Archive for the 'Personal' Category

Merry X-Mas.

December 25, 2007 7:27 am by brian

Hope santy claws left fun things for y`all.

Santy Claws

Celebration @ 2640, Baltimore.

December 12, 2007 5:14 pm by josh

The other day, I had a chance to see Celebration at 2640 in Baltimore… if you get a chance to see this band, go. It’s most of the members of another Baltimore band, Love Life, and they were very good live… Katrina, the singer, has this booming voice and presence, and the crowd was totally swept away… by the end it became a sea of dancing and arm waving. a very good time indeed.

The Electric Church

November 20, 2007 11:54 pm by brian


Let me say it’s been a while since I picked up a good piece of dystopian, tech savvy literature. Jeff Somers hit the nail on the head with his newest work “The Electric Church“.

Before I go into more details, here’s the closest thing to what I can think happened:

  • Somers broke into William Gibson’s house, stolen his pens
  • Next, broken into the storage space of Sterling and found an unused ream of copy paper
  • Frantically channeled the spirt of these two men into a brutalized amalgamation of cyber-punk-esque madness

Now to convert you to the church:

The Electric Church(TEC) is based in a near future/post-apocalypse based world where crime is the standard and every man has his price. Thieves, gunners, and techies wade in the cesspool of civilization left by the unification of the system. Constantly hiding from the bootheels of the system security force, Avery Cates is a man who knows his price. A gunner for hire he has become adept at separating the politics from his work. Everyone has done something bad in their lives, it’s just a matter of whether the price is high enough to make you pay. With the rising tide of “The Electric Church” controlled by it’s founder & high priest Dennis Squalor, its the fastest growing religion. Monks on ever street corner promise eternal life and ‘an endless trail of sunsets’. But what happens when you become a pawn between the System and The Electric Church?

All in all, the book was written superbly. The language is not pretentious. In fact, the vocabulary, though small, is quickly established and maintained. Somers goes into great detail about how poor the quality of the bathtub gin is. I could have done well with him mentioning it only about half as many times as he did, but that’s his style. He takes an idea and runs with it and never hesitates to reuse a choice turn of phrase.

After reading the book, I must say I became even more of a fan. At the end of the book there was a link to a well made website: Being the nerd that I am, I wondered what google may have indexed in the site which didn’t turn up much. A google search for sites which linked to it was much more fruitful and turned up a couple of character based blogs from the novel. Finding these was a nice touch. While in general, they exist more to help the main sites google page rank, it was awesome to see someone put in that kind of time into easter eggs, especially for a book.

Storage storage storage!

November 15, 2007 1:33 am by brian

So it looks like we’re going to be rolling out our new storage array soon. I’m going to be buying the hardware this week. It’s going to be a 2TB monster which we’re setting up to expand all the way to 14TB. If that doesn’t keep our backups in good working order, ain’t nothing going to keep our backups in good working order!

amanda blank and flosstradamus @ the talking head club in baltimore

November 13, 2007 7:14 pm by josh

Sunday I got a chance to photograph one of my favorite MCs, Philly’s Amanda Blank performing with Chicago DJ team Flosstradamus. Flosstradamus has been getting noticed alot lately (I also shot them earlier this year for URB magazine) (press that is richly deserved because they bring it on the dancefloor). Blank is also getting well known for guesting on a variety of Spank Rock and Plastic Little songs, but now she is ramping up for her debut album. I was a little concerned because some of the advance tracks that have been released sounded pretty poppy, but live it was stellar.

Click here for photos from the show!

On Sun, NetApp, & ZFS.

November 6, 2007 5:32 pm by brian

I’ll join the bandwagon. ZFS is the best thing since sliced bread. After seeing a presentation on it at USENIX `07 in San Jose back in June, I must admit. I’m impressed. It seems that Sun is on to something here. Even better, due to the CDDL it’s been included in FreeBSD & Mac OS X. That means that you can expect to see it being deployed more widely here soon once people learn to use it and realize exactly whats up. Here at Logjamming / Alticon we’re going to be rolling out a new backup system based on FreeBSD / ZFS here before the end of the year. The effect? Better backups and more space for them. Yay!

Open source imaging

November 27, 2006 1:24 am by brian

So by all accounts, i’m most assuredly the most obstinate of us over here at logjamming. Sometimes it’s my choice of disks in servers (seagate all the way. after dealing with another maxtor failure today i vow… never again) or the fact that i am vehement in my use of linux for my desktop, in the end, i’m just that brand of pain in the ass.

Which brings me to my rant of the day…. open source imaging.

For quite some time this has been a sore spot. Some times it’s josh & his “there’s no pantone in GiMP rant”. Other times it’s the annoyance of needing to convert file types. Well, today i found my holy grail for the latter.


This utility rules hard. Recently one of the designers we work with passed me files in eps and illustrator format. The tricky part, is that illustrator didn’t close some of the strokes properly and i was left with a version of “mr log” with half his mouth chopped off every time i rendered it to bitmap. Pstoedit to the rescue. Fixing this was as simple as typing the following command:

pstoedit -f plot-svg text_logo2.svg

That did the job quite nicely, except that the g’s o’s and a’s looked jacked up. It didn’t do the knockouts in the center of the letters. This was easily fixed by adding the “-ssp” flag to the command leaving me with:

pstoedit -f plot-svg -ssp text_logo2.svg

Try it out. Works like a charm.