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September 28, 2008

Debate One: One Lie, Four Repeated Errors

Filed under: — Sven @ 01:55 GMT

Well, I didn’t watch much, but I just read what FactCheck.org said about it. According to them, the only outright lie seems to have come from Mr. McCain, McCain was way off the mark when he said that earmarks in federal appropriations bills had tripled in the last five years…In fact, earmarks have actually gone down. I really wanted an outright lie from Mr. Obama too, but there was not any last night.

Then, these bugged me:

…McCain repeated a misleading line we’ve heard before.

Obama was out of date…As we’ve said before…

McCain repeated an exaggerated claim…

McCain repeated the false insinuation…

Each with a link to past articles that that showed the correction. It’s one thing to goof, but to do it again? Ok, perhaps the log is in my eye for there splinter, but I’m a simpleton, they are going to be in the position formally known as the most powerful person in the free world. Mr. McCain forwent correction three times, and Mr. Obama once. So I guess the Dems win this one too. Most of the others corrections, though worthy of FackCheck.org, where trivial.

As I think both Democrats and Republicans politician have been sticking it to fellow Americans for decades, I really wanted the misinformation to be more even.

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September 19, 2008

The Irish Passport conspiracy

Filed under: — brendan @ 12:30 GMT

My Irish passport expires in a few months. I figure we’ve no plans to go anywhere for the remainder of the year, probably, so why not look into getting it renewed? I visited the Official Site to get the scoop.

If you pay An Post for Passport Express, you’ll get it in 10 days.

If you don’t, and want to be frugal since there’s no rush, you can do it via regular post—accepting it will take “at least 4-6 weeks” to get it back. Which instills the fear in the reader that something may come up in the next two months which would make you need it, and you’d of course be screwed without it. So I’d guess most people go via An Post.

I wonder: what’s the functional difference between the Passport Express delivery box and the Stupid Shit Regular Post box? I expect they sit side-by-side in the same building, and the Regular Post box also serves as a great place to rest bags full of those completed-and-barely-shredded Passport Express applications awaiting recycling.

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Using Ubuntu? Install dnsmasq and go faaaaaaaaaaaaast.

Filed under: — brendan @ 11:13 GMT

Want to make your browsing go really quickly? Unless your host is running bind/named itself, you can make it stop asking another computer (possibly over in your ISP) every time you try to visit a site or download your mail. Sometimes there’s a pregnant pause at it’s looking it up—again.

The dnsmasq program is really fantastic and keeps a local cache of the addresses you’re asking about. Your computer has its own local place to scribble down things you’ll probably ask for again soon.

Instructions for setting it up are also available on an Ubuntu blog, with the quickest steps in its first comment.

P.S. It’s not just Ubuntu, actually—you could put it on all sorts of systems, including Macs running OS X.

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September 17, 2008

Converting Windows .HLP files to a better format

Filed under: — brendan @ 11:28 GMT

Some work I’m doing involved using a bunch of 3rd party tools. They come with .HLP files for user documentation, but I’m doing my development on a Linux host. I discovered a great tool called helpdeco which produced a few different files, on the basis that you may want to change things and regenerate the .HLP file.

For me, the RTF file it produced was exactly what I needed. I was able to get at the info I wanted, and didn’t have to reboot my laptop in order to read the help file. (It occurs to me that invoking some command under the wine emulator may have also worked. Another time. 🙂 )

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September 16, 2008

@#$%&* Mighty Mouse

Filed under: — Sven @ 13:42 GMT

I got this Apple Mighty Mouse at work. I configured it so when you squeeze it it switches spaces. The only problem is now when I’m at home I squeeze my mouse to switch my KDE desktops, and it doesn’t work. One of these days I’m going to crush the mouse in my hand, and shards of plastic is going to rip into my skin hindering my ability to type for life.

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