The Caffeinated Penguin

musings of a crackpot hacker


| May 30, 2008

So, apparently a gaggle of foster kittens is a momcat, 2 of her babies, and 2 orphans who are still nursing, all about a month old. One of the littler ones (her babies, likely the runt) gave us a scare, but she was just sleeping. 🙂 The orphans are persistent and have been hogging all the food, so we make sure to pull them out of the room into the main house and let them run around for a bit, to give the others a chance to eat. They are exploring my office as I write this.

I will post pictures of the kyoot as soon as I have a chance.

Edit: And we just agreed to take 2 more from a nurse who found some abandoned kittens. She will be dropping by later today.


| May 29, 2008


I don't know if this is a java6 thing or an openJDK thing, but finally you can chmod u+x a .jar file and run it and the OS figures out what it needs to do. Mono is newer and this has worked on its exe's for years.

Also, the default widget set is a little prettier. The Eclipse SWT is still nicer, but it's a start. Hell, if Sun really wanted to make it easy, they'd embed the SWT in the build.. While it looks like there is a libswt-3.2-gtk-java package (as well as ones for GCJ and jni), that doesn't help if you're sending the executable to people who have the bare interpreter… unless it statically links it in to the .jar, which I'm not sure if it does.. I'll have to look in to that..

More catchup

| May 28, 2008

  • I installed the Panzer Plate. Very clever design, went on easily in about three hours of actual work. I used anti-seize lubricant instead of plain old grease, which I figure would work better, and it worked just fine. I also had to borrow a 12″ socket extension from my father in law, because you need it for the bolts which mount the two standoffs. The bottom scrapes more often than it used to, but everything is protected now. It also stiffens up the front end considerably. I figured it was bunk, but it’s not. Now all I need is a suspension kit, upgraded firmware, and some new tires (performance tires on 19″ rims) and I’ll be ready to tear it up. A little bit at a time, though..
  • I used one of those Pela Oil extractors to change the oil. It works, and it does get all of it, but it takes some time. Pump it up 20 times, wait half an hour, pump it up again, etc. It took about 2 hours to suck out the 4.5 quarts of oil in the car. But, it’s easier than crawling around, just make sure you aren’t in a rush.
  • I replaced the carburetor and tines on the tiller. It works much better now
  • The peas and corn are in, and I broke a fourth field for other stuff
  • I will be designating a perennial section for horseradish and garlic
  • The peas have sprouted and the pea fence is up
  • I need to put up the electric fencing
  • We’re working on landscaping the house, so we’ve been digging sod and digging out rocks in order to bring the tiller, which will take many passes in order to get this as deep as we want it (which is as deep as it will go), as the tiller is only 6HP and if you try to till the whole 10″ or however deep it can go all in one shot, it bogs down and stalls. Once that is done, we have some peat to till in, and then Liz will go nuts planting all the plans she has gotten for it
  • Once this section of landscaping is all done, we might start clearing out various overgrowth down by the stream. We can even do this when it is hot, because we’re right by the stream and can jump in and cool off, and keep a mesh bag full of drinks there, which would keep them nice and cold
  • The animal rescue people called and will be stopping by tomorrow with a gaggle of kittens for us to foster. They hinted that these were still with momma and might be here for some time. I am comfortable with that. I will post pictures
  • Firefighter class is over in just over a week. June 7 is our last class
  • I ordered a set of these for mowing the lawn. I’ll let folks know how they work. Essentially, they’re hearing protection that you can jack your iPod into. I got the “behind the head” model, so I can still wear a hat while mowing. For the curious, the blower for the bagger is something like 90db at the distance where I sit. Over 4 hours, that is really too loud to be right next to. Plus, I can listen to Audio Drama and Audio Books (oh, all free, by the way), which makes it much more interesting.

Okay, I guess that is it for tonight.


| May 26, 2008

If I had known that it was a Godzilla movie in the style of Blair Witch, I wouldn't have bothered – I got it more because I wanted to know what folks were talking about. Now see, I like bad movies – Evil Dead, hell, even Jesus Christ: Vampire Hunter was at least funny. This just plain sucked, and on top of that was difficult to watch because of the stupid handheld style.

