stupid cat.

I’ve been on an organizing spree the past couple days. Did all my laundry, and 3 loads of towels – I had no idea we had that many towels, but apparently we do. Anyway, I decided that that wasn’t good enough. So then I started looking around and what exactly was cluttering my room. Turns out I had no less than 6 PC’s and 3 monitors in my room, doing absolutely nothing but bowing the middle of my desk. Some of these computers I haven’t run anything on in years, some are even older. I’ve got my first PC, still, for example. It’s a 25 MHz i386SX with 4 Megs of RAM, a 1X (actually, it might be a 2X, I’m not sure) CD-ROM, and a monster 200 Meg HardDrive.

Anyway. Long story short, I’ve thrown away 3 full computers that were junk for various reasons, and a 19″ Monitor that wouldn’t turn on for anything. And 6 CD drives. And I haven’t even bothered checking the floppy drives – I’m sure most of them don’t work. So now I’m consolidating. I’ve got an Athlon 700 that’s destined to be a Server (web, email, file, irc, ftp, SVN, am I forgetting something?), methinks. And a K6-300MHz that’ll be a router/fallback server to the Athlon. I’m still contemplating keeping the 386, mostly for nostalgic reasons.

Tired…. Cat chewed on the end of an IDE ribbon cable rendering it useless.

next one will be less rantish, I promise

Stupid teachers are teh dumbzor.

Last night was my first Networking Fundamentals class (note, not to be confused with my Cisco Networking classes, like the one I took last semester and its follow up, that I was going to take this semester). Anyway. The teacher is retarded. The class is “mostly taught using BlackBoard” [agh, cringe]. So we go in, and whats our first project? Installing Windows 2003 Server. “Hmmm,” I say, with the smallest possible detectable amount of interest “I guess I’ve never done that before”. Well, as it turns out, I still haven’t. With our Win2k3 install CD’s came a floppy disk [sigh]. Upon inserting this CD and floppy, the CD begins the windows install, and the floppy answers every single question that the installer asks, except for the serial key. So it was push the discs in, and wait for 40 minutes (!) with nothing to do while Windows installed itself getting all its input from the floppy. Wooo. Meanwhile the teacher walked around and helped people who couldn’t figure out how to reboot, who were trying to insert the floppy disk upside down, etc. All stuff I’d forgive in an “Entry to computers” class (of which there is one), but this isn’t that class…. or at least it shouldn’t be.

So after wasting an hour of my life, we get the computers running, and he tells us to put in some basic networking info, IP addresses, gateways and the like. Some people are struggling… I’m helping my partner while downloading gAIM and FireFox. Meanwhile, the teacher is giving a lecture with mistakes in it, “A MAC address is a unique 12 digit Hexidecimal [0-9 and A-F, where A = 10, etc] number. Don’t ask me how they can say it’s unique, cuz I don’t know.” Well, they’re said to be unique because its such a large number, and they aren’t just randomly assigned. Hardware vendors each have a few digits assigned to them, and those are always the first 6 digits. So that IBM’s network cards may have a MAC that starts with 00-0F-45-XX-XX-XX. And they’re free to fill in the X’s however they like. So this does give some order, and shows that MAC’s aren’t completely randomly assigned. But if IBM starts to get lazy (or just figure its not worth their trouble, they might assign the same XX-XX-XX twice. It’s not likely, but it’s certainly happened before and it can cause problems.

Other things like saying that “your computer’s hostname isn’t important, its just like a nickname” were just dead wrong. You can’t have two computers on the same network with the same hostname, one of them won’t be able to connect. And one of the questions these floppies answered for us was the hostname, so everyone’s was the same, and he couldn’t figure out why it wasn’t working.

I decided to leave early after I got a 34/35 on my “blackboard pre-test to see how much you know coming into the class”. The question I got wrong was: “Which of the following uses light to transmit data.” “A. Coax, B. Copper wire, C. Fiber Optic, D. RJ-45” I answered C, Fiber Optic and got it wrong. I was then told the correct answer was Fiber Optic.

