jc blog - tales of a modern-day nomadic hunter-gatherer

Follow jcomeau_ictx on Twitter This is the weblog of Intrepid Wanderer. You never know what you might find here; graphic descriptions of bodily functions, computer programming secrets, proselytizing for the antichrist, miscellaneous ranting and kvetching, valuable information on living off the land... if you don't share my rather weird interests you may want to try slashdot instead.

You can consider my Del.icio.us links an extension to my blog, as are my LifeTango goals and my other to-do items. My to-buy list is also public, but only for sharing any useful ideas that might be there; I'm not requesting charity, neither do I offer it.

You can find me easily in google searches, as jcomeau, jcomeau_ictx, or jcomeauictx. There are lots of other jcomeaus, but AFAIK I'm the only jcomeau_ictx out there so far.

If you want to comment on anything you see here, try the new Facebook comments, reachable by clicking the "[comment]" link at the end of each post. If for some reason that isn't working, go ahead and email me, jc.unternet.net. You know what to do with the first dot. Make the 'subject' line something reasonably intelligent-looking or it goes plunk! into the spambasket unread.

This RSS feed may or may not work. Haven't fiddled with it in forever. RSS Feed

MrCreditRepair.biz will fix your credit rating!

2019-01-19-0341Z

oh, and I'd been dithering about buying a rolling pin for months... years? anyway, I kept putting it off, and finally realized today I had plenty of cylindrical things around that would do the job: beer bottles! just had to get the labels off. so I filled one with water, put it in a pot full of water, and boiled it for a while until the label easily peeled off and I could remove the rest of the glue by scrubbing it with a washcloth. unfortunately, the bottle (from Cucapa amber) had convex ridges on it at the bottom and just below the neck, which of course I didn't realize until I'd already made the effort. but Pacifico bottles don't have that problem, so I used the same water to do the same treatment to one of those. presto! I have a quite usable rolling pin for my tortillas and pie crusts. [comment]

2019-01-19-0245Z

last night, or rather this morning, I woke up from a weird dream in which I was full of parasites, so much so that I could see various bugs and worms wriggling under my skin. I'm fairly sure this is a recurring theme in my dreams. I remember remarking in my dream how well I felt despite the presence of all these alien life forms in my body.

for dinner tonight I tried an experiment, a type of beef stroganoff using onions, garlic, machaca (shredded jerky), yogurt, and butter, along with a little black pepper and soy sauce. it was an unqualified success. I made 3 tacos and a hand pie with it, and so far the tacos alone satisfied my appetite so I still have the pie for tomorrow.

roughly, the recipe is: chop half a medium onion and two cloves of garlic and sauté in butter. add a handful of machaca, about half the volume of the onions before they shrink from cooking. add more butter to rehydrate the machaca. when the onions have lost their sting, add about two tablespoons of yogurt, season with black pepper and soy sauce or salt, and move to the edge of the comal. roll out your pie crusts and/or tortillas from the dough you made earlier in the day, and spoon the "stroganoff" onto the flour creations you made.

I made 3 tacos and a pie, and the tacos were enough to satisfy my dinner appetite, so I still have the pie for tomorrow. I'd say the experiment is an unqualified success, despite the lack of mushrooms. I might do this again and again. [comment]

2019-01-14-2134Z

well, I managed to totally destroy my firmware-mod-kit. it had been compiled on my old 32-bit system before that crazy upgrade-in-place to 64 bits last year, and after changing and recompiling some parts of it, it broke the rest, so I had to recompile everything.

then I was getting errors about major and minor being undefined. that was a known problem (thanks Stackoverflow!) and solved by:

sed  -i '/^#include <sys\/types.h>/a #include <sys/sysmacros.h>' $(find . -type f -name '*.[ch]' | xargs grep -l types.h | xargs grep -L sysmacros.h)

also, make clean from /usr/src/firmware-mod-kit didn't remove all the object files, so I had to zap them with:

rm $(find . -name '*.o' | xargs file | grep -v x86-64 | awk '{print $1}' | tr -d ':')

none of that worked, because now I get a whole bunch of errors from binwalk, such as:

/tmp/tmpols8RO, 1388: Warning: Printf format is too long for type `belong' in description `%ld,'

which, apparently, is due to an incompatibility with recent versions of libmagic. so Collake's idea of including all the sources of all the packages he used, trying to avoid the possibility of upgraded packages breaking his scripts, failed. [comment]

