Thursday, September 28, 2006

New warehouse

Went out to Villepint (near CDG airport) this morning to scope out our new warehouse location.. in order to determine where to setup my laptop - look into network connectivity and stuff.. What I hadn't been told; was that the previous proprietor was one of the money transporting companies (e.g. Brink)..
Holy cow, they had some cool stuff there.. Alarm systems up the wazoo, cameras a go-go and old shitty coaxial ipx/spx network..

I managed to grab a few shots of the safe.. I could smell the money !!

One of (the many) alarm systems
A cool note telling you how to
enter the main safe. I grabbed one
and attached on my office door

The inside of a vault door

Big-ass vault

A note explaining the personal how to handle
used (and new) rounds for their guns

"Kevlar can save your life"

How much money can each truck carry ?

Gun control ?

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Extra curricular activities..

A few pics of me from this weekends festivities..

Protect & Serve

Preparing a Serbian Ice Tea

Monday, September 25, 2006

Friday traffic mess

What happens when you block Charles de Gaulle Etoile at friday afternoon rush-hour ?
People get pissed off !

My wife took a couple of pics of the mess:

The Long Hop Staff - "Au Complet"


Just thought I'd post a pic of the staff I work with on the weekends. This is to accustom Lasse to the people he will be spending next weekend with...

from left to right: Me, Charlotte, Guillaume, Olivia, Marko, Alice, Arnaud, and Eric.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Don't you just hate

people that post pretentious pictures of themselves. Let me tell you this. If you want to post flatering pictures of yourself, don't settle for a picture of yourself in a suite you bought in Marks & Sparks in front of that nice Mercedes down the road you don't own.... Go all the way.

Do you know what I mean?

The 17' Macbook Pro

Recently I did a few favours for a friend in the broadcasting business and in return he bought me a new Mac. That was nice as my girl friend had been wanting my old 15' Powerbook for a while. That's how things work in my house, at some stage my girl friend wants my laptop and so either I can stop having sex or buy a new one. I suspect I'm not the only one where things work like that at home but we'll leave that subject for another posting.

So firstly let me tell you that I have some experience with Macs. I have owned 12' and 14' iBook and several 15' Powerbooks before getting the new Intel based 17' Macbook Pro. I first came in to contact with Mac OS X at a FreeBSD conference in Brighton (South UK coast) I was attending with FreeBSD hacker Michael Hostbaek (Mich) that also blogs here. Anyhow what I liked about the operating system is the fact that it is based on Unix/BSD and so I was familiar with shell etc + I thought the GUI was nice and you could even run your office apps etc. Interestingly enough Steve Jobs also mentions Creative Professionels and Education customers but never spends much time on IT/Telecoms people for which the Mac OS X system is perfect.

After having run Mac for many years (pretty much since the first versions of OS X) I have always been extremely pleased with the performance and stability of the OS. Apps rarely crashed and configuring network stuff is easy. I am btw working in the Telecoms sector and I do a lot of technical work on the network level (around layer 2-5 if that means anything to you) and so the Unix tools that are available off the shelf leaves windows in the dust. Sure you CAN run Ethereal and other diag tools on windows but it's just not as nice and integrated as Unix.

Anyhow, back to the Macbook Pro. Firstly let me say that although I have installed bootcamp and Windows XP (as I wanted to play Red Alert II with my neighbour a while back - let me assure you I don't own a license for either) I'm not going to show you a screenshoot of that as it seems every other review does exactly that. Rather let me sho you the laptop with Expose.

Overall the Macbook Pro is a great Laptop. Mine has nice specs:

2.16Ghz Intel Core Duo
2 Gigs of memory
7200 spin 100GB disc
+ Mac niceties iSight, Apple Remote DVD drive that reads and writes every (current) format

As a network guy I btw like the fact that it comes with auto crossing (or whatever its called) gigabit capable NIC. I.e if you connect to another host or switch the mac will cross the connect or provide straightthrough connectivity regardless of the cable you use.

It also runs fast, noticeably faster than my old Powerbook (which was the fastest when they discountinued the Powerbook range).

The OS is still new on Intel and it is NOT AS STABLE as on the G4 processor. This is a shame. I'm sure it's not the processors fault, rather Apple has yet to clean up all the bugs.

So overall I think it's a great piece of hardware. It's very expensive - I paid £2000+ for mine, but if you don't care about money it's great. Really it's like a good bed or a nice car. If you use it a lot it makes sense to buy something nice.

The look and feel is also great. It's pretty and the design is clean and pleasant.

I would recommend it to anyone that's serious about their hardware.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Laptop thief gets screwed...

Saw this video on google earlier today !

A Berkeley professor gets his laptop stolen by some useless student on campus.. An act I'm sure he'll live to regret..

Watch it ! It's absolutely fabulous !

