Freeing a Nook Tablet from the bonds of slavery.

So, my wife has a Nook Tablet. I bought it for her a little under 2 years ago as a gift, and she loves it. She's a big reader, and this thing has done a great job of feeding her addiction. Over the time she's owned it, she's asked me to install certain apps on it, some of which we just plain couldnt. See, the Nook is an android tablet, but it's extremely limited. It doesn't have the standard Android Play Store. And it wont let you install any apps not signed by Barnes and noble. Which is a shame, its a decent device otherwise.

RedHat Summit: Throw away your SAN.

This year's been good to us at the College, and our RedHat rep's got me and my boss on yo a panel at Summit. Talking about real-world cases where customer's have switched to RHEV. So we got to go to RedHat Summit for free, in Boston, MA. I don't travel much, so its always enjoyable to get out and see new things. I've never been to Boston, so that was an experience in itself, even though I didnt exactly have time to sight-see. Boston seems like a very nice place.

Tragedy...

As a former cross-country runner myself, I'd just like to send my thoughts and prayers out to those affected by the Boston Maraton bombing today. Such a joyous and exciting event, destroyed by tragedy. For what?

ClearOS, home firewall, and vpn gateway.

You may have gathered.. I'm not your average user. So when I needed a router for my house, it's no surprise that Linksys didn't fit the bill. I ran a linksys router for a while, the damn thing kept dieing on me. I'd reboot it once or twice a week to keep things online. I finally built, out of an old server, a Smoothwall Express box. It worked wonderfully, and i never had another issue.

Hacking the planet.

-- Update --
I may be late with this, but I wanted to update this with some more news. First, this appears to have gone nowhere, and I thought I'd go do some reading to find out why. Anonymous themselves are reporting that this was not them, and it was in fact, most likely fraudulent. Whether it was or wasn't, it certainly doesnt seem to have done a damn thing, so whatever.
-- end --

My growing dislike of Verizon Wireless

I've been a Verizon wireless customer for... A long time. I think it was around 2005 that I switched from my old Nextel service to Verizon. It was right after Sprint bought Nextel. At the time, My wife and I had switched between all of the major carriers that offered service in our area in search of one we liked. ATT was crap in our area, Nextel had good service, but they tacked all manner of hidden costs on to the bill every month. Verizon worked out perfect. Other than taxes, we paid what was advertised, and the service worked when we needed it. Unlike ATT.

Host your own "DropBox" like service.

So, it's no secret. I don't like "The cloud". I mean, "The cloud", has its uses, but I dont like cloud storage, and I dont like the false security it gives people. But it's damn convenient! Services like Dropbox offer some pretty nice features. A free 2gb storage container that you can put whatever you'd like on, available from damn near every internet connected device you might own. Mac, Linux, Windows, Android, iPhone. They have a client for every major platform. That's pretty sweet! So here's why I dont use it. It's not yours. Think about it this way.

DerbyCon 2012

Wow

That's the best way I can start this post. Wow.

I'm in the passenger seat of our rented VW Jetta, tethered to my galaxy nexus, typing this up on m tablet because I wanted to get some of these thoughts down before I started to lose them. Sorry for typos, touch keyboards aren't my speciality.

What a great conference! I already can't wait for next year. DerbyCon has got to be the humblest hacker conference around. I got to listen to the greats talk about their coon new projects, and then go out to eat, or drink, with them in the evening.

Security is Hard!

I am a sysadmin. So whether I call myself a security professional or not, security is fused with my daily tasks. I build servers, I administer servers. Web servers, database servers, identity servers. Servers that make the college I work for.. Work. If i don't keep security in mind, at worst our private data could be stolen, or our servers could be turned into spam zombies. So its important to keep a certain level of paranoia. It's a pain in the ass, I'll tell you that, but in the end, its worth it. I've had servers breached, trust me, its no fun.

Repairing a water damaged Samsung Galaxy Nexus.

Some time ago, around the beginning of the year, Google and Samsung released the next Nexus phone. The Galaxy Nexus. A number of my co-workers were waiting for this thing to release, so they could get one. Currently 4 of my co-workers have them, one on AT&T, the others on Verizon.

One of them accidentally dropped his in a toilet... A few weeks after he got it. He made an attempt to dry it out, without dis-assembling it, and it failed, so he went to Verizon who happily charged him full price to replace it.

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