Category Archives: General

Perils of Moving

Diane got a job offer for the Avida-ED programmer position at Michigan State University. We’ve gone through the various things that happen in a job transition, leaving the old job, getting a sale contract on our Palmetto home and land, packing and sorting our belongings, and preparing for the move itself. I had even set… Read More »

Adventure in Email Archiving

Up until 2009, my approach to personal email relied on pretty simple tools on Unix systems. I checked and sent email using “mail” at the command-line most of the time. In the late 1990s, I wrote a Perl script that altered the checking email part of my life. With forwarding, sendmail would pass incoming email… Read More »

The Pollywogs Are Coming

It’s been rainy here in Florida. How rainy is it? Well, yesterday Diane and I were walking around the property and found that our retention pond was full. Because it was full, the area around the shop was underwater. Water was streaming across a couple of feet of the edge of the concrete pad of… Read More »

Anatomy of a Spam Comment

The new spam module for WordPress is not as aggressive in marking spam messages as its previous version. So I get to go through and mark a variety of things that are pretty obviously spam as spam. Well, today a spammer’s script misfired and sent his template for a comment rather than a processed spam… Read More »


In the past week, I’ve quit working for the Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, updated my will, had two recalled tires replaced on my truck, and otherwise worked toward clearing the decks for the job I start tomorrow. I’ll be working as an analyst for RealPage, Inc., particularly with the group based in Carrollton, Texas… Read More »

Discretion is a Corporate Bad Word

Mike Dunford of “The Questionable Authority” blog relates an on-going negative experience with United Airlines. His wife is in the US military and has 15 days of leave to meet with Mike. The 15 days began when her flight arrived from Afghanistan in the USA. However, her connecting flight on United Airlines was cancelled due… Read More »

Florida: Idiots Driving

Here’s another way the acronym “ID” could be instantiated: idiots driving. I commute to work, and yesterday morning I was on I-275 northbound coming into St. Petersburg. I was in the right-hand lane, and a Honda Odyssey was in the left-hand lane. We were traveling at just about the same speed, and had been for… Read More »

Updating the Modular CV

Some time ago, I wrote about making a modular curriculum vitae in . Since that time, I’ve had to update the contents. Things change. Colleagues request current CVs to include in grant proposals, and given the current state of public sector employment it is no bad thing to have the CV ready to go. But… Read More »

Coyne, Wallace, and Flannery

There’s a post on “PRUnderground” that takes delight in an alleged screwup by Prof. Jerry Coyne. Coyne is stated to have made a claim during a radio program about Alfred Russel Wallace: In particular, Jerry was emphatic in claiming Alfred Russel Wallace never connected biogeography to evolution: Wallace did not use biogeography as evidence of… Read More »

Losing Revenue?

Have a look at this article on the BBC site. There’s just so much wrong. The mobile telephony companies are toting up projections of profit from SMS and MMS messaging and seeing a shortfall as a “loss”. “I think it’s a growing threat which is manageable through the right tariffs and the right costing,” Mr… Read More »

Verizon FIOS Continues to Not Talk to Verizon FIOS

I have two new trouble tickets with Verizon FIOS as the connectivity situation continues to be nearly completely non-functional, as it has been since January 10th. The one entered from the Verizon Business FIOS side of things is TXP08R8CY. During the hour-and-a-half tech support conference call needed to get that one going, I happened to… Read More »

Verizon FIOS Doesn’t Talk to Verizon FIOS?

I have a bit more information about the connection difficulties I’ve been having with my ISP, Verizon FIOS. I have a residential account in Palmetto, FL with Verizon FIOS. Mostly, it works fine. I can get to a host of web sites without difficulty, and the transfer speeds are great. I do remote system administration… Read More »

Connection Issues

My connection to the servers in Texas from my home systems is unreliable. For the moment, my only reliable link to various of my web sites and my usual email is via my Android phone. Fortunately, I’m grandfathered into an unlimited data plan and have a Bluetooth keyboard. But that is still not a long-term… Read More »

The Watson Flap

There’s a row going on about continuing sexism within the skeptical community. Rebecca Watson, a speaker at an international skeptical conference, was propositioned by a male attendee… in an elevator… at 4 in the morning. She turned him down, and later used the incident in calling for better behavior out of the male skeptical community.… Read More »

Desperation at MyLife?

Years ago, I set up a MyLife profile. Periodically, I get email from them noting that my profile has been searched, and that I should pony up some money so that they will tell me who actually visited my profile. Personally, I find “upgrade” come-ons a disincentive, plus FaceBook and other social networking sites have… Read More »

End-of-the-World Playlist

Over at NPR, there was a post asking people for the song to be played during the Rapture as predicted by Harold Camping. I gave several choices in my response: For years, I’ve kept a directory of songs, just called “apoc”. Top choices that are explicitly about the end of the world out of that… Read More »

A Grete Waitz Reminiscence

Back in the early 80s, I made what living I had as a staff photographer for the Independent Florida Alligator (IFA) newspaper. One day I was assigned to go get a photo of a runner to go with a story being worked up by a reporter. I was given the appointment time and place (IIRC,… Read More »

Dolphin, Doberman, and Intentionality

MarcoIslandFlorida reports that a doberman trapped in a canal was rescued because a dolphin made “a lot of noise”, attracting human help. Just before lunch, police received a 911 call from a South Bahama resident who said she’d rescued a dog from a canal after she’d heard and seen a dolphin making a “lot of… Read More »