Now in yummy caramel flavour!

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Acid Alarm 

Nothing like a good bout of indigestion to wake you up bright and breezy at 5am!
*Props open eyelids with matchsticks* Gonna be a long day today.

Edit: Had another bout on Saturday. Started at about 11pm, finished sometime around 3am in the morning. Not even 9 antacid tablets could make a dent. Time to see the doc again, I think.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004


Capital One bank have excelled themselves today. The envelope they sent me in the post contained three leaflets, two A4 sheets of paper, a pre-paid envelope and a plastic pseudo credit card - all this to get me to join. What a waste!

"THIS IS NOT A CREDIT CARD" <--- No shit Sherlock!
So why bother sending it? You'll be sending me laundered money next!

The unanswered question remains... what interesting uses can I make for this credit card? Suggestions please!

Monday, September 27, 2004

When a mouse becomes vermin 

My wireless wheelmouse started acting in a rather freaky way at the weekend, it almost seemed to develop a mind of it's own, (aparently a common problem). If you've never witnessed this first hand, let me tell you, it's very alarming.

It has taken me ages to track down a culprit but I think I have finally found one.

Insufficient Memory – Many users have observed how much smoother everything runs after they have just added more RAM to their computer. If you don’t have enough memory, your operating system starts to use more of your virtual (or scratch) memory on the hard drive.

One clue that this is happening is that the LED indicator on the drive will be blinking furiously as the OS shuffles blocks of data in and out of RAM. This is called thrashing.

Another indicator is that sometimes you’ll move the mouse and the
mouse pointer won’t respond for a moment, or it will feel like it’s dragging its
heels as you push it across the screen with effort.

I have suspected for a long time that I've been running short of RAM and on reading this explanation it is almost identical to what I have experienced.

*Sigh* I don't think it will take any more sticks, as I'm sure I installed the maximum when I upgraded last year.

Sunday, September 26, 2004


Not sure what I'd done, but there was something in my device file preventing me from connecting. Good job I had a backup elsewhere! A quick copy over, a minor change and voila!.. the linux box lives again.

Phew! One less thing to worry about!

The interweb hates me 

Now I've managed to take my Linux box offline.
Is there anything else I can bugger up this weekend?

Saturday, September 25, 2004


Do I scan emails - yes
Do I have several monitoring apps - yes
Do I scan attachments before I open them - yes

So how the hell did a copy of Nesky end up in my "Temp" file?
My first virus after 14 years of computing.
Today is a black day.

May this be a warning to you - even those of us who agressively protect their PC's can get infected.
Never be complacent about your defenses.

Friday, September 17, 2004


I didn't know it was a foreign room before I joined, but it did make for an entertaining couple of minutes...

* Join
* Now talking in #Asura
* Topic is 'ha!'
* Set by snake on Fri Sep 17 17:47:33
* snake slaps Darien around a bit with a large trout
||Discordia|| Ha? *looks puzzled*
||Secret|| snako
* snake slaps Discordia around a bit with a large trout
||Secret|| ke madres es arround ?
* Discordia eeps
||snake|| around
||Secret|| es como ya ke no
||snake|| alrededor
||Secret|| o al rededor
||Secret|| aa ok
||snake|| cuantos años tienes?
||snake|| ?
||snake|| hello Discordia
* snake slaps Secret around a bit with a large trout
||snake|| contesta raro
||Discordia|| Hi snake
||Secret|| yo ?
||snake|| no
||snake|| yo
||snake|| si wey
||Secret|| 21
||Secret|| =)
||Secret|| por que ?
||snake|| no mames
||snake|| no tienes 21
||snake|| si eres un morrito
||Secret|| si we
||snake|| cuantos años tienes
||Secret|| jaja
||Discordia|| I'm sorry, my Universal Translator is broken
* Discordia hits the Universal Translator
||snake|| haha
||Discordia|| *beep* *beep* Damnit
||Discordia|| Damn, it must be dead, I can't hear anything now!
* Discordia pouts
||snake|| bah
||snake|| just speak english
||Discordia|| OMG! it's working!
||snake|| ??????
* Discordia smiles
||snake|| weird
||Discordia|| It's cheap rubbish, I think it's under warranty tho :)
* Discordia decides it might be better to wander back to the shop and get a refund

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

How the foolish have evolved 

I met my first would-be scriptkiddie tonight. (Actually I've probably met more, but never this blatant) He probably doesn't know it yet, probably never will.
Yesterday he bragged about breaking into his friend's PC - how dumb can you get?
Today he's asking me and a couple of online acquaintances (none of which he knows from Adam) how to 'load an exploit to test for vulnerabilites'.
He then proceeds to post all the code, (which incidentally he's downloaded from someone and hasn't actually written or even properly understands) into the open channel.
Now my "C" knowledge isn't great by any stretch of the imagination, but it's clear to me that this is a bruteforce entry onto someone's PC.
He then tells me he's learning how to code in "C".

This attitude annoys me on so many levels. He's got a shell account (so doesn't even run Linux), he plays with code that he knows very little about and he thinks it's fun to break into the PC of someone who trusts him.
Not only that, but he then has the cheek to brag about it to 4 complete strangers (actually 3, one of them is a clone of me, but he probably hasn't figured that out yet).

He'll probably be smoking in his early teens and sharing needles by his twenties. *Sigh*

Monday, September 13, 2004

Man and machine in harmony 

Finally! - I've got sound on the Linux box.
I was beginning to think my card was faulty!
I just need to work out why Totem won't play my .wavs properly.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Traffic for traffic's sake 

One of my pet grumbles with email is auto-responders. I'm not a big fan, they're not necessary half the time and just create loads of white noise.
OK 'out of office' replies, though annoying are useful for business I suppose, but responders from email gateway filters and AV software just leave me seething.

