« Bill-centric? Bill-licious? Bill-bastic? | Main | September 11, 2001 »

Voschlag = suggestion

sagacious \Sa*ga'cious\, a. [L. sagax, sagacis, akin to sagire to perceive quickly or keenly, and probably to E. seek. See Seek, and cf. Presage.]

  1. Of quick sense perceptions; keen-scented; skilled in following a trail.

    Sagacious of his quarry from so far. --Milton.

  2. Hence, of quick intellectual perceptions; of keen penetration and judgment; discerning and judicious; knowing; far-sighted; shrewd; sage; wise; as, a sagacious man; a sagacious remark.

    Instinct . . . makes them, many times, sagacious above our apprehension. --Dr. H. More.
    Only sagacious heads light on these observations, and reduce them into general propositions. --Locke.

Syn: See Shrewd. -- Sa*ga"cious*ly, adv. -- Sa*ga"cious*ness, n.


Tracy and I bought 3 CDs while in CA for our driving pleasure since we were driving all over the place and couldn't get a consistent radio station for more than 30-40 miles.

  • Enya: The Memory of Trees. More of the same classic Enya style. Good trance-like music for those mellow coding days.

  • George Winston: Summer. Piano stuff. I kinda tuned it out in the "background classical elevator muzak" category when we played it in the car, so I can't really comment on it intelligently.

  • Various: Friends again, songs from the show Friends. A few good songs, and some funny clips from the show. I can see a small number of those songs making it into a regular listening schedule.

After ripping these three CD's into MP3s, I'm still only using 38%
of my disk (a 45GB disk) that I bought specifically for music. A rough count shows that I have about 266 CDs encoded as MP3s. This still leaves me plenty of space to re-encode all my music in .ogg format when the ogg/vorbis encoder goes stable. Yummy!


My server went catatonic at some point while I was gone (possibly Wednesday). I found it this way when I returned Saturday evening. According to the logs, the server was still functioning, but it was extremely slow in responding from the net (such that a "GET / HTTP/1.0" effectively never returned anything, and ssh would hang while connecting). So I power cycled it.

I don't quite know what happened -- I suppose that it has done this before when I was running the dual NIC configuration, but according to Don, it went really, really, r e a l l y sloooowwww before it died. This unfortunately happened on the day that fhffl.com was doing their draft, and it screwed up the process royally. Doh. :-(

Apparently, Don and Ed realized part way through the process that they had a CVS checked-out copy of slightly older files on Don's laptop, and so he fired up apache and ran the rest of the draft from there. Still a bummer, though.

This also screwed up John's access to his e-mail. Double doh. :-(

While I'm certainly happy to provide these services to my friends, it does say something that I don't use these services myself -- I pay someone to host squyres.com's e-mail and important web sites (my friends all know this -- Don and John were just unfortunately burned by this). I don't run anything like a production environment, nor do I want to (at least not out of my home). For example, I don't want the rest of my family's e-mail to be affected if/when I need to take my server down for maintenance. Indeed, in the (literally) years that I've had the squyres.com e-mail hosted with Pennyhost, I've really only had one problem
-- my dad's mail went into the void for about 2-3 days when Pennyhost moved over to new servers (but no one else's mail was affected --
). The rest has been essentially 24/7 continued service.

Indeed, my DSL modem has been crashing a bit recently (don't know why that is happening, either...). Although this is the first problem that I've had with the server itself, I'm not around all the time to make quick fixes when something goes wrong.


outpost.com is quickly falling out of favor with me. I ordered 2 things for Darrell's birthday last Monday. I had them directly shipped to Darrell instead of to me.

I came home last night to find a call from outpost.com calling to verify the order because I had it shipped to someone else. That was initially annoying because it had delayed the shipment, but then I thought about it, and was actually pleased with outpost.com for doing this -- they were looking after my interests, after all. So that was ok.

The message included a phone number, which I called. I gave my order number and said that I wanted to confirm the order. "Oh, that's already been approved," the woman told me. "We checked with your credit card company."

WTF?!


  1. Why would they check with my credit card company for verification of my order?
  2. What exactly did my credit card company tell them? They certainly know nothing of Darrell's address.

Of course, I didn't think of these questions until after I had hung up. But it's still somewhat annoying.

