Posts 676 to 697:

Emma Marie

Family++    Love++    Mom has photos    ( :

Posted by Anthony on 1 reply

And Now...

With the switch from PHP to SSI/Perl, and the modifications to my visitorlog that allow it to run without any manual maintenance for log-rotating, I can now deploy my website system (blogger, vlog, stats, and photo-scripts) on other sites with minimal hassle.

Kim has a new website at and my scripts are running there.  I did most of the script-setup work, while Kim did most of the design work, except for me pestering her to say "ew, I don’t like that color..." :)  What’s particularly cool is that the whole site is running from her laptop.  Anyway, she’s got scads of photos, and heck, I’m even in some of them, so go see (:

Posted by Anthony on 2 replies

Get It Faster

For the past 8 weeks or so, I’ve been slowly re-coding parts of my website to improve performance and fix a few bugs.  The work has been focused mainly on my visitor logger and my weblog script, with one big exception: I switched the entire site from PHP to pure SSI+Perl.  I switched mainly because SSI/Perl can do everything that I had been using PHP for, with the added bonus that SSI is built into Apache and Perl is installed on every Linux server already (and easily installable on Win32 systems), whereas PHP is often not installed by default and is somewhat of a pain to configure.  (At least compared to Perl, which requires no configuration whatsoever.)

If none of that means anything to you, you can still appreciate the results of the performance improvements and bugfixes.  The site loads much faster now, because the visitor logger now automatically rotates its logfiles and caches the site stats, so it’s not scanning through tens of thousands of lines of logfile every time a page is loaded.  (But don’t look at the rewritten stats page yet; the tables still need to be organized into a more presentable layout.)

On the bug-fixing tip, the blogger’s spell-checker now properly ignores any special tags (notably links) in posts, so the preview no longer barfs when trying to display them.  I also fixed a bug that truncated any posts that contained both an image and a double-quote character, but of course you’ve never noticed that bug since I don’t allow people to post images unless they are logged in with an admin account, and only I have such an account around here :)  (Well, the blogger on the photos pages allows image-posting even for not-logged-in users.)

I also fixed the bug whereby if you entered a name into the site that contained spaces, the spaces would be displayed in their encoded form, as ’%20’ instead of ’ ’.  The fix was trivial, notwithstanding allegations that I had been "making excuses" for it, ostensibly because I didn’t feel like fixing it.  In the process, I also discovered an off-by-one bug in Apache, which will be fixed in the next release of that program.

In other news, my trusty old (OK, maybe just "old") 233mmx system recently decided to start booting again, so I’ll now start to debug the strange disappearing-text bug that some people have reported when using IE.

Posted by Anthony on 1 reply

Baby Moyer Update

For those of you who can tear yourselves away from the ever exciting google searches...

I am going to be induced on Monday night, hopefully we will have a baby sometime on Tuesday :)  Dan will be calling with the news...  Wish us luck :)

Posted by Tasha Moyer on 10 replies


It’s not that I want to keep posting these all the time, but they just keep pouring in... I’m #2 for:

Chief Elements of Krispy Kreme’s Strategy

Now THAT one I’m proud of  ( :

And interestingly, Belmont Club is #3, which is another blog that I frequent.

Posted by Anthony on reply

Rant For The Day

Go to this Launchcast support page and click on the "No" button, then type them a nice message like this:

This has to be some kind of joke, right?  Your software fails to work on all but 2 browsers on 2 operating systems?  So... your software doesn’t work at all for Linux users, it only works for Mac users if you use a browser that’s 3 years old, and it only works for Windows users if you use the most insecure program ever written as your web-browser.  Mozilla/Firefox is the most standards-compliant browser there is, it’s architecture is entirely open, and it runs on virtually every OS in existence; it can’t possibly be that hard to make Launchcast work with it...

Posted by Anthony on 6 replies

Endless Fun With Google

As you may have noticed, I am immensely entertained by the Google queries I find in my website’s referrer logs.  Barring the technical stuff, the things people are searching for are rarely found on my site, but sometimes they are.  I recently discovered that I am #5 for mcconnells mill photos and #13 #2 for just mcconnells mill, because of these photos.  Given that McConnells Mill is a really nice and big state park, that’s (apparently) pretty well-known around Pittsburgh, it’s kind of amazing that I’m #13 #2 overall for just the name itself.

I’m #2 for knee deep in nietzsche’s lies which is pretty cool.

Then I’m #8 for why does my screen blink whenever I click on something.  Come on people, it’s Google, not a magic 8-ball.  Generally speaking, treating Google like a librarian is not a good way to find what you’re looking for.  It’s not a person.  You need to put a few seconds of thought into your search efforts.

