I am working on a Vista machine for a client, and was trying to update things - the firewall was turned off, windows update hadn't been run in a while, etc.  Windows Defender was complaining about not updating for the last 8 months, and currently giving me an error of 0x8024402c.  I searched around on the internet, and found people talking about uninstalling defender, restarted the BITS service, running windows update manually, etc.  None of that worked - all reported hexadecimal code errors. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on November 18, 2008, 10:29 am | Read 27677 times | Comments (3)
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I have been working on an interesting project for a customer of mine - and as is with lots of his projects, end up seeing lots of internet headlines while working on the projects.  This particular project involves tracking what things people are talking about and searching for.  One source of the results comes from google trends, which shows the current top 100 most frequent searches, as well as historical trends.

Lots of searches that show up on the top 10 list are things that I wouldn't ever search for (I am not too surprised based on the content (It seems that a substantial number of people sit and watch tv and type in phrases that people say), but the format of the searches is interesting too).  I noticed today that the search frequency for green bean casserole was on the top 100 list, and that it has a sharp peak right around now each year, and then a smaller peak at Christmas time.  I've only had a couple different kinds of green bean casseroles in my life, and I don't recall any of them being very good.  (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on November 17, 2008, 11:39 pm | Read 14258 times | Comments (3)
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I have been quite behind in my magazine reading, and this morning I caught up to August (2008 - at some points, it has been necessary to specify the year when saying how far behind I am).

There is an interesting article in Dr. Dobbs, by Scott Ambler, regarding methods of estimating costs of software development, and whether the typical, fixed price model is even ethical. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on November 14, 2008, 9:46 am | Read 6545 times | Comments (4)
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We signed up for a new phone number for dealing with rental stuff, and bought the numbers to go on the sign today.  Three hours later, we got our first call.  Crazy.  I haven't gotten around to getting it on Craig's List yet or anything. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on September 30, 2008, 5:57 pm | Read 12437 times | Comments (25)
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Our family had been emailing around about the wind and rain from a recent storm, the power outages, and water in our basement, and a couple questions came up, and I thought I would post them here, that perhaps other people are interested in the goings on at our new house. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on September 17, 2008, 9:03 am | Read 7484 times | Comments (0)
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Lots of fun.  Maybe some day.

200 square foot house.  (seems to require Internet Explorer)

$5000 tree house, with cable TV...

The Moore's house.

Posted by Jon Daley on September 4, 2008, 9:55 pm | Read 4969 times | Comments (0)
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Our new house has fairly long hot water lines to the kitchen and bathroom, so I was looking for different solutions to getting there to be hot water quicker.  I researched some tankless heaters, and for the kitchen and washing machine (on one trunk) a small heater (12 amps) would have worked well.  But, for the bathroom, a good sized heater (with our 45 degree incoming cold water) would have needed a 200 amp service to the house, with 60 amps (220 volt) dedicated to it.  So, an awful lot of upgrades, not counting the tons of ongoing electricity. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 19, 2008, 1:34 pm | Read 139939 times | Comments (19)
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We are back at our new house, and had the first taste of our water (unfiltered).  We got the bacteria test results back today, which said the bleaching of the well was successful, and no coliform bacteria exist any more (or at least, less than 1 part per million).  The "MetalMaster" will arrive tomorrow, but since our water is almost clear at the moment, the filter is primarily for taste.  The existing copper pipes do have a significant amount of iron in them, so probably we will have more iron some days, or some seasons, and then the MetalMaster will be helpful in removing all of it (it is rated at twice the amount of iron I have seen in the water previously). (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 14, 2008, 4:23 pm | Read 4929 times | Comments (2)
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This started out as a reply to an email to Heather's parents, but I figured maybe other people are interested in the thought process about water quality.


Posted by Jon Daley on August 2, 2008, 10:24 pm | Read 39716 times | Comments (2)
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I think I have written before about DenyHosts, but this evening, it prevented somewhere around twenty thousand individual hosts trying to login to one of my servers. The hackers have gotten smarter - that they used to just try from one host, which was trivially blockable, even manually. But, thanks to denyhosts (and the fairly easily trackable behavior by the hackers), they think they get a couple chances to guess a password before being blocked. Note, that I say "think", because they actually don't get any, due to the way they are doing it. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on July 8, 2008, 11:40 pm | Read 56819 times | Comments (19)
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I had delayed posting this since I think people were getting tired of hearing about each house that we put an offer on.  But, now that this offer has been accepted, and I don't expect too much trouble with the inspections, I figure it is safe enough to post. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on July 8, 2008, 1:29 pm | Read 8042 times | Comments (5)
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So, what happens when you take a Handspring that died one day and wouldn't recover after various testing, and leave it in a box to take apart one day to see if it was anything obvious, but mostly forget about it for a year, and then pick it up and put batteries in it?  It starts working, of course.  I had tried every trick I knew about, hard resetting, leaving the batteries out for a week, taking out the expansion card, etc. without any luck.

So, I don't know what happened, nor how stable it currently is, but we had only made a backup to the local memory disk, and not to our hard drive, so we can at least get stuff off of it now. 

Posted by Jon Daley on May 13, 2008, 6:51 pm | Read 2241 times | Comments (1)
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I had turned down some work the other day, and as I thought about it more, realized that I was ready to hire someone to work for me.  I talked to a dad at church, and he thought it was a good idea, and his son was interested as well.  It turns out that he has less programming experience than I thought, but his dad has been pushing for time that is spent learning basic stuff doesn't have to be paid, so that works out for me... (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on May 3, 2008, 12:28 pm | Read 2384 times | Comments (1)
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I found a link to this application a while ago, but never took the time to check it out.  Fortunately, it stuck in the back of my mind that there was a handy application, although even handier that I had saved my bookmarks from an old computer, because I couldn't remember the name, and I couldn't find it with a fair bit of google searching.  So, I'll add this post, both to help future searchers, and also to say what a wonderful application it is.  I don't know python, but could figure it out enough to fix a login bug due to SourceForge changing their login page.  Since I found the bug, I assume that means no one else is using it, though the bug does only apply to new users, so maybe there are a bunch of current users. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on May 1, 2008, 4:22 pm | Read 3213 times | Comments (6)
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I just updated Usermin, and so wanted to make sure that my custom modules didn't break.  And in the process, poked around through my webalizer module, which shows the things that people type into search engines to end up at our blog as well as the number of hits for certain pages.  Some of them aren't surprising, but quite a few are interesting to see. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on April 19, 2008, 12:45 pm | Read 11313 times | Comments (5)
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