete, but that’s OK. It includes Steve Jobs being a jerk and Steve Wozniak being very clever, which is their traditional roles. (via) • Ack 2.0 is out. It’s a very useful utility; I’d like to see more standalone utilities created this way. • Space Claw, Flickr via BBS. You’ll need telnet. (via) Your unrelated link of the week: Shady Characters, a typography/history blog I’ve linked to before, has a book out. If you liked those links, you know what to do next. Posted by Categories: BSD, FreeBSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish ## Lazy Reading for 2013/04/14 We are very close to the next release. As always, it comes down to building third-party software. Lots of material here to read, until then. Your unrelated link of the week: A bunch of monster models, all taken at a convention called Monsterpalooza. A bit grody, but still some very good construction work. (via) Posted by Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, roguelike, UNIXish ## Lazy Reading for 2013/04/07 It’s a week past Easter and I’m actually tired of eating chocolate. I never thought I’d say that. Your unrelated link of the week: nothing. I didn’t find anything off-the-wall enough to use here. Geez. Posted by Categories: Lazy Reading, OpenBSD ## Lazy Reading for 2013/03/31 I hope you like reading; there’s some very meaty links this week. Go get a cup of tea and settle in. You drink tea, don’t you? You ought to. • Reading about KDE’s repository near-meltdown makes me think we need more checks for DragonFly. We have the advantage of Hammer, of course, which would help in the same way that the linked article names ZFS as a ‘fix’. (via multiple places) • We know that Apple will reject apps it disagrees with. Google also will do so. Has there ever been a program rejected from pkgsrc or (FreeBSD/OpenBSD) ports on content grounds? Not that I know of – anyone remember differently? I’d argue that’s a favorable point for the BSD packaging systems, though it may just be that no application has tested those boundaries yet. • Portscanning all IPv4 addresses on the planet. Possibly the largest distributed effort ever? The detail in the maps and returned services is especially interesting. (via) • Scale Fail, a Youtube video of a 2011 talk about screwing up your services. Mostly about the humor, but the underlying points are valid. (via #dragonflybsd IRC) • There’s still improvement possible to fsck, apparently based on this. That’s UFS2 fsck. • What is your most productive shortcut with Vim? A very thorough explanation of verbs, marks, and registers. Holy cow, I wish I had known about ‘: … v’ before. It’s long, but worth it. (via) • Matthew Garret’s description of Secure Boot vs. Restricted Boot with UEFI, (via a coworker who went to Libreplanet 2013). I’m still not sure what DragonFly will need to do about this. • I missed mentioning this earlier: 20 years of NetBSD. We’re coming up on 10 soon. • Dragonfly drones. Unrelated except for name. • That guy who starts to froth madly every time BSD is mentioned on Phoronix is still there (see comments). • Mainframe computer supercut. (via) Your unrelated comics link of the week: Tom Spurgeon of the Comics Reporter asked people for their lists of webcomics that could go in a ‘Hall of Fame’. The resulting list is a lot of really, really good material. Go use up a few hours reading. ## Lazy Reading for 2013/03/24 It’s still snowing in my area, which is unusual. And great! Your unrelated comics link of the week: French cartoonist Boulet knocks it out of the park again. Posted by Categories: Lazy Reading, Someday you will need this ## Lazy Reading for 2013/03/17 You know what stinks? I find a really cool thing online somewhere, early in the week, or even in a previous week, like today’s unrelated link. Between me finding it and this always-on-Sunday post, other people encounter it, the link gets reposted everywhere, and it’s old hat by the time you see it here. Yeah, I’m complaining like it’s hipster linking! Your unrelated link of the week: I almost can’t tell this is a parody. Actually, it’s more like a double level of parody. Seen on this inexplicable, wonderful Tumblog; found via arts inscrutable. Bonus link: Dog Snack Episode 3. Posted by Categories: Lazy Reading, roguelike, UNIXish ## Lazy Reading for 2013/03/10 I managed to come up with a lot of links this week, somehow, despite the start of the class I’m teaching in addition to normal work. And Summer of Code’s coming up! And we’re due for a release relatively soon! I may appear somewhat… stretched over the next few weeks. Your unrelated link of the week: I’m the Computer Man. I always thought the mid-1990s were sort of a Internet/computer teenager phase. Everything had potential but everything was also awkward. (via I forget, sorry!) ## Lazy Reading for 2013/03/03 I am all over the place with links this week – some of them pretty far off the path. There’s a lot, too, so enjoy! Your unrelated link of the week: I’ve already been offbeat enough in this Lazy Reading; I don’t have anything else. ## Lazy Reading for 2013/02/24 A calm week, for once. • Via Michael W. Lucas: Absolut OpenBSD. • Another ‘How I customize Vim’ style post. These things always sound great, but I worry that it’s not something that can be duplicated. If you had to rebuild or duplicate your Vim environment elsewhere, you’d have to write out your own instructions. Not impossible, but I don’t have to do that for anything else. (via) • Twine, a game creation tool that really requires only writing. (via) • The Oxford Comma, or how it doesn’t matter. (via) • The Story of the PING Program. I could have sworn I linked to this before. I remember having someone explain ping to me when I was young and had little experience of IP networking; it seemed like magic where the computers would actually talk. (via vsrinivas on EFNet #dragonflybsd) • ARPANet, 1971, as a tattoo. (via) Your unrelated comics link of the week: Reid Fleming, World’s Toughest Milkman. All the early issues, available in electronic form, for pay-what-you-want. (And I advise paying; it’s a fun comic) Look at a sample page if you are curious. Posted by Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish ## Lazy Reading for 2013/02/17 This week I will both post this on the correct day AND get the date in the title correct. Your unrelated tea link of the week: Epic Tea House Server. Interesting just because of what he does and because I’ve never encountered tea from a samovar, though I’ve read of it. (via) Wait, this is better! That previous link led to this film from an English chemistry professor about tea chemistry. At first I was just entertained by his hair and his accent, but when he put tea in a NMR spectrometer, I decided this was the best tea thing ever. Even better than Elemental! Posted by Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, Someday you will need this ## Lazy Reading for 2013/02/10 For once, I didn’t accidentally post this too early. I hope you have some spare time; there’s a lot of meaty links this week. Your unrelated comics link of the week: Anthony Clark of Nedroid.com is selling his sketchbook; 101 pages as a digital download, for$1.  Look at his strip or his Tumblr doodles if you want to know more before, but that’s quite a deal.  Nedroid is the source of one of my favorite character names: Beartato.  Also makes a good shirt.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, roguelike, UNIXish