In other, and much happier, news, I’m flying up to Berkeley on Oct 13 til the 17th to spend time with Clare. Cuz she’s awesome.

Chris: “send me the gay hobbit one”

Blackboard is the fscking devil. I feel this needs to be said at least once per semester. Blessed are you that need never cast your gaze before it’s unholy visage.

Seriously. BB is a crutch for lazy teachers who want to have some kind of online presence, but can’t figure out how to work (or figure out how to ask a friend to work) a webpage design program. They’re not really as complicated as they might sound… they’re sort of like glorified word processors.

Rant aside, classes are looking to be good so far this semester. My history teacher, Chris Johnson, is a very funny guy. He says he checks on occasion and that last semester for the first time ever, he got a sad face. He went on to make a long, dramatic, self-deprecating speech about how he always wondered if he was “inadequate”, but thankfully now, he knew for sure that he was in fact “woefully inadequate”. And that as of this semester he will strive to do better, he’s going to be reaching to achieve the level of simply “inadequate”, perhaps eventually attaining the title of “adquate” or maybe even someday “mediocre”. And the way he said it with such a hopeful glint in his eye, you just couldn’t help but smile. You just have to see this guy to appreciate him… he started the class saying “Ok, I have three funny things to tell you before we begin” (which ended up taking 20 minutes to tell) “The first is, and you probably didn’t need to know this, that I just had a colonoscopy the other day, and let me tell you, talk about uncomfortable. And the really weird thing is that they have this camera hooked up to a TV so that you can watch the inside of your colon or whatever I guess, and oddly enough, this sort of distracts you from the whole idea because it’s so strange in itself”. He then went on to talk about finding out that he’s on the NoFly List (great articles, btw) and how he had to prove that he’s not a terrorist.

Add in some comments about how Americans don’t pay as much attention to politics as they should, a couple stories about his “anti-militaristic, anti-establishment” boy scout troop that went streaking, skinny dipping, was his first experience with marijuana and the cause of him drinking kerosene from a bleach bottle… well, you can see why I like the guy. Oh yeah. He also tried to make the main book (the 70 something dollar one) reccommended a few semesters back, but got yelled at by the History Department, the Administration, and the Bookstore who all told him that he both *had* to have a required textbook and that he *had* to integrate it into the class. Well, he thinks that textbooks are a good aid to learning, but that most text-books aren’t the best source of information, and are too expensive for most college students besides, so he decided that the way he would integrate the book would be to put up 3 worksheets on his website. Each worksheet is from a different chapter of the book, and has 10 questions such as: “What ship sank in May 1915? Who sank it?” and instructions that to the effect of “just write the answers (you don’t need complete sentences) on a separate piece of paper. If you need to borrow a friend’s answers, *cough* I mean textbook to do so, I’ve got no problem with that. This is all just busywork that Administration makes me do. You don’t need to worry that you’re not going to learn in this class, but you also shouldn’t worry that you’re going to have to memorize a $70 textbook to do so.” Essentially saying, yes, the textbook is required, but if you feel like answering the worksheets in the next week or two, you can still take your book back for a full refund at the bookstore…

I approve. My Cisco class on the other hand is looking grim. It’s right after my C++ class at Palomar:San Marcos, and its a 20 minute drive normally, but I’ll be headed there during rush hour. It’s a self-paced class where attendance is mandatory (huh?). And the teacher seems to like Blackboard…

why aren’t I in charge?

Sometimes I wonder about people.

For example, there’s this organization called ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). ICANN is a corporation in charge of deciding what gets to be a Top Level Domain and isn’t.

