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NYC's 19th-Century Horse Carriages Spawn Weird, Truck-Size Electric Car

msobkow Re:Animal cruelty? (199 comments)

As if animals in the wild have any choice in the matter.

PETA and their ilk are idiots. Pretty, Egotistical Tits and Ass.


GoPro Project Claims Technology Is Making People Lose Empathy For Homeless

msobkow Not true at all (320 comments)

What makes people ignore the homeless is the fact that there are hundreds if not thousands of them roaming the streets of major (and not so major) cities. When I was in Regina, you couldn't walk 4 blocks without being accosted with demands for money, cigarettes, etc.

After a year or so of living there I used to just give them the finger and keep walking. It's not that I'm heartless -- I just don't care to be badgered everywhere I go when these lazy fucks could go on welfare and be housed like anyone else. Aside from that, I'm on disability -- I have no more money to spare than someone on welfare after I pay for my meds. Adding to that, I'd actually stopped to talk to and gotten to know a few of them, and found most of them were *on* welfare and did their begging to pay for booze and drugs, not because they needed the money to survive.

Sympathy. You'll find it between "shit" and "syphilis".

about a week ago

Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

msobkow Re:Relevant Skills (355 comments)

The issue is not the building blocks themselves, but the serious lack of coordination skills on the part of the children.

If you can't get a couple of blocks to snap together, how are you going to deal with tying your shoes?

about a week ago

How 'DevOps' Is Killing the Developer

msobkow You do computers, right? (225 comments)

To the general public (and unfortunately, most management), people who "do computers" are presumed to be interchangeable jack-of-all-trades miracle workers.

I don't know how many times I've told bosses I don't do networking, I don't do hardware, I can't repair their laptop, and so on.

about a week ago

The Best Parking Apps You've Never Heard Of and Why You Haven't

msobkow Could you stop posting this guys articles? (163 comments)

He's got a bad case of verbal diarhea and a love of hearing himself write. He is not insightful; he's a blow-hard.

about a week ago

The GNOME Foundation Is Running Out of Money

msobkow Thank you, but no (691 comments)

Gnome has become an abysmal piece of drek not worth the effort of spitting on. The only reason I ever use it is because some configuration options for various distros are only released for the Gnome desktops on those distros. I use KDE day to day, with the sole exception of the Rhythmbox music player (which itself is just a "lesser of evils" choice -- every Linux music player I've tried sucks in some way or other.)

Gnome 2 was usable. I liked Gnome 2. I would have happily stuck with Gnome 2 and reasonable enhancements to it.

But nooooooo, the development team for the Gnome project knew "better" than everyone else how a computer should operate. They totally screwed the power user with Gnome 3, creating an unholy abortion that doesn't work well with mouse and keyboard and doesn't work well with a touchscreen. It is the worst of "both worlds", and even implements a number of widget metaphors that testing showed people didn't like as far back as 1990.

The Gnome dev team is full of egotistical idiots, and I, for one, can't wait to see them all hit the curb.

The software is open source. If the project dies, the useful bits will be picked up and forked, and all the drek they've shoved down user's throats can wither away and die a horrible, painful, screaming death as far as I'm concerned.

about two weeks ago

Stephen Colbert To Be Letterman's Successor

msobkow Re:So no change then (193 comments)

People post clips. I start the clips. I shut them off less than half way through.

They're not funny. Letterman especially reminds me of a high school smart-ass more than a comedian. He thinks he's funny, but what everyone is laughing at is the pissed off teacher.

about two weeks ago

Stephen Colbert To Be Letterman's Successor

msobkow So no change then (193 comments)

So no change then. One boring excuse for a comedian that I haven't watched in years being swapped in for another boring comedian that I haven't watched in decades.

about two weeks ago

Ask Slashdot: How To Start With Linux In the Workplace?

msobkow Re:PCs aint expensive (451 comments)


The last company I worked for had some very seasoned Linux people, and shipped a half dozen Linux servers (pre-loaded with our software) a week. The developers ran Linux; the office staff ran Windows and OS/X.

We the developers had to tweak and fiddle with our boxes for a couple of days every single time the AD server was patched or updated. We never did find drivers for the colour printer. Only one scanner out of four would work for us.

