mdlbear: the positively imaginary half of a cubic mandelbrot set (Default)
[personal profile] mdlbear

I'm still not getting as much real work done as I need to, so I'm still down on myself as usual, but I've gotten a few, mostly less important, things done.

I actually did a little hacking this week: we wanted to put the music collection onto an mp3 player for m, so I had to transcode the existing collection, most of which is in ogg vorbis. I realized that I could shrink them considerably in the process, which got all the folk and filk in under 20GB. The whole thing will almost certainly come in under 64GB, and micro SD cards that size are getting cheap. There was a moderate amount of bash scripting involved. There will be even more next time; the server is about a quarter the speed of my fastest laptop.

I seem to be the official household recipient for dead or dubious electronics. It's not that I'm necessarily capable of fixing it, just that I'm the only one who might consider it worth attempting. Not that I actually do attempt it in all cases; that's why I also maintain the household's collection of dead phones and tablets. However, I've gotten pretty good at simple laptop repair and linux installs.

Top link for the week goes to The Ultimate Rain Sound Generator, which includes a very effective conversation-blocker setting. If you prefer something other than rain its parent site,, has an enormous number of alternatives. Done by Stéphane Pigeon, who also built (the internet has a cat)Purrli.

Also, .wtf is a top-level domain. WTF??!

Notes & links:

  * up 6:20; S=;
  * transcoding in parallel on Cygnus.  Seems to be somewhat faster than nova.  Starting
    from the other end.  Significantly faster.  I'll use it to do the highest-priority
    filk directories.
  @ The The Ultimate Rain Sound Generator does a very good job of blocking conversations
    in the LR
  * Rite Aid.  L's prescriptions, plus one for C from Friday.  She doesn't have anything
    there that wants a refill; she'll have to either ask her Dr or have me do it.
  % transcoding without --quiet is very distracting.  So is doing things in pieces and
    watching for progress.
    : Talis_Kimberley/The_Hearth_And_The_Hive/ only appears to have 2 songs:
      => not clear whether the problem was the file with an apostrophe in it.
         that was a red herring.  Real problem was that it was always copying mp3s
  * 4:30 MAC clinic (front desk)
  * more transcoding.  Should probably have done more automation,

  * up 6:15ish; W=196.6, S=6.11;
    % weight down -- must be the change to a diabetic-like diet.
  * Rest Stop for dinner:  N's bday, farewell to m.
  : list of unfinished directories is down to 8 -- it'll work.  Total ~18G
  : done.  Copying onto cygnus via rsync, and a 32G usb stick on nova via cp.
  : DAMN! forgot to plug Molly in last night.  Could have sworn I had, and didn't check
    when C reminded me.  Grumph.  Well, there's 130 miles left; not a problem.
  * load mp3s onto card.  Mail and songbook are in backpack
  * Bring down N's mail, m's songbook and mp3s, ~ G's picture (already there)
  * go down to RS; stay for dinner.  N's b'day
    -> the player is a Sandisk Clip Jam, with annoyingly tiny and finicky controls, but it
       can in fact read the SD card! Tiny little thumb pad.  My mp3s aren't properly
       tagged - titles only.  Can derive artist and album from directories.
  * spent most of afternoon helping j with math and science tests
  ~ 3:30 MAC clinic (V)
  * pick up SD card
  : also came back with Starshine, m's old Lenovo.  I have become the household's official
    recipient of all old/broken computers; that means among other things that there are
    always laptops to lend out.

  * Up 6am; S=6:14;
  * AX payment due 0118Fr => Paid 
  * booted up Starshine.  The keyboard is absolute crap; the power connector is flaky.  It
    has a copy of Windows 8.1 on it, apparently unused because I appear to be the only
    user.  Ubuntu 16.04.  Before running Windows the partitions were recognized as NTFS
    but dirty.  Afterward, they're not visible at all.  May have to do with fast startup.
    How to disable Fast Startup in Windows 10, 8 and 8.1
    How to disable or enable Fast Startup in Windows 8.1
    => yup, that was it.
    => upgrading Ubuntu.  Hoping that's the right move.
  * 2:40 C Dr. Rochier
  * upgrade going very slowly in the "searching for obsolete software" step, but it _is_
    progressing -> eventually finished.
  : L and D' went to the food bank; came back with veggies
  * I made chili for dinner - one box kit (just the spice packet and half the cayenne), a
    little wine, garlic, onion, two cans of mixed beans and one of tomatoes with chilis.
  % 10ish sleepy.  Drifted off in the bedroom recliner with Desti in my lap

