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Last update: 28 Mar 2009 -- 4:31pm
Ephemera
     Saturday
    28 Mar 2009
    A great Spring day at Craig's place.

     Sunday
    22 Mar 2009
    I just got a huge kick out of this.

     Monday
    9 Mar 2009
    Hell, damnation, blast, woe, anger, and hate. And if Stephen Fry were here he'd throw in a thrice-damned arse. Comcast has blocked inbound port 25 to foamtotem.org. Which means that I can't receive email via SMTP. Which means Foam Totem gets no email.

    It is true that port 25 outbound should likely be blocked for client accounts. It's unauthenticated and easy to spam that way. Instead, you use port 587 for message submissions (it's authenticated and specifically for injecting messages into the email 'verse).

    Blocking inbound ports doesn't do anything, unless those ports are hooked up to bad software. Examples of good things to block happen to be things that Microsoft wrote: SMB (file system) and SQL Server.

    I can't think of any good reason to block inbound 25, though. Sigh. Security Theater has now jumped from the TSA to my ISP.

    For now, I have all foamtotem mail being bounced to another externally accessible account. If the apocalypse is upon us (and it really seems like it is) then I'll end up using fetchmail I guess. I can't bring myself to get a "commercial account" which is exactly the same except for the price and what ports aren't blocked.

     Sunday
    8 Mar 2009
    For future reference when I look back on these old posts: the financial crisis is downright frightening. I feel like every proposed method of "fixing" or "restructuring" or whatever the new term is for fiddling while Rome burns has me lose and the financial industry win. I have no confidence that pumping more money in will help at all without other major changes. Changes that we seem incapable of making.

    The federal government is afraid "nationalize" the banks, even temporarily. Disappointing, in my mind. It's the only thing I've heard which means that the citizenry at large gets something out of the money being pumped from their pockets.

    Instead, the money is a gift to those who are provably untrustworthy. Our largess allows them to keep their industry in a largely unchanged state. Now that's a gig I'd like: get a lot of money, make questionable bets with it, give gigantic bonuses and paychecks to myself, lose the bets, and have those debts paid off by a rich uncle who is so stupid that he leaves his checkbook with me.

    Enough strained metaphor. I hear from Krugman and The Baseline Scenario that we need to dump much, much more money in to actually sort it all out. I believe them (because the current bail out still overvalues a lot of this paper). And, like I said before, I can handle that. But I want to feel like I'm not just mailing envelopes packed with cash to those who caused the problem. I want to see something substantive for my investment.

    (A secondary set of panic-inducing thoughts revolve around what's going to happen to the money I actually saved. Is it actually safe in my bank?)

     Friday
    6 Mar 2009
    Watchmen (IMDB 8.5 | Rot 65% | Netflix 4.4)
    The long-awaited adaptation of the famous 80s comic is finally released. And it's good. Purists will take umbrage at several things in Watchmen. There are nuances of the various characters which are different in the movie than they are in the comic. And, as is well known, there is no giant squid monster at the end. These purists should shut up.

    On its own, it's stands well. Most superficially, it's a whodunnit. There's a whole lot more going on, though. It's also a dark and grim exploration of the ends justifying the means. And the purpose of justice. And why or if people should really care about this stuff.

    Just as Watchmen isn't really a superhero comic, this isn't a superhero movie. Sure it's got capes and fight scenes, but the gray areas it explores keep it from being your typical good guy-bad guy story. It's gory and brutal at times. Expect character flaws. Choices aren't always entirely right or wrong. Endings aren't always entirely happy or sad.

    Oh: And expect a glowing blue wang in good many scenes.

     Monday
    2 Mar 2009
    Pictures from my trip to Telluride

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    Pictures of Max - rv's photos - popplers - Snuffy's photos