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Jan. 8th, 2014


Now microblogging as ysth on twister (an new, alpha decentralized microblogging service).

Jan. 1st, 2013 (long defunct, formerly hosted on now points here (also long defunct, or at least inactive).

Welcome, anybody.

Nov. 8th, 2010

More browsers (ubuntu)

This post is now very out of date. Someday I may update it :)

# Chromium Dev Channel (currently 9.0.570.1):

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chromium-daily/dev
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install chromium-browser

# Opera:

wget -O - | sudo apt-key add -
echo >/tmp/opera.list deb stable non-free
sudo cp /tmp/opera.list /etc/apt/sources.list.d
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install opera

# Firefox 4.0 beta:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:silverwave/one-daily-a-month-1  # lucid
# sudo add-apt-repository ppa:silverwave/one-daily-a-month-5  # maverick
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install firefox-4.0

Sep. 19th, 2010

Some haiku

standing by the shelf
a dragon guarding her hoard
all the books I love

a library shelf
tall, light colored, full of books
would that I had more time

I quite like haiku
arranging the syllables
in pleasing order

magic beyond all compare
keeping our food cold

Copyright 2010, Yitzchak Scott-Thoennes
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Oct. 31st, 2009

Daily poem: Melville Cane, End of Daylight-Saving

End of Daylight-Saving

When I was rich in April
They robbed me of an hour,
But, having many, many,
It was plucking one flower,
Or stealing one penny.

Brooks poured fast,
Flowers pushed thickly,
Hours slid past,—
All too quickly.

But brooks drain thin,
Flowers dry seedy,
Light draws in,
Now I'm needy.

The thief must have learned it
And, giving no warning,
Mysteriously returned it
One crisp morning.

When I was rich in April
Before the early leaves,
Long before this ditty,
I never thought of thieves,
Or that thieves felt pity.

From Snow Toward Evening, by Melville Cane
(probably included in an earlier volume and earlier collections, as well)


Oct. 7th, 2009

Not-so-daily poem: Michelangelo, Madrigal CIX 13

view poem in new window...


Nov. 23rd, 2008

Daily poem: Hugh MacDiarmid, In the children's hospital

In the children's hospital

'Does it matter? Losing your legs?' Siegfried Sassoon

Now let the legless boy show the great lady
How well he can manage his crutches.
It doesn't matter though the Sister objects,
'He's not used to them yet', when such is
The will of the Princess. Come, Tommy,
Try a few desperate steps through the ward.
Then the hand of Royalty will pat your head
And life suddenly cease to be hard.
For a couple of legs are surely no miss
When the loss leads to such an honour as this!
One knows, when one sees how jealous the rest
Of the children are, it's been all for the best! —
But would the sound of your sticks on the floor
Thundered in her skull for evermore!

by Hugh MacDiarmid


Aug. 25th, 2008

SSH tunnel humor

We name servers after types of animals. I see the following a lot, but for some reason this evening, I really registered it and it made me laugh:
ysth@cat:~$ logout
Connection to elephant closed.

Jul. 22nd, 2008

Registering at OSCON

I wanted to register tonight, if I could, to save time tomorrow; arrived about 7:45pm (just after the Tuesday Evening Extravaganza started). Big signs saying registration outside exhibit hall D.

Went there; big sign saying "Attendee & Press Self Check-In START HERE". Next to the sign, a row of ~15 laptops closed.

I open the nearest; it says enter your confirmation code; I do so; it says my badge is being printed - proceed to materials pickup #1.

I go to the materials pickup #1 sign across the room. This guy gives me a puzzled look and says "can I help you"? Turns out the laptops being closed was supposed to indicate registration wasn't open. (He was busy fiddling with the printer cables, but very friendly.)

I suggested they take the "start here" sign down. But they didn't. (He did print my badge and give me swag anyway).

(A friend comments: "That's good at least. I imagine if they have enough people like you they will fix their signage")

If they'd had regular monitors, turned off, I never would have dreamed of turning one on. But for a laptop to be closed seems to me a natural state, not necessarily indicative of being out of use.

Jul. 6th, 2008

Leap second

I've always been enchanted by the interaction between time and people. I get all excited when, as the result of long term trends:

in an extremely chaotic system, we all get to make seemingly arbitrary changes to our clocks. Such a change is coming at the end of this year.

Leap seconds occur on average every 2-3 years, due to the long-term slowing of the earth's rotation and the canonical second being based on astronomical observations that calculated an extremely accurate value - for the late 19th century "second". Oops. The presence or absence of a leap second is announced toward the beginning of January or July for the end of the following June or December, though provisions are made to allow "emergency" leap seconds being introduced at the end of March or September. They are decided by the International Earth Rotation Service (recently renamed the International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service, but still known as the IERS.)

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