John's Musings

6/30/2005

iTunes

Filed under: General — John @ 7:06 pm

I installed the newest version of iTunes for grins. I had hear it was offering podcast support. On a whim I did a search and sure enough my friend Kris’ podcast “Croncast” shows up. It shows up alright, actually it shows up two times. One with the explicit tag, and one with out. I know he isn’t putting out two shows so I’m just curious as to where Apple pulls their data from for their podcast data.

6/27/2005

More Office 2003 Research pane fame

Filed under: General,Work Stories — John @ 10:19 am

It seems the Research pane addin is really much more popular that I ever imagined. It was mentioned in a nice article at “Library Science Pad“. It also looks like I may have stolen a little thunder from OCLC with the release of it. They were / are apparently working on the same thing. It seems they want to charge for it. Once I get the code posted on sourceforge, I think there are enough people in the library world to allow this project to far excede what any one company can provide. Perhaps thats just me.

6/25/2005

Nice fix for MSI issues

Filed under: General,Tips / Tricks — John @ 5:37 pm

This wekend I was working on a computer that contained some viruses and a trojan. It seems at some point during the reign of the nastys they damaged the norton antivirus on the computer. This is a common thing and I’ve seen it more times than I can count. I was able to remove the viruses, and spyware quite nicely w/o needing to reimage the system. I installed all teh windows updates and all the updates for every program on the system and tehn went to re-install norton. I ran the installer and it when thoguh its 1st few questions and all seemed normal… When it got to the meat of the install I recieved an error saying “This MSI must be launched from setup”. This of course made no sense as the MSI WAS being run from setup. After a little googling I discovered this happens and Norton’s site had the fix. The fix involves using a tool I had not heard of that works WONDERS on MSI install problems.
There have been times int eh past where I resorted to manual registry editing to force MSI’s to think they had not been installed before but this puppy looks like it will take all the work out of it. Thank you Microsoft!

6/24/2005

More publicity

Filed under: General — John @ 7:33 am

Here is another site that mentioned the Firefox plugin and the Office research tool. I noticed last night for some reason the server wasn’t giving the right mime type out on the downloads. I fixed it this morning but to all the users of IE they only got a page of garbage. I never noticed it becasue Firefox was smart enough to figure it out on its own. In a way I like that it did, but on the other hand it seems then that Firefox is making assumptions on its own about content and not really conforming to the server.

6/23/2005

A death knell to Bristol?

Filed under: General,Renaissance — John @ 5:54 pm

Call me paranoid…
Hey I heard that…
I just have to wonder if the Supreme court’s new descision regarding seizure of private property by local government will affect Bristol. I jsut can’t help but wonder if the local government won’t use this ruling as a way to evect Bristol and “revitalize” the area around it. Can you say subdivision, and yet another useless stripmall?

6/22/2005

A real turn on…

Filed under: General,The Duh! File,Work Stories — John @ 3:36 pm

Today I get a call from a co-worker, and they are having troubles with a software package. I decded to remote control them to make it easier as I have had calls from this person before. After waiting to connect with no luck the person pipes up from the other end of the phone. “Oh, do you need the computer turned on?”

I can’t make this stuff up folks.. and even if I could, it woudln’t be as funny…

More mention

Filed under: General,Work Stories — John @ 11:31 am

I just noticed the SOAP / Z39.50 search tool was mentioned on another site.

I guess this is my 15 minutes of fame. Who woudl have thoguht I’d ever make any kind of a splash in the Library world… :-D

6/21/2005

Office 2003

Filed under: General,Work Stories — John @ 5:54 pm

Today the news of my work with Office 2003, SOAP, XML, and Z39.50 hit the library world by way of “The Shifted Librarian“. I decided to setup a project on Sourceforge and see if others will contribute to the code and see if we can’t just make this project work for every catalog out there. I really think it has potential.

6/18/2005

Batman Begins – No spoilers

Filed under: General — John @ 11:52 pm

starstarstarstarstar(5) out of (5) starstarstarstarstar
I just returned from Batman Begins and all I can say is WOW! Ok, perhaps I can say more, like BRAVO! and ENCORE! and DUDE THAT ROCKED! Seriously though I honestly came away from this movie feeling like I got my money’s worth. That hasn’t really happened since Lord of the Rings. I will definitly be going back to see it again. I’m sure all the Batman purists out there can probably pick it to pieces for continuity but really… leave it alone it. Let it stand on it’s own and you will have to agree it was really quite good. This movie performs a much needed Reset button on the whole franchise and I honestly hope that others are made along these same lines. Major kudos to the whole creative team and I hope they come together again for a sequel.
Gone are the campy cartoonish sets and nonsensical looks to the film as seen in the previous few Batman movies. This movie brings things back to the gritty seedy underbelly of Gothem where the Batman story really thrives. Being a Chicago suburbanite I have to admit I loved being able to pick out parts of Chicago, and it didn’t really detract from the belief in the movies version of Gothem city. I didn’t stay for the credits but I’m sure I will be able to find them online (yeah IMDB) becasue there are a couple characters that I’m certain I recognised from the Batman universe. (No I’m not a comic book geek or anything but I have watched more than my fair share of the various animated series)

