The New and the Old

February 26th, 2012

Recently I noticed two interactions I had with products / companies / services.

They are un related. I remember them both since they were better / worse than what I had expected.

The bad one

Being bored in a Hotel room I switch on the TV. Since I never watched I was shocked again how bad it was. That was NOT unexpected. I just keep forgetting that. I stumbled upon “Blue Valentine”. I liked it a lot. And interesting movie to watch from the middle. I liked it quiet a bit and wanted to watch it completely. I ordered the BluRay Version.

I liked the entire movie as well. Nice to see that this kind of project gets made.

What really bothered me was the previews and trailers that want to play every time I insert the disc. I can fwd skip through things. But it is annoying. Very.

People do no longer buy media on discs anymore. As a reaction it seems that people try to sell things even harder. An junk-loop-spiral towards doom. Much like the Hotel phone prices jumping up when cell phones took away the call volume. A failed attempt to keep revenues steady in a shrinking market.

The good one

I wondered if it is possible to get a report from Amazon on past purchases. Sure enough it is. It works well. And it is so helpful. I never choose Amazon because of this. I had no idea I existed. I would use them if they had no reports.

Both - the disc makers and Amazon - deliver the core product that they offer.

The difference is in what they do extra: Amazon tries to think about what could be helpful for me. The disc makers try to think what is helpful for them.

How funny that they think that that will work.

hfs dmg files in Centos

February 25th, 2012

In Centos 5.7 mounting dmg files created under OS X 10.6 with hdiutil no longer worked:

mount  -t hfsplus -o loop dmgFileFromOSX10.6.dmg  /mountpoint

results in

mount: wrong fs type, bad option, bad superblock on /dev/loop0,

Without having researched it I doubt that it is the actual Centos Version that matters here.

The dmg has been created under OS X 10.6 in the terminal via:

hdiutil create -size 1024k dmgFileFromOSX10.6.dmg -fs HFS+ -volname 'test dmg'

DMG creation in the command line is a work around for the (arbritrary?) minimum size requirements of the Disk Utility program of 5.2MB and 10.1MB.

It turns out that a dmg file created with the same command line in OS X 10.4 ( on a G4 machine ) works fine. On which side 10.5 falls we did not test.

time to …

February 6th, 2012

It is time that we start taxing sugar. R. Lustig and C. Brindis published a very compelling opinion piece in the current issue of Nature. (Vol 482)

It is ALSO high time that Nature stops paywalling ALL articles. Op pieces like this one SHOULD be public on the net.

Science and Nature are both on this idiot pay-wall trip. They need to get over that.

The should be ways so that they have their content online for all and still give extra for people that pay now for the content.

centos source install wget 1.13 and GNUTLS

February 4th, 2012

installing wget 1.13 from source on Centos 5.7 the configure command was not happy:

checking for main in -lgnutls... no
configure: error: --with-ssl was given, but GNUTLS is not available.

It turns out the solution is simple:

./configure --with-ssl=openssl

did the trick.

At first I thought that a “yum install gnutls-devel” might help. The ./configure part indeed finished after the install of the developer package, but the actual make still failed:

gnutls.o: In function `ssl_connect_wget':
gnutls.c:(.text+0x3f1): undefined reference to `gnutls_priority_set_direct'
gnutls.c:(.text+0x481): undefined reference to `gnutls_priority_set_direct'
collect2: ld returned 1 exit status

Configuring with the openssl option made everything work very smoothly …

once we had it we had to waste it

February 3rd, 2012

This looks like a nice mac memory stat.

Just that the whole circle represents 8 GB - and that there is no applications running (in the dock)

What is the OS doing with all that memory? A computer not doing anything and still using 6.5GB or memory.