Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.

12/10/2003

A Gift from Novell

Filed under: Certification,Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,News and Current Events,Novell,Personal — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:27 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waning Gibbous

No, really, an actual gift.

Back in October, you may recall, I wrote about updating my Novell certification. Well, Monday night I got a package from Novell. At first, I thought it was going to be some kind of “Welcome Aboard” kit like they’ve sent in the past. Basically, just a bunch of product literature and ID cards and such. But, this was different. They sent me an actual thank you gift for updating my CNE to version 6. In fact, there was a letter in the box telling me precisely that.
Now, the “gift” itself isn’t that great. It was one of those single-strap, “Metrosexual”-style backpacks, with Novell logos strategically placed all over it. But, it was the idea that they sent me something as a reward for sticking with them during hard times in the tech world. That’s a pretty big shift in thinking from Novell, and every one else who has a certification program. It used to be that they pretty well expected the certification candidate to kiss their butt, even after we put in the work to get the cert. But, now, there seems to be a different attitude, which I welcome.

So, I may not actually use their “gift”, but I appreciate the sentiment behind it.
Thanks, Novell!

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12/5/2003

Dark Beer is Good for you!

Filed under: Fun,News and Current Events,Personal — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:32 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

No, really, there’s a scientific study!

Right here on MSN Health they say that dark beer is good for you. Or, at least, better for you than the lighter beers. Something about the “flavonoids” that make it dark help prevent blood clots, which help prevent blood-vessel related problems. (This is also how that whole red wine thing works, too, by the way.) So, what the heck, it’s Friday, go have a nice, dark beer. For your health!

12/3/2003

The End of the World!

Filed under: Geek Work,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:19 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

If you’re a tech head, like me…

That’s what this new bomb they’ve developed would be. According to this article in the IEEE Spectrum, they’re real and ready for the real world. Or, pretty darn close. Of course, the threat of an EMP (Electro Magnetic Pulse) weapon has been around for quite some time, but this is a little different. First, they’ve changed the name. Now they’re called high-power microwave (HPM) weapons. And, they’re portable and, it seems, reusable. So, if you’re not familiar with this, what happens is it blasts out a huge amount of magnetic radiation, or in this case microwave radiation, that cripples electronics. The idea being that you could, say, take out an enemy’s infrastructure while leaving the physical structures intact. Picture this at, oh, I dunno’, a great big airport somewhere. Imagine the chaos as, suddenly, no on can talk to each other via radio. Okay, now, imagine terrorists with this bad-boy out on the streets. Scary, huh?

12/2/2003

Utah-Gate?

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:49 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Gibbous

Orrin’s at it again….

Look, I mainly see myself as a Republican. Okay, maybe a “Reform” Republican. A Republican with a social conscience? Anyway, in spiet of my Republican leanings, Orrin Hatch and his cronies piss me off. Didn’t we learn enough about theivery at Watergate? According to this story on WiredNews, no, we didn’t.
One of Orrin’s staffers has been caught with their hand in the Democratic cookie-jar. Obviously, this kind of thing goes on more than we’d like to think in Washington, but most of the time the crooks are better at not being caught. Of course, we have lots of evidence that Orrin’s not exactly tech savy, so maybe he didn’t understand what his staffers were doing. Hmm, maybe not. I’d like to believe that he’s just that ignorant, but I can’t quite make myself go there. So, now, he’s distanced himself from that staffer while the Senate “sergeant at arms” launches an investigation. Of course, that poor sap will be crucified for Orrin’s career, but the question is, how much did Orrin know?

Damn, it’s really looking like it’s time to vote Libertarian. And, after my birthday, I’ll be old enough to run for President. Hmm, maybe in a couple of years….

12/1/2003

Here comes biometrics!

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is in the early morning or 7:27 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is a First Quarter Moon

It’s here!

Good or bad, biometrics has hit the retail markets. I’m not talking about those keyboards that have a thumbprint reader to unlock your PC either. I mean that there are retail establishments that are testing pay-by-thumbprint, right now! There’s an entry on Slashdot that has links to both the good, and the bad, side to this technology. Frankly, it’s the dark side that I find the most interesting.
Ever seen Minority Report? If not, you need to see it for just this. Picture being tracked through a shopping mall via biometrics, with advertising targeted to you and calling you by name. To borrow an overused marketing phrase, it’ll take spamming to a “whole new level”. Ubiquitous computing? Forget that. Ubiquitous advertsing. That’s a more likely scenario by far. I shudder at what this will do to our world. And, I can already see a steep rise in amputation related crimes. You thought identity theft was bad in our time? Wait until people are stealling thumbs!

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