O.K. this is definitely a double whammy of why I prefer FreeBSD.

A few days ago I installed KDE on Ubuntu, which added the Kubuntu boot splash. When I installed the *rest* of KDE via synaptic: on the next boot it broke GDM and my Gnome session until I did an apt-get remove followed by an apt-get install of the gdm and ubuntu-desktop packages. This is deffo one of the reasons why the distinction on BSD between /usr and /usr/local is a good thing ™.

This after noon I clicked through one of Gnomes settings bit for languages, and thought perhaps it would have a way to merge my preferences for U.S. and ISO formatting. It asked if I wanted to install a few dozen more language packs for English and German, since I had taken the liberty of adding the German language packs. Also told it to prefer the British English and standard German languages above standard English (rather than ignored); American English being the primary. Being American, you never have to worry until you start spelling in different dialects. That added export LANGUAGE=”en_US:en_GB:de:en” to the end of my .profile; which I moved to an /etc/profile.d script.

‘lo and behold on reboot, the entire Gnome desktop is in German…. and despite that being very different than my limited reading vocabulary, I still can figure out what the frig I’m looking at! Just don’t ask me to pronounce it properly lol.

nights log

So far it has been a fairly uneventful night. I’ve been contemplating taking up another language, I’m interested in both Latin and Spanish, but have started studying neither yet. Mathematically, I would have to favour Spanish… because shall we say, while exposure to Spanish is fairly easy for me, Latin is a bit of a dead language! Really the only languages of value out here, is what *passes* for English, and of course Mexican / Puerto Rican dialects of Spanish. Considering the simpler grammar, studying Spanish in the long run: might also help to improve my German, which is useless at the compositional level, but occasionally handy at the reading level. I think the entire world would agree though, that I should work on improving my English skills, or at least stop the mixture of US/UK elements.

For time passing, I setup sudo on my laptop; had done it some years back, when I was running PC-BSD, but haven’t used it since an updated overwrote my sudoers file, as I had forgotten to backup /usr/local/etc. I knew that PC-BSD was taking ownership of /etc/rc.local and making overwriting changes to sudoers, but didn’t use sudo enough to care lol. That’s one thing that has always pissed me off about PC-BSD, yet I have always respected about the *real* BSD projects: a concept of user edited files. You can play with /etc/rc.local and /etc/rc.conf on FreeBSD without getting biten, on PC-BSD you should use an rc.conf.local file: OpenBSD style. I’m always running the latest FreeBSD STABLE branch on the laptop, in this case RELENG_7, and anxious to see RELENG_8 become a practical reality. Heh, even on the OpenBSD box (which as sudo preinstalled) I don’t bother using sudo that much. What I like about sudo however, is the ability to skip ‘su – root’, and limit access in a more general way—to specific commands. It’s probably one of the best programs of its kind written, since su.

In getting playful, I split up my word lists (:help spellfile) in vim, into smaller organized chunks, and added a few more entries from FreeBSDs system dictionaries. As time goes on, I might expand things further, based on the kinds of texts I end up editing. All of my text editing is basically done in vim, so it also does most of my spell checkin’ by virtue of that. Of course, Vi IMproved has an excellent spell checker, and perhaps the only one I’ve met that could be considered superior to MS Words. While I utterly hate word processors, and find them to be useless paper weights; I generally consider Microsoft Word the best known example of spell checking lol. I’m happy to say though, that I’ve evolved somewhat in the past eleven or twelve years ;). Now if only I could do something about the having-to-type-as-fast-as-i-can-freaking-think-problem, maybe my writing might actually be worth something, someday lol.

The ‘Burbs was on TV, and coming on in a little bit is a good film that I really haven’t seen in a long time. It’s called Throw Momma from the Train, best described as a comedic remake of Strangers on a Train. I plan to log off, lay down, and try to relax for a bit…. hopefully relax. Probably will try to dig up another quick snack, something light but useful.

The internet connection has been offline for the last couple hours, first found out it was up when an instant message popped up on me mid-sentence! Hmm, got about 10 minutes until the movie starts, so it’s time tos tart winding down. I’ll probably be awake early tomorrow, assuming I get any sleep before work….. sigh.

What I love about English

Unfortinetly I missed a great classic with Bette Davis, but at least I got to catch
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, and Fort Apache is on now.

This is the one thing I actually like about the English language:

Clark: Hey. If any of you are looking for any last-minute gift ideas for me, I have one. I’d like Frank Shirley, my boss, right here tonight. I want him brought from his happy holiday slumber over there on Melody Lane with all the other rich people and I want him brought right here, with a big ribbon on his head, and I want to look him straight in the eye and I want to tell him what a cheap, lying, no-good, rotten, four-flushing, low-life, snake-licking, dirt-eating, inbred, overstuffed, ignorant, blood-sucking, dog-kissing, brainless, dickless, hopeless, heartless, fat-ass, bug-eyed, stiff-legged, spotty-lipped, worm-headed sack of monkey shit he is. Hallelujah. Holy shit. Where’s the Tylenol?

