Monthly Archives: September 2013

This is how the world end

I have a family member who recently said to me that if I posted pictures of them on Facebook, they would stop speaking to me.  This, entirely understandable, concern stems from their conscious concern that personnel information collection by large companies has a tendency to be abused.  Once you have surrender your privacy it is nearly impossible to get back.

What made the conversation stand out to me wasn’t their “fear” of business; but that this particular family member is one that inherently trusts government to solve this (and many other) issues.  There seems to be a fundamental disconnect between the perceived danger from business and the real danger of government.

Coca-cola cannot force my soda consumption (or limit the size of my cup.)  Google cannot regulate which sites I am allowed to visit, or what the content of those sites can be.  Phillip-Morris is entirely unable to limit the extent of my free speech by defining who is, or is not, a “legitimate” reporter.  And while Facebook may want to use your personnel information to sell you crap, or profile you activities; it doesn’t have the ability levy punitive damages, listen in on any phone conversation you have ever had, or target you with a drone strike.

One’s personnel privacy should certainly be protracted, but a healthy fear of the abuse of capitalism should always be tempered with a real fear of the only institution that has the ability to use force against us.  An institution that has demonstrated time and time again that it abuses that force to the detriment of both our privacy and our liberty.

I am not a link bot… I hope

Once again my desktop has become to cluttered with links.  Here are some of the ones I have been using the last couple weeks.


  • Vim Cheet Sheet – A short list of useful Vim commands & short-cuts.
  • Vim copy and past commands – Setting blocks, yank, paste, cut, etc.. in vim
  • Vim word completion  – Found this more useful after binding it the completion command to the tab key (aka bash mode.)
  • Remove unwanted spaces – Because some “people” think using spaces instead of tabs is a good idea.
  • Accessing the System clipboard in Vim – Because Vim registers do not necessarily map to the OS clipboard.  The quick summary is that I would strongly recommend putting the following alias in your .bashrc if type “gvim” > /dev/null; then alias vim=”gvim -v”; fi then make sure you have gvim installed.
  • Using Vim Registers – Actually using the registered mentioned above.
  • Pasting in Visual mode – Using registers is great but not really useful if you keep having to switch back to command mode to use them.



  • Singing with Sinatra Pt. 2 – Sinatra is a ultra simplified application server environment for Ruby.   Think Rails only about 1/10th its size.  This was the best of the tutorials I found for it.
  • Thin Server Production and static files – This little blurb was something I caught on StackOverflow and knew I would need for later as our production system is running into the same issue.
  • fpm (freggin package manager) – Tool for creating deb/rpm packages from lists of filesystem files.  Particularly useful for gem files (it even has it as an option.) I am in the process of moving over my existing ruby build scripts over to fpm.


  • Creating Meta Packages – Meta packages are simply empty deb packages that contain nothing but a list of dependancies.  This way you can create a batch of files to be installed for a given purpose (like installing KDE Desktop.)
  • equivs-control man page- Used in the creation of Meta packages
  • Binary Package building tutorial for Debian – The deb build package environment basically builds itself around have source for all software.  This is a problem for packaging non-open source programs that don’t provide a source.  This is a tutorial for how to do it.
  • Template Changes file – Debian apt repositories generally work with .changes files to actually publish their packages.  This is an example of a changes file for the package dpkg-ruby.
  • Create you own apt repository – Includes information on upload support (which uses changes files mentioned above.)
  • Creating a basic Ruby application structure – How to create you base dependencies, directory structure, and file-system layout for a base Ruby project.