Now forgive me if I’m telling you, dear reader, what you already know, but a basic Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) consists of three or more words, separated by periods – a host (usually a server), a domain, and a TLD.,,, etc. Back when the Internet was young and more or less exclusive to the US, there were only a few (six, actually) TLD’s:

  • .net
  • .com
  • .gov
  • .edu
  • .mil
  • .org

TLD’s were supervised by a government office called IANA. And in order to buy a domain name, say, you’d have to follow the guidelines for said TLD, commerce sites for .com, non-commercial organizations or individuals for .org, ISP’s for .net, etc. Then it was decided that These lowly 6 TLD’s were not enough (and that there was money to be made here…)! In 1998, this responsibility was handed off to ICANN, who has opened up all of the original 6 to anyone (with the exception of .mil and .gov) and since approved such useful TLD’s as:

  • .pro (for professionals […])
  • .aero (for people and companies dealing with … aviation…)
  • .coop (“cooperative-type organizations or a wholly owned subsidiary” – whatever that means… I guess its for Communes)
  • .info (for “informative websites”)
  • .museum (for, well… yeah.)
  • .biz (for businesses… but mostly just spam and porn sites)
  • .name (for individuals)

Of these TLD’s, anyone can apply for and get a Domain name for .biz, .name, .info, .coop with nothing but a name, a credit card, and some easily faked contact information. This essentially makes them worthless for what they were originally intended for (organizing internet addresses by content or purpose or allowing businesses with similar names to have the same domain name, with a different TLD) but has the happy side effect of costing people more money.

Afterall, (for example) Microsoft is hardly going to let some porn site buy the domain name. So there’s some money from every business that doesn’t want its name used in association with porn or something even worse. Imagine if some guy bought, and set it up to look just like a real Microsoft website, and took credit card information from people who thought they were buying software.

So now we come to the point. ICANN wants to setup the .xxx TLD. I’m sure I don’t have to explain what this would be for, but needless to say the conservatives (not just republicans!) are up in arms over it. The Bush administration has requested that this be held off and the idea re-examined due to overwhelming concerns that “pornographers will be given even more opportunities to flood our homes, libraries and society with pornography through the .xxx domain.” ICANN is a corporation with international members making its decisions, and even though they are non-profit, that doesn’t mean that its board members aren’t salaried. Leasing these TLD’s to other companies to sell makes them plenty of money. Of the newer TLD’s only 3 of them were leased to companies who run any kind of verification to see if you’re running a website with the TLD’s goals in mind. The others (including the older .net, .com, and .org) have lost much of their value.

So on the one hand, the US government is screaming censorship (what exactly constitutes .xxx? Would a nude picture of myself be porn? the sculpture of “David”?) while the ICANN is seeing dollar signs. Meanwhile, very few people seem to be making the real argument, namely “Why the hell would we even have a .xxx TLD to begin with, let alone all these other retarded ones? Porn sites can still register on whichever TLD they want, and legitimate businesses will still have to register with the new TLD just to keep scammers and the like from tricking their users/customers.”

So yeah, sometimes I wonder about people.

There’s no emoticon for…

Doing some work on the new homepage… with the lull in last weekends gaming, it sorta gives me an excuse to work on programming for something other than DiceBot.

I don’t much feel like postng though – Clare leaves in about a week, and school starts a week from today

“For thousands of years, people thought the moon was made of cheese.
But then we went there and found out it was made of rock.
We haven’t been back since.

Behold the power of Cheese.