6/17/2005

Referral Spam

Filed under: General,Tips / Tricks — John @ 11:15 pm

Well I just had a chance to go over my logs for the past few months and the spammers are at it again. As most, more alert, webmasters are no doubt aware one of the newer tactics of the evil spammers is to use whats known as referral spam. Thier hope is that a site woudl ahve their stats up and wiewable to the public, and therefore give them a better ranking in search engines by littering the innocent webhosts site with links to their spamvertised site. As soon as I saw it in my logs I knew what I shoudl do, but rather than reinvent the wheel I did some google searchign and found the most common method for dealing with this is to use the apache SetEnvIfNoCase module to match keywords on the referrer and then deny the hit. This gives them a 403 forbidden error and should cut down on the massive amounts of traffic I’ve been seeing. I hate these loosers…

One great tool I did come across to test the rule is mentioned in the following post:
http://www.daveschalkboard.com/index.php/archives/2004/07/13/wannabrowser-http-user-agent-spoofing/

It was a godsend to test my rules out. I liked it so much I even donated $5.

Protected: Today’s insanity… Plant watering

Filed under: General,The Duh! File,Work Stories — John @ 9:14 am

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6/16/2005

Purity

Filed under: General,Renaissance — John @ 7:51 pm

My goodnes, has it really been well over a month since I posted anything on here… Hmm well I’ll probably go back and post some thigns retrospectivly about the past few weekends… but I just took the Renaissance faire purity test again. (I do about once a year…) and wow it seems I’ve been corrupted even more this past year…

Here is the result of your Renaissance Purity Test.
You answered “yes” to 116 of 152 questions, making you 23.7% FaireFolk pure (76.3% FaireFolk corrupt).
According to the scoring guide, your renaissance experience level is: A RenRat

6/14/2005

Protected: Aliens abducted my icon…

Filed under: General,Work Stories — John @ 8:02 pm

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6/12/2005

Protected: The grill man cometh…

Filed under: General,It's all relative — John @ 8:15 pm

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6/11/2005

Camping

Filed under: General — John @ 4:30 pm

I’m leaving in just a few minutes to go camping for Chris and Mollys engagement party. It should be a very relaxing time I think. I’ll be up in Bong Recreation area in WI with Chris and Molly and anyone else that shows up. Karl and Gabby are supposed to be there tonight. I have a feeling there wont be to many others because of the heat, but oh well there’s more privacy that way. I managed to forget the cooler, so I’ll have to get one on the road. I also can’t seem to find my sleeping bag since I can back from St Louis. Karl says it was on the diningroom table, which is where I remember it beign too. I left it there so I wouldn’t forget to put it in the car… I’m guessing its been packed away at home , mistaken for Micheals… Oh well as hot as it is I doubt I really will need it. Oh I also forgot the supersoakers on the kitchen table… It just wasn’t a good morning to pack.

6/10/2005

Protected: Picnic table on the sun…

Filed under: General,It's all relative — John @ 8:10 pm

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6/5/2005

4 of 1 – Used carriage saleman

Filed under: General,Music,Renaissance — John @ 11:35 pm

AHHHH WOW! What a weeekend. Well I really enjoyed playing 4 of 1 for Seelie Court this weekend. I managed to sell somwhere around 15 CD’s for them… Then there were 6 for Elvendrums, 3 for 3 pints gone, 1 for Vince Connaway, and 1 for ShantyMan & Bonnie Lass… Not bad for my first attempt I guess. I think my 4 of 1 personality was a used carrage salesman in a former life. :-D

Anyway my favorite sale involved a member of the nobility. She was sitteing enjoying a show when her dane family arrived to se her in all her glory. Wel during the happy visit with Mom, Grandma and Dad I took the opportunity to work my way into the mix. While the daughter was talkign to Grandma I pulled Mom aside. “You know, she has been sitting here enjoying the show all afternoon… What better way to give her a great memory of the weekend than to buy her a CD”.
Mom: “HEY THATS A GREAT IDEA!!! How Much are they?”
Me: “Only $15, not a bad price for a daughters love…”
The mother happily handed over the cash and recieved her new present.
Mom (to Daughter): “Here Honey, I got you this!”
Daughter: “WOW MOM!!! I LOVE THEM!!!!! THANKS!!!!”
Me: “Psssst they have 5 more CD’s you might want some on hand in case of any future arguments…”

She didn’t hear me and I wasn’t goign to press the issue, there were more peopel to sell to. :-)

Oh I did order one patron to buy a Seelie Court pin… “You have been to all the shows today… Buy this pin!”
patron (rummaging thogh wallet): “How much?”
me: $3, or for the low low price of $18 I’ll thgouh in any CD of your choosing :-)
Jon Baade: “Heck if he buys a cd give him the pin”
Patron: “I only have $5″
Me: “Congrats on your new pin!”
he took the pin and imediatly put it on
Jon to me: Dude you jsut orderd him to buy a pin….
me: Yeah, so? It worked didn’t it?
Jon: Dude that rocks!!!

Ahhhhhh 4 of 1 is evil… At least thats my story and I’m sticking to it.

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