Saturday, October 02, 2010

It all adds up.

There's a bar I'm a regular at. Very regular, in fact. I also keep track of my finances in a detailed way (with Gnucash). But it's still kind of ridiculous to run the numbers.

Over the last three years in the bay area I've:

  • Visited it 145 times.

  • Driven 6525 miles for the experience (22.5 miles each way * 145 times)

  • Spent about $753 on gas (based on 26MPG and $3/gallon)

  • Spent $4148 at the bar itself ($28/visit = $10-15 cover + drinks)

  • For a total of $4901 over the last three years. Sheesh!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Dr. Maryam Amidi, DDS

The cost of living around here is pretty high, and everything seems expensive -- including dentistry. Sadly, these costs do not necessarily imply a better quality of service.

Recently, I got a wonderful spam message from my Dentist (Maryam Amidi). I was pissed and asked why she was selling my personal info. The response was simply "Please disregard the email...". After further prompting I got the full story in perfect English: "It seems like we opened up a pt email with a virus. We don't disclose your information to a this party."

So, her staff is not so good with Them Computing Machines. Apparently somebody opened up a virus and spammed her entire clientele. Awesome.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

GPG agent and pin entry

I recently hosed my X installation trying to get fglrx drivers to work. Turns out, that ubuntu stable is running a super old version of the x server, with which the latest fglrx drivers simply will not work. Somehow in the kernel locking and hard reboots, I managed to hose.... something. I had to manually remove a bunch of packages (dpkg --purge) and rebuild before I could get things working again.

The "solution" to this first part was to stick with an old version of the driver until the next Ubunto long-term release. :(

After all that hacking, my nice GPG interface went away. It used to have:

  • A pretty gnome-looking window for entering password,
  • Short (like 15-30 minutes?) cache time for future gpg commands
  • A little tray icon with a lock I could use to clear the cached pass phrases.

That's all gone. pinentry-gtk2 simply doesn't work. When installed, it flashes up a window, which accepts no input, and then disappears leaving a "bad passphrase" message on the terminal. The little tray thing is also gone.

The "solution" to all this is the pinentry-qt package, which pops up a KDE-looking window for entering the password. Lacking the system tray icon, I've found that sending a kill -hup to the gpg-agent directly will make it dump its cache.

So at least things are kind of working.