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BLOGical Thoughts Archive

August 2013

Friday, 30 August 2013

A few years ago, I used the Audacity audio editor to split up some audio CDs back into individual tracks. The CDs were copied from some cassettes for which I had no audio CD. I am starting to record the remainder of my cassettes onto CD again, so I needed to use Audacity again. The program works well, but if you have to re-learn how to use it after a two year hiatus, it is not well designed. That is exactly what I had to do this time - learn how to use it again. I think I have it down, after editing the AC/DC Highway to Hell CD.


 

I am cleaning up my teardrop trailer, in preparation to having truck bed liner sprayed on it today. I removed the 10-year-old rubber weatherstripping from around both doors and have replaced it with new weatherstripping. The new stuff is more flexible and should last a long time. The trailer will be painted this morning.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Thursday, 29 August 2013

I am prepping my teardrop so I can have truck bed lining sprayed on it. I am also trying to get new door seals, as the current ones have been on there for ten years and have been compressed into nothingness. I tried get the seals at Lowes, but they don't have any. I found a possibility at Home Depot and I will look at that today.


 

Regarding the rear window gasket for my Plymouth, there is one more thing we can try. There is another gasket at Steele Rubber that is probably the correct one. I will return the one I purchased from them and get that one. I hope to have all this done by the 7th of September, as there is a show I want to go to on that day.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

I am trying to find out why one of my computers can back up audio CDs three times faster than the other, even thought they both run at the same clock speed. The first thing I have done is to look at the DVD drive and its interface.

Both machines have a DVD drive that will read at between 16 and 48 times normal playback speed. The big difference is that my regular workstation has an IDE DVD and the other workstation has a SATA drive. The workstation with the IDE drive is the faster of the two. I should have thought that the workstation with the SATA drive would have been faster.

I looked at the SATA assigments on the other workstation, thinking that if the DVD was on the same channel as the hard drive, that might slow things down. My hard drive is on SATA-1 and the DVD was on SATA-2, so I changed the DVD to SATA-6. There was a minor speed improvement, but nothing major. The conclusion I have drawn is that one of the motherboards works much better than the other.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The glass guy called and told me that his gasket place would not do a special for him. He's pretty upset about that, as he spends thousands of dollars with them and this is the first time he has made an unusual request. He did pick up the name of another firm that has rubber for rare vehicles, so he will try them.

I have made an appointment for Friday to have bed-liner sprayed on my teardrop trailer. It will cover the damage that ten year's use has inflicted, and will prevent further damage. It will even look pretty good.


 

I have backed up 189 audio CDs so far, and I'm only down to the bottom of the B's (Dave Brubeck Quartet). I will finish the B's today, with a four CD set of music by the Byrds and then will have about 1,331 more CDs to do. Whew!


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Monday, 26 August 2013

My Plymouth is at the glass place and was for the whole weekend. It turns out that the rubber gasket I got for the rear window was the right size, but didn't have the proper size of lip. When installed, a big gap is left between the top and bottom of the window and the car frame.

Since the old gasket has now been removed, we can use it for a template for a new one. By taking a slice of the gasket, we can shop around for a gasket that matches that profile. It could be for a Dodge, Chrysler, Ford, Chevy, Kaiser, etc., as long as it works. We will know whether that will work sometime today. If worse comes to worst, we can always get one custom made.


 

Since I knew that the Plymouth would be unavailable to show at the fair on Sunday, I decided to go to the fair on Saturday. A lot of the exhibits and activities have been reorganized and moved, and it has definitely put new life in the fair. If I had been thinking, we could possibly gotten a gemstone exhibit in the fair for the North Idaho Mineral Club. I just thought of it too late.

One of the exhibitors at the fair was Line-X, who do truck bed liners. I will take my teardrop trailer down to them when I get a chance, to see if they can put liner on the fronts of the fenders and the front of the trailer. Ten years has caused a lot of rock dents, and truck bed liner can take care of that. It is incredibly tough and can prevent further damage.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater/"Intellectual Property"

 

Friday, 23 August 2013

The North Idaho Fair is currently going on. I will be going on Sunday. I will take my Plymouth to the fair, as they are giving away free admission passes for those who participate in their classic car display. The fair has a whole new look this year, so it should be interesting.