We had to run Linux in order to do the development for the servers we shipped, because each developer's workstation was an in-development image of the server software.

But from an administration and overhead position, it was a freaking nightmare.

I run Debian at home on one box, and Windows 7 on a laptop. I don't have problems with it because all the hardware I own was specifically chosen for Linux compatability. I don't have AD problems because I just let the Windows box access read-only Samba mounts from the Linux box, and don't map my drives in reverse.

But there is no way in hell I would ever recommend a shift to Linux unless it was for the entire company and they were willing to bankroll the time and effort it would take to properly set up Linux-centric file and print services.

It's just not worth the pain.

Whatever you save in licensing and hardware upgrade costs will be eaten by tech support costs in six months when you're only doing a partial/small-scale migration such as is being described.

about two weeks ago

Hewlett-Packard Admits To International Bribery and Money Laundering Schemes

msobkow Corporations are not people (139 comments)

Corporations are not people. They don't make decisions. Executives make decisions.

Lock the bastards up.

about two weeks ago

Scientists/Actress Say They Were 'Tricked' Into Geocentric Universe Movie

msobkow Re:where is the controversy? (641 comments)

To be fair, even from an evolutionary standpoint the "Adam and Eve" story isn't all that far off base. Somewhere in history there was the first mutant ape that was classified as some form of human. It's *extremely* unlikely that multiple apes developed the same mutation at the same time.

about two weeks ago

Navy Debuts New Railgun That Launches Shells at Mach 7

msobkow So... (630 comments)

So we're back to throwing rocks.

We just throw them very, very fast. :)

about two weeks ago

Ask Slashdot: Which NoSQL Database For New Project?

msobkow Big mistake (272 comments)

Telecommunications data is eminently suitable to schema table storage in any relational database, which with a little work, will let you index by the keys you intend to query by.

NoSQL solutions are better for unstructured data that doesn't come in predictable formats or value sets.

You need to take a step back and look at the problem before you decide on a solution. Don't be one of those idiots who tries to use a hammer to drive a screw.

about two weeks ago

Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

msobkow Non-touch devices aka (294 comments)

Non-touch devices, aka 99.9% of the PCs on the planet.

about two weeks ago

Mozilla CEO Firestorm Likely Violated California Law

msobkow Re:It's simple (1116 comments)

Well, seeing as I'm not a Christian and don't happen to agree with the anti-gay-marriage people, that's kind of irrelevant.

But there is no denying there are certain groups you just don't "mess with" because they'll come down on you in the tens or hundreds of thousands and fuck your life up. They most certainly don't believe in "freedom of speech" or the right to support whatever political views you choose.

Unless, of course, you agree with them. Then you can "free speech" all you like.

about two weeks ago

Mozilla CEO Firestorm Likely Violated California Law

msobkow It's simple (1116 comments)

Don't say anything about the gays. Don't say anything about the blacks.

Those two groups are so virulently nasty about anyone who "goes against them" that it's absolutely sickening.

You're better off kicking a puppy and being filmed doing so.

about two weeks ago

Apple: Dumb As a Patent Trolling Fox On iPhone Prior Art?

msobkow Re:Five points (408 comments)

My Palm Pilot had rounded corners, FFS. Even my calculator in University did.

about two weeks ago

Apple: Dumb As a Patent Trolling Fox On iPhone Prior Art?

msobkow Re:Seems pretty different, not a gesture (408 comments)

I'd say "no" primarily because of the bolt/barrel latches that have been holding doors closed for millenia. The idea of "slide to unlock" is obvious from such devices. "On a computer" is not innovation.

about two weeks ago

OpenSSL Bug Allows Attackers To Read Memory In 64k Chunks

msobkow I take it this is a server concern (303 comments)

As I can't imagine the servers I connect to being interested in snooping on my client data, I presume this bug is only a real concern for systems running services, not acting as clients.

about two weeks ago

Judge (Tech) Advice By Results

msobkow Zzzzzz (162 comments)

Zzzzzz..... *urp* *wake up*

Is the article over yet?

Wake me up when bozo boy learns to follow his own advice and be concise.

about two weeks ago



Politicians vs. "Regular People"

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 6 months ago

msobkow (48369) writes "Mayor Rob Ford of Toronto has admitted smoking crack cocaine while in a "drunken stupor." Yet he refuses to step down as mayor, and insists on serving out the balance of his term.

