July 2005

Look ma, I’m growing up and everything!

My new furniture came today! The guys moving it into my apartment were not at all happy, due to these being very heavy and the fact that I live on the second floor. Ah well. That’s their job.

So I have a new entertainment center (actually, I’ve had that for a few weeks now), a reclining couch, and a reclining rocking chair. I really didn’t remember that the couch was a reclining couch. I guess I just forgot.

The new setup is quite nice. My old futon has moved to the office room, and these have dominated the living room. They’re fairly comfy, but they need to be worn in just a bit.

Ignore the cables everywhere. I’m still getting it all put together. I need to make some cables to run the rear speakers and everything else cleanly to the subwoofer and stick that on the side. I also need to figure out the LCD monitor. In time..

Stargate SG-1 Season Premier

Wow. The Stargate SG-1 season premier was on. It was… wow.. that was bad. I think I’m just going to sit in a corner and sob lightly for a while. I don’t think it could have been worse if they tried. They destroyed SG-1. Hopefully some good effort will be put on Atlantis. I guess I get to take SG-1 off my Tivo now 🙁

libsexy, mmmmm

I just put out a release of libsexy and the new GTKMM bindings, libsexymm (pronounced “libsexy, mmmmmmmmm”). The files will probably move at some point, but for now, they’re available here.

I moved GalagoGtkIconEntry into libsexy, and renamed it SexyIconEntry. Also, SexyUrlLabel has been fixed up to allow for hyperlinks that span multiple lines. Thanks to everyone who pushed me in the right direction there. It’s also been optimized a little.

This is not a stable library. I imagine I’ll break things without soname bumps right away, but maybe not. Who knows? This is just a fun library, but useful.

Obligatory screenshots follow.



Beagle with Galago support

The release of Beagle 0.0.12 rocks. Among the many reasons is support for Galago, provided by Lukas Lipka. This just kicks ass. Simple, informative, useful integration that doesn’t get in your way. Now if some other IM clients will step up and provide at least optional support for Galago, non-Gaim users will be able to get this functionality as well.

Beagle with Galago support

Headline: “Victim Dead In Apparent Caltrain Suicide”

As we were getting ready in the morning for a day of furniture shopping, Jamie noticed that the train across the street came to a hault. Not long after, I heard sirens and looked outside the window to see some ambulances and fire trucks rush by. I noticed that the sirens stopped as they got off right by here. That’s when I noticed that the train wasn’t moving. I shuddered and said that something bad just happened.

We counted I believe 9 police cars. We could see the train, could see people on the train, but still had no idea what had happened. The train was there about an hour before we left. I knew it couldn’t have been something as simple as someone who needed medical attention. With all those police guarding the tracks and an hour-long stopped train, it was obvious that it was something more.

So I finally checked the local news, and saw this, courtesy of PaloAltoCaNews.com (article) :

PALO ALTO, CA – A person apparently committed suicide this morning by standing in front of a Caltrain train in Palo Alto, Caltrain spokeswoman Jayme Maltbie Kunz reported.

The incident occurred around 10 a.m. one quarter-mile north of the East Meadows Crossing in Palo Alto, Palo Alto Battalion Chief Niles Broussard reported.

This man committed suicide just across the street from my apartment, while my girlfriend watched. She couldn’t see it happen, fortunately, as there were trees there. It probably would have scarred her, I’m afraid.. Man, creepy stuff. I don’t feel at all comfortable knowing a guy killed himself by train right across the street from my apartment. *shudder*

Be afraid, be very afraid

There’s so much fear lately. This isn’t really new, but I’ve been hit by it twice in the past few days. The problem is that with fear comes distrust, and with distrust comes mistreatment.

During a very fun vacation at Disneyland (which I shall blog about later), my girlfriend lost her wallet, which contained her ID. She was going to take Amtrak back home from my place, but of course, you need a photo ID to get on the train or on the buses. This wasn’t that much of a surprise, I guess, but we started wondering what would happen if a person got mugged far from home and needed to find a way back — plane, bus, or train. Without ID, you’re stuck! I called up Amtrak and explained the situation, and asked if there were any options. Nope. The guy on the phone said that “with all the terrorist attacks in the United States nowadays,” photo ID is required.

I’ve heard this from others too. People are under this impression that we’re under seige 24 hours every day. I guess that’s what they’re supposed to think, given how the news depicts things, and our wonderful “You’re in danger!” color system.

“Terrorist” has become a catch-all phrase. If we still had a major threat of pirates (the sea kind, not the software and media kind), we would probably be calling them aquaterrorists.

The second incident was today when, after a very long day full of typical crappy Monday things (it’s surrogate Monday, due to Monday being a holiday), I decided to go to Fry’s to pick up a few things. Now, I ended up walking home today from work, and I keep my laptop in a backpack, so I entered Fry’s with the backpack on. I didn’t really think about it at the time, though. One of the employees stopped me as I was walking through one of the aisles, which is to be expected. They’re of course worried about someone stealing something. What I was upset about was how they treated me. I ended up in the middle of the front of the store, where everybody was walking through. They looked in my backpack and had me take out my laptop and show it to them.

I wasn’t too upset at this point, but then another employee came by and, with a less than friendly tone of voice, demanded to know what I was doing in Fry’s with a laptop. I explained that I had just walked in from work and stopped there on my way home. His response was “uhh huhh..” in that “Yeah, right” tone. He told me he’ll need to take the backpack. I asked where it’s going to be put, and they said “somewhere safe.” I asked where. He repeated himself: “Somewhere safe.” I asked where again. He finally told me that it’ll be behind the counter. I said, “The laptop is expensive and it’s my primary work computer. I want to make sure it’ll be taken care of.” He got a bit agitated at this point.

So, they stuck the backpack right behind the counter, where really, anybody could get it. I walked around for a few minutes and decided not to bother giving them my money today. When I went to pick up my backpack, the second guy gave me this look like, “Yeah, knew you’d be back so soon.” I picked up the backpack and left. The way they handled it was just embarrassing. Pulling me off to the side and talking to me like I was a person, rather than talking loudly and accusingly in the middle of a crowd, would have been fine. I’m now making those purchases at newegg. Fry’s lost a sale because two of their employees couldn’t treat me civily.

Fear is natural, and everybody fears something. The problem is when people let fear control what they assume of a certain person or class of people. And that’s something that’s now all too common in this day of “Don’t cross the street alone, the terrorists will run you over in their car.”

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