Allergies

Spring is here! In my world, that means baseball is back, school is almost over (but not winding down) and the flowers are in bloom… which means my eyes are itching like crazy.

I’ve never had really intense allergies that require a perscription or anything like that; it’s more often than not just a minor annoyance for about two weeks while the pollen is really heavy. But seriously, why can’t I have allergies in the winter time? If things have to go bad, I might as well get it all out of the way at one time, right?

  • In computer world, particularly Linux world, the big news of this week is Ubuntu 8.04′s launch on Thursday. I’ve never really liked Ubuntu, as most of you who read this blog know, but it’s nice that it’s able to make Linux so easy for those who want to pose as computer nerds for a while or those who are too cheap to buy a copy of Windows and too lazy to pirate it. One thing Ubuntu has got going for it, however, is a lot of driver support – when I installed 7.10 on my laptop a few months ago, the wireless just worked, there was no fiddling with getting firmware, cutting it up and then wrapping the drivers with NDISWrapper.

    I’m using Fedora 8 (Werewolf…I know, Ubuntu’s codenames are much cooler) on my laptop and on my desktop. I’ll probably keep it on my desktop for a while as part of a dual boot system – Fedora does a great job at doing what it needs to do. On my laptop, however, I like it more and more every time I try it but at this point it still doesn’t quite have the polish that Windows XP has. (For example, for some reason when I move my mouse around in this textarea while editing this blog post, Firefox decides it needs to grab the icon of the Blogger favorites icon and insert the URL into the post. First of all, why would I ever want to do that? And secondly, where do I shut that off?) I like the prospect of using Linux exclusively on my laptop (primarily because instead of having to install bloatware like Dreamweaver and Acrobat Pro I can get much better software that doesn’t use as many resources), but I’m not quite there yet.

  • Today is Earth Day, meaning Google has their obligatory Earth Day logo and everyone else is all “save the Earth!”. Still not sure what the point of Earth Day is – sure, we can all respect the environment today, but tomorrow… I mean, we have to go to work, right?
  • The Indians play the Royals tonight, C.C. Sabathia vs. Gil Meche. Given these two starters’ ERA thus far, this is a pretty unfair matchup. But C.C. has to turn it around sometime, right? There may be no better time than tonight.

    In other Indians news, Jake Westbrook got put on the 15-day DL (I have no idea why, he seemed fine the other night), and Ben Francisco was recalled to the Major Leagues. If I were Eric Wedge, I’d start Francisco tonight and see what he does. The offense needs a spark, particularly in left field.

  • Quote of the Day:
    If life throws you a curveball, take it to right field.

    Rick Manning, color commentator, STO

On a final note, it’s nice to have The Office back, isn’t it? Looking forward to the rest of the season, even though its shorter than it’s supposed to be, because word is that NBC ordered 30 episodes for next fall. Until later, stay well and enjoy the weather!

Musings

Hello blogosphere! After what I know must feel like forever, I’m back and writing some stuff on this thing. So much to discuss, so I’ll just kind of go down a list.

  • “You Decide” 2008: Please, please, please, please do not vote for Hillary Clinton. I’ve determined that if you are absolutely inclined to vote democratic, that Barack Obama might actually be your best choice. Here are some reasons why the other two (anyone actually believe Gravel and Kucinich have a shot? Stop reading this blog immediately):
    1. John Edwards has absolutely no idea that the campaign is a competition. Has anyone seen this guy? He’s lost every state he’s run in, and invariably, after the votes are in and its determined he’s lost, he CELEBRATES! I think we can predict what would happen if he were elected: something would eventually happen that would tick China off, they would attack us, they would win in a war. But President Edwards would say, “It’s okay America! We came in SECOND! YEAAAAAAAH!”
    2. Hillary Clinton lies like her husband. I wonder if anyone in the Clinton family has ever told the truth (voluntarily, anyway)…
    3. For all of you liberals who complain that by this time next year, we will have had a Bush in office for 12 of the past 20 years, there is a conservative that feels the same way about the Clinton family. Regardless of your beliefs, regardless of how much you hate one party or the other, you cannot possibly argue that having the country run by two families for 24 years (or more, if, God forbid, Clinton gets reelected in 2012) is good for this country.
    4. Of the three candidates, Obama has been in politics the shortest amount of time…which is a good thing. The longer you’re in politics, the less likely you are to do what is right over what is popular.