Christmas Vacations a hilarious holiday film, but it reminds me. If I ever end up conducting something to scale of an old fashioned Griswold Family Christmas, I’ll have to remember watch out, for things going so horribly wrong, that even a SWAT team comes crashing through every oriface of the building hahaha. Clark Griswold tries, but some how, every thing just gets royally screwed up lol.

Clark: Where do you think you’re going? Nobody’s leaving. Nobody’s walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We’re all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We’re gonna press on, and we’re gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny fucking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he’s gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse.

Ahh, that was a good rest 🙂

Since there is nothing on TV, I am utterly bored, yet to tired to do much with code for the night… I’m working on an idea I’ve been thinking over on/off recently.

Awhile ago, I decided to read a few style guides for English. Not that I’m likely to ever follow one >_>. I’ve elected for at least one American and one British based. Because, A.) I am an American :-P, and B.) if you have a problem with color and colour in the same paragraph, blame it on to many people in [SAS] living outside of the USA hahaha.

I would very much like to improve the quality of my written English. But there is not really likely to be much change, as I still have to be an abusively quick typeset. I type with ten fingers available to me, and usually have to type about as fast as I can think the words in my head. The mos tcommmon problem sbeing thsi kind! But I can’t really help the fact, that I have got to type and get my thoughts written down, before I end up getting interrupted and forced AFK (Away From Keyboard); which usually leads to interrupt upon interrupt, until I wish my head context switches better then my PC.

Who knows, maybe I’ll someday prove my friends theory, that I’ve never heard of a semi colon, to be wrong ^_^. In fact, I have heard of it, but I spend most of my time writing it like this:



One comforting thought, the Defense Language Institute classifies German as a Category II language for how hard it is for an English speaker to learn. The common Spanish and French fitting into Category I, Russian, Greek, and Hewbrew into Category III, and the mind boggling Chinese and Japanese into the topper, are Category IV languages.

That makes me feel a bit better… lol.

I’ve heard that a lot of people never reach native fluency in a language, I doubt I’ll ever do so either but I would settle for knowing as much as an elementary school student. I’m generally able to read German well enough as long as I’ve got access to a dictionary but not so good at composition.

I’d like to fit some time for study into each day, even if it’s not a great amount of time.. It’s better then nothing. I’ve been looking at adding reading to my daily routine, don’t know how well it will go. I figure, the more I read the more chance I should hopefully have of getting a ‘feel’ for it.

When I was learning to read English, I rmemeber I had to write out every word I couldn’t read, 3 times plus a sentence out of it. Needless to say, I didn’t like that part of school ^_^. It’s a good idea though but I’m not about to try likewise in German, while I arguably care more about getting spelling and grammar right in German then in English. If I did some thing like that, my hand writing would get even *worse*.

As it stands, writing English by hand (the conventional pen/pencil on paper method) is an atrocious combination of printing letters and cursive letters. Plus because not only am I accustomed to writing as fast as I can think, which results in many ‘lazy pauses’ as my mind backtracks to where my hand left off. My way of writing tends to reflect my minds way of thinking, speaking habbits, and preferences on ‘style’ much more so then the formal ‘laws of English’ allow — I’m a person, not a cyborgnetic English Teacher ^_^

I could just imagine… 20 or 30 laters, writing in Gerglish? (What ever you want to call a mixture of German and English words, writing, and pronunciations) To top it all off, haha that would put the final nail in my hand writings coffin.

urxvt & utf-8

Found an interesting problemo tonight with using vim in rxvt-unicode. Since the German umlauts and the old double-S (ä ö ü ß) are a bit tricky for me to make without a copy/pasting then where needed I usually use the alternative (ue oe ue ss) where possible. Since vim 7 has spell checking, I’ve got spelllang set to handle US and British english plus German in the spell checker. Which really works very nice because my spelling is a bit of a hodge podge for those ‘differences’ in English spelling.

While I was working on the translation last night, I employed both Vims spell checker and a translator program to help me with the grammer. Vims spell checker has the lovely ability of being able to correct things, taking the form I can easily get out of a US QWERTY board and replacing with the proper characters (ä ö ü ß), I knew there was some thing I loved about vim xD

The only thing is, trying to open the file again with vim caused it to display weird, all of the umlauts replaced with strange characters. I checked Vims idea of the files encoding and it was UTF-8, just like my system locale settings should be saying.

