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No meat today, my game has gone away… //at 02:38 //by abe

from the noone-wants-backup-everyone-wants-restore dept.

Jick seems to have wrecked the main KoL database and restore doesn’t seem working as expected. So KoL will be down for a while. Which means for me: More time in the evenings. ;-)

Now playing: Hermit Permit -eh- Hermits Herman’s — No Milk Today

The right Religion for me //at 02:34 //by abe

from the psychology-light dept.

While having a look at HE’s blog, I found an online self test called Which religion is the right one for you? (new version) and the result was mostly as expected but some of the results made me wonder a little bit:

You scored as agnosticism. You are an agnostic. Though it is generally taken that agnostics neither believe nor disbelieve in God, it is possible to be a theist or atheist in addition to an agnostic. Agnostics don’t believe it is possible to prove the existence of God (nor lack thereof).

Agnosticism is a philosophy that God’s existence cannot be proven. Some say it is possible to be agnostic and follow a religion; however, one cannot be a devout believer if he or she does not truly believe.


Which religion is the right one for you? (new version)
created with QuizFarm.com.

Agnosticism is indeed, what I think is the only “right” religion, although I believe that there is no god at all, so Atheïsm is also an expected result. Also expected was the low rating for Christianity since I never really understood Christians although probably a lot of my real life is based on some of their principles.

Less expected was the high ranking of Satanism, but Wikipedia helps understanding the result: “Many Satanists do not worship a deity called Satan or any other deity. Unlike many religions and philosophies, Satanism generally focuses upon the spiritual advancement of the self, rather than upon submission to a deity or a set of moral codes.”

Oh, and please always remember: “I believe” means “I do not know” or sometimes even “I do not want to know”. — or in German: Glauben heißt nicht wissen (wollen).

Visited Countries Meme //at 02:34 //by abe

from the map dept.

It’s meme time again on Planet Debian: This is a map with all countries I already visited marked in red.

So I haven’t left Europe yet (except for Tunisia, which is geographically quite close to Europe), but inside Europe I already visited quite a lot of places.

But there are still a lot of countries, I would like to visit once, e.g. the UK (especially Wales and Scotland), Ireland, Iceland, Poland, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. And the islands Sicily, Corsica and Tasmania. The USA I currently do not want to visit, although the Grand Canyon probably would be worth the journey. But unfortunately there is also the list of countries, I want to visit again: Finnland, Norway and Denmark. :-)

Quiz’n’Meme time again: What’s your Perfect Major? //at 02:34 //by abe

from the oh-no-not-yet-another-meme dept.

Although the recent Inner European quiz meme is currently much more popular on Planet Debian, the following quiz somehow shows how the result of such a quiz should look like and what the quiz system, which the Inner European quiz used, misses: Having more than only bit-like answers. With answers like this, neither I would have had to change answers to see how close I was to different answer nor would have Christian Perrier had to do the quiz with worst fitting answers.

You scored as Engineering. You should be an Engineering major!


What is your Perfect Major?
created with QuizFarm.com

Since I always saw computer science more as an engineering discipline than a derivative of mathematics (at least the way I studied and like it ;-), I seem to have taken the right major. But also most of the other highscorers aren’t that unfamiliar:

Well, if you see how much philosophy is behind open source or politics, being engaged in open source software and interested in politics doesn’t seem to be that wrong. ;-)
I like journalism somehow and I sometimes think about if this could have also been (or even be) a nice profession for me, especially since I managed to combine journalism and computer science in being an editor at Symlink.ch, a Swiss based and German written news and discussion site all around Open Source, IT politics and privacy. Sure, it’s no professional journalism and also not classical journalism, since it’s built on the same ideas (and software) as Slashdot.
If I would have more time and leisure, I probably would also try to draw, paint or sculpture more again as I did during my school time. And since my brother and my mother are both active artists I expect that the results wouldn’t be that bad either. ;-) On the other hand, I also like to design CSS styles which IMHO can also satisfy my artistic bone…
Although I see more the engineering than the mathematics in computer science, mathematics still was one of my two majors in school (the other was physics) and in comparison to many other people I can say that I like maths.
That’s the only thing IMHO not fitting in here in such a high position since I’m neither good at foreign languages (see my English in the blog… ;-) nor do I like studying languages. And even if I should see that as “Literature” or “German” (my mother tongue) instead, it just doesn’t seem to fit. (Ok, journalism also has to do with language(s)…)
Biology was the voluntary science course at school I took until I finished school. At university it became my minor subject. I wonder why it’s that deep down in the statistics?
That was my second voluntary science course at school, but I dropped it before I finished school.
Well, no, I don’t think that actor would be good idea for me…
I’m not sure, if sometimes being glad not to understand how my brain works is a good base for diving into psychology. (On the other hand: Would I write so much text about this quiz, if I’m not at least a little bit interested in psychology? ;-)
That’s again more interesting.
If this can include computer linguistics, than it’s definitely something interesting for me, since it usually involves artifical intelligence and I wrote my diploma thesis about an AI subject and our research group did work a lot in the area of computer linguistics.
No. I’m glad it’s that far down there. Just wonder how it got even 42%.
Well, that’s again an interesting subject, but probably not a subject I would work in. So being that far down is completely ok.

So in general, I think the quiz works mostly fine as well as I probably did choose the right subjects for me. *grin* Only thing I missed in this quiz was Physics as a possible result since I don’t think, it’s impossible (especially compared to the rest of the result) that I haven’t scored for anything typical for physicians.

Now Playing: Falco — Mutter, der Mann mit dem Koks ist da!

For those who care about memes, interior design or optical illusions //at 02:33 //by abe

from the running-gag dept.

Sorry, but I just couldn’t resist to at least once use FTWCA. (I guess it will become some kind of meme on Planet Debian and the Debian lists the one or the other way round… (And isn’t “meme” just another name for running gag? ;-)

Via dyfa I found a page with very impressive optical illusions in interior design just resulting from the right perspective. Unfortunately my flat is way to small for such a cool decoration. (These orange holes would fit perfectly regarding the colour. :-)

Gothic Darkness Savings Time //at 02:33 //by abe

from the night-worker dept.

I’m neither into Gothic nor do I hate daylight. And even despite the title of my blog I’m definitely everything else than a pessimist. But I do like the night (e.g. for coding or travelling) and I sometimes hear ,,slightly” dark music like e.g. Skyclad. And so I can grin about Nikolai Lusan’s suggestion to introduce the Gothic Darkness Savings Time (GDST) in his blog Blogging is futile. :-)

Now playing: Bloodhound Gang — Bad Touch

Oh no! Yet another WML //at 02:33 //by abe

from the TLA dept.

As if I have not enough troubles to explain that there is not only the Wireless Markup Language (of the WAP consortium) named WML but also the Website Meta Language, there is now yet another WML: The Wesnoth Markup Language for the game The Battle for Wesnoth, of which version 1.0 was released two days ago. (Via Isaac Clerencia)

Although I usually don”t play games of that type, I’m quite curious about it, maybe because it’s dangerous. ;-)

Trojans must stay out //at 02:32 //by abe

from the self-adjusting dept.

On Heise’s security site HeiSec, Microsoft is advertising (in German) with a Flash animation of a rolling, black horse approaching the reader. Then suddenly a red gate closes and a text apprears:

Trojans must stay out.

If we translate this back to ancient greek history, it would say:

Microsofties must stay out

since Trojans were the inhabitants of Troy (German: Troja) and in the horse were the Greek aggressors. So I strongly agree. ;-)

I really hate it, if people just reverse the meaning of something by abbreviating it (here by turning the adjective into a noun). And then not noticing it. The term Trojan Horse in computing is just one (unfortunately) often seen example…

But no wonder that Microsoft doesn’t care about such things. They care about so less (e.g. stable software, secure operating systems, users, administrators, trust, etc.) except keeping their monopoly, making money and making even more money.

I love and hate Unicode //at 02:30 //by abe

from the love-and-hate dept.

When I first saw Joey’s wish for a Unicode bumper sticker, I just parsed

 I [?] Unicode

as a little bit sarcastic »I ♥ Unicode«, but when nion posted it, too, I noticed, that it may also be read as »I ☠ Unicode«. Maybe, that this — both — is exactly what Joey intended to say, and I have to acknowledge this: I hate Unicode in my mutt since Sarge because it doesn’t work with screen out of the box anymore, and I hate Unicode in my Emacs since Emacs 20 because it screws up everything. But I love Unicode in my irssi and on the web. Strange world. But this virtual bumper sticker expresses that feeling somehow perfectly.

I changed my mind. I want a camera mobile phone. //at 02:29 //by abe

from the considerations dept.

Today I read and wrote about Semapedia, a service respective toolset to encode Wikipedia URLs (and also others) as dot-matrix barcode, print them out on leaflets together with mentioning Wikipedia and the URL. Then any visitor with a modern camera cell phone can take an image of the barcode, decode it with the right software on your phone, which passes the decoded URL directly to the phones webbrowser.

This is the first useful application of camera phones I ever heard about. But I see it as so useful that I may consider buying me a camera cell phone with the next contract renewal, although until now, I focused all my search for a worthy successor to my Nokia 6310i on non-camera phones. (Update: And I’m not alone with the wish for a useful mobile phone.)

The 6310i had nearly everything I needed: A big memory, long standby times (1.5 to 2 weeks), WAP incl. WAP browser for reading Symlink on the road, GPRS, GSM 900/1800, T9, Infrared, gnokii support, the same battery bay than my former mobile phones (Nokia 6210 and 6130) and the Nokia typical, very intuïtive and blindly usable user interface. (Siemens mobiles suck!). It also had some things, I didn’t need yet, but sounded useful: Voice dialing and voice recording, Java for playing with own programs, Bluetooth for a cableless headset or so and GSM-1900 because perhaps also other countries than the USA use that frequency band. (I refuse to travel to the USA, so I won’t need the GSM-1900 there.)

It had nothing I didn’t want to have in a mobile phone: Camera, radio, MP3 player, standby time munching color display, e-mail client, MMS, MP3 ring tones or flip covers. The only thing I missed, was a more modern Java VM and even more memory when Opera Mini came out and maybe polyphone ring tones, so I could have the Monkey Island theme as ring tone. ;-)

So what now? Being able to use Opera Mini and Semapedia means to have a mobile phone with camera and — and that’s the drawback — a color display. Anyone knows a Nokia camera phone on which Opera Mini runs but without color display? And with the battery bay from the 6x10 series? No?

Or maybe I should just stay with the 6310i and get me a second one in better condition (no broken case) from eBay or so? There were also (yet unconfirmed) rumours that my GSM provider E-Plus will have the Linux based internet tablet Nokia 770 for a contract renewal plus 80€ to 90€… Difficult decision…

Shell Efficiency Talk at DaLUG today //at 02:29 //by abe

from the testbed dept.

