Thoughts from the caffeine primed mind of Nathan Smack.

Ohio LinuxFest

| Friday, September 11, 2009

The following is an excerpt from

The seventh annual Ohio LinuxFest will be held on September 25-27, 2009 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Hosting authoritative speakers and a large expo, the Ohio LinuxFest welcomes Free and Open Source Software professionals, enthusiasts, and anyone who wants to take part in the event.

The Ohio LinuxFest is a free, grassroots conference for the GNU/Linux/Open Source Software/Free Software community that started in 2003 as a large inter-LUG meeting and has grown steadily since. It is a place for the community to gather and share information about Linux and Open Source Software. A large expo area adjacent to the conference rooms will feature exhibits from our sponsors as well as a large .org section from non-profit Open Source/Free Software projects.

Defense Wins Championships

| Friday, August 21, 2009
WOW! A very good friend of mine, Rachael Hinkle, scored the winning touchdown in the 2009 WFA National Championship Game this past Saturday, August 15th. The photo (taken by Daniel Elavsky) is Rachael in the end zone. You can watch the play unfold in the video. Rachael works very hard and is a dedicated and skilled athlete, as well as uber intelligent :)

Way to go Rachael! Congratulations to the St. Louis Slam!

WFA 2009 National Championship from WFA on Vimeo.

ActiveX Annoyance

| Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Several of the web based tools that I use at work require the use of Internet Explorer, and one specifically required an ActiveX plugin. Since installing that plugin, I have been getting the following ActiveX Error message:
"Could not create the control {00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000}. Check that it has been installed on your computer and that this page correctly reference it." This was very annoying because sites like Google Reader would spawn dozens of these pop-up messages.

I finally decided to do something about it. Most of the forums that I came across (like this one) suggested deleting the npmozax.dll file from the Mozilla Firefox installation directory. While this method was reported to have worked, there were some unanswered queries about what the possible side effects could be from just deleting the file. I decided to try simply disabling the plugin (Tools > Add-ons > Plugins). It worked, and now I don't have to even think about the possibility that some other component might fail due to a dependency on that file.

Now that the annoying pop-ups have stopped, I can continue using Firefox as my default browser. Google Chrome was a good alternative, but it is not supported by my VPN proxy, which causes problems when I am working remotely.

Linux, it is definatly on my radar.

| Tuesday, March 10, 2009
I have known for quite some time that Linux is an undeniable member of the OS smorgasbord. Having read up on various distros, and dipped my toes in the FOSS OS pool, I realized that I really need to get on board. So, I downloaded one of the Linux distributions commonly acknowledged as very user friendly, Ubuntu GNU/Linux. What I managed to do with this handy OS, was to run it full bore from a live DVD and save the all but lost file archive from my grandma's defunct Gateway Profile. The Windows XP installation had become so corrupt, that it would become unstable (even in safe mode) after only two or three minutes. Once the rescue operation was complete, I very simply installed Ubuntu right over Windows never to look back. I am currently contemplating either using this machine as a file server, or donating it to someone who could really use it.

Here is a fantastic article in two parts about converting to the Free computing way of life...Living Free with Linux: 2 Weeks Without Windows, by Preston Gralla