Ivor O’Connor

October 31, 2008


Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 11:39 pm

tech.blorge.com says gmail will be getting sms. I’m not one for sending text messages but there have been times I wanted to do this. Unfortunately as of almost midnight this feature on gmail still has not been made public.

VMware Server 2 and Ubuntu

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 11:14 pm

VMware Server 2 shows some improvement from http://www.linux.com has a good review. It has convinced me to upgrade to version 2 as soon as possible.

Final steps in dumping M$…

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 11:18 am

I am currently using two applications that require Microsoft.

The first application is quickbooks professional. I’ve tried alternatives like sqledger and such that run on Linux but I have too many troubles with them. I’m thinking I should try the online version of quickbooks. Maybe that will work for me?

The second application is really a driver. I have a multifunction printer hooked to the network that receives faxes and does my double sided printing, and most importantly allows me to scan documents. The scan feature I use extensively. It’s great to be able to scan multipage, sometimes double sided, documents at resolutions of 300 or 1200 dpi. But the scanning does not seem to be supported under Linux. (I hae a brother MFC-8660dn if anybody out there is an expert on this stuff.)

At this point I’m thinking of buying something new. Unfortunately the lists of supported hardware are at best starting points. Usually they are not really supported. And finding support at the vendors site is less than perfect. I guess I’ll start keeping my eyes open for possibilities. If anybody has first hand knowledge of a good inexpensive scanner please reply here. (Or a good multi-function printer with network scanning and such that would do too.)

I certainly do want to be rid of Microsoft. And there must be others who are using Ubuntu and have had the same issues I’m having.

October 29, 2008

Personal Genome Project

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 11:46 pm

I think I want to spend time, donate my time perhaps, to help this project.

Project Overview
In an unprecedented achievement, the Human Genome Project provided the first drafts of nearly complete human genome sequences in 2001 after more than a decade of effort by scientists worldwide. This information is now being used to advance medicine, human biology, and knowledge of human origins.
We foresee a day when many individuals will want to get their own genome sequenced so that they may use this information to understand such things as their individual risk profiles for disease, their physical and biological characteristics, and their personal ancestries. To get to this point will require a critical mass of interested users, tools for obtaining and interpreting genome information, and supportive policy, research, and service communities. To catalyze these developments, we launched the Personal Genome Project (PGP).

To do this there are a number of companies including Complete Genomics, Applied Biosystems, and Helicos

Pandora Radio!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 10:27 pm

Pandora Radio is fantastic. I don’t know why it is not used by everybody!

Regression testing web apps

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 3:03 pm

I came across this today at http://selenium-core.openqa.org/

Selenium Core is a test tool for web applications. Selenium Core tests run directly in a browser, just as real users do. And they run in Internet Explorer, Mozilla and Firefox on Windows, Linux, and Macintosh. No other test tool covers such a wide array of platforms.

  • Browser compatibility testing. Test your application to see if it works correctly on different browsers and operating systems. The same script can run on any Selenium platform.
  • System functional testing. Create regression tests to verify application functionality and user acceptance.

Selenium Core uses a unique mechanism which allows it to run on so many platforms. Written in pure JavaScript/DHTML, you copy Selenium Core tests directly into your your application webserver, allowing the tests to run in any supported browser on the client-side. Thus, you must have write access to the machine your web application server is running on to install Selenium Core.

Selenium Core was developed by team of programmers and testers at ThoughtWorks (see below). It is open-source software and can be downloaded and used without charge. It is currently under active development by our team. Stay tuned for updates and further announcements.

ThoughtWorks is a leader in Agile development methods for enterprise software development. Selenium is designed specifically for the acceptance testing requirements of Agile teams. However, teams using more traditional development will also find it useful.

Obama leads McCain 52-36 in Pew poll

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — ioconnor @ 9:42 am

Obama leads McCain 52-36 in Pew poll

The article goes on to say

The Pew poll found McCain’s support has dropped in all demographic categories except for self-described evangelical Christians, where the Republican held his only advantage.