I just uploaded the slides for my shell efficiency talk at the Darmstadt Linux User Group (DaLUG) today at 18:30 CEST at the Technical University of Darmstadt. (The talk will be held in German.)

I will also hold a workshop about the same subject on the 29th of October 2005 at Linux-Info-Tag Dresden. (Will also be held in German.)

Probably moving from tcsh to zsh. Bash sucks. //at 02:29 //by abe

from the habits dept.

The grml-T-Shirt, Alfie was wearing at the Debian QA Meeting in Darmstadt this weekend reminded me, that I wanted to download a grml-ISO. While looking for the ISO I found a link to the grml zsh Reference Card. Beneath the links to the reference card there were a pointer to zsh-lovers, “a small project which tries to collect tips, tricks and examples for the Z shell.”.

There were a lot of nice tricks mentioned, e.g. redirection to multiple files. So I spawned a zsh and checked for the main feature, which keeps me using tcsh instead of bash: History Tab Completion. And see there: zsh does History Tab Completion. And even nicer: Completion results don’t create a new prompt, but just show up (and vanish again with e.g. ^C) beneath the prompt while the prompt only moves (up) if there’s not enough space for all the possible completions. Some kind of meta-cool is the set of configuration variables starting with CSH_JUNKIE_. Guess, I am such a (t)csh junkie. ;-)

And global aliases seem also a very fine (but also very dangerous) feature. Think of cd ... just doing what you want it to, namely cd ../... As well as the advanced history handling which includes incremental sharing with multiple simultaneous shells. Or the spelling corrections based on keyboard layout.

On the other hand, zsh offers everything from bash I missed in tcsh: ^R and usable loops (mostly while (true); do ...) on the command line. The only thing none of the three shells can is Mind Tab Completion. ;-)

The zsh page from Adam Spiers seems to be good source for informations about the zsh. Another nice collection of zsh tips (which often also work in other shells) was in the links section of the grml zsh page.

Funnily several people tried to convince me to use zsh before, but they just didn’t use the right arguments. :-) So it looks as if I found the right arguments by myself and should really give zsh a try after 10 years of tcsh. Although I already found something less amusing in zsh: echo '\n' and echo "\t" behave both very strange, but I still hope, I find the switch to turn it off…

But my upcoming shell efficiency talk will definitely not only feature bash and tcsh but also zsh.

Now playing: R.E.M. — Losing my religion

Berlinux and Linux-Info-Tag Dresden //at 02:28 //by abe

from the near-east dept.

Like alphascorpii, I’ll be at Berlinux in Berlin next weekend as well as at Linux-Info-Tag in Dresden the following weekend.

At both events I’ll present the Website Meta Language (WML) in a talk (similar to the WML talk I held at Oscomtag 2005, only more detailed) and in Dresden I’ll also hold a workshop about understanding and efficiently using command line shells (based on the Shell Efficiency talk at DaLUG last month). It will be focused a little bit more on shell beginners and intermediate users than on shell cracks. At Linux-Info-Tag they should better have a look at Sven Guckes’ zsh workshop.

After Dresden, I’ll be on holiday for a week.

Next planned shell efficiency talks //at 02:28 //by abe

from the calendar dept.

Today is the deadline for proposing talks for this year’s LinuxTag (3rd to 6th of May, Wiesbaden, Germany) and last week was the deadline for talk proposals for this year’s Chemnitzer Linux-Tage (CLT, 4th and 5th of March 2006, Chemnitz, Germany). For both events I submitted my already at other events held Shell Efficiency talk. For LinuxTag I marked the proposal as “German preferred, English possible”, so if they ask for the English version, I’ll offer the slides in English, too, of course. I’ll probably also build a DocBook version of the talk, since LinuxTag prefers the DocBook format.

But even if these both talk proposals are not accepted, I’ll be on both events together with the rest of the Symlink crew and have fun! ;-)

Additionally I will hold the talk a few days before CLT on Thursday the 2nd of March 2006 at the New Thinking Store in Berlin-Mitte, Tucholskystraße 48 at 19:30 (which is unfortunately in parallel to this year’s German Perl Workshop from 1st to 3rd of March 2006 in Bochum). The entrance to the talk is free. (Thanks to Sven Guckes for suggesting this talk and bringing me in contact with New Thinking.)

Now Playing: Jethro Tull — Orion

Back from Berlinux 2005 //at 02:27 //by abe

from the home-sweet-home dept.

I was at Berlinux 2005 this weekend and though the very chaotic — because understaffed — organisation it was interesting and also funny.

Thursday I arrived around 20:15 in Berlin, met Klaus Knopper and others at the train station, headed to Sven Guckes’ appartment for dropping all my luggage, then going back to meet with Klaus and the others for a theremin concert with Dorit Chrysler. No wonder that it sounded sometimes like one of my favourite musicians, Jean Michel Jarre, since — according to the Wikipedia theremin article — he also plays this instrument.

On Friday I held my talk about WML in front of a — for that topic — surprisingly high number of auditors (around 30, maybe 35). In comparision to my WML talk at OscomTag 2005 all people who asked questions had understood about what the talk was, so the questions were most time interesting and justified. As usual I held the talk using Lynx with LSS support (picture by Sven Guckes) on my nine year old Pentium 1 ThinkPad bijou running Debian GNU/Linux 3.0 aka Woody.

Before and after the talk I helped out at Werner Heuser’s xtops booth (another picture by Sven) and the booth of the Debian Project (yet another picture by Sven :-) directly beside Frank Ronneburg’s Debian powered model railway. (picture by you-know-who ;-) In the evening I was at the social event, hanging around with alphascorpii, Tolimar and Joey and being surprised that Joey studies biology — as I did as minor to computer science.

On Saturday I was on alphascorpii’s talk about why being a BOFH is not funny, hung around at the same booths as the day before, fixed the X configuration on my laptop after hints on a unknown Debian booth visitor. Before the exhibition closed I heard a very interesting talk about web accessibility held by Sebastian who is blind himself. Although or maybe because I’m interested in that subject, the talk opened my eyes regarding two things: First »Captchas are evil« and »Blind HTML tables aren’t as evil as all the priests of web accessibility are always preaching«. They are easier than frames for blinds and seem to have only little disadvantages against a CSS based layout for blinds nowadays if used the right way. Oh, and btw. — nested tables are still evil. :-)

Saturday evening I had dinner together with Stefan Gerdelbracht, Frank Hofmann, Klaus Knopper and Manfred Krejcik. Later Thomas Winde joined us. It was very interesting evening, especially talking with Klaus and Manfred.

On Sunday, after having brunch with Stefan and Manfred, we met with Sven (who was our host at Berlin, thanks again!) and shortly after that, Stefan left for visiting some other friends in Berlin. Sven, Manfred and I visited C-Base where Sven stumbled over a sound editing seminar while Manfred was preparing his zipFM show for Monday which mainly consisted of an interview with Klaus. After that we headed to a small but fine birthday party of a friend of Sven and were back home around 2:30.

My train left Monday morning at 8:56 and I was at home around 14:30. And on Friday I’ll go to Dresden for the Linux-Info-Tag by train just to go back to Berlin afterwards, where I meet my parents for a two week baltic sea holiday in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania near Rügen. But due to the Systems fair at Munich and autumn holidays I have to stay at work this week.

And yes, I wrote this and the other postings posted today offline, so they’re dated quite close together. :-)

Orpheus on Woody //at 02:26 //by abe

from the low-resource dept.

Nobse’s blog posting about his ITP the text mode menu- and window-driven front-end to mpg123, mpg321 and ogg123 orpheus made me curious since I was also unsatisfied with the audio players I used so far and mostly ended up in using mpg123 -Z *.mp3, because it works fine and is not as resource-hungry as XMMS. And for CDs I usually used a self-written perl wrapper around the command line tools of cdtools (mostly cdir and cdplay).

I first installed orpheus from sources on my SuSE box at work today while waiting for a windows box to upgrade to some service pack. At home I took nobse’s debian packages sources and recompiled the package on my Woody running desktop. After installing the required build dependecy dpatch from backports.org, the package compiled through without any problems and I now have a very useful and slim text mode audio player.

orpheus and aumix in transparent aterms

And orpheus and aumix look fine together inside transparent aterms.

Now playing in orpheus of course: Jean Michel Jarre — Je Me Souviens

Linuxland is slow //at 02:26 //by abe

from the not-only-debian-has-slow-release-cycles dept.

Linuxland is slow. I just got a newsletter e-mail from them with subject Debian 3.1 r1 ist da!” (engl.: Debian 3.1 r1 is here!”) announcing the availability of 3.1.r1 in their shop. My first thought was: “Oh, I thought it would take a few days more.” Then I noticed that they talk about 3.1r1 which was released on 18th of December last year and not the upcoming and already announced 3.1r2 which should be released at the end of February or at the beginning of March.

Supporting Free Software via vendors //at 02:25 //by abe

from the cash-flow dept.

Steve wrote in his blog:

I’ve seen this argument before “Buy distribution of GNU/Linux and support free software programmers”. The only problem I have with it is that it is incorrect. Buying GNU/Linux distributions helps the vendors who created it, certainly, and may indirectly help pay for some free software in the sense that the vendors might ship free software they wrote (e.g. SuSEs Yast{2]). However plonking down real cash-money for a boxed set of SuSE gives no money to the people who created MySQL, no money to the people who created Firefox, no money to the people who created Emacs, Vim, Bash, and Catan/Pioneers, etc.

I think, in general you’re right. And if you — as you did :-) — take SuSE, it usually works. And you’re probably also right for most people who just know the big, commercial distributions. But what if you take a free distribution like Debian or some of the BSDs, e.g. OpenBSD? How much truth is in there then?

Especially in the case of OpenBSD your view doesn’t seem work, because if you buy an (official) OpenBSD box, you pay the developers — or at least a few of them — of the operating system core and some mission-critical applications.

But what if you take community based distributions like Debian? You distinguished between distributor and authors of free software. In my eyes especially Debian, but also some other community based distributions are both at same time. So IMHO you can put them on the author side of your view.

And since many Debian vendors (at least those I saw) donate a part of the profit they make from selling Debian CDs or DVD to the Debian Project. Or they offer additional shopping cart items “Donation to Debian” if you order a Debian item. (Example: LinISO.de)

Another question in this context would be, how the FOSS world would look like if there are or were no commercial distributors. It probably would be much smaller because some marketing and some lobbying would be missing. Although that’s the only implication which comes to my mind, I’m sure, there are many more possible views on this subject.

But as I said, IMHO you’re right for most cases.

Debian QA Meeting in Darmstadt //at 02:24 //by abe

from the quark-assurance dept.

