Hacking the Segway: Cool Link o’ the Day

So, you’ve always wanted one of those dorky uber-cool Segway scooter things, but you don’t want to spend five grand on an electric scooter? There’s an answer for you!

Using off-the-shelf components and a little electronic know-how, you can build your own self-balancing scooter for a fraction of the cost of a real Segway unit. It makes me wonder, really, if there’s not a market for a gizmo like the Segway with a more reasonable price tag.

The only thing the prototype is missing is blue LEDs and maybe some spikes. Oh, and some barbed wire–it needs barbed wire. A Mad max version of a Segway just sounds like a lot of fun.

(Thanks to enoelie for the link…)

Oh, so THAT’S the problem…

So I’m up beating my head against my Linux box, which I’ve been struggling with all evening. I have Samba and atalkd installed, but I can’t reach it from the Macs or the PCs in the house–can’t can’t can’t. i can see it, but I can’t log on…

I was heading to bed, about to concede defeat after four hours’ bloody struggle, when i had a flash of inspiration. Maybe I couldn’t log in because the …firewall …was …preventing …network …access?

Checked the firewall settings. The AFP and SMB ports were open. Nope, that’s not it…

…but what the hell, I’ll disable the firewall completely and see what happens.


Goddamn goddamn goddamn. Seems like when you tell Fedora Core 2 to open ports in the firewall, it doesn’t actually open the ports, it only says it does. (Err, mostly–it really did open the http and ssh ports, wtf?)

Well, there’s four hours of my life I’ll never have back. Fuck Linux in the ear with a jagged metal dildo, anyway. At least with Windows, you expect it not to work.

So anyway, it’s working, and I’m off to bed, with a weird sort of smug self-satisfaction at solving a problem I shouldn’t have had to solve in the first place.

Oh, and by the way… Apparently, I’m a strange attractor, whatever that means

Mmmmm, Linuxy goodness!

So I got my system to work in Fedora Core 2 with the 2.6 kernel finally. I just went through the X configuration file and removed all references to /dev/psaux, and damned if it didn’t work.

Now, why it worked with the 2.4 kernel but not the 2.6 kernel is beyond me. I don’t even know what /dev/psaux does. But hey, it’s up and running, and I’m typing this entry using Mozilla for Linux even now!

I’m also setting up telnet and ssh and apache and all kinds of other goodness, so Shelly can get into this machine and experiment on it. Her new job requires her to be able to troubleshoot Apache servers via telnet, so this’ll make a good test bed machine for her to play with, and no real harm done if something blows up.

Anyway, since I have Apache running on here, anyone got any ideas about what kind of Web content we should put on it? It’ll be semi-private, as you can only reach it if you know the IP address (which changes periodically as it’s on cable modem with DHCP), so my mind immediately runs to naughty places, which will come as a surprise to…well, nobody.

Gaaaah! And geeky fun stuff

First, the Gaaaah! Updated my Red Hat 9 system to Fedora Core 2 a couple nights ago. It works, buuuuuuut…..

…it won’t start X if I boot from the newest Fedora kernel. It says it can’t locate the mouse–even when I use a generic PS/2 mouse, a USB mouse, and a serial mouse. The mouse is configured right (I’ve run the configuration several times), and the mouse works fine in console mode. It also works fine when I boot using the earlier kernel from the RedHat 9 install. The X error log complains it can’t open /dev/psaux, even though the correct file is in /dev. Anyone know what gives?

And the geeky fun stuff: An archived screen capture of Google’s main search engine page, circa 1960.

Several disjointed random musings

Things that make you go “Hmmm”

Client: I don’t like these Apple optical mice.
Me: Why not? What don’t you like about them?
Client: This will be the second time I’ve had to replace my mouse.
Me: Really? What’s wrong with it?
Client: There’s a rat somewhere in my garage. It keeps eating the cord.

God bless Florida building contractors

I may have a job for a client running telephone and/or cable TV cables through his house. Brand-new 4,400-square-foot, half-million-dollar place and the contractor…

…forgot to run the cable for phone and television…

…and doesn’t want to pay for it. Unfreakingreal.

And in good news…

…we signed the lease on the new apartment today! It’s a gorgeous 3-bedroom loft, with a beautiful space in the loft area for setting up the bondage equipment. It’d make a wonderful place for hosting small, intimate play parties. I can hardly wait to move in.

Well, THAT was interesting…

Shelly is back in town! I’m absolutely ecstatic. Boston didn’t quite work out, but things in Florida are shaping up in unexpected and wonderful ways, so it looks like Florrida’s where we’ll be staying…at least for the next few years. We may yet end up in Boston, though not for another 2-4 years, depending on how her school goes.

I had a dream last night that I was bar-hopping in Ybor, and I came across the last living Australopithecus robustus, an early ancestor to man, sittiing on the sidewalk. I asked him, “Considering that you’re five or six times stronger than us, how do you suppose we won the evolutionary game and you lost?” He pondered for a while, and said “I can’t think of a reason.” “That really says it all, doesn’t it?” I replied, and wandered off.

The two best things I’ve read tonight

From merovingian:

“If the audience is composed of broccoli and rhinoceroses, stop giving your speech. You’re not going to get your point across, no matter how well you express yourself.”

That works so well as a metaphor for some of the things going on in my life right now, on so many levels, it’s just amazing.

And from a conversation with a dear friend:

“well – [family]’s not something everyone wants. intimacy scares a lot of people…they want to love from a distance. And it’s pretty impossible to do.”

Not said in response to anything specific, per se, but certainly germane to some of the things I’ve been observing lately.

Many major things are afoot right now. More later.