No theme evolved this week, but that’s OK.

Your unrelated link of the week: MeTube: August sings Carmen ‘Habanera’.  Might be NSFW, probably will make you mildly confused or uncomfortable.  Here’s the ‘making of’ video which is all in German, I think.  If that’s too much, try a recent Cyriak-animated video.  I never thought I’d recommend a Cyriak video as the less disturbing thing to watch.

Posted by     Categories: Books, BSD, Lazy Reading

Whee!

Posted by     Categories: Books, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

Ok, now posting this on the correct day…

Your unrelated comic link of the week: The Game, by Boulet.  Goes with some of the links.

I’m going for the terse list of links.  It’s sort of Neukirchen-ish.

Your unrelated link(s) of the week: Some very good tutorial videos.  Don’t worry, it’s just electrostatic dischargewire safetyfun with capacitors, and how to make a Windows shortcut (via/via)

The last of the year.

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Marlo Meekins’ Tumblr.   Her lettering is refreshingly expressive.  That may sounds strange to single out, but so many people place words as an set block of text rather than as part of a graphic layout.

Posted by     Categories: FreeBSD, Lazy Reading, roguelike, UNIXish

I started this Lazy Reading early, since I had so many links it overflowed into the next week.  Merry almost Christmas!

Your unrelated link of the week: I work at a salt mine.  One of the highlights of my job is when I’m in the mine and need to get somewhere quickly; I use a 4-wheeler to drive.  (I’m licensed to operate it.)  There’s no stop signs, no stoplights, and generally a whole lot of straight roads with no obstacles or traffic.    It can be a fun drive.  However, it’s not as cool as driving on the moon.  (via)

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

I hope you like links, and lots of history.  It’s been a bumper crop this week.

Your unrelated link(s) of the week: Said the Gramophone and The New Shelton Wet/Dry.  The first one’s a music blog, and the second’s more general.  Both have a somewhat random feel with the images used – completely random in the New Shelton’s case.  It’s interesting that there’s such a flood of text and images on the Internet that you can reassemble content out of all of it.  You can’t push over a bookshelf and call it a library, but you can build a whole new narrative from random assembly of Internet data.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

This is a mini-theme Lazy Reading, where I find small groups of related things.

Your unrelated link of the week: The Museum of Ridiculously Interesting Things.  Also known as ‘old weird crap’, but that’s OK – still interesting.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

It’s been a quiet week, but that’s OK.  I have sick kids, sick coworkers, and a certification test this Monday…

Your unrelated link of the week: GET LAMP.  I thought I had linked to it before, but I’m probably thinking of It Is Pitch Dark.  It’s a documentary by Jason Scott of textfiles fame about text adventures.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, roguelike, UNIXish

It’s ‘old week’!

Your unrelated link of the week: Disused Rochester Subway.  I used to work about half a mile from one end of this structure, and have been in several of the locations pictured.  (via)

Apparently this is history week for Lazy Reading.

•  You know what I like about older retail games?  Not the playing, but the paraphernalia that came with it – maps, histories, stories on printed paper.  This Empire for Apple ][ description even has pictures of a hand-drawn timeline.
• Remember when Enlightenment was considered too graphically intensive to run easily?  Now E17 is in alpha!  (via multiple places including here.)
• The regular expression that’s the equivalent of a shrug and a handwave.
• Why BSD is better than Linux” (2002).  It’s an old PDF presentation, but a good history overview.  I got a kick out of slide 40.
• Rob Pike on why object-oriented programming isn’t always awesome.  Slightly related: I wish Google+ pages had RSS feeds.  (via)
• The GPL is usually described as a defense for users against companies.  What if it’s being used as a bludgeon by one company against another?
• Remember in last week’s Lazy Reading, I pointed at complaints about Linuxisms; changes that assumed Linux was the only Unixlike system.  The problem continues even within distributions.  There’s a common thread of the people involved.
• When In Git, different animated gifs set to different git habits and events.  This is the next stage after rage comics.

Your unrelated link of the week: The Useless Web.  Random single-purpose sites, and oddly compelling.  (via)

The 3.2 release seems to have gone well.  Who has tried the new USB support?  I’m curious to see how it’s going.

Your unrelated link of the week: This roundup of ultrarealist human sculpture.  You’ve probably seen Ron Mueck‘s art before, at least.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, Someday you will need this

I’m glad 3.2 is out the door.  I think I spent more time on release notes and watching package builds than any other release.