After having a nice DVD evening on Friday with a friend (X-Men 2 and Dogma) in Darmstadt, I attended the Debian QA Meeting in Darmstadt for the rest of the weekend. Although I not really that deep in QA, there were interesting talks, discussions and people. Looking though the list of the oldest Debian packages with RC bugs, I even found a package (elvis-tiny, which I have installed on some boxes) with an RC bug and some more bugs I could fix during the QA meeting.

Debian’s newest developer and AM, Myon, NMU’ed the package for me and so elvis-tiny 1.4-18.1 is the first package I build to enter Debian. The package was btw initially built on my Unstable box at home, which is an about 10 years old Pentium 1 with 133 MHz and 64 MB of RAM called m35. I was working there via ssh and screen using my ThinkPad bijou — which is also an Pentium 1 with 133 MHz and therefore in the same performance class as m35.

Later in the afternoon, djpig filed another RC bug against that package because the above mentioned list of old RC bugs hasn’t been updated yet, so this package probably won’t get into testing that fast. On the other hand: The package is really old and seems unmaintained, because the three bugs weren’t that hard to fix. So it’s probably not so bad that this bug report was filed. And as HE wrote in his blog today, it probably saved him work, because he planned to find all such packages and file the appropriate bugs against them…

While doing some keysigning with the people who were sitting beside me (Amaya and h01ger) I also learned how to use caff and directly found a bug and filed it, while Myon just had uploaded a new version shortly before. But late in the night, he seemed to upload the next version where the bug is already fixed… And thanks to Emme installed the missing dependency for using gnupg-agent on the console (pinentry-curses) on Saturday, I’ve now no more excuses for not yet having signed all the keys from the Key Signing Party at Linuxtag in Karlsruhe.

When most of the meeting was over, I drove Ganneff and HE to the train station and — although they seemed skeptical regarding the idea of being driven in a 2CV — they had obviously fun with it and asked a lot of questions while mostly being amused or surprised by my answers. (Yet another reason to drive a 2CV… ;-)

Can the spam problem be solved? //at 02:23 //by abe

from the never-say-never-again dept.

Many have tried to solve spam problem, even Micrsoft (with a quite strange solution ;-), but except personal solutions like well working and well-kept spam filters, no well-working general technical solution has been found yet.

Although I really would like to see a technical solution and often think about this problem, I currently believe that this primarily is a social problem which cannot be solved solely with technic. UserFriendly’s Erwin seems to see it the same way and proposed today a quite drastical solution.

There are good ideas out there (e.g. SPF, RBL, Greylisting and Teergrubing), but all seem to have their problems, too. Especially RBL often have administrative problems, i.e. if an entry is justified or not. Greylisting simply can be bypassed by being SMTP conform and trying again, so it’s usefulness will decrease permanently. And against Lutz Donnerhacke’s teergrubing, spammers seem to have found workarounds quite quickly. Haven’t heard much about it in the last years. (I just can’t remember what the drawback of SPF was.)

For myself I’ve solved the spam problem with a learning SpamAssassin and sorting mail by spam-level into several mailboxes. The higher the spam-level of such an inbox, the more seldom I look into it. Works fine. For me. No general solution though, since the SpamAssassin needs to be fed with fresh spam regularly.

Cheap blue pills //at 02:22 //by abe

from the I-should-have-taken-the-blue-pill dept.

I just got an obvious spam e-mail with subject “cheap blue pills” and it took me quite a moment to realise that they don’t want me to buy pills which let me keep everyone I love and everything that I have built my life upon. What a pity. But why don’t they sell also red pills? ;-)

Blosxom plugin tagging released //at 02:22 //by abe

from the if-it-doesn't-exist-you-have-to-write-it-yourself dept.

I like the idea of categorising blog posts and I like blosxom, but even with multcat adding a post to multiple categories is somehow limited. In other blogs I often saw the technic of tagging articles with a keyword. I wanted that feature, too, but there weren’t any appropriate plugin for blosxom. Until now, because again, I just wrote it by my own…

So here is the blosxom plugin tagging, version 0.01. License is GPL v2 or higher.

tagging expects one or more “header” lines starting with “Tags: ” and being located directly under the first line, which always is the title. Those lines you can fill with comma seperated keywords (seperation by blanks possible via config) and shows them with appropriate links in $tagging::tag_list for the story template and $tagging::global_tag_list with all used keywords for the head or foot template.

Filtering is done using the -tags parameter in the query string. It uses the same delimiter as configured for the Tag header lines inside the posts.

Image based captchas are evil //at 02:20 //by abe

from the accessibility dept.

I always found Captchas annoying. But since I also had or have problems with guestbook or comment spamming, I understood that people and especially companies saw no other choice against comment or wiki spamming, mass account grabbing, etc. But since most captcha are based on the fact that people can still read deformed or garbled texts in images while machines can’t or at least only with a big effort, there is one big drawback with them: They are even more an insuperable obstacle for blinds or visually handicapped people than for machines.

The blind computer science student Sebastian Andres showed at Berlinux how blinds navigate and use the web and where they (must) stop. So because of GMail uses visual captchas as a defense against mass account grabbing, he couldn’t get such a “free” e-mail account. (And yes there exist non-visual captchas. But they’re seldom used.) Thanks Sebastian for this insight.

Uncyclopedia: Misinformation rules //at 02:20 //by abe

from the nonsens-united dept.

Uncyclopedia is an encyclopedia full of misinformation and utter lies. It’s sort of like Congress or Parliament (or Funkadelic). Unlike Congress or Parliament (but not Funkadelic), however, we do have a sense of humor.”

Sounds a little bit like the German written Kamelopedia which has any information about camels, even that information, that doesn’t exist.

Now playing: J.B.O. — Verteidiger des wahren Blödsinns

Implemented a blacklist for blog comment spam //at 02:12 //by abe

from the the-last-straw dept.

Just killed all the remaining comment spams (I hope) and implemented a simple regexp based blacklist which should get most medicaments, potence pills, casinos, lotteries and other frequently posted junk. I hope, it does not hit too many valid posts. If you have problems posting comments, feel free to contact me by e-mail or on IRC.

In other news, I installed the blosxom plugin comments_recent and adapted the mail feature of writeback notify to my (in the meantime heavily modified) instance of the comments plugin v0.6. I also made it symlink-safe for use with multcat.

Blacklisting comment spam in blosxom //at 02:12 //by abe

from the it-seems-to-work-so-it-has-to-be-released dept.

Since the demand for blosxom anti-comment-spam solutions respective appropriate blosxom plugins seems to be really high, I’ve decided to polish up my apparently quite well working although still in beta state being anti-spam enhanced version of the comments plugin (ZIP) by putting the blacklist outside in an external file and writing some (still short) docs.

I use it since 11th of January this year and got only two spam comments and many more normal comments since then, so it should work. Although: I also got a question if my trackback doesn’t work. Hmmm. So no warranties, just an offer for help fighting against comment spam. ;-)

Another feature which is basically ported from the writeback notify plugin is notification of the blog owner about new comments by mail. Since on the server on which my blog runs the used Perl module Mail::Sendmail was not available, I used Mail::Send instead for my version.

For installation you first need to download the ZIP file of the original comments plugin, install it’s templates and then install my anti-spam enhanced version of the plugin itself.

Now playing: Rockapella — Come on Eileen

Blosxom like alternatives to Blosxom //at 02:10 //by abe

from the write-once-read-never dept.

I really like the simplicity of Blosxom as blogging framework and I also like Perl very much. But somehow this Perl 4 alike global variables madness of Blosxom v2 sucks in several ways: It effectively prevents Blosxom from being used with mod_perl and it’s just not what I would call an API. I would like to have a more object-oriented plugin API and it should be save for use with FastCGI, mod_perl or similar possibilities to cache the parsed script code instead of reparsing with each request. Another thing should be a tagging facility. Had to write that by myself for Blosxom v2. (Wasn’t that hard though.) But since Blosxom v3 development seemed to have stopped in May 2004, I have been thinking about and looking for alternatives.

First thought was to write a Blosxom clone by myself using Embperl as framework (as I did with web galleries after not finding any web gallery software fitting all my needs).

But since I got infected with Ruby recently, I also thought about writting a Blosxom clone in Ruby, which would give me quite a lot of Ruby experience and would make a good fit since Ruby as well as Blosxom have some kind of Zen (or KISS) philosophy. The next thought was: I can’t be the first to come up with that idea and googled a little bit.

First thing I digged up was Rage, some kind of Blosxom on Rails. But I didn’t find any source code although the author seems to prefer open source software. Seems as if it is seems to be ready for production but not ready for public release.

The next thing I found was hint to some Blosxom clones in the Ruby Application Archive (RAA). Unfortunately two of them (sakura and lily) seem to have Japanese only web pages. :-(

But for luck the third Ruby based Blosxom clone found in the RAA, Blosxonomy, seems to be quite well featured, under actual development, has a english written web page and one of if its main concepts is taggability. And also the other core concepts sound fine: simplicity, extensibility and compatibility. Sounds really perfect and I’ll probably give it a try, but not on my current blog host: There is no Ruby installed and it’s not my own box.

Now playing: Rolling Stones — Ruby Tuesday

Some new plugins, XFN, Technorati and yigg.de //at 02:09 //by abe

from the web-2.0 dept.

After blathijs and I today talked a little bit about blosxom plugins on the #blosxom IRC channel, I installed the listplugins plugin. Since I’m a perfectionist in some things, I had to configure it to link every plugin I use to it’s web page or source.

While going through my plugin list, I noticed that there were three additional plugins I wrote myself and of which I thought I should share:

  • acronyms works similar to and is losely based on Fletcher Penney’s autolinks but instead of setting links it marks configurable keywords as abbreviation or acronym and show their expansion when hovering over the keyword (all using standard XHTML).
  • xml_ping_generic is based on xml_ping_weblogs and can ping an arbitrary number of URLs to be pinged with the weblog.com’s XML RPC ping API. By default it pings weblogs.com and technorati.com.
  • date_rfc822 is nothing else than the 822-date command (which returns a date in RFC 822 conform format and is written in Perl, too) wrapped into a blosxom plugin. Work similar to date_fullname. I use it for including <pubDate> tags in the RDF.

All plugins are published under the same open source license, they initially came with.

In other news…
I started using XFN, the XHTML Friends Network, at least the blogroll, and created accounts at Technorati and at yigg.de, a German Digg.com clone formerly respective yet still known as digg.de

Now playing: Battle Without Honor or Humanity — Hotei Tomayasu (from the Kill Bill Soundtrack)

A new toy //at 02:09 //by abe

from the First-Post! dept.

I once decided not to have a blog, because I feared, the time I will spent blogging would vanishing from my Symlink time. But due to Symlink not being a real blog but rather a news and discussion website with a journalistic attitude and limited subjects, there are topics missing I would like to write about.