2019-01-10-0706Z

finally! got my wbr-1310 router to accept a modified firmware image. I had to do a nasty hack to add the '7zip' header to each section of the lzma-compressed squash filesystem. but then I was rewarded with a success screen, and then on reboot, the correct date! [comment]

2019-01-09-1632Z

now that my panorama generator is somewhat functional, I'm already getting distracted by the idea that it could show the Mandelbrot set as mountains and valleys. got to resist, though, if I ever hope to settle the "flat earth" debate. [comment]

2019-01-07-0142Z

pretty stoked I got the panorama code working well enough to share with the world. still has a long way to go though.

I'm thinking that perhaps my eating probiotics almost every day may not be as important as what I don't eat, particularly talking about simple sugars. not feeding malevolent microorganisms could be more critical for health than boosting the supply of benevolent ones. [comment]

2019-01-05-1958Z

my backup phone hadn't been able to update apps for months. finally googled and found this solution, uninstalling Google Play Store updates, which worked! [comment]

2019-01-05-0624Z

just learned about dict.setdefault tonight, after I was going to subclass dict to add the desired functionality, and stumbled across it. it saved me 26 seconds of runtime by changing: with open(filename) as infile: to infile = OPEN_FILES.setdefault(filename, open(filename, 'rb')) in a subroutine that gets called a few thousand times. from 13m17s to 12m51s. [comment]

2019-01-04-1951Z

my latest landpaddle design, just a piece of PVC pipe with some bike tire tube rubber attached to each end, isn't bad but needs a wheeled device with very little rolling resistance. my home-brew skateboard wheels are just too bumpy. [comment]

2019-01-04-0144Z

some things about the WBR-1310 I learned: when it's on its recovery firmware, its WLAN address is 192.168.20.81, and it's expecting a connection from 192.168.20.80, on the WLAN port. it doesn't respond at all on the LAN ports, not to 192.168.0.1 or any other IP number. and it tries to initiate a TFTP RRQ for "COBRAART.SYS", but it doesn't launch a tftp server itself. oh, and you get to the recovery firmware by holding the reset button on powerup for some unknown number of seconds. sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. when it works, connecting by browser to 192.168.20.81 shows an upload form for a firmware image. you'll watch it upload your firmware, and then you don't see anything. just let it sit for at least 15 minutes, the longer the better, and hopefully when you power-cycle it the 2nd and 4th LEDs should flash, the former at 2Hz and the latter at 1Hz, and the LAN IP will be back to 192.168.0.1. however, the username and password will be whatever it was last set to; the hard reset doesn't reinitialize that. luckily I had the config.bin saved, and zcat showed the XML with the password in it.

another gem is that telnetd is launched maybe 30 seconds after bootup, and sticks around for some time before shutting down. login is Alphanetworks with password wrgg19_dlwbr_wbr1310.

it doesn't have much in the way of utilities. nothing like wget, or nvram, or even mtd. but you can, for example, cat /dev/mtd/4ro > /var/log/tlogsmsg, and retrieve it from another xterm using wget 192.168.0.1/tsyslog.rg and mv tsyslog.rg mtd4r0. [comment]

2019-01-04-0110Z

finally went back to the roastery outlet at Belisario Dominguez and 5ta de Mayo for some good coffee. my microbatches came out fine but the added oil made the result unsuitable for use with my grinder, and grinding it in the molcajete is way too coarse.

over the last few days I made great strides with 2 projects, the unbricking of the Dlink WBR-1310 router and the plotting of SRTM3 data. specifically, I got the router back to factory firmware and was able to plot a somewhat-recognizable view of Isla San Juan from La Paz. [comment]

2019-01-01-2248Z

I haven't said anything for fear of jinxing myself, but here goes: I haven't been sick since November of 2017. never got so much as a cold. now, a few times I caught something, but I immediately fought back with probiotics and each time it never went beyond a scratchy feeling in the throat for a couple of days. I'm super chuffed about this. hoping to keep this up for 2019 as well. [comment]

2019-01-01-0026Z

unbricked my wbr1310 today. took several hours, but now it's back to normal again. I guess I'll try messing with it again tomorrow. [comment]

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