stolen from Ambler

( ) smoked a cigarette
( ) smoked a cigar
( ) made out with a member of the same sex
( ) crashed a friend’s car
( ) stolen a car
(X) been in love
(X) been dumped
(X) shoplifted
(X) been fired
(X) been in a fist fight
( ) snuck out of my parent’s house
(X) had feelings for someone who didn’t have them back
( ) been arrested
( ) made out with a stranger
( ) gone on a blind date — not blind, as I knew who he was, but we had never really Actually talked to each other – and that didn’t change on the date
(X) lied to a friend
(X) had a crush on a teacher
(X) skipped school
( ) slept with a co-worker
( ) seen someone die
(X) had a crush on one of your internet friends
( ) been to Canada
(X) been to Mexico
(X) been on a plane
( ) been to Europe
( ) thrown up in a bar
(X) purposely set a part of yourself on fire
( ) eaten Sushi
( ) been snowboarding
(X) met someone in person from the internet
( ) been moshing at a concert
( ) been in an abusive relationship
(X) taken painkillers
(X) love or miss someone right now
(X) laid on your back and watched cloud shapes go by
( ) made a snow angel
(X) flown a kite
(X) built a sand castle
(X) gone puddle jumping
( ) played dress up
(X) jumped into a pile of leaves – And how.
(X) gone sledding
(X) cheated while playing a game
(X) been lonely
(X) fallen asleep at work/school
( ) used a fake id
(X) watched the sun set
(X) felt an earthquake
(X) touched a snake
(X) been tickled
( ) been robbed
( ) robbed someone
(X) been misunderstood
(X) pet a reindeer/goat
(X) won a contest
(X) run a red light
( ) been suspended from school
(X) had detention
(X) been in a car accident
(X) felt like an outcast
( ) eaten a whole pint of ice cream in one night
(X) had deja vu
(X) had deja vu
(X) danced in the moonlight
(X) hated the way you look
(X) witnessed a crime
( ) pole danced
(X) questioned your heart
(X) been obsessed with post-it notes
(X) squished barefoot through mud
(X) been lost
(X) been to the opposite side of the country -eh, close enough…
(X) swam in the ocean
(X) felt like dying
(X) cried yourself to sleep
(X) played cops and robbers
(X) recently colored with crayons/colored pencils/markers
( ) sung karaoke
(X) paid for a meal with only coins
(X) done something you told yourself you wouldn’t
(X) made prank phone calls
( ) laughed until some kind of beverage came out of your nose
(X) caught a snowflake on your tongue
(X) kissed in the rain
( ) been kissed under a mistletoe
(X) watched the sun set with someone you care about
(X) blown bubbles
(X) made a bonfire on the beach
(X) crashed a party – a baby shower, no less
(X) have traveled more than 5 days in a car full of people
(X) gone rollerskating
(X) had a wish come true
( ) worn pearls
(X) jumped off a bridge
( ) screamed penis in class
(X) ate dog/cat food
(X) told a complete stranger you loved them
(X) sang in the shower
( ) had a little black dress
(X) had a dream that you married someone
( ) glued your hand to something
( ) got your tongue stuck to a flag pole
( ) kissed a fish
( ) worn the opposite sex’s clothes
( ) been a cheerleader
(X) sat on a roof top
(X) screamed at the top of your lungs
( ) done a one-handed cartwheel
(X) talked on the phone for more than 6 hours — Yes, 6 hours sounds about right… that was an expensive phone bill
(X) stayed up all night
(X) didn’t take a shower for a week
(X) picked and ate an apple right off the tree – Not an apple… but other fruit…
(X) climbed a tree
(X) had a tree house
( ) are scared to watch scary movies alone
( ) believe in ghosts
( ) have more than 15 pairs of shoes
( ) worn a really ugly outfit to school just to see what others say
(X) gone streaking
(X) played ding-dong-ditch
(X) played chicken fight
(X) been pushed into a pool with all your clothes on
(X) been told you’re hot by a complete stranger – According to, thanks to mollie…
( ) broken a bone
(X) been easily amused
( ) caught a fish then ate it
(X) caught a butterfly
(X) laughed so hard you cried
(X) cried so hard you laughed
(X) mooned/flashed someone
(X) had someone moon/flash you
(X) cheated on a test
(X) forgotten someone’s name
(X) French braided someones hair – I’ve attempted it… The result was… interesting
(X) gone skinny dipping

blast from the past

So I’m opening at work the yesterday. First customer of the day? No fucking shit, its CHP Officer Joe Wolf, the guy who pulled me over for speeding down the 15 a few years ago (when I got 2 speeding tickets in 2 days). When he pulled me over he gave me quite the verbal beating, calling me all kinds of stupid and swearing and all that jazz… then he didn’t turn in the ticket he wrote for me, sparing me from having a speeding ticket on my record and paying another what $200?