Your unrelated link of the day: Sir, You Are Being Hunted.  I link to the Kickstarter for this game for no other reason than I think it would be fun to play.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, NetBSD, Periodicals

Life is busy, busy, busy.  But there’s always time for Lazy Reading!

• Sometimes Google searches turn up DragonFly BSD in odd places.
• Wayland reached 1.0.   That’s great, except it isn’t ready for use yet, it’s just feature-stable.  I’d argue that means it’s ‘beta’, not 1.0, but there’s no hard and fast rules about that.  In any case, does it run on any BSD?  I don’t think so.
• OpenSSH server best practices.  Nothing too groundbreaking, but they include “BSD” (i.e. pf) examples.  I always like articles that don’t assume Linux is the only platform.  (via)
• The little SSH that (sometimes) couldn’t.  A heck of a network debugging exercise.  (via mat in #dragonflybsd)
• The AN/FSQ7, a computer I’m sure I’ve seen in movies a number of times.  (via)
• Here’s the OpenBSD slides from EuroBSDCon 2012.
• Oh look, Apple’s got “Fusion Drive“.  The cool people call it swapcache and have been using it for years, so there.
• Here’s an essay that starts out talking about Quantum Computing and moves into the ambivalence that quantum computing seems to entail instead of just noting the general scientific description and leaving it there.  It’s really quite enjoyable.
• Hey, maybe this is why Facebook reported earnings are up: they’re holding your own data hostage.  (via)
• Rob Pike on The Setup.  He makes a very good point about how we should access computers.  Also, here’s a recent, long slide show he put together about Go.  It describes solving some language problems that have been around a long time.   (via)
• I was halfway through reading that last slide show link and realized there’s no way I can explain how it was an worthwhile read to someone who hadn’t done some programming.  No link or conclusion, just an observation of how esoteric this is.  I hope you enjoy it.
• Essential Vim and Vi Skills has hit a 3rd edition.  I have this as a Kindle edition, and I’m not sure how that happened.
• Zork in Duplicity, or a bizarre finding of old UNIX history in a completely unrelated place.  (via)
• These OpenBSD thin clients are a neat idea.

Your unrelated link of the week: Delilah Dirk.  It’s a comic, and the story available to read online is about a tea merchant, which makes it exactly right.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, OpenBSD, UNIXish

I had some interesting home network troubleshooting over the past week…

Your unrelated link of the week: Terrorism as Art.  An extended profile of Survival Research Laboratories at The Verge.  Even if you don’t like the content, the focus of the artist is remarkable.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

I lost 12 18 hours of my life fighting with an Exchange 2010 upgrade this week.  To compensate, I will never complain about Sendmail wonkiness ever.

• Homebrew Cray-1A.  Duplicating the internals is interesting in a “that’s crazy/difficult” way, but the case is the best part.  (via dfcat on #dragonflybsd)
• If you understand the structure of haiku, you can contribute to Absolute OpenBSD, 2nd Ed.
• Here’s a browser-based roguelike called Second Wind, and another called Epilogue.  No particular reason to link to them other than I haven’t had much roguelikes linked recently.
• The role of the troll in social media is to ruin that product.”  There’s a line that can be drawn to connect the idea of being esoteric enough that social networks (i.e. Facebook) don’t intrude on your interests, and the idea of being interested in BSD operating system creation.  What I’m saying is that BSD is less hyped, and thank goodness.
• Another social media caution: it’s their space, not yours, and they can boot you at any time. (via)
• Yeah, I’m getting curmudgeonly.  I’ll stop now.
• Go By Example.
• git-ftp, when the files you are working on are in a location only accessible by FTP – no git or ssh access.  This appears to copy them in and out as part of the commit/change process.  I can imagine a very specific workflow where this would be useful.  (via)
• Bash One-Liners, part 4.
• The Ultimate Vim Distribution.  (via)  I like how slick the single-line install methods are on these things…  but I want the number of packaging/install methods on every computer I administer to equal exactly 1, not (1 x number of installed programs).
• Why is Linux more popular than BSD?  Some of the answers are just plain wrong, or don’t understand causality… but that’s no surprise.  (via)
• Oh, hopefully this will solve the UEFI secureboot issue for DragonFly too.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the week:  A CD that comes with its own turntable and record.  Kid Koala scrapes over culture to find mentions of vinyl and DJing the same way I scrounge the Internet for mention of BSD.  His “Nerdball” from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is an astonishing display  of turntable skill.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, OpenBSD, roguelike, UNIXish

DragonFly 3.2 branches tomorrow if all goes to plan. Until then, I have a lot of reading here for you.

Your unrelated link of the week: Dog Shaming.  I have a parrot, rabbit, and lizard.  They seem like easy, normal pets compared to some of these stories.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, UNIXish

It’s been an extremely busy week for me, but I still have a batch of links here.

Your unrelated link of the week: Did you know one of the original ideas was to name DragonFly “TortoiseBSD” “TurtleBSD”?  Probably not the best name.

Posted by     Categories: DragonFly, Lazy Reading

The weather is finally turning cooler, which makes me happy.

