Friday, December 20, 2013

Something Is A Fowl

I'll go ahead and admit in advance that I'll regret this... But I think I have to weigh in on a certain bearded man's words. 

Its become obvious that no one who has posted on either side of the issue has actually read the GQ magazine article. I suggest doing so first ( Have you read it? Great, let's get down to business.

1. This is NOT an attack on free speech. Phil Robertson has not been gagged or imprisoned. To that point, this is not China (or Nazi Germany or the USSR). Mr. Robertson is still free to speak his mind to anyone that'll listen and if you read the article like I asked, you'll realize that he will preach to anyone that listens.

2. This was a business decision for A&E. The networks are in the business of making money and controversy sells. You probably still remember Oprah eating a hamburger to make the beef producers happy. 

3. Noticed how I strung together China,Nazi Germany,and the USSR? I implied they all shared similar characteristics such as censorship. When Mr. Robertson strings together homosexuals with terrorists and bestiality practitioners, he too is implying that they are similar, specifically that they are sinful. I won't digress into his hypocrisy over choosing certain beliefs.

4. Free speech is not without consequences, even in a free society. By posting this, much in the same way Mr Robertson spoke to a reporter, I am opening myself to criticism and examination. If he cannot handle it, he doesn't need to air his views so publicly. 

5. Almost done... Regardless of personal views on homosexuality, it does not give anyone the right to attack a person for their sexual orientation. This doesn't mean you cannot disagree. You don't have to like gays anymore than you have to like redheads, Canadians, or people that eat black licorice. They are who they are.

6. Finally (!!) this can stop with you. People like Sarah Palin are going to throw gas on the fire. Don't encourage them. I'm not saying that the issue should be ignored. This is a prime time for the US to progress on marriage equality. But listening to the talking heads and faux celebrities beat their chests and beg for your attention won't help.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Broken Ax Handles

This would be the second handle I've broken this year.  It was a hickory handle and didn't show any signs of wear or damage.  And for that matter, I have good aim.  I didn't hit the handle on anything.  Yet today whilst I was split some seasoned maple, the maul head broke clean off.

So I'm not sure what to replace it with.  I hate the feeling of fiber glass and composite resin handles even though they last longer.  Hickory definitely feels better but its not as durable. 

So if anyone has any suggestions, I'll take them.

Saturday, December 7, 2013


I haven't been on here for a while but its time for a few updates.  Oh, and by the way, the chicken says, "Hi."

Cast Iron Seasoning

Cast iron works best when its well seasoned.  That means obtaining a beautiful black finish.  Cooking in it helps the most.  A few pounds of bacon and your skillet should look great.  That doesn't work as well if you need a quicker seasoning. 

Many people recommend coating the cast iron and placing it upside down over a cookie sheet in the oven. While this method does work, I was left with a smokey house. 

So instead, I tried it on the grill. 

I left the grill on high for about half an hour and allowed it to cool for several hours.  The results were prefect. 

Chickens Perched

For a while, we let our ameraucanas free range.  This is what happened...

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

SuperSU for Android 4.3

If you have a rooted Android phone and have been hitting the ROMs, you might have noticed a problem with Android 4.3.  Google has changed how Android 4.3 handles superuser (root) permissions.  I noticed this when the SuperSU app no longer worked and I was unable to grant root permission to other apps (Titanium Backup, BusyBox, et cetera).

Updating Chainfire's SuperSU app doesn't work and installing either Chain's or Koush's Superuser apps didn't work either (this was before RTFM and realizing it was Google's fault).  The solution was surprisingly simple.

If you have been using SuperSU, which I'll assume you are because most ROMs/Recoveries install it, this is a simple fix.  XDA lists the features and has the download links.  My suggestion is to skip the Google Play download and go straight to Chainfire.  Download the zip and flash it from your recovery (CWM or TWRP).

Monday, July 1, 2013

Linux Sync Services

I love syncing data.  I really do.  Its simplified life from copying files to a flash drive to move from one computer to another.  And then when I adopted my first smartphones (Palm Centro, Palm Pre) it was a hassle carrying data with me.  I would take a picture and then need a data cable to download it to my computer.

Sync and backup services automate much of that now.  I like to complicate things a little further though.  I require services that work not only with Windows and Android (which most, if not all, do) but also with Linux.  Specifically, I run Ubuntu and Fedora so some apps like Ubuntu One (which I like) don't work fully for me.  Thus, my great sync service face off.

