April 11th, 2004



I tried for about 10 minutes to get my TiBook to use its external VGA, which I'll need for running my presentation in Orlando, but then realized it was going to be a total pain.

I read all about m3mirror, m6mirror, the -benh kernel, the radeon driver, differences in XFree versions, open firmware setting up framebuffers if vga is plugged in at boot time, kernel boot parameters to setup the external VGA, etc...

In the end I calculated the risks and figured there was a good chance I'd spend the next 2 days trying to figure it out, to no avail, and my slides would never get done.

So now I'm booted into OS X where both monitors were working immediately.

But OS X just pisses me off to no end. Everything just works in OS X hardware-wise, but it feels so. goddamn. slow. Linux flies in comparison on this laptop. I also hate the keyboard navigation, even in "full keyboard access" mode. If I hold down control-shift and arrows to select words at a time, it moves to the beginning/end of the line, not word. I can't minimize the damn software updater window. What's the point of that? Instead I have to drag it off-screen.

To be a little fair to Linux, the automatic hardware detection is getting pretty damn good on x86 lately. It's just this laptop (powerbook g4) that gives me so much grief. Well, I guess my old laptop (a dell) was a bitch too, the first time. Years later I put Linux on it and it was absolutely painless, once the software caught up with the hardware.

Starving... off to breakfast. (my 24 hour flu seems to be fully gone...)


So I'm just banging out my intro slides for the MySQL conference. Ya know, the one to whet people's appetites about why they should care about LiveJournal's backend....

I hadn't looked at the logs in a while, but damn it's busy lately:

40-50M hits/day
766 requests/seconds at peak hour.

And those are all dynamic mod_perl requests.... the static files are Akamai.


OpenOffice for Mac sucks.. help?

So I'm happily making my presentation in OpenOffice (on Debian) figuring I'll just go ahead and run it from my Mac laptop later. After all, OpenOffice runs everywhere, right?

But sensing trouble, I decided to give it a shot early.

Turns out OpenOffice for the Mac sucks. There's no native build, only an X11 version, and probably as a result the fonts totally suck. I'd be embarassed to project those ugly glyphs onto a wall. (OpenOffice 1.1 on Debian is totally beautiful, though...)

So my next thought was: OpenOffice can export as PowerPoint. Maybe I'll find a free OS X PowerPoint viewer somewhere on www.microsoft.com. No such luck. (does one exist?) But I didn't happen to catch something pretty ridiculous: Microsoft Office is $400! Damn. You can buy a whole computer for that.

At this point I'll keep using OpenOffice and hope to find another computer to use, or just bring a little Shuttle system with me. Oh shit, I realize now they probably provide a computer to use. Phew. But I'll keep this rant.