Monday, September 18, 2006

Police Water Truck - Up close and personal

Was walking around yesterday close to Bastille, and spotted a sweet vehicle 
that most people don't get to see up close.

This fine water-blaster truck was sitting on the curb, probably in standby, waiting for shit to hit the fan at the Techno Parade happening in Paris on Saturday.

and up close:


Thursday, September 14, 2006

Free BSD (!) Magazine in France!

Yes, it has happened! The very first FreeBSD (sorry, it's FreeBSD, not Free BSD...)
magazine has hit the kiosks in France. Well, calling it a magazine is maybe a bit 
"too much", as basically it's just a copy of Freebsd 6.1 and a light installation manual.
Nevertheless, it's a step in the right direction. Let's hope some people buy it, 
to keep it going, although at around 10 euros, it's pretty steep for something you can download for free...

Congrats anyways!

Here's the cover:

I took this at the Chatelet RER station - the dude behind the counter was looking at me pretty weird...

I want my lyrics..

Had some issues with lyrics fetching in Amarok for the last couple of weeks.. Haven't given it a lot of thought, until today - when I actually wanted the lyrics for a track.. (go figure..)
Some hunt it turned out to be..

When clicking the lyrics tab in Amarok, it would bitch about no script would be running.. When attempting to start lyrc - would give me the following error:
      /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:560:in `initialize': Connection refused - connect(2) (Errno::ECONNREFUSED)
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:560:in `open'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:560:in `connect'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/timeout.rb:48:in `timeout'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/timeout.rb:76:in `timeout'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:560:in `connect'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:553:in `do_start'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:542:in `start'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:1032:in `request'
from /usr/local/lib/ruby/1.8/net/http.rb:769:in `get'
from /usr/local/share/apps/amarok/scripts/lyrics_lyrc/lyrics_lyrc.rb:122:in `fetchLyrics'
from /usr/local/share/apps/amarok/scripts/lyrics_lyrc/lyrics_lyrc.rb:187
from /usr/local/share/apps/amarok/scripts/lyrics_lyrc/lyrics_lyrc.rb:172:in `loop'
from /usr/local/share/apps/amarok/scripts/lyrics_lyrc/lyrics_lyrc.rb:172

Basically, how the lyrc script works - it's by looking up a song (title and artist) on - and the parsing the lyrics.. (simplified..)
So started out by verifying that I could access the website - which I could.. So it's not a network problem...
Next - check proxy settings.. From #amarok on EfNet, I learned that Amarok gets its proxy settings from the KDE controlpanel.. No proxy settings were specified - as it should be.

Next - I managed to launch the script from Amarok scriptmanager (without actually looking up any lyrics) - and attach truss(1) to the PID - from which I could see that it would trying to connect to localhost on port 8888.... Interesting...
Looking over the lyrics_lyrc.rb source - more specifically the fetchLyrics function - I noticed the following:
    if ( @proxy == nil )
@proxy = `dcop amarok script proxyForProtocol http`
Running, the above command - would yield:
Back to KDE control panel and double-check the proxy settings.. still no problems there..
Finally, I did a recursive grep for localhost:8888 in ~/.kde/
The file ~/.kde/share/config/kioslaverc
had ProxyForProtocolHttp="http://localhost:8888"
I have absolutely no idea how it came to be there.. and I don't care.. I removed the file, and restarted Amarok - and voila.. lyrc works again !

Though, now I can't remember which lyrics I was looking for..

And a not so sober picture

Just to prove the last post... this is one of the not so sober pics...

Monday, September 11, 2006

Drinks at the Hop

Originally uploaded by mich_bsd.
Went out Saturday night for a couple of drinks at the Hop..
The Long Hop is a nice pub/bar in the 6th (right next the metro Maubert-Mutualite).. oh yeah, and that useless slacker buddy of mine, Dimbo, is working there on weekends..

On the pic: the incredible bar duo - Marco & Dimbo (rare photo, both of them conscious at the same time)

Friday, September 08, 2006

Spelling 101

Originally uploaded by mich_bsd.
"MAC DONALD'S" - wtf ?

I mean, the huge McDonald's building is *right* there.. All they had to do, to get it right, was to turn their heads... fools..

Do as we say, not as we do

Originally uploaded by mich_bsd.
French cops setting a good example as always....

(The license plate is not really fulfilling the requirements...)

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Amarok 1.4.3

Yessir - Amarok 1.4.3 was just released.

Mainly bugfixing - but a couple of nice new features; such as:

- DAAP Music Sharing with ZeroConf/RendezVous support
- Amarok File Tracking

Read more:

Amarok - rediscover your music

What is he selling..

Originally uploaded by mich_bsd.
On the way home from work yesterday, I saw this conspicious van parked close to my street.. ""....
I wonder what the pot man(d) from the Netherlands are delivering..