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Day: March 28, 2021

Cold hard books…

Posted in Blog

As a thank you from my CFO for the last few weeks of epic cloud transition for work, I was told to go out and have a steak for dinner and to put it on the company card. So Scott and I went down to Parker and had dinner at Saltgrass steakhouse.

And, as I’m a card-carying Landry’s Club member and I still had my birthday reward available, I got $25 off the bill. So said steak dinner only cost my CFO $40, which will make him happy. 🙂

On the way back I spotted a new store in the mall at Parker and Arapahoe called “2nd and Charles” which touted having ‘books, games, tech, and more’ – so I opted to don my foreboding metal breath screen (aka mask) and go check it out.

Basically, 2nd and Charles is an upscale Goodwill store – or maybe even a 21st century version of the 80’s indoor flea-market; lots of collectable geekery, old books, old comics, tabletop and RP games, etc.

Scott bought like two linear feet of old sci-fi hardbacks from the likes of Niven and Clarke to stock the bookshelf in the living room… Kind of the ‘decorate with books’ trend mixed with books people will actually read. I think he spent $30.

I picked up three books myself; a 1989 printing of Piers Anthony’s “Unicorn Point” just because, a second printing of Steven R. Boyett’s “Ariel” which is the one he updated to make it mesh better with the 21st century – I’ve not read the updated version yet, and a pristine copy of Dave Sim & Gerhard’s “Church & State volume II” which handily replaces the copy I lost in 2002.

The sum-total for this collection of dead trees? $15.

Now to go sit in my rocking chair on the porch and enjoy a good book.


Posted in Blog

A while back I was successful in reclaiming my old domain, and then set up an old Apple Xserve on it to host an equally old web page with some links to random stuff.

This was fun, and even somewhat useful as a ‘start page’, but with my moving everything at work into the cloud and spinning down local services, I shut down my personal servers too.

A few days ago I fired up some shared hosting at DreamHost for the domain, just to see if I wanted to run this thing on WordPress – and if that was the case if I could import everything from Livejournal to it.

The answer to both turned out to be “yes”… With some caveats…

The el-cheapo shared-hosting service was just barely fast enough to run the import process. It took about a dozen tries to get the entries from 2020 loaded, because it was taking the shared host over 120 seconds per image to copy images hosted over at Livejournal, and the process would time out…

I mean, I can’t complain – you simply don’t get much processing power for $4 a month, but I wasn’t willing to go all-in without some testing.

Another symptom of this underpowered shared-hosting thing was the WordPress control panel was pretty sluggish, and even the editor would get wonky in the evenings when all of my digital neighbors were using the server too.

Anyway, I finally got everything imported – including all of the images – and I squeezed enough CPU time out of the shared host to fiddle with some of the internals for WordPress enough to be satisfied with it.

So, today, I sprung for a VPS-like setup called DreamPress, which gives me some dedicated ram and CPU, 60G of storage, and essentially unlimited bandwidth – so I can do a bit more than just blog… I might also set up art and story pages for various characters and settings, or something.

This also came with things like free JetPack – which I use for the company sites, SSL – because everything needs SSL, and even SSH access into the VPS itself – which I’m sure will be endless fun.

All told this endeavor will run me about $300 a year, which is a considerable increase from the $25 a year I spent on Livejournal – but I think there’s enough bonus potential to make it worth it in the long run.