And due to not wanting to spam my beloved IRC channels with all those uninteresting subjects, a blog seemed to be the right place: Nobody needs to read it, but anyone can read it. And since Blosxom (which I first noticed at zobel’s and at alphascorpii’s blog) is fully the way I would design a blog (technically), I installed it today, tweaked a little bit the httpd.conf of our Apache and there it is: My never wanted but inescapably closer coming weblog named Blogging is futile.

And it will probably be mixed, German and English.

Blosxom Plugin Tagging Version 0.03: Featuring related stories //at 02:08 //by abe

from the relationship dept.

Wim de Jonge, an (as he writes) happy user of my blosxom plugin “tagging” asked, if the tags used in the plugin couldn’t be used to find related stories by looking for stories which share a number of tags with the current story.

Version 0.03 of tagging is the result of his suggestion. You can see in my blog how it looks like.

He also found a division by zero bug in the plugin which happend if there were only a few posts in a blog and therefore all tags only occurred once. This bug should be fixed now, too.

Now playing: Toto — Africa

Update 14:50h: Released version 0.03.1 as a bugfix releases since there was a slash missing in the related story links and some minor issues. Thanks again Wim for pointing out the error.

Wikipedia at your fingertips //at 02:07 //by abe

from the shell-script dept.

Via nion’s blog I got notice of two other blog entries of two people of whom each wrote a shell script to display Wikipedia articles as plain text in a pager.

While the first one called wiki2 queries Google and fetches then the first Wikipedia hit there, the second one (funnily just called wiki) queries Wikipedia directly, supports different Wikipedia languages and has a lot of other nice features.

Since the idea and especially the second script definitely belongs to the group of programs you never thought about, but, when you found it, you knew, you missed it until now, I decided to use it as the first program, I want to package for the Debian project to be included in the next release which will be called Etch.

Because of “wiki” being a quite ambigous name, I plan to name the package wikipedia2text.

Galeon, GNOME and all the rest //at 02:07 //by abe

from the never-ending-story dept.

I feel that I still owe a few answers on the recent Galeon discussion on Planet Debian and apparently also other planets, so here they are… (But I try to keep them short. :-)

First, Erich’s question Why are not-gnome users complaining about Gnome? — Because some people do not use GNOME but do use GNOME applications like Galeon. They don’t use them because GNOME is cool, useful, user-friendly or what else — they use them because these applications are cool, useful, user-friendly or so. They would also use them if they were plain GTK or maybe even KDE applications. For example, I also use Gnumeric or AbiWord, because I like them and not because I like GNOME. (Which — in general — I do btw.) I also use KDE applications although I don’t like KDE in general. (I don’t like KDE for much more emotional reasons compared to Galeon 1.3 btw., so I won’t rant about that. ;-) ark is a nice example for a KDE application I like. Unfortunately some distributions seem to have dropped it. At least I missed it recently on some box.

Then there was Gunnar Wolf’s question if it wasn’t Galeon 1.2 which went off the path. He maybe right, since I’ve never seen a Galeon version before 1.2 and the fact that the former Galeon lead developer dropped Galeon for the very spartanic Epiphany also suggests that. But since Galeon 1.2 took the right path in my eyes, Galeon 1.3 seemed at least to change (back) again to some wrong path from that point of view. We’ll see if Kazehakase really keeps following the “right” path.

JFTR: Interesting to read were also the discussion between Og, Erich and some more in Og’s journal as well as Wouter’s postings on the subject.

Oh, and in general: Thanks for the really nice discussion. Rants seem always to get more constructive responses than just asking for them. That’s one reason why I like to rant. ;-) Another reason is that it frees your mind if you know that people have read about what bothers or annoys you. So also thanks to all who followed the discussion (or still are following it if it hasn’t ended yet ;-).

Now playing: Roxette — The Look

Galeon is dead //at 02:07 //by abe

from the the-end-of-the-story dept.

According to an announcement of the Galeon developers on their website and the Galeon announcement mailing list, Galeon is more or less dead. It has been superseeded by the more actively developed Epiphany and most of the Galeon (1.3 to be correctly) features which are not already in Epiphany (can’t be that many *harhar*) will be either implemented as Epiphany plugin or — if impossible as plugin, like e.g. middle click in menus or similar things — shall be ported to Epiphany. The Galeon developer team will focus their work on the Epiphany plugins, but still plans to once release Galeon 2.0. (Somehow I always thought, Galeon 1.3 is what meant to be Galeon 2.0.) Having read this, I’m even more convinced that Kazehakase will fill the gap Galeon 1.2 has left behind.

Oh, and btw Erich: plugins or extensions are the only thing I sometimes missed in Galeon, as well in 1.2 as in 1.3. :-) But having no turing-complete extension language is the drawback you have, if you want a fast and stable browser…

Breathetastic™ Premium Canned Air //at 02:06 //by abe

from the anagram dept.

One thing I love the Kingdom of Loathing for are the countless allusions to movies and songtexts. Today I found something, which can’t be anything else than an allusion to one of my favourite movies:

Screenshot of the Breathetastic™ Premium Canned Air item window

When I only read the name of the item I was immediately reminded to a scene from Mel BrooksSpaceballs (IMDb entry, Wikipedia entry) when President Skroob drinks -eh- breaths a can of Perry Air. (Which itself is an allusion to “Perrier”. But I only found German written references to “Perry Air”, so it may be that the original version didn’t have this allusion, since the script directly refers to “Perrier Salt-Free Air”.)

BTW: Nice typo in the English Wikiquote article about Spaceballs: “Dark Helmut” instead of “Dark Helmet”. :-)

Now Playing: Alphaville — Forever Young

eBay with meat //at 02:03 //by abe

from the meationaire dept.

Stumbled over KoLBay at koltrade.com today when shopping at some store (forgot which) in the KoL mall. It just seems like eBay (only even more colorful ;-), but you bid with your KoL meat instead of money. Sounds funny somehow although I don’t know what I should think of those auctions outside the game. There are also KoL items or even whole KoL accounts offered at the real eBay sometimes.

Now playing: Newsboys — In The Belly Of The Whale (Veggie Tales, Jonah Soundtrack)

Pisg User Manager released with pisg 0.67 //at 02:01 //by abe

from the initial-release dept.

With the release of pisg 0.67 this Thursday also the Pisg User Manager (PUM) I started has been released and become part of the pisg distribution. (See also Credits and Changelog.)

The days of addalias are counted — pum is coming //at 02:01 //by abe

from the rewrite-from-scratch dept.

Although it’s quite a while ago that I wrote version 3.0 (the initial version) of pum — the pisg user manager — and that it’s even longer ago that Myon and I decided that the current pisg user editing -ehm- web frontend called addalias needs to be rewritten from scratch or replaced, only now pum seems to get ready for the pisg community:

Myon asked me yesterday, if I could send him and Azoff a copy. So I did. When I today asked for feedback, Myon pointed me to Azoff’s WebCVS and I was quite surprised (positively) that someone continued my work on pum, added new pisg features and raised the version number to 3.1.

So today Azoff and me worked further on pum, me mostly fixing some of my own old bugs and typos. I’m sure, we’ll have a publishable version quite soon. So the days of addalias are counted…

ii: irc improved — or just ircii without “irc”? //at 02:01 //by abe

from the internet-relay-quack dept.

On #debian.de nion pointed me to a new, ingeniously sick project of him: ii or irc improved, an IRC client with a radically new concept: Input is a FIFO, output is directly into the logfiles organised in a irc/$SERVERNAME/$CHANNELNAME directory hierachy. You just irc by reading the logs and piping to some FIFO.

He immediately took my only half serious comment that he could use loco for nick highlighting.

Looking further through his blog, I mentioned, he was experimenting with IRC clients not only since ii. He was trying WeeChat instead of irssi.

OpenLDAP sucks! //at 01:58 //by abe

from the lacks-documentation-and-performance dept.

Not only that in an access_ctrl of OpenLDAP up to version 2.1 access to dn=bla really means access to dn.regex=bla and therefore matches also all children of an LDAP entry (for luck they fixed this in 2.2), but already being in rage the following nearly made me bite into the edge of my desk:

/etc/openldap/access_ctrl: line 7: unknown dn style "exact" in to clause

<access clause> ::= access to <what> [ by <who> <access> [ <control> ] ]+ 
<what> ::= * | [dn[.<dnstyle>]=<regex>] [filter=<ldapfilter>] [attrs=<attrlist>]
<dnstyle> ::= regex | base | exact (alias of base) | one | subtree | children

Also the man page mentions exact as DN style:

For all other qualifiers, the pattern is a  string  repre­
sentation  of  the entry's DN.  base or exact (an alias of
base) indicates the entry whose DN is equal  to  the  pat­

Yet another day I could throw OpenLDAP into the trash can!

The Galeon 1.3.x Rant, Part 2: Kazehakase is the real succssor of Galeon 1.2.x //at 01:57 //by abe

from the the-easiest-way-to-get-a-problem-solved-is-to-rant-about-it-in-public dept.

Well, I’m somehow suprised that my Galeon 1.3.x rant got so much response and especially so many constructive, non-ranty responses. Thanks, guys, you made my day!

A few of my arguments against Galeon 1.3.x are solved now (which of course was one of the targets of the rant ;-)… On the other hand, some of my statements were claimed false, but I still believe them to be right. I just strongly disagree with pure simplification being the right way in UI design.

But more important, I now know that Galeon 1.3.x will never be like Galeon 1.2.x and that it’s no legitimate successor of Galeon 1.2.x, because the focus and the design principles changed to more focus on beginners who may be confused by too many options and features and therefore excludes people which — for working efficently — need a tool being highly configurable regarding their customs.

I also never saw Galeon as part of GNOME, but as a very useful browser which unfortunately has this GNOME stuff in, but still is faster and more useable than Mozilla or Firefox with their XUL rendered GUI. So I used it and used parts of GNOME with it. I always wished SkipStone would have been as powerful as Galeon. But already the first comment to my Galeon 1.3.x rant pointed me to the true Galeon 1.2.x successor — without GNOME and just with pure GTK: Kazehakase. Thanks Miroslav Kure!

Galeon and GNOME developers should take a leaf out of Kazehakase’s book: They claim to be user-friendly by castrating the configuration window without any pointer in the program (help doesn’t count here!) to more options via the gconf-editor or about:config and therefore castrating their old users which are just used to have the power to modify the behaviour of an application.

Kazehakase just does what both, beginners as well as experienced users want and e.g. Lynx also does since ages: Letting the user (and not the developer) choose the user’s level. On the first tab of the Kazehakase configuration window, you can choose between UI levels “Beginner”, “Medium”, “Expert”. The default was “Beginner”, I’ve chosen “Expert” and I’m happy with it. GNOME developers may choose “Beginners” — for their clientele which I no more belong to.

