MavEtJu's Distorted View of the World - 2009-07

July 2009 was a strange month
Huawei E169 on 7-STABLE
Laptop is broken...
STS-127 and 3G
Walking through the Royal National Park from Otford to Bundeena

Back to index

July 2009 was a strange month

Posted on 2009-07-31 06:00:00
Tags: Rant

July 2009 has been an expensive month. We had lots of (unexplained) items broken or malfunctioning. Here is a subset of them:

  • Naomis mobile phone got lost at a shopping center. And returned two days later.
  • Naomis mobile phone fell into the toilet. It's now only giving the startup logo and then goes black.
  • My mobile phone is showing a little digit two at the top right and isn't able to make outgoing calls anymore. Incoming calls and SMS still work!
  • My wireless access-point has broken down, no output on the serial port anymore.
  • My debit-card got blocked and I didn't notice it until a Friday evening after the banks had closed so I didn't have money until Monday!
  • Naomis credit-card got blocked because one of the payments got compromised and she was issued a new one. The bank couldn't tell us where it happened so we do have no idea who to avoid :-)
  • The car got a nice scar from the frontdoor to the petrol-tank, a similar one you get when you open a tin with a mall-functioning tin-opener.
  • My Sony VAIO laptop is behaving strangely with random hangs in X. First I thought it the upgrade to FreeBSD 7-STABLE went wrong, but after further upgrades to 8-BETA2 they show up. It seems to be related to X which kind of indicates a problem with the video-card.
  • And this morning the powerlight on my ADSL modem went from bright green to a dimly lit green and the ethernet light hasn't come up anymore neither.

The good news: We are all still healthy!

No comments | Share on Facebook | Share on Twitter

Huawei E169 on 7-STABLE

Posted on 2009-07-27 20:00:00
Tags: FreeBSD, Huawei E169

Two weeks ago I moved on my laptop from 7.2 BETA2 (SVN revision r191457) from 7-STABLE (SVN revision r195649). Why? Just because I thought I could...

it wasn't the worlds best upgrade I have had. Yes, everything still worked, like X, my network, the ports etc. Except that when using the Huawei E169 3G modem everything hang now and then. Not everything, just the keyboard (network and mouse still worked, so killing X and restarting it was possible if you could access it), but it was enough to have to make the laptop to shut down and to have do an fsck on it. And doing that on the train early in the morning is not my idea of a good time.

I remembered that Peter Jeremy had the same issue earlier after I wrote up the first stories about the E169 and his solution was to upgrade to CURRENT. Yech, that isn't something I want to do on my daily machine. So for two weeks I kind of worked without a network on the train until I finally had enough of it and installed CURRENT on the laptop. And it came up as 8.0 BETA2 (SVN revision 195900).

And I just my first trip on the train with a network again and without having to run fsck during the trip!

No comments | Share on Facebook | Share on Twitter

Laptop is broken...

Posted on 2009-07-19 12:00:00, modified on 2009-07-27 20:00:00
Tags: My Computers

The category should be "unhappiness" to be honest... My Sony Vaio laptop is broken... Don't know what is wrong with it, but it doesn't power up the screen. The LED for the harddisk flashes for a second, but that is all...

Tonight I'm going to get a screwdriver and void some warrantee... Wish me luck!

Update: After putting back in 20 odd screws, the screen is working again!

Show comment | Share on Facebook | Share on Twitter

STS-127 and 3G

Posted on 2009-07-11 11:00:00
Tags: Space, 3G

I'm in a inside childrens playground in Nowra (2 hours south of where we live) and while Dirkie is experimenting with slides and friction and Hanorah is trying to put matching blocks together, thanks to the powers of 3G and a laptop I can still can do some of the things I want to do (Which isn't writing weblog entries :-)

Right now I'm streaming the pre-launch video of the launch of the STS-127 Space Shuttle mission. According to the e169-stats program, it downloads about 600 kilobytes per minute. Per hour that is 36 megabytes. Per day that is 864 megabytes. With less than 24 hours to go for the scheduled launch tomorrow at 09:36 AM Sydney time (we're playing the waiting game now), this will cost me less than 1/5th of my monthly total. If I would leave it on for the next 24 hours that is.

Right now the video is the Space Shuttle on the launchpad with not much happening - Now and then a bird flies by, somebody walks in front of a light etc. It must be very cheap MPEG encoding: Just send one full frame and nearly zero-length update frames.

Yay go STS-127!

No comments | Share on Facebook | Share on Twitter

Walking through the Royal National Park from Otford to Bundeena

Posted on 2009-07-06 11:00:00, modified on 2009-07-11 13:00:00
Tags: Walking, Adventures

Last weekend the Sutherland Greens organised a weekend bushwalk through the Royal National Park from Otford to Bundeena. Since Naomi was too busy with real life, I volunteered to go in her place together with little Dirk.

At this point in time Dirkie is four years and three months old and there were a lot of reservations from the other walkers of him (and his mother) being able to do the trip, but since I volunteered to carry him where needed they agreed on it.

The Google maps link above doesn't show it, but the trip was going through the bush past the coast: Sometimes walking tracks and sometimes the path the water takes when it flows down the hills. As the crow flies only 23 kilometers, but it includes a lot of up and down between the top of the cliffs and the sand of the beaches.

The first day was about 10 kilometers, starting at 10:30 and finishing at Gary beach at 15:30. We had some great views over the water, lots of different terrain from a nice walking track to "let's walk upstream through this water to see if we can find the track again", saw the sheds build during the depression at Burning Palm beach where one of the current owners told us the story of the families living in one of them. Dirkie walked for about three-quarters of the time and spend the other time on my shoulders. At night we slept at the Gary Beach Surf Club and saw the ISS passing over in the twilight period.

The second day was up and down again with much less signs of civilisation (houses, sheds) but we had a nice over the National Park from one point, saw a lot of whales on their migration to the warmer waters in the north and had a great time. This time Dirkie walked about two-thirds of time and just like the day before when I was really sure I wouldn't make it over a next hill again we were at the end!

Neither day we saw a lot of animals, not kangeroos, no big birds. Just whales and two sea eagles... I had hoped for more cockatoos though.

Beautiful walk, recommendable for anybody who is up for it (I didn't do any special training for it, just my four kilometers walk per day (yes it's sad))

No comments | Share on Facebook | Share on Twitter