It did have one good point to it – it was only an hour and fifteen minutes long.


| May 23, 2008

Saw the Indiana Jones movie tonight. I will reserve commentary to save spoilers, but I did see an AK-74 muzzle brake on an AK-47. Now, this is not unusual per se… except it's 1957, which means that the '74 hasn't been invented yet.

Also, ordered me a set of these. I can wear a hat, listen to my iPod, and mow the lawn, all at once. In theory, they should make good shooting muffs too. I have some electronic ones with the microphone which cuts out when it gets loud, so I'll have to compare and contrast.. I'd expect the ones set up so you can hear instructions are better for matches, but when I'm by myself at the range, I can shoot to music… 😉


| May 21, 2008

Retired cop shoots and kills firefighter because the FF was having a birthday party and the kids ball went into the cop's yard. The FF goes over to get the ball, an argument ensues, it gets physical and the cop shoots him. Now, we don't know what transpired here, and it could be that the firefighter was beating the snot out of the cop and he was in fear for his life, and thus it was a “good shoot”*. However, these facts are clear – a cop shot and killed a man with his wife, two kids, and a bunch of other partygoers only next door. I would speculate that many of said partygoers likely had full view of the incident.

  • = He is being charged with murder, so I doubt that the prosecution thinks it was justified.

The golden rule does not apply to me….

| May 16, 2008

The Ethic of Reciprocity, more commonly known as The Golden Rule, states: “treat others as you would like to be treated.”.

I was talking with Liz recently, and she had some great insight.

It does not apply to me.

The reason it does not apply to me is that other people don't want to be treated the way I want to be treated.

I want people to be honest with me, I have little regard for platitudes, being right is more important than your feelings, and being wrong is not as bad as you think.

Apparently, this is not how other people want to be treated.

Movies and Fire Stuff

| May 10, 2008

Liz and I watched Juno – very good movie, I highly recommend it.

I did my firefighter survival course today. Not good. The last thing I, as someone afraid of heights, needs is to toss myself out of a second story window and dangle my ass out by a survival rope. I panicked on my first try, and basically freaked out and had to get out of the window. The instructors worked with me a bit though, and managed to get me through it.

Going headfirst down the ladder is easier – go out, hand over hand, spin around, go down normally. That is actually easier, despite it being the same height, because you can't really fall when you're laying on the ladder.

One thing this class does though is make you question if you can really do this stuff. They really could do it a lot better.. take it more slowly, maybe break it up into a few classes, give more time for it to sink in. Maybe then they wouldn't have a 40% failure rate. (We're down 25% already, and we're only a week past mid term).

Geek/Nerd/Dork personality test

| May 8, 2008


Your Score: Outcast Genius

56 % Nerd, 65% Geek, 60% Dork

For The Record:

A Nerd is someone who is passionate about learning/being smart/academia.
A Geek is someone who is passionate about some particular area or subject, often an obscure or difficult one.
A Dork is someone who has difficulty with common social expectations/interactions.
You scored better than half in all three, earning you the title of: Outcast Genius.

Outcast geniuses usually are bright enough to understand what society wants of them, and they just don’t care! They are highly intelligent and passionate about the things they know are *truly* important in the world. Typically, this does not include sports, cars or make-up, but it can on occassion (and if it does then they know more than all of their friends combined in that subject).

Outcast geniuses can be very lonely, due to their being outcast from most normal groups and too smart for the room among many other types of dorks and geeks, but they can also be the types to eventually rule the world, ala Bill Gates, the prototypical Outcast Genius. THE NERD? GEEK? OR DORK? TEST

Okay, maybe, but Bill Gates? I mean, really. Talk about kicking someone in the nuts.

Vewwy intewwesting

| May 3, 2008

I was issued a new Discover card. I call in to activate the new card and actually have to talk to a rep instead of using the automatic menu system.

This is annoying, and I mention it.

I was told that the reason I had to talk with a rep was because of the security issue.

What security issue?

Well, apparently, someone with whom I did business got hacked and my information may or may not have been leaked.

Hmmm.. Will they tell me who it is?


That should be illegal. They should be required by law to disclose potential security breaches of which they have been advised related to my account.

But, of course they don't want to. One, it would scare folks into not using their Credit Cards. Two, it would negatively affect the company which had the breach, and they don't want to be responsible for that.