Why? Do you ask.

Well, years ago it was deemed useful to respond to a viral message and alert the sender so the infection could be minimised. Some manufacturers even made it possible to send replies automatically, so that no human intervention was required.

That was then. The reality now is that most viral emails these days are spoofed. A spoofed email appears to come from one destination when in actual fact it comes from somewhere else.

Now, if we go back to the gateway filtering and antivirus software you can see the problem. The "helpful" reply doesn't go back to the infected machine, it goes elsewhere. Most of the time the reply goes back to a machine that is not even infected, creating confusion all around.

I've made a diagram to illustrate this point here.

People like me get really fed up with handling these autoreplies because they not only clog up the internet with nonsense rubbish, but they also fill up my inbox with crap.

I'm appealing to these companies, and to administrators of said software - please, PLEASE remove this "feature" from your products. It doesn't actually do anything useful any more. You're intelligent enough to realise that 99% of viral emails in the wild these days now do not originate from the sender. Stop spamming us!!

Friday, September 10, 2004

Would you like fries with that? 

I'm going to have the worse weekend ever. I just know it. I've just had it in writing that the customer service team are going to "donate" one person per week to sit on the sales desk and "cold call".

Being able to sell things to people requires a particular mentality and skill set - I have neither. What really is the point of the excercise when I can tell you now that no amount of training is going to help me sell stuff? I'm an empath, I calm people down, diffuse things, I couldn't be more unsuitable. Similarly I'd expect a salesperson to be crap at my job because they also have the wrong qualities.

I made the mistake of taking a job with a newspaper once, selling advertising space. I lasted just about two weeks. It's the only job I've ever walked out of.

I look forward to the possiblity of "cold calling" with about as much enthusiasm as I would about the possibliity of having my teeth or fingernails pulled.

When I took the job on it was with a clear understanding that I would not be joining the sales team. Now I don't mind helping or pulling my weight, but there is a limit. To add insult to injury we are already exibiting the signs of under resource. I've got roughtly four days of calls that I need to log up, but as quick as I log one up I add another three to the list. And you can't just ignore the phone either. If we lose this contract because we are so short staffed, (and I can really see it happening given the current situation), who's going to take the blame? Not sales, I can tell you.

Then I've got my boss, bless her heart telling me she's just sent an email with our sales rotation on it. "Don't read it", she says to me. Like, what fscking difference is that going to make? If I ignore it, it's not going to go away, is it?! I know she means well and is trying to sympathise, I just don't think she realises how big a deal this is to me. I'm getting tension headaches just thinking about it.

I feel like a convict on death row that has just been handed his day of execution. I'm counting down the days now until they put the noose over my head.

*Sigh* I may as well start drafting my resignation now.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Kernel is an "F" word 

It's amazing what you find in source code, amazing but not a surprise!
Kernel is an "F" word

Tuesday, September 07, 2004


They showed the Beslan video on TV tonight. Those poor, poor kids. The image of that boy with his hands over his ears sitting on the floor next to a terroist with a foot on a detonator will haunt me for days. The way the explosives were wired up in that gym full of kids just reminded me of WWII concentration camp footage, or some sort of crude torture chamber. It was that grim.
I can't even begin to describe how I'm feeling right now.

How can human beings be so evil?

Monday, September 06, 2004

Sex, lies and video tape. 

Yet again, I am left in total bewilderment over the actions of others.
A few years ago I left a chat network, following a rather heated discussion with the founder. The woman in question chose to flame me in open channel using a nice collection of expletives. An interesting way to handle your staff, showing total disregard to ethics and displaying a most astonishing unprofessional attitude to anyone who cared. Since this incident I've found out that this is not unusual for her.

Her attitude was the last nail in the coffin quite frankly, and helped making the decision to go that much easier. Since departing, which, I have to say, was the best decision I could have made, I've found she can stoop to new lows of public conduct on a frighteningly frequent basis. I'm not naming names, I'm above that, those that had have the misfortune to have come into contact with her will know exactly who I am talking about.

Her chat network hasn't been fairing so well recently, many staff have been on the receiving end of her unpredictable moods and draconian attitude - others have simply got tired and bored of the internal politics and left*. It's a real shame, it was once a mighty network and still has hundreds of chatters who use it and love it, but even these are dwindling.

This weekend the woman dropped her moral-bar to an all-time low. She's obviously had her pride dented and she's clearly a poor loser. Having lost her most capable staff over the last year or so, she's now resorted to hanging out her dirty laundry in public. I'm not going to go into detail, even though I’d love to get across to you how depraved she has become; because I have a lot of respect for the person concerned and to explain what she did, to me, is almost on a par with doing what she did and that's all kinds of wrong. To do this kind of thing anyway is very underhand, but I'm starting to think this woman has deep psychological problems. I am continued to be amazed at the ability of some people to be able to inflict pain and misery on others and why they would want to. How can some individuals be so spiteful?

Grrr... just makes me seethe.

(*Many of the former staff met up and started a new network and I'm proud to say I'm part of this new venture. We do things differently, we have respect for one another and our network has grown into a thriving community and the staff have become an extended family. There are no power-hungry staff and it's such a pleasure to work there.)


Friday, September 03, 2004

The best things........ 

My book arrived today from the States!! Yay!

I'm going to be revising / studying from now until I'm 60 at this rate! LOL.


Can't work out why I'm so tired this morning. I didn't go to bed any later than normal and if anything, I got up later this morning.

I so want my bed right now!