Duuuuuude, Spam?

So, spammers, what’s the deal with trying to spam my blog with “head shop” junk? Bongs, pipes, etc.? E.D. drugs and grass seed too good for you?
Y’all have problems. Seriously.

DreamHost-Related Site Weirdness

If you’ve been having difficulty reaching this site over the past few days (I know that I have, for one…), there appears to be two very good reasons: DreamHost (my hosting provider) has been having ARP issues as well as related DNS problems.
It’s at times like this that I really appreciate how DreamHost handles itself. Most other hosts I’ve dealt with will do everything in their power to obscure the source of the problem[s], deny anything is wrong or widespread and basically do everything in their power to point the blame at their customers. DreamHost keeps a blog and updates it to let customers know what’s up.
That’s customer service for you and that’s why I stick with ’em, even if their CPU/network performance isn’t top-of-the-line.

An Incredible View Of Downtown Philadelphia

A few lucky private citizens were lucky enough to be invited to take a tour of the still-under-construction Comcast Center in Center City Philadelphia. One enterprising blogger amongst the crowd documented the trip in pictorial form (the above panorama is an image from the 55th story). There are some incredible shots amongst the ones he managed to grab, particularly the picture of the BFP to the Museum of Art, the shot of the PMA itself and the birds’-eye shot of LOVE Park.
If you’re a Philly native or are simply interested in urban architecture, you owe it to yourself to check out the gallery.

A Very Merry Unbirthday To Me

Work has been a little on the crazy side as of late, so my 5th anniversary of blogging (which was yesterday) passed by unnoticed. Mind you, it’s not the 5th anniversary of Literal Barrage, whose existence traces to sometime after the run-up to the ’03 invasion of Iraq, but rather the anniversary of my first foray into blogging.
Things have changed quite a bit in those 5 years: a new child arrived, one is on the way, etc., and my blogging focus has changed. I don’t write about politics or cultural issues nearly as much as I used to — in fact, there are times that I go back through my archives and think “Who was that, writing those posts?” I also have found that, increasingly, LB has become more of a “tumblog”, a place for random thoughts and posts, moreso than serious discussion.
It’s a matter of priorities, really. I rarely have the time to devote to sitting down and “penning” a long-ish post and, to be frank, it does bother me. I’ve started doing some light, “humorous” blogging over at the Protein Wisdom Pub, a group blog that Jeff Goldstein was gracious enough to grant me access to.
It’s getting to the point where bloggers that want to make a difference almost have to devote themselves to the prospect full-time (or inhabit the hallowed halls of academia, at the very least). I’ll keep chipping in around the edges with silly YouTube posts and family stories, I suppose, at least until my employment situation becomes a bit, well, clearer.

There Oughtta Be A Law

That is, there ought to be a law that allows for the sound public whippings of online stalkers by those affected/aggreived.
As other commenters noted, common sense would allow for Jeff to set upon his stalker (who has threatened his family, particularly his 3 year old son and continues to try to reveal personal information about Jeff and his family despite extensive legal proceedings) with a newspaper, box of pasta or any nearby blunt object prior to the men in white jackets’ arrival.
Best of luck, Jeff. Here’s hoping the courts can help both you and that poor deluded stalker.

I Get The Most Interesting Blogspam

I’ll say this much for the comment spammers: they certainly seem to be interested in at least entertaining me in their constant attempts to hawk their tawdry wares using my site and bandwidth. For instance, I received this one from “Anna”. It starts out sounding relatively innocent:

Hello, my name is Anna! As you can probably tell, I’m a Christian woman who loves Jesus Christ and cares for all humans, even the wicked.

Then it gets weird.

What you probably don’t know is that I’m hot. My picture below isn’t really that good. I want to use my beauty for GOD, and want to encourage Christian women (my sisters in Christ) to do the same, according to the Great Commission.

[Emphasis mine — I’ve obviously omitted the offending link, lest I give the hawker her(?) desired effect.]
Whoa. Cognitive dissonance there. Sneaky little blighter, too — trying to lull my moderation finger into a sense of peace and tranquility, only to bring the “amateur pr0n” aspect in like a thunderclap.
Still, it’s good for a laugh, I suppose.

