* Posts by Damian Wheeler

6 posts • joined 27 Sep 2007

Irate sysadmin locks San Francisco officials out of network

Damian Wheeler
IT Angle

Sysadmin is an ironic position

Its kinda wierd being a DBA or sysadmin. If you HAVE done your job properly, you should be sitting back and reading the paper. That means the systems are running properly and you aren't running around putting out fires and fixing problems. You are retained for your experience and ability to plan upgrades or recover from disasters, not to be constantly busy. It isn't terribly clear in what way he was a poor performer, or was it that someone objected to his salary?

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Mozilla CEO blasts Apple for putting security of the internet at risk

Damian Wheeler
Thumb Down

It doesn't end there...

If you see Safari in your update prompts and uncheck the others, and select the option (under the options menu) to ignore selected updates, it'll be removed from your list. BUT... the next time there is an update for safari it will be a different update and so will prompt you again to install it.

I've got quicktime (for some websites that want it) and not itunes but can't banish it from the list forever. :(

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Oz admits $85m p0rn filtering FAIL

Damian Wheeler

There is no simple answer. A promise no government can keep

Brian, do you have kids? Doubt it.

We aren't talking about 5 year olds here, its pre-teen to teen kids. You can't sit and watch the kid all the time. Physical keys haven't been on PC cases for years (unless you have a server case). But you can do other things like remove the keyboard and power cord. But here's some reality checks for you:

1) I don't like people looking over my shoulder when I'm trying to work why would a kid.

2) Kids need some privacy to chat with their mate about that hot chick/stud at school. Can't do that with parents watching

3) More than one kid of that age in the house? more than one computer? can't watch them all.

4) I want my evening time to myself, or to continue my work, or to also be on a computer, not supervising net usage. My wife has a life too.

5) Maybe I don't want my internet line filtered at the ISP because I don't want my speed hampered or I don't care if I see the odd bit of filth on my own PC?

Install password protected commercial filtering on the Kids PC(s) and use a strong password on my own, and randomly check what they are doing online. The main problem is the parents who aren't tech-savvy. They just have to be strict with the kids time on the net and be clear with them that there will be lots of trouble if they are caught looking at things they know they shouldn't be. Other than that if you can't trust your kids to do the right thing, then they can't use the computer.

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The Electric Car Conspiracy ... that never was

Damian Wheeler

horses for courses

As pointed out in the article, electric vehicles may be fine for daily commutes, but long trips, hauling things or seating more people may require a different beast. A large proportion of USA have more than one car in the household, sometimes more than one per person. Many motorsport participants have their daily car(s) and a "Tow car" which is only used to pull the race car to the track. Horse racing people often the same only using the v8 to pull the horse float. For a long trip the other option is to hire a car for a vacation. I know that sounds too '80s or perhaps to touristy but for one vacation a year it makes more sense than running the bigger car all year.

There are other considerations in the US though. The "pickup" is classed as a truck, and so doesn't need to conform to emissions or safety levels as cars do, which makes them appear cheaper. They also qualified the purchaser for tax concessions/rebates in many states, seeming cheaper again. Their government has encouraged people to use these 7ltr petrol v8 American built monsters instead of light japanese or european diesel trucks where haulage is needed, or simply a family car and a trailer for occasional use. My point being it isn't necessarily the consumers fault. The options presented to them are skewed towards what the manufacturers have colluded together to "push" on the market. No overseas companies make a pickup (closest thing is the Aussie ute, or the old Subaru Brumby) so they don't need to compete with imports in that class.

I think in most 2 car households, there is room for at least one efficient commuter car be it electric, hybrid, small turbo diesel or even .... the bus.

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TV-Links man: 'I'm no master criminal'

Damian Wheeler

remember MP3s4Free?

A case a few years ago in Aus (I know its not UK, but it isn't USA either) similar to this ended badly for the little guy. This guy ran a site dedicated to linking to illegal MP3's also under the excuse that links aren't illegal. He was also an ex-cop so thought he knew where he stood. Plug "mp3s4free case" into your favourite search engine.

Most pages these days containing link also contain clickable ads to bring in funds to support hosting the page. If TV-links man had this arrangement then he could be profiting from providing the links (as that is the reason people visit his pages). That would also be bad for him.

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PHP victory over Ruby: was Gosling right?

Damian Wheeler

What the customer asks for isn't what he wants

We see customers destroying perfectly working software packages with this kind of project mentality. "Give us your package with all these features.... but make it work just like the system we already have". Sounds like he did the same thing. Lets change languages and database platforms (why not the operating system too eh?) but make it do exactly what the existing system does please. As someone else pointed out, having the guru developer on the project just meant he wanted to solve the little problems in detail. He needed to hire (and listen to) a project manager and application designer who would push back earlier and design new applications to make use of the new features and framework. Ruby scales fine with clustered servers too. There are a number of large sites out there using it.

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