maradydd: (Default)
The box that sits on appears to have fallen off the internet. (DNS believes it exists, but it's not answering pings.) It may be a little bit before it's fixed, as one of the lovely and talented folks who maintains it is currently in the hospital with an icky case of cellulitis, and I don't expect him or his equally lovely and talented wife to be pulling sysadmin duty when they have more pressing things to worry about.

For the meantime, please direct personal email to clonearmy at gmail, work email to the usual place work email goes. (If you should know it, you probably already do.)

Thanks, and sorry for the hassle.

ETA: Looks like it's back up and running as of approximately 6AM PST.
maradydd: (bad post!)
Yes, I am ignoring you. September and October are when the early-spring conferences have their deadlines, and I have somewhere between four and six papers to finish between now and Halloween. You do the math. (The research is done, I just have to get it out of my head and my notes and into LaTeX in a form that other people can recognise.) Yes, you can read them, I'll post links to the tech-report versions as they happen. No, there is not much you can do to help, other than leaving me alone, unless you are here to give me a back massage, are going out to pick up food for me so that I don't have to get up, or can send me backward in time. Yes, I miss you. No, I am not dead. Yes, I will be back in touch when I have time to breathe again.

Coffee still works, kind of. I am contemplating alternative delivery mechanisms with better bioavailability.

And I get to do all this over again next April/May for the fall conferences. YAY.

(this post only brought to you by the fact that FC extended their deadline a week.)
maradydd: (Default)
Whoever came up with apport -- the Ubuntu crash-reporting system -- is an unsung genius. Crash reporting isn't anything new, of course, but crash reporting that opens up a ticket in Launchpad and lets you, the user, customise the report and follow the problem-remediation on the web is elegant brilliance. Quality assurance that provides some level of accountability to the user reporting the problem? Who'd'a thunk?

Amazing what you can get your users to do with just a little presumption of good faith, innit.

Also, whoever came up with the idea of having apport report package installation failures -- those of us who have ever spent time in dependency hell salute you. If I ever meet you, I'm buying you a beer.

(This post brought to you by the karmic dev build.)
maradydd: (Default)
For some reason which is beyond my ken, my entire AIM buddy list has deleted itself.

If you're still using AIM and have me on your contact list, would you be so kind as to ping me so that I can re-add you? Thanks muchly.

ETA: Yeah, my "do not disturb" flag is up. For this, go ahead and ping me anyway, it's cool.
maradydd: (Default)
What's the deal with people using Facebook messaging in lieu of email these days? I don't understand this phenomenon, and I don't like it.

Just so everyone knows: I rarely use Facebook. My account there exists only because I needed one to do some development there for work. It might look like I use Facebook, but that's only because I have my Twitter client set up to push messages to Facebook (in point of fact, I set this up when I configured the client and promptly forgot about it, and was then surprised to get a mess of Facebook status replies). If you send me a message via Facebook, whether by scribbling on my Wall or sending a private message, assume that I either won't see it at all, or won't see it for a week or more.

I have three email addresses. One is my personal email, one is my work email, one is a dumping-ground account that gets a whole lot of mailing list traffic that I really don't have time to read. Where do you think Facebook notifications go? If you guessed the third one, hurray, you win a No-Prize. Those itty-bitty status notifications get drowned in a sea of bug reports and developer chatter, maybe three to five percent of which I actually read. Stuff gets batch-deleted every week or so, and it's easy for the only indication that a Facebook message has arrived to get lost in the noise.

"But, Meredith," I hear you say, "why not just point notifications at an address you actually check?" Simple enough: like Bartleby the Scrivener, I would prefer not to. I don't like the interface, application-layer protocols riding over other application-layer protocols is a stupid implementation choice, and if you think I trust Facebook with my private data, I've got some beautiful oceanfront property in Luxembourg I'd love to sell you. I'm twitchy enough about gmail. I expect to have control over my email, and anything I expect to have control over lives in a place where I can shred(1) it if the need arises. Data on Facebook is not data I own, plain and simple. (Neither is data on gmail, for that matter. Or LiveJournal, but I've got enough time invested in this blog and the community it's part of that leaving would be a hassle, so I censor myself, and hate myself for doing it.)

If Facebook someday decides to set up an SMTP gateway, so that I can reply directly to, then perhaps I'll change my mind. I doubt that will ever happen, though; they're heavily invested in their walled garden and don't seem too inclined to change that. (Perhaps I could have done something about it if I'd taken that job there, but I'm pursuing academic goals instead, and that door is closed. If you're reading this, Larry, I genuinely am sorry; I think I would have enjoyed working with you, but I have to follow this dream.)

This is a facet of today's Internet that worries me. On the one hand we've got Web 2.0 sites like Twitter, Flickr and Amazon publishing data and providing services via openly documented formats that I can read, use, and mash up any way I like ... and on the other, we've got Facebook and MySpace building extremely large ghettos on top of privately documented protocols that lock users into set patterns of behaviour. I don't like this. It stifles my creativity and harshes my mellow. It might be a nice-looking ghetto ... but it's still a ghetto.

/me sighs. Should I implement SMTP in the Facebook dialect of Javascript? I probably could; some psychopath (and I mean that as a compliment) deployed IPv6 over Social Networks there, and if my steel sieve of a memory serves, SMTP can be modeled with either the same computational mechanism as IPv6 or a weaker one. I expect it's feasible, but I don't expect to like it. (Besides, it'd be a hell of a way to ship out lots and lots of spam. I'm sure Facebook would appreciate that.)

So, yeah. If you want to send me a private message and actually have me read it, suck it up and send me an email.
maradydd: (Default)
Dear everyone,

If you are planning on committing suicide via overdose, for fuck's sake do not do it with anticholinergics. Anticholinergics are otherwise known as "deliriants" for very, very good reason. If you want to die confused and terrified while your blood pressure pingpongs around out of control, anticholinergics are an extremely effective way of accomplishing that. If you're lucky, the rapid swings in blood pressure will trigger a heart attack (which is also not a lot of fun, especially when you can't tell what's real and what isn't); if not, you're likely to end up in a coma with a failing liver.

Seriously, just don't. It will suck for you, it will suck for whoever finds you while you are still alive and it will suck for the medical professionals who end up treating you. Do yourself a favour: call a friend, call a suicide hotline. You can even call me if you can deal with someone talking you out of it with logic and being pretty much entirely unemotional about the situation.

But yeah, fuck anticholinergics in the ear.

ETA: thanks [ profile] ephermata for just generally being awesome


maradydd: (Default)

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