The Mergy Notes

content + info + hacks + solutions

Latest Notes

Getting a Sugarized FBReader to Run on OLPC XO

OLPC XOs are interesting devices. There are some neat aspects to them but there are also some glaring issues. One issue we found in working with them and trying to make them useful for a trip to Senegal was the real lack of a good book reading application (‘Activity’ in OLPC-speak). After a lot of investigation and trial and error installs, I was able to get something working and...

BAWHUG Created For Bay Area Whipple Hill Users

We just created BAWHUG or Bay Area Whipple Hill Users Group to better organize the San Francisco Bay Area independent schools who are using the Whipple Hill Podium technology for their daily school functions. The initial idea with Ed Chen from Bay School and I relates to try and get some more communication between the various schools at the faculty-level so we can better help each other take...

Reasonably Priced Wireless Speaker System

In looking at replacement for fully-wired speakers in classrooms, I ws finally able to find some speakers that are under $200, wireless and have good sound quality. These speakers are from Cables Unlimited / Audio Unlimited and seem to be a great little solution. The speakers can use batteries or be plugged-in and wall-mounting is simple (no extra brackets, etc.). There are screw holes on the...

New Life for Linksys WRT300N with DD-WRT

My Linksys WRT300N has been a good router for home but now that I needed a some more routing options, I really needed to decide what to do. I don’t need a full-blown router since I am not dishing a routable class C or anything, just a couple of IPs to for servers. I have known about dd-wrt and openwrt for quite a while, but thought those only supported the ubiquitus Linksys WRT54G models...

Zabbix 1.6.1 on Ubuntu Hardy Heron 8.04

After working with other Open Source monitoring systems over the years, I decided to give Zabbix a try. Net-Saint then Nagios was always good, but getting it going initially and then adding the trending graphing was always a pain. Big Brother was another good one, but now that Quest Software owns it, the BTF version gets less and less appealing. Zenoss is another that I have used recently, but...

Seagate Momentus ST96812AS = Nightmare

bunch of dead Seagate Momentus ST96812AS

Wow – these drives are frying themselves at my work like crazy. The Seagate Momentus 60gb ST96812AS are a complete disaster. We have lost 8 in the last 3 months not to mention the ones that were lost prior to my arrival. These drives were installed on the first generation MacBooks and when they crash, they crash hard.
Stay away from these drives.

California Academy Of Sciences Pictures

This is a wonderful place and highly recommended. It is very much work the trip. The way they did the environments is really amazing. We got to attend at night and were very impressed. Here are a few pictures.