All posts by przxqgl

squeeeeeee!!

okay, whenever i get personal email from a “famous artist” who i really admire, i get a little verklempt.

a few years ago, i discovered this really weird, really prolific artist, who called himself Ergo Phizmiz, and, since then, i have accumulated approximately 40 individual downloads from him, all of which i really enjoy.

recently — within the last 6 months or so — he decided that the “Ergo Phizmiz” persona had run its course, and started releasing music under a much more “normal” sounding name, Dominic Robertson. i bought his most recent release, and he wrote me to thank me:

Just a quick note to say thanks very much for buying my recent releases on Bandcamp, most appreciated indeed.

feeling encouraged, i wrote back:

i have 40 downloaded albums by Ergo Phizmiz and/or Dominic Robertson, and i enjoy all of them. 8)

i am a musician as well, and play a variety of different instruments:

https://salamandir.bandcamp.com/ – by myself
https://saintfred.bandcamp.com/ – mostly by myself, but different instruments
https://and-more.bandcamp.com/ – with a friend, since the early 1980s
https://snakesuspenderz.bandcamp.com/ – with three friends, and totally different instruments

i also play with the Fremont Philharmonic, a 9-piece wind band that started out as a circus band, many years ago… but they don’t have anything recorded…

keep making music. it’s the only “real” thing there is! 8)

this was his reply:

Thanks a lot Salamandir. Lovely to meet you, going to put my feet up later and tune into you and your hybrid elephants.

squeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!! 😁

although, to be honest, i probably wouldn’t have paid as much attention to him at first, if he had been dominic robertson… a lot of my initial attraction to him was that he made wonderfully weird music AND was called “Ergo Phizmiz”…

blue moon

this is the second time i’ve played at the blue moon, and the third time i’ve actually been in the blue moon… the first time i was in there, in the early 1990s, which was before i played there the first time, i went there to meet an old friend, who proceded to borrow $20 from me, and then i never saw her again.

Snake Suspenderz at The Blue Moon tavern in the University District
Snake Suspenderz at The Blue Moon tavern in the University District

i figured that if it cost me $20 to make sure that i never see her again, it was probably worth it.

depression

A Blood Test May Help Pinpoint the Right Antidepressant for You… but why do i need "the right anti-depressant" when my depression is caused by other people? why should I medicate myself when i wouldn’t be depressed if everybody else would just act in a more sane manner?

is it, really not a medication to treat my depression, but, rather, a medication to make me like everybody else? what is the point of not being depressed if i have to deliberately, chemically alter my state of consciousness to achieve it? if "finding the right anti-depressant" will be the solution to my problem of depression, then why wasn’t it decided for me when i was born, that this is the solution, and start me on anti-depressants at that time? once again, i ask: why should I medicate myself when i wouldn’t be depressed if everybody else would just act in a more sane manner?

😠

it seems incredible, as in “un-believable”, but #drumpf keeps on getting worse… and, at this point, it’s a lot more likely that we will experience nuclear armageddon within the next six months than it has ever been in my life… and, as noah mickens says, it’s difficult to get motivated to do anything when the news is that there’s going to be nuclear war within the week. 😠

and it’s going to be at least 2018 before we can legally vote the crap out. at this point, it’s my very strong impression that we will either annihilate ourselves, or experience a violent revolution before then, and, while i hope that neither one happens, it appears that either option may be better than allowing #drumpf to run roughshod over what is left of america until november of next year.

the only thing that keeps me going, at this point, is the vague realisation that what i hear in the news is deliberately made to sound as dire as possible, in order to provide that extra “thrill” required to make people want to know more, for as many people as possible, and that, in reality, things aren’t anywhere near as bad as they’re making it out to be…

but when they’re talking in serious tones about nuclear war between donald trump and kim jong-un — the two most childish leaders on the face of the planet — there’s an awful lot of leeway that still includes a large swath of the entire population of the world before we get anywhere close to “reasonable”. 😐

in other news, snake suspenderz has two gigs coming up this weekend. an hour at the opening of a new winery in woodinville, on saturday, and at the blue moon on sunday. woo… if #drumpf doesn’t blow us up before then…

i’m really glad…

the computer industry has been a-twitter for the past few days, concerning a zero-day “bug” in micro$lop word, which gives an attacker full execution control of the victim’s machine — a Very Bad Thing®.

this reminds me of a couple of things that i experienced, more-or-less first-hand, while i was working at micro$lop, and is the PRIMARY REASON why i’m really glad i don’t run machines with their software on them.

there’s this, which outlines what the “bug” is, and how it allows an attacker to take control of a victim’s machine (i put the word “bug” in quotation marks because bugs are usually things that appear in the code by mistake, but it is my impression that micro$lop put this in deliberately, without realising the potential damage it could do)… which brings up the fact that they have known, particularly, about security problems with OLE (which went through a stage where they were referring to it as “ActiveX”), at least since my friend, and computer-god fred debuted The Exploder Control in 1995, which did a clean shut-down of any machine unfortunate enough to be running Windows95 — PLEASE NOTE: the Exploder Control is not harmful, and will not run correctly unless you’re running Windows95 and Internet Explorer version 3, which, by this time, presumably, you’re not. fred’s premise was, and still is, that if you have a method of excersising THAT MUCH control over a machine, it better well be FULLY AND COMPLETELY SECURE, otherwise people WILL take advantage of it.

i worked at micro$lop when the first Word Concept Virus was discovered. it was unique (at the time) because it allowed an attacker to infect a victim’s machine over email, without actually having to have physical contact with the target machine. it worked by utilising micro$lop word’s “normal.dot” template, and required the victim to have macros enabled by default. the new, most recent word problem doesn’t require macros to be enabled, and doesn’t work if the application is running in “Protected View”. so, the solution micro$lop has come up with is to recommend that you run word in “Protected View” in order to avoid this particular vulnerability.

it is significant, to me, that the primary reason we have things like active antivirus software on our computers today is because of actions taken by the micro$lop corporation when i worked there. when i was working there, they were the largest manufacturer of computer software in the world.

and it reminds me of the solution micro$lop came up with to avoid another “bug” in another one of their “excellent” programs, internet explorer: version 3 exhibited a flaw in the way that it displays URIs in the address bar, and by opening a specially crafted URI an attacker could open a page that appears to be from a different domain from the current location. the solution? “Do not click any hyperlinks that you do not trust. Type them into the address bar yourself“… despite the fact that one of the features of all web browsers is that you can get from one source of information to the next, easily, without having to type in long, unintelligible strings of code.

Rule of thumb — Every time Microsoft uses the word “smart,” be on the lookout for something dumb.
     — John Walker

A little detective work revealed that, as is usually the case when you encounter something shoddy in the vicinity of a computer, Microsoft incompetence and gratuitous incompatibility were to blame.
     — John Walker