Thursday, November 10, 2016

T minus 18 or something

In regards to this article: Daily Beast -- 75 Lawsuits Against President-Elect Trump

It's nice to have a few things be fair (Perhaps even more so since the actual reason is partisan response to a Bill Clinton scandal.) Trump's Presidential immunity to civil suits will only apply to any scams he engages in after he takes office.

` ` [Bill] Clinton and his defense team then challenged Jones' right to bring a civil lawsuit against a sitting president for an incident that occurred prior to the defendant becoming president. The Clinton defense team took the position that the trial should be delayed until the president was no longer in office, because the job of the president is unique and does not allow him to take time away from it to deal with a private civil lawsuit. The case went through the courts, eventually reaching the Supreme Court on January 13, 1997. On May 27, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled against Clinton, and allowed the lawsuit to proceed.[3] Clinton dismissed Jones's story and agreed to move on with the lawsuit. ' ' -- [ /wiki/Paula_Jones#Initial_lawsuit ]

My main point of interest in this is the cases related to Trump University. [ Trump University’s Star Student: ‘It Was a Con’ and Trump University of Utah ]  Given my general and often justified lack of faith in the system, I have zero confidence in the prosecution's ability to make anything stick.  I suspect Trump will say that he had no knowledge of how the operation was actually running.  In a just Universe, this would not so easily let him off the hook because gross negligence that allows for the defrauding of a whole bunch of people is surely almost as bad as intentional malfeasance of the same.  But it's clear we don't live in that Universe.  In a Universe that valued facts, running a scam of this kind would surely count against a supposed "man of the people" since he, at the very least, rented his name to nefarious companies that defrauded "the people".

The bad part of that will probably be:  the continued American tradition of mostly ignoring the victims of these scams.  And if the public is briefly forced to acknowledge them, then they handwave a say that the victim "deserved it" -- they "should have known better".  And the thing is--this completely shifts the focus away from the con artist.  It creates a safe space where they can continue to run their scammy games.  It allows them to get elected President, for example.

Note-- the 75 lawsuits part is a bit misleading: article points out that *most* of the 75 are basically junk and meritless for example:
` ` More than a dozen of the 20 ongoing federal cases where Trump is a defendant are actual nonsense, filed against the future president along with co-defendants Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and even Walt Disney, on behalf of seemingly mentally-ill plaintiffs. (Anyone can file a lawsuit.) The complaints in the wildest cases include allegations of kidnapping by the president-elect and his son—members of the supposed Illuminati. ' '

Furry cows moo and decompress.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

This entry is kind of like a pastebin.  I recently managed to successfully install Cockatrice on my machine.  This is a lot more elaborate than your standard Windows install as it requires building it from source.  

So I have written down the method that just worked in the hopes that I won't have to re-guess it next time.

Note:  See the date-time of this post.  This worked on my system at this time.  This may not work years into the future as it often happens that different bits and pieces of different Linux distributions get updated (or not) in different ways.

Also, I haven't done a lot of these.  Use at your own risk.


Mon 14 Sep 2015 11:49:38 PM CDT ------------
On Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, these are the packages that you have to have installed before you can build cockatrice *including* servatrice:

sudo apt-get install build-essential g++ qtmobility-dev libprotobuf-dev protobuf-compiler libqt4-dev libgcrypt11-dev

You probably need this repository added:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-sdk-team/ppa && apt-get update

You want to be able to build with the cmake-gui  so you need the 'cmake' package and then probably also the package 'cmake-qt-gui' if installing the first package does not automatically install the gui.

sudo apt-get install cmake cmake-qt-gui

You also need Qt5.  To get it, you have to search for an offline installer (b/c the Online installer is rubbish) here:

After d/l-ing the file, chmod u+x and run it because the Qt people seem to think this is Windows.  Whatever, it makes no real difference.  You wind up with a folder in your home folder with the necessary code to compile/link against.  (You will need to know if your OS is 32 or 64 bit.  But you should know that, really.)

You might also need the package

sudo apt-get install libqt5sql5-mysql

The install directions say you need that to run servatrice with a database. Don't know what that means yet.

For sound to work, you also need

sudo apt-get install libqt5multimedia5 libqt5multimedia5-plugins

I don't care about sound right now, so I have not bothered with it.


d/l the cockatrice source from the button on the right side of this page

extract it to a folder, then cd into it in terminal

mkdir build

cd build

cmake-gui &

Then, in the gui, click Generate.

Then, for the Qt5Widgets_DIR setting, specify the path to the Qt5 stuff you previously downloaded via the offline installer.  And click to put a checkmark  in the box for WITH_SERVER setting, then click generate again and  cross your fingers.

