Alfred + dc
I use Alfred 2 a lot on OS X in order to get things done. It doesn't completely change how
I use the operating system, but it comes close. However, one of my pet peeves about it has always
been that the built-in calculator is pretty terrible (even with the "advanced" equals-sign calculator).
I realized this morning that I could fix this, and, lo, the dc alfred workflow was born.
It just takes its input and runs it through the
dc command-line utility, giving you a fully-programmable
RPN calculator. It's not quite as great as PCalc, but it's just a …
Interesting SSL Issue
Shortly after I upgraded to OS X 10.9.2, I was connecting to battle.net, and I got an SSL error. At the time, I
didn't think anything of it (after all, sites have bad SSL certificates all the time). However, I noticed it again today when looking
at the page for Reaper of Souls, and decided to look into it again. When I did, I found something very unusual: my system
has a second copy of the DigiCert root CA certificate in the "login" keychain. For those of you who aren't familiar, OS X
uses a hierarchy of …
Pebble Steel First Impressions
I've had an article sitting in Draft status since June 2013 about the
Pebble smartwatch which I bought during their Kickstarter campaign. The article
essentially said that the Pebble has awesome features, but feels like a toy and scuffs
if you look at it askance. I was planning on going into detail about how apps
like httpebble and smartwatch+ feel immensely hackish.
Well, as of today, I'm confident reporting that Pebble has resolved all of these issues
with the Pebble Steel and Pebble OS 2.0.
I'm going to talk (briefly!) about both of these new releases. All of the …
A Rant on Redis
It's been a while since I posted, and I've been spending a lot of time fighting with Redis, one of the darling databases of the NoSQL era, at work, so I thought I'd grace y'all with a brief rant on Redis, what it's good at, what it's bad at, and so on.
What is Redis?
Redis is an open-source moderately-structured in-memory key-value store. This means that, unlike full relational databases, it doesn't have a fixed schema, and it can't perform server-side operations like joining and filtering data, and theoretically it's faster. Redis looks an awful lot like memcache, but …
GPG (2013 Update)
In light of all of the hullabaloo about PRISM and other spying
technology, I thought it'd be good to remind all of your dear readers
that we've had the technology to ensure private communications on the
Internet for 22 years in the form of Pretty Good Privacy (and
the much-more-commonly-used implementation, GnuPG). Ars Technica had
an okay article about e-mail encryption with PGP which I recommend
reading, although you should keep in mind that most security
professionals would consider infrastructural PKI like SSL and S/MIME to
be compromised by nation-state-level adversaries (and all associated
Anyhow, my GPG …
My Storage Problem
Storage is cheap, or so we're told. Amazon will sell me storage for
$0.055/GB/month in “the cloud”; 3.5" hard drives are hovering
around $0.06/GB. However, my laptop has a little 250GB SATA drive that
is (a) slow and (b) getting full. So I desire to replace it with a fast
little SSD. But that raises the question of what to do with my stuff.
I'm asking you, Internet. Details below the fold.