Ted Cruz: Stupid or Evil?

Since this is a nerd blog, Your JoeDog tries to avoid politics. Afterall, who gives a shit what he thinks, amirite? As you may have guessed, that’s a segue. You know what follows that segue, don’tcha? That’s right: politics.

Today we will discuss a particular senator from the great state of Texas. Your nerdblogger has never been to Texas so he’s not sure if it’s great. Texans tell him, “Don’t Mess With Texas” so, um, “great state” it is!

Texas is represented by a particular senator whose mind droppings may interest the readers of this blog. Those mental farts provide useful insight into his character and the policies he’d like to enact. Unfortunately, they don’t tell us much about the senator himself but this much is certain: Ted Cruz is either the dumbest motherfscker on the Internets or a diabolical genius.

A couple days ago, Cruz dropped this loaf on the Internets:

When you regulate a public utility, it calcifies it — it freezes it in place. Let’s give a simple contrast. The Telecommunications Act of 1934 was adopted to regulate these [pulls out an old rotary phone]. To put regulations in place and what happened? It froze everything in place. This (rotary phone) is regulated by Title II. [displays an iPhone] This is not.

That’s right, Senator Dingleberry claims the Communications Act of 1934 kept land lines in rotary stagnation while smart phones have thrived, free of government’s heavy hand. Funny thing. Smart phones are regulated under the same jurisdiction as rotary phones. Ever hear of the FCC? It was created by the — wait for it — Communications Act of 1934 and it has the power to regulate cell phone providers. As a sitting senator, he probably knows that. Afterall, he’s on the subcommittee of Communications, Technology, and the God Damn Internet — no, really, that’s the subcommittee’s actual name … we’re told, anyway.

Net Neutrality has nothing to do with changing the Internets. It’s about keeping them the same — exactly the same. It’s about ensuring ISPs can’t extract fees from content providers, throttle competitors or marginalize small enterprises like this little nerdblog. It’s about treating the Internets as a public utility. It’s about ensuring all content providers operate on an even playing field — may the best ones win.

Your JoeDog is told Ted Cruz is smart (he’s not sure if that’s true, but that’s what he’s told.) If Senator Smarty Pants is indeed an intelligent man, then he’s lying to you in that video. He’s intentionally distorting reality in order to promote a political agenda. He’s creating “Death Panels” for the Internets in order to appease his political benefactors. And that, my nerd blog friends, is worse than being stupid.

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Ted Cruz (R-Retard) Gets Splained By The Oatmeal

Ted Cruz recently compared Net Neutrality with Obamacare. They’re exactly alike if by “exactly alike” you mean “have nothing in common.” The Oatmeal tries to explain why the analogy is flawed. That’s probably an impossible task. You can’t make a senator understand a concept if his financial contributions depend on his ignorance. Anyway, enjoy the strip….

[The Oatmeal: Dear Senator Ted Cruz]

UPDATE: Gizmodo weighs in 

UPDATE: Pr0n stars weigh in

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AI Reporting

Your JoeDog is a Big Fan of artificial intelligence. His pinochle game represents one foray into the field. The computer bids based on its results experience. Your JoeDog can’t predict how it will bid a particular hand. It looks for experiences that resemble its current hand and it bids accordingly. Unfortunately, it still plays programmatically. As such, it can never be better than this nerd-blogger.

CBS Sports and Yahoo are doing interesting things with AI. Their fantasy football sites use artificial intelligence to summarize millions of games each week. The software analyzes lots of data and composes articles much like a human reporter. They only fail the Turing Test due to a contemplation of scale: A rational person soon realizes there aren’t enough humans on earth to produce that many articles by Tuesday morning.

There’s a more personal reason why Your JoeDog likes these cyber reporters: they think highly of his coaching skill:

Tonzie Crushers benefited from smart coaching this week. Coach Fulmer left Chris Johnson and Justin Hunter on the bench in favor of Frank Gore and Robert Woods, who were both expected to score less.

