“This label is the target of a goto from outside of the block containing this label AND this block has an automatic variable with an initializer AND your window wasn’t wide enough to read this whole error message”

— MPW C error message

iTMS weekly reports


No, I didn’t buy another big batch of music from the iTunes Music Store yet, although I probably will soon, to stock up the iPod for my next road trip to Las Vegas. I have been keeping an eye on the store, though, and after corresponding with Brian Tiemann, I decided to investigate an oddity we’d both noticed: the week-by-week “Just Added” report ain’t no such thing.

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The Devil In Rachel Lucas


Psssst. Rachel’s making deviled eggs. Go thou and do likewise.

Mine are almost ready. Wish me luck.

Update: …and I saw that they were good.

I went with Alton Brown’s painless steaming method to prep the eggs, and then mixed the yolks with mayo, dry mustard, and Lone Star Steak Rub. Could have used a tad more spice rub, but they were still quite tasty. Of course, now I have to spend an hour on the cross-trainer to compensate for the calories.

Meaningless life


Is it just my copy, or is the new Meaning of Life DVD horribly choppy on most DVD players? I suspect that it will work fine on the one that supports progressive output, but all the others fall apart any time there’s any significant movement on screen. Deeply disappointing, since they all play other discs fine.

Update: I have four DVD players — seven if you count the computers — and only one can show this disc without serious tearing in almost every scene. That is, of course, the one that has progressive output, so there’s no interlacing. This is the only DVD I own that looks this bad with standard interlaced video; I don’t know what they did in the mastering process, but it sucks.

Big food


A relatively constant factor in my life is the weekend gaming/cooking session with friends. We have a large stable of entertaining games from companies like Cheapass, Steve Jackson, and (pre-Hasbro) Wizards of the Coast, and an Xbox or two. The recipes come from a variety of sources, including my still-under-construction online cookbook, built from assorted MasterCook-format archives.

This weekend was at my place, which gave me an excuse to do some massive house-cleaning and show off my newly-completed landscaping. Since I had so much cleaning work to do, I insisted that the meal should be relatively simple, which meant steaks.

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False alarm (whew!)


Bad: checking your server logs in the morning and finding 6000 refers from Fark.

Good: discovering it’s because someone in their forums deep-linked to a picture of a pretty girl, not because your entire photo library has just been Farked.

[it wouldn’t increase my hosting bill, but it would certainly slow things down for people; my bandwidth throttling is already holding the traffic at one-eighth of its old average]

Keep the day job, Hilary


Just in case anyone was wondering, her debut album provides no evidence that Hilary Duff can sing, or even that she has a voice to sing with. Generically slick production combines with blandly stupid lyrics and the most obvious electronic voice modification since Cher’s last hit, resulting in an album so forgettable that you’ll wonder what you’ve just thrown into the trash.

Fortunately she’s one of the most beautiful young women I’ve ever seen, because I think she’s the least convincing pop-tart in the business. And I like pop-tart music.

Curiously, the album photos, like many recent pictures of her, play down the fresh-faced beauty and open charm that made her a Disney Princess. I suppose they’re trying to separate Hilary-the-singer from Hilary-the-actress.

Makes sense, since only one of them has a future.

I love this kind of bug…


People often wonder what sysadmins do for a living. It’s a mostly-invisible profession, where you’re only noticed when things aren’t working. Mostly we solve problems, but often we first have to figure out what the problem really is.

I don’t want to know how long it took someone to get from “my password doesn’t work” to this:

If you used Open Firmware Password utility to create a password that contains the capital letter "U", your password will not be recognized during the startup process (when you try to access Startup Manager, for example).

Note that it applies to Mac models going back several years, but wasn’t posted on the support site until this week. No doubt there’s a small pile of bug reports that have been sitting around for all this time, with their status field set to “WTF?”.

Yeah, what he said


Lileks.

Not the bits about Sony, although I agree on that as well. I haven’t much liked them since they discontinued my favorite portable CD player (the one that had every function clearly separated onto different buttons).

No, skip down about halfway. Look for the word “Metafilter”. I grovel in praise of his ability to sum up what it is that I hate about that site. I visit often to find amusing links, but the moment I spot one of their typically rabid Leftie front-pagers, MEGO. There’s no point in replying, because it’s crystal clear that they simply wouldn’t comprehend that a reasonable person could legitimately disagree. You must be a troll, a freeper, or some other convenient label; you can’t actually be serious.

Notes:

  1. MEGO - My Eyes Glaze Over
  2. Freeper - as far as I can tell, this means "anyone to the Right of Michael Moore"

“Need a clue, take a clue,
 got a clue, leave a clue”