Wednesday, September 06, 2000
Through Journals Darkly
But from this reserve of suffering, of pain, of loss and of being victimized by the selfish, the best personal writing happens. Because conflict, whether it be humorous or melancholy, is something with which an individual can trace the actions. Conflict is the pinnacle of existence and, if properly dwelled upon, it can be an absolutely powerful device to launch personal writing.
And yet why is it that today's personal writing on the Internet refrains from veering down these dark roads? Is it because we are ensnared by the conveniences of technology? Or is it because, as I suggested in Part 1 of this essay, we're simply lazy, wanting to get that blog entry up before anybody else?
Another reason is privacy. While I would like to mention an incident that happened last week that lead to my loosing physical access to one of my client's offices (I had access to the office 24/7) it's not really the domain of this journal to record such incidents. Not everything I do is recorded here for a variety of reasons (to protect myself and/or friends).
So I make it a point to avoid the entries that go:
Something momentuous happened to me today but I really can't say what …
Through Linux Broken
% ls -w1 Segmentation fault (core dumped) % uname -a Linux XXX.XXX.XXX 2.0.36 #1 Tue Oct 13 22:17:11 EDT 1998 i686 unknown %
This on a client's Linux system. w and who are similarly broken. What exactly did they do to install Linux?
Through Bars Scanning
I went to Radio Shack to pick up a PS/2-AT keyboard adaptor. The Belkin Omni View I got last week uses PS/2 connectors and I have a spare PC that uses the older AT style keyboard. The computer is not really doing anything at the moment so I figure I might want to install Plan-9 from AT&T on it.
While I was at Radio Shack, I asked if they had a :Cue:Cat I could have. It just so happened that that particular Radio Shack had one to give me.
When I got home I played around with it a bit under Linux. I'm not entirely sure what I'll do with the thing but as a diversion …
Through Hypertext Documentation
The concept of a Wiki may seem strange at first, but dive in and explore its links. Wiki is a composition system; it's a discussion medium; it's a repository; it's a mail system; it's a tool for collaboration. Really, we don't know quite what it is, but it's a fun way of communicating asynchronously across the network.
I've come across the site a year or two before but I never really played around with it that much. But today I came across it again and this time, I decided to play around with the concept, which seems to be what Tim Berners-Lee invisioned the web could be—one were you can view and edit the pages you see.
Okay, maybe he didn't mean to edit any pages you yourself didn't author but there aren't many sites out there that will let you arbitrarily edit their pages, yet these sites allow you to edit their pages.
But while cruising the WikiWikiWeb, I thought that such a hypertext system would be perfect for computer documentation for a group or organization—you install the documentation on an internal website (or external website if you really want to live on the edge) and as people peruse it, they can annotate (or even correct!) the documentation to acurately reflect the true state of affairs.