This whole blog might actually be broken…

UPDATE – found the broken plugin. The blog will live…

Not that I’ve been using this one much, but I see something has broken and I can’t even see the pages any more (the data is all intact as far as I can tell, but none of the messing with theme updates has made the posts show up again.)

Not sure if I’ll come back to fix this one or just purge it entirely. Be aware that at least I do try to keep an eye on this thing, even if I’m not actively using it. Just don’t be surprised if this one starts redirecting to one of my other blog sites instead…

How I know this blog is neglected…

Yes, I know, I haven’t posted anything on this particular blog in quite a while. If nothing else, I ought to post something about OpenStreetMap one of these days since I’ve been playing with it lately.

What’s really reminding me that I haven’t posted anything for a while is the persistent attempts by the festering pustule on the butt of the internet that is “SEO” blog-spammers.

Some spambot keeps trying to comment in random posts to promote some “SEO friendly content” generator of some kind. In order to avoid spam-filters they don’t put a direct link to it, instead, they end their generic “gosh what an interesting post” comment with a request for the reader to Google the search terms that they expect to lead to whatever crap they’re peddling (I refuse to mention these terms as I don’t even want them to become more searchable).

They all get caught by moderation and rejected as spam, so you actual humans who may still be reading these don’t have to look at them, but they are beginning to annoy the heck out of me.

Where have I been? Let me dust this blog off a bit…

Logo for the Ingress gameHas it really been a year and a half since I updated this particular blog? Wow.

I tend to be a bit more active on one of my other, more audio-project-related blogs. However, I’m still playing out in the Big Room as much as I have time to.

Lately, I’ve been playing Google’s new location-based game, “Ingress“. It’s turning out to be a fairly educational game – I’ve learned a lot about my local area playing Ingress.

The connection between those two paragraphs is that I put together an audio show on the subject of Playing Ingress which finally popped up a few weeks ago at Hacker Public Radio. If it’s a topic you might be interested in, give it a listen!

Moving! Everything is moving!

Including me! But starting with my websites…

The Minister of Rocktology and I just bought a business, after several years of investigation. This means that among other things, I now need to orchestrate leaving my current job without causing too much disruption (the pay hasn’t been all that great, but otherwise my job of the last three years has been pretty nice, and I don’t want to leave them hanging) and shovelling out the Asylum down here and getting it sold, and then relocating my corpus about 1800 miles from here. At least I’ll be relocating to a place that has actual water, high temperatures below 90°F, and isn’t on fire.

As part of the process, I’m finally getting my servers moved to hosting so that I can stop worrying about keeping a physical machine running and the cable company getting paid an exorbitant fee to allow them to be connected to the internet (and my parent’s ISP persistently dropping my emails, presumably because they assume it MUST be spam if the server is on a cable-modem…buttheads.)

If I’ve done this right, you won’t see this post until I’ve gotten the website migrated to the virtual server at the hosting company (and then you WILL see it.)

Once I’ve got that done, I just need to get my mail server and possibly IM (XMPP) server moved and I’ll be done, and I can decomission the decade-old full-sized computer that’s doing most of my hosting labor, and the crippled laptop that’s doing the rest.

More to follow later.


I finally got this thing updated to the current version of wordpress and got all the plugins updated. Now I just need to put something useful and/or hypothetically interesting in here.

But not until tomorrow – it’s already past my bedtime.

Strange consumer machines


Just a quick test.  I’ve been pondering the development of “consumer” (and “user”/participant, of course) technology. 

I’m getting a great deal of useful enjoyment out of this relatively “low end” (by the standards of dang rich people who can afford to rush out and buy the latest thing every six months) Android phone.  I named it “Imp” (any Terry Pratchett fans reading this?).  I’m not sure whether to be pleased or disturbed at just how quickly I’ve gotten used to having a reasonably powerful computer with nigh-unto-ubiquitous Internet access at virtually any time I’m conscious.  Fortunately, mostly the former.

And speaking of “consumer” technology, anybody like pie?  Yes, that’s a VENDING MACHINE in that picture, and those ARE full-sized pecan pies in the bottom of it.  At least, that’s what you should see if this WordPress application for Android is actually working.

I think I shall call him “Nero”.

Unidentified yeast cultured from the flowering parts of a Lyreleaf sage (Salvia lyrata) - Brightfield image 400X magnification
“Nero” here seems to be the only thing I can find growing in the stuff I put the Lyreleaf Sage flowers into. Maybe some kind of Brettanomyces yeast? I’m going to have to autodidact myself into a better understanding of yeast ecology. Not to mention yeast physiology – am I seeing two cells undergoing postconjugational sporulation there in the middle of the image?

Unidentified yeast cultured from the flowering parts of a Lyreleaf sage (Salvia lyrata) - Gram-stained, Brightfield,  1000X magnificationI’m a bit puzzled that I don’t see anything that looks much like bacteria in here. “Everything is everywhere” right? And yet, I’m not seeing any obvious acetic-acid bacterial growth here. Kind of a bummer, since that’s REALLY what I’m after here overall, but that’s okay. I can play with Nero in the meantime. Anybody know if you can make (palatable) leavened dough with Brettanomyces yeasts?…

I still need to go try the same cultivation on some “Texas Bluebonnets” and “Indian Paintbrush” flowers, since those are blooming around here now too. I figure there’s bound to be some Gluconobacter floating around out there somewhere. I suppose in the worst case, I can try cultivating some off of fallen fruit later in the summer when stuff starts getting ripe.

Bioprospecting micro-preview

Lyreleaf Sage FlowersThis unassuming little flower just happened to be conveniently near here. As far as I can tell, it’s a “Lyreleaf Sage” (Salvia lyrata). I plucked a flowering section and dropped it into a container of my special selective media a couple of days ago. It’s starting to get a little flocculant and there’s a faint “fermenting yeast” smell, so there’s something going on in there. I didn’t see much yet last night when I took a closer look, but I did see these, which I assume to be pollen grains from my bioprospecting sample.

Apparently individual pollen grains from the Lyreleaf Sage