I upgraded this blog to the latest WordPress version (2.7). The only change that you’ll notice is a new “threaded comment” functionality which allows you to reply to other comments. I had to make some small tweaks to this site’s theme to enable the new comment stuff. I suppose this would also be a good time to post a link to my theme files just in case you’re interested in using it on your blog.

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Rants, The Sky is Falling

I just saw an article in Science Daily which talks about a “Digital Dark Age.” The introduction sums up the idea:

“What stands a better chance of surviving 50 years from now, a framed photograph or a 10-megabyte digital photo file on your computer’s hard drive?”

The article mentions 8-inch floppy disks as an example. Remember those, from the 1980s and ’90s? They were the floppy disks which were actually “floppy,” not those 3.5-inch ones some old people still use today. The “floppy disks” of this era are CDs, DVDs, and flash disks, and you may not foresee them going away any time soon, but it’s inevitable; what happens when those are phased out for “newer, better” storage formats? The year is 2020: where will you find somewhere to plug in your now-ancient USB flash disk (let alone your circa-2001 floppy disk)?
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Kenya, Miscellaneous

I live next to nowhere in Kenya, so Internet access is pretty limited. I am able to access it at work, but it’s slow and only available during the day. Luckily Safaricom, one of the local cell phone companies, just rolled out 3G technology across Kenya. My cell phone isn’t very fancy so I picked up the USB modem instead. When the Safaricom employee asked if I had brought my laptop for them to configure I replied, “Um… no. I’ll do it myself…” So this is the culmination of my ensuing research.

Using a Huawei e220 With Safaricom Under Linux

Safaricom\'s Huawei e220The Huawei e220 is a USB HSDPA modem capable of some crazy speeds like 7.2 megabits per second, though Safaricom advertises the max on its network as being around 3.6. If you look around on the internet you’ll find a dearth of information about using the Huawei e220 under Linux, as lots of mobile phone companies all over the world have been providing these units for a few years. The software required to use these under Linux has changed a lot of the years, and it’s actually pretty easy to get working once you piece together the information from several blogs, forums, and man pages. If you also live in Kenya, use Linux, and have one of these modems, keep reading.
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