Just finished packaging the newest version of Exmh for Debian: most of my debianism-patches were accepted upstream, pretty nice. Upload done, the package should become available in a few hours.

This release speeds up things considerably; 2.6 and 2.7.0 had suffered badly from a crawling flist and sequences implementation. 2.7.2 finally takes care of that issue and seems to work fine here (I did pull in a few patches from CVS when minor problem reports popped up just after the release).

Only tweak I had to make relates to Edit_Done which now expects a third (dummy) argument. In my setup (don't ask, here be tentacles) emacs's mh-e lisp code handles composing emails and MIME and then tells exmh to send the resulting thing (by forcefeeding a "send exmh Edit_Done..." command to wish cough via cough echo coughcough and a UCHHHU shell pipe. Protecting the required "{}" arg from emacs and the shell was less than elegant, but stinking wish only runs commands coming from files, not the command line). All this is so that exmh can do the nifty annotation stuff but cannot commit any MIME mutilations (as mhn sucks plenty). Do you really want to know more? I don't think so.

[ published on Tue 25.01.2005 23:21 | filed in brainfarts | ]

sagt die Bayreuther Polizei. Gut so, das wär ja noch schöner! Meine Hochachtung für den Scheiße-verzierer; viel stinkige Arbeit aber eine schöne Idee.
Link zu einem von vielen Artikeln

[ published on Sat 22.01.2005 22:50 | filed in interests/humour | ]

Or is it just the ones who do movies? I really adore Finnish movies, they're all barking mad, sick and gaga. Just the right thing for me.

This film was no different: just saw Raid on SBS, and absolutely loved it. Great humour, dark and nasty at times, superb dialogue (even without grokking Finnish, subtitles do work here), just terriffic! Felt a bit like a more modern Kottan.

[ published on Sat 22.01.2005 00:02 | filed in brainfarts | ]

Yesterday the new semester started, with me teaching Computer Security. As always in the first lecture I wore my special shirt, see below.


Got the usual appreciating grins from people, fellow staff congratulating me on my wacky collection of shirts etc.

The lecture went well, didn't scare off too many students & may have even kept them interested a bit.

But today the first lab was way less than shiny. I had prepared nicely, exercises for them to try ready and so forth, but just about everything went pear-shaped. The main proxy didn't want to spit out one of the texts I wanted to use mainly, had to invent a storyline from scratch and lost my thread of thought a bit at times.

Which is very bad for this particular lab as it's supposed to be a Unix survival session for those students without prior experience in Unixy matters...and $deity knows there's more than enough Unixish stuff I could tell them if we had time, but instead I have to cram exactly the items of utmost vital importance in this single 2hr session.

Likely concentrating on working on a paper submission related to my PhD project in the hours before the lab wasn't that good an idea...got me on a totally different track and captured me quite a bit (especially as work was flowing, which is rare for me when cobbling together academic paper things...doing stuff I like, bug braggi^Wwriting papers about it...). And this paper must be submitted by friday (and I should do a second related one also by friday - learned of the submission deadline for this conference on monday....). This Sucks.

So I was less than lucid in that lab. I hate it when I don't deliver quality. Bugger!

[ published on Wed 19.01.2005 21:58 | filed in still-not-king | ]

I started paragliding in late December 2001, and at first didn't really get a lot of airtime unfortunately.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Tue 18.01.2005 22:15 | filed in interests/flying | ]

And I felt reminded of that dislike when I helped rho and Anitta do some new cables in their house last year.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Mon 17.01.2005 22:10 | filed in brainfarts | ]

...lousy chlorine taste of the Gold Coast water. The Hinze Dam is just not on par with the Eastern Austrian Alps where Vienna gets its water from.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Mon 17.01.2005 21:50 | filed in interests/au | ]

This is about as silly as the arguments the Content Cartel wants us to swallow.
Source: Cigarro & Cerveja

[ published on Sat 15.01.2005 20:42 | filed in interests/humour | ]

Googling for "Abu Ghraib" images returns only whitewashed crap, whereas Yahoo has the evidence in full gory beauty.

Adding "abuse" or "torture" as keywords brings forth more precise stuff at Yahoo, but zip improvement at Google.

No way Google mislaid these images accidentally. "The most comprehensive image search on the web" my ass...
Source: cursor

[ published on Fri 14.01.2005 10:49 | filed in interests/anti | ]

Now that isn't new. New are some manifestations I've been dealing with recently.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Fri 14.01.2005 00:00 | filed in brainfarts | ]

Medicare, the basic medical insurance for every citizen and permanent resident, doesn't cover dental stuff (except emergency procedures in a hospital), so it's PAYH.

Fortunately private health insurance isn't very expensive (yet), especially for higher income earners: you have the choice of paying an extra levy for Medicare for no extra benefits or you can take out private hospital cover.

For me, the extra levy would be about $650 p.a., and full-blown private insurance (not just hospital but also extras like dental, optical etc.) costs me about $900 p.a. Given the $200 I get for contact lenses every year and factoring in just one or two other doctor visits a year, my decision for private insurance was obvious.

Still, even private insurance leaves you with a gap between the benefits and the actual cost: for hospital stuff there's a safety net capping, but not for extras. So the visit to the dentist this week left me $50 poorer, still a lot better than paying $210.

It wasn't too painful (despite me being scared of dentists and their surprises) and didn't uncover any unexpected problems. I'll have two teeth taken out in a month but both were known candidates for 15 and 7 years respectively, so no real worries.

[ published on Thu 13.01.2005 23:18 | filed in interests/au | ]

"A Sampling of Mathematical Folk Humor", published by the AMS. Contains pretty cool silly things like this:

Q: Why did the chicken cross the road?
A: Fermat: It did not fit on the margin on this side.