 

I installed some encryption software into my Thunderbird email client yesterday. The software is called Enigmail and it uses GnuPG as its encryption engine. I did this because our government no longer recognizes the 4th Amendment as valid, so it monitors all the private transactions it can, without warrant.

I am also going to do a talk about this encryption at the next general session of the North Idaho Linux Users Group, so I figured I'd better know a little of what I will be talking about.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater

 

Thursday, 22 August 2013

The North Idaho Fair is currently going on. I will be going on Sunday. I will take my Plymouth to the fair, as they are giving away free admission passes for those who participate in their classic car display. The fair has a whole new look this year, so it should be interesting.


 

I installed some encryption software into my Thunderbird email client yesterday. The software is called Enigmail and it uses GnuPG as its encryption engine. I did this because our government no longer recognizes the 4th Amendment as valid, so it monitors all the private transactions it can, without warrant.

I am also going to do a talk about this encryption at the next general session of the North Idaho Linux Users Group, so I figured I'd better know a little of what I will be talking about.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater

 

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

I have been backing up about 15 audio CDs a day. I am only down to Beausoleil, so I have many, many more to go. I use a program called ripperX to do the backup and I back up to 64kbps MP3 files.

ripperX does a good job, but it does have its little quirks. When I installed it on this workstation, I just started using it. It read a whole CD, created a directory to put the files in, then proceeded to create no files at all. It turns out you need to configure it to select the proper codec to use and the program does not check to see if one is selected.

Once I discovered this about the program, I went into the configuration to select the MP3 codec. I found I couldn't, as the machine had no LAME codec. So I had to install that from the repository before I could select it in ripperX. It all works well now, though.


 

Here is another car that showed up at the Paul Bunyon cruise-in on Monday. It's a Chrysler from the 60's, in very cherry condition.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater

 

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

I have not used my Raspberry Pi bit torrent server since I brought it home from the talk I gave to the Spokane Linux Users Group. I tried using it and found that it had gotten screwed up somehow. So I spent part of my time yesterday re-doing the bit torrent setup on the RPi.

I downloaded the latest Raspbian O/S image from the Raspberry Pi web site, then wrote it to my RPi's SD card. I then followed the steps for creating a bit torrent server that I published on the North Idaho Linux Users Group web site. The RPi is again up and running as a bit torrent server.


 

The cruise-in at the Paul Bunyon drive-in last night was very pleasant. It was about 88° F with a light wind blowing, so the weather was confortable. Several new classic cars showed up. Here is a very nicely restored 1956 Cadillac convertible. Too big for me, but it's a very classy car.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Monday, 19 August 2013

I backed up some more audio CDs over the weekend, using both this machine and my other 64-bit workstation. I noticed that this machine, whose motherboard I replaced a little while ago, is much faster than the other machine, so I investigated.

Both machines have AMD Phenom II X4 processors in them. This one has an 850 and the other machine has a 925. They both run at the same clock rate. I ran two CPU tests on both machines. Blowfish runs at 2.84 on this machine and 4.00 on the other. Fibonacci runs at 2.14 on this machine and 2.33 on the other. They both have the same amount of RAM. I didn't realize how big a difference there was between two versions of the same processor.

The bottom line is this machine runs about three times faster when ripping CDs than the other machine. I can really get through a bunch of CDs using both of them.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Friday, 16 August 2013

I backed up 20 audio CDs yesterday. Since it took me 7 hours to do that, I think I will cut back on how many I do a day. Ten is too few, but 20 is too many. It will still take me a long time to back up all of them. I'm still in the 'A's and am now down to Ian Anderson.


