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Diary
By ad hoc (Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 09:05:22 AM EST) work, cycling, bikes, movies, coding trouble, Olympics, warm, cold (all tags)
I've been busy, busy, busy trying to make a deadline. And what happens?


The turnover meeting for the stuff I'm writing was supposed to be last Wednesday. Client postponed it until Friday and then until tomorrow. So it's still tomorrow, so far. Then, an hour after the original Wednesday meeting was to take place, I get a slew of change requests that have to be done before this can be released. Hmpf. This was supposed to be live on Feb 1. I've made every date, but they don't seem to be able to get their act together. The trouble is that this one is particularly visible and has a real, hard drop-dead date. It's an application to facilitate $task. The input for $task can come from the membership or the general public between January 1 and April 30. On May 1, no more input. Period. So every day of delay is one less day people can perform $task. I just need to make the executive director aware that it's his staff that's delaying things, not me.

The machine at the hosting service where four of my websites are ran out of disk space some time Saturday night. I've been unable to upload anything since then. Damn inconvenient. At least it doesn't seem to affect the databases, so things are still running.


Can you imagine?

Colored bubbles!

Cool film


Woot!
Package Progress:

Location                Date            Local Time      Activity
HARRISBURG,  PA,  US    02/20/2006      3:42 A.M.       DEPARTURE SCAN
HARRISBURG,  PA,  US    02/17/2006      9:04 P.M.       ARRIVAL SCAN
NORTHUMBERLAND,  PA, US 02/17/2006      7:33 P.M.       DEPARTURE SCAN
.                       02/17/2006      6:54 P.M.       ORIGIN SCAN
US                      02/17/2006      4:13 P.M.       BILLING INFORMATION RECEIVED

My new bike should be here Tuesday. Er, Wednesday. Guess who has a client meeting on Tuesday? :< But! I'll have it in time for Schlitz and Giggles!


Took a ride last Thursday (23 mi), but couldn't get out of the house until almost 2:30, so had to cut it way short and only got to West Newton. Spectacular day, almost 60. Roads are kind of a mess with all the melting snow but… 60 degrees!!! In February!!! Stopped at Harris Cyclery while there and oogled at the inventory. They had a nice Pake (in my size!), a Redline 9-2-5 that was kitted out really nicely with mustache handlebars. The Redline s a compact frame, though, and I’m really after a classic. They also had Surley Steamroller and Karate Money frames, and well as a couple Bianchi Pistas.


Saturday (50 mi), I took the train to Southborough for a meeting with the NEC folks in Marlborough. (10 miles from the station). Got there a few minutes late, but earlier than some others. Meeting lasted about 90 minutes, then rode home.

It was very cold and very windy, but at least most of the wind was at my back. Some of the side gusts made the bike a little squirrelly, though and that was a bit unnerving. There’s really no good route back from Marlborough. I started back on US 20 but that sucked with a capital K. So I turned off at Wayside Inn Road and followed some other streets back. It’s very weird but there are no east-west roads out there except for US 20. There NE-SW, SE-NW and N-S but no E-W. I eventually got to Wellesley and took Beacon Street back in.

To look at me, you wouldn’t know it, but sometimes I forget to eat. I looked down at my clock and it was 2:00 and I hadn’t eaten anything since breakfast at 7:00. I was out. of. gas. And the part of Wellesley or Natick or wherever I was didn’t have anything to eat, or at least nowhere I could get something eat without leaving my bike. I eventually got to Waban and went into a deli, but everything in there was huge. No way I could eat a twenty pound pastrami sandwich. A little further along I found a bakery and got something to eat there. All I really wanted was some Chex Mix, but I decided to show some solidarity with our friends from Denmark so I bought a cheese Danish. Fifteen minutes later, I had lots of gas energy.

So much so that I could have ridden much further, but my feet were frozen, along with my water bottles (again!), and it turns out my gloves don’t ventilate very well, so my hands were soaked and starting to prune. Though I don’t pay much attention to speed at this time of the year, my time of 13.75 mph was disappointing. Maybe it was the cold, maybe the added winter tonnage, maybe it was stopping to check the map every friggin 10 feet. Don’t know. But that pretty much makes up my mind not to sign up for B2B. I don’t think I can get to 16 mph through that kind of terrain by June at this rate.