• I don’t think I’ve seen this before: Very old UNIX releases, listed for running in emulation.  (via)
• Where the red-black tree name came from.  A red-black tree underpins Hammer 1′s data structures, though it does not in Hammer 2.  (also via)
• Someone with a HP passport login want to help this guy?  He just needs to reinstall Windows in IDE mode, or perhaps find the right sysctl to toggle.
• The acme editor, from Plan 9.  I didn’t realize it’s 20 years old.
• Speaking of editors, Replace in Multiple Files with Vim.  I haven’t seen the argdo command before, or the Vim Ninjas site.  Their color schemes article is useful just for the screenshots. (via)
• Adbuntu.  It’s not as bad or as inconsequential as most reactions would lead you to believe, but advertising within an OS seems heavy-handed.  The BSD model has been to use the operating system as a vehicle for selling hardware, and that’s been much more successful.  (see iOS, PC-BSD.)
• Where Did the Internet Come From?
• The map for Adventure.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the day: Victorian Sci-Fi.  It’s not just a reference list, it’s a link to a lot of the original material, since copyright no longer applies.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Hammer, Lazy Reading, roguelike

Yay!

• What will you have: tea or chai?  Mapping out all the names for tea around the world.  I love etymology and tea, and I know there’s some tea drinkers reading…  (via)
• Speaking of tea, this London universal tea device sounds awesome.  (via)
• Uncle Miod’s machineroom.  There’s some pictures of some old hardware buried in there that was incredibly expensive when it first came out…   (via)
• This security issue is interesting because it’s a new kind of problem, but also depressing because it’s a new kind of problem.  (via)
• Apparently a packaging system is always a good idea.  (explanation)
• A patient explanation of /usr/local and a bit of UNIX file system history, too.  (via)
• The history of Unix from where it happened, Bell Labs.  I’m pretty sure I haven’t linked to that before.  Interesting trivia note: playing the original Space Travel game in 1969 cost $75 for the computer time.(via) Your unrelated link of the week: Top Shelf is having their annual$3+ comics sale.  There’s some really good books for cheap, there.  Of special note: From Hell, about Jack the Ripper, drawn by my favorite artist.  Wizzywig, mentioned here before as a fictional mishmash of real stories and rumors about hackers and BBSes and other things people need to be a certain age to remember.  The Ticking, drawn by Renée French, whose art should be familiar to fans of Plan 9 or Go.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

Whee!

• deadweight, “Find unused CSS selectors by scraping your HTML”.  I’ve needed something like this for years.  (via)
• The same sort of thing for pkgsrc: pkg_leaves.  Worth running at least yearly, or at least before any significant pkgsrc upgrade.  There’s no point in updating a package you don’t use or need.
• GNU Coreutils cheat sheet, plus the instructions to make it.  There’s other cheatsheets linked in the article that may be useful.
• Compiler benchmarks, comparing gcc and clang versions.  For a complete benchmark, I’d want to compare what number of programs build with each, too.  (via ftigeot on #dragonflybsd)
• When ‘your mom’ and Unix jokes collide.
• Distraction-free writing with Vim.  (via)
• Also, there’s a “Modern Vim” book on the way.  Will it be good?  I have no idea; I don’t know of any prior books by the author or who the publisher is.  Those facts might help.
• For a known author and publisher, here’s a status report on Absolute OpenBSD, 2nd Edition.  If you don’t know what a BOFH is from his last sentence, read the original stories.
• Quadrilateral Cowboy, a cyberpunk hacking game that actually involves non-boring programming and not just a pipe-matching game under the guise of hacking.
• While I’m linking to games, GUTS, sorta like Diablo but more… roguey?  It’s turn-based.  Also, an excuse to use the roguelike tag.
• 4 UNIX commands I abuse every day.  Having done a fair amount of Perl programming, I am entertained by having side effects being the intended goal.  Also, the author pays attention to what runs on BSD.  (via)
• Disks lie. And the controllers that run them are partners in crime.”  Marshall Kirk McKusick describes just how hard it is to know when your data has really made it from memory to disk.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the week.  Dubgif.  Random animated gifs and dubstep clips.  Sometimes it doesn’t work, and sometimes it’s perfect.  (via)  If that’s too random, there’s also this .

• DragonFly is a popular project name, but this is unrelated to DragonFly BSD.
• Russian Tea HOWTO.  I know there’s at least a few vigorous tea-drinkers in DragonFly other than me.  The tl;dr version is “make a syrup and dilute”, but it’s more enjoyable to get into the paperphanalia of it all.
• I don’t know what Xombrero is, but someone submitted patches for it to build on DragonFly.  What a nice thing to do!
• A Generation Lost in the Bazaar, by Poul-Henning Kamp.  Even if you don’t agree with his cathedral vs. bazaar generalizations, this description sums up a problem well: “Sam Leffler’s graphics/libtiff is one of the 122 packages on the road to www/firefox, yet the resulting Firefox browser does not render TIFF images.”  (via)
• Fourmilab.ch, the site of John Walker, co-author of AutoCAD.  The site looks like something from the late 90s but is surprisingly modern.  The Unix Utilities section has some interesting programs.  I’d link to it directly, but it’s a framed page on the site.  (See what I meant about “90s”?)
• Beyond lies the wub: a history of dubstep.  You may or may not be interested in the music, but I like these long-form articles coming from the Verge.
• 150 Troma films for free on YouTube.  (via)  The most famous one isn’t free, but it’s there.
• Oh my goodness, the “thagomizer” is a real thing.
• Racing modified electric kid vehicles.  I had a coworker who put a wheelchair battery into his daughter’s Barbie car.  He said it doubled the speed and made it able to drive on two wheels.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the week:  Flux Machine.  Be patient; the images are animated to good effect.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, Off-Topic

There’s certainly no theme to this week’s links.  I even manage to avoid my usual git and vim links, strangely.