These great decisions boosted Tonzie Crushers’ final score by 22.1 points, which just made the final result that much more embarrassing. Putting Gore in the staring lineup also gained more points than any other coaching move this week, making it the Volkswagen Start of the Week.

Well this week. Last week they thought he was a moran

 

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Programmers….

A physicist, engineer and a programmer were driving down a mountain pass when the brakes failed. The car started to accelerate and they were soon screaming into the valley. Hanging on for dear life, they smacked the guard rails several times. Fortunately, they came across and escape lane and they were able to navigate up the hill to a stop.

The physicist said, “We need to model temperatures resulting from friction to determine why the brakes failed.”

The engineer said, “I have a case of temperature sensors in the trunk.”

The programmer said, “Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. We need to get the car back up the mountain and see if the failure is reproducible.”

 

 

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So Which Is It?

A bug or a feature?

 

 

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My Dilbert Moment

This morning Your JoeDog received a form. Exciting! … wait a second. That’s not exciting. That’s more work!

Indeed.

He had to fill it out and deliver it within Large Corporate Bureaucracy. There were two different delivery options:

  1. Interoffice messenger
  2. Fax machine (they still exist for some reason)

The fax option contained these special instructions:

If sending via fax, do not send original. Retain a copy of the completed form for your records.

dilbert

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Please Don’t Use Comments To Alter Functionality

“Holy shit!” Your JoeDog exclaimed.

“Why do you swear so much?” an emailer emailed this blog. “Young readers don’t need to be exposed to that.” Listen, if your kid is reading this site, then maybe it’s time to buy him a football. By the time he’s old enough to care about these topics, he’s already heard a lot of vulgar language….

“Holy shit!” Your JoeDog exclaimed. “That’s a code salad!”

Our enterprise backup guy is just like your enterprise backup guy. He’s involved with every system, every project and every meeting yet all he does is put ones and zeros on tape. Generally he calls your attention to meaningless minutia but once a decade you learn of something important. Yesterday was once a decade. Backup informed Your JoeDog that the NetBackup client wasn’t installed on a new server.

“That seems unlikely,” Your JoeDog said. “Puppet puts it on every server.” Puppet is our configuration management server. It installs software and writes configurations to every server in the enterprise.

“That’s what I thought,” Backup said. “But it’s not there.”

To prove that Puppet puts it on every server, Your JoeDog showed him the code. We’ll examine that code after the jump

Continue reading “Please Don’t Use Comments To Alter Functionality” »

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Baby Cow!

baby-cowMeet the newest member of the JoeDog family. This is Baby Cow — with her markings she looks like a little tiny baby cow.

She was abused by a Mennonite farmer who tried to breed her. When that failed he tied her to a pole along a highway with a sign that read “Free bulldog.” By chance, a member of the Long Island Bulldog Rescue happened to see her. She stopped and called the state agency which enforces puppy mill laws. The farmer was fined.

That night Your JoeDog had three beers at a local brewery. Mrs. JoeDog saw an announcement on the Long Island Bulldog Rescue’s Facebook page. They needed someone to foster this dog. Your JoeDog reluctantly agreed because … well, did he mention three beers?

When Baby Cow arrived she was in sorry shape. Her eyes were cloudy and her rear legs were both injured. At first the vet suspected glaucoma but it turns out they were irritated by her lashes. Baby Cow’s legs were another story. She had two torn ACLs, probably the result of standing long hours on top of chicken wire. Puppy Mill breeders frequently stack their dogs in chicken wire crates. You don’t want to be the bottom dog. That one gets peed and pooped on by the dogs above.

She’s already had one operation to fix her eyes. Aren’t they beautiful? She still needs two more to fix her rear legs. LIBR promised to pay for those operations in January. They are promised grant money from a large national pet store chain. (Your JoeDog is unsure if he can mention the name so he’ll keep it to himself for now.) If the grant falls through, he’ll try to raise it himself.

