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June 25, 2003

premature specification

Haven't made an update in a while, so I thought I would just type something as I take a break while drinking down an ice cold Goose Island Summertime™.

So nothing much to say. Can't wait to check out the new North Michigan Avenue Apple Store. I hope I will get a chance to stop by for the grand opening on Friday, but I doubt it as I have a birthday party to go to at Harry Carey's. If I do make it in, I'm afraid I know what I will end up buying. Yup, you guessed it, an iSight. What can I say? I'm a total sucker for everything Apple. Come August I wonder if I will be able to resist the temptation to buy a G5. Spending $3500 on a computer really won't help me get out of my parents' house any faster that is for sure.

Well I'm almost done with my beer, so I guess that's it for now.

June 11, 2003

iTunes song frequency

So I have a playlist in iTunes called Good Mix. I had it configured to play all songs rated at three stars or above and to randomly choose 25 songs that had not been played in 6 weeks. Well today it finally ran out of songs. Setting it to five weeks only gives me another 5 hours of music, which if I don't finish today I will probably finish some time tomorrow. If you figure a 40 hour work week (which of course mine is longer than that, but I'm not necessarily listening to iTunes that whole time), I need to choose a setting that gives me 40 hours of music for me to suck up a week. To do this I had to set the limit to two weeks which gives me almost exactly 40 hours of music. What does this mean? This means on average it takes me three weeks to listen to the 1636 songs rated three stars or above. So if I actually had 7500 songs that the new iPod 30GB apparently can store, it would take me about 14 weeks by my bad math before I would hear the same song again. I don't know what this means.

June 03, 2003

the new ipod

I have a 20GB iPod that is just over half full with over 1,800 songs. I love my iPod. I have it hooked up to my receiver at home and use that as the primary supplier of music to my stereo. I bought it last September when Jaguar was released and anything else you bought along with it was 10% off. When the new iPods came out a made a trip to the Oakbrook Apple Store with no intention of buying one. And when I got there my intentions were not changed. I really have to agree with Michael Prager of the Boston Globe (archived) on this. Checking out the new models they are definitely smaller and lighter. Amazingly lighter when you hold it in your hand that it baffles the mind. But I have to say I don't like the new touch buttons. They are too sensitive when you don't want to push them and they seemed to be not sensitive enough when I actually wanted to push them. Trying to play the little solitaire game seemed more difficult than it should have been trying to use the touch buttons. That coupled with the decreased battery life pretty much keeps me from even contemplating making an upgrade to a newer model iPod. Especially the battery life issue. What is the point of having a device that can hold two weeks of continuous music if you can only play eight hours of it at once.

June 01, 2003

mapserver 3.6.5

Just in time for the MapServer Users Meeting beginning Friday I have packaged MapServer 3.6.5 for Debian GNU/Linux. As this package has not been fully tested I do not yet recommend it's usage in a production environment and I await feedback. This package is built against Debian Sid (unstable) and will not work on Woody, the current stable Debian 3.0 distribution.

To download and install simply add the following lines to your /etc/apt/sources.list file:

deb http://paulbaker.net/debian unstable main
deb-src http://paulbaker.net/debian unstable main

Of course you may download the .deb files directly by pointing your web browser at http://paulbaker.net/debian/dists/unstable/main/binary-i386/science/