Your unrelated comic link of the week: Cul De Sac.   The strip is ending due to the creator’s health issues, but what he has done is marvelous.  This is one of the few newspaper strips that is both visually interesting and often abruptly laugh out loud funny, without being patronizing.

Posted by     Categories: Hammer, Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, roguelike, UNIXish

I think I’ve made it through my backlog of things to post.  For no apparent reason, I ended up with a whole bunch of ‘this vs. that’ links this week.

Your unrelated link of the week: Taipan!  I played this on the Apple ][ and loved it.  The buy-low-sell-high game is an old genre that hasn’t been used in newer games in the same fashion as roguelikes or sidescrollers.  The only recent equivalents I can think of are Drug Wars and maaaaybe Eve Online.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, Off-Topic

A light list this week, but I’ve been on an island in Canada the past week.  I can’t see much except water from there.
• Part of the reason I started this Digest was to document things that would otherwise remain buried on mailing lists.  So I feel there’s a parallel between this and reporting on police scanners – not the same content, but the same intent.
• The Esoteric Whodunit.  Read this article and think of the last time you were explaining something computer-related to someone, and had to change what you said in order to make it more comprehensible.
• SSD Cache Accelerators work.  This is not news to anyone who has used swapcache(8), which does just what these hardware products do – in software, free.  Here’s where you can pat yourself on the back for being a DragonFly user.  (via)
• Desktop 2.0 and the future of the networked operating system.  This somewhat wandering article assumes having everything go online is a good thing.

I seem to include a vi/vim tip every week.  It’s not on purpose, or at least it wasn’t until now.

Your unrelated link of the week: a thorough investigation of the history of the ‘long s’ character, via.  If that’s too cerebral for you, try this video of a man making turkeys gobble, which made me laugh and laugh.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, Off-Topic

I may be on the road as you read this, so I’m trying to pre-pack this Lazy Reading entry.  I also pre-apologize for any lack of posts from me.

Your unrelated comics link of the week: You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpack.  UK readers may already be familiar with this artist.

Remember my crazy theory from two weeks ago?  Haha!  It doesn’t actually prove my idea because it’s a one-time charge, but I feel vindicated.

It’s a short week this week, but that’s OK.  The last few weeks have been a deluge of links.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, OpenBSD

I think there’s a chance we’re about to see Microsoft start to slip downhill, in a way that may only be apparent a year from now if it continues.  The company’s been a big moneymaker for years, but news items like the recent writedowns and my personal experience that they’re outsourcing license compliance checking makes me think that the rise of tablets and smartphones is cutting into their Windows/Office revenues like nothing ever has before.

It’s a guess, and it’s not likely that I’m right.  If I am, it’s a seismic shift.  Enough armchair theory!  Here’s the links:

Your unrelated comics link of the week: The Whole Story.  A comics collection, sort of  like the ‘humble indie bundles’ for games, where if you pay a bit more, you get even more comics.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, roguelike

It’s summer, and I’m too warm.  I’m whiny but still making with the links:

Your unrelated link of the day: The Kleptones are great, and this collection of the music that influenced Paul Simon’s Graceland is a wonderful find.  A happier album I’ve never heard.  I feel nostalgic for the days when you had to actually search for music.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, roguelike, UNIXish

I have such a surplus of links these days that I started this Lazy Reading two weeks ago.

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Elfquest, every issue ever.  The dialogue is cheesy but the original art is fun, in a way that grabbed me when I read it at 10 years of age.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, Someday you will need this

I got to use the ‘roguelike’ tag again this week, which always makes me happy.  Surprisingly, it’s not about… that roguelike.

Your unrelated link of the week: I happen to work at a salt mining operation, which leads to some unique problems (more).  Mining in the US is regulated by MSHA, which has been cracking down since the Upper Big Branch incident. MSHA issues  ’fatalgrams‘ every time a miner dies.  MSHA also shows up on site as soon as possible, which means they are there taking pictures within a few minutes, with equipment still running.  It’s essentially crime scene photos, and a little worrying; many of the deaths are of people around my age with similar experience.

So many links this week I’m already working on next week’s entry.  Enjoy!

Your unrelated comic link of the week: Make Good Art.  (via)  The comic version of Neil Gaiman’s recent commencement speech, cause comics are more fun than video.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, Someday you will need this

Let’s get right down to it:

• Hey, Nmap 6 is out.  It’s one of those always-useful tools, similar to wireshark.
• Biculturalism, a fair assessment.  (via)  The generalizations are a little extreme (1 Unix-based author who Got Religion, vs. a diffused Windows developer stereotype) but still has value.
• A Git Horror Story.  (via)  Not a true story, but useful for describing how git commits can be GPG-signed.
• A recent Google Doodle, a playable Moog synthesizer, done for Bob Moog’s birthday.  The Moog Music site has instructions.  I happened to notice they’re using FreeBSD as the server – cool!  Maybe it’s just the hosting org?  Anyway, I link to it because Bob Moog’s cousin was for a while my father’s employer.
• I did not know this existed: OpenBSD Network Shell.  (via)  Interface like a Cisco-ish router, internals are OpenBSD.
• There’s been recent news articles about how programmers over 35 tend to not get hired.  Here’s one of the reasons: younger programmers discount the value of their own time.  Anything where all the benefits (cheaper labor, more products) accrue to the company, and all the costs go to the employee (time lost, extra work) is not a good idea in the long run.
• Now I’ve met the other DragonFly BSD user, too.”  That’s two more than I expected for any given project, really.
• Undeadly.org has an extensive interview/article about OpenSMTPd.  It’s OpenBSD’s implementation of a SMTP daemon, which is something I haven’t heard much about before.  Compare with DragonFly’s much-smaller-in-scope dma.
• Van Jacobsen Saved the Internet.  Or just fixed a timing bug.  Depends on whether you listen to Wired or to him.  The interesting part is that he had to build the tools to troubleshoot the problem.
• Here’s something I don’t think anyone’s noticed yet: Microsoft is responsible for half of Google’s DMCA notices last month.  My employer recently was audited by Microsoft (technically by Accenture contractors for Microsoft) for license compliance.  My Dell sales representative, when I asked him for a list of what Microsoft-licensed OEM devices we had bought, said many of his customers were asking for the same thing.  He joked that Microsoft was trying to improve its profitability numbers for the quarter.  Given that they are trying to push to Windows 8, that might just be true, and they are trying to enforce their way to it, not sell their way to it.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

