Libby Takes The Fall

Is I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby the new Fall Guy? Given last Friday’s indictment, he seems to be taking the fall for the corrupt Bush administration, but will it work? Rove and Cheney are still under investigation, and if you ask me, Bush and his cronies have a lot of explaining to do about why they leaked National security secrets to for partisan purposes.

The sad thing is that if Bush himself does not burn for this, everyone involved will simply be given a Presidential pardon… Talk about corruption!

Thanks to Erich for the Photoshop work on the image above!

Internet Machine Shop

If you’re anything like me, you have a lot of crazy ideas, many of which need custom parts that you can’t just get at the local hardware store. Getting something made for you by a machine shop is costly, cumbersome, and annoyingly full of paperwork. Needless to say, I was really excited a while ago when Roderick sent me a link to an online machine shop (eMachineShop) which allows you to design the exact part you need using their CAD software, and simply click “order”.

I’ve not ordered any parts yet, but I did download their software and design some things. Overall the software is easy to use for anyone who has experience with CAD software, and my only real complaint is that it is only available for Windows (I hate Windows).

Pricing is based on a part’s complexity, machining tolerances, finish, material and shipping. They say you can order anywhere from one to one million of any part you design, and it is pretty amazing how quickly the price of each individual unit drops as the number you are ordering goes up.

The current project in my mind for which I think this service might be of use is homemade ROVs, but I can see a million and one uses for hassle-free custom part machining.

Japanese Bonsai Terminology

After reviewing my score sheet from my recent bonsai show, I realized how few of the Japanese bonsai terms I really knew. I had always been familiar with the more common ones like jin, shari, nebari, shohin, and so on, but there were a number that I had never heard of before. Not wanting to find myself in a conversation and not know what the other person means, I decided to do a bit of research and learn more of them.

  • CHOKKAN formal upright form
  • MOYOGI informal upright form
  • SHAKAN slanting form
  • FUKINAGASHI windswept form
  • SABAMIKI split-trunk
  • SHARIMIKI driftwood
  • TANUKI ‘cheats’/form where sapling is attached to deadwood/ also known as a ‘Pheonix Graft’.
  • HOKIDACHI broom form
  • KENGAI cascade
  • HAN KENGAI semi-cascade
  • SHIDARE-ZUKURI weeping
  • BUNJIN literati form
  • NEGARI exposed root form
  • SEKJOJU root over rock
  • ISHI SEKI planted on rock
  • SOKAN twin-trunk
  • SANKAN triple-trunk
  • KABUDACHI multiple-trunk
  • NETSUNAGARI root connected
  • YOSE UE group planting
  • SAI-KEI landscape planting
  • PEN-JING landscape planting
  • SHARI deadwood on trunk
  • JIN deadwood branch
  • NEBARI trunkbase/ surface roots
  • YAMADORI collected material
  • SUIBAN shallow water tray for display rock plantings
  • TOKONOMA traditional Japanese display area
  • BONKEI tray landscape containing rocks and small accent plants as well as trees.

Size classifications: exact sizes for each individual class varies from one authority to another; those below are taken from the 20th Grand View Bonsai Exhibition / Nippon Bonsai Taikan-ten.

  • MAME bonsai less than 7cm in height
  • SHOHIN bonsai upto 20cm in height
  • KIFU bonsai between 20 and 40cm in height
  • CHU bonsai between 40 and 60 cm in height
  • DAI bonsai over 60cm in height

WordPress LDAP Plugin

It looks like Pat Cavit who runs Zilla Smash has coded a nifty little plugin that allows WordPress to authenticate against an LDAP server. Needless to say, this has great potential for universities and organizations who have LDAP based account provisioning and would like to offer blogging to large numbers of people.

So here’s version 1.01 of my LDAP Authentication plugin for WordPress 1.5.1. Note that this will NOT WORK with any previous version of WordPress. Installation is pretty simple: download, unzip into wp-content/plugins, activate, go to the “LDAP Options” menu and set up your LDAP information.

