Absolute linear time moment right now. It's almost September, and my birthday is in September, which means I'm almost In My 20s™, and none of that is fucking with me at all.
I drove some places today. I went downtown to attend some small event, but I was the only person who showed. Then I went to the mall to eat at the New York Fries there (Their "Bacon Double Cheese Poutine" doesn't even have gravy! Outrageous! Still good tho), then I went to go buy some bus tickets. I can drive now, but sometimes other people in the house need the car.
Each stop required that I navigate a parking lot, plus an extra bonus one to turn around in because I fucked up and exited one of them at a spot where I could only turn right, but needed to go left. For those keeping score at home, that's four total parking lots in one day. I also slipped and fell in some mud in one of them. Based on today's experiences, I can only conclude that parking lots are evil. They are the worst places to navigate both on foot and in a car. The more I use this thing, the more I feel like I shouldn't have to. At least the fries were good.
Still figuring out the whole "gender" business. No major progress on that front as yet.
Been thinking about home server stuff a lot. I kind of want to try to convert my laptop into some kind of fucked up chimera of a storage server. Disable the chassis intrusion detector, mount the mainboard in a desktop/server case somehow, massively upgrade the storage, maybe try and source one of those sketchy NVMe to SATA HBAs. Obviously couldn't power the drives off the laptop though. Anyway, could be fun if I don't blow everything up in the process.
I think these posts might be getting a little too long.
I've been having fun with various networking nonsense of late. To start, I finally got that SearXNG instance up and running. The issue originally was that I tried to run it in a Docker container, but it was listening on the HTTP ports so I couldn't run my website at the same time. Then I tried installing it normally, but something broke and it didn't want to work. I guess the installation instructions got updated recently, because I followed the guide again and it worked this time. No more search engine privacy drama for me!
After that I decided I wanted to start self-hosting a Minecraft server I run, at the time hosted on a Shockbyte server I was renting. I had an old gaming laptop laying around collecting dust that was more than up to the task, the only problem was my home network. See, I live with my parents, and naturally they're in charge of the home network setup. I'm not convinced they'd be willing to let me mess around willy-nilly with the router settings. And even if I could, it's behind some weird mesh WiFi network with its OWN management interface I don't know the login to.
Luckily, there was a way I could circumvent all this mess entirely: WireGuard. If I could connect, say, an external VPS to my laptop with a VPN, I could forward Minecraft traffic to it without having to care in the slightest about my home network! So naturally I didn't hesitate to install WireGuard and look up a guide on how to configure it. It was easier than I expected, funny enough. The main problem I ran into was that WireGuard is configured (sanely) by default to close the connection if the client doesn't send any packets for a bit, so I had to dig around in the config files to fix that if I wanted it accessible from the internet.
It worked great! As a bonus, my laptop is still accessible via LAN, so I can now connect to the Minecraft server directly from across my desk for ping times in the same order of magnitude as my monitors. With all this stuff running on my VPS now, I needed to upgrade from the $5 base plan. Fortunately, I now had a freshly-made-redundant Minecraft server rental I could cancel to free up the necessary funds.
Finally, I've installed Termux on my phone. I can now SSH into my computer to save Youtube videos with yt-dlp from anywhere in the house! I was worryingly enthused about that when I got it set up. I think I have problems.
I've had my driver's license for a few days now. I've even driven a couple of places... independently! It's proving to be significantly less terrifying than I was expecting, they said, jinxing themself.
Yeah, about that bit at the end there. The short version is, I'm no longer certain of my gender. You'd know this already if you've been poking around my site of late; I've taken quite a while to actually properly write about it. I guess I just felt weird about making it "official" by discussing it, so to speak. Anyway, I've started using he/they as opposed to the default he/him in spaces where I feel comfortable doing so, like here. Just to try it out. Seeing how I like it. Gathering data, et cetera. We'll see how it works out. Gender is hard.
Oh, and the car's fine, by the way. We think there was a broken seal somewhere in the power steeing system. The repair was expensive.
It's been an exciting 24 hours. I'm actually just about over this cold, it seems, for one. Also, I took my driver's exam today! I passed with 60 out of a possible 75 demerit points. Not phenomenal, but good enough! I am now officially a licensed driver! I smelled steering fluid during the parking section of the test though, so we took the family car I took it in to a mechanic immediately after. Fun stuff. In nicer news, we celebrated with ice cream cake afterwards!
I also set up a fediverse instance on my server today. Since quitting twitter, I've been sorely missing a place to post my banger tweets. My account is @email@example.com if you're interested. I went with Pleroma because I'd heard Mastodon might be too heavy for my weak little VPS. I'm glad I did, because even Pleroma is seemingly the most resource-hungry thing on my server thus far. It uses almost as much RAM as everything else (read: my website and an XMPP server I don't use because I can't make file sharing work) put together.
The thing was surprisingly easy to set up. This coming from someone who unironically calls Minecraft redstone stuff "simple", but still. I followed this guide and the process was shockingly smooth and painless, relatively speaking. Not like the time I tried to run a SearX instance. That sucked.
I've just about gotten over this cold. I've had nothing but a mild cough and runny nose for days now.