There’s been so much activity this week in DragonFly that I’m having a hard time keeping up.  There’s always time for Lazy Reading, though.

Your unrelated link of the week: Captain Forever.  A game. Mentioned most recently on Verge, but read Rock, Paper, Shotgun for context.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

I’m starting to pack these full enough that I might have to go biweekly.

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Wizzywig.  A self-contained comic about the early days of phone phreaking and hacking, written and drawn by Ed Piskor.   The first two chapters are available as a PDF.  Read and if you like it, order the whole thing.  Also: Steve and Steve.  If you know your history, you’ll get the cartoon.

Ed Piskor is currently cartooning the origin of hip-hop at BoingBoing; it’s a good read.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

Your unrelated links of the week: Turntablism.  I was talking about assembled music last week, and this is a whole area to itself.  Watch Kid Koala turn a few seconds of trumpet playing into an entire blues progression.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, roguelike

I go a bit beyond presenting links and comment on them too, this week.  Not too much!  Enjoy.

Your unrelated link of the week.  Youtube Poop.  As far as I can tell, ‘Youtube Poop’ are glitched videos made from Youtube content but with segments repeated, frames modified, or new sentences constructed from reassembling the frames.  Sometimes noisy, sometimes rude.  Also, an art form that can only exist now, and never really before.  Reminds me of the old Fensler Films, or that odd series out of Japan.  I find the idea of assembling new rhythms and music out of non-musical items fascinating, but I would, wouldn’t I?

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading

Enjoy!

Your unrelated link of the week: One Thing Well.  The BSD tag might be the most useful.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, Someday you will need this, UNIXish

It’s a good week when I can start collecting new Lazy Reading material right after posting the previous week’s summary.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

The links are all over the map this week, which is fine.  Enjoy!

Your unrelated link of the week: memepool.  It’s seen some activity lately.  It was a blog before there were blogs, and I was part of it.

This would be the right time for an April Fools joke…  but no.  It’s so common it’s hard to come up with something that won’t make people roll their eyes.

Your unrelated link of the day: a Space Shuttle launch from the point of view of the booster rocket. (via)  Remember when humanity had reusable spaceships?

This is the week of in-depth items to look at.  I hope you have some time set aside…  Also, I’m doing something a little different; since Lazy Reading articles are built up over the week, I’m scheduling it for early Sunday (EST) so that you can read it in your bathrobe, drinking an astonishingly large amount of tea.  Or at least that’s what I’ll be doing.

• Apparently there’s a Russian version of BSD Magazine, with a special Russian-only article.  Anyone who can read it willing to tell me what it’s about?
• Did you know BSD also stands for something bike-related?
• 70 Roguelikes!  The 7-Day Roguelike Challenge, just completed, has 70 games out as a result.  This will keep you busy, and there’s a very good writeup on several of the games to help you pick from the options.
• 20 Years of Adobe Photoshop.  (via)  I link it because almost everyone, sooner or later, has used it or has used a program with a very similar tool layout.  Though I suppose you could argue it all comes from MacPaint, designed by Susan Kare, who happens to have also originated Clarus the dogcow.  Moof!
• Man, Apple used to really have a sense of humor, too.  Maybe they still do.  Companies still do funny things (caution, autoplay video), but it seems to be done with the company’s marketing image in mind these days.  Also, get your ball out of my yard you darn kids etc.
• Michael Lucas is teaching a SSH class at BSDCan 2012.
• Lucas also has also disclosed numbers on his recent self-publishing venture.  I love seeing numbers like this because self-publishing discussion usually brings a whole lot of biases to the table, and people come down on one side or another because of what they want it to be, not because of what it is.  (Like discussions of the music industry, piracy, and software.)  This is just the plain numbers.  Also, Absolute OpenBSD, second edition, is definitely his next book.
• Still on ssh, This Undeadly article talks about using OpenBSD, make, and ssh to speed up research.
• 20 iconic tech sounds bound for extinction. (via)  Something in there will make you feel nostalgic.  I like the 8mm film noise.
• Speaking of noise, here’s Famous Sounds, mostly electronically generated or sampled.  (via)  I guarantee some of these will be instantly familiar even though you won’t have heard the original song.

Your unrelated link of the week: Traitor.  (via)  It’s a Flash space shootemup game.   But dragonflies show up in one part!  (to shoot.)

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, Periodicals, roguelike

I’m making sure I post this Lazy Reading on the right day.  A nice full week’s worth of stuff.