Hmmm. They left out a key word. It should have read “self-described WHITE evangelical Christians”.

Anyway, both Obama and McCain are controlled by their Wall Street paymasters. They’ll both continue to bring the country down by giving the lobbyists what they want instead of doing what the country needs. What we really need is a Cynthia McKinney or Ralph Nader in office. People who have been unfairly burned or have had a life long record of doing what is right yet still continue to try.

The problem is people like to only vote for “viable” candidates. That excludes 3rd party. People want to vote for a winner…

I say vote the right way. Don’t be discouraged that a republican or democrat will win the presidency. Instead focus on local issues where your vote has a much better chance of making a difference. If enough people do this then future elections will offer the lemming voters good “viable” choices. The key is to have enough viable choices lobbyists can not afford to bribe them all. When this happens, as it has happened in most of the rest of the World, our country will finally have a chance to be governed by politicians that may have our interests in mind.

How about wind power

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 5:32 am

I like the idea of wind power.

Here is a link to the quietest residential wind turbine made. It has a 7′ diameter, emits 35db max, and should be mounted a couple feet above the roof to produce 1.5KW of power. They have a google maps overlay to give you an idea of the wind quality. Most areas are only poor, level 1, so wind does not seem cost beneficial here…

frequently asked questions

How does a wind turbine work?
The wind turbine works the opposite of a fan. Instead of using electricity to make wind, like a fan, wind turbines use wind to make electricity. The wind turns the blades, which spin a shaft, which connects to a generator and makes electricity.

Does it cause harm to birds or bats?
While no such studies have been performed specifically for small wind turbines, anecdotal evidence indicates that birds occasionally collide with small wind turbines as they do with any other type of structure. However, such events are rare and very unlikely to have any impact on bird populations. Large, utility-scale wind turbines account for less than 0.003% of all human-caused bird deaths, and small wind turbines have even less of an impact. House cats in the U.S., by contrast, are estimated to kill roughly one billion birds each year. Statistically, a single house cat, a window pane, or an automobile is a much greater threat to birds than a wind turbine of any size.

How is Swift different from other turbines?
Swift is a rooftop mount wind turbine that is quiet. Traditional wind turbines generate some noise as the wind travels the length of the blade. The outer ring on Swift acts as a diffuser as the wind travels down the blades and is dispersed along the outer ring, therefore eliminating the noise and keeping the turbine quiet. Cascade Engineering will be manufacturing all blades worldwide and will do assembly for all turbines sold in the United States.

What is the average cost to install a Swift Wind Turbine?
Swift has an estimated installed cost of about $10,000 – $12,000. Depending on the installed price, cost of electricity, average wind speed, and rebates available the Swift Wind Turbine can pay for itself in as little as 3 years.

How much electricity can I expect from my Swift Wind Turbine?
Swift will generate about 2000 kWh in a good wind location. This is about 20% of an average homes use. Multiple units can be used at one location to supplement commercial and industrial use.
What is the warranty?
Swift has a 5 year manufacturers warranty and is designed for a 20 year life.

October 28, 2008

How to copy a filesystem

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 4:51 pm

I need to remember this Linux Journal howto. I wonder how I could prove to myself it is better than rsync. (I should mark a file’s extended attribute as “system” and see if rsync does indeed fail to copy it and that this method below does.)

1) Boot both PCs with any Linux live CD (for example, Knoppix), and make sure they can access each other via the network.

2) On the source machine, mount the partition containing the filesystem to be copied, and start the transfer using netcat and tar:

cd /mnt/sda1
tar -czpsf - . | pv -b | nc -l 3333

3) On the destination machine, mount the partition to receive the filesystem, and start the process:

cd /mnt/sda1
nc 3333 | pv -b | tar -xzpsf -

October 25, 2008

Kristin Scott Thomas

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 1:18 pm


NPR’s latest movie review is about a movie she’s in, http://www.npr.org/search.php?text=kristin+scott+thomas. I think I’d like to watch more of her movies.

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