Moving the Furinture

A few weeks ago we moved the furniture around. The biggest objective was to get some desk space setup in a more usable fashion. I find myself doing this a couple times a year. It's easy for me to get in the habit of having everything a certain way without realizing that the chair I like to sit on is always in the sun during the mornings when I like to write, or that I never put the dishes away, because the cabinets were arranged backwards.…

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The Week that Was

This has been a strange week. It's strange, but not terribly surprising, that given a comparative expanse of free time with not a lot to do except write, that every little thing I've meant to do for a while but have been putting off suddenly came up and required all of my attention. This isn't to say that I've spent all of my time doing chores and running errands. I'm actually taking this as proof in favor of my general theory that writing and other avocational pursuits ought to be habitual and ongoing rather than the focus of occasional binges.…

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Poetry Has a Purpose

I was reading an Ian M. Banks novel, `The Use of Weapons <>`_, and there's a scene where the main character reports on having spent a few years "trying to become a poet." And we get this very idyllic tale of him surrounding himself with beauty and simplicity. It didn't work for the character and I suspect it wouldn't work for you. This reminds me of a post I wrote some time ago that made the argument that poems are made of words rather than images or some sort of spiritually inspired emotional state.…

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Bad Org-Mode Habits

Org-mode is great. Org is this super-task management package that merges outlining and structured document editing abilities with task management glue. It sounds like a weird combination at first, when you realize that it means that you can effectively do work and organize your work in the same set of files without needing to "switch modes," between a planning/task list interface and a "doing things" interface, the effects are amazing.…

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Flaws with SSH

In response to 9 Awesome SSH Tricks some posted the following quote (on the old commenting system): The workarounds have become smoother and some of the things we can do with networks of Unix machines are pretty impressive, but when ssh is the foundation of your security architecture, you know things aren't working as they should. -- Rob Pike, 2004 So let's clarify things a bit. SSH is great as an end user protocol, and great for dealing with the realities of our distributed computing environment in an exigent manner, SSH lets us:…

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Undercover

This is a post drafted a couple of weeks ago, while I was still doing the commute. I wonder sometimes, what the people on the trains I take actually do. While there's some variation on who's aboard, there's a very common and consistent cast of characters on each leg of my journey. God only knows what they're doing. One fellow, I've spent the winter thinking of as "the short dorky one.…

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Changes and Resetting

A week ago, I quit my job. For a number of reasons this shouldn't come as a huge surprise: I'd been burning out on a 2-hour each way commute from Philadelphia where I live(d), nominally. The boyfriend in New York City, didn't make things easier. And while, I really liked a lot of things about my job, I knew that it was getting to be time to move on. My last day was Friday.…

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