January 20

30 Ways to handle stress…

  1. Jam 39 tiny marshmallows up your nose and try to sneeze them out.

  2. Use your mastercard to pay your visa.

  3. Pop some popcorn without putting the lid on.

  4. When someone says “Have a nice day” tell them you have other plans.

  5. Find out what a frog in a blender really looks like.

  6. Forget the diet and send yourself a candygram.

  7. Make a list of things that you’ve already done.

  8. Dance naked in front of your pets.

  9. Put your toddlers clothes on backwards and send them off to preschool as if nothing was wrong.

  10. Retaliate for tax woes by filling out your tax return with roman numerals.

  11. Tattoo “out to lunch” on your forehead.

  12. Tape pictures fo your boss on watermelons and lobb them from high places.

  13. Leaf through National Geographic and draw underwear on the natives.

  14. Go shopping, buy everything, sweat in it, return it the next day.

  15. Buy a subscription to sleezoid weekly and set it to your bosses wife/hubby.

  16. Pay your electricity bill in pennies.

  17. Drive to work in reverse.

  18. Relay by mentally reflecting on your favourite episode of The Flintstones during that important finance meeting.

  19. Sit naked on a shelled hard-boiled egg.

  20. Refresh yourself. Put your tongue on a cold steel guardrail.

  21. Tell you boss to blow it out of his mule and let him figure it out.

  22. Polish your car with earwax.

  23. Read the dictionary upside down and look for secret messages.

  24. Start a nasty rumour and see if you recognise it when it comes back to you.

  25. Bill your doctor/dentist/whoever for time spent in his waiting room.

  26. Braid the hairs in each nostril.

  27. Write a short story; using alphabet soup.

  28. Lie on your back eating celery…. using your naval as a salt dipper.

  29. Stare at people through the lines of a fork and pretend they’re in jail.

  30. Make up a language and ask people for directions.

January 17

Setting up your own mailserver in Debian.

DebianSo, you have your own machine and a fixed IP address and want to set up your own mail server. Sometimes this can seem quite difficult but the reality is that you can be up and running with a fast, secure mail environment within about 30 minutes – Possibly quicker depending on your typing speed!

Like most of my guides, I will be demonstrating what to do to get things up and running first using cook-book type instructions and then as we go along I’ll be explaining about the build and what things control what options. Either way, by following this guide you will have a basic, working and secure mail server for your domain.
Continue reading

January 13

Micros Story…

TransputerMicro was a real-time operator and dedicated multi-user. His broad-band protocol made it easy for him to interface with numerous input/output devices, even if it meant time-sharing.

One evening he arrived home just as the Sun was crashing, and had parked his Motorola 68040 in the main drive (he had missed the 5100 bus that morning), when he noticed an elegant piece of liveware admiring the daisy wheels in his garden. He thought to himself, “She looks user-friendly. I’ll see if she’d like an update tonight.”

Mini was her name, and she was delightfully engineered with eyes like COBOL and a PRIME mainframe architecture that set Micro’s peripherals networking all over the place. He browsed over to her casually, admiring the power of her twin, 32-bit floating point processors and enquired “How are you, Honeywell?”.

“Yes, I am well”, she responded, batting her optical fibres engagingly and smoothing her console over her curvilinear functions.

Micro settled for a straight line approximation. “I’m stand-alone tonight”, he said, “How about computing a vector to my base address? I’ll output a byte to eat, and maybe we could get offset later on.”

Mini ran a priority process for 2.6 milliseconds, then transmitted 8K. “I’ve been dumped myself recently, and a new page is just what I need to refresh my disks. I’ll park my machine cycle in your background and meet you inside.”

She walked off, leaving Micro admiring her solenoids and thinking, “Wow, what a global variable, I wonder if she’d like my firmware?”

They sat down at the process table to top of form feed of fiche and chips and a bucket of baudot.

Mini was in conversation mode and expanded on ambiguous arguments while Micro gave the occasional acknowledgements, although, in reality, he was analyzing the shortest and least critical path to her entry point.

He finally settled on the old ‘Would you like to see my benchmark routine’, but Mini was again one step ahead.

Suddenly she was up and stripp full functionality of her operating system software. “Let’s get BASIC, you RAM”, she said.

Micro was loaded by this; his hardware was in danger of overflowing its output buffer, a hang-up that Micro had consulted his analyst about.

“Core”, was all he could say, as she prepared to log him off.

Micro soon recovered, however, when Mini went down on the DEC and opened her divide files to reveal her data set ready. He accessed his fully packed root device and was just about to start pushing into her CPU stack, when she attempted an escape sequence.

“No, no!”, she cried, “You’re not shielded!”

“Reset, Baby”, he replied,

“I’ve been debugged.”

But I haven’t got my current loop enabled, and I can’t support child processes”, she protested.

“Don’t run away”, he said, “I’ll generate an interrupt.”

No, that’s too error prone, and I can’t abort because of my design philosophy.”

Micro was locked in by this stage, though, and could not be turned off. But Mini soon stopped his thrashing by introducing a voltage spike into his main supply, whereupon he fell over with a head crash and went to sleep.

“Computers!”, she thought, as she recompiled herself.
“All they ever think of is hex!”

January 3

Introducing Tux Tuesdays…

DebianNo… this hasn’t got anything to do with formal dining but everything to do with Linux.

Naturally, being a geek, I have quite a few techie friends – and many of them are Wingeeks with in interest in running linux but a fear of the command line.

So every Tuesday, from the 4th January, I will be posting a new article introducing Debian and building up a fully functioning web and mail server in a “build it yourself” way. I’m not going to be going heavily into theory but take a more practical approach and by following along you’ll be able to learn by experience rather than boring old theory. As such, don’t expect everything to be best practice, but it will teach the concepts involved.

If you want to join in, you’ll need an old PC or a Digital Ocean¬†droplet (and clicking that link will explain a bit more about DigitalOcean and give you $10 worth of free server time if you want to build this in the cloud.)

December 12

Seasons Greetings!


Christmas tree

It’s been a bit quiet this year on the blog, that’s mainly because I have had a very turbulent year, but with the help if friends and family – and also some fantastic help from my Psychologist – I’m looking forward to 2017!

I’m spending Christmas down in London this year, and so this will be the last post of 2016 from me – but there will be loads of new stuff in 2017 here.

In the meantime, I wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy new year!