In the very near future we will be testing this LDAP plugin with WordPress MU. Check back for updates. We’ll post any code changes that are required for MU.

How To Install Oracle 10g on RedHat Enterprise 3

So you’ve got Oracle 10G and you want to install it on your RedHat Enterprise 3 server. Well, since Oracle can’t manage to create tar files like everyone else in the world, you have to find a way of dealing with the .cpio they send you. Here’s how to get it extracted:

cpio -idmv < /path/to/ship-version.cpio

This extracts everything nicely into a Disk1 directory.

Now, before flying off and running the installer, you have a couple of things to do first. To start, you have to tweak your kernel a bit. There are a number of ways to do this, but I like to use the /etc/sysctl.conf file.

Edit /etc/sysctl.conf and add the following lines:

kernel.shmall = 134217728
kernel.shmmax = 2147483648
kernel.semopn = 100
semaphores: semmsl, semmns, semopm, semmni
kernel.sem = 250 32000 100 128
fs.file-max = 65536
net.ipv4.ip_local_port_range = 1024 65000

Next you have to add an oracle user and a dba group. Run the following commands as root:

groupadd dba
useradd -d /path/to/oracle/user/directory -g dba -c ‘Oracle User’ -s /path/to/fovorite/shell oracle
chown oracle:dba /path/to/oracle/user/directory
passwd oracle (set new password)

Add the following environmental settings to your oracle user’s .bashrc file. Feel free to change them if you are using a C-Type shell.

# Oracle Settings
TMP=/tmp; export TMP

ORACLE_BASE=/u01/app/oracle; export ORACLE_BASE
ORACLE_HOME=$ORACLE_BASE/product/10.1.0/Db_1; export ORACLE_HOME
PATH=/usr/sbin:$PATH; export PATH


That should just about do it. Restart the system, log in as the oracle user and run the oracle installer (/path/to/Disk1/runInstaller). Check to make sure that all the settings from your .bashrc file are picked up by the oracle installer and have fun.

In some cases, the installer may complain about not having the required packages. If it does this, make sure that the following packages are installed:


South Park Katrina Media Spoof

For good reason, the media has taken a beating for over sensationalizing their Hurricane Katrina coverage. Since then, a number of internet clips have come out poking fun at them for it.

This is a little South Park cartoon that makes fun of the media’s coverage of a flood in the town of Beverton Colorado, and I especially like the way it ends with a group of suits blaming the flood on George Bush, and a group of redneck hillbillies blaming it on Terrorists… Very funny.

I’m really sorry the clip is a WMV. I try really hard never to link to them, but I found it at a site run by Neo Conservatives, and we can’t really count on them to have the common sense to encode things in Quick Time.

World’s Angriest Woman

Crazy Lady Yelling at Skaters from Cliff Pearson on Vimeo.

There are a lot of angry people in the world, but I’m pretty sure that the lady in this video ranks pretty near the top by any measure. It’s a movie of a woman in a parking lot screaming at a group of skaters for no apparent reason. Or at least no apparent reason that makes sense to any sane person.

Exactly why she is so angry is unclear, however it would seem that she is convinced that the kids are not the innocent skaters they claim to be, but rather evil photographers who come around “every couple of years” and are out to get her. She nearly blows out her vocal cords as she threatens to call 911 and demands their names, cameras, film, and calling cards.

Again, it’s hard to say why she is so furious, but it is quite clear that she:

  • REALLY REALLY hates photographers
  • REALLY likes calling cards
  • Has absolutely NO understanding of the law
  • Hates “illegal photographs”
  • Likes the name “Norma kay”
  • Is “tired of being beat up by photographers”
  • Is OK with the idea that one of the skaters is actually named Jeffery Jefferys
  • Is convinced that having been yelled at is a good reason for someone to leave

The only thing Al could say is: “she’s so unreasonable”, which I think is the understatement of the year! Zach suggests that this story should be called “Finally Someone More Angry Than Me”. For my part, all I could do was cry laughing. I do, however think that this video belongs in Zach’s “World’s Big and Tall” series under “World’s Angriest Woman”.