    A few of you might recall that I’ve supported Rudy Giuliani for president for a long time. I liked his national security strategy and his record on crime, as well as a lot of his social and economic views. However, when it comes time to vote on Super Tuesday, my vote will go towards Mike Huckabee. Let me tell you why:

    1. No negative campaigning. The fact that Huckabee has not released any ads attacking his peers has greatly helped his campaign, and for me has increased his likability. One of his main mantras is “Americans want their president to remind them of a guy they work with, not the guy they work for.” That’s a great attitude to have. A lot of other candidates say they “work for the American people”, but I like the idea of a team setting from the beginning. It’s a fantastic vision of what American can be. And the fact that he hasn’t gone on the offensive and attacked any of his peers shows his difference from the other candidates.
    2. No more IRS! This idea is probably the main reason I’m voting for Huckabee. The IRS has become a bureaucratic mess. Here’s a question: how many of your tax dollars go directly towards funding the effort to collect taxes again next year? I do not have an exact figure, but getting rid of that from the budget leaves more money for more important things. But the main thing is that it doesn’t tax Americans on their INCOME. It encourages more conservative spending, and could help to fix a lot of things wrong in the economics of the basic American family.
    3. Accountability. Huckabee has already admitted several mistakes he has made and has held himself accountable. His weight, which was astronomical just a few years ago, has gone down because he started watching what he ate and exercising, not because of a miracle drug or liposuction. His policy on Iraq has also changed. He was not a supporter of the surge earlier in the year but has admitted that he was wrong and that the surge is working. For the record, he also believes the war in Iraq should be WON, not just ended.
    4. Social issues. Pro-life, against gay marriages but for gay rights, against amnesty towards illegal aliens.
    5. The most important issue: endorsed by Chuck Norris. Need I say more? His Chuck Norris commercial was pretty humorous, and he’s said some pretty funny stuff in debates as well which only increases the guy’s likability.

    Apart from Huckabee, I would still support Giuliani and McCain in a general election (against Obama). But if it were Mitt Romney… I actually think I would cross party lines and vote Obama. I don’t agree with everything Obama says, but I think he would be a much better president than Romney.

    And those are some of my political views of late.

  • Technology world: A few random ramblings:
    • Since November 26 (my last post), I’ve tried Fedora 8, Ubuntu, Xubuntu, Debian, Ubuntu again, Fedora 8 again and Linux Mint. Clearly I had some issues with a few distributions :). I stuck with a Fedora 8 installation on my desktop and and going to install Linux Mint on my laptop at some point fairly soon. I’ve really liked Fedora thus far, I only had some minor issues with graphics and sound, and Linux Mint seems like a great distribution for my laptop because it comes with a lot of codecs and drivers preinstalled. I may try an openSUSE installation on my laptop too, it seems like that offers some interesting new features as well.
    • The MacBook Air. At least its not the iPhone (in terms of hype). I would seriously recommend against getting this, even if you are a Mac person, even if you really need an ultra-light computer. It’s overpriced, it’s underpowered, and I imagine the first models will overheat like no other laptop ever has.
  • Had some free time, so I wrote a sleep timer app for Windows PCs. Check it out if you want.
  • I’ve also checked out some new languages, including Python, which I am already a huge fan of.

In other news, I’m in Operating Systems as I finish this post and we’re talking about process control. The C function for creating a new process is the system call fork(), the professor is Asian… so he pronounces it as “f***”. The result is pretty hysterical, I’ve about lost it a couple times already:

“How do you create child process? Call fork(). The parent process will fork() and create a child process.”

The slant rhyme makes me wonder if the designers of C had this in mind when they were choosing what to call things.

I think that’s all I have for now. I’ll post more when I can.