Tue 20 August 2019
Mon 19 August 2019
Do you have an X11 application that insists on using a font you hate?
Change that easily with fontconfig.
This syntax in your
.fonts.conf will change the response for one font into an answer from another:
<alias> <family>Gentium</family> <prefer> <family>Tex Gyre Pagella</family> </prefer> </alias>
Add as many stanzas as you like; then run
fc-cache and restart your application.
Fri 02 August 2019
Fri 12 July 2019
This is a reminder that spinning storage is still useful for large data dumps, media, backups, and other bulky things that you don't need to change continuously.
But mostly, it's cost-effective. The two current sweet spots for capacity/performance (assuming brand-name, non-sale, 7200RPM SATA3 3.5" disks) are at 4TB (about $75) and 10TB (about $270).
I also remind you that you want RAID for reliability, but it's not backup by itself.
Tue 25 June 2019
Via Rick Thomas on the Debian Users mailing list:
In any case, the solution I came up with is
apt-get --purge install -y sysvinit-core dbus- glib-networking- libgtk-3-0- apt-get --purge autoremove
Note the trailing minus-signs on dbus- glib-networking- libgtk-3-0- These packages need to be deleted in the same pass as sysvinit-core …
Thu 30 May 2019
There is no such thing as an intuitive interface (to a computer). All interfaces are learned, To the extent that they re-use components and repeat behaviors already learned, some interfaces can be easier to learn.
Somebody quipped "The only intuitive interface is the nipple; after that it's all learned." It might have been Bruce Ediger. Doesn't matter who it was: turns out that humans don't have much of an intuition for nipples, either. Breastfeeding techniques need to be learned, too. It's always easier to learn something that lots of other people around you are demonstrating regularly; you also know who to ask for help.
Wed 29 May 2019
You know how this works, right? These are false statements about what non-programmers believe about programmers and programming. The proper response to every single statement is "Not always."
- Programming is just a job that anyone can do.
- Programming is just a job that anyone who has taken programming courses can …
Fri 17 May 2019
Let's keep track of some laws in Massachusetts that should be changed.
SECTION 56. Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, any city or town that has received a grant from the executive office of housing and economic development or …
Wed 15 May 2019
It seems increasingly unwise to allow an Intel-made CPU to talk to the outside world. But the NUC-style machines are almost exclusively Intel. What should we do for a new firewall?
You'll recall that I prefer firewalls to run Debian Stable, so that security updates are available promptly. While there …
Wed 17 April 2019
I recently ordered a dozen things from Amazon from six vendors. All the things were pretty technical -- ethernet switches, fiber optic cables, transceivers, things like that. This is normal.
Four of the six vendors asked me to review their products. Two asked me multiple times over the same order.
Here's my policy, and I urge you to consider the same one:
I will only leave a review on a commerce site if I have an unusual experience to report. An unusual experience is either surprisingly good or exceptionally bad. I won't give any feedback for a transaction in which I paid the agreed amount of money, received the product in a reasonable time, and the product worked as expected.
Adding reviews outside of that policy has two negative effects: it adds useless noise to the review section, and it tends to inflate star-system grades.
Fri 22 March 2019
Thu 21 March 2019
Tue 26 February 2019
Wed 06 February 2019
Sat 02 February 2019
Everything is a semi-rational reaction to something else.
Companies used to own and run their own machines on-premises. But doing it properly (HVAC, power, raised floors, standardized racks, management, redundancy, preparedness...) is expensive and not actually most companies' core competency. So they moved to colocated datacenters, where a competent company …