more DNS-323…

one of my biggest pet peeves about the DNS-323 hacks is that there doesn’t appear to be any easy way to automate the download of torrents to the mldonkey client. mldonkey works great once you get the torrent file to it, but getting the torrent file to it can be a bit tricky.

sure there’s a web interface to do it, or you can sancho in, but i have grown accustomed to utorrent’s automatic RSS parsing features. what made utorrent’s RSS feed especially cool was that you can tag a show to be downloaded and once the file was downloaded, it won’t try to download the show again, even if you delete the file while the torrent is still in the RSS feed.

mldonkey doesn’t have any out-of-the-box features to do this and adding a torrent to mldonkey from the command-line is harder than you would expect. maybe i haven’t found the command-line way to do it, but i haven’t been able to find it yet.

anyway, i have finally decided to install PHP on the NAS box. this gives me a whole slew of new options. a little scripting magic later (i wish that the version of PHP i got had curl support) , i made an RSS parser, torrent downloader, and telnet client to access mlnet’s admin telnet command line program. all in all, the script seems to be working well after cron’ing it, so i’ve got the same functionality that i had before. yay. now it’s just time to make a list of all the things to download…

a diamond by any other…seller

is a costco diamond ring any less meaningful than a tiffany ring? i didn’t say valuable because it seems that tiffany believes that their jewelry is far more valuable than anyone else’s. how would you feel on this valentine’s day, you proposed/were proposed to with a costco ring? would that makes things any less meaningful? does it matter where your ring is from?

i was at costco picking up some lunch and noticed that costco sells diamond rings. a lot of them. one would imagine that the price of the costco rings must be pretty competitive and the value would be reasonably good. i’ve actually heard that costco diaminds are of high quality.

so why is it that the diamond ring counter at costco wasn’t that busy today? why is it that it hasn’t been noticeably more busy in recent weeks?

yes, today is valentine’s day. it’s a day marked with emotions high and low. a day of stress, a day of happiness, a day of high expectations. i was watching tv today and they said that men, on average, spend $136 on valentine gifts. women, on the other hand, spend an average of $68. 1

valentine’s day is also the #1 holiday for floral sales. while i was driving around today, i saw a bunch of temporary flower stands at street corners all along my commute to work. i guess it’s true, everybody is trying to cash in on this valentine’s day.

some people call today single’s awareness day. i think that’s pretty funny. whatever the case may be, i hope that all of you have a wonderful february 14th.

  1. []

DNS-323 review

i bought a d-link dns-323 a little while ago. it is an embedded linux NAS device. plop two SATA drives in it, plug it in to the ethernet port and it’s ready to go.

from a performance standpoint, it does reasonably well. on the wire, it does about 10-12MB/s. in my wireless network, it has no problems streaming out the files to my media device. pure speed was not really as important as network storage was for me and this device has been doing great in those regards.

Continue reading DNS-323 review

i love

i don’t know how i learned about, but they are a new shoe store powered by they have a pretty decent selection of shoes and sandals. i actually ordered my wedding flip flops from them. they currently offer -$5 overnight delivery. that’s right, they pay you $5 to ship something overnight. crazy, huh?

i ordered something from them this morning and it is expected to arrive sometime tomorrow. talk about great service. it’s better than walking around the mall looking for the right shoe. they allow you to browse by shoe color. just pick a color and then it shows you all of the shoes that match that criteria. very cool.

degrees of sickness

there are several degrees of sickness for me.

the most severe is when i can’t get out of bed. i’m sleeping through most of the day and i have no appetite. getting up out of bed makes me feel worse and so i just lie in bed all day drifting in and out of consciousness.

the mildest cases of illness are probably when i just feel uncomfortable all day long and want to be in bed instead, but can function and think clearly.

it’s the somewhere inbetween of those two extremes where i’m at right now. i’ve been taking some medication and it’s been helping, but i’m still sick. i sometimes have this bad cough, but it isn’t persistent. i feel a little light headed, but not dizzy. i still have my appetite. and let me tell you how appreciative i am about that.

i have been trying to eat better, but it’s been hard to eat better when sick. usually i end up getting won ton soup. i don’t know why, but i feel that it has some kind of magic restorative powers that will help me feel better. it’s easy on the stomach and tastes delicious.

today, though, when i go home for lunch, i plan to eat some pizza. i got some take home pizza from costco and the plan now is to take it, bake it, and enjoy. we’ll see how that goes.

i’ve been going to sleep really early this week because i haven’t been feeling well. though i’m sleeping a lot, i don’t feel like i’m getting good rest. it kind of sucks. oh well, hopefully, i’ll feel better soon!

what’s a boy to do

when the internet connection at the office is dead, it’s a tough day in the life of a web developer. i mean, how can you develop the web when you can’t get to it? *sigh*

there are sneaky ways to do it, though. my blackberry will let me access the web at excruciatingly slow transfer speeds. and when i say slow, i mean like, it takes 3 minutes to load up yahoo’s main page. we’re talking 2400 baud modem speeds here, folks. and if you don’t know what 2400 baud is, consider yourself lucky.