Coding trouble.
I have a problem, I think, although I can't be sure. But since it manifests itself in my code, it appears to be my problem and I don't know what to do about it.

The situation: Client has a whole set of subdirectories for CAI (Computer aided instruction). All of these subdirectories are httpd password protected. The parent of these is not password protected and contains a page for checking userid's and passwords. They don't want people to know of these subdirectories (For some reason) and don't want to create new userid's and passwords for these subdirectories for every class that comes through (besides, it's not really a "class", anyone can start any topic at any time provided they meet certain membership criteria, it's not a start-and-end-date class).

So what I did was to create a kludge using 404 pages. Once they successfully log in, I record which class they're taking (one class per login, one class per subdirectory), and all URLs from then on are handled through a coded 404 page. That is, they click on, say "lesson1.html", that page does not exist in parentdir, so it gets sent to my 404.cfm where I find the right file on the disk (which would be, like "parentdir/onlineclass25/lesson1.html" and output the contents of that file to the browser directly. If they're not logged in (or if the file really isn't found), it outputs a fake IIS 404.

This worked just fine for six or eight months. What's happening now, and with increasing regularity, is people are getting server timeouts and images on the page are showing the $browser broken image icon. It doesn't seem to vary by browser (the fact that most people report it against IE is just because most of this crew uses IE, but it does happen in FF and Safari as well). The server logs don't report anything. I'm at a loss.

Anyone have any ideas?


Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle
[Netflix] [IMDb]

The title says it all. Two stoners get hungry, must have sliders from White Castle, so they hit the road. Hilarity ensues. Or not. A stinker. I suppose one or two fo the jokes were funny, but this was so formulaic that you could just pick scenes and tell what the original movie was. Ferris Bueller? Check. Porky's? Check. American Pie? Check. American Graffiti? Check. I mean, it's not so bad that I had to fast forward through it (although I was tempted at points) but it wasn't a pleasant experience. That said, if you liked Napoleon Dynamite, you'd probably like this.

Would not watch again.

Cats & Dogs
[Netflix] [IMDb]

There's been a secret war between cats and dogs waging for centuries. The latest battle in the war involves a scientist (Jeff Goldblum) who is working on a vaccine to prevent dog allergies. The cats must stop this at all costs because it would give the edge in the war to the dogs. Hilarity ensues. And it does. The voices are perfect, the stunts are perfect, the jokes are perfect. The only little niggle I have about the whole thing is they didn't really explain enough of what the femme fatale (Susan Sarandon) was all about. But that's a really tiny thing. The high tech gizmos of the dog's intelligence network, and just the fact that the evil overlord of the cat world is named "Mr. Tinkles" just cracked me up.

Would own.

Oceans Eleven (2001)
[Netflix] [IMDb]

Danny Ocean (George Clooney) is released from jail and plans his next caper: rob a vault holding the deposits of three Las Vegas casinos. Enter the ten other co-culprits. An excellent caper movie. Not quite on par with, say, Rififi, it was top quality. Just enough goes wrong to keep you interested if not quite on the edge of your seat. The romance between Ocean and Tess (Julia Roberts) wasn't overplayed, and the cast worked well together. A few of the performances bordered on the thespian, notably Andy Garcia who was a little too much Godfather-like, and Pitt who was a little too much Fight Club-like, but on the whole a great show.

Would watch again.


Twice this weekend I heard the words "my internal monologue". I like that. I always wondered what that was called.


So. the Olympics®. I actually watched a bit. I think it's the first time I've watched any in years. And while I can't bear to watch the games non-stop commercials on NBC, the CNBC broadcasts haven't been bad at all.  Mostly, I"ve been watching the curling, and it's an interesting game, not least because of the cool hats. I don't understand the scoring, but I do understand how the rocks are played. Very cool. Sort of a cross between pool and bocce. On ice. It also seems fairly EPO and steroid free. The Canadian commentators are pretty funny, too. "Oooh, that was an embarrassing shot, eh?"

