Category: trivial musing

free Dmitry Bogatov

Dmitry Bogatov, aka KAction, is a Russian free software activist and mathematics teacher at Moscow’s Finance and Law University. He was arrested in Russia on 6 April of this year and charged with extremism. He is currently held in a pre-trial detention centre, and is apparently likely to remain there until early June at least, …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2017/04/27/free-dmitry-bogatov/

pwned

I recently received a spam email to one of my email addresses. In itself this is annoying, but not particularly interesting or that unusual (despite my efforts to avoid such nuisances). What was unusual was the form of the address because it contained a username I have not used in a long time, and only …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2017/03/18/pwned/

this is what a scary man looks like

Donal Trump with John Kelly

No, I mean the one on the right – the one Trump is pointing at. General John Kelly is just one of Trump’s controversial appointments (and not necessarily the worst) and I guess that by writing this now, I have finally nailed down the lid on the coffin of my ever returning to the US. …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2017/02/09/this-is-what-a-scary-man-looks-like/

variable substitution – redux

Back in October last year, I posted a note about the usage of variable substitution in lighttpd’s configuration files. In fact I got that post very slightly wrong (now corrected) in that I showed the test I applied in the file as: “$HTTP[“remoteip”] !~ “12.34.56.78″”. (Note the “!~” when I should have used “!=”). This …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2017/01/30/variable-substitution-redux/

not welcome here

US President Trump has said that refugees and travellers from seven, mainly majority Muslim, countries are barred from entry to the US. Notwithstanding our own dear PM’s invitation to Trump, some 1.2 million brits have so far signed a Parliamentary petition to “Prevent Donald Trump from making a State Visit to the United Kingdom“. I …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2017/01/30/not-welcome-here/

Merry Christmas 2016

As is now traditional :-) I post today to wish everyone a very merry christmas. Today is trivia’s birthday – indeed it is trivia’s 10th birthday so I have been writing here for a decade. Good grief. If I had known then what I know now trivia might have been still born. As it is …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/12/24/merry-christmas-2016/

if it be your will

A bleak week just got worse. The results of the US Presidential election are, frankly, beyond belief. We now have a xenophobic, racist, misogynistic megalomaniac waiting to move into the White House and become, literally, the most powerful man on earth. And now Leonard Cohen has died. Cohen is one of my all time favourite …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/11/11/if-it-be-your-will/

do not click here

I have just noticed that the getsafeonline campaign’s website contains this wonderfully ironic side bar graphic. Go on, you know you want to.

Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/10/24/do-not-click-here/

NFC? NFW

As is our custom on a Saturday, this morning my wife and I went out to a local cafe for breakfast. We know the proprietress so I was chatting to her whilst paying for the meal. Part way through the chat, the cafe proprietress tore off the receipt from the POS terminal and removed my …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/10/22/nfc-nfw/

variable substitution in lighttpd

I’ve been a lighty user for many years now, having junked apache when it became obviously overweight for my target devices (the slugs in particular). Trivia is, of course, powered by lighty as are all my other websites. Lighty’s configuration file syntax is reasonably simple to understand, and is well documented on the Redmine wiki. …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/10/19/variable-substitution-in-lighttpd/

show me yours

As Theresa May moves from the Home Office to Number 10, it is perhaps timely to reflect on public attitudes to surveillance as evidenced in Liberty’s campaign film “Show me yours” in April of this year. In the film (shown below), comedian Olivia Lee pursues members of the public with the intention of taking details …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/07/13/show-me-yours/

raid performance

I have recently been building a new NAS box (of which, possibly, more later). In fact the build is really a rebuild because I initially built the server about three years ago in order to consolidate a bunch of services I was running on assorted separate servers into one place. That first build was a …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/05/02/raid-performance/

jibber jabber

For some time mow I have been increasingly fed up with the poor service offered by SMS on my mobile phone. I’m not a hugely prolific sender of text messages, and those I do send are primarily aimed at my wife and kids, but when I do send them, I expect them to get there, …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/03/30/jibber-jabber/

guest network

Last month Troy Hunt posted an interesting comment on his blog about the problems around the etiquette of allowing guests onto your home wifi network. In his post, Hunt notes that guests can be deeply offended at being refused access. This is understandable. If they are guests in your home then they are probably close …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/01/24/guest-network/

sign this now

I am a paying member of both Amnesty International and the Open Rights Group. Both those organisations, along with many other Civil Rights organisations, technology companies and concerned individuals are signatories to an open letter to Governments across the world demanding that we retain the right to strong encryption in order to protect our privacy. …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/01/11/sign-this-now/

idiotic

Today’s Register has an article about the UK Internet Service Providers Association written evidence to the Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill. I don’t wish to comment on that evidence here, Adrian Kennard has already provided much useful comment on the failings of the Draft Bill. My purpose in this post to …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/01/07/idiotic/

a bad way to end the year

Sadly, I read today that Ian Murdock, the “Ian” in Debian, died on Monday, 28 December 2015. He was only 42 years old. Various reports indicate that he had been distressed for some time before his death. The tweets reportedly from Murdock’s twitter account shortly before his death are very disturbing. Murdock’s contribution to the …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2016/01/01/a-bad-way-to-end-the-year/

merry christmas 2015

santa with laptop

It’s trivia’s birthday again (9 years old today!), so I just have to post to wish my readers (both of you, you know who you are….) a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. Much has happened over the last year or so which has distracted me from blogging (life gets in the way sometimes) …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/12/24/merry-christmas-2015/

knees and other jerks

On sunday, the motherboard intially reported that, in the wake of the Paris atrocities of November 13th, the French Government was proposing to ban Tor and free WiFi. As it turns out, this is not strictly accurate. The report was later corrected – thus: Correction: The initial headline and copy of this article suggested that …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/12/08/knees-and-other-jerks/

cameron meets corbyn

(With thanks to David Malki!)

Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/11/28/cameron-meets-corbyn/

christmas present

Like most people in the UK at this time of the year I’ve been doing some on-line shopping lately. Consequently I’m waiting for several deliveries. Some delivery companies (DHL are a good example) actually allow you to track your parcels on-line. In order to do this they usually send out text or email messages giving …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/11/23/christmas-present/

torflow

Map graphic of Tor network traffic around the world

Yesterday, Kenneth Freeman posted a note to the tor-relays list drawing attention to a new resource called TorFlow. TorFlow is a beautiful visualisation of Tor network traffic around the world. It enables you to see where traffic is concentrated (Europe) and where there is almost none (Australasia). Having the data overlaid on a world map …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/11/10/torflow/

lancashire police fail

This is simply depressing. Today I received a classic phishing attack email – the sort I normally bin without thought. According to virustotal, the attachment, which purported to be an MS Word document called “Invoice 7500005791.doc”, was a copy of W97M/Downloader, a word macro trojan which Symantec says is a downloader for additional malware. So …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/10/29/lancashire-police-fail/

update to privacy policy

As promised in my privacy policy, this post draws attention to the fact that I have amended that policy (very slightly). The amendments refer to the fact that I no longer use Counterize to collect run time statistics. I prefer instead to use Awstats which runs over my log file on a weekly basis. I …

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Permanent link to this article: https://baldric.net/2015/10/15/update-to-privacy-policy/