Your unrelated link of the week: Neo Scavenger.  (via)  It’s a game, in Flash, and in beta.  If you like  postapocalyptic survival, it may be for you.

This is the week where I remember to actually write introductory text.  I also didn’t think I was going to have anything good this week, but The Internet came through for me at the last minute.  Thanks, Internet!  It’s also the week where I mis-schedule this post for Friday, temporarily.

Your unrelated link of the week: Welcome to Muppet Labs, where the future is being made today!

Posted by     Categories: DragonFly, Lazy Reading

Whee!

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Friends With Boys.  The whole comic is available online starting with the first page here and going on for about 200 more.  The full comic is only going to be online for a few days – hopefully enough for people to see it – and then you have to buy it.  (There will still be a preview.)  It’s a good story.

Apparently this is a good week for Lazy Reading links, cause I have lots!   If you have any specific suggestions of where to find more links, I’d welcome them.  I’m sure there’s more people to follow that come up with tidbits like these…

Your unrelated link of the week: Cyriak.  An animator in the UK; I like the rhythmic repetition in his (occasionally disturbing) animations.

As I mentioned last week, DragonFly developer Venkatesh Srinivas is collecting pledges for his crazy-long bike ride, raising funds for cancer patient support.  Not to put too fine a point on it, but my mother died from cancer in a long, agonizing process some years ago.  The support system funded by these pledges would have helped us tremendously.  Please donate a few dollars to ease someone else’s burden.

Hey, it’s snowing here!  Finally.

• I remember when fractal zooming would bring a desktop computer to its knees.  Now, you can do it in a web browser.   (via)  This exists as a standalone application (x11/XaoS) too.
• I see content from here get splogged, from time to time, and I think that’s what’s happening here.  Someone throws “BSD” into a content generator, with ads slapped on top of it?   Honestly, I’m not sure what it is.  (via)
• Hammer 2 work is starting, as noted earlier this week.  Let’s see some details on a similar filesystem project, btrfs.  (via)
• You should quit Facebook because privacy etc. you’ve heard it from me before.  The arguments are getting more thorough, though.
• Here’s an article from independent game developer Jeff Vogel about serving a niche with your independent work.  I like his writing, plus if you squint your eyes and sorta look at that article’s point sideways, you could construe it as relevant for BSD.
• For fun, spot the two things I mention/link to here frequently, in this somewhat hypey article about Tumblr.  (via)
• An Economist article about shifting from computer to computer.   I read that and realized the one computer constant for me isn’t my desktop – it’s “~”.
• If you ever played games on the Amiga, you may want to watch this movie.  It’s clips from a lot of Amiga games.  By a lot, I mean an hour and a half of footage total.  There were some really advanced games for the time there.  (via)

Your unrelated comic link of the week: Shut Up About Cats.  The rest of that site’s good too.

Also!  On a related link, Venkatesh Srinivas, one of the DragonFly developers, is participating in a bike ride to raise cash for the Ulman Cancer Fund.  If you’d like to pledge  some money, he’ll feel better as he cycles a ridiculous 4,000 miles across the US.

Posted by     Categories: Goings-on, Lazy Reading

It’s like early spring here in the northeast US.  Which would be fine if it was actually spring.  I miss snow.

• An explanation of the classic UNIX hierarchy.  (via thesjg on EFNet #dragonflybsd)  I’m behind any explanation that uses the phrase “accretion disk” to describe an organization.
• Hipster BSD.  If this doesn’t make sense to you, it’s based on this.
• Would you like to have DNSSEC upgrading explained to you?
• Hooray for Unicode!  (via)
• What Commons Do We Wish For?  I was, briefly, technically, an AOL employee after the Time Warner merger in 2000.  I didn’t like the notion of working for a walled garden then, and I think that’s why Facebook and other companies irk me now.  Anyway, read that article for a good explanation of why that feeling is important.

Your unrelated link of the week: Top Shelf 2.0.  A small comics publisher that has put much of their comics online to read.  Their stuff on paper is worth buying too, as I have been doing for a while now.

Posted by     Categories: Lazy Reading, UNIXish

This is the week of the funny, apparently.

Your totally unrelated video link of the week: The Necronomicon.  Pitch perfect.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

I even have some comedy in here this week.

Your unrelated comics link for the week: Tom Neely‘s Doppelganger.  Page 11 is my favoritest.

Another unrelated thing: David Shao, are you out there?  Can you get on IRC (EFNet #dragonflybsd) and help some people out with GEM/KMS questions?  Nobody’s been able to find you.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading

Getting back into the rhythm, here…

Your unrelated comics link of the week: there’s a Freddy, and a dragonfly, but it’s not DragonFly BSD.  It’s still fun though.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Conventions, Lazy Reading

I said posting would be more regular now that the holiday’s over, didn’t I?  I lied.

Your unrelated link for the day: The Restart Page.  (via)  Make your browser full-screen when trying any of them.

Posted by     Categories: Goings-on, Lazy Reading

Happy new year!  Regular posting should resume soon now that my holidays are over.

Your completely unrelated link of the day: Tiny Legs of Fire.  (video) Worth it for the origin of Beardslap.

(Sorry about the giant text block.  This isn’t as readable as I’d like.)

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Goings-on, Lazy Reading

The links are sheer entertainment this week.  No strong options or anything, not even about that U.S. legislative mess called SOPA.