But that’s not enough. Tommi Komulainen pointed me to about:config for the details. That’s fine. But Galeon doesn’t. Which isn’t fine. Kazehakase does. It has a menu entry “Detailed preferences” which just opens a new tab with about:config. IMHO a very elegant if not perfect solution. I really hope that at least this will be copied by the Galeon developers. So, Tommi, please tell the Galeon Developers on the GNOME Developer’s Summit in Boston next weekend, that I wish just two more menu entries beyond “Preferences”:

  • “Detailed browser preferences” which opens a new tab with about:config and
  • “Detailed UI preferences” which opens gconf-editor /apps/galeon.

With this, you probably help a lot of disappointed Galeon 1.3.x users. (And I know for sure that I’m not the only one. /me winks at Myon.)

OK, enough ranty sentences. If you want a more detailed and less ranty discussion, read on…

Read more…

Why Galeon 1.3.x and GNOME 2.x still suck and I stay with Woody on the desktop //at 01:56 //by abe

from the rant dept.

Many of my friends and probably also many people from the #debian.de channel know that I stick with Woody on my desktop because I hate GNOME 2.x and especially Galeon 1.3.x which is a complete rewrite of Galeon 1.2.x from GNOME 1.x, but with many features missing. I often get asked for the “why”, so here are the reasons, why I won’t switch to GNOME 2.x and Galeon 1.3.x…

Thanks to gconf-editor, I could enable some more features in Galeon 1.3.x, which cannot be changed using the configuration interface of Galeon 1.3.x or the GNOME 2.x Control Center (but could be changed in Galeon 1.2.x or the GNOME 1.x Control Center, which counts already as big minus for Galeon 1.3.x and GNOME 2.x). The main thing belonging here is the position of the tabs and detachable menus. I prefer the tabs on the bottom and menus being detachable. (Another thing, which sucks in Firefox but works in Opera, too.)

Another set of configuration items are only available via about:config, e.g. the deactivation of “type-ahead find”. (Although I think, that “type-ahead find” is a good idea and feature, it also sucks in Galeon 1.3.x because of some focus bugs removing focus from input fields when a meta-refresh starts in another tab. After the focus is removed, further typing triggers “type-ahead find”.)

Other features I missed in earlier version seem to be implemented in Sarge’s version of Galeon 1.3.x, e.g. automatically focus the address input field after hitting Ctrl-T, Ctrl-N or the equivalent buttons. Similar, many of the “use middle button or Ctrl to open in new window/tab” features on buttons are now available in nearly all necessary places (address field, smart bookmarks, back button, up button, new button, etc.)

But there is still a lot missing, so here’s the big list on why Galeon 1.3.x still sucks and therefore my desktop will not be upgraded to Sarge until I managed to get Galeon 1.2.x running under it, or Etch is released with a Galeon 1.3.x which has all the features I’m missing since 1.2.x:

  • The state of tabs isn’t shown in the list of all tabs. In Galeon 1.2.x tabs still loading were marked red, already loaded, but not since then visited tabs are marked blue. In Galeon 1.3.x only the tabs itself but not the list entries in the menu are marked that way. (What I also dislike, is that you can’t get the list of all tabs anymore by right clicking any of the tabs. That way you can change tabs much faster then first selecting the “Tabs” menu from the menu bar.)
  • Scrolling through the list of tabs using the arrows beside the tabs bar switches instantly to the next selected tab instead of just scrolling through the tab bar, which makes scrolling endless slow and urges you to use the list of all tabs to change to another currently not shown tab, but as mentioned above, this list isn’t accessible anymore by right clicking any of the tab. *grmpf*
  • There is no more “Related Links” button or equivalent feature to access any relationship information about the currently visited page.
  • Editing key-bindings was as easy as just pressing the wanted key-binding for a menu entry when hovering with the mouse over it in GNOME 1.x. Haven’t found out yet, how to change or add key-bindings in Galeon 1.3.x…
  • Pressing Ctrl-U in the address line or any smart bookmark opens the source code of the current tab instead of just clearing the input field (without copying its content to the clipboard).
  • There is no more “search in current page” widget for the toolbar anymore. You have to open a (very slowly opening) popup window, if you want to have a search function besides the type-ahead search function.
  • If you click the “New” button for opening a new tab, it always opens at the end of the tab list instead of directly after the current tab. So I always have to move that tab back to where it should be. This sucks in Firefox, too. In Galeon 1.2.x there was a switch for this behaviour (as well there is in Opera), so both behaviours were possible: “Insert new tabs after current tabs”.
  • You cannot Drag & Drop a link from a window into itself in Galeon 1.3.x. This was a useful trick in Galeon 1.2.x if you want to work around barefaced hyperlinks with target attribute or want to temporarily not send requests with referrer header.
  • You can’t switch the proxy temporarily on or off just via the menu. You have to click “Edit → Preferences → [Wait for a few seconds] → Network → Configure Network Proxy → [Wait for even more seconds]” and then you can switch it temporarily on or off. In Galeon 1.2.x it’s as fast and intuitively as “Settings → Proxy → Disabled”.
  • And in general: Galeon 1.3.x is just fucking slow compared to Galeon 1.2.x. Every menu I open, every mouse click I make, every key I press, … 1.3.x is just not as responsive as Galeon 1.2.x was. (Although I guess that this is more a GNOME 1.x vs 2.x than a Galeon issue. But, well, you probably guessed it: GNOME 2.x sucks, too. ;-)
  • The bookmark editor in Galeon 1.3.x just sucks:
    • First, it’s just horribly slow (the rest of Galeon 1.3.x seems quite fast compared to it).
    • Drag & Drop often doesn’t work as you are used to how Drag & Drop works, e.g. you can’t drag items from the right folder content view pane to a folder in the left tree view pane.
    • Although I see that I may make sense in some environments, I dislike the “feature” that some of input fields for proprerties have been moved to a tabbed popup window. So you can’t scroll through your bookmarks anymore and have a look at e.g. when you added it whitout having to do a few click for each bookmark.
    • Also the tree view structure was easier to recognise than the new one without the helpful tree being shown as lines.
    • The Galeon 1.3.x bookmark editor doesn’t show the favicons neither in the folder content nor in the tree view. This another big step back in ergonomy.

And the following is the list, why Galeon 1.3.x also sucks. But these issues aren’t big problems for me, since I solved them somehow or can live with them:

  • Not all configuration options can be changed using Galeon’s configuration interface nor using the GNOME Control Center. Which user knows that he can change even more options by using gconf-editor or opening the URL about:config by typing it into the address field?!? A big minus in ergonomy for GNOME 2.x and Galeon 1.3.x.
  • The toolbar icons and the spinner are no more themeable.
  • There are no more buttons for toggling the history or bookmarks pane.
  • The toolbar isn’t editable by right clicking on a blank part of it.

Oh, and Epiphany even sucks more, because it has even less of my favourite Galeon 1.2.x features than Galeon 1.3.x has. Same counts for Ubuntu btw: There even is no Galeon in the standard distribution. (And no, Universe and Multiverse just don’t count for me. The philosophy “one application for one purpose” always sucks but does even more suck if we look at web browsers. Seems as if Ubuntu hasn’t learned from the history of Microsoft and the Internet Explorer. *slappingallaround*)

But not only to argue about Galeon 1.3.x, there are also some few details better than in Galeon 1.2.x, e.g. that the arrows for scrolling through the tab bar are located on both sides of the bar and not ony on the right. And the optional split view in the bookmark editor is quite fine (if Drag & Drop would work right)…

And yes, from the security point of view, Galeon 1.2.x sucks. It’s no more under developement, Galeon 1.2.14 from 17th of June 2004 was the last release. Also the Gecko releases based on the Mozilla 1.8 line (aka SeaMonkey 1.0 and Firefox 1.5) won’t be supported in Galeon 1.2.x, because anti-aliassing support for GTK1 has been dropped in those versions of Mozilla respective Gecko. But I’m sorry, sometimes, user interface and ergonomy come before security…

Oh, and btw: I would love it if somebody proves me wrong in any of my arguments against Galeon 1.3.x. (I just don’t think, someone will… ;-) But nevertheless feel free to leave a comment in the blog — They should work since now…

Now playing: Roxette — Jefferson

The Galeon 1.3.x Rant, Part 2½: Two completely different minds? //at 01:55 //by abe

from the flamewar dept.

Hmmm, there are people who left Usenet for Blogging. I never understood how blogging could replace Usenet. But at the moment I realize that Erich’s and my flamewar discussion about Galeon, GNOME and UI design is just like some thread in some newsgroup. That frightens me. But I have to answer to his recent posting, though, since his blog has no comment function. ;-)

So here’s my reply to his reply. :-)

Please, never claim again that kazekahase as a good UI. It’s sooo stupid.

Well, I haven’t played around with it long enough and already found some bugs to claim that, but it at least shows the right approach to how I expect a web browser to be: Fast and intuitively to use and configurable. So I do not claim that — yet.

close tab icon in the toolbar on the very left

Firefox has that, too, just on right side. If Kazekahase would have that as the only close button for tabs, I would agree that this isn’t that good. But it also has configurable close icons for each tab. And if the toolbar would be configurable, you easily could get rid of it. (I would remove it, too.)

preferences icon in the toolbar (I want to work, not toy around with my preferences!)

Just don’t click on it. And while you talk about it: Yet another thing I dislike with Galeon 1.3.x over 1.2.x is that it has no more “Settings” in the main menu. *eg*

No default keybinding for view source, view source opens in the back

Changed that easily by hovering with the mouse over “View source” and pressing Ctrl-U. Regarding the opening in the back, I agree with you. But since Kazekahase is still in a quite early state (in comparison to Galeon) I expect that this will change…

user level setting is useless, as shown by nautilus. Everone wants to punish himself by seeing all the options he has (and doesn’t understand)

There! Look! You said it: “Everyone wants configrability.” So why don’t give it to the users? Do you like dictators? I don’t. (With the usual exception: “Except if me being the dictator…” ;-)

A little bit later, you wrote:

No! Don’t tell people that there are more options. Don’t make them waste time by investigating what they could do, just let them use the browser…

You like censorship, too? Sorry, but since when a developer has to and can decide if looking through the configuration options is a waste of time or not for the user?

Do you think, looking through the list of packages to know what is available in dselect or aptitude is a waste of time? I’m sorry, but for me that’s the biggest fun in a new installation or after an dist-upgrade. Same counts for configuring a newly discovered application. What do you think was the first thing I did after starting Kazekahase? Yes, I went through all the configuration menus before loading a single web page.

two search fields wasting screen real estate (I already hate the one in firefox up there…

Yeah, history search could be done using the location field. But regarding “waste”: The default toolbar of Galeon 1.3.x wastes quite a lot of space by putting the location field in a toolbar of its own. (Can’t remember how the default toolbar in Galeon 1.2.x was… :-)

Default encoding: arabic […] Font settings let me choose the arabic fonts first…

Yeah, wondered about that, too, and will probably file a bug report about that.

autodetection disabled according to prefs.

