Sounds like boobies

Music 1 Comment »

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Earlier, on IRC

08:15 <@highvoltage> when I grow up, I wanna be famous, I wanna be a star, I wanna be in movies

08:17 <@Outsider> something, something, something, I wanna have boobies

08:19 <@highvoltage> yeah, I guess that’s where the “be careful what you wish for” bit comes in

08:31 <@Daev> I wanna have _groupies_ is what is actually sung

The Pussycat Dolls (Image from WIkipedia)

Wow, turns out Daev is right! It does sound like boobies though. I wondered if it was an intentional improvisation, but today I listened to it carefully when it was playing on the radio, and I could clearly hear that they are in fact singing “groupies”. I think it’s just a case of hearing what you want to hear. Everyone is somewhat brainwashed by society. I even heard a 4 year old girl singing along to that song and singing “boobies”. Then again, I suppose it’s more natural for a 4 year old to know what boobies are than to know what groupies are.

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My name is…

Free Software, Music 1 Comment »

I don’t usually get into these things, but the latest meme om Planet Ubuntu is to specify your machine names… here goes…

My machines were originally named after album names. Then after songs as well, and now also from movies…


Disclaimer is my work laptop. Disclaimer comes from the Seether album, Disclaimer.


Sawdust is my Mac Mini. It comes from the Killers‘ album, Sawdust.


Bleach is my 12-incher, from the Nirvana album, Bleach.


Geep is a Classmate PC that I do testing for Edubuntu on, from the Gorillaz Geep album.


Hal9000 is used for all kinds of cpu intensive things. Hal9000 is from the movie 2001, A space odyssey.

There’s more on, which I’ll update some time and add more pics.

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Not blogging enough?

Free Software, Humour, Jonathan, Music, Project Mayhem 3 Comments »

I’ve had 3 people from the Real Life (which is a very weird and disturbing place) telling me that I’m not updating my blog often enough in the last week. I’m not sure how much is supposed to be enough. I usually blog when I have some time and have something I’d really like to say. I’m completely fine with about 2 blog entries a month and perhaps more now and again when things get interesting. However, sometimes I like to cave a bit under pressure, so here’s a random blog entry for the bored:

  • I heard the I-can-ride-my-bike-with-no-handlebars song for the first time on Friday. Listened to it 20 times over the weekend so far. Aparently everyone else knows it already. It’s an awesome little song about how power can corrupt (or at least, that’s my interpretation ;) ).
  • I played with Mac OSX again yesterday. It’s annoying. Recently Mark Shuttleworth said that Ubuntu will be more attractive than a Mac in two years. I think he seriously needs to take a look at a Mac again. I’ve installed plenty of add-ons and stuff to my Mac, and I just can’t make it match the usability and productivity of my Gnome desktop with Compiz on Ubuntu. In order to make Ubuntu really more attractive to the current Mac market, it will need to run the software that’s available for a Mac. I bought my Mac because I want to use the real nice video editing software that’s available for it.
  • Still stuck in Jo’burg for work purposes. Tried to fix that but it failed. I’ll just have to try to get back home a bit harder. I guess I’ll be here for another 6 months max. At least my mother is visiting next weekend.
  • Everything else is pretty much ok.

Some pictures from the real world (not sure where they’re originally from though):

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Armchair Theatre is Closing Down

Jonathan, Music, Project Mayhem No Comments »

I had lots of good times at the Independent Armchair Theatre, whether it was challenging my friends to the only sport I ever play (foosball), watching Ferris Beuller’s Day Off with pizza and beer, or rocking out to the likes of All Star Funk Four. I’m quite saddened to have read the following press release, sent to Facebook today:

Hi Everyone,

I’ve been avoiding this press release for about a month now. To cut straight to it, after little more than eight years of existence and an eternity of good times The Armchair has closed.

So that there is no confusion on the matter, this is what has happened:

I bought The Independent Armchair Theatre in March 2005. At the time the business was heavily in debt and about to close. Since then we have fought tooth and nail to not only keep The Armchair going but to make it the best venue for live music that we could offer. But three years later with my debts and stress levels reaching dangerous proportions, and some expensive renovations required in order to meet the city’s noise pollution requirements, I had to take the decision, like my predecessor, to sell the business. However the sale has not gone as planned and so - with The Armchair not able to reopen without the requisite soundproofing and no money to pay for the rental - the time has come to close.

