Dysmey Post Archive > Pages for 2006 > Mid-January 2006 Edition

April Fools 2006 Edition

April Fools

No April Fools this year, unless you count those incompetent neo-cons in the White House. They make every day of the year April Fools Day; and what makes it worse is that the American people truly deserve them.

One proof of this is the past session of my state's legislature. Normally I would cover its machinations, but it was a short session this year, and nothing much has happen. Well, nothing much happened apart from the governor begin given the right to lease an important section of my state's infrastructure for money to build a toll road through a part of the state that does not want it. This and the arrogance of his businessmen minions has made the governor the most unpopular in recent history and guarantees that he will not win another term in 2008.

(Oh, yeah, and Ball State got some money for pay raises. I don't expect any since I worked full-time for only four months, and at any rate got the biggest raise of my life when I was hired.)

Another proof is the article I read in one of the Ars Technica blogs by a former manager of a video games store about the folly of parents:

One respondent thought that having kids makes you stupid; another replied that people were stupid already before they had kids.

Daylight Saving Time

Daylight saving time has begun in Indiana. My folks and I have set our clocks one hour ahead, just like every other sap in this country. I've done the clock on the wall of my room, on my clock-radio, and even my wristwatch. The one clock I overlooked was the one in my computer; and I didn't discover this until I found that when my Doom 3 game saved a level it was an hour off.

NPR Weekend Edition did an audio essay on Indiana's change to daylight saving time. The essay was so condescending that I turned off the radio halfway through the essay. It never occurred to the speaker that Indiana had been an industrial state for decades, and that Indiana was off daylight time during the height of its industrial period. It had no effect on our economy then; why should it effect it now? Just because businessmen want an extra hour of daylight for their golf game, does it mean that the rest of us should be inconvenienced? And I won't even start on the affectation of the word "Indianan". We're Hoosiers here, folks: Get over it.


It is odd that when Brad (my boss) is on vacation my work multiplies. He was gone last week, as were a lot of people whose kids were on spring break. During that time I did an upgrade (Security Upgrade 2006-02, to be precise) to the library's iMacs and (with the evening techie's help) iBooks. Then I had to do an urgent upgrade because the first one made Acrobat Pro seize up.

Also I did not install support for Mac OS 9 because, as it has been five years since the release of Mac OS X, I thought we didn't need it anymore. Wrong! The educational resources unit has in its collections floppy diskettes that were formatted under Mac OS 9. Mac OS X can't read them, nor run programs off them.

As an example, Number Munchers is only available on Mac OS 9 diskette. The company that made it became extinct before Mac OS X came out.

In the end I installed Mac OS 9 support on all the iMacs and asked for its installation on the iBooks: At least what ones were functional, for a number of them have been having hardware problems, mostly involving power.

The public printers by and large have been on their good behavior, esp. since the busiest have had their duplexers turned off. Last Thursday the company with whom we contract for printer maintenance have sent two technicians to give the public printers in the reference area a good cleaning. The cleaning itself went without problems except for a bad fuser in printer #1.

I had expected the team to arrive at seven in the morning, so I came in at seven (an hour earlier for me). Instead they came at 8:30; they intended to come in at eight, but traffic and a late technician delayed them. So I have an extra hour under my belt. It's too bad that, as a salaried professional I don't get overtime.

Fedora Core

Fedora Core Linux version five has been released. Fedora has become so large with all those extras that it comes in five compact disks (not counting the source code). So I ordered Fedora on DVD. Ah, but where to install it? My Linux box does not have a DVD player; I have too little space in my room to use it; and it is obsolete in any case. I had hoped to get the latest motherboards in nano-ITX form to make a portable Linux box; but right now those mobos are pricey and hard to find.

Then I hit on the idea of taking some of the copious space on my new hard drive and make from it a partition on which to install Fedora. So I set aside twenty gigabytes as a Linux partition. Then I installed Fedora. It was easy; it was quick; and the booter program that comes with Fedora lets me switch between Windows XP and Fedora Linux.

Fedora works very well on my computer. It detected most of the hardware in my box, and the GNOME visual interface makes my screen look as if I was working on an iMac. I am impressed so far. But the install is not without problems.

I will get a (small) dedicated Linux box eventually. Right now I just want a Fedora setup I can work and play with.

Copyright © 2006 by Andy West. All rights reserved. Written on 2 April 2006.