Dear Santa, thank you for the dolls and pencils and the fish. It's Easter now, so I hope I didn't wake you but... honest, it is an emergency. There's a crack in my wall. Aunt Sharon says it's just an ordinary crack, but I know its not cause at night there's voices so... please please can you send someone to fix it? Or a policeman, or...
Back in a moment.
Thank you Santa.

Tuesday, January 16

World

Be Careful What You Wish For

John Derbyshire:
Now, weave in our recent thread about consumer eugenics and designer babies. If consumer eugenics becomes cheap and ubiquitous, as I suspect it will, won't religious people want their offsprings' genes tweaked to make them religious, too? With the result, if those differential birthrates hold up, that the world will become more religious generation by generation?
I can think of few more things more damaging to religion that the discovery that it is even partly genetic in origin and readily manipulable. If your belief system can be set by simple genetic tweaking, as Derbyshire would have it, then it seems to be of no more significance than blue eyes or brown.

I'm not greatly concerned by this, but I think that those in favour of religion should be.

(via Insty)

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 01:08 PM | No Comments | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Sunday, January 14

Geek

Jessica Alba Ate My Server

I have 120 Apache threads running non-stop and bandwidth up 100% over normal, and who do I have to thank for it?

Idiots searching for pictures of Jessica Alba and Elisha Cuthbert and ending up at the Jawas.

more...

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 05:26 PM | Comments (8) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Saturday, January 13

Geek

Ha Ha!

It's just a phone.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:32 AM | No Comments | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Life

Bleh

I've been down with a cold all week, which is why I've been less active than normal. I'm trying to finish translating Minx from the proof-of-concept model to the production design, but that's hard to do when your head is all squishy.

Worse, I think the cough that took me out for three weeks last October is coming back. Well, it's nothing like as bad yet, but it feels similar. Or maybe it's just a cough; I don't know.

I'd go back to bed except that it's nearly 30 degrees here at Pixy Central even with the air conditioner running non-stop.

I'd eat some ice cream except that seems to aggravate the cough.

I'd drink some of my nice iced tea except I already drank it all.

I'd go to the shop and buy some more except that it's even hotter outside, and as I said, my head is all squishy.

Meanwhile, I was doing some testing, converting all the munu blogs to Minx using my automagical converter program. Two problems cropped up:

First, it took 50 minutes to convert everything, which seemed a bit slow. It's less than 15 seconds per blog, and that involves pulling the data out of the old database as well as putting it into the new one (this is a direct db-to-db transfer rather than an export/import function) - but that's still slower than I'd hoped.

Second, the resulting database was nearly twice the size of the original Movable Type one. I know I have a lot of new fields to account for the extra functionality, but I was very careful about how and when and where they were added, so I was extremely disappointed to see that they caused that much bloat. Essentially, that would mean I'd need twice the memory on the database servers to handle the same number of users, which makes for a lot more expense.

And then I discovered a leetle bug in the conversion program. That caused it to copy each blog twice. Which would account for 50% of the slow and 100% of the bloat.

My head feels a bit better now.

Update: Well, it fixed the size problem. The speed problem, not so much. The code isn't the issue; 45 minute run time vs. 4 minutes CPU. I'll move on to the import routine and see if it's the pull/push nature that's slowing it down.

Update: The dread cough of doom seems to be in hiding. Let's hope it stays that way. It's also set to be a lot cooler the next few days, with predicted maximums of 23 to 23 degrees, where today it was as I said 30 degrees indoors with the air conditioner running...

Now if I could just lose the headache, I'd be almost happy.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 12:19 AM | Comments (4) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Friday, January 12

Anime

Shakugan No Spoiler!

Steven: Some of the issues you raise are major plot points. Some of them aren't, but are nonetheless resolved satisfactorily by the end of the series. Some of them are ignored as the action heats up, but some of them come to the fore just as the action heats up.

And some are never really answered.

Just so you know. smile

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 01:55 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Thursday, January 11

Geek

On BitTorrent

Just to comment on what Steven has written about P2P:

First, I'll be getting my anime OP/ED site back up shortly, but initially it will be direct download. I have the bandwidth to spare, and I can manage the interface nicely with the current version of Minx, but I don't have BT support working yet.

Second, on BitTorrent itself. BT is different from most P2P applications (or at least the older ones) in that it's a file-swarming protocol rather than a file-sharing system. If you look at the standard BT client (which is open-source, and written in Python), it downloads one file at a time, and shares only that file with others, and only while you leave the program running. You can certainly end up uploading more than you download, particularly with the way I had the site set up before. With 50 or so torrents active, I could only allocate a limited amount of bandwidth to each, so downloaders would preferentially get data from other users (if there were any).

If you use a program like Azureus or μTorrent, it looks more like a traditional P2P app, but still has a difference: Only the torrents you specifically have active are shared. You can't share your whole anime directory; the programs just don't support doing that.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 01:39 AM | No Comments | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Wednesday, January 10

Geek

Meh

A phone. And a set-top box.

That's it?

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 03:19 PM | Comments (14) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Sunday, January 07

Anime

More Ikki Than Ever

Ikki Tousen Dragon Destiny

I should have guessed: There must be four dragons. The third dragon is only revealed in volume 10 of the manga (just released this month), so this trailer contains spoilers even if you're up to date with the manga.

Also contains tipples. So NSFW, if your work frowns on that. (Actually, it's a pretty crummy trailer. There may be a better one available; I'm downloading it now.)

It looks like it continues on from the first series, which is problematic because they kind of mangled the plot in the first series so that they could have an "ending". I don't remember if the dragons showed up in the anime at all.

Okay, the trailer I downloaded is just a higher-quality version of the one at YouTube. I'll upload it later.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 04:50 AM | Comments (7) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Saturday, January 06

Geek

Ping!

Hitachi announces 1TB drives.

Suggested retail price of $399; the Seagate 750GB drive sells for around $340, so that's a pretty good deal. Seagate launched the 750GB back in April at a price of $559.

This is good news, because I need a bunch of these. And SoftLayer do use Hitachi drives. (I just checked: Akane has Hitachi drives; Nabiki has Western Digital. Ranma, which is hosted at LayeredTech, also has Western Digital.)

The new drives are 5-platter models, so they don't actually represent an advance in areal density, but they do represent an advance in the amount of storage you can jam into a 1U server.

(Via The Inquirer)

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 07:04 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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Friday, January 05

Anime

Full Moon

Just finished watching Full Moon wo Sagashite. Recommended, even if it made my head hurt. (That might be more due to the fact that I need new glasses than anything unique to this show, anyway.)

For those of you who have already seen it, Will at Criminally Weird has some thoughts. (If you haven't seen it, he still has some thoughts, but big spoiler warning.)

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:08 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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