Even worse, only one of the items that I ordered was shipped. The other was "out of stock", even though it was clearly "in stock" when I ordered it on Monday (at least, that's what their web site said!). And then to add insult to injury, outpost.com doesn't know when they will get any more of this second item -- "The manufacturer hasn't informed us of when we'll get more."

Grrr...


So Darrell has a ReplayTV unit and was expounding on its greatness while we were there last week. So I went on the web while watching the ND/Nebraska game (and why not? The game was barely worth watching...) and checked out their web site. It seems that just this past week they announced a new model -- the 7000.

It certainly seems impressive, and the fact that it carries no monthly fee is compelling. Especially since TiVo's future is uncertain. Then I noticed the price tag -- starting at $700. Yow.

I'm also unclear how it works with my cable receiver box. Darrell says that it works via RS232 or IR relaying to the receiver box. I don't quite know how the RS232 would work (there's so many different cable receivers out there; I can't imagine that they interface to all of them, unless there's an industry standard interface, but I kinda doubt it), and D says that the IR relaying is somewhat shaky. Hmm.

There's no reason to act on this impulse right away. Indeed, seeing Darrell's impressive setup gives a lot of food for thought about how I want to do my home entertainment center anyway. Heck, Tracy and I spent an extended lunch talking about possibilities for a whole-home digital entertainment system at some random Irish pub last week. This will take time and a lot of thought/planning.


I should mention the ND/Nebraska game. The first quarter was dismal. Dismal, dismal, dismal. It really showed that this was our first game of the season, and Nebraska's third.

Our defense woke up in the second half and generally did a pretty good job. But our offense continued to suck throughout the whole game (pretty much the story of last year...). I'm not sure that I agree with this while 2-QB strategy; it can be tough for a team to sync up with 2 different QB's. You can tell that we have young QB's; they don't have a lot of experience and need to calm their game down a bit.

Granted, Nebraska is a very good team. As a rule, I don't bash on the ND football team, especially since I know just how hard it is to be an NCAA athlete at ND (read: extremely difficult, both academically and athletically). But some refinement is definitely necessary, and darn quick. It would have been nice to be able to score one more time in the fourth quarter.

We'll see what happens with the rest of the season.


This past week, I was traveling and had no access to the internet. I only had my laptop with me. I was playing around with jam (the make-redux thingy) during various down-times throughout the week. Since I had a small screen, I was using lynx (a text-based web browser) to read their docs (which are in HTML). There are no images in the docs, and even if there were, they wouldn't have mattered much to what I was trying to do (read and re-read textual information).

Later in the week, I accidentally had Netscape (or Konquerer --
can't remember which) up, so I brought up the jam docs in that instead. I was amazed at the visual difference. The presentation of the same text with the same HTML in lynx vs. Konq/Nets was enormous. I found the text much easier to read in Konq/Nets. I liken the difference to coding in plain vi vs. coding in colorized emacs or vim. Even though one intellectually knows that colorizing keywords and the like will "help", you can't truly appreciate the difference and assistance that proper syntax-hilighting does for code until you start using it regularly (i.e., it's an enormous help, no matter how good of a programmer you are).

Here's some of the things that I noticed:

  • lynx uses the same colors for multiple things (I'm sure that you can change this, but I was going with the defaults -- i.e., what most users see)

  • lynx does not visually separate between <LI> items (and possibly some other things; I didn't compare closely)

  • lynx does not show "." or numbers to start each <LI> item (<UL> vs. <OL>)

K/N pretty much does the opposite of what I mention above. As a result, I immediately switched to K/N for reading the docs because it made the job of reading much easier.

I fired off an e-mail to Jeremiah (who uses lynx almost religiously). We frequently tease him about using lynx, and he's almost always had good answers to our teasing along the lines of "lynx doesn't crash", and "lynx is pretty solid and reliable", and "lynx is a lot faster" (although that last one is less important with generally faster machines these days). I asked him the following questions:

  • Have you experienced this? (the loss of textual information due to presentation)

  • Have you ever compared the output of the same HTML between lynx and a gui browser? (since he generally browses text-heavy web sites when he surfs, such as news sites and the like)

I'm genuinely curious. Even though I have only traditionally used lynx for quick-read kinds of things (like docs on a local hard drive), I will probably not continue this practice, and use something like K/N in the future because of this experience.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

About

This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 9, 2001 9:47 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Bill-centric? Bill-licious? Bill-bastic?.

The next post in this blog is September 11, 2001.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

Powered by
Movable Type 3.34