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Free the General

February 29th, 2012

If you follow Reggae Music you may have heard that Buju Banton was jailed. For a long time I have carried these words with me and I don't know if I shared them yet, but the resistor codes in electronics stand for:

Buju Banton, Rasta Of Young Generation, Became Victorious, Glorious & Wise
following this is the Electronic Resistor Codes as taught by Canadian Colleges. I know Buju Banton is a resistor! Hang in there sir! Free Buju Banton!


article test

February 27th, 2012

When searching some articles appeared duplicate, with one not having content. This should fix that.


100+ Euros donations to some *BSD's

February 26th, 2012

The Marakesh Express came through. Just Kidding! I donated 50 euros to the OpenBSD project and 57 Euros (75 dollars) to the FreeBSD Project. I use both Operating Systems at home and at work and am very satisfied with both projects and their individual directions. I'm still looking to purchase OpenBSD 5.1 when it's up for preorders, so this is a big spend!


Jupiter and Venus really bright

February 19th, 2012

Today I saw Jupiter and Venus really bright in the South-West-Western sky. I couldn't take a photo but I got a clip of xephem for the memories. Jupiter is in Aries and Venus is in Pisces, and Uranus in Pisces too but it can't be seen with the naked eye.


Sticker time!

February 13th, 2012

I opened my OpenBSD 5.0 CD set today. I was going to give it away/trade it away but noone was interested. 90 days on offer went past and so I opened it today. I put the stickers on mars and saturn.

I think it looks stunningly good. Mars has a lot of goo over it from previous OpenBSD 3.0 stickers that were on its casing that were removed for a bit, but the goo didn't disappear. Just goes to show you going with OpenBSD is a one way street :-).


Information and its exchange

February 13th, 2012

What is information? It's data. It's written symbols or spoken words that are encoded/recorded somehow. In the 80's when I was a child we had several means of getting information. We could buy books. We could buy a vinyl record or a cassette tape. Information intended for the masses was spread by radio and television. Usually the radio stations were government run or were independent private radio stations that were approved by government who listened like owls for any "message" that did not fit a strict guideline. If someone disregarded these guidelines (like saying F.U.C.K. on-air) would get penalized or even turned off completely.

So what if you wanted a more relaxed medium to listen to? Well what we did in the early 90's was share cassette tapes with spoken word over music (hip-hop). The drawback was that you had to make a master copy and copy from it because every time you copied the analog signal on the tape would get ever so distorted. Also with more usage the tape would get worn. It was fairly frustrating. When I then attended College for computing engineering technology I was told that digital is a cheap way of exchanging information. The digital circuitry didn't care if the voltage was 0.5 volts off what it really was, which meant you could now share the SAME data over a medium that would have been impossible if it was over analog. Digital communication meant that every time you did a copy of a copy of a copy the data would not degrade in quality.

So then eventually the Internet became popular and spread. First it was slow and the information exchange was probably in 8 bit ascii (e-mail, usenet) which was fine for a 28.8 Kbps analog modem. Then came the DSL revolution. ISP's who established themselves from BBS's were bought out or were forced out of business as the Telco companies once again dominated in the Information exchange. But how that went down is irrelevant, what is more important is that Information exchanged could now be sounds as in music and it could be spread en-masse. Formats such as podcasts came. Podcasts are large MP3 files that are stored on a server and can be downloaded via a server or a bittorrent network for people to listen to a message.

So now we have a problem. Someones information is copyrighted, this means that they wish to make money off the message. In the 80's this was easy they'd get a distributor who printed records and people bought this in the store and took it home. They did not worry about piracy because if people wanted to spread the information the message would be distorted after so many copies. Today in the 2010's the message can be mass-spread with no quality degragation. The powers that used to make a good buck off the 80's method are now out of business or on the verge of. At the same time we've never had a better way of spreading information on a personal level than now. I can send a song to all my friends at fair quality. We've been liberated by the Internet. And as a closing statement any attempt to take quality sound reproduction from us is sheer censorship. The thought has already been planted that we can do this, we're not talking about what if's anymore.