Not sure about this. I saw that with other browsers (Galeon 1.3.20 under Sid for example *eg*), too, and it just meant “on” in comparsion to the other options which just hardwire the charset.

Fixed tab width not using my screen efficiently (“GNOM”) is all fitting on the tab label, thats a total waste!

Gotcha! Yet another thing I hate with Galeon 1.3.x. In Galeon 1.2.x this was configurable, in Galeon 1.3.x all tabs have the same width. Really a waste of space. But you probably can tell me how I can change this since you have changed it in your Galeon, too, or? (You have changed something in the configuration of your browser? Really?!? Woah! SCNR.)

Why do I have a “switch proxy” checkbox in the menu when I don’t have a proxy?

Why there is a possibility to configure a proxy if you don’t have one?

Don’t tell me that it makes more sense to you to setup stuff like Emacs- vs. windows-style keybindings in every single application you use. That is just stupid, sorry.

It may be of use to configure some keybindings globally. But there always should be the possibility to change them locally. BTW: AFAIK GTK offers such global keybindings, but GNOME is just overkill for me.

Also I don’t like mouse gestures.

You don’t have to use them. Just keep them switched off. But don’t disregard the thousands of people who use and like them.

When they were introduced in Galeon I tried them, but I never got a hang for them.

Mouse gestures in fact were initially my main reason to use Galeon and not Mozilla. I first heard about mouse gestures in Opera 3.x and in my HCI classes at university. I like them and started using them with Opera 3 under Windows. I very quickly found out that the Linux browsers I used, didn’t have them, because I got so used to them, that I kept making mouse gestures in browsers which have never heard about it. And Opera wasn’t available for Linux at that time. So I found Galeon (1.2.x of course ;-).

And in general they are not faster in my opinion.

It’s just like gear shifting in a car: After a while you just don’t even have to think about it anymore. You just do it. You’re used to it. You can’t say, that counts for click back buttons, do you? (Well, it counts for hitting escape buttons, depending on you keyboard. ;-)

They lack interim feedback IMHO.

Does Alt-Left has feedback? Do you have a force feedback keyboard?

Apart from using the mouse usually is quite slow anyway…

You use always the tab key to navigate through web sites or your bookmarks? (As far as I remember, you aren’t a big fan of type-ahead find either…)

I’m a keyboard and command-line freak, I hold talks about command-line efficiency. But when it comes to the web, I need mainly two things to navigate: A location bar with history completion and auto-suggestion and a mouse with at least three buttons and a scroll wheel. My web browser is also the only graphical application I use regularly. Everything else runs in text-mode.

I consider mouse gestures to be another big hype.

Well, then it’s a hype which works very good for about eight or nine years for me.

I load about 50 (internal and external) web pages when I log in.
Oh my god. I would DIE if I had to work that way!

You don’t have to, but I want to. Why should I open all that pages manually, if Galeon can load sessions?

I let you use browsers the way you do (just use them and adapt yourself), and you let me use browsers the way, I do (configure and adapt them).

Today, also Wouter Verhelst joined the discussion with visualising very nice and clearly what the core of our discussion is: How to deal with experienced users who know what they want at same time as with beginners who should be able to start working right off.

Regarding Wouters rhetoric question, why he left GNOME, my answer is: Because I just don’t need it. I tried sawmill/sawfish and metacity with GNOME, but it just didn’t satisfy me and it doesn’t have anything I really need. fvwm2 with the keybindings a friend of mine and me developed during our HCI studies at university (about 8 or 9 years ago) worked better and were easier to implement. So after a few months of using a GNOME desktop I got back to good ol’ fvwm, which still works fine and fast on my 400 MHz desktop, although fvwm evolved over the years from version 1.0 to 2.5 since then.

Theory Girl //at 01:55 //by abe

from the cover dept.

“Theory Girl” is a cover of “Uptown Girl” by Billy Joel played by The CSE Band (you can also get the MP3 on their website) with insightful, computer science related lyrics. They also have some other nice CS related parodies like “Mr Grad TA Man” (“Mr. Tambourine Man”) and “The End Of Grad School” (“Sound of Silence”).

Now playing: The CSE Band — Theory Girl

Tell me which music you like and I tell who you are //at 01:55 //by abe

from the now-playing dept.

The German science news site Wissenschaft.de is reporting that your music taste is very closely related to your personality and that it’s easier to judge people by the music they hear than by seeing pictures or videos of them. Source is a scientific study by Dr. Samuel Gosling and Peter Rentfrow from The University of Texas at Austin.

Man, that would give an interesting quiz meme on the Planets! ;-)

I wonder, how my usually negative or decade-based definition of my music taste is that way analysable: I like nearly every music from the ’60s to the ’90s except hip-hop, rap and techno. :-)

Now playing: Jethro Tull — Something’s On The Move

German voting statistics viewed from a Debian System //at 01:54 //by abe

from the screenshot dept.

The last years I always sticked to the voting statistics of the ARD Tagesschau, since the only acceptable other news source in German television, ZDF heute corporated with MSNBC.

But this year, also the Tagesschau showed the Microsoft logo in some statistic on TV, which the German Linux association LIVE tried to get removed by stating that this an illegal advertisment in a political TV show.

Well, they weren’t successful, but at least the statistics on the web don’t show an M$ logo. But they have another problem:

My desktop system, a Pentium II with 400 MHz and 578 MB of RAM, is still running Woody, because I yet can’t live without Galeon 1.2.x, which was replaced on Sarge by Galeon 1.3.x — a complete rewrite which lacks most features I liked in Galeon 1.2.x. Galeon 1.2.x doesn’t show the above mentioned website that good, so I tried some browsers from Sarge. But none of them showed that page correctly:

Galeon 1.2.5 based on Mozilla 1.4.2 from Debian 3.0 Woody

Firefox 1.0.4 from Debian 3.1 Sarge

Konqueror 3.3.2 from Debian 3.1 Sarge

Dillo 0.8.3 from Debian 3.1 Sarge

So interestingly, the page is best readable in Konqueror and Dillo while only Firefox doesn’t show all of the main content of the page.

Somehow I fear, the pages have been “optimised” for MSIE, while the ZDF voting statistics page just don’t work at all: It needs JavaShit and Flash. *plonk*

Regarding the published extrapolations: I’m at least happy that CDU (black, right conservative) and FDP (yellow, business liberal / free market) probably won’t have a majority. But what this will result in is still unknown. There are too many options open for our politicians to do any prediction. I would probably prefer Red-Red-Green or Red-Green as we have it at them moment. Worst case for me would be Black-Yellow.

Heute nacht regnet’s eh nicht… //at 01:45 //by abe

Aus der Murphys-Gesetz Abteilung

Dachte ich. Und der Wetterbericht auch. Und so ließ das Dach der Ente offen. Komm’ ich morgens schneller weg, dachte ich.

Dann nachts aufwachen, weil irgendwas plötzlich so rauscht. Nach ein paar Sekunden war ich in meiner Jeans und meinen Tevas auf dem Weg nach unten, raus aus dem Haus, zum Auto hinrennen, den Regen nach kurzem Grummeln ignorierend. Es schiffte in Kübeln.

Murphy vs. XTaran — 1:0

So schnell es geht, das Dach zugerollt, auf den Fahrersitz gesessen und das Dach von innen eingerastet (was normalweise nur von außen geht, erst recht mit dem zusätzlichen Sonnensegel über den vorderen Sitzen) und zugemacht. Uff. Das Sonnensegel hatte wenigstens die Sitzflächen der Vordersitze einigermaßen trocken gehalten. Glück im Unglück.

Read more…

Das Merkel wird Kanzler //at 01:44 //by abe

Aus der Och-menno Abteilung

Ob Treibholz jetzt immer noch stolz auf dieses Land ist? SvenK nimmt’s wenigstens mit Humor, auch wenn er vor ein paar Wochen noch suizidgefährdet klang.

Naja, das Merkel ist ja zum Glück nicht ganz so schlimm wie Dubya, aber ich frage mich grade trotzdem, ob nach sorryeverybody.com nun auch sorryeverybody.de kommt. Geben tut’s das ja schonmal, gehören einem Herrn Reiner Rusch aus Haan, leitet aber auf eine W3 Solutions GmbH in Berlin weiter. Schade…

Hmmm… tschuldigungalle.de oder tschuldigungjedermann.de gibt’s allerdings noch nicht. Und tschuldigung.de zeigt in einem Frame auf http://gonzo2003.mine.nu/, was aber grade nicht erreichbar ist. Naja, wenigstens dafür entschuldigt hat sich der Besitzer ja mit der Domain schonmal…

*weiterles* Soso, Stoiber wird also Wirtschaftsminister. Da werden sich die Dealer aber freuen.

Nuja, wollen wir mal hoffen, daß die Große Koalition nicht — wie einer meiner Kollegen hier schwarzmalt — die Zweitstimme bei Wahlen und die Bürgerrechte abschafft. Letztere sind eh schon tief genug gesunken. Und wir wollen hoffen, daß Gysi Recht behält und die Große Koalition recht bald wieder auseinanderbricht und man dann — ohne Schröder — auf Rot-Rot-Grün hoffen darf. Denn schließlich hat Schröder […] aus der SPD eine zweite Union gemacht, wie Gysi so schön im taz-Interview formuliert. Schröder scheint nun aufgegeben zu haben. Und ohne den Möchtegern-CDUler Schröder kann man wieder Hoffnung für die SPD haben. (Und ja, ich bin unverbesserlicher Optimist. ;-)

Now playing: Skyclad — Fainting by Numbers

Nachtrag, 19:45 Uhr: Gerade lese ich in der taz in einen Artikel um die Direktkandidatur des wegen antisemitischer Äußerungen aus der CDU ausgeschlossenen Martin Hohmann: Sollte Hohmann wirklich die meisten Erststimmen bekommen und direkt in den Bundestag einziehen, würden die Zweitstimmen der Hohmann-Wähler ungültig. Das sieht das Wahlgesetz bei Direktkandidaten vor, die keine Landesliste im Rücken haben. Kann mir bitte jemand den Sinn hinter dieser Regelung erklären und wieso ich trotz ausfühlichsten Unterrichtungen über das deutsche Wahlrecht zu Schulzeiten und politischem Interesse noch nie etwas davon gehört habe? (Nebenbei: Hohmann hat immerhin 21,5% der Erststimmen bekommen, die CDU aber trotz Befürchtungen das Direktmandat mit 39,1% der Stimmen vor der SPD mit 29,7% gewonnen.)