In private industry both North and South of the border, someone with a drug or alcohol problem is given three choices:
  1. Go to rehab while suspended from your job
  2. Resign
  3. Be fired

What do you think? Should politicians be exempted from the rules that apply to private industry?"



16/44.1 vs 24/192 audio

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 3 months ago

Some people insist the difference between 16/44.1 and 24/192 audio files is "all in your head", because some idiot mathematician says you shouldn't be able to hear the difference. Well, human ears aren't mathematicians, and I can most emphatically hear the difference even with these aging ears when using a $500 set of headphones.

I am absolutely in *glory* listening to The Grateful Dead's "Built to Last" album at 24/192 right now. The cymbals *splash* and the triangles *ring*. The maracas *rustle*. You can hear the *wires* of the snare drum rattling against the drum heads. And most important of all, the overall experience of listening is *soothing* instead of earache-inducing as with dithered audio. You should hear the sax I'm listening to right now -- that's one instrument whose sound I *know*, having played one for nearly 10 years in my youth.

My theory is that people who've been raised on digital audio have never learned to hear the difference between live instruments and digital dithering. They *can't* hear the difference, because they've never been exposed to and learned how to hear the sounds, much as someone who did not grow up amongst the Chinese can't hear the difference between some sounds in their languages.

The psychoacoustic training of one's ears is a very real phenomenon. If you've never learned to hear and listen for something because you've never been exposed to it, you grow to be *incapable* of hearing it without a *lot* of exposure.


I am a T-Rex

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 3 months ago

Smart ass punks think they know *nix history.

I cut my wisdom teeth on a VAX 11/780 running BSD in the fall of 1984.

I PRE-DATE the GPL -- Ricky Stallman was just touring campuses (including the University of Saskatchewan) with his "new" GPL idea when I was learning *nix coding and the ORIGINAL K&R 'C' language.

I've run, coded, and delivered systems on just about every dialect of *nix that ever existed. I AM A DINOSAUR! A T-Rex that will eat your OS/X crap for breakfast.

FORTRAN, COBOL, LISP, Algol, APL, PL/C, K&R 'C', ANSI 'C', C++ (from 1.0), Erlang, Java (from 1.0), Z-80 assembly, 6502 assembly, PDP-11 assembly, VAX assembly, -- hell, when I was programming the Z-80, I didn't even *have* an assembler -- I converted my code into hex and POKE'd it into the machine and saved the memory image to cassette tapes!

RSX-11, BSD on VAX, VMS on VAX, AT&T SVR4, VMS on Alpha, DEC Unix on Alpha, HP1000/A, HP9000, the first release of AIX on POWER, Minux, Linux from Red Hat 5 onwards (including RHEL/CentOS/OracleLinux, Ubuntu, Debian, SuSE, Slackware, and a couple other distros whose names escape me at the moment), every flavour of Windows from 3.11 onwards, Mach (which is merged into OS/X), QNX (now Blackberry 10), SunOS, Solaris, Amiga, Commodore 64, Commodore PET, Apple II, and a few more that I can't remember the names of at the moment.

So go ahead and try to "tell me", kid. I'll run rings around you in coding, hardware, and experience. I GREW UP WITH THE HISTORY YOU ONLY HAVE READ ABOUT. I've been programming longer than most of you pups have been alive!

(Can you tell I'm pissed that some 7-digit luser tried to tell me I'm "probably not even a programmer"? :P :P :P)


A Perspective on Privacy

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 8 months ago

No doubt people who've read my posts realize I'm concerned about the NSA spying issue, especially in light of the global cooperation in sharing information between spy networks run by other countries including Australia, New Zealand, Germany, and the UK. Even here in Canada our CSIS uses information collected on their behalf by the US NSA. It's already being abused, with information being fed to the DEA and from there on to police departments in the US, which has nothing to do with the original goal of "catching terrorists."

As my own ISP, SaskTel, leases servers in Florida, my email is monitored. My Google and Yahoo accounts are also monitored. There is no way for me to communicate any more without being tracked.