We're not out to do harm, and we know that this is just a step between now and then. What's next is anyones guess but the Internet keeps changing us. We learn, and the Internet is the teacher. We are transitioning. We are as curious what's next as the next one. Some people fear change because it uproots their previous power structure. But let me ask you in all honesty is it not fair to give everyone the same outlet as an elite bunch once had? This is what (r)evolution is about and we are still evolving. One more observance is that we're becoming more seclusive in our own homes due to the Internet. This takes away some of our unity, that's the drawback. We don't need laws like ACTA to draw us further back.


Change is in the air

February 2nd, 2012

I've done some changes and I'm planning to do more changes. What I've done is I increased my BOINC load from 1 core (25%) to 2 cores (50%). It will run like this until May.

Why? What's in May?

Well, that is when OpenBSD 5.1 comes out and I've decided I'm going to make OpenBSD 5.1 my host operating system. No more vmware, it won't run on it. Also it may mean no more BOINC so that's why I'm doubling the load now to leave them with something. Also means no more windows 7 vm, and the other vm's that run FreeBSD and NetBSD I'll have to switch over to QEMU. What I'll do is get a new backup harddrive and start converting vmware containers to a format that I can play it back on QEMU. Much of what prompted me to design this thought is that youtube now works with an OpenBSD browser. This makes OpenBSD ready for the desktop for me. And it's not the first time I ran OpenBSD as a desktop, it's just that I had a breather.


Wildcarddnsd fixed on big-endian machines?

January 28th, 2012

Ever since I resurrected my G4 Cube and put OpenBSD on it I was dying to know if wildcarddnsd works on this platform. I copied uranus's configs to it (it's called mars) and ran a few queries. It was then a surprise a few weeks later that I tried an AXFR and it came back as a hexdump in dig. Not good. With gdb then I finally found out what caused the mangled packet, the nameserver and responsible person fields were of length zero, and were skipped in the SOA answer. I traced this to an integer overflow right at program start at the config file parser. Well I fixed this now in HEAD yesterday and in the upcoming release for BETA7 it will be working on big endian machines.

I also tried compiling wildcarddnsd on OpenBSD/amd64 5.1-beta and got a compiler warning. A nice developer helped me out and a second pointed to another possible problem. So I have the fix for silencing this compiler warning but I haven't committed it yet. I want to play with this a little first before I do so I know that it doesn't cause any problems.


My dream Smartphone (Computer)

January 27th, 2012

My dream smartphone would be small like an iphone. It would have USB ports for keyboard and mouse and perhaps a VGA port for external monitor. It would be running OpenBSD without locking or restrictions. What's really important to me is that I can program the OS on this phone. The phone functions can be proprietary without source code but they must be installed in a way that it allows the rest of the system to function with it. Perhaps an asterisk server built-in so that it can do programmable voice mail or something. There wouldn't be a harddrive in the phone but rather an SSD. What's really important to me is that I can develop applications on the phone for the phone, and not have to buy a proprietary laptop to use some application which is the only one that can do so. It may have a GPS and/or Galileo/Glonass/whatever geopositioning chip in it. But this should be readable by an open driver on OpenBSD and through an ioctl into userland or something. I want to make use of the Geolocation too. It should have Wifi and bluetooth and if I want to allow tethering I should be able to program it in. I should be able to compile the kernel on this smartphone and run that instead. Really. I really want this to be MY phone not THEIR phone that I am allowed to use. Currently I have no cell phone at all because what I just described doesn't exist. Hmm how much would I pay for what I just described? Perhaps 400 euros at max.


Removed web mirror on uranus.centroid.eu

January 18th, 2012

You may not have known it but uranus.centroid.eu was serving this blog for well over a year. I have now killed the rsync job and erased the mirror. Uranus will do other tasks in the future, stuff I don't want to go into just yet. Here is an mrtg yearly graph that I was hosting on uranus that doesn't run anymore.

As you can see uranus did quite a bit of traffic every month. (about 15GB per month on average). If you used to go to uranus.centroid.eu to get whatever you can still get it on ipv4.goldflipper.net for the time being.


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