Jesus Christus Sohn des Fliegenden Spaghettimonsters? //at 01:44 //by abe

Aus der Was-Dubya-kann-können-wir-schon-lange Abteilung

Nachdem insbesondere der Präsident eines gewissen Staates (United States of Jesus oder so ähnlich), in dem es offiziell genauso wie unserem Staate eine Trennung von Staat und Kirche geben soll, massiv die Lehre vom “Intelligenten Design” des Universums propagiert und dies auch als Zweifel an der Darwinschen Evolutionstheorie im Biologieunterricht lehren läßt, hat sich eine sympatisch-zynische Gegen-Religion gebildet: Die Pastafari, die an das Fliegenede Spaghettimonster als Gott “glauben”. Sie haben sich zum Ziel gesetzt im Schuluntericht in Kansas gleichberechtigt mit der kreationistischen Ansicht von Dubya gelehrt zu werden.

Boing Boing bietet sogar 1 Millionen US-Dollar Belohnung für denjenigen, der empirisch widerlegt, daß Jesus Christus Sohn des Fliegenden Spaghettimonsters ist.

Nette Religion das ist, genauso wie der Jediismus. Aber Darwinisten, Atheïsten und Agnostiker sind mir trotzdem wesentlich sympathischer.

Now playing: Herbert Grönemeyer — Amerika

Read more…

Genialer Blondinenwitz //at 01:44 //by abe

Aus der muahahaha Abteilung

Normalerweise sind ja Blondinenwitze IMHO nix, was in ein Blog gehört, aber der hier ist so genial wie alt (erste Vorkommen datieren auf Juli 2003 :-), der muß einfach verlinkt werden. *grins*

Die CDU schreckt im Wahlkampf auch nicht vor Urheberrechtsverletzungen zurück //at 01:43 //by abe

Aus der Wir-ziehen-die-Dinger-durch-vor-denen-wir-Euch-immer-gewarnt-haben Abteilung

War zwar schon letzte Woche, aber ich hab’s trotzdem erst heute über de.alt.netdigest mitbekommen: Die CDU bedient sich ja seit einiger des 73er Rolling Stones Hit “Angie” zu Werbezwecken. Anscheinend allerdings ohne die entsprechenden Rechte dazu zu haben. Sowohl die eurpäische Vertretung der Stones als auch eine Sprecherin der Stones erklärte, die Stones hätten keinerlei Zustimmung dazu erteilt. Die CDU verweist dagegen auf die GEMA, mit der sie das Problem im Vorab “geklärt” hätte. Die GEMA aber widerum läßt nur das verlauten, was auch zu erwarten war: Sie können dazu gar keine Erlaubnis geben und sie hätten der CDU dies sowie daß sie sich an die Rechteinhaber persönlich wenden müßten, auch “klargemacht”.

Wie war das nochmal mit “Hart aber gerecht”?

Nur leider scheint’s sowohl die europäische Verwertungsgesellschaft als auch den Stones selbst nicht allzu sehr zu jucken, d.h. sie werden keine Klage anstreben, womit die CDU im Gegensatz zum gemeinen Raubkopierer ungehindert weiter Songs spielen darf, bei dem komischerweise grade mal der Titel zu Wahlkampf paßt: “Angie, Angie! With no loving in our souls and no money in our coats, you can’t say we’re satisfied…”

Erst die Bewohner der neuen Bundesländer als Kälber und Idioten beschimpfen, und dann fröhlich gegen Urheberrechte verstoßen. Hoffen wir mal, daß die Union die nächsten Wochen so weiter macht, sonst sehe ich schwarz mit dieser Republik.

Now playing: Herbert Grönemeyer — Mit Gott

Von taz-Lesern und Christen //at 01:41 //by abe

Aus der provokativen Abteilung

Heute habe ich meinen ersten Leserbrief an die taz geschrieben:

From: Axel Beckert <abe@deuxchevaux.org>
To: briefe@taz.de
Subject: Von taz-Lesern und Christen

Öffentlicher Leserbrief zum Kommentar "Zwischen Hysterie und
Desinteresse" von Stefan Reinecke aus der taz vom 7.1.06

Lieber Stefan Reinecke,

ich mag ja die taz und auch die Kommentare in der taz, selbst wenn
bzw. gerade weil sie manchmal recht bissig sind und auch hin wieder
dem Leser etwas unterstellen. Aber der gesamten taz-Leserschaft zu
unterstellen, sie seien alle Christen, ist schon heftiger Tobak.

  Ist das Alte Testament mit dem Grundgesetz vereinbar?

Als ich das las, kamen mir ungefähr folgende Gedanken: »Nette Idee. Da
findet sich sicher was. "Du sollst keine anderen Götter neben mir
haben." klingt z.B. nicht so, als wäre es mit der Religionsfreiheit
nach Grundgesetz, Artikel 4, Abs. 1 vereinbar: "Die Freiheit des
Glaubens, des Gewissens und die Freiheit des religiösen und
weltanschaulichen Bekenntnisses sind unverletzlich."«

Und dann kommt sowas:

  Überlegen Sie gut, denn wenn Sie falsch antworten, steht Ihre
  Verfassungstreue in Zweifel.

Wie bitte?!? Ja, klar, das gilt für Christen, aber das steht hier als
hätte der vorherige Satz auch "Ist die taz mit dem Grundgesetz
vereinbar?" lauten können -- dann wäre der Hinweis nämlich

Sicher, der Kommentar will zeigen, wie abstrus die Politik der CDU im
Ländle isch -äh- ist, und er hat sicher auch beim einen oder anderen
Christen die gewünschte Wirkung gezeigt und ihn recht kalt erwischt,
aber z.B. bei Agnostiker und Atheisten, von denen es in Deutschland
und insbesondere unter den taz-Lesern sicher nicht gerade wenig gibt,
geht der Schuß kräftig nach hinten los.

		Mit freundlichem Gruß, Axel Beckert
/~\                                    | Axel Beckert
\ /  ASCII Ribbon Campaign             | abe@deuxchevaux.org
 X   Say No to HTML in E-Mail and News | abe@fsinfo.cs.uni-sb.de
/ \                                    | http://abe.home.pages.de/

Bin mal gespannt, ob er abgedruckt wird. :-)

Ist die NPD am Verzweifeln? //at 01:41 //by abe

Aus der Na-hoffentlich! Abteilung

Oder warum stellt sie zur Bundestagswahl Kandidaten mit so richtig deutschen Namen wie “Rene Rodriguez-Teufer” auf?

Mal ganz davon abgesehen, daß sich das Endergebnis der Wahl dank der NPD vermutlich um zwei Wochen verzögert

Bloggen und Usenet //at 01:39 //by abe

Aus der Quoted-Printable Abteilung

Der heutige bzw. jetzt schon gestrige UserFriendly hat etwas erfaßt, was Kris K=F6hntopp schon länger fest gestellt hat. Aus den Fachbegriffen der Informatik:

404: Blog
Ein Haufen Scriptkiddies ist gerade dabei, USENET in bunt neu zu erfinden, und machen derzeit einen Haufen Fehler neu, die schon seit 20 Jahren nicht mehr Gegenstand der Forschung sind. (Kristian Köhntopp)

Komischerweise soll angeblich genau jener Herr K=F6hntopp dem Usenet abgeschworen haben und jetzt nur noch bloggen. *g*

Ich hab dem Usenet zwar nicht abgeschworen, aber auf mich trifft ein anderer Fachbegriff der Informatik zu bzw. genauer trifft er bei mir nicht zu:

79: Usenet
Ich habe zuviel Freizeit. (Florian Kuehnert)

Leider nicht. Aber zum Glück braucht Bloggen wesentlich weniger Zeit als Usenet. :-)

Now Playing: Rockapella — The Gummi Bears Theme Song

Wir leben in Kleinbloggersdorf… //at 01:39 //by abe

Aus der Saarland-Effekt Abteilung

Tja, da spielt man ein wenig mit GeoURL rum und was muß man dabei entdecken? Das nächste Blog “steht” gleich ein paar Straßen weiter.

Die Welt ist klein, im Saarland, im IRC, in der Open-Source-Szene und anscheinend auch in Kleinbloggersdorf. :-) Schade, daß es SixDegrees.com nicht mehr gibt.

Und nein, liebes Google, ich meine nicht Kleinblittersdorf im Saarland, das kenne ich noch aus meiner Studienzeit. :-)

Mein erster Löschantrag in Wikipedia… //at 01:39 //by abe

Aus der /dev/tonne Abteilung

Meinem ersten Löschantrag in Wikipedia wurde bereits nach 4 Minuten stattgegeben. Beantragt habe ich die Löschung eines Redirects von “Das hässliche Entlein” auf den bereits im Oktober 2004 gelöschten Artikel “Das häßliche Entlein”. Daß das bis dahin noch niemand gemerkt hat… Aber das ist halt Wikipedia… :-)

P.M. und die Aktualität //at 01:38 //by abe

Aus der Peter-Moosleitners-aktuelles-Magazin Abteilung

Auf der Suche nach interessanten News für Symlink schaue ich hin- und wieder mal bei P.M. rein. Dort stieß ich heute auf einen Artikel “NASA kann Gedanken lesen”.

Klingt alles schön und gut, aber da ich bei den P.M. “Wissensnews” gewohnt bin, daß unter zirka jeder zweiten Story ein Link “Original-Artikel bei Freenet” druntersteht (welcher dann meist ein paar Monate alt ist), bin ich mißtrauisch und finde untendrunter auch prompt einen Link “ORF”, der zu einem FutureZone-Artikel verweist. Allerdings einem nach deren, seit Monaten nicht mehr unterstütztem, altem URL-Schema, das nur noch “Error in application futurezone — Object not found.” bringt.

Nun gut, Monate alte Inhalte in P.M.-Artikel ist man ja gewohnt, aber daß sie dann nicht einmal die Links dazu überprüfen, akaschiert das nicht wirklich besonders gut. Also machen wir uns auf die Suche nach der neuen URL der FuZo-Story.

Aber bei der FuZo gibt es keinen Suchen-Link mehr. Sehr verwunderlich. Dafür gibt es auf der ORF-Startseite an mehreren Stellen einen Link zu http://suche.orf.at/. Dort präsentieren sich einem tausend Suchfelder. Das erste hervorgehobene ist anscheinend “nur” eine Google-Suche, also nehmen wir das allererste, etwas dezenter gehaltene, neben dem irgendwas unleserliches steht und tippen ein “nasa gedanken”. Fehler: Ein Nickname darf keine Leerzeichen enthalten. Äh, hallo? Ok, nochmal nur nach “nasa” suchen: “1 Nick gefunden” *aufgeb* Der ORF will anscheinend nicht, daß man einfach und schnell auf den ORF-Seiten suchen kann.

Google hilft, wenn auch mit dem selben kaputten Link wie P.M., nur hat Google die entsprechende Seite netterweise noch im Cache.

Datum des FuZo-Artikels: 20.03.04 — Klasse, das sind bei P.M. also “News”?!? Ich glaube, das brauche ich echt nicht mehr lesen. Aber andererseits, was will ich auch von P.M. erwarten: P.M. fand ich eh auch schon inhaltlich selten so interessant wie früher das hobby Magazin der Technik (RIP) oder die nicht ganz so aber dennoch recht populärwissenschaftlichen Magazine Spektum und Bild der Wissenschaft. Nur eines muß man den P.M. Wissensnews lassen: Sie geben ihre Quellen an. Im Gegensatz zu z.B. Golem oder insbesondere Heise.

Ach, und bevor Klagen kommen: Ja, auch bei Symlink, Slashdot oder einem sonstigen Community-Ticker kommen ab und an mal etwas ältere Nachrichten, aber kaum so häufig oder so alt. Mal ganz davon abgesehen, daß P.M. das professionell macht — professionell bzgl. des Zwecks, nicht der Art und Aufmachung her. ;-)

Bei manchem Spam ist man froh, daß SpamAssassin ihn nicht erwischt… //at 01:38 //by abe

Aus der Lustiges-in-der-Inbox Abteilung

Mir ist zwar noch nicht klar, warum der SpamAssassin diesen Spam nicht erwischt hat, aber ich bin froh drüber. Denn diese automatisierte Übersetzung ist zum totlachen:

Date: Wed, 21 Sep 2005 13:17:30 +0000
Subject: LifeProfit Inc.
X-Spam-Status: No, hits=1.6 required=5.0 tests=BAYES_44,DNS_FROM_RFCI_DSN,
        autolearn=no version=2.64

LifeProfit Inc. kann Ihnen helfen, Ihre Traume zu zwingen, sich, bekommend
das monatliche Gehalt, das das Internet einwirkt, zu verwirklichen.

Um mit LifeProfit Inc. zu arbeiten, brauchen:
? Ein B?rger Deutschlands zu sein
? das Vorhandensein der Rechnung in der Bank
? die Vereinigung des Computers zum Internet
? ist ein wenig es Ihre freie Zeit

Wie es arbeitet:

Arbeitend f?r uns wie die Bezahlung, Die den Manager bearbeitet, werden Sie
Teil Aus der neuen Tendenz im weltumfassenden Banksystem. Die Pflichten Die
Lage ist einfach, und das Einkommen hangt nur von Ihren Bem?hungen ab.

Sie Sollen - die Zahlungen der Sendung zwischen unseren Kunden, die Ihr
Interesse von jeder Operation bekommen, machen.
Hauptsachlich werden es 5 %, mit jeder Sendung, die Ihr Interesse z?chten
wird. Unsere Kunden bekommen 1000 EURO zu 20000.


LifeProfit Inc. sorgt sich um Ihr Bl?hen. Machen Sie Ihr Leben besser
zusammen mit der LifeProfit Inc.!

Und daß Postbank und Deutsche Bank jetzt zur Deutschen Postbank fusioniert haben, weiß ich auch erst seit dieser netten Mail:

From support@deutsche-bank.de Tue Sep 20 21:53:14 2005
From: PostBank <support@deutsche-bank.de>
Date: Tue, 20 Sep 2005 15:45:19 -0400
Subject: PostBank online banking
X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook, Build 10.0.2616
X-Spam-Level: ****
X-Spam-Status: No, score=4.7 required=5.0 tests=BAYES_50,FORGED_OUTLOOK_HTML,
        autolearn=no version=3.0.2

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   Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,
   In Verbindung damit, daß wir in unserem Land in eine schwierige
   Situation mit online - Banking geraten sind, wurde uns empfohlen, alle
   online - Konten von unserer Bank zu kontrollieren, um die
   "Tageskonten" festzustellen, die von den Betrügern dazu benutzt
   werden, das gestohlene Geld zu waschen. Demzufolge bitten wir unsere
   Kunden inständig, das Formular einer Kontobestätigung, das sich auf
   unserer offiziellen Web-Seite befindet, auszufüllen.
   Jene Konten, die bis zum 27.08.05 auf diesem Formular nicht angegeben
   werden, werden bis zur Feststellung der Bedingungen ihrer Eröffnung
   und Benutzung blockiert. Diese Revision betrifft sowohl die
   Privatkunden, als auch die Firmenkunden.

   Wir bitten um Verzeihung für die Unannehmlichkeiten, die wir Ihnen
   bereitet haben, wir hoffen auf Ihre Hilfe und gegenseitiges
   Mit freundlichen Grüßen,
      © 2005 Deutsche Postbank AG


   Visible links
   Hidden links:
   1. http://postbanking.net/

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Klasse, nicht?

about:blank ist unsicher sagt der MSIE //at 01:37 //by abe

Aus der Ich-bin-die-Software-vor-der-ich-Dich-immer-gewarnt-haben Abteilung

Ich habe auf meinem Windows-2003-Testrechner im Büro about:blank als Startseite des MSIE eingestellt. Trotzdem kommt seit einem der letzten Windows-Updates beim Starten des MSIE immer irgendeine Microschrott-Seite. Einmal nach einem Update kann ich das als Marketing oder sonstwas noch verstehen, aber jetzt dauerhaft?

Zum Testen, ob wenigstens der Button “Startseite” noch tut, habe ich drauf geklickt. Und bekam das da:

Screenshot einer MSIE-Warnung davor, daß about:blank aufgrund der verstärkten Sicherheitskonfiguration nicht angezeigt werden könne

Die Konfiguration auf diesem Rechner ist eine etwas gelockerte Windows 2003 Standard-Konfiguration.

Inhalt von about:blank ist übrigens:


Danke, Microsoft, daß Du mich vor einer solch gefährlichen Seite bewahrt hast!

WYSE: Jetzt mit Linux 6! //at 01:36 //by abe

Aus der Terminator Abteilung

dkg hat gestern auf Pro-Linux einen Artikel über die neue grml 0.6 geschrieben. Soweit so gut und alles ganz toll. Nur ist da dieser Flash-Werbebanner von WYSE über dem Artikel.

Als erstes stieß mir das “Wo f hlt sich Tux am wohlsten?” auf. Kein Umlaut. Nuja, mag vielleicht noch an der frisch auf 10.0 geupgradeten SuSE liegen. (Ausführlicher Rant Bericht dazu kommt noch. *eg*)

Heftiger war allerdings die Antwort: “In einem Winterm ThinClient mit Linux Version 6!”

<sarcasm>Linux 6?!? Da ist aber ein altes Linux drauf. Ich hab’ schon Linux 10!</sarcasm>

Mal ganz davon abgesehen, daß ein Klick auf das Banner zu http://www.wyse.de/linux/ führt, was per META-Refresh mit einer Sekunde Verzögerung auf http://de.wyse.com/linux/ weiterleitet und damit auch nicht grade von sehr viel Durchblick in Sachen Medium und Leserschaft zeugt sowie den Groll desjenigen, der wissen will, was verdammt nochmal mit “Linux 6” gemeint sein könnte, nur noch weiter aufheizt.

Wann lernen die Marketing-Fuzzies endlich mal, daß es (noch) kein “Linux 6” oder “Linux 10” gibt, dafür aber wesentlich schnellere, bessere und sinnvollere Methoden als META-Refresh? (in diesem Fall z.B. die Werbung direkt mit der eigentlichen Seite verlinken… *hinthint*) Sorry, aber mit so ‘ner Werbung ist man zumindest auf Pro-Linux gewaltig fehl am Platz und vergrault sich eher potentielle Kunden als welche zu gewinnen. Ich werde jedenfalls WYSE zukünftig genüßlich meiden.

SuSE: Amüsantes im Abo //at 01:35 //by abe

Aus der Marketing Abteilung

Ein Blog-Eintrag bei Jörn (das Blog habe ich über einen Blog-Kommentar bei nion entdeckt) erinnerte mich daran: Gestern kam in der Firma die SuSE 10.0 aus dem Abo an. Was mich am SuSE-Abo ja am meisten amüsiert sind die Werbesprüche auf der Packung:

Früher (bis SuSE 7.3) waren da ja mehr amüsante als hilfreiche Texte drauf, so z.B. die Fragen der FAQ:

  • »Nach der Installation bekomme ich immer die Fehlermeldung “login:”. Was mache ich falsch?«
  • »Ich habe mich eingeloggt und sehe nur “linux #” – Wie komme ich denn nun in Linux hinein?«
  • »Ich habe mir versehentlich einen Kernel kompiliert. Wie bekomme ich wieder den originalen SuSE-Kernel installiert?«

Danach kam erstmal eine Weile Bücherwerbung auf den CD-Verpackungen, seit einiger Zeit aber wieder zumindest milde amüsantes Marketingblabla:

  • »Keine langwierigen Downloads, direkt von CD oder DVD installieren« — Hmmm, warum habe ich mir (bzw. in meinem Fall der $BRÖTCHGEBER) das Zeugs wohl gekauft?
  • Oder der hier: »[…] im openSUSE-Projekt […] treffen sich Linux Entwickler, Software Designer, und Anwender, um die beste Linux Distribution weltweit zu entwickeln.« — Ahja, kaum tut man so, als sei man keine kommerzielle Linux-Distribution mehr, darf man größenwahnsinning werden? Wobei, ja, ich vergaß: Vergleichende Werbung für kostenlose Dinge ist ja schon seit Ewigkeiten in .de erlaubt. (Von den ganzen fehlenden Bindestrichen des Marketingsprechs will ich hier mal abgesehen…)

Aber nicht nur der Amüsantheitsfaktor, auch die Qualität der Verpackung wird immer schlechter: CDs und DVDs sind diesesmal in Papiertüten in einer kleinen Box. Das letzte Mal war’s wenigstens noch ein Pappheftchen mit unübersichtlich vielen Faltungen… Tja, früher war halt auch bei SuSE alles besser. (Bis auf YaST oder so… ;-)

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Hackergotchi of Axel Beckert


This is the blog or weblog of Axel Stefan Beckert (aka abe or XTaran) who thought, he would never start blogging... (He also once thought, that there is no reason to switch to this new ugly Netscape thing because Mosaïc works fine. That was about 1996.) Well, times change...

He was born 1975 at Villingen-Schwenningen, made his Abitur at Schwäbisch Hall, studied Computer Science with minor Biology at University of Saarland at Saarbrücken (Germany) and now lives in Zürich (Switzerland), working at the Network Security Group (NSG) of the Central IT Services (Informatikdienste) at ETH Zurich.

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