Yet, (n)vi, cat, and other utilities were showing them fine. Setting the terminal encoding in vim or launching it with LANG=de_DE.ISO8859-1 got them to display properly but still senseless :. My ~/.zshrc sets LANG to en_US.UTF-8, why nothing seemed to work right i dunno. Forcing urxvt (rxvt-unicode) to run with the C locale set (LC_CTYPE=”en_US.UTF-8″) got it working fine.

I’m not familiar with that end of C++ but I wouldn’t be surprised if it relied on the same setlocale() routine as C apps tend to. The FreeBSD handbook said to set LANG and MM_CHARSET and not LC_* variables for the environment. I’ve fixed it so the system kicks urxvt off with the right locale settings so the problem is fixed.

still a little odd imho lol

Dropped off around 0630 last ngiht :

Spent msot of it hacking on the SOP Rewrites and chatting with friends. The room clearing section is quite difficult, it needs to be sufficantly normalized which is a sticky operation. Trying to balance between short and sweet with completeness makes managing its verbosity a tricky one to.

I also spent some time doing a little translation work. I quite like trying to translate small portions of text between English and German, because it gives me a chance to get a greater feel for the language. You’ve got to learn to think a different way when using another language, I generally try to be as accurate as I can but enjoy the ‘soft spots’ where the idea becomes clear but, trying to put express it in the other language is hard.

I would love some day, the opportunity to learn it in a lot more depth. I’m generally able to read well enough when I have a dictionary to help, but… Trying to express things well is a bit more challenging. It takes time and experience to learn a languages grammer. It’s not quite like learning a programming language… Given decent documentation I generally can pick up most common programming languages in an hour or two depending on it’s size, I especially love it when some kind of Backus–Naur Form (BNF) listing is available, makes learning a programming language much faster lol.

Conventional languages for people on the other hand, ain’t quite so simple :

Days progress

Null (0)
Eines (1)
Zwei (2)
Drei (3)
Vier (4) – tis one hard to remember lol
Fuenf (5) – properly fünf
Sechs (6)
Sieben (7)
Acht (8)
Neun (9)
Zehn (10)
Elf (11)
Zwoelf (12) – properly zwölf
Dreizehn (13)
Vierzehn (14)
Fuenfzehn (15) – properly fünfzehn
Sechszehn (16)
Siebzehn (17)
Achtzehn (18)
Neunzehn (19)
Zwozig (20) – I wonder if Zweizig would be interrupted as 20. Seems that ‘zwo’ seems to be used in place of Zwei at times to avoid confusing people.. Probably foreigners lol.
einetausend (1000)

For the most part German numbers seem pretty logical and seem to follow the same convention style as English numbers. I.e. 15 in English is Fift-Teen, rymes with 5th (fifth, Viertel) a fraction and teen being a fairly standard suffix for any thing between ( > 10 && < 20 ). So Siebzehn makes sense for Seventeen. Its more or less 'Seven Ten' which is basically what a 17 is. Or maybe it could just be my backwards mind that finds this all so logical ! hehe I dunno. Larger numbers seen to follow a similar style but with a und (and) in the middle and changing suffixes as you got, teens, twenties, thirties and so on. But each comparable German suffix seems to end in ‘zig’ except for Dreissig (dreißig, thirty). Much like how in English many of then have a ‘ty’ suffix often preceded by an r or ir. Fourty “four’ity” (Vierundvierzig), Seventy (Siebundsiebzig), or Fifty (Fuenfundfuenfzig). Quiet logical imho. Sechhundertzweiundzwanzig (626) looks about right to me aside from being a mouth full but who says I know any thing. Six hundred Two and Twenty – logical. It seems while we use a decimal point . In German a comma , seems to be used and pronouced. I wonder how 600,400.01 would be spoken if 3.04 would be like ‘Drei Komma null vier’. I think thats some what grammatically correct. ‘Komma’ always seems to be capitalized, the first word being capitalized the way I wrote it is probably an English’ism. I’ve yet to learn much for German grammar and punctuation. Instead concentrating on basic spoken communication and reading. I’ll worry more about it when I have a rough understanding of how words work out, then I’ll worry more about sentences and phases. So far though the only languages I know my way around well is C and English +S lol sorry to say but I think its in that order 😛

Well after stints of packet loss and high pings with the ol’ISPs DNS server things seem stable again. Since I made a bit of a booboo when I uninstalled Gaim (pbi) to try to install it via pkg’s so I could try installing an X-Fire plugin and OTR didn’t go well. Note to self always use ports for any thing big ! I’ve been learning to live with Kopete. It’s got the level of configuration options one would expect from a KDE program. While Gaim feels like a super enhanced version of the old (pre trijon or w/e) AOL client. Kopete feels more like the regular MSNMSGR client. I prefer Gaim really, even the AOL client was alright until they made it bloat ware.