He was a pretty nice guy though.. very friendly… And he certainly (unsurpisingly) didn’t recognize me, but I definitely recognized him as soon as I looked up and saw his face and his name…

dbot stuff: Init subsystem has basic functionality… meaning it catches player rolls and sorts them in descending order. Basically it works like this now:

Db: DM has called for Initiative! Round: 1
P1: !d20+3
Db: P1, d20+3: 8
P2: !d20+5Db:
P2, d20+5: 23
P3: !d20-2
Db: P3, d20-2: -1
DM: end init
Db: Initiative rolling is now over for round: 1!
Db: Initiative order is: [ P2(23), P1(8), P3(-1) ]
DM: INIT next
Db: DM has called for Initiative!  Round: 2

….. etc.

If you have any input as to making it look more clear [do you like the Name(#) notation?], email me. Upcoming functionality for this subsystem includes adding (or removing) an Init roll after “end init” has been called and resorting. Also planned is support for multiple init rolls (like when I roll for 10 kobolds)… which I’m trying to think of the best way to handle. For example do I want it to just say Kobolds`(#) 10 sorted times? Because how do we keep track of which kobold is which? Not that we (I) always do the best job at keeping track now… but I don’t want to miss an oppurtunity to do it the Right Way, if I can.

whee, another dbot post

dbot should now be bug-free (as far as current functionality goes, at least. I’m sure I’ll be adding more bugs as I go…)

that means the 6d20d20 bug is fixed, as is the weird “2d1+2=6 vs 2d1+2=4” bug. Now the way it works is this: if you want to roll a bunch of dice, and add the modifier to each one, you do 2d1++2 (note the double plus), otherwise if you just add the modifier once, its 2d1+1 (same thing for -‘s)

Now, onto the todo list…


Have the day off today, so I’ve been hacking away at

I’ve managed to tag a couple bugs, and add a couple features

First of all, you can now private message dbot to roll dice, outside of the channel. It PM’s you back with the result, and also sends it to the DM, as well. Second, it ‘highlights’ natural 1’s by putting the roll in “”‘s. If you can think of a better way to highlight the ‘natural’ numbers, without using IRC color or bold, let me know. Those are the biggest features you’ll notice.
It can now also join new channels, change nicknames and forward messages from the DM (why? who knows, it was easy to implement)

Fixed bugs:
Dbot no longer lets you input numbers over 3 digits (>999). Actually, its been this way since I started it; essentially if you rolled 1234d1234 it would give you the result of 123d123. Now it just stares at you blankly and says nothing. If you can give me a good reason to raise this number (999), go ahead, but there’s gotta be a cap somewhere, and I can’t see ever needing a number that high anyway.

Bugs I’m currently working on:
There’s one bug I’m working on right now, its kind of weird. When you are rolling multiple dice (eg. 6d20) dicebot will let you type 6d20d21. The result is the same, it only rolls the first dN, and I doubt anyone would ever accidentally type Z#dXdY. But its annoying enough that I’m working on it anyway.
Next, there’s one that I’m not sure is a bug. If you roll 2d1+2, your result is 6. This means that dbot is rolling (d1+2)+(d1+2)=6 But you might have actually meant roll 2d1, then add 2 to the result. In which case the answer should be 4, not 6. The trouble is, is this behavior actually incorrect? Again, you guys should let me know what you think.

Help system (“dbot, what’s a hide check consist of?”).
Initiative tracker (who’s turn; when does that bless spell wear off again?
Campaign tracker (dbot, what are the names of the important NPC’s we’ve met, and why are they important?)
Finishing the Math section.
Anything else?

Let me know if we’ve talked about something and I forgot it, or if you have another good idea.