Your unrelated comic link of the week: Basic Instructions.  Well, not totally unrelated, since BSD author Michael Lucas’s tweet about it reminded me.  I’ve got the first book; I need to get the second and third.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, pkgsrc, roguelike

Last week was low on links, but this week is great!  I hope you have some time set aside.

• This article “The Strange Birth and Long Life of UNIX” has a picture of a PDP-11.  I don’t know if I ever actually saw one and knew it before.  (via)
• Also from the same place: Window Managers Bloodlines.
• Anecdotal, but probably true. (via luxh on EFNet #dragonfly)
• nginx is the new cool and unpronounceable web server these days, apparently.  Michael Lucas covers how to transition static Apache sites over to it.
• This PDF showing slides from the recent NYCBUG presentation by Ike Levy, titled “Inappropriate Cloud Use”, is entertaining, and makes a good point.  Cloud computing is cheap on a per month basis, but since it’s a reoccurring cost, it can cost a surprisingly large amount in the long run.  (via)
• Hey, a patch for DragonFly (and other BSD) support in Google’s leveldb.
• Don’t Be a Free User” (via)  The last paragraph is the best.
• An expanded grep and diff.  ‘grep’ and ‘diff’ have been present for so long, and people understand what they do, generally, that new tools get named after them just because the concept is ingrained in people’s minds.  Note that I said “generally”, as regular expressions can be difficult.  (via)
• A lot of people don’t realize how they infringe on copyright.  This writeup describes something I’ve seen for years: people think a disclaimer that effectively says “I’m infringing but I’m doing it with the best of intentions” makes a difference.  It doesn’t.
• So this is what that Xerox Star GUI interface looked like.  You know, the ‘first’ desktop GUI.   (via) Also, there was some advanced stuff in 1968.
• I like this indicator light setup.  (also via luxh on EFNet #dragonflybsd)  There’s some other interesting old computer stuff at that site too.  I wish there still were computers like these.
• While we’re talking about old things with a certain feel to them, why not Battersea Power Station?  Here’s some pictures.  (via)

Your unrelated link of the day: Since we’re talking about old things and environments, why not look at some pictures of my workplace?

Posted by     Categories: BSD, DragonFly, Goings-on, Lazy Reading, UNIXish

• Here’s some old software.  I’ve got something older sitting on my shelf here, though.
• A patch to DragonFly, taken from OpenBSD, submitted by Loganaden Velvindron and committed by Venkatesh Srinivas.  The patch isn’t that exciting, but it makes me feel cool to namedrop non-Americanized names.  If only I could pronounce them!
• Speaking of which, there isn’t always a lot of comments on this Digest (which is good; a long series of comments on the Internet tend to be the result of trolling or inanity.), but the recent strlen() story led to some juicy details.
• Man, I wish this NoteSlate device existed.  There’s the BoogieBoard, but it’s not quite the same.

I’ll make up for my relatively low number of links by asking a question:   Where do you go for your end of year gift giving?  Where do you wish people would go to buy you gifts?  I’m looking for suggestions for a gift guide.

Your unrelated comics link of the week: Gun Show.  This one and that one are my favorites.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading

Happy (post) Turkey Day for the U.S. readers!  A light link week this week.

• Facebook is bad for the Internet.  ‘Gaslighting’ is a new term to me.  As that article points out, I can’t even put my posts to the Digest onto Facebook in any sort of automated way.  Facebook suggests that of course I’d love to retype them all by hand.  That’s not realistic.    Facebook doesn’t want any sort of useful external link to be visible to their customers.  Customers isn’t actually the right word; the customers are the advertisers.  What would be a better word for the users?  Crop?
• the internet is above and beyond all else a resentment machine.“  It’s a very long essay that points out people are confusing brand identity with personal identity.  (via)
• You know what would be good?  More conversations about games on BSD, cause it could use some attention.  Oh hey there you go.
• A Dragonfly lamp (via Julian Gehtdichgarnichtsan)

Your unrelated link of the week: Animals Talking In All Caps.  It is what it says it is.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Goings-on, Lazy Reading

Hey, the date’s sorta palindromic!  Sorta.

• “Bundled, Buried and Behind Closed Doors” – a video description of the physical parts of the Internet.  Remember when MAE-East or MAE-West would have a bad day and half the Internet felt it?  Really, half.  I don’t think I’m exaggerating. (via)
• Google has a verbatim search mode now, for those of you who regret the loss of ‘+’ as a required search term designator.  (via and also sort of via)  There’s always alternatives.
• The expr program is a real piece of crap.“  Laser-focused complaining about a small program that’s had 4 decades to improve, and hasn’t.
• Mechanics for Pure Aesthetics”  The videos are interesting, and I’m linking to this because so much of what I post here and deal with is focused computer work.  Everything is a tool, with a purpose, and a result that you expect.  This idea of machinery or even software having a purpose other than result generation is underexplored.  There’s lots of tools to create art, but there’s little that is art itself.  Even with that general lack, we still get excited when the edge of some sort of aesthetic appeal nudges its way into the materials we use.  You could argue that Apple’s success (for instance) comes from being the one company that consistently thinks about what a product is, instead of what it does.
• If you use fastcgi, you may need the patch that this blog post talks about.  Also, apache-mpm-prefork is the better choice for Apache on DragonFly.
• DragonFly mug shot

Your random comic link of the day: Calamity of Challenge.  Also here.  And here.  If this artist’s way of drawing grabs you like it grabs me, he has pages and commissions for sale.

Posted by     Categories: BSD, Lazy Reading, Off-Topic, UNIXish