Your JoeDog may have reluctantly agreed to take her, but he’s not letting her go anywhere now. As Mrs JoeDog says, “That’s Your Baby Cow.”

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Valgrind: Apology Edition

The things Your JoeDog will do for you….

A couple weeks ago he complained about Valgrind (and probably a whole bunch of other stuff but we’re talking about Valgrind now). His snippet was leaking memory and valgrind was unable to identify the leak. The leak was manually identified in this function:

ARRAY
array_destroy(ARRAY this) 
{
  int i;

  for (i = 0; i < this->length; i++) {
    xfree(this->data[i]);  
  } 
  xfree(this->data);
  this = NULL;
  return this; 
}

While we freed the elements of the array, we never freed the array itself. The leak is fixed like this:

ARRAY
array_destroy(ARRAY this) 
{
  int i;

  for (i = 0; i < this->length; i++) {
    xfree(this->data[i]);  
  } 
  xfree(this->data);
  xfree(this);
  this = NULL;
  return this; 
}

Today Your JoeDog was coding on the train again.  Before he boarded, he downloaded the above code onto his snazzy Linux laptop.  He was turning caffeine into code when wouldn’t you know it? Another stinkin’ memory leak. “What the hell,” he thought. “Let’s give valgrind another try.” Unfortunately it wasn’t installed on snazzy Linux laptop. For some reason, Amtrak’s proxy won’t allow downloads larger than 10MB. Stupid Amtrak.

That’s easy to bypass. Your JoeDog established an ssh tunnel from his laptop to this webserver and proxied to the Ubuntu repository.

 

--2014-10-25 10:15:13--http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/pool/main/v/valgrind/valgrind_3.10~20140411-0ubuntu1_amd64.deb
Resolving localhost (localhost)... 127.0.0.1
Connecting to localhost (localhost)|127.0.0.1|:11111... connected.
Proxy request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 15078790 (14M) [application/x-debian-package]
Saving to: ‘valgrind_3.10~20140411-0ubuntu1_amd64.deb’
100%[=============================================>] 15,078,790 290KB/s in 73s
2014-10-25 10:16:26 (202 KB/s) - ‘valgrind_3.10~20140411-0ubuntu1_amd64.deb’ saved [15078790/15078790]
 Funny thing. That copy of valgrind found the leak. Guess where it was? Give up?
ARRAY
array_destroy(ARRAY this) 
{
  int i;

  for (i = 0; i < this->length; i++) {
    xfree(this->data[i]);  
  } 
  xfree(this->data);
  //xfree(this);
  this = NULL;
  return this; 
}

In order to illustrate his first post on valgrind, Your JoeDog commented out the fix he told you about. Well, this second copy of valgrind found it. So what gives?

1. Valgrind works and I’m sorry I busted on it.

2. RedHat’s version doesn’t seem to work but Ubuntu’s does.

 

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Check Your Inputs: SQL Injection Edition

Here’s a question which tends to make Your JoeDog cringe: “So, what do you do?”

It’s often asked when he has a drink in his hand. And when he has a drink in hand, he doesn’t want to talk about work. Sometimes the inquiring person hears the answer, parses “computers” and wants to know why their laptop is slow. Honestly, Your JoeDog has no idea. Occasionally, he meets another nerd who wants to talk shop.

Recently he met a web nerd, the kind of web nerd who suffers from illusory superiority because he lacks the skill to recognize his ineptitude. These guys often contain a conspiratorial streak. This guy was no exception. The conversation soon shifted to hacking and web security.

Web Nerd puked a word salad of vulnerabilities but his beloved PHP was exonerated. “You can’t inject SQL because the mysql libs don’t allow multiple statements,” he said.

Couple points. 1.) the PHP mysql_ functions are deprecated. Astute JoeDog readers use PDO or MySQLi. 2.) You can still do injection as long as you keep it in a single statement.

Let’s try that after the jump!

Continue reading “Check Your Inputs: SQL Injection Edition” »

Posted in Community, On The Job, PHP, Programming | 2 Comments



Recent Comments

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