I've always expected this day would come, because when the internet protocol was designed, one of the key requirements were headers that identified the sender and receiver of data packets. There was no way around this, and there is still no way to avoid such identification (though it can be obfuscated to some degree by protocols like TOR.)

As computers have gotten more powerful, it was inevitable that humanity would have the capability to monitor all communications and track all users. It was just a question of when would it happen, and I must admit I'm surprised that we've come this far in my lifetime.

Unfortunately, it would seem the corporate-led fascists are the ones who are leading the charge. Governments whose leaders no longer respect the will of the people, nor even listen to the concerns of the people, but instead spin the lies suggested by their corporate masters. The world is all about the money nowadays.

Maybe some day we'll see a resurgance of humanism and a more equitable social order based on socialist ideals ala Star Trek, where people work for perks, not survival, but I don't think we're going to see that in my life time. Perhaps we'll never see it, because the more entrenched the elite owners of the corporate world become in their mastery of individual country's governments, the less likely it is that they can be uprooted and removed from the halls of power.

Still, I haven't given up hope on humanity.

I'm just very worried about where things are going to go in my own lifetime, never mind the lifetimes of my nieces and nephews.

Despite the tracking that is possible, people insist on using pseudonyms and aliases for their web accounts. I think that's fundamentally wrong. If you've got any sense of honour, integrity, and personal responsibility, you should not be afraid of having your comments and articles on the 'net associated with who you really are. In fact, you should be proud of who you are, stand up as an individual, and rant with enthusiasm against the evils of the world.

Sure you'll make mistakes. You'll say embarassing things. You'll shove your foot in your mouth up to the knee from time to time. And those mistakes will not be erased from the 'net.

But so what? Everyone is human. If anyone is in error, it's those who insist on judging people by their past mistakes instead of realizing that people screw up, learn from their mistakes, and grow to be better people because of them. I've certainly never worried about being judged by potential employers or friends on the internet.

After all, if I am anything, it is honest and blunt with my opinions. I am the kind of person I want to be and would want for a friend: trustworthy and blunt. I hate double-talking backstabbers with a passion, and wouldn't want to work for a company that would judge me based on my internet social life instead of my job history and quality of my work.

So rave on, rave on, rave on, I shall.


Mark Sobkow


MSS Code Factory 1.11.6160 Beta 6 (Ok, so I'm not done with betas yet after all)

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about a year ago

Beta 6 implements the table id generators for the RAM implementation and corrects a defect in the implementation of the RAM deletes.

It also corrects the use of table id generators for all of the supported databases (DB/2 LUW 10.1, MySQL 5.5, SQL Server 2012, PostgreSQL 9.1, Oracle 11gR2, and Sybase ASE 15.7.) Previously the client-side code that is generated for objects which incorporate BLOBs (or TEXT for SQL Server) would not have properly used the table id generators, but instead would have relied on obsolete/incorrect code for schema id generators of the same name.

All of the RAM and database implementations have regression tested using the CFDbTest 2.0 test suite.

Beta 6 and the corresponding test suite are available for download from http://sourceforge.net/projects/msscodefactory/files/.


MSS Code Factory 1.11.6008 - Beta 5 - The last of the betas

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about a year ago

I finally reached Beta 5 with my pet project. It now supports manufacturing of code for DB/2 LUW 10.1, SQL Server 2012, MySQL 5.5, Oracle 11gR2, Sybase ASE 15.7, and PostgreSQL 9.1.

I've finally achieved what I set out to do 15 years ago -- provide a multi/cross database coding tool that automates the mapping from an abstract business model to the specifics of the database while using all of the available performance tuning options of the database. This is far more challenging and complex than something like EJB3, which just generates dynamic SQL, not stored procedures and prepared statements.

Next up will be using the tool to write an application. I'm thinking of doing something simple and straight forward, like the core of an accounting system with general ledger, accounts, subledgering, and so on. During that development I may well add in the security support I've been planning all these years, but maybe not. Time will tell.

Regardless, I'm just peaking to have finally achieved this long outstanding milestone. :)


MSS Code Factory 1.11.5365 Beta 1

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about a year ago

The PostgreSQL 9.1 implementation has been updated to make use of stored procedures, prepared SQL statements, and every other performance-tuning trick I've learned in 30+ years of database programming. Subsequent betas will be released as additional databases are brought to the same level of integration as this release for PostgreSQL.