You have to remember that Google is just taking the words you enter and finding webpages that contain those words.  It’s not looking for "answers" to your input.  The state of search at this point in time just isn’t that intelligent, so your goal is to think of what terms would appear on a page that discusses your problem.  And the real secret to searching effectively is using phrases instead of individual words whenever possible.  The other day when someone found my site by searching for nonsense poems about moldy bread, they didn’t find what they were looking for.  Based on his query we can assume he wasn’t interested in nonsense poems about just any bread; it had to be moldy bread.  But that isn’t what he asked Google to find; he asked Google for all pages containing all of those words, even if "moldy" and "bread" appeared in completely different places on the page, as they do on mine.  What he should have done is put quotes around the phrase "moldy bread" in his search, because that tells Google that the pages must contain that exact phrase, not just the two separate terms independent of each other.

Of course, Google is programmed to try to figure out what you might have meant, in a crude sort of way, and will sometimes assume that if you have two words in a row, you might have wanted them to be a phrase, even though you failed to use quotes.  So you’ll probably see that the first results do indeed have either "nonsense poems" or "moldy bread" as phrases.  But again, search just isn’t that smart yet, so my site -- which contains neither of the phrases "nonsense poems" or "moldy bread" -- was still #10.  (Well, now I’m #2, but only because I now have a post containing that exact sequence of words.)

But back to the fun stuff: I’m #1 for when is googlebot coming.  (And he is, you know.)  (Coming.)  (For you.)  (Soon.)

Posted by Anthony on 2 replies

Double Standard (or, "White Male = Devil")

If you’re a white male, then your every action is potentially (nay, probably) motivated by some form of bigotry, bias, racism, sexism, or whatever the current -ism of the moment happens to be.  So goes the politically correct line of thought in America and much of the world today.  That’s why, for example, the only kind of person you’ll ever see being made fun of in a TV commercial is a white male.

Tonight I saw a commercial for Viactiv.  (It’s a calcium supplement for women.)  Guess what the last line in the commercial is?  "Because women should get exactly what they want."

Can you imagine what would happen if a commercial said, "because men should get exactly what they want"?  Every feminist on the planet would instantaneously simultaneously spontaneously combust, and the Earth would crash into the sun.

Posted by Anthony on 5 replies


I am #10 on Google for:

nonsense poems about moldy bread

My life is now complete.

Posted by Anthony on 2 replies


Posted by Anthony on 1 reply


epifagus:/Users/fgpbackup/backups root# ps -lax|grep rsync
su: ps: command not found
su: /usr/bin/grep: Too many open files in system

Thanks, Mac OS X.

Posted by Anthony on reply

New Rox This Weekend

Last week I (half-jokingly) posted on the Rox mailing list that it’d been two and a half months since there was a new release of the Rox Filer.  Then a couple days later, Thomas Leonard (Rox’s author) announced a new release for this weekend :)  Sweet.  The new release will contain a few fixes that I’m excited about, mainly much faster thumbnail generation when browsing image files.  Which was a bug that I also reported, after noticing that gThumb generates thumbnails about an order of magnitude faster than Rox.  It turned out that a simple single-line change in a few places -- using a function that allows you to specify the thumbnail size when allocating the buffer for the resized image, instead of a function that doesn’t -- was all it took to make Rox’s thumbnail generation almost just as fast as gThumb’s.  I wasn’t the one who found the solution, but I’m glad it was so easy, and I’ve been anxious for the new version.

Posted by Anthony on reply

Meriam-Webster help

Under the category of ’let me drop everything and work on your problem’, could you add ’auto spell correction’ to your preview of weblog posts for your spellingly challenged Mom?

Thanx :>}

Posted by Mom on 1 reply


Dude, check this news headline.

Why are you going to school when you can work for the best place to work for with a high school education.  Think about all the free stuff too.

Posted by kaiser on 1 reply

Some Random Stuff

I’m not obsessive about cleanliness or neatness in general, but when it comes to anything that I’m going to ingest, eat off of, or which will TOUCH any such thing (i.e. people’s hands who are preparing things I will eat), I definitely am obsessive about cleanliness.  However I wasn’t always this way, and as a kid, I put a coin in my mouth at least one time.  I have no idea why, really.  But for some reason I distinctly remember the taste and feeling of it even now.  I also have no idea why that is, nor why I thought of it while driving yesterday.

My little sister IMed me this the other day, about our cat CJ:

Maria: hi
Maria: there was a spider on the ceiling and mom wacked it on the floor and CJ batted it around for a while untill it stopped movin (it wasn’t dead, it was just scared) and then he licked it up. a live spider!!!
Maria: eeeeeeeeeeeew!

