Month: July 2014

Sharing one keyboard and mouse with multiple Windows machines

Now I’ve long known that you could get Windows and Linux to share a keyboard and mouse using an application called Synergy.  And looking at their web site apparently they share between Windows, Linux and Windows. Coolness. 

What brought this up was a co-worker who wanted to share one keyboard and mouse for his personal machine and work machine. I told him about the above. 

So I did a bit of googling and found out Microsoft’s Garage has a product called Mouse Without Borders. Interesting name. 

So you see there are now options to sharing one keyboard and mouse with multiple computers. 

Both applications are essentially  IP based KVM (Keyboard Video and Mouse) with enhancements. 

And of course my co-worker brought up the fact that we’re nailed to a corporate VPN. That’s when I had to introduce him to the ‘route print’ and ‘route add’ commands in a command prompt. 

Kids: Today on the Red Line

So today I’m on the MBTA Red Line from Central Square in Cambridge to South Station in Boston.

A family of four, mom and dad and two cute little blond headed boys, likely twins.

The kids were cute and inquisitive as all hell, and the dad wasn’t putting them down, instead he was explaining to the boys what they were seeing as we crossed the Charles river into Boston. For a moment I had this “Aww, how cute.” thought which immediately turned to “Children of the Corn!”

Yeah, sometimes I think it’d be good to have kids but then the neo-cortex kicks in and says “You’ve seen what kids did to friends of yours. The premature aging, the death come way too soon, etc. Do you really want to go through that?”

The answer comes back no, I don’t want to go through that nor have I ever wanted to do so. In fact the family name will die with me and I’m fine with that.

But my life is way too complex to include kids in the mix. Sorry – I enjoy my freedom to hit the geek meetings etc. Or to putz around on the computer with the most demanding thing being the cat who wants attention.

But I keep hearing from people that I’d be a good father. I’d prefer not to find out. Because one thing I do know is that I’m way too permissive. Meanwhile my partner in crime is the strict one. That would cause some friction I’m sure.

But we do have a nephew that I can spoil to some degree. And if the spoiling includes annoying his bitch of a mother all the better.

Why National Grid and all other power and natural gas providers are doomed

The price of solar keeps going down. That’s point number one.

The other thing is, people have ZERO incentive to sell power back to the incumbent provider.

What this means is that those with the means will tell the incumbent providers to go get fucked.

And this will mean declining revenue, loss of stockholder confidence and the ultimate doom of companies like National Grid, N-Star and all the other blood sucking pigs.

I can’t say I’ll be sad to see them go. They’ve been raping and pillaging for decades now and it’s only just that they’ll go the way of the dinosaur in my lifetime. They had their chance – but they decided to be dicks about it.

Here’s the thing. The reason I hate National Grid for example is because I’ve seen their costing data. They are FUCKING us with electric and natural gas rates. Plus they occasionally hike the distribution charges but yet aerial cable never gets replaced, and it’s pulling teeth to make them lay new PVC gas line.

This is the problem with having our utilities owned by public share. Were they all government entities a la the Tennessee Valley Authority there’s no profit motive per se. All the money pays ACTUAL cost not inflated cost.

So this is why when people can they will tell incumbent providers like National Grid to take a hike, go get fucked, etc.

And while I’m on the subject – pretty much every day I see a National Grid truck in Sharon, MA picking someone up from the train. We ratepayers are paying for the fuel and mileage so that National Grid employee can pickup their loved one. Not on my fucking dime asshole!

An adendum to hacking the Virgin Pedometer

So I note the post I had written about hacking the Virgin Health Miles pedometer using an Arduino gets hit quite a bit.

But it struck me, you don’t need a microprocessor to do this. All you need is some resistors, a capacitor or two and a 555 time chip.

Presto! It’ll pulse to your hearts content in the right configuration and kick the step count up!

More rumination on driving

Never fails. The more I drive lately the more I see idiotic on road behavior.

Another favorite of mine is the moron who gets at the head of the left lane and they do UNDER the speed limit. I have this strong resistance to passing on the right but they make me want to do so, cut out in front of them and stop dead. Then when they lay on the horn walk up to the car, break the window and haul the driver out and beat them into a bloody pulp. I mean really, who died and made you boss?

Another one that grinds my gears – overt fear of cops. Look, its a numbers game. Holiday weekend and cops are going to be out.

But having worked with many a cop in my career I found a few things out. For example – from East Greenwich to Newport we say three cars pulled over by State Troopers. Now here’s the thing – they usually go out in groups of four cruisers. So 3/4ths are busy with stops, that means one rover. Not much to fear there. And if you’re going to speed, just remember to keep a slightly faster vehicle ahead of you. That’ll take care of the rover.

Then we’re in Newport and this cop on a bike is on the sidewalk. We’re parked in a spot where technically speaking you’re not supposed to be parked. Cop walks toward the car, my friend is freaking out. I’m just like don’t sweat it. But my friend decides to pull off before the cop gets there. Nothing happened. We find a legitimate parking space a bit further up. As we’re walking back the cop on foot is a bicycle cop and he’s just standing beside his bike on the sidewalk. I gave him a sort of derisive look as we walked by.

Now I’m going to talk about stupid road layout. Going from RI-138 West to Route 1 North is a cluster fuck. Cannot handle the traffic at all. Either they need to extend the exit lane by a few thousand feet, or maybe block off the right lane of Route 1 to fix this.

Once you get through the shit and onto Route 1 to the RI-4 connection is an ugly slog.

But once you’re on RI-4 there’s those two lights you have to go through before you hit highway proper. I say bury the intersections and take the fucking lights out. Traffic would be immensely improved.

Perhaps the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority should honor MBTA passes

So I learned today that RIPTA now goes into Massachusetts. Only as far as South Attleboro Station which is right across the line from Pawtucket, RI.

So that made me think. Since I’m shelling $330 a month for an MBTA commuter pass that gets me unlimited rides on the commuter rail, subways and MBTA buses then why doesn’t RIPTA honor that pass too?

I mean the MBTA has partnered with all sorts of systems in MA, why not RI? I want to see super-regional transit systems in place.