 

The mineral club meeting went well, except that I forgot the change bag and had to wing it when it came to making change for the silent auction. First time I missed on that. The talk about minerals we eat was very interesting. When you think about it, it isn't too strange. We eat stuff like baking soda, and there is iron and copper in a lot of the foods we eat. And of course, common table salt is also a mineral.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater

 

Thursday, 15 August 2013

I backed up 10 more CDs to hard drive. At that rate, it will take me 5 months to back up all my CDs, so I will kick up the number I do every day. I am up to the Alan Parsons Project at this point.


 

Tonight is the monthly meeting of the North Idaho Mineral Club. We are having a live talk about Edible Minerals, given by Jim Sullivan. Should be interesting. The meeting starts at 6pm at the Lake City Center. Everyone is invited to attend.


 

When I was in college, one of the cars I drove was a 1953 Buick Special. It had an inline eight cylinder engine and a fluid drive transmission. Here is the predecessor to that car - a 1948 Buick Eight, which is a much more elegant car.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

The lady who has the Windows machine I was going to look at didn't get back to me in time for me to do that yesterday. And then she called a local computer store to fix it. I doubt if they will be able to. I suspect the same capacitor problem I had with this computer. And that adds up to major catastrophe to a Windows user.


 

I have been having trouble with my Bose CD player. That led me to think about how else I could play my CDs. I am going to add them all to the Plex media manager and my 2TB hard disk, so I can play all the music through the Roku box on my TV. That sounds like a come-down, but I have a really good stereo hooked up to the TV.

I backed up the first 8 audio CDs. Only 1,530+ more to go.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 


 

Security Theater

 

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

I have lots of tasks to perform today, even if it will be 91° F. I even have to take a look at a Windows machine whose sound card has stopped working. Is it the sound card, or is it the driver? And with Windows, if you have to replace something like the sound card, you also have to replace the sound card driver. I was so glad I was using Linux when I replaced the motherboard in this computer, as there were absolutely no drivers to install. It all just worked.


 

John Robideaux, one of our local car dealers, owns and drives this beautiful 1948 Pontiac convertible. He has a few other classic cars, but he never participates in local car shows.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Monday, 12 August 2013

On Saturday I went to the Cruisin the Moon car show in Post Falls. This is a new show and there were 40 cars there, including mine. I took a few pictures and have posted them. I had to leave early, though, to go to the North Idaho Linux Users Group meeting.

Here is a classy Ford van that was at the show.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Friday, 9 August 2013

There are at least three events tomorrow that I could be attending. There's a car show in Athol and one in Post Falls. I chose to go to the Linux users group meeting in Post Falls instead, but I plan to stop by the Cruisin the Moon car show in Post Falls on my way to the meeting.


 

I took my Plymouth down to a glass shop and got the windshields replaced. It's so nice to be able to look through the front window now without having to look through the bubbles and smoky-looking 61 year-old de-laminating glass. I wish I could pick up a Concord logo for it as easily as I got the glass replaced.

While I was at the glass shop I glimpsed another classic car in their workspace. When I came down to pick up the car, I got a good look at it. Imagine my surprise when I realized it was another Plymouth fastback - like mine but it was a 1947 or 48, and it had a modern engine in it. For a rare car, there are sure a lot of them still around.


 

Here is another image from Paul Bunyon on Monday. The car is a 1949 Chevy fastback. Very nicely restored.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Thursday, 8 August 2013

I can tell that it's August - the highway department is going around resurfacing or tearing up streets. They have laid down new gravel and tar on Dodd Road, starting right at where our road meets Dodd, and going west toward Government Way. They have also done that to many more roads, so it is a real hazard to drive right now if you want to maintain your car in good condition.

I went to the trash collection area yesterday to dump my trash, but had to detour around Garwood Road. They have it torn up between Rimrock Road and highway 95. How these folks manage to interfere with my travels is amazing.

To top things off, I was coming back from Post Falls on Lancaster Road and had to detour around for several extra miles, as someone was burning their Kentucky bluegrass field and the smoke was too heavy to drive through. Turns out it's the only field to be burned this year and I got detoured by it. It was just not a good day to be out and about, I guess.


