Fixing old posts

Ever since I migrated my blog to something self-hosted, way back when, I’ve hopped across a few hosts and domain registrars. In the middle of all that, at some point, I lost some content. I though it was at the old https://anphase.wordpress.com site where I tried to mirror all the posts but unfortunately most of those where only links back to this blog!

BUT! Thanks to the awesome folks at the internet archive I can restore a lot of the old content. I’ll be doing that over the next little while and replacing the placeholders with the proper articles.

Archive.org snapshot
A colourful past!

On that, note, where are my robots at? Oh wait, looks like I asked that question 8 years too soon, they’re on their way now.

Funny it never occurred to me that I could recreate/replace my posts using the internet archive until at all until today.

Tech overload

Overload!
Overload!

The tech space is one of the fastest growing and changing of all the spaces. The amount of innovation and courage in this industry is awe-inspiring to say the least. Staying on top of it has always been a challenge but it seems that the pace is not just increasing steadily – it’s accelerating.

Don’t get me wrong, overall, I think this is a good thing – technology enriches lives in so many ways and the more people are exposed to it the better. The difficulty is that with so much choice, a couple of issues arise:

  1. Analysis paralysis – there are so many things to think about and consider that it slows or even prevents the adoption of particular technology
  2. It’s a more complex space – it’s difficult to know where to begin or where to stop when so many products and services cover so many things, often with overlap
  3. Increases the barrier of entry – as a result of the above a lot of people would just rather not bother or get overwhelmed quickly because it all looks too hard
  4. Feature creep – with increasing competition and demands from people, the products themselves become increasingly complex (case in point, iTunes)
  5. More products are created to simplify the now complex ones (that’s the unbundling of Excel)
  6. …and on and on and back around we go…

So what can we do about this?

One realisation I’ve come to is that a lot of popular systems are good enough. So a good solution is to start with something popular and stick with it for a good amount of time. If it ends up doing everything that you need, that’s great, otherwise I just move on to the next popular thing. This strategy works because it gets your foot in the door, lots of help is available and mastering one thing will make it easier to pick up the next thing.

Of course there are numerous other strategies but in the spirit of keeping things simple (and without getting too meta!) that’s all I will mention. The strategy is good enough and its worked well for me so far but I will probably shake things up in time.

Blogging from a plane…

What a time to be alive! I’m on a flight to Bali at the moment and on the line! The 20 MB limit is not all that great, but enough for my needs.

This trip hasn’t been without incident though. For starters, my Windows installation is not booting all of a sudden. Haven’t really had enough time to figure out what’s happening between checking in and running to the gates… The boot process was taking a while – possibly the result of throttling when on battery power. Windows machines seem to be notorious for throttling on battery – Mac OS X doesn’t have that problem.

The laptop I’m using is the Acer Aspire S5 with 8 GB memory and a core i5 6200U processor. I have 3 OSes installed – Windows 10 on the biggest partition and Ubuntu 18.04.1 LTS (booted into this now) and Fedora 28 on 2 smaller partitions. This setup works well for me, I may end up wiping the Fedora partition as I don’t use it much – I boot into it to update it basically.

To get the tri-booting setup working was tricky – Acer seems to have hard-wired the Windows EFI boot directory into the boot process so I have to overwrite the Windows EFI file with a custom file with all 3 OSes. That’s complicated by that the partition is only 100MB and every big Windows update re-writes the file! I created a simple bash script that I run after every big Windows update that:

  1. mounts the EFI partition
  2. deletes the unnecessary language files (so my custom files fit)
  3. copies my custom boot file
  4. backs up the new Windows boot file – just in case.

It’s a long story, I’ll post the details and the script sometime.

Any way, hopefully this post can be published while I’m in the air – I’ll punctuate it with links etc. when I have a better internet connection.

Update: Published mid-air!