"A live spider!!!"  That cracks me up  : )

In other news that isn’t funny or random, I fixed a problem on Kim’s notebook yesterday, for which she sent it back to HP twice and they did nothing but wipe the hard drive and leave the problem intact.  The problem was that it would sporadically just shut down for no reason at all, and then refuse to turn back on.  They apparently couldn’t identify the cause of problem, which is strange because it’s a common problem with notebook computers.  It stems from the fact that over time, as the receptacle for the power plug gets jostled and worn, the solder joints connecting it to the motherboard start to weaken and break.  It gets to the point that if you turn the power plug a certain way, it works fine, but bump it just a tad, and it breaks the contact.  Eventually, if it goes long enough without being repaired, there is no contact at all unless you press/hold the plug to one side, or up or down or something, and when you let go, it loses the contact immediately.

We disassembled the whole thing, which with notebooks is always a little tricky, and then I re-soldered the 3 connections for the power jack.  But upon re-assembling and testing, it was no different.  Which was pretty frustrating because the disassembly and re-assembly is quite a process -- not that it’s hard, but it’s sort of tedious because there are so many screws and different pieces which aren’t standard at all from one notebook to the next.  But I ended up doing it 3 times so by now I’m pretty good at it :)

The second time, I removed the jack completely and just soldered two wires directly into the motherboard.  This didn’t work either.  My last resort was to try maybe soldering the top of the board, too; instead of just soldering the pins when they come through the bottom, I now put some on the top too.  This was tough because there’s so little space and so many components right around the jack, in addition to the fact that the jack itself is tall and there isn’t much room to get the tip of the iron into the space around it.  I replaced the crusty old tip on my soldering iron with a nice pointy new one, soldered the tops of the pins, and that fixed the problem.

I’m pretty excited that it finally worked, because the only other source of power is the battery, which charges in the laptop through this power connection.  So basically the computer would be trash, even though the rest of the system is mostly fine, and it’s decently spec’d too -- 700MHz PIII, 384MB memory, 40gig drive, etc.  So I was really glad to be able to save the poor lappy; it’d be such a shame to have to get rid of it over something like this.

Posted by Anthony on 7 replies

Only You Can Prevent Bandwidth Theft

Not only is the site hideous, not only is it apparently written by a 22-going-on-13-year-old who just learned the F-word, not only is it infested with those irritating look-how-cool-I-am posed self-portraits, but the person is embedding a Reggie track from MY server as the background-sound for her little website.  Not downloading the song and then uploading it to her myspace account, mind you -- heaven forbid she should actually do any WORK or use any of her OWN bandwidth for her background sounds -- oh no, she is PLAYING THE SONG FROM MY SERVER DIRECTLY.

Did I mention that I propose a mandatory test for any person wishing to publish anything, anywhere, on the internet?  Oh yes, I do.  I propose this test: if you are not an ignorant jerk, then you are allowed to put things on the internet.  If you are an ignorant jerk, then instead of being allowed to post things on the internet, you get a kick in the face.

I think that’s reasonable.

Posted by Anthony on 5 replies

Not Sick

Over the Christmas / New Year’s holiday, I spent 10 days in close proximity to a bunch of people in various stages of sickness, and I didn’t get a thing from it.  That seems to be the way with me; sometimes I feel like Bruce Willis in Unbreakable.  I’m telling you, those One-a-Day multi-vitamins are key.

Posted by Anthony on 3 replies

Best Of 2004

These are my top-ten lists for 2004... except that none of them have ten items.


Marcona almonds: these are big spanish almonds.  I get them at Wegmans, they come in a little plastic container with a little bit of canola oil and sea salt.  I guess they’re just nuts, but they are delicious.

UTZ Pub Mix: "A Savory Blend of Crunchy Snacks."  Also known as "Phat Mix" in some quarters.  I didn’t used to like this when my brother Brian would get it by the pound from snack vendor stands at malls etc, but this UTZ version is really good.  Anyway, from the bottom label, it consists of: Honey Mustard & Cheddar Cheese Twistix, Worcestershire Rye Chips, Honey Roasted Sesame Chips, Oriental Rice Crackers, Pretzel Stix, Nacho Bagel Chips.

Wegmans "Famous Chocolate Chip Mini Cookies."  Just what it says -- little chocolate chip cookies that are so good they are (or should be) famous.  They are soft.  (This is actually from 2002 but I didn’t do a best-of list then, so shut it.)

Wegmans Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies.  Peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips.  Sorta soft.  These might be my favorite cookies of all time.  Also a 2002-debuting item.

Moose Munch: carmel popcorn, some of which is chocolate-covered, and also including nuts (cashews and walnuts depending on where you get it).  Quite possibly the overall best sweet snack of all time.