If no errors, then in the terminal cd into the build directory and


and cross fingers.

if success, then 

sudo make install 

and you're golden.

You should now have the new commands:  cockatrice, oracle, and servatrice.

oracle is what you run to build your local card database .xml file (no pics yet, wait for the next part)

cockatrice is where you build a deck, and the actual game client itself.  Card artwork is downloaded on an as-needed basis.

servatrice is what you'll need to run in order to host a LAN game.

Furry cows moo and decompress.

Friday, April 12, 2013

The following is my reply to Veit's comment which was a reply to Kos on Veit's blog post at

I originally replied to him on his site.  But I'm guessing he didn't like what I had to say.  So I think he decided it would be better to delete it.  That's cool.  I'll just post it here:

Wyrd says:   
Your comment is awaiting moderation.
April 12, 2013 at 5:37 pm   

Veit wrote
maybe I should highlight the bit where I say that I disapprove of what they’re doing with their marketing.

Maybe I should quote a great line from one of my favorite music groups:
“You can’t shake the Devil’s hand and say you’re only kidding.” — TMBG

Veit wrote

I have ‘invested’ $2k in Product Launch Formula when I was a complete newbie, and boy, it was useless for a newbie without a list or a product or even any clue how to sell stuff online.

I have ‘invested’ thousands on dodgy coaching, I’ve had all the phone-calls from the boiler rooms, believe you me, I’ve been there.

Maybe you should ask for your money back. Or at the least, maybe you should call out those that scammed you.

Veit wrote

All I’m saying here is this:

don’t take the existence of “the Syndicate” and boiler rooms and IM-scams as an excuse for dumping babies, bathwater ‘n all that good stuff.

Frank Irwin Kern and his ilk are not babies floating in icky bathwater. There kinda like… little baby anti-christs floating in the blood of their victims… or something.

Veit wrote

There is a reason why they’re so successful,

Yes. The reason is because they lie and misrepresent themselves in order to sell people a dream that can’t ever really be delivered. And then they take the money and run. And you apparently envy them for their sales success. And for some reason you think it’s possible to have the one without the other. (false)

Veit wrote

and it’s worth studying what they’re doing (e.g. very effective use of sales-psychology), and then use it for good, not evil.

You remind me of Boromir making his case for how they should take the One Ring and use it for good. I think you’ve been seduced by the siren song of POWER.

Veit wrote

I’ve seen far too many people who say they want to learn how to sell, but they run the moment they sense there’s a pitch coming at the end of a seminar or a webinar.

As well they should! If I go to a seminar to learn stuff, then I expect to *just* *learn* *stuff*. I do not expect or need to have gone to a seminar only to be sold something at the end. That’s not right.

Veit wrote

Fer cryin’ out loud, if you want to learn how to sell,

Wait, I’m confused–was the mission here to have a successful online business or was the mission to learn how to be good at selling? The two things are related, sure, but they are definitely not the same thing.

Veit wrote

observe what successful sellers are doing and learn from it. And if it’s unethical, then don’t do it. But don’t say “selling is evil” and use that as an excuse

The reason why people often say “selling is evil” is that the reality is that selling, when it’s not in service of some actual valuable product or service *is* evil. And that’s what the Sturgeon’s Law 90% of sales is all about: selling you noisy shiny crap (or noisy, shiny, crappy ideas) that have no real value to anybody ever.

So: You’re right. Selling, in and of itself, is not evil. But the vast majority of those that rely heavily on salesmanship and selling are doing so because they don’t really have a product or service of value to sell. In this case, they sell the sizzle because they have *no* steak.

Veit wrote

for not doing anything or worse – complaining and whining about those ‘evil guys’ that are responsible for your lack of success (btw, that comment wasn’t directed at you Kos)

I often agree that complaining and whining are not very helpful. But actually vocalizing that “Hey! That guy over there! He’s a scammer!” or “dude! That thing I bought from that guy was utterly *useless*! Don’t buy from him.” That kind of thing is called: the market voicing its collective discontent.

Now, c’mon, Mr. Veit Business Professional: don’t you know that old maxim, “The customer is always right.” ?

And yet here you are.. trying to silence the customers and telling them that they should learn from the corrupt business practices of evil people. Shame on you. A wizard should know better.

Furry cows moo and decompress.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Copy error messages to clipboard

I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't just tested it. In the (should be) immortal words of the poster "From Windows 2k onwards you have been able to copy the text in error messages to the Windows Clipboard by pressing Ctrl + C, but Microsoft forgot to tell anyone."

