foiled again

Apparently, I have recently been informed, a fair bit of mail that I’ve sent since last Friday as not been reaching its intended recipients. Not all of it, though! Baffling, and at first I thought I’d screwed up the mail system when I was resuscitating the machine on which it is hosted. Nobody else has seen this problem, though, and the logs pretty clearly indicate that my outbound mail wasn’t being seen by that mail server in the first place, so it didn’t really even have a chance to screw me up.

Turns out that I managed to mangle my Thunderbird, in the course of wild and reckless hacking on it for my own purposes, to set it into “offline-send” mode while retaining the ability to pull in new mail. So there were quite a few choice morsels of communication sitting in my Unsent Messages folder, wounding my very soul in their now-untimeliness.

(I say “were”, because that folder is now largely empty because of a follow-on screwup involving the order of the arguments to the “cp” command. At least I have the indecipherable summary database left to help me track it down!)

Some of them in there made it through, probably according to whatever hacking I was doing on my tbird build at the time, so I’ll be poring over log files to figure out which ones are missing later today. If you haven’t heard from me about something you were expecting to, well, you’re probably used to that now, but resending your request might not be a horrible plan.

(I know I’m way behind on the things I wanted to post about before, too. I don’t want to hear about it right now.)

me

So, yeah, 28 today. Perfect number!

Beltzner and Madhava have arranged for a location of celebration. (See extended entry.)

If you think you’d like to be there, you should feel welcome to show up. If you bring a gift, you risk having me berate you.

Want to celebrate my birthday in another way? Perhaps you have some sort of neurological damage which makes you want to give incredibly fortunate people like me gifts, just for playing the safe life expectancy odds?

Do something nice today for someone. Go a little out of your way. If it’s someone you don’t usually like that much, all the better. Or maybe a total stranger. Feel free to comment below with stories of such things, but also feel free to just quietly make the world a little nicer today.

If you feel utterly compelled to spend money, Covenant House would love to hear from you.

(more…)

a damn shame

Yeah, I’ve been slacking pretty hard on this web-log front. Lots of reasons, none of them very good. I’m hoping to get back on the horse a little bit now — I had, in fact, hoped to do so yesterday — so we’ll see if I have any readers left!

Some stuff I’d like to write about over the next week or so: * Lightning, a project I’m leading to stick Sunbird and Thunderbird in some sort of rigorously engineered software blender. * My work to make Mono talk to XPCOM, recently landed in the Mozilla tree in hopes of tricking roc into largely taking it over. * Some upcoming speaking engagements, confirmed and tentative, so that you can figure out where to catch a nap at various exciting conferences. * Some thoughts on software security, user protection, code auditing and “blame management” which will likely reveal how naive I continue to be about these things. * How you should properly observe my upcoming birthday, regardless of geography or relationship. * My most excellent Christmas vacation. * Why I’m going to the Game Developers Conference again this year, even though nobody has ever paid me a dime to work on a game, and won’t in the foreseeable future. (It’s probably not what you think.)

Or, you know, I could just disappear again, under the weight of my own mounting ambition and inability to manage my time. Were I you, I’d place bets very carefully, if at all.

dangerous minds

(Yes, I live.)

It’s not often that I support creationists over the ACLU, but here we are!

The stickers read: “This textbook contains material on evolution. Evolution is a theory, not a fact, regarding the origin of living things. This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully and critically considered.”

(Personally, I’d like to see that sort of sticker, especially the last sentence, plastered all over most textbooks.)

I don’t see how that sticker is offensive, or incorrect, or says anything that shouldn’t, in fact, be said in all respectable descriptions of evolution. (That it’s still news when new results to support the theory of macroevolution are found supports its status as theory, IMO. But then, I don’t think there’s anything foolish in making decisions on the basis of a “likely theory”, since I make very few decisions in my life on the basis of anything stronger.)

I don’t think that Creationism (or other alternative theories; I hear that Native Americans have some interesting ones) necessarily deserves “equal treatment”, but I would not object to some time spent discussing how other theories interpret the same evidence. If evolution is (as I certainly believe) the most likely of the theories to be correct, then such a presentation is to “evolution’s benefit”, no? There are certainly a lot of people in the scientific community making careers out of thinking critically about macroevolution, given the still-raging debate about how new structures and species can be “created” by evolutionary processes.

If the presenter has a bias against evolution, no curricular edict will prevent that scorn from colouring the students’ lessons. No point trying to solve that by outlawing stickers.

cautionary tale for sale, or some such late wisdom

Today some things happened involving a person I semi-routinely (but always quite politely, IMO) disagree with, and I said something kinda rude in what I believed to be a private discussion with some others, and, of course, out-of-context word got back, so I generally made a mess of things for a bunch of people, and it kinda sucked quite a bit. I apologized for the rudeness, but really, that sort of thing is hard to undo completely, especially when there are other such fires raging nearby.

And all that because I was compelled to be more “clever” than to just say “X likes Y quite a bit”.

Ladies and gentlemen, your star attraction!

In not-completely-unrelated news, my WebDAV work is coming along pretty well, and I’m pretty psyched to see Dan start to do CalDAV on top of it.

I think I saw him blink

I’m still alive, though a little sore after Zodiac. Been a little bit busy, though.

I think I’ll fold some shirts tonight.

overseasoned

Edd was right to call us, by which I mean me, on being a little too ranty during our talk on Tuesday. I got a little carried away, though I think it was important for us to dispel some of the halo surrounding the W3C as the only way to “morally” put forward new standards. The days of the divine rights of standards kings are behind us, for better or for worse, and Edd has already covered (quite well) some of the reasons why. I want “more tech and less rant” as well, and I hope to put some tech-money where our rant-mouth is in the very near future.

I’ll put our slides up somewhere later this week, though I don’t generally write slides to stand on their own, mainly because I can’t stand people reading exposition off of the screen, and don’t want to become the thing I hate.

eve of the handover

Best. Federal Election. Ever.

(I am eligible as a write-in candidate in your riding, remember.)

retroanimamechanization

Hoye got some good mileage the other day out ofthe relative inferiority of the vehicle-based Voltron series, and I was tempted to embellish upon his reflections with my own wandering thoughts — please find attached, elsewhere, sometime, perhaps, the virtues and pains of flatter organizational charts, and the productivity gains associated with allowing bright people to despecialize from time to time.

Instead, though, there is something more pressing. Somebody out there just might have M.A.S.K. episodes in some format that I could fetch with terrifying alacricity. These 30kbps RealVideo things are not exactly stuffing my MASK-hole, if you will. Little help? I am overwhelmed with nostalgia here.

deja vu

Hrm. I’m very tempted to go to Ottawa this weekend for Lisgar’s 160th. I wasn’t expecting this.

(I’m even tempted to contribute to the auditorium renovations, which also baffles me. I guess I did have some good times there.)

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