That’s the story. I hope you understand. The Independent Armchair Theatre is one of the finest things to have existed in this city. It embodied loves and dreams. It was place to belong to and that belonged to you. In all the time I owned The Armchair, I never felt that it was really mine. It belonged to everyone. To the fans, the musicians, the promoters, the staff. I was simply the guy at the back holding the rudder. It was our home.

And it was all about the music. When The Armchair started it had quite a mixed line up of film, music, comedy and drama but as the years went on it grew into a venue whose purpose of the soul was to provide for the music of Cape Town and it’s many lovers. In the end it might have been out downfall, but the music was all we have ever cared about and I take comfort in knowing that we never made a decision that didn’t have the music at heart. I would start listing all the sublime moments I had in the place, the bands I saw, the musicians that changed my life, but the list would be too long and I wouldn’t want to leave anyone or anything out. The Armchair was nothing if not a sum of its parts. Plus I’d cry lot.

That’s it. I could write all night but that would just be avoiding the inevitable. And I don’t have enough tissues, toilet paper and sleeves in this place.

Before I go though, some very important thank you’s:

To my parents, who have gone far beyond any reasonable expectations in supporting me and The Armchair. To Jen and Alison – for being totally fucking cool, for weathering the storms and for understanding more than most. Thembi, Angela, Nick, Alex, Timmy and Stuart and to everyone else who worked at The Armchair since it opened - you know who you are and I’m not going to list names because I don’t want to leave anyone out. One huge thanks to Ian James Watson whose value and talent can never be underestimated – if you ever meet this man please buy him as many drinks as possible. And of course Carl, Jess and Chris for coming up with the idea in the first place.

And finally, to anyone who ever set foot in the Armchair. Who made the times and enjoyed the times. The place was there for and because of you.

Till next time.


I’ve sent Gil a message to ask whether the sound-proofing is the biggest barrier to getting the place up and running again, and what it would cost to get it up to standard. I’m sure if it’s not too much money, that the fans of Armchair would be willing to raise some money for it. It does seem that it’s too late for that though, I wish I had the money to buy the place over and take care of it.

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Time for changes

Free Software, Jonathan, Music 13 Comments »


The past few weeks, I have been very angry, frustrated and perhaps even depressed. I’ve been drained by all of the types of emotions that ultimitely leads to the Dark Side. I guess it all stems down to running out of time. Unfortunately, as humans, we only have a limited time in our life to do everything we want to, and I just haven’t been able to find the time to do the things I want to. Partially because of work, partially because of all the things you just have to do these days to keep going. Either way, I don’t like excuses. I recently read a blog entry from Jonathan Endersby where he explains how you shouldn’t let work take over your life, which has set some thoughts in motion for me. In the last few days, I decided that I’m not going to get angry anymore. Letting all the responsibilities of work, the situation in Zimbabwe, the environment, all the poor people in the world, etc get to you all the time gets too much, and it might sound terrible, but I think life is just too short to care about everyone and everything. I think it might just be better to help those around you- and yourself. If everybody could just sort themselves out, the world would already be a much better place. I don’t know, maybe I’ll change my mind, I’m in a bit of flux at the moment, I can hardly remember what I just typed.


I’ve come to the conclusion that to achieve goals, to make use of my time on this planet and to reach some sense of achievement, I’m going to have to make changes in my life. I might even have to start completely over, even if it means selling my house/car/etc, change carreer, whatever it takes. No excuses. Those are of course, extreme measures, but at this stage I’m willing to make whatever changes are required.


