Archive for July, 2007

Why Antivirus is unnecessary in a controlled environment that uses DriveShield

Tuesday, July 10th, 2007

This is a short essay-style piece I wrote on my own time a few weeks ago to defend my position of not putting antivirus in our computer labs. I presented this to a group of lab managers here, and I lost the battle with them for political reasons and because they focused on macro viruses too much, which I didn’t look into at first because of they barely exist anymore!! Notwithstanding, I think the technical merits of my argument can stand fairly well anyways, and is a good read anyways. Keep in mind that this is talking about tightly managed machines with something like DriveShield or Deep Freeze on the computer. For perspective, the antivirus vendor we use is Symantec antivirus (which I despise). This paper does not reflect the position or opinions of anyone except myself.


Blaming Mr. Rogers

Sunday, July 8th, 2007

Heh… a recent study shows this generation is more narcissistic and selfish than previous generations. Probably true, no doubt. A professor at Louisiana State University blames childhood influences such as Mr. Rogers to telling us that we don’t need to work for what we get. Hmm… evil Mr. Rogers :p

Of course, the best statement in the second article has to be this: “By 2006, they said, two-thirds of the students had above-average scores, 30 percent more than in 1982.” Wait, so isn’t average the mean, which means you are always going to have at most half above it? Heh.. of course, they’re probably talking about the cumulative average over decades of research, but still…

jQuery rocks

Saturday, July 7th, 2007

Have you used jQuery yet? I know its been around for awhile, but I’ve only recently been using it. Of course, there are other similar javascript frameworks out there. jQuery makes javascript development ‘fun’, according to the website, and I would definitely agree. It makes so many mundane things way easy and quick to do. If you aren’t using it for your web applications, I’d definitely recommend it. I’m using it in my LOLCats generator demo page, and in my website stats analysis program (which will be formally announced and released in the near future), and it definitely allows you to do some really crazy things quickly.

LOLCat Creator Generator

Friday, July 6th, 2007

For those of you who have used my LOLCat Generator script, you would be happy to know that I’ve improved it slightly — now using it on images that have white backgrounds works decently. Things the LOLCat Creator can do:

  • Put a caption in any of the corners, with wordwrap
  • Generate from any one of the few random cat pictures I have on the site
  • Generate from any URL of an image that you give it

A lot of people have been using it, and there are some pretty amusing pictures that have been generated. I’ll have to post the best ones. 🙂

LOLCat Generator Page

Facebook Vs. Myspace

Monday, July 2nd, 2007

Some study just hit the news recently (that I lost the link to) about Facebook and Myspace demographics, and apparently Facebook appeals to more sophisticated users (college people, professionals), and Myspace appeals to kids. What a shock.

Theres a good reason Facebook is growing rapidly. Its not filled with crap like myspace is (and you can at least ignore the crap in facebook, while myspace throws it at you), and in the words of many of my peers… it now has the stigma of AOL. You know, how in the late nineties (and now) anyone who used AOL was a total n00b? Yeah, thats what myspace is now. Its for kids.

Of course, facebook keeps adding on more crap to the site… they better watch out, or it will be the same thing as myspace. We like the clean look and easy navigation.  Thats the #1 reason I’ve heard from people about why they use facebook. Its clean. Don’t screw with it too much.

Note: I swear I will have a more useful post next time. Like, about my new web stats program that I’m developing because I’m tired of the existing ones not telling me what I want to see so I have to run grep…


Fixing MySQL InnoDB problems on Gentoo

Sunday, July 1st, 2007

For some reason, transactions weren’t working on my MySQL installation on my Gentoo server, despite me creating the tables as InnoDB tables. I poked around and discovered that InnoDB wasn’t enabled for some reason, so I figured upgrading MySQL should do the trick. So I went ahead and upgraded my version to 5.0.40 and I got the following great error:

InnoDB: Error: ib_logfiles are too small for innodb_thread_concurrency 8.
InnoDB: The combined size of ib_logfiles should be bigger than
InnoDB: 200 kB * innodb_thread_concurrency.
InnoDB: To get mysqld to start up, set innodb_thread_concurrency in my.cnf
InnoDB: to a lower value, for example, to 8. After an ERROR-FREE shutdown
InnoDB: of mysqld you can adjust the size of ib_logfiles, as explained in
InnoDB: Cannot continue operation. Calling exit(1).

After doing a number of things including deleting the databases (I don’t have anything important in it at the moment, just for testing) and rebuilding them and other weirdness, its turns out all I needed to do was increase innodb_log_file_size to 2M from 1M and it was fine. So thats ok, and that error went away… in retrospect, it seems like an obvious solution. Very annoying that it wasn’t set to that by default.

But still “SHOW VARIABLES LIKE ‘have_innodb'” is showing DISABLED. So InnoDB is still not enabled. So to fix this thing, I go back in and rm -rf /var/lib/mysql , and then run emerge –config =dev-db/mysql-5.0.40… and when I log back into the mysql console, it works. Seriously, wtf?

Conclusion: InnoDB is a picky thing. Make sure your config is correct.