Two years ago on Knightwise.com
Yesterday afternoon proved to be a fun episode in the week. Driving from work to school i stopped at a local Car wash not far from Geel. I had seen these dudes before , 4 or 5 whacky guyz that wash your car for 15 euro's (inside and outside ! ! ) As you know I'm lazy , and the 307SW was not the modern example of a clean car (Soot and salt and dirt all over). So i pulled over and decided let these guyz do their worst. And Damn, they where GOOD ! 'Just like new !' the guy calls out to me. And after ripping into the car like 5 Borgs on speed go at a starfleet shuttlecraft I barely recognized the 307. It was spot clean ! Its like driving a whole new car ! I mentioned the blogg, pulled out my digital camera and made the picture you see above. They where Super friendly these guys and I recommend everybody to stop on by and have these guys attack your dirty ride !
After that it was of to Leuven. Took my lunch break on the stairs of the square next to the Tiensevest and with the soothing sounds of www.spacemusic.nl I checked out the fine looking female students and in general watched the world go by. After tinkering with another podcast-experiment it was of to school.
Got home pretty early that night to find Saskia still up 🙂 We went to bed early and ended up chatting and teasing each other. ( According to Saskia , people might think that I am gay because i'm a 'real man' and no silly macho) I've been pondering that statement for a few hours now .. but am not getting any wiser (no comments on this Mr Swift , just shut up) But Saskia did mean it as a compliment.. so.. there you go.
The whole ASTRA debacle is over, I ordered my company car today.. and let you know what it is real soon .. its a surprise.
Last but not least : Got elected for the I-city project in Hasselt (more about that soon) and found a feed script that might just do the trick and parse this blog into the knightwise.com site.
Timewarp time people ! I dug this video up out of the archives of the Dynamic Sound Control Sound & light production archives. The year is 1993 and this is previously unreleased footage of the DYSC Crew at their first preformance in the Basements of the castle of Alden Biesen. If you look closely you"ll see me as one of the DJ's, my older brother as the bartender and many funny characters. Sorry for the poor quality but it was shot over 14 years ago with poor lighting and a bulky vhs camera. Stay tuned for some more blast to the past video's from the ancient archives. If you want some more pictures from that time check out our "DYSC FLASHBACK FOTOSET " on Flickr. Watch the fullscreen video HERE. (somehow i can't get this Google Video Crap to play fullscreen)
The biggest complaints you here from geeks and advanced geeks are mostly related to end users. The low-brow Neanderthals of the cyberworld who populate a fairly large part of the digital foodchain. The bottom half that is. The ones who own a computer but don"t really know how it works. Who dabble around msn.com and believe it to be the allmighty start of the internet. For whom a Nigerian 104 scam seems true. The fodder for spammers, botnets and most of all the source of painfully simple or painfully complex questions. The ones who see top level geeks like either half-gods or commodities. The ones who barely dip their toe into the digital swimming pool we call cyberspace. Most geeks pull up their noses in disgust when a newbie like that steps up to them. Or they try desperately to help the "end-user" with his impossible questions. (mostly lacking the information required for us to solve or understand the problem) Yet they are abundant.
A few weeks ago, after endless coaching, prodding, teasing and luring .. I managed to create ANOTHER end user. My beloved uncle and aunt. Now a quick sidenote. My Uncle and my aunt (together with my grandmother) raised me for the biggest part of my life. And did so in a very special way. For one : They have a ton .. a TON of books. They are information hungry and love to delve into the depths of knowledge, yet are humble and never boast their intellect at others. But being raised by them as a kid .. "learning" and "knowledge" where paramount. For example : Where other kids read cartoons and watched crap on TV, my uncle used to sit with me on the couch with this big-ass atlas. He showed me maps of far away countries and told me what it was like there. We made imaginary voyages with the tip of our finger from Belgium to far away India by sliding over eastern Europe, Siberia and more while my uncle told me tales about the animals that lived there, the mountains, the snow and so forth.
My aunt with a big musical interest exposed my to all kinds of music. Playing it from an impressive record collection she exposed me to clarinet music, classical music, audio stories and cabaret. My Grandmother used to watch German school-tv with me, resulting in the fact that by the age of SIX i was able to speak a fair bit of German. So you see.. It was an ocean of knowledge I grew up in.
Now it was time to do something back, to expose my beloved aunt and uncle to the miracles of the internet. I had talked about it , showed them examples and made serious propaganda for the net. Highly conservative as they are the where a little hesitant but to my great pleasure they called me up a few weeks ago telling me to "go ahead and do the internet thin" for them.