  * up 5:30ish; W=196.6, S=5:47;
  @ bjoernkarmann/project_alias:
    Alias is a teachable “parasite” that is designed to give users more control over their
    smart assistants, both when it comes to customisation and privacy. Through a simple
    app the user can train Alias to react on a custom wake-word/sound, and once trained,
    Alias can take control over your home assistant by activating it for you.
  @ This Science Fiction Novelist Created a Feminist Language from Scratch (ysabetwordsmith | Suzette Haden Elgin and Láadan)
  @ Brannock Device History: A Machine That Measures Feet (archangelbeth)
  & 8ish possibly too late taking out the garbage.  Growf.  Broke a fingernail.  Of course
  : N leaving for UT; returning Sunday.
  * 9am zoom call with MC (DDG)
    => They'll get back to me by next Friday about whether I move on to the next step,
       which is a 20-hour project pulled from the project 1 submissions.
  @ Stéphane Pigeon | Sound Design The guy behind Purrli and turns out also to have
    developed the factory presets on several newer versions of my old Roland Juno synth
    -> The Ultimate Rain Sound Generator includes a very effective conversation
       blocker setting.
  * Music.  Fairly long noodle, The Fox, and Wheelin'
  : electrician here for the mini-split.  I worked a little on the garage back door, and
    found the delta66 and the monitors.  Not that I have any idea where to put them.
  * 3pm C MACC (V)
  * Asparagus chicken for dinner.  Came out very well.
  * Music:  Ship of Stone, The Bears, The Travelers, The Owl and the Pussycat
  * humrira

  * up 6ish; S=5:47;
  : squished a cockroach in the kitchen, on the edge of the counter by the coffee setup.
    Just what I f***ng need. => ordered 5lb of diatomaceous earth
  % Didn't remember to check Molly last night until I was already in bed -- naturally she
    _wasn't_ plugged in.  Again.
  @ Engineering Management: The Pendulum Or The Ladder – .wtf is a TLD?!
    .wtf - Wikipedia
  % back's been hurting most of the morning -> meloxicam
  @ Mail-in-a-Box
  @ It's Official: Open-Plan Offices Are Now the Dumbest Management Fad of All Time | (warning! auto-play video ad even with 10 trackers blocked)
  * out for a brief walk with D'.  Nautilus and back.
  * email Mom with known schedule for spring so she can plan a trip out
    -> note that there do not appear to be any direct flights, which is a problem.
  $ $10 to for premium access.
  @ Signal v Noise exits Medium
    " Traditional blogs might have swung out of favor, as we all discovered the benefits
      of social media and aggregating platforms, but we think they’re about to swing back
      in style, as we all discover the real costs and problems brought by such
      centralization. "
  @ 'Loverless' feat. George the cat - Ayleen O'Hanlon - YouTube
    Loverless (including lyrics) | Ayleen O'Hanlon
  % very congested -- nose almost completely plugged, even after neti a few hours ago
  % felt cold; turned up the electric blanket.  woke up 1ish, turned it off, went back to
    sleep.  Probably came down with my usual winter cold.

  * up 7ish; S=7:21; 
  * AX payment due 0118Fr => Paid 0115
  * 10:30 (actually 12:05 due to miscommunication) call from recruiter -
    3-6 mo contract at Amazon.  I wonder if I can go back.  I suspect not.
  * C's Samsung 10" tablet is broken -- no touch.  I suspect water damage.
  * studying (programming language)Julia.  Okay, just reading the docs.  A lot there.
  : L and D have gotten themselves separated, and D's phone appears to be dead.

  * up 6ish; W=184, S=5:45;
  & thanks to some malware (attempted malware) that I could only get rid of by restarting
    firefox without restoring tabs, I now have a nice almost-empty tab set.  I should do
    that every once in a while on my own -- there were at least 40.
  @ Woebot - Your charming robot friend who is ready to listen, 24/7 CBT chatbot
    I tried Woebot, a therapy chatbot and app for depression - Business Insider
    Woebot is a therapy chatbot and app for depression and anxiety - Business Insider
  : (Lenovo S-10 netbook)Blackbird seems to start quietly if properly shut down.  It seems
    to die if suspended; that may be the problem.
  @ Why You Hate Contemporary Architecture | Current Affairs (ysabetwordsmith)

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