The biggest reason to use applications like Gaim, Kopete, Trillion e.t.c. is they support many protocols ! Gaim is plugin based dunno about Kopete. Generally a Multi-Protocol Instant Messenger (MPIM :P) Client. Should support the basics, AIM, MSN, Yahoo, Google, ICQ, IRC (if not the best clients…), Jabber e.t.c. Kopete is pretty well rounded but I prefer Gaim personally. After customing it to behave more Tabed IM based (ala aim style) instead of multi-window heck (bye bye msn style) it’s quite good. It *THANK GOD* lets you change the style of message displays – VERY IMPORTANT change it quick if you IM a lot, trust me ! Default font should be the standard for KDE in my case it was Sans Serif. To me it’s a no frills font, changed it to Bitstream Vera Sans for now. Usuually I try to keep logged into AIM do to a few issues with X-Fire on Unix/Linux/BSD/Mac 8=) Most of the [SAS] uses both and formerly AIM was required for member ship and a Live Ops Warning/Deployment system IIRC.

Really I think I prefer IRC which is good for a more casual chat. FRI IRC is more a “Chat Room” thing then One-On-One 111 commu for most usage (afaic). MSN’s ok, offical clients emotes were ok when I used it, if they are like what MSN Gaming Zone has now its great. AIM *had* a good client but emotes that sucked. What I like about aim more then msn is you can have an addy people can reach you at but they don’t need to be added to a buddy list to contact you. Which is nice since I prefer IMs to phone calls and one can always restrict it. MSN/X-Fire follow what may be a more traditional model. Only buddy list contacts can reach you. I’m tempted to try ICQ some time but I don’t know any one who uses it often, most of my friends use ether MSN or AIM but mostly we all settle on X-Fire haha.

Given some recent issues I’m very tempted to try and start learning Germain. At least to read/write it, I know at one point I was getting very good at reading signs in MoH =/. Germany has always interested me, in a number of ways as have a few other countries cultures. Maybe it’s because of my studies about WWII and military history. The Germain language I’ve never learned much of, like many people I pick up a few words here/there in other languages in passing. Needless to say its one of the countries I’d like to vist if I ever had a world trip. I wouldn’t want to live outside of the US but it would be nice to travel around the world a little. Any country that has H&K Weapons is worth a vist I’m sure 🙂

I know all of 1 or 2 words in Japanse, maybe same in Chinese. 3 or 4 words or more of Italian most of which I can’t say in polite convo and wouldn’t dare try to spell. Me and my brother are two of the only people I know who can say FU in another language hehe. Not that we do, I don’t and he prefers the English version just like our Mother (her favorite 4 letter word 8=) ). A couple of words in Spanish and French (more ladder then former). I know Italian, French, and Spanish are all very simular and learning one would make it easier to learn the others. I don’t know how many words I remember in Klingon, dang pronoucing those right are pesky. Most of my exp. With the German language has been from my WWII studies actually, so it’s mostly related to military words/terms. Not very good for a conversation really. Need less to say if it’s not a computer language I’m not really multi-lingruel. Being an American and a Computer-noid. I mostly encounter people that speak English or Spanish, ocassionally both. When online usually its ether French if they don’t speak english, some times Germain but more often German/English then French/English speaking. I’ve met about 2 or 3 people that are really good with many languages in my net time. While I have nothing aganst France, Germain interests me more <_< Being able to read the language and understand it would be my first goal, writing it second and being able to speak it properly would have to be done along side the first if I’d ever manage it. One thing I do like about my native language is that it’s so screwed up, any native speaker of English will know what your talking about. Sure US/UK is diffrent for a number of things, I remember a funny post Rouge once made about UK English taking over the world or some thing hehe. Yet the language is so nuts at least on this side of the pond. From some of the issues I’ve seen in translations I’m not sure how two people of the same country can understand one another some times, especially in a language like Italian. I know in the US people talk diffrent from place to place in prounced style and spelling but it’s not much till you hit slang. IMHO proper English makes about as much logical sense as horse dung rotting on the wall. So obiously with my opinions of my own language what harm is there in learning about another for fun and function ? If ones going to try and learn another language may as well be one that one may enjoy. I don’t think there is any thing worse then English unless your talking machine code. I’m also a kind of nut, I know C++ is more used but I know more C because I enjoy C better. I think I should start splitting entries because they tend to get huge and I usually edit them shortly after if I find a reason. Think I’ll start trying to learn the basics over the weeki. I’ve got a Biology test to finish, a history test to do again. The USPS lost it I guess b/c it didn’t get to the school. A “tea” trip in the morning s’like a quarter to 0400 here and gotta be out before 1100. Best go to bed before the dog disowns me. It’s funny, for some reason after about 2100 they start staring at ya as if to say whens bed time ! LOL Sleep, sweet sleep now if the ol’brain would shut the frig up.