Link to the article (PDF) (via Monochrom)

[ published on Thu 13.01.2005 22:36 | filed in interests/humour | ]

...says Terry Jones, ex-Python, in this commentary in The Guardian about why the tsunami got a lot of donations and (crappy) publicity while the Iraqis suffering a fate of similar dimensions get nothing (except more opression).

Cynic that I am, I find this not baffling at all: Drowned corpses caused by mother nature look better on screen than showing the results of American hubris. Dead soldiers can be done away by statistics, dead civilians aren't counted so they don't count, and for the veneer of a conscience let's quietly publish some acknowledgement of having no clue.

[ published on Thu 13.01.2005 11:06 | filed in interests/anti | ]

After three years of imprisonment, (quite likely) torture and certainly lots of illegal shenanigans perpetrated by the governments involved, Mr Habib is finally coming home to Oz. (Where he will be under further surveillance and subject to official harassment, despite none of the scum at the top having enough evidence for any kind of real trial...)

And all the bonsai shrub had to say is:

Mr Howard said yesterday he would not apologise or offer compensation to Mr Habib, who has spent the last three years in Guantanamo Bay for suspected terrorism and will be released within two weeks. Nor had he questioned the right of the Americans to apprehend Mr Habib in the first place.


Asked whether it was appropriate for an Australian prime minister to allow an Australian to be locked up for three years in a foreign country without proper legal rights, Mr Howard said: "I think the process took too long and we have made that known in very plain terms to the United States."

nicholsons' cartoon (cartoon by Peter Nicholson)

[ published on Thu 13.01.2005 10:53 | filed in interests/anti | ]

My father asked me to put some pictures and maps on the web, so as to show the lay of the land better. Well, stitching together panoramas by hand^Wgimp sucks so I didn't find the time to do it - until today.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Thu 13.01.2005 00:39 | filed in interests/au | ]

Danish loonies..ahem, IT people have come up with an open-source beer. True to techie form they've added Guarana to their "beer". Gah.

[ published on Wed 12.01.2005 12:28 | filed in interests | ]

The ABC broadcasts Baraka tonight. Ahh, lotsa goodness. Not that I haven't got a copy of the movie anyway, but still: always good to see the public telly stations make a good non-mainstream program decision.

Last time I saw the movie I started pestering my family for CDs of the Rustavi Choir, David Hykes and The Harmonic Choir and Keith Jarrett; two out of those three should be almost in the mail by now...

[ published on Thu 06.01.2005 22:47 | filed in brainfarts | ]

Finally, after quite a lot of to-and-fro I've managed to get a grip and book an appointment with a dentist next week. I'm sure it'll hurt - naturally more than now, which is about not at all.

Contrary to common belief, this is not a blessing: my second-to-last dentist expressed some incredulity when he quickly did a root canal treatment without anaestethic: it didn't hurt very badly. Which was good there and then, but: if I actually felt my teeth developing problems, I wouldn't have needed that treatment.

So I'm as anxious and scared of all them butchers as usual, but I'm certain that as before my usual stoicism in the face of inevitables will resurface. I'm also certain that after the body manglers are done things will stop hurting again.

Apropos new year. Oz is weird: fireworks are verboten, as in totally absolutely off-limits to the average person. Except in Canberra, home of the big gutter swi^W^Wpoliticians - where consumer fireworks are still allowed but only on the queen's birthday weekend (not that this makes any sense). The Aussies must harbour a semi-suppressed wish for somebody to blow up all the pollies in one big bang, I think.

[ published on Thu 06.01.2005 21:38 | filed in still-not-king | ]

The Stencilrevolution guys have beautiful galleries of stencils and their applications all over the planet. There's also a nice howto on how to do tshirts with stencils.

Somehow looking at such artful stuff tempts me to forget the stupid splashback tiles in the kitchen and try this: finish filling in the cracks, repaint with heavy white latex paint or similar and then do some stencilled spraying. Maybe some Escher icons on a sin() wave....or something like this?

I'm not a major fan of scribbly graffiti and tags, but the stuff presented there is mostly great art - and Banksy's rats are really cool.
More Banksy and non-banksy, both nasty and thus good:

[ published on Thu 06.01.2005 21:29 | filed in interests | ]

Rob knows a butcher somewhere on Brisbane's south side who makes Gselchtes, Kaminwurzn, Landjäger and Speck.

A small excurse for the colonials: This is "Speck". "Speck" translates to "bacon". But the "bacon" you can buy in the supermarkets around here is not Speck - and vice versa. At most they share the species of deader. Speck is fine for consumption as it is (raw but cured and smoked). "Bacon" is good for ham & eggs - at best.

Rob also transported the good stuff in a bag befitting the Austrian/German delicacy. That piece was actually a good 3kg, and cost me $53. Not bad at all, considering that it's almost as good as the one my grandmother made herself.

Apropos the nice bag, Aldi/Hofer stores finally have made it to QLD. Yay! I just checked: the closest store is at the north end of the Gold Coast. That place is called Labrador. I'm on the mid-southern end of the GC: in Miami. Whoever came up with the suburb names here was a horrible punster.

[ published on Mon 03.01.2005 22:40 | filed in interests/au | ]

Hijacking an airplane: 25 years of Special Lodging.
Beating somebody to death: 13 years.
Raping a child: 11 years.
Selling marijuana while posessing a gun: 55 years.

Welcome to the home of the brave, land of the free, bulwark of proportionate measures...

[ published on Sun 02.01.2005 14:29 | filed in brainfarts | ]

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