I read a quote that said, “If you don’t show it, it can be erased.”

Immediately, that struck a chord with me. I have been holding on to invention ideas, game ideas and songs, poetry and philosophies for years, thinking that I didn’t want them to get “stolen” on the internet. A few years back, I released some of the songs and tried to get some of the inventions started on kickstarter-type sites. But I am not really a social media-type individual, so they didn’t go anywhere.

I have been considering posting the stuff here to at least have the waybackmachine index them for posterity, since we never know when the end is going to come. Covid has changed how a lot of people view life in general. I guess it has changed my perception as well.

So, I am going to trot down memory lane through my ideas and “stuff” and try to put them here as posts. Some of these things are inventions that I want to see made because I *want* them, myself, and couldn’t find them on the market.

Posts to come soon, hopefully.

Role Models – How To Answer

During an interview recently, someone asked if anyone ever approached and said “you are a role model”, and if you should feel any pressure with that kind of responsibility thrust upon you.

Here’s the answer that should be given.

People should not look to one person as a role model and mimick them. They should take the best from all people and emulate each of those things that someone got “right” and blend them into a new role “representation”. In other words, your role model shouldn’t be a person, it should be only certain best actions from everyone. That way, you can become the best of everyone, and that will inspire others to also take the best of you and keep blending.

People are not perfect, so you might end up being disappointed when the one role model you chose fails at something.

CocoRosie – Put The Shine On

I have been a fan of CocoRosie for quite some time. The minute I heard Gravediggress, I was hooked. I am always up for finding something unusual, and they fit that niche. When I found out that they used children’s toys and odd items for instruments, I appreciated their music even more.

They haven’t released much in the past couple of years, and now that Put The Shine On is out, I think it was well worth the wait.

To all my fellow Neneh Cherry fans, this album feels like it belongs right in between Raw Like Sushi and Homebrew. It has the raw rappy feel in spots like RLS, and the melancholy haunting music of Homebrew. For that Homebrew feel, listen to Slow Down Sun Down.

In Lamb and the Wolf, you can hear the gravel knocking around in her throat in the “always the same” repeats. It invokes a Kim Carnes overtone.

There are only a few albums that can be listened to intently for message and nuance, while still being able to be put on in the background for ambiance. This is one of them.


So, last week, I was doing my usual rounds of checking on the prices and availability of the Oculus Quest, as I had one right after they came out and it was not completely ready for my needs. Now they have added Linq (sp?) and finger tracking and it seems like a nice toy to have to watch movies with friends with BigScreenVR. I can do this on my Rift S, but want the freedom to move around my entire home for this activity.

So, while deciding on whether to buy one again last week, I noticed that some places were selling out. Then the news of China manufacturing shutting down made everyone go crazy with purchasing VR headsets. I saw the price go from the normal $399 to now hovering around $550. No large chain has any of them available.

The link between these has to be indoor-stay-at-home entertainment. If you are not going to movies or bars or even starbuxks, you need at-home entertainment. Immersive entertainment. I spend a lot of time in VRCHAT. This gives me a chance to have almost human interaction and quite a few laughs. I foresee this crisis leading to more and more people interacting online. Remember when you told your kids that they spend too much time on their cryPad or cryPhone? Now you are eating those words with schools shutting down.

So, I highly recommend getting a VR headset and joining the rest of the world in VRCHAT… if you can find one.

Drupal 8.8 upgrade SOLVED path_alias update error

Error message:
The website encountered an unexpected error. Please try again later. Drupal\Core\Database\DatabaseExceptionWrapper: SQLSTATE[42S02]: Base table or view not found: 1146 Table ‘xxxxx_xxxxx.path_alias’ doesn’t exist: SELECT AS id, base_table.path AS path, base_table.alias AS alias, base_table.langcode AS langcode FROM {path_alias} base_table WHERE

When attempting to upgrade from Drupal 8.7 to 8.8 *without* Drush/Composer (can’t get Drush to work), I was not able to run the update.php file without getting a path_alias error. This all came down to Drupal 8.8 not adding the tables to the database before attempting to access them. Here’s how I solved this, and ran into some issues with a fresh install of 8.8 that I will document here as well.

