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Randomness for Sunday

Fairly busy day yesterday. I took care of some things around the ol’ crib yesterday morning, started writing up my take on Craig Mundie’s now-infamous speech. I think it’s ok but I’ll save it for tomorrow so I can give it another once-over–if you’re wondering what I have to say, I think Mundie missed the boat, and I think most of the other commentaries I read on it did too. Then I went to a friend’s graduation party. She walked this morning, so once the diploma comes in the mail, she’s officially edumacated. It’s hard to believe I graduated college four years ago this month. I’ve been out of college for as long as I was in.
So now I’m staying up late, watching ESPN’s MLB GameCast to see if the Royals can snap their four-game losing streak in extra innings, even though I have to be up early in the morning to do projection at the early church service. The Royals are like a pretty girl: They break my heart again and again, and I just keep coming back. That’s not very healthy, is it? But I’m smitten. I don’t want to get better.

Clustering for Linux. I’d lost track of this project. Mosix allows you to combine a bunch of PCs into one Linux cluster. Unlike Beowulf, any Linux app that doesn’t use shared memory will run on the cluster, finding the least-busy CPU.

I’d been planning to turn my now-idle 486 into a backup Web server; now I’m wondering if I wouldn’t be better off clustering it with my P-120. If I knew Mosix did failover, I’d do it in a second.

I’m sure there are tons of other applications for this. I probably should get some stuff together and play with it.

You’ll find it at

Another Greymatter site. And I see Jon Hassell’s had Greymatter up and running on his site about as long as me. That’s good to see. I’m sure it’ll save him buckets of time. I’m glad someone else is free from the Evil FrontPage Empire. From reading his recent stuff, it sounds like he’s fed up with more Microsoft products than just FrontPage. I hear ya, Jon.

I’ve had this going here about a week, and I’m extremely happy with the response. Everyday, non-search engine traffic is around its usual level. Discussion traffic is way up. And I see from the karma voting that I’m eliciting some reactions (yes, I know how many positives and negatives were cast). Speed on Friday wasn’t so good, but I came home to find my text editor had a runaway process that was chewing up 95% of available CPU time. That’s what the top and kill commands are for… So now that’s cleared up, with CPU usage hovering at a fairly constant 4 percent.

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3 thoughts on “Randomness for Sunday”

  1. Thanks for the mention, Dave. It is saving me lots of time and it’s so easy – I just write and publish in three clicks. Now that’s cool. I’m really pleased with Greymatter and I’ve got you to thank for the introduction to it.

    Microsoft’s products of late really make my stomach turn. It’s disconcerting (to say the least) to watch as 29 pages of freshly written material disappear and the nice "We’re sorry" error pops up on the screen. How polite of them.
    By the next week I should have a lot more infrastructure in place to get rid of Microsoft’s unpredictability.

    Thanks again for the mention.

  2. Initially I used NetObjects Fusion, which I think is much better than FrontPage. The scrollwheel on your mouse doesn’t work with it (or at least not with 5.0, which was what I used) and it’s not as multithreaded as FrontPage, but to me, those are minor details–the program works. It doesn’t lose your pages or decide on a whim to reupload everything you ever typed on it. Reliability is more important to me than grace and style.

    But it’s not ideal for this type of site. It’s the wrong kind of tool. For a Daynotes/Weblogs site, you just want to shoot in some text, have the computer worry about fitting it into the template and creating the new files and linking the new files to the old ones, and if you can give the users some interactivity, that makes it even better. Manila does a pretty good job, but Greymatter’s free (I’ll send Noah Grey a book or two off his wishlist if I’m still using this in a month or so) and runs on free operating systems. But since it’s written in Perl, you can throw as much hardware at the problem as you want. If a Greymatter site needs AS/400 power for some insane reason, you can do that. An NT-based solution like Manila doesn’t have that kind of versatility.

  3. I used Fusion MX to design the template for the Greymatter site. That wasn’t difficult at all – I was in a time crunch, so I simply opened up a new site and copied the HTML source into the Greymatter template, fixed a couple of links, and there we are. I think it works nicely.

    I just got tired of messing around with FrontPage every night and especially rolling pages around every week, updating old indices, having it publish every page on the site, etc. Although a lot of things are easy in FrontPage, you were completely correct in saying that maintaining this sort of site is not one of its strong suits.

    I’ll send Noah a title too in a couple of weeks. He seems to have worked himself into a frezy producing this product from what I can tell. He did a fabulous job, though.

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