The rest of it has been pretty dull or so commerical filled as to be unwatchable. The snowboard cross is kind of interesting for a short time, but the course is too short or something and after a while, it all looks the same. But I suppose it depends on what sports you like. I could watch bike racing forever, even it it's just a hundred people riding in a big bunch for 120 miles. Speaking of which, why isn't there any ice bike racing like Sustina in the winter Olympics®?

< Excuse me, I asked for my alternative music without the emo | BBC White season: 'Rivers of Blood' >
Lots o' stuff | 15 comments (15 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Re: Colored Bubbles. by toxicfur (4.00 / 2) #1 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 09:53:22 AM EST
I MUST HAVE THEM! It doesn't seem like they're available for purchase yet, though. I just want to pop them on my cats and make them temporarily multi-colored.
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damn it, lif eis actually really *far4 too good at tghe momnent, shboyukbnt;t whilen. --Dr Thrustgood
Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #2 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 10:55:29 AM EST
The Neil Patrick Harris (Doogie Howser) scenes are fantastic in that movie.  I agree the movie as a whole was pretty bad, but NPH made up for it in the scenes he was in.




---------------
Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
Those were okay. by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #3 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:07:58 AM EST
I also kind of liked the Asian club meeting.
--
Would you rather battle Klingons or trolls?
[ Parent ]
It was highly recommended to me by georgeha (4.00 / 1) #7 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:22:34 AM EST
by a traveling partner, but then such partner looks like his name might be Kumar.


[ Parent ]
I don't usually like humor by yankeehack (4.00 / 1) #13 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 05:23:17 PM EST
like that, but I enjoyed Harold and Kumar. 

Note: The "uncut" version has two additional sets of boobies. That's the difference.
"...she dares to indulge in the secret sport. You can't be a MILF with the F, at least in part because the M is predicated upon it."-CBB

[ Parent ]
There were boobies aplenty by ad hoc (2.00 / 0) #14 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 05:39:27 PM EST
+1 for rating system graphics by cam (4.00 / 1) #4 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:13:40 AM EST
even garlic can't argue with those.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

Oh, I bet he could. by ad hoc (4.00 / 1) #9 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:34:36 AM EST
For the love of Gord by Man (4.00 / 3) #5 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:19:03 AM EST
Don't see Ocean's Twelve.

It's not on my list. by ad hoc (2.00 / 0) #8 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:32:29 AM EST
I was warned off already.
--
Would you rather battle Klingons or trolls?
[ Parent ]
It has funky music by cam (4.00 / 1) #12 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 01:52:11 PM EST
and some of the scenes are cool when it is just music and action. But the plot is crap, and it jumps the shark on itself. I did not watch it the whole way through.

cam
Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

[ Parent ]
things I have learned watching the olympics by MillMan (4.00 / 3) #6 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:19:29 AM EST
GE is going to save the world with cars that run on water.

Vaginal chaffing is a bad thing.

Budwesier can stamp out underage drinking with your help. At the same time, they really really really really really really really want you to drink their beer.

I really like snowboardcross. It looks like a video game. I could probably navigate that course myself albiet at half speed of the olympians.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

I thought Monsanto and ADM by ad hoc (4.00 / 2) #10 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:35:23 AM EST
were going to save the world with cars running on corn.
--
Would you rather battle Klingons or trolls?
[ Parent ]
oh yeah that too by MillMan (4.00 / 1) #11 Mon Feb 20, 2006 at 11:38:48 AM EST
I forgot about that magical power source with its zero side effects.

I never really considered face-to-face contact a possible thing. -CRwM

[ Parent ]
cats n dogs by LilFlightTest (4.00 / 1) #15 Tue Feb 21, 2006 at 06:18:18 AM EST
i saw it with a bunch of friends, in the theatre, and we went at a time when we were fairly sure we'd be the only ones there. that movie works really well for MST3K.
Send me to Austria!
Lots o' stuff | 15 comments (15 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback