We’ve got a ton of them, and more every day. Better make some homemade spaghetti sauce or something.
Over the years, I’ve had various boxes around the house that you could consider a home server. Often, these were just my desktop machine doing double duty. Occasionally, they’d be some old semi-retired tower machine shoved under a spare table, gobbling frightening amounts of electricity with spinning drives and cooling fans making way too much noise.
It’s really funny to think that this ~$50 guy is really just as powerful as the >$100,000 “medium iron” HP-UX box I was sysadmining barely more than a decade and a half ago.
These handled the typical home server tasks: holding photos, music, backups, whatever. Serving media inside the house. For many years, this very weblog lived on home servers. With the advent of ubiquitous cloud storage, I’ve outsourced most of these tasks.
It’s still useful to keep some of these things within the home network. What doesn’t really make sense anymore is devoting floor space and lots of watts to some ugly, oversized tower.
Earlier this year I finally bought my first Raspberry Pi system. They’re basically teeny tiny Unix boxes (roughly the size of a pack of cigarettes) for hobbyists. They basically pack a smartphone-level SoC on a small board that can be deployed with minimal fanfare for all sorts of applications.
Every now and then, you need to stress test your tools.
The old landing page for this domain had been pretty much unchanged since the 1990s. The logo was gif file I’d created in (no joke) 1994. The original logo was done in Adobe Illustrator, but at some point I lost the master. The page was all done with tables, and in an age of large, high-DPI screens (and small mobile ones), it looked increasingly ridiculous.
I spent 5 minutes (seriously, and 3 of those were checking style tag syntax on w3.org) in my text editor and created a new version that uses CSS and SVG and should look fine in every modern browser, desktop and mobile. I didn’t bother using hacks to make it work in IE < 10 because, sorry, IDGAF.
I took the opportunity to tighten the tracking and make the grunge slightly less obnoxious. I hope it’s still identifiably itself:
Of course, now that we can render vectors in web browsers I made it freely scale with the page size.
You can see the end result here.
At some point I’ll redo the blog layout too. Baby steps.
I don’t know if this is useful at all if you don’t subscribe to Apple Music, but I wanted to see how their new(ish) embedding/linking tools work. It’s also an excuse to share a few songs from what has been my favorite record label for a few years now, Ghost Box Records.
There’s this older playground in Allen Park, kinda wedged between a subdivision and some train tracks. There’s a ball field in one corner.
It’s not a Modern Safety Playground™, no, not at all. There’s rust and the heights of the slides and swings are… challenging. I’ll tell you, though, that The Boy loved this slide like none other I’ve ever seen him on.
I think the first time Bud Wade cut my hair I was probably 8 years old or so. He started cutting hair as a teenager in a basement on (I think) 9th Street in Ecorse. While my Dad still lived in Ecorse, he’d get haircuts there, too.
This isn’t the first time Jake’s had a haircut, but it’s the first time he’s been to Bud’s Barber Shop.
One of the best things about having a very little kid as an older parent is getting to re-experience all the most fun parts of childhood: getting a new toy, visiting Santa and the Easter Bunny, etc.
The little guy will be coming home from nursery school to see this one, and I can’t wait.
I’m probably the last Mac owner in the world to switch to a Retina MBP. My problem has been that Macs stay useful for so long — my previous machine was over 5 years old, and quite honestly, still works fine. It really only had one real limtation — it maxed out at 8GB of RAM, which made it uncomfortably tight when I needed to run virtual machines on it.
Compute-wise, I went from
It’s enough of an improvement to feel during everyday use, especially when I’m doing a lot of things at the same time (I gained 2 compute cores and a lot of cache, and the built-in SSD is much faster than the third-party one I installed in the old machine.)
Honestly, though, the biggest difference is the screen. The gorgeous, gorgeous screen. Combined with subpixel anti-aliasing, I’ve never seen a sharper display.
Treated myself to this as a late Christmas gift. Just playing around with it I’m pretty happy so far. Between 1990-1999 I used to support a small company’s worth of artists, illustrators, and layout people. I’ve never claimed to be any sort of artist, but out necessity I picked up some facility with the applications those folks used (primarily the Adobe suite.)
If you’d told me that I’d one day be able to buy an application that had essentially all of the functionality of Illustrator (at least the parts I used) for 1/20th of the price I’d have said you were nuts.
Apparently there’s a pretty feature-comparable iPad version that reads and writes the same files. I’ll try that out later.
I may start doing this periodically.
Here’s a subset of addresses from which I’ve received dictionary-based SSH attacks over the last month or so.
I’m guessing the majority of these are zombied boxes.
18.104.22.168.in-addr.arpa. 86400 IN PTR 216.ip-158-69-212.net. 22.214.171.124.in-addr.arpa. 77998 IN PTR ppp83-66.hz.zj.cninfo.net. 126.96.36.199.in-addr.arpa. 8402 IN PTR 212-83-148-113.rev.poneytelecom.eu. 188.8.131.52.in-addr.arpa. 58317 IN PTR 6b.c4.acb8.ip4.static.sl-reverse.com. 184.108.40.206.in-addr.arpa. 2125 IN PTR 220.127.116.11.adsl-pool.jx.chinaunicom.com.
Sometimes you have to do something dumb because software is being a butt. This has been one of those times.
Will quick-boil these and toss them with a touch of salt, coriander, and olive oil to go with tonight’s grilled pork chops.
Biggest security gap — an open mouth.