The PostgreSQL code should run rings around EJB3 and similar technologies that rely on dynamic SQL.

MySQL 5.5 support is as complete as it will ever be, and basic DB/2 LUW 10.1 support is also provided.

Download MSS Code Factory Beta 1 from SourceForge.


MSS Code Factory is moving right along

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 2 years ago

As you can see from the MSS Code Factory project site, things are progressing steadily with my pet project. I've just finished spending a couple of weeks reworking the PostgreSQL database IOs to use PreparedStatements wherever possible instead of pure dynamic SQL. At this point, dynamic SQL is only used for cursor-based reads and index queries which reference nullable columns; all other queries and accessors use prepared statements (static SQL.)

I haven't tested the performance of this new layer with PostgreSQL, and don't intend to compare performance of dynamic and static SQL as it would require keeping copies of and debugging both versions of the code. I know from previous experience with DB/2 UDB that using PreparedStatements can result in an 80% overall performance improvement for something like loading a model into a relational database.

Unfortunately most of the performance benefits would be lost when using the code for a web server, because you have to releasePreparedStatements() at the end of each web page served, because there is the possibility that a particular vendor's implementation of PreparedStatements might have data associated with it on the server end of the connection, and the connection has to be released after serving the page.

One of the biggest advantages of switching to static SQL is that parameter binding with PreparedStatements can handle variables up to the maximum size for the type, whereas dynamic SQL is limited by the size of the statement buffer accepted by the database (which used to be a significant limitation with DB/2 UDB 7.2, though I've no doubt that limit has been expanded or eliminated.)

A key point of the use of static SQL is that the only difference between the different databases now is the specific SQL functions used to convert strings to date-time types, so I'm going to be rolling out the support for the commercial databases under GPLv3 after all, rather than trying to leverage them for profit. The differences are just too negligable for me to believe anyone would pay for the privelege of using a commercial database.


I gave up and filed for disability

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 2 years ago

I've been working as a programmer since the spring of 1987. I've travelled all over North America, worked in many cities and with some of the biggest names in technology. I've had an absolute blast working with skilled and intelligent people who were not only good at what they did, but became good friends.

But it's time to face the facts: I can no longer work "office hour" jobs due to chronic migraines. Even with complete flexibility to work from home and at odd hours, I was barely able to get in 24-30 hours per week at the last company that was willing or able to work with me on the scheduling issues caused by the migraines.

I've therefore filed for disability here in Saskatchewan, and am in the process of getting approved for the SAID program (Saskatchewan Assured Income for Disability.) I used to pay twice as much in taxes per year in the '90s than I'll be getting under SAID, but at least it'll be subsistance living.

Don't make the same mistake I did of enjoying your income while you have it. Save and invest your money like it's going to be the last dollar you earn, because you never know when you're going to be hit by the proverbial bus and find yourself disabled. It's not fun, it's not a "safety net" as some claim, and it's a very depressing future to face.

But many of you will face that future, whether due to medical issues or accidents.

Good luck.


I'm going to try to keep Singularity One Systems, Inc. alive because every once in a while I do find a few hundred bucks worth of offsite programming I can do for someone. With the company, I can "bank" that income, and draw the $200/month I'm allowed to on disability over time, as well as running a few expenses like monitors and part of my internet/phone fees through the company instead of paying it all out of pocket.

Who knows? Maybe some day one of my pet projects will turn into a money maker. I've always said I'd program for a hobby if I weren't programming for pay, and that's where life is headed: hobby programming to keep myself from being bored silly in "retirement."



Joy oh joy

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 2 years ago

My Ubuntu 10.04.1 partition developed a serious case of USB problems after this morning's kernel update. When I rebooted to try to reset the USB devices, the partition table nuked itself.

So I'm reinstalling WinXP. This is NOT how I planned to spend my day!

Needless to say, I am NOT a happy camper...


Thoughts on the entangled-quantum future

msobkow msobkow writes  |  about 2 years ago

In the future, and a not too distant future at that, we will have quantum-entangled computers that work alongside or as add-ons to our existing computers.

