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Problems with Slug

Free Software, Games No Comments »

Recently, I introduced a friend to GNU/Linux. He experienced lots of software trouble while using Windows, and virusses were causing many headaches. I gave him the 13 CD sarge set, since he didn’t have much bandwidth to download all the software he’d like. I told him that now, if he has any more problems, he’ll at least know it’s a hardware problem, and not a software problem. I also told him about CLUG and SLUG, and he even came to a SLUG installation.

About a week later, I visited him again and he told me a slug made him very angry that day. My first thought was oh no! Someone on the slug-lists caused trouble again and flamed him for asking an innocent question. I asked him who it was who made him angry, he said that his computer kept freezing the last two days or so, and that he considered re-installing, but he took my word on it that if he’d have that kind of problems again, it would be hardware problems. So he opened up his computer, didn’t see anything wrong, took out the motherboard, and at the bottom of it, a slug was toasted to death. How it got there is still unknown, since there wasn’t any hole in the box large enough for one to get through. A few days later though, another slug has crawled into his machine somehow. Luckily this one didn’t have a chance to damage the motherboard.

Photos here:

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2006 at last!

Jonathan No Comments »

So, it’s 2006, yippee! End of 2005 was a bit hectic, things happening all over the place, the last thing on my mind was blogging, so I’ll use this post as a bit of a catch-up, instead of posting lots of little posts.

Let’s jump in with the tuXlab project. In 2005, the tuXlab project has received huge amount of external interest. Many companies and non-profits are interested in doing their own roll-outs. One organisation, the Gift of the Givers Foundation, have already started their tuXlab roll-out in KwaZulu-Natal. There’s a lot I can write about my experience in Durban, but I need to give some special focus to people from Gift of Givers Foundation, they are a fantastic organisation. They do all kinds of relief work all over Africa (and the world). Yusuf, the Linux/BSD guru there told me that the founder of the organisation, Dr. Imtiaz Sooliman, found the inspiration for starting the organisation from a sprititual counselour in the early 90′s. He also told Dr Sooliman that he will one day install computer labs into schools, to which he replied that he doesn’t know anything about computers, and then the spritual counselour told him not to worry, someone will come along to help you.

It was amazing to see just how many people came along to help out install the lab. There was a huge turn-out from both LEAD (Linux Enthusiast Association of Durban) and PLEG (Pietermaritzburg Linux Enthusiast Group), which is a new organisation. This happened during the school holidays, and many teachers were giving a hand as well, learning how to set up a lab. They will be instrumental in setting up new labs. Edupac was also there, giving some introductory training to the educators on the first day the lab has been installed. They will actively be training the school in using the Edupac school management software. The school is lucky to have received a 50 computer lab, sponsored by Gift of the Givers Foundation. This is not only the first tuXlab in KZN, but also the first non-TSF tuXlab. The second one is due for installation by another organisation later in January. It’s likely that each roll-out will top at least a hundred by March 2007. Exciting stuff for tuXlabs!

Doing lots of stuff all over the place has had a toll on my health too. I had some heavy pains in my chest in October, and went to the doctor, doctor said there’s nothing wrong with me, and the pains will probably go away, since its most likely a muscle that I pulled or something. The next week, I had to go to the doctor again for a check-up for disability insurance. The doctor pulled some blood, and when the tests came back, it turns out that my cholesterol was sky-high. Pulled some further blood for more tests for the causes, and it came back as a stress-related condition that causes the pancreas to create too much cholesterol. So since then, I had to make some big lifestyle changes. No more KFC, Nandos, etc. And no more fish and chips (*drool*). Only about 20% of your cholesterol is generated from the food you eat (less even, if the cholesterol is stress related), so on top of eating healthier, I also had to sign up for gym. Excercise is the best way of getting it down, since it makes your veigns a bit larger, and a high heart rate will pump it clean. I signed up at Virgin Active in November, and after the first two days I felt so hurt I could badly move. Now, it’s becomming much easier at least. I do double the ammount of excercise than I did when I started, and I don’t even have any pain afterwards. Lately I’ve even lost a bit of weight. I should have gone to gym ages ago, although, at R265/pm, I think I can forgive myself for not going earlier :)

2005 was a rollercoaster, full of good and bad things. The health issue is a small one compared to the good things that happened. I bought my first motorbike in April, and bought a car in November. I also went to Jo’burg for the first time to go to my first ever Linuxworld. I’m glad I didn’t skip that for the Cape Town event, since it was cancelled due to lack of interest in Futurex. Also went to London for the first time for the Edubuntu summit, which was very productive. This was also a year where I sorted out a lot of personal things, something I will continue do even more so in 2006.

This year, I will make more time for fun (oooh, starting to sound like new years’ resolutions here), so I’ll set some kind of alarm at work when it’s time to go home (which is really short for going to the gym first, and then to a CLUG meeting if it’s a Tuesday, and then home, or going to guitar lessons on a certain day (to be decided), or some part time classes I want to do), since it’s so easy to loose track of time at work. So time management is my biggest factor to manage this year. I even got a diary (as in, a book with paper in it) this time, Evolution and other software I’ve used is good, but it just doesn’t work as well. If you write down what you want to do, it somehow has more meaning than making a task on your computer screen. I think I’m also less likely to postpone it if I wrote it down, since it means that I’ll have to write it again somewhere else :)

So, what would I like to do with my time this year? Going to the gym every day of the week is something I want to strive for, as well as going to CLUG meetings whenever there is one. I also want to learn to play guitar, and I also want to do a short course on broadcasting. Then I also have a whole bunch of Edubuntu stuff I’d like to do, which I’ll keep for weekends and late nights. I also want to do some more reading, I read the Alchamist last year, which had a huge effect on me, and I decided that I need to read more books like that. But, I’m going to do everything in small steps. In 2004 and 2005, I’ve tried to do everything at once, and it didn’t always work out. 2006 is the year for baby steps, so I’ll get there, but gradually.

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