Yes, it's true. I tested with an error message from my own code:

When that popup has focus, if you Ctrl+C, then Ctrl+V into a text window, you get:

AutoKeys.au3: HlprMkREWinActive
Unable to set The Raiser's Edge as active.

I haven't checked to see if it works with all MsgBox( ) type things, but it probably does.

Oh--also it turns out Windows NTFS since maybe NT 3.0 does support something like the Unix symlink. (Symlinks are different than .lnk files because, for most purposes, they are treated as a real file or folder. It allows for one file or folder to appear to exist in multiple names and/or locations within the filesystem without crufty wasteful copying.) In NTFS, they're called Junctions, and they only work for folders. (Apparently, in Vista, MS added some new feature that finally allows for full symlinks.) Google for 'sysinternals junction.exe'. Be very careful with them though--since they're transparent to most all the programs on the OS (i.e. treated as actual folders), it's easy for a lot of accidental damage to happen.

Furry cows moo and decompress.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

It's that time of year

VLC tells us it's that time of year again...

It's kinda cool. And kinda weird. It changes its icon from the standard to this with the Santa hat on sometime around the start of December and it'll stay this way for, I think, the whole month.

Furry cows moo and decompress.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Household with Children Complexity Calculation Formula

I just came up with a way to calculate the complexity of your household based on the number of children in it.

First, take the average of all of your children's IndividualComplexityValues (see below) in years of all of the children in your care, including those that are only there part time. This will form the base. (Note if the result comes out to a value less than or equal to 1, then add 1 to it, then multiply it by itself, and use that as the base.

Now, raise that number by powers based on the IndividualComplexityValues of all of the children in the household.

IndividualComplexityValues are calculated like this: For children aged 1 to 10: it's just their age. For very tiny children/babies aged less than one: it's 13 minus the number of months old they are. For children age 11 and above, it's one tenth their age.

For example, let's suppose you have three children in your household of the following ages:
11 months, 4, 16. Then the average would be:

(0.9166, + 4, + 1.6) / 3 is approx = 2.1722.

So, to figure the Children Complexity Value we would perform:

2.1722 ^ ( ( 13 - 11 ) ^ ( 4 ^ 1.6 ) ) .

So that would mean that your over-all household complexity is just about... 5.212 times 10^196. And of course, in my case, the Complexity calculation comes out to something far beyond perl's ability to calculate so it just answers with "inf" for infiity. Seems pretty accurate to me.

Furry cows moo and decompress.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Mary Anning lyrics, Artichokes, Skeptic Mix Tape

There's a Skeptic Mix Tape in existence now at As you might guess it has skeptically themed songs from a variety of artists. This one song, Mary Anning seems particularly furry to me right now because of it's, for lack of a better term, Beatles-esque sound. I checked out the artist's site, and initially couldn't find any lyrics there. (Later, I did find them, but that was after I'd already taken the time to write them all down. And mine are more complete than theirs.) So:

"Mary Anning" by Artichoke

Do you know Mary Anning?
Born on a southren shore.
Her father, Richard, was a cab-i-net ma-ker.
And Richard died too early.
And left the Anning's poor.
But lucky Mary Anning found an ich-thy-o-saur!

By circa 1820,
She ran a fossil store.
She put the bones together
For the col-lect-ors.
And science was the province
Of men of noble birth.
But I'd take Mary Anning
Over those stuffed white shirts!

// Ancient life that sleeps as fossils... //

She was walkin' the cliffs
On her own by the sea.
She was wonderin' if
There were shapes underneath.
There were men with their cash
But that's not what it took.
She could read every line
On the ground like a book.
She assembled the bones
Of the past
In cement.
And she sold them in town
For a couple a pence.
And she showed all the men
How the bones could connect.
Though at first some would scoff
They would grow to respect...

Do you know Mary Anning?
Born on a southren shore.
Her father, Richard, was a cab-i-net ma-ker.
And Richard died too early.
And left the Anning's poor.
But lucky Mary Anning found an ich-thy-o-saur!

"How did you get in here!?
Show me what you've found, Dear.
Hello, isn't that queer?
Do you have any more?"
"How did you get in here!?
Show me what you've found, Dear.
Hello, isn't that queer?
Do you have any more?"
?reeuq taht t'nsi ,olleH
?erom yna evah uoy oD
"How did you get in here!?
Show me what you've found, Dear"

About the reversed lines: I used Audacity to un-reverse the reversed/back-masked part towards the end of the song. :-)

Furry cows moo and decompress.