Usually I think about goals and where I am and where I’m going just about once a year, usually at the end of the year. Not because it’s close to new-years and almost time for new-years resolutions, but because I ususally have a bit of quiet time to think things through. I think my ‘goals-cycle’ is too long, and it makes it difficult to achieve them. From now on, I will work on a 3 month cycle, at the very longest. And I will work harder to push myself to get where I want to be, I will have to say no to people more often as well. My goals for the end of July (slightly less than 3 months from now) are:

  • Become an Ubuntu MOTU member. This is something that I’ve been wanting to do since 2004. I should’ve really done this by now, but I’ve been blaming a series of bad circumstances for not getting there (pressure at work, lack of Internet connectivity at times, etc)
  • Get in better shape. I’ve actually done quite well with this in the last 6 months, I’ve lost weight, I’m getting fitter every week, but now and again I have regressions, especially where alcohol is involved. It’s another case of having to say no more, but saying no to friends is often more difficult than saying no to someone you work for. I want to lose 5kg’s by the end of July.
  • Work through the Simply Guitar handbook/DVD. I want to learn how to play guitar. This manual and DVD only covers the extreme basics. Working through this should only take me an hour or two a week to finish by the end of July. I’ve had my guitar since 2004, and only went for two lessons in 2005.
  • Be less miserable. I used to focus on the positive, and used to see passed the problems that I encounter. These days all I seem to see everywhere is problems, with no obvious solutions. I want to be a positive person again, and be a good problem solver, like I used to be even when I’ve been in very bad situations in the past.

I’ll provide an update on how this is going when there’s anything to report back on. In the meantime, if I seem aloof or far away in the next few weeks, don’t take it personally, I have things that I need and want to sort out. I can’t even promise that I’ll be back to my ‘normal’ self again. Maybe I don’t want to be back to my normal self, maybe I should change. I definitely don’t want to become the person I’ve been the last few months, I guess time will provide some answers.

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My name is…

Free Software, Jonathan, Music 4 Comments »

There’s been a discussion in the local blogosphere about nicknames versus given/birth names, and how it should be used. Here’s some links to recent entries from Bubulle, Martin, and Daniel. I’ve called people from my LUG by their IRC names before, with mixed reactions. For me, it’s completely natural to call people by their IRC nicks in meatspace, since that’s usually how I got to know them. I’m probably different to many people since I spend a huge amount of time on IRC, and it’s been my main medium of communication for a while now.

Last year in Spain, I had a discussion with a Debian/Ubuntu/LTSP developer who works exclusively by an alias, and nearly no one knows his real name. We had a long discussion about it one evening. The discussion turned into a discussion about how “real” the name is, and of course, turned into a conversation about what “real” means. In the end, the conclusion was that his alias is pretty much as real as any other name he has ever had.

I’m fine with people calling me highvoltage (my IRC nick), especially in places like my LUG where we have 5 Jonathans, and I get a bit annoyed with namespace clashes. Some of my friends and colleges at work also call me Jono, which I’m ok with. “Jon” annoys me, don’t call me that :)

I also feel that ‘highvoltage’ is as real as any other name I have. Many people who I communicate with on a daily basis calls me that where we communicate. What I’ve also found is that people have a real high resistance to nick change. I’ve tried to change my nick to something more mature (like jcc, my initials (which could also refer to a future Jonathanian C compiler (hey, we have our own verson of emacs))), but people didn’t like any of the new nick names I tried. ‘highvoltage’ comes from a song I used to listen to a lot from the Linkin Park Reanimation album shortly after it was released. I quickly had to choose a username when signing up with an ISP at that stage and used highvoltage, and it kind of stuck.

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Corporate Irony - Dinosaurs Will Die

Free Software, Music, Project Mayhem 3 Comments »

Telkom “transforms to attack”

Motorola boss doesn’t do e-mail

  • According to this Engadget article, the CEO of Motorola, Greg Brown, is so out of touch with technology that he doesn’t use his computer for communication. His secretary actually prints out his e-mails and brings it to him! That’s terrible for someone who is supposed to lead a communications company.

Sony BMG are mass-scale software pirates

  • Saving the best for last, Sony BMG is probably one of the most proprietary companies on the planet, aggressively enforcing their copyright wherever possible. It turns out they are large scale software pirates themselves. This article points out that the BSA found that Sony BMG had a piracy rate of 47%! Scumbags. I guess this is one of those times where I get to shout “THAT’S WHAT THEY GET!” (thanks Nofx)
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