Albums: an asterisk (*) indicates an album that wasn’t actually released in 2004, but I didn’t find out about it or get it till 2004.  These are in no particular order.

Taking Back Sunday / "Where You Want To Be" / indie|screamo

Emery / "The Weak’s End" / hard rock|indie|screamo

Jimmy Eat World / "Futures" / modern rock|indie

Straylight Run / "Straylight Run" / indie|dual-vocals-male+female

Pigeon John / "Pigeon John is Dating Your Sister" * / rap|hip-hop|not gangsta|not evil

The Alpha Conspiracy / "Aura" / ambient|techno|IDM, maybe somewhat dance

Telefon Tel Aviv / "Map of What is Effortless" / ambient|techno|IDM, but not dance

Freemartin / "An Escape Seems Appropriate" / fast pop-punk|indie

My American Heart / "My American Heart" / modern rock|indie|screamo

Rainer Maria / "Long Knives Drawn" * / indie|rock|female vocals

Beth Orton / "Daybreaker" * / semi-folksy pop|female vocals

The Early November / "The Room’s Too Cold" * / indie|pop-punk|acoustic

The Starting Line / "Say it Like You Mean it" * / pop-punk|indie

Best of the best:
posted image Kim, of course  ( :

Posted by Anthony on 9 replies

... and another thing

Man, your preview thing for the posts isn’t working.  I go to preview and I see it for a split second before the font size decreases and the text disappears.  Then I can highlight with my cursor to see the text but something else weird happens.  When I highlight down page it disappears again after I click somewhere else on the page.  If I highlight up page and click somewhere else the text stays and your highlighted spell correct is fine. 

I am using the unholy IE so it may be attributed to that.  I just don’t have Mozilla at work and I rarely use it at home because most normal web pages are designed for IE.

Posted by kaiser on 2 replies

Brainy women face handicap in marriage stakes: British survey

I think there are 3 reasons for this.  The first is in the article and men just want women like their "mum". 

The second is because career women don’t have time for a family.  Men want off-spring and we don’t want it to coincide with our mid-life-crisis. 

The last reason, which I think is one of the biggest amongst many males:  Men find dumber women more attractive for some reason.  I believe that this is because smarter women intimidate dumber men.  This reason perturbs me the most.  Men should be grateful to have a smart woman to back them up.  I know I am.  I’m pretty sure Anthony is (just kidding man).  Just suck it up men.  You don’t have to be the best at everything.  And if you are out for looks, those will fade in 10 years.  In 20 years they will be pretty much gone.  The "person" inside those looks will be there forever.

Posted by kaiser on 1 reply

Here's to 2005!

Thanks for the fun in 2004!  Have a great new year Anthony! 

(We in CA get to say it 3 hours later)

Posted by Patrick Copland on 1 reply

Crapplebee's Strikes Again

I want to like Applebee’s.  I really do.  And it actually has a lot going for it: usually not smoky, usually not too long of a wait, clean bathrooms with automatic paper towels and a trash can behind the door, so you don’t have to touch the handle of the door, which 75% of men touch after using the bathroom and NOT washing their hands...

But I’ve only been to Applebee’s a handful of times in my life, and every single time there is a problem with the order.  I usually get steak when I go out, and the steak here is always overcooked; I order medium-rare and it comes out medium-well.  To be fair many places just can’t seem to get steak right, however a few places like Olive Garden and Outback consistently get it right, i.e. they cook it the way you order it.

Tonight was especially ridiculous, though.  I ordered a steak with mushrooms, and this particular steak comes with peppers and onions, which I asked them to omit.  The waitress noted all this.  But the steak came out -- overcooked but that is no surprise -- without mushrooms.  But at least they correctly omitted the peppers and onions, right?  Until I got to the bottom of my mashed potatoes and discovered that THE PEPPERS AND ONIONS WERE UNDERNEATH THE POTATOES.  You have got to be kidding me.

I also ordered a side-dish of vegetables.  These came out raw.  Not "just a little cooked."  They were not cooked.  I like my vegetables soft, but I had Kim verify because she likes hers crunchy.  She agreed these weren’t merely crunchy, they were raw.

Back to the mushroom situation.  Kim ordered a chicken dish that comes with mushrooms and cheese, but she asked to have it without the mushrooms.  Sure enough, "hidden" underneath a few slices of melted cheese, there were mounds of mushrooms.  Not only that, but literally two of them were sauteed; the other 10-15 or so were just raw mushrooms.

Every time I go to Applebee’s, I think hey, it’s been a while, they’ve probably gotten their act together by now.  I’ll give it a shot.  At some point I’m going to have to stop pretending.

Posted by Anthony on 6 replies

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