Sunday, March 30, 2003

Destination Imagination NH State Finals next week...

At the DI regional meet
Spencer's team (Merrimack Middle School - RED team, 6th-7th graders)
won first place for the "Change in DIrection" challege. The other
Merrimack Middle School team (7th-8th graders) also placed first in
their "Once upon and Improv" challenge which is a great showing for
the town.

The other co-manager of our team has been in contact with a reporter
from New Hampshire Union
newspaper and provided him with a copy of the team photo
and a quote about what the kids get out of DI.

Today's paper does have an article about leads off with two of the
Merrimack middle school teams won 1st place in their challenge and
will be going to the NH State finals.

"Two Merrimack teams -- both from Mastricola Middle School --
finished in first place in Destination Imagination's regional
tournament and will not advance to complete in different events in the
upcoming state finals."
(March 30th, 2003; Teens Section; Page 5;
"Their imaginations are taking them places", byline Dan Mclean)

The rest of the article is about the other team, their picture, team
members, quotes, description of the challenge and nothing about
our team. That sucks.

Friday, March 28, 2003

homepage archeology

While moving some files from an old server I found what appears to be
my very first webpage. It was only available on the DEC (aka
Digital/Compaq/HP) network hosted on a DEC Ultrix MIPS box running
UIUC NCSA HTTPd web server.

The file
is dated 6 Jul 1994 17:17.52 EST and
is best viewed with Xmosaic. Note gopher:// links and the caution
about visiting the site in Poland. It was all so innocent back then.

samba, LinNeighborhood and friends

At work our group has migrated our email from an old UNIX system to a
shiny new

Linux system
and need to copy files from the old to new system
using Samba. Yeah I could have used NFS, but my uid/gid are different
on the two systems and Samba is just easier.

So my laptop gets installed a bunch of Samba stuff:

apt-get install linneigh
xsmbrowser "

Thursday, March 27, 2003

Lawmakers Seek National Day of Prayer and Fasting (HR 153)


"It is a resolution that I think all of us can support with humility
and grace and our love for our great nation," Rep. Christopher Shays,
R-Ill., said Wednesday.

Don't they see the irony of invoking their god's name in
defense of their policies? Humility?

Here is the href="">text
of the HR 153 and href="

Religion and Politics -- a scary combination.

Jimmy Breslin has a related op-ed piece:

Don't Think Twice, It's All Right

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Now using 'Purple Haze' CSS template

Over at Open Source Web Design I found
a Haran's 'Purple Haze' template that give a table-like layout without
using the TABLE tag, strictly CSS.

Friday, March 14, 2003

blosxom plug-in: setiuserstasts v0.1

Blosxom Plug-in: setiuserstats

Provides SETI@home individual user stats for use in your blog.

Get it here: href="">http://www.nozel

Until I get XML::Simple installed at my webhosting site, see it in
action here.

Tramp -- remote file editing within emacs

tramp is an excellent secure replace
ment for
the venerable ange-ftp.

No time to pursue becoming a debian developer

Sigh, this morning I sent this to my debian AM and sponsor...

It has turned out that between a fulltime job and
being a father of 6 small children, there just
isn't enough time in the day to devote to
proper debian development.

Regretfully I have to remove myself from
consideration for the time being.

I still plan on contributing with doc writing,
bug reporting, etc.


Time to shop around for someone to take over maintaining the debian
package blosxom

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

LaTeX and friends

I'm putting together a CD of genealogy images and information for some
relatives and need latex,
tetex-extras and gnome-ggv
to convert some of the reports generated by

Friday, March 7, 2003

Laptop is fixed!

Field service stopped by this morning and replaced the motherboard.
It boots and runs!

cdrecording tools

This afternoon I need to burn some new Red Hat beta cds to some
testing. Time to install the cd roasting tools...

apt-get install cdrecord "

I then had to manually insmod the usb stuff

insmod usbcore usb-uhci usb-storage


cdrecord -scan
would find my HP CD-Writer 8290 recorder.p>

Wednesday, March 5, 2003

Laptop hosed

Corporate field service came around and replaced the broken bottom
case of my laptop and debian boots. Yah! However running "find /
-name 'foo'" causes Linux to crash, and W2k doesn't even boot...
Field Service will eventually return to check it out. Until then and
an updated blosxom debian packagin
g and
genealogy will be on the back burner.


Tuesday, March 4, 2003

Laptop partly broken, Xdmcp to the rescue

My laptop took a header onto the floor and the corner of the case is
smashed up. If it is pressed back into shape, the monitor turns off
-- this makes it hard to type on.

Since the desktop configured just the way I like it as well as a
chroot debian/unstable environment for building debian packages I
wanted a way to get to the laptop from my other work (Compaq Deskpro
EN running Red Hat 8.0) and other home systems (specifically my wife's
Microsoft Windows 2000 laptop + cygwin).

The solution was to enable Xd
on the laptop and then connect to
it from the other system's X servers. Here are the steps.

  • On the laptop which uses kdm, edit /etc/kde2/kdmrc and look for
    the [Xdmcp] section and enable it. The line looks like this

    # Whether KDM should listen to XDMCP requests. Default is false for Debian.

  • Now edit /etc/kde2/kdm/Xaccess to allow access. Uncomment the two
    lines that look like this:

    * #any host can get a login window
    * CHOOSER BROADCAST #any indirect host can get a chooser

    You can tighten up security by enumerating all the systems you want
    access from. Since both of the networks my laptop connects to (home
    behind a NATting firewall and work's corpnet) are secure enough for me
    so I didn't bother.

  • Now restart kdm on the laptop, "/etc/init.d/kdm restart"

  • From the linux desktop, startup X and have it connect to my laptop's XDMCP:

    X -broadcast -query :1

    And in a few seconds there is the familar KDM login on ALT-F8.

  • From the Microsoft Windows 2000 desktop that has cygwin installed,
    startup X and have it connect to my laptop's XDMCP:

    X -broadcast -query :1

    And in a few seconds there is a window that contains the
    familar KDM login.

  • Performance is acceptable across WiFi.

Monday, March 3, 2003

debpackagetag blosxom plugin

I've created (well, heavily borrowed from href="">John Slee's googletag) a new Blosxom
plugin, href="">debpackagetag.
I've been putting links to's package search engine in href="">my
debian laptop blog entries and this saves a ton of typing.

For example type <debpackage>blosxom</debpackage> to
get a link to the debian page for blos