Switched to Pingoat

I’ve been using Ping-O-Matic for a long time, but in the last 2-3 days, it has simply not been responding.
Switched over to Pingoat — hope that works better.

LifeHacker Nails It: Rules of Engagement


  1. Engage. Participate. Be fully present. No auto-pilot.
  2. Meetings and multiple appointments are a fact of work-life; the least we can do is be on time so they can start on time and our peers are not kept waiting.
  3. Respect the attention of your peers. Come prepared means come prepared.
  4. Always have a pen and paper for note-taking. First, you respect others who are giving you information by acknowledging it, and secondly youÂ’re expected to capture it, and follow-up; forgetting is not an option.
  5. Whatever your role is, youÂ’re expected to be the expert in that role. Own it, and donÂ’t be shy about it. Stake your claim proudly. (This was part of the no bench-warmers philosophy.)
  6. When you say youÂ’ll follow-up on something, do. If itÂ’s not going to happen, say so. People trip when you sweep stuff under the rug.
  7. Own up to your mistakes and be okay with them. Making mistakes is perfectly fine for we all make them. However huffing and puffing about them with excuses and justifications is not fine. Get over it (we already did) and just correct it.
  8. Communicate. We have found that relying on mind-reading doesnÂ’t work that well for us.
  9. Trust and be trust-worthy. Much easier when Rules 1 – 8 are honored and we all keep it real.

ng this out now to be posted prominently.

GrabPERF: Outage — 20:39-21:09 EDT October 26, 2005

For reasons that I have yet to discover, my outbound connection to the Internet appears to have been down between the times listed in the title.
As I have said before, my connection is less than “professional grade”, i.e. “don’t do this at home”.
If I find a cause, I will update.
I apologize for the incovenience.

Found a MONDO huge problem with mysqldump in MySQL 5.0.15 — it locked the tables. Totally.
I backup the database by taking a dump 4 times a day, 12 hours apart on two machines.
The Web server machine, where I was testing MySQL 5.0.15 prior to the production upgrade, is using the version mysqldump that shipped with that.
I need to read the docs and disable the table locks.

Ok. Does Gutter Helmet just not get it?

Ok, finally got some action from the people at the Customer Service Centre for Gutter Helmet towards helping us fix the final drip between the house and the gutter. This drip is, of course, right over the back door and targets anyone leaving the house when its raining.
The Customer Service Centre was having some trouble reaching their technician. Lucky for them, the technician was across the street, working on our neighbour’s house. Maybe we should have told them…?
So, I call Samantha, and Samantha goes across the street to ask the gentleman to call in and speak to the rep handling our case.
Samantha called me after she did this and said that the technician did everything short of growl and bare his teeth at her.
Look, Gutter Helmet: your on-the-ground “technicians” are the face of your company (except for the fast-talking sales dudes). This is the third — yes, THIRD — technician we have encountered who has had the customer service skills of a molotov cocktail.
We don’t ask for much; a little civility is all that is required.

“Yes ma’am. The Customer Service Rep got a hold of me and I will come over as soon as I’m done here. Thank you.”

That’s all it takes.

UPDATE (to the update): When Tracy from the Customer Service Centre called me back to follow-up, I told her that the technician had been and this had been confirmed by Samantha.
I then told her about the technician’s attitude. In fact, it was the same technician who had come out previously, and given us some attitude. And the bad news was, he had also given Tracy some attitude.
Maybe this will be the final post on this topic.

Upgrade to MySQL 5.0.15 Complete

Wait! Didn’t he say he had done this already?
Yup. But forgot one stupid little step. You have to re-compile PHP to work with the new MySQL 5.0 libraries. I tried to restart Apache and it barfed all over the PHP module with MySQL library module mismatch errors…or something like that.
Done and the system is now using the right MySQL libraries.
Usual caveats about system weirdness apply. Operator weirdness is your own issue.

Gada.Be — Web Performance Art

I have never seen Web performance graphs as art, but this one is unique.

Gada.Be -- October 25, 2005

You could almost compose music around this pattern.
I have heard from Chris Pirillo about some of the work he has been doing to try and improve the performance of this site. It’s hard to get something right when no one else has done it before.
But I still hear the music of this graph in my head.

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