remember the days when you would only browse one page at a time? you would only have one browser window open at a time and you would have to wait for pages to load? and i mean wait like 30 seconds to a minute wait. yeah, those days. slow..internet…bad.

well, the office internet connection is dead. it has been reported that our upstream provider has a nationwide break in their service. nationwide! and the ETA for service to go back up is over 24 hours!! this isn’t the first time that something like this has happened and it has basically shut down the office.

shut it down.

so the few of us who are still in the office are taking care of administrative things and the like. as soon as i’m done with that, i think that i’m going to go home and bake some cookies. yeah, that sounds like a good idea. i also found out why my cookies turned out so flat the other day, so i’m going to try to see if i can fix the problem in the next batch. i bought 4 boxes of butter from costco and i’m almost done with it. it’s all the baking that i’ve been doing.

life without internet is kind of weird. empty, really. especially for a web developer. anyhow, i’m actually trying to sneak onto the internet through my blackberry, but the connectivity is so slow that it hurts. usually browsing the web is tolerable with it, but i’m only getting about 3kB/s transfers. 3kB. i mean, even slow dial up modems deliver more than that. we’re talking accessing the internet circa 1992 here with 2400 baud modems. props to anyone who remembers those days.

so i’m trying to browse the web, but it just isn’t happening. here, let me open up a web browser, try and surf the web, and see how much i can type in that time.

a long time ago i tried to open a web browser to yahoo. yahoo usually is a pretty fast web page to open, but it turns out that their portal has really become bloatware. really bloated. it’s still loading. i’m serious. i kid you not. i type fast, but not that fast. the yahoo logo hasn’t even loaded yet. oh there it is. almost done. really, i think so. news story image is loading now. there’s still the advertisement image that needs to load. man, i don’t even know what i’m going to do with myself after the page is done loading, i’ll be a few years older, you know? speaking of being a few years older a friend was lamenting to me about how he is getting old. i told him that he shouldn’t really lament because he’s always been older than me. that didn’t seem to bring him much comfort. the page is still loading. i wish i was kidding. let’s see, ok, i think it’s getting close to being done now. yup, it’s done riiiiiiight now. seriously…slow. it’s awful.


ok, it turns out that the internet was only down for about 5 hours. and just as i was wrapping up to leave the office and work from home, it came back up. rats.

sara bareilles and james blunt

i went to the sara bareilles and james blunt concert last night. it’s part of the VH1 you oughta know tour. i have always liked sara bareilles’ hit “love song”, but the rest of her songs are equally good. enough so that christi told me that it was ok if i liked her because she could sing…christi just doesn’t appreciate the sheer goodness of people like regina spektor or dido.

ah, dido. when are you going to put out a new album?

we were running a little late, but we were able to catch most of sara’s performance. it’s a good thing too because sara’s performance was quite good. it’s fun to watch people early in their careers. they are still reveling in how their fortunes have turned and how they made it big. at one point, she exclaimed, “we’re at the warfield! the warfield!”

james blunt put on a good show. this is the first time i saw him in concert and though he is ultra popular with the ladies, i gotta say he’s pretty unattractive. and by that, i really mean, kinda ugly. still, the music was good. most of his songs do sound the same to me, but i still like them anyway. the high point of the concert for me was during the performance of “you’re beautiful”1

still, a fun concert to go to. i don’t know if i have ever been to the warfield before. i thought that i had, but it felt a lot smaller than i remember it being. there was a very mixed crowd at the concert from 10 year girls to people who could have been my grandparents. i didn’t see anyone that i recognized.

  1. Yeah, she caught my eye,
    As we walked on by.
    She could see from my face that I was,
    Fucking high,
    And I don’t think that I’ll see her again,
    But we shared a moment that will last till the end.

    at this point when he got to the lyric fucking high, he walked away from the audience and the audience sang at the top of their lungs the missing lyric. []

new year’s desserts

looks like i forgot to post what desserts were being served at the new year’s party earlier this year. i thought i took pictures of people, but it turns out that i didn’t really. man, i must be getting anti-social if i think that desserts are more important that people…but they were really good desserts.

super tuesday

today is super tuesday. that’s when a bunch of states around the nation open their polls for voting. the primaries are afoot and i went to the voting poll this morning to cast my vote. when i got there, i was surprised at the voting stalls.

they were TINY! and when i got there, there were no electronic ballots. instead i was given a folder and i thought to myself, “oh great, we’re back to punch voting? i’m i going to have a hanging chad?”

it turns out that because of the concerns of reliability in the electronic voting machines (seriously, how could you screw something like this up??), about one third of california’s voters are going back to paper ballots as the electronics machines have been decertified!

imagine my surprise when i saw the ballots and thought to myself how sad it is that, here in silicon valley, you would think that we would have SOME way to do this with modern technology. alas, no.

instead of punch cards, there is a big ballot with BIG writing. there are broken arrows next to the name of each choice and you fill in the broken arrow to make a full arrow to designate your choice. crazy, huh?

but effective. i can’t imagine how you would screw this up.

i was talking to a friend of mine about the indian tribes gambling props and i told him that it’s confusing because there are so many commercials about them to say yes and no. usually, the commercials are back to back. he told me that i should vote yes on two of them and no on the other two. hahaha, what a solution!