So a week later they had their second hand laptop and a wifi broadband connection set up. I slowly eased them into the world of the net giving them an XP environment ( No Linux this time, cause I wanted them to learn in a standardised enviroment for whom their where plenty of books available so they could gather information at their own pace) It was wonderful to just sit there and explain. Although their questions where sometimes painfully simple to us, it was no problem for me to answer them patiently. After all these years I could give something back to them. Open up a whole new world to them and see them in awe and the endless pool of information that is so obvious to us every day.
But my greatest joy is seeing their interest, seeing my conservative aunt (who said : no computers for me) do her first Google search on her own. Seeing my uncle beam with pride as he enters his first url he saw in a paper somewhere and find this website about Kortrijk. And most importantly : Watching them grow ! Seeing them read through the books about windows they got, tentatively trying everything out one by one. .. and their joy and pride when they succeed.
They reminded me of the joy of technology. About how we take the net and all its extentions for granted. Bitch about it , complain, or even nag. Yet to them it is a wonderful new world. It reminded me of just how lucky we are to be a geek, and of how we should stop and contemplate the shear miracle that is the information age.
Pictures : Top : My aunt, Bottom : My uncle (the one in the middle)
Damn, It looks like it is (once again) beginning to be a computer-packed week full of stuff to do and problems to solve. What I thought to be another week of semi-downtime when it comes to the silicon side, is turning into another binary bitstorm that never keeps me far away from the keyboard. Visitor numbers on Knightwise.com are up (somehow the MSN messenger story is pulling a lot of interest) but I have an inkling that this could be related to porn-surfers gone astray. Since I put myself on Twitter yesterday I have had a steady amount of friends adding me to their list. I must however disappoint them that I have not had a lot of time to post on Twitter cause I haven't been around a (twitter friendly) computer. Yesterday I did however find (thanx to Dave) an IM client for my Treo that hopefully will be able to fix that. That way I can post from my Treo. But enough banter, on with the story.
I wrote about this Old G3 Bondy blue Mac that I have some time ago. I got it as a present and when I got it, it was not working anymore. I fixed the power supply and got it up and running, only to find out that, even with maxing out the ram to 512 meg, I could not run OSX on it. Even with the expert help of Tuke, my local Mac Guru we could not get the tiger into the Mac. What to do ? Well , there is always Linux ! Tried Yellow Dog linux, but did not care for that much, but when I saw the server version of Ubuntu being available for the PPC I just had to try it. Installing it was a breeze and before I knew I had an entire LAMP server up and running on the machine. With Apache, Mysql and PHP at the tip of my fingers (and saving me a LOT of manual configuration work) the little bugger was a nice addition to the pack and offered to be a great test server. I even installed XFCE on it using the simple command found at ubuntuguide.org. Before I knew it i had a pretty functional super light ultra pretty mail/internet computer that had severpower under the hood.
So Sunday, as me and Captain Command Line where chatting away on Skype, I asked him about TORRENTFLUX which is a web-based bittorrent client that you can run on an old Linux box. What it is is a full fledged bittorrent client, but instead of being a client that runs on a graphical interface (like azereus runs on gnome, kde or windows) Torrentflux is a web based interface that uses APACHE and MYPHP to do its thing. So I popped port 80 and port 22 to open to the server and asked Captain Command line if he could help me out. Pretty soon I heard the little machine rattle and roll as the SSH tunnel from Hull to Hasselt did its thing. (coming to think of it , its quite amazing actually). Being the genius that he is, he managed to pull it of in about 15 minutes (it would have taken me at least an hour). So i took my webbrowser to the IP of my little G3 and was amazed to see Torrentflux waiting for me. I logged in (of course there has to be some security) and could choose to either upload my own torrentseed, enter the url of a seed (one on publicdomaintorrents.com for example) or use the build in torrent-search engine to look for content that I needed. When the seed was ready all I had to do is start the torrent and torrentflux would start downloading the seed to the G3. Even more cool is that you can download the file you just "pulled in" using bittorrent with a web interface. So just surf over to Torrentflux, click on the link of the completed file, download it to your local machine and (via the web interface) delete it on the machine.
For me it was a perfect solution. This is a "server functionality" that I love ! There is a lot of legal content being spread via bittorrent and instead of having a computer on with a torrent client all the time, i can now rely on my G3 and Torrentflux to rattle away as I give the order. From anywhere in the world ! Using just a browser. So together with my Email, my PVR – programming software and my website software.. my entire bittorrent needs have been met using just a browser ! Fan Tas Tic !
Here is a nice how to