Moved in

Well after the major hassle on Saturday, we finally got moved in yesterday. The house is pretty cool and we're already really enjoying hanging out in our lovely garden. Certainly makes a nice change after six years in London with no real outdoor space. Now we have a garden and a patio out the front. Perfect!

Our bedroom is kind of an attic conversion, so it might get a bit hot. However the house seems to catch the breeze pretty well.

Now I need to get the landlord to put in a TV antenna so I can get my MythTV system going.

ARGH! Real estate scum!

Turned up at 11:30 this morning to move in, and it turns out the tenants are still in the house. Still asleep even! Do you think this elicits an apology from the estate scum? Course not. "Nothing we can do," is all they say.

We're going for a week's free rent. Fuckers.

Moving in tomorrow now.

I'm a resource

I love it when project managers refer to human beings as "resources". It would be okay if they were using it in the general, but you never hear them talking about equipment as a resource. When they say "we moved three resources in place" they're not talking about three servers or trucks or manufacturing lines. They mean three people.

What is it about project managers that they can't just use a straightforward term that everyone understands? Could it be that they're hiding something?

Server arrived

The server I bought on eBay for $360 arrived last night. Dual 1.4G Xeon, 2 gigs RAM and 290 gigs RAID disks. Very nice!

It's kinda reminiscent of a jet engine, though. I think I'll have to work out some kind of rack unit with baffles or something, to not restrict airflow but deaden the noise somewhat. It's going in a spare corner of the house anyway, but I still don't want quite that much noise around the house.

I'm planning to install Xen on it and run both my MythTV server and an LTSP server for a thin-client workstation I own.

MythTV rocks!

I hadn't actually installed MythTV and played with it before. I just installed it on my laptop.

Wow, this has to be one of the slickest free software projects I've seen yet! Installing from the Ubuntu packages was near idiot-proof, though it helps I already had my TV tuner going (which involved sticking a firmware file in an appropriate location).

Once installed and running, it Just Works. Everything is extremely polished, and you can tell it would work well with just a remote to control it.

Can't wait to get my server going and recording stuff! I think the GAF on this will be pretty high.

Microsoft strikes a blow against DRM

Microsoft have come out as unlikely allies in the fight against DRM. It seems they're helping to educate consumers on why DRM sucks. Their new player won't work with product bought under their "Plays For Sure" DRM-promoting scheme.

If the record companies were smart, and we all know they're pigshit thick, they'd insist Microsoft provide consumers with an upgrade path, at least just this once. Then their DRM might be more palatable. Of course, they're still basking in the afterglow of all the cash they made when everyone replaced their collections in the vinyl-to-CD upgrade cycle. They think with this DRM stuff they can do that every couple of years.

Monster MythTV box

I just bought a monster server machine to run as my MythTV machine. It's a dual 1.4 GHz Xeon with two gigs of RAM and 288 gigs of RAID storage. Nice!

Servers on eBay seem to be inordinately cheap. I guess for just about every business, the whole point of a server is it's important to the business. So people don't buy them second hand. Which means cheap for people like me who are willing to buy second hand.

So this is going to be my MythTV server, sitting in a cupboard somewhere, while my front-end will be a silent, no-moving-parts diskless Via EPIA machine. Should be a rather nice setup!

Should I go to linux.conf.au?

Registrations are open for linux.conf.au and the programme looks quite interesting. For me it looks like Wednesday and Thursday are the most worthwhile days. Thing is, I'm a contractor and going means two days without pay, on top of the fee for attending.

It's a tricky one really. Quite an expensive couple of days. I'll have to think on it...

New Kyoto won't be as sweet a deal

Howard is dissembling about a new Kyoto agreement to take heat off the fact that the largest per-capita greenhouse gas emitter won't sign the existing agreement. Thing is, Kyoto was a fantastic deal for Australia. We scored an 8% increase in emissions where most of the other signatories were required to reduce their emissions. If, as he claims, a "new Kyoto" were to take off, we'd be highly unlikely to get such a good deal.

Of course all he's doing is delaying actually having to do something, because he doesn't believe climate change is happening despite overwhelming evidence. Organizing another Kyoto, and what's more including developing nations this time around, would take years and years.

Kyoto is far from the perfect solution. In fact, it's only the very first step. But you can hardly expect the world to start building on it until it's been implemented by all the people who originally agreed to it, and that includes Australia!