Blogslacking (Or, As I Like To Call It, “Doing Real Work”)

WWDC, baby.
I’ve been very busy here at WWDC these past two days and thus haven’t really had time to post much.
Classes have been interesting and mostly useful. I got a chance to go out and see Ocean’s 13 the other night. My one sentence review: sappy, sentimental, a bit contrived, not much suspense, worse than 11 but better by far than 12.
Also, there was a WWDC bash last night featuring free beer and the musical stylings of none other than Ozomatli, who happen to rock pretty darn hard live. A pleasant night, to say the least.
I’m catching the redeye out of SFO tonight, which should result in all manner of fun-ness tomorrow as my body decides whether to adjust, quit working or stage an active coup.
This week-long conference thing is hard on one’s body — I’m physically beat and really ready to go home. Still, I’m hoping work is amenable to sending me again next year. I’ve had a great time and met a bunch of like-minded individuals, some of whom even happen to work at the same trans-national corporation as Yours Truly.

WWDC bbPress Meetup Wrap-Up

I arrived a bit late to the Meetup last night due to the walk being quite a bit… longer than I expected. No matter — San Fran was lovely and temperate last night and I definitely got to know the downtown shopping district a bit better due to the walking “tour” I conducted.
I joined Matt, Mike, Sam and Barry at the Chaat Cafe, a nice, hip little Indian restaurant. We chatted for a good long while on topics ranging from bbPress to WordPress to blogging in general to the dismal state of the cellular telephone network in the U.S. The food was good and the conversation better.
Towards the end of the meal, Matt invited us all back to his apartment for a little party that he was putting together featuring mojitos and a screening of Trapped In The Closet: Chapters 1-12. I had my misgivings about the movie and so decided to stay only for the conversation and drinks, but then ended up throwing caution to the wind and sticking around for the whole thing (plus, my hotel was quite a distance away and I needed to mooch a ride off someone. *grin*). We waited around for a while in Matt’s apartment, awaiting the arrival of a few other SF residents (Tony, head guy from Sphere, for one) and chatted about Open Source development/project management, work histories and the current over-the-air television offerings in Australia (Sam’s an Aussie). Once the others arrived, we migrated across the hall to the “theater” that Matt’s building shares and proceeded to watch the movie.
I have to say that I was extremely glad I stuck around. I didn’t realize it when I gave my assent, but Trapped In The Closet is R. Kelly’s short film/”musical” opus and, while that fact alone might be enough to throw a lot of people off, I ended up enjoying it quite a bit. It is a piece of high (unintentional) camp — I thought that no one could be so guileless, so naieve as to how their work would be received, but once the movie finished, Matt threw the DVD over on to the commentary track which featured R. Kelly sitting in an overstuffed armchair ala MST3K, puffing on a cigar and narrating in a straight-ahead fashion. I simply cannot explain how hilarious it ended up being — and I do not think the 3 hour time difference or the glass of unfiltered Scotch had any appreciable effect upon my enjoyment of the film. We hooted and hollered at Kelly’s rhymes (“Beretta” and “dresser”, “Bridget” and “midget”) and just about laughed ourselves silly. It was definitely an experience to remember.
Once we were done, it was well past 1am PDT (4am my time!) and two of Matt’s friends offered to drive me back to my hotel. I’m afraid I don’t recall both of their names — one was Kevin — but if you all are reading this: many thanks for the lift!
All in all, it was a worthy and entertaining outing. My thanks go out to Matt for his hospitality and to Barry, Sam and Mike for their conversation. It’s always nice to run across those who end up being kindred spirits of a sort and it’s even nicer to put a face and a voice to names that one has only known via email and electronic communication in the past.

Airport Blogging

WWDC, baby.
I’m sitting in PHL waiting for my flight to arrive and ferry me off to Apple’s WWDC ’07 and must admit to a good deal of excitement. Not only am I going to get to attend my first Stevenote (one that should include iPhone and Leopard info aplenty) but, as Matt Mullenweg mentioned, I’ll be attending the bbPress meetup Monday night as well. I’m psyched to get to meet Matt and a few of the people behind the bbPress project.
Heck, I may even attempt a liveblog of the keynote. Might as well — when next will I get a chance to do this again?
SIDENOTE: This Verizon Rev A EVDO card continues to r0xx0r my s0xx0rs. Too cool.

Potential Weirdness Inbound

A small programming note for my dedicated readers:
I just moved this blog over to WordPress version 2.2 since the version I was running (2.1.3) was vulnerable to a rather nasty cross-site scripting vulnerability. If you notice that anything is missing (images, pages, etc.) or anything that throws errors, please go ahead and drop me a line ASAP so I can get it taken care of. I think I took care of most of the migration, but it’s easy to miss the little things.
A note to my hosted blogs:
In order to draw you all into the WPMU fold, I’ve restarted the migration path. AndyII’s blog was the first to get hit, but everything should be okay now. If you notice that your site isn’t available any time soon, assume that I’m taking the liberty of moving you onto the MU system.