I took my last of several driving lessons today. I've got the exam to get my license scheduled in a few days and by the looks of it, there's a non-zero chance I'll pass! Very excited to be able to run errands for my parents.
Small update to say I've tested negative for covid! What a goddamn relief. At the risk of tempting fate, I seem to be getting better, too. Had to cancel an event I was going to today because I'm sick, though.
Also, according to the weather forecast, temperatures are supposed to be, like, sane for at least the next week! Hell yeah!
In an entry from 11 days ago I said I felt like it was supposed to still be June. It has since been at least a month. Somehow, it's also only been like a day since I updated this thing. Also somehow, it definitely shouldn't be August yet.
I'm diseased! Can't say whether it's the same thing everyone else had a couple entries back. Still just really hoping it isn't covid. It's been pretty mild so far, fortunately (knock on wood 🤜🪵).
I've also moved domains. It's isopod.cool now! The old link still works, though. My website is linked in a few places now and I didn't want to break anything. That's another major reason I had to leave Neocities. I could point two domains to my Neocities site, but only one of them would have been able to have SSL, and that is simply not acceptable.
My parents replaced the modem in the house today. The one we had was apparently really old and grandfathered in from our previous internet plan, and it turns out it was bottlenecking the bandwith to the entire house by something like TENFOLD. We went from 30Mb down to 300. This means we've been getting 10% of our (their) money's worth on broadband for YEARS. I am both upset and excited about this development.
My parents have also convinced me to watch The Office with them. We're three episodes in and I've had enough second-hand embarrassment for a whole month.
I haven't gotten sick yet, so that's good.
I've been trying to distance myself from larger social medias lately. I pretty much went cold turkey on Twitter a while back, and I've been cutting down on the time I spend on Tumblr recently as well. I may write a blog post about this soon. I also joined a small forum recently. So far it's much more pleasant than any social media I've used. On the off-chance you found my site from there, hi!
I've decided to learn Rust. It's certainly different. Still don't know how to declare a string.
Today I remembered this old XFCE theming website I used to frequent (and even contribute to!) back when I was very young and running Linux on a Chromebook. I went there and it's since been brutally KILLED and replaced with a Pling site... What has this world come to... R.I.P. xfce-look.org.
Everybody in my house but me seems to be sick with... something. Here's hoping it's not another round of covid. My mom is confident that it isn't, but I'm not so sure. 3 vaccines weren't enough to stop it the first time and apparently it can seriously damage your immune system - If I get it again, it'll probably be even worse.
In other news, I got lunch from my favourite sandwich joint today. Wore a mask, of course. We should never have stopped wearing those. Anyway, the sandwich was good. I got my usual order: ham + turkey + salami with smoked cheddar cheese and mayo + mustard and cucumbers on a kaiser bun (they've been out of my preferred dutch crunch bread for like the past few months). Of everything in my city, that place will be the thing I miss the most when we move by a good long way.
It feels like it shouldn't be this late in the month. Isn't it supposed to still be June?
Anyway, I'm just about done a song I've been working on! Love it when that happens. I should do that more often. I've got some fun ideas for the music video I wanna make for it, too.
Making the page I mentioned in the previous entry is taking longer than anticipated. I've been really tired recently for some reason. Part of me is blaming it on the heat, but it's possible that the complete degradation of my sleep schedule of late could be playing a part. Y'know, being unemployed and all.
I had a dream last night where I got a really good deal on a used graphics card. I don't know what that says about me.
I hate summer. It's too hot. It's been in the high 20's to low 30's Celsius almost every day for the past few weeks and I'm sick of it!!! I'm Canadian, I wasn't built for this!! One benefit, though, is the vastly increased volume of cool bugs.
I'm working on a page for my website about software I use. Well, really I've been scrolling Tumblr with the blank HTML document open on the other monitor. But you get the picture.
My home internet connection has been on the fritz today. I've been using my phone's mobile hotspot to connect to the internet on my computer. I chewed through something like a fifth of my monthly data cap doing that.
Had a bit of a scare this morning when I went to turn on my computer and the POST kept failing at the graphics card I overpaid for in March. Fortunately I re-seated it and everything was fine. In other news, today I learned that one of Ryzen's many idiosyncracies is that it will turbo super hard under almost any load at all if it thinks it can get away with it, so my CPU temps can skyrocket like fifteen degrees from as little as saving this document in VSCode.
Instead of writing a new blog post, I have added an HTML Journal to my site. This will be a place for posts that are too short to warrant a blog post, but too long to be a status. For example:
I installed some RGB strips in my computer recently! Well, one RGB strip. I bought two, but they were both a meter long and I seem to have underestimated just how long that is. When I built the computer, I figured I didn't need RGB, so I went out of my way a little to avoid it and then I realized that the glass panel on my case was tinted so I couldn't even see in. Hence the RGB strip, because I didn't want to spend money replacing perfectly good parts with ones that light up. I've got the strip crammed in a gap next to the wall of the case where it's blocked from direct view so that it just illuminates the inside and doesn't shine in my face. Here's a picture:
It's not exactly radiant compared to some other peoples' setups, but I like it. It's subtler.
Cool, right? I've retrofitted the blog post list to be compliant with HTML Journal's fresh new sister spec, HTML Blog, as well, mainly for the automatic feed generation it offers.