AdeptCloud lures users in with promises of free "unlimited files of unlimited size."  The trouble is that its not truly unlimited.  This service does not offer free online storage like the others do.  Its purely for syncing files and it relies on the storage space on the user's systems.  It does, however, work on Linux, Mac, and Windows as well as Android and iOS.  It will not work on a mobile device alone.  A desktop system is required to store the files and the mobile device will retrieve them from there.  AdeptCloud says it will create a "mesh of storage" for easy access.

I am already disappointed with this service.  When I tried syncing the files to Ubuntu, I couldn't download anything.  Why?  Because they are on my desktop at home that's turned off.  I was also disappointed by the installation process.  Dropbox can offer DEBs and RPMs but all adeptCloud offers is a lousy RUN file.

Online storage is available to business customers for a fee of $10 per month covering up to 10 employees.

I like Box.  Mostly.  I've taken advantage of the free 50 GB promotion they've had at one time or another.  Those 50 gigs make Box very like-able for me.  What don't I like?  No native Linux support and poor sync support for Android.  Other apps will automatically upload new photos from my phone.  Not Box.  Box can be synced with Linux using webdav.  Still not on par with a native application.  I keep Box around to backup the files I don't need as often.

Copy offers pretty much everything I'm after: lots of free space (I have 17 GB now), Linux support (in the form of a tarball), an Android app, Windows support, and auto photo uploading.  Given that this doesn't have the space that my Box account does, I wouldn't do a backup here.  This will likely become my main service.  Copy offers 5 GB for each referral (that's 5 for me and 5 for you if you sign up) and doesn't appear to have a limit.  Its cheap too.  For $100 a year, you can get 250 gigs.

This is the biggie.  Dropbox is probably the most popular service around.  It does offer strong Linux support (32- and 64-bit RPM and DEB) and a capable mobile app with automatic photo upload.  Dropbox fails when it comes to capacity.  It comes with 2 GB standard and referrals will only earn you 500 MB apiece.  You also top out at 18 GB of free space.  Paid upgrades start at $100 a year for 100 gigs.  Because of several security gaps in the last few years, I don't keep anything too important or private on Dropbox.  It is still a strong syncing service and an easy way to share files.

Google Drive
Anyone with a Google account already has a Drive whether or not they use it.  I love Drive for editing documents and I backup all of my school work to it.  It has Android and Windows apps which sync all of the documents to my computers.  Drive also comes with 15 GB of storage that's shared with Gmail and Google+ Photos.  However, anything created in Drive (Docs, Sheets, Slides) and pictures smaller than 2048x2048 do not count towards storage.

I have a rant against Google here.  Google is a company that is basically built on Linux.  Its servers run Linux.  Its desktops are limited to Linux or Mac (special permission is required at Google to use Windows).  Android and ChomeOS are built on Linux. Yet for some odd reason, they have not released a Drive app for Linux yet.  Personally, I feel they could pay back some of their success with a few native apps for Linux.

There are alternative solutions here.  I've tried Grive and Insync.  Grive worked but it requires an active Internet connection.  Insync is in beta for Linux and once out of beta will cost a one time fee of $10.  I still utilize Drive though.  My photos auto upload to Google+ and I keep my school work in Drive.  Cost wise?  100 GB at $5 a month ($60 a year).

This is a service I want to use.  It plays well with Android and my photos.  It integrates tightly with Windows 8 but is still fine on 7.  It comes with 7 gigs of free storage but the upgrades are dirt cheap.  How about 20 GB/$10 a year, 50 GB/$25, or 100 GB/ $50?  That's on top of the free 7.  I also appreciate that Skydrive gives the user the option to select MS Office XML format or OpenDocument Format for files that are created in Skydrive.  The ability to create documents directly from Skydrive a la Google Drive is pretty awesome.  This has a big advantage over Google because it creates the documents in the MS format.

Skydrive is lacking for me in the Linux arena.  There's no Linux support since it is, after all, a Microsoft product designed for Windows.

Ubuntu One
One is designed by Canonical for Ubuntu.  Its made to backup Ubuntu and sync files between Ubuntu, Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS.  It generally does this well.  It auto uploads photos from Android quickly but the ability to preview the photos on Android is poor in comparison to Dropbox.  It comes with 5 GB for free with 20 GB packs available for $30 a year.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Retiring My Boots

After nine years, these faithful and rugged Wolverine boots have been replaced. I hiked the Smokies in them and I've done some serious outdoor work with them.