Entangled quantum processors are good at the very class of computing problem that traditional CPUs suck at. And the reverse is also true, so we won't all be switching to quantum computers, we'll be merging the two technologies into a single box capable of tackling both classes of computing problem efficiently.

The issue to society is that current encryption technologies rely on the difficulty of calculations of precisely the type that quantum computers are good for. In the quantum era, it will be effectively impossible to encrypt data in a secure fashion. If you vary your keys fast enough, you might be able to maintain some semblance of security for a specific communications link to another node on the internet, but that would be about it.

That means that all the information on all the centralized data servers running behind every major business or website on the internet is readable.

I realized this years ago. It's one of the reasons I post publicly -- because I know the futility of trying to conceal or limit the access to what I post on the internet.

And it will happen in my lifetime, of that I have no doubt.

I contend that the only way to secure personal data in that future is to have personal servers located at your own home, with maintenance scripted so thoroughly that all the user has to do is pop in a backup cartridge each evening to receive the daily incrementals and weekly full backups of their life.

Instead of you entering in your information to a shared server somewhere, you would grant that shared server's processing systems read-only access to the relevant parts of your information, identified by some sort of unique id code/string (maybe even just a UUID) and the specific IPv6 address of the single host that is being granted that read permission.

Just for safety's sake, every time the application server read your personal information, an access entry would be logged.

It would be forbidden for any application server to retain the data. The sole source of your personal information would be your home node itself.

Sure, some might choose to contract the hosting of that node out to something akin to an ISP or a Google or a MicroSoft, or even an IBM node in a data center/cluster some where, but the key point is that the IPv6 address of each and every individuals information be assigned to one particular node.

I can not imagine any other way of protecting your personal data in the quantum future.

And that's the future I'm building towards.

Your node would assign each application server a corresponding signature, the UUID. The unique id number generator. Basic, simple, effective, and in production for a long time. But hardly anything akin to a password.

Maybe you'd want to look into how the data center at the host is physically architected to protect the token.

Just remember that with the quantum capabilities, passwords will be easily cracked and stolen by anyone with access to a backbone link that can have a good old fashioned network sniffer attached. You're rely relying on the request coming from that particular IPv6 address with the assigned UUID as the unique signature of the authorized request.

Implementing such a system means implementing common data structure standards across all platforms and all systems in due time. You'd choose your hardware/node provider based on your faith in the quality of the system they deliver as a whole.

So you could buy an IBM stack, an Oracle stack, a MicroSoft Windows stack, an Apple stack, or any one of the many Linux and BSD stacks.

Or even smartphone and tablet OS stacks.

Similarly, you'd choose your database service provider from the supported RDBMS vendors, your file system, and so on. Some stack vendors don't let you choose some options, but that's part of what you get when you buy into their stack.


The music industry has made the people half deaf

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

When a snare drum is struck, you should hear the rattle of the wires underneath the bottom drum head, not a tissue paper crackle.

When a triangle is struck, you should hear a bell-like ring soaring above the field of music, not a digitally compressed buzzing sound.

Pat Benatar's high register should soar with authority, not break up into digital noise.

When a cymbal is struck with a stick, it rings with a brassy tone; it does not break up into distortion.

But the past two generations have spent their entire lives listening to 44.1KHz/16bit samples or even more highly compressed MP3s. Their neural pathways have been trained to filter out the digital noise, and now they can't even hear the higher frequencies.

Back when vinyl was king and CDs had just came out, double-blind study after double-blind study proved that analogue was superior, and that the average person could hear the difference.

20-30 years later, the double-blind studies were repeated comparing 192KHz/24bit studio recordings to 44.1KHz/16bit CD quality audio.

Sadly, modern subjects can't hear the difference any more.

They've been robbed of their hearing, and they don't even realize it. Worse, they point to the new study as "proof" that I'm "delusional" and have even come up with some fancy name for the "delusion."

I thought I saw a class-action lawsuit against the *AA and the audio industry in the making for the loss of hearing by the general population, but people are in such denial of the issue that they modded every single one of my posts on the topic down to zero.

How sad. You've all been robbed and you'd rather claim I'm delusional than realize the new study proves you've been robbed.


Racknine and calls to numbers on the Canadian NDNC list

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

My number is on the do-not-call list for Canada.