 

Here is one car club member's work in progress. I think it's a Ford, but I'm not sure. At this point in the restoration, he is trying to decide what to do with the grille - buff it, polish it or re-chrome it. There is a lot more work to do on it, but you have to start someplace.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

I took it easy yesterday. About the only thing I worked on was a cabochon pendant I am wirewrapping using the 30x40mm lizard scale jasper cabochon I did. I am almost finished doing that. I will mostly be doing a lot of chores today.


 

This is the first time to the Paul Bunyon cruise-in for this lady with her 1956 Ford Thunderbird convertible hardtop. She has had the car since she was 16, and it needs some body and paint work, but it is a very nice car. The whole car is original - no aftermarket extras.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

I think that over the years, I have bought a couple of thousand dollars worth the stuff from Computer Geeks. I check their web site once a day for bargains I am interested in. Yesterday I checked and got a notice that they were closing the Internet retail portion of their business. Now I will have to find someone who is at least 90% as good as they are at selling the stuff I want. I'm glad I picked up the motherboard, CPU and memory for this computer from them when I did.


 

Since it was so wet here on Friday and part of Saturday, I waited until Sunday to go to Art on the Green. I was looking for wooden utensils the could replace the metal ones I have been using in my Dutch ovens. The metal ones tend to scrape parts of the seasoning off the Dutch oven.

I found a maple left-handed sauté utensil and purchased it for $18 (pricey, eh?) On my way back home I stopped by the Saint Vincent de Paul store and picked up 4 more wooden spoons for 53 cents. Quite a price difference, isn't it?


 

We had visitors from Sandpoint at our cruise-in at Paul Bunyon. Here is one of the visitors - a very nice Chevy van.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Monday, 5 August 2013

I have finished backing up the seventh season of Bones to my hard disk. There is an eighth season, but I don't think it has been published to DVD yet. Season 7 is an anomaly, as it only has 13 episodes. All the prior seasons have 22 episodes and season 8 will have 24. I don't know what the problem was, but it's kind of a cheat, if you ask me.


 

I discovered what my power problem to the garage was. I have two bathrooms in the house. One is on one end of the house and the other is at the other end. The power I was having problems with came from an external outlet next to the front door, in the middle of the house. It turns out that the outlets in all three of those disparate locations are all on the same ground fault circuit. The reset for the circuit is in the bathroom I never use. I reset the circuit and all three outlets are now working fine.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Friday, 2 August 2013

I went over to Rings n Things yesterday to get some wire wrap wire to do a couple of my cabochons. I used to work in several secure areas in the past and the Rings n Things showroom ranks right up there with the best of them. They buzz you through the front door! It seems a bit overboard - more like what a diamond dealer might do, but I don't know the history of the place so it isn't my call.

I got some 20 and 21 gauge gold-plated and silver-plated wire. Some of it is square and some is half-round. I will be trying some more wire wrapping when I figure out why I have no power to the garage.


 

Here is another car from Hayden Days. It's a stock 1956 Ford Thunderbird. Very nice car, but a direct competitor to my 1952 Plymouth.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software

 

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Once again, this morning the web host for this site has suspended login for all the WordPress web sites that they host. This is due to some kind of attack by persons who delight in screwing up other people's property. As far as I'm concerned, we should castrate or sterilize those who do this, so their idiocy does not spread.


 

I spent yesterday morning at the car dealers, getting my Honda Civic Hybrid serviced. They got way behind because their wonderful computer system (Microsoft based, of course) was down and they couldn't total up anyone's bill. When will businesses learn that Windows is a piece of crap and is not to be trusted in a business environment? Next time I go there, I will make sure that their computer is working before I let them touch my car.


 

I have backed up season 6 of Bones. There is one more season to do, but since the series is still in production, there will be more seasons.


 

Silly sign of the day:


 

Free/Open Source Software