Goodbye OpenSUSE. Hello Fedora.

It seems obvious that I just can't commit. I just can't commit to a single Linux distribution. I run different flavors on different systems, but even on my desktop, relationships are short-lived. Most recently, I was running OpenSUSE and you know, it was going along pretty good. We seemed like a good fit. And then, one day, I find myself looking at other desktops. And then, without really thinking about it much, I'm downloading an ISO image, burning it to a disk, and almost absentmindedly slipping it into the DVD drive.  I keep my home files on a separate partition. …

No One To Vote For

As we head into a provincial election, I hear once again the voices of people saying they are tired of their politicians and because of that, there is no point in voting. Some claim that spoiling a ballot is a powerful message to those in power. Others will just stay home, suggesting that nothing changes anyhow.   Here's the thing. If you don't make a choice, a choice will be made for you. If you don't vote, you don't have a voice.   If you can't vote for, the vote against. Find the one candidate you hate less than all …

Despicable Me Minion Rush Bonus Codes

I've got two kids who are huge fans of the tablet game, Minion Rush, also known as Despicable Me and, of course, based on the animated movie by the same name. It's a great little game where you control one of Gru's minions as he races around various locations such as Gru's labs, the beach, the mall, or downtown suberbia, collecting bananas a doing despicable things. The latter essentially involves knocking other minions around and off the running platforms. You get to face off against other villains like Vector, El Macho, and an evil little girl named Meena attacking you …

And I would walk a thousand miles

A couple of years ago, I decided that I was going to get in shape. I wasn't in what I'd call terrible shape, but I wasn't 25 years old anymore either. People in my family tend to be long-lived, regardless of how we live it seems, but only if we manage to avoid heart attacks. Heart attacks are bad. And so, the thought that I might be getting a little to heavy and spending too much time just sitting clicked one day. My life tends to be a little stressful (maybe a lot) and I was now over 50 with …

Prior Art and the Turtle

Way back in 2006, I gave a presentation that I titled "Prior Art and the Turtle". It had to do with the development of open source software but it could apply to any number of human endeavours where we build on the work of those who came before us. I've attached the slides as images.  When we talk about how wonderful the community development model of open source software is, someone invariably quotes Isaac Newton from 1676. "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." Let's jump back in time to 1651 when a …

Eccentric Pithiness

There are things you find yourself saying time and again throughout your life that, after a while, starts to sound like a quote you should be attributing to someone. And so you go looking for that quote and you can't find it. Either you were wickedly clever and spectacularly erudite, you conclude, or you took the heart of someone else's pithy rendering and ran it through your mental coffee grinder so many times that now it really is yours. Or not. One bit of wisdom I'm fond of repeating is "Cultivate your eccentricities early in life. That way, when you …

Shell Scripting: Really Programming The Shell

When you open up a terminal window on your Linux system, you are opening up a programming environment. While it may seem like just this place where you type commands to list your files or check on the amount of disk space you have left, the shell is a real programming language. True story. You even have access to constructs like “if…then…else,” while and for loops, case statements, and more. In case you're wondering how we got here, this is part 4 in a series. Just to give you an idea of what I'm talking about, here’s a little script …

The One True God, 24 Hours A Day, In Stereo! (CatholiCard)

 Luckily, she has CatholiCard, and direct access to God himself. As she enters the Church and kneels in the plastic pew for one to discuss her problems with the Creator, she soon realizes there is one additional problem to consider. Can she afford it? You, on the other hand, can certainly afford it because this one is a completely free eBook, ready for your reading pleasure. It's also DRM-free, so lots of free-ness associated with this one! Just click here to get your copy. Hey!  While you're here, check out my other eBooks on the site.

What is it that you do?

One of the hardest questions that I have to answer is "what is it that you do?" What that question really means, of course, is "what do you do for a living?" I was talking to someone recently, who occasionally hires me to do 'systems stuff', and he asked me essentially that question. He said, "if you could describe in one sentence what it is you do that would make you special (from a hiring perspective), what would you say?" It felt sort of like an interview, without the formalities. I've given lots of different answers to that question, and …