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Karma

Started: 2004-01-19 20:04:38

Submitted: 2004-01-19 20:57:42

Visibility: World-readable

I managed to increase my karma this weekend through the subtle application of a single desktop computer.

Those present at the recent New Year's gathering will recall the computer I used for most of the Gathering (when I wasn't playing Kohan on Ziyal or Pikmin on Bitscape's GameCube): Titania, Gem's old desktop computer. Its usefulness had waned significantly in the past year; in early December, Gem handed it over to my control, and my plan for a while was to convert it into my network gateway and web server, allowing me to be a little more free with Ziyal. I successfully upgraded to Sarge and almost had a copy of my webpage up by the end of my Christmas break. I plugged Titania in on my external network and actually had her up and running for a while.

After her iMac died, I managed to rescue my mother's e-mail from the backups I made, which I was able to import into Mozilla Mail without breaking a sweat. I gave my mother an account on Nimitz to see if Linux was ready for her desktop. She seemed to do ok, except for the fact that Willy was quite used to the idea of having his own computer. At the World Premier of The Gate last week, Mom managed to greatly disturb Willy by logging him out while he was uploading the web video. I was present and able to help him resume the upload (which involved figuring out that Hydrogen's ftp server felt like being brain-damaged). Back in my apartment, Gem suggested we loan Titania to my mother, since we weren't exactly using it, and it would go a long ways to promoting peace and domestic tranquility in Boulder. I thought it was an excellent idea.

Saturday morning, just before running off to church (where I advanced slides for the congregation to sing to, among other things), I swapped a few pieces of hardware on Titania and tossed it into Yoda. Late in the afternoon after dinner at my parents' house, after Gem had gone home, I drug out Titania and set it up on my mother's desk. All was well at first, at least until I decided to reboot to make sure everything was working... and I got a kernel panic. I tried a few things before it became obvious what had happened: the kernel modules I compiled on Titania managed to corrupt themselves in some subtle and obnoxious manner, rendering them useless until I can fix the problem. (I have the odd habit of compiling my Ethernet drivers as modules, which doesn't help matters.) It's getting late, and I finally head home, where I compile a new kernel and modules on Ziyal and burn it onto a cd-rw. Sunday afternoon Gem and I head back to my parents' house, where we find no one home. After a few boot cds I find the right one to do the trick for Titania. I'm able to install the kernel-image package I built and boot to it without incident. All that remains is to be picked up again by Gem, who got stuck trying to drop off a key to the new church secretary and got her ear talked off for an hour while I tried to amuse myself.

With any luck, there will be peace and tranquility at the Logan household, at least until Willy starts filming his next film.

Bitscape, age 26, is a highly sought white hat hacker and an agent of
social subversion. An avid fan of salsa, developer-centric web design,
and cheesy pop music, Bitscape co-creates a world of love and
acceptance by sharing his vision. He enjoys helping low-tech firms
define their offline strategy, and he's advised many anonymous
unknowns, including the homeless on Pearl Street, escaped mental
patients, and hookers on East Colfax. As an aspiring web bum, he
applies his knowledge to a community venture, the Content Collective.
Bitscape resides in Westminster, Colorado, but may soon be moving into
a van down by the river. For speaking arrangements, don't bother
calling. Your bits will be lost in the noise.
- Bitscape's Lounge splash screen, October 2002