I received one of the robocalls trying to send me to a non-existent polling station, presumably a call made by Racknine.

As Racknine has been unable to identify a political party as approving and being responsible for those calls, Racknine did not perform due diligence and therefore the call made was illegal under CRTC telemarketing restrictions. Only someone who is a duly authorized representative of a political party can contract a robocalling company to call someone who is on the National Do Not Call List.

I believe the penalty for violating the Do Not Call List without proper authorization or exemption status is on the order of $20,000 per call if I recall correctly.

Being able to provide a "burner" cell phone number and an obviously fake name as the "authorization" for these calls means Racknine engaged in wide spread illegal calling of OTHER people who are also on the national do not call list -- I will NOT be the only one who was called an on the NDNC.

I STRONGLY encourage any other Canadian who received such a robocall to contact the CRTC and register a complaint against Racknine. THEY are responsible for ensuring that their business operates within the guidelines of Canadian law.



Comparing MSS Code Factory 1.8 and 1.9 runtimes

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

I finally have some hard oranges-to-oranges comparison numbers between MSS Code Factory 1.8 and 1.9.

With the addition of the GEL compiler and runtimes and other performance tuning, 1.9 takes 1m25s to create MSSBam110 as of 2012.02.18.

The 1.8 release takes 3m25s to produce idential code for 1.9.

That's a 68% reduction in the execution time. Not bad. Not bad at all.

MSS Code Factory


Rest in Peace, Whitney Houston

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

I guess what really strikes me about Whitney Houston's demise is that she was only a year older than me.

I've faced some of the same problems she did in life, including addictions.

It could easily have been ME that died today instead of her, whatever the cause of her death was, and that hits home.


RIP Whitney.


It took several iterations, but I think I this isTHE singularityone.ca website!

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

The Singularity One Systems, Inc. corporate website is now available. Here you'll find information about the services we offer, our billing rates and policies, and information about the company itself.


The website has gone through three design iterations at least during the past week while I've posted a proposed design, waited for feedback from friends and interested parties, and tried to address their concerns.

I think this might be the website, finally!


Singularity One "To Do List" and "Done List" are now on the website

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

It's been a busy morning. I've been updating and editing my "To Do" and "Done" lists for my personal website and for the Singularity One Systems, Inc. pages. I had been keeping them as a merged list because I'm the one who has to work on them, but realistically a huge part of my "To Do LIst" is business stuff and shouldn't have been on the personal list in the first place.

Just click on the "To Do List" or "Done List" links on the left to see what's in the pipe right now.

The idea is to let people go to the company website instead of me having to post updates through other sites to let people know what's happening. The way I do it right now is kind of a hassle for everyone, including those who aren't interested in what I'm doing with the business.

Now I don't need to use forums and email lists to do my diligence on informing future customers and shareholders about what the business is doing. I'm sure that will be a relief to everyone who was on the "SingularityOneInterest" email list I keep.


What is a journal?

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

When Slashdot added the journals, one of the features was the ability to submit journal entries for stories.

But other than that, I've never read any guidelines for what goes in your journal. It's up to you what story you want to tell in your journal.

  • You could complain about work.
  • You could post about exciting programming challenges.
  • You could talk about your personal life.
  • You could talk about the challenges of starting a new business.

Really, you could talk about just about anything that isn't actually degrading and insulting to others. (Not to say that there won't be chip-on-the-shoulder types who look for something insulting in what others say, so you will offend people unless you say nothing of interest.)

The key to me is a journal like a business plan: It should be about you. It's your story.

Tell it to the best of your ability, and if you can, give people a laugh along the way. Everyone needs a daily giggle to keep their sanity.


http://www.singularityone.ca/ is now populated and answering HTTP requests

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

The proper corporate website for Singularity One Systems, Inc. is now up with the old content at


As soon as I can get the redirect taken off from singularityone.ca, I'll have the old prototype website at my personal account deleted.


Mark Sobkow, CEO

msobkow msobkow writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Mark Sobkow, CEO
Singularity One Systems, Inc.
A registered Saskatchewan corporation.

Has a nice ring to it, doesn't it?

The corporation was registered with Saskatchewan's Information Services Corporation on 2012.01.27, and the articles of incorporation were received back on 2012.02.01.

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