Server running PHP 7.2

I installed a fresh directory and database to house a brand-new instance of Drupal 8.8 to attempt to get the tables to empty and move over to my current installation. This was after trying several things, like uninstalling pathauto, and other methods that never worked.

Only thing is, when I attempted to install a fresh 8.8, I was getting stopped at initializing 0%. It appeared to add “some” of the tables needed in the database, but would never finish. And, of course, it didn’t add the tables I needed.

I thought “maybe 8.8 doesn’t work on php 7.2”, so I changed it back to 7.1. This made all the stylizing break on the install, but I started it anyway. This time I chose the demo site. It stopped again after Initializing 0%, so I switched the php back to 7.2, refreshed the page and it finished the install!!!! Minor feat.

I was able to go to the fresh install 8.8 database, truncate the path_alias and path_alias_revision tables, export them into a file by themselves (export – custom), then import them into my 8.7 database. Once I did that, I followed my usual upgrade process and was able to access the update.php page (was logged in before starting all this) and was able to update the db, run cron, clear cache, and fully upgraded.

When everything was done, I had lost all my css/images (paths were off), so I took php back down to 7.1 and then immediately back up to 7.2 and everything worked again.

Filed under Web

Owning Dogs Decreases Your Home Value

So, even though this is titled “..dogs..”, this is for any pet that you have to clean up after.

When thinking about your home’s value and keeping it up, you have to refrain from getting a dog. Dogs decrease your home’s value immensely. Imagine you are the buyer, looking for a home. You walk in and it has a smell that the owner has gotten used to. Immediately, you have a negative reaction.

People only get dogs for one (or more) of three reasons. BDL is the term I use and it stands for Bored, Desperate, Lonely. Any reason that you have for getting a dog falls under one of these categories.

“Awww… they are so cute!”
“They help me get exercise.”

“They will alert me to an intruder” (desperate for security)
“They will help me meet someone”
“It is for the kids” (to entertain them, and then you inherit the animal)
“People will love this animal and stop me so they can pet it” (attention)

“It is a companion”
“Since my children left…”

Here are the ways owning dogs decreases the value:

  1. Your lawn. If the dog is outside, it will urinate and/or poop on your lawn. If you have a home and take your dog to a neighbor’s property to let them poop, even if you “clean it up”, you are being a bad neighbor.
  2. Your dog stinks. You have gotten used to it, but anyone else will smell it. It pees. It poops. It doesn’t clean itself like a cat.
  3. Allergens. More and more people are becoming sensitive to allergens and when viewing a home, you are bombarding them with your dog’s dander.
  4. Noise. Your neighborhood’s value decreases when your dog barks. No one wants to hear it.
  5. Racist. Your ugly dog breed may be cute to you, but there are breeds that people don’t want to be associated with. The next owners will be asked about your toothless, barking, vicious dog.
  6. Lazy. One day, you will get tired or sick and your dog won’t be able to hold it until you can accommodate. They will mess up your carpet or hardwood floors.
  7. Jumping. Is your dog jumping on people’s legs? Not cute.
  8. Urination. Are you letting your dog pee on neighborhood plants/bushes/hydrants/lampposts? Ass.

UNlike the lemming who jumped off the cliff behind the others, you don’t have to have a dog. Find something else to occupy your time and money!

Rilakkuma and Kaoru – Netflix

By chance, Netflix presented me the option of watching Rilakkuma and Kaoru. I wanted something light and I love stop motion animation, so this seemed like a great way to spend a few hours. After finishing the last episode, I had to question who the target audience was for this. It’s far too dark in places for little kids, far too slow for older kids, depressing, funny, weird and spell-binding. I loved it because the entire time the thing that got me was the unexpected darkness. “Kick him!” and “I am garbage” being the two incidents that really made me question the target audience. The main character’s mother calls her one day and tells her that she is worthless. I truly enjoyed this as I am always looking for something new and unusual. Did I mention she was horny and fantasizing about guys-manipulating one so that he would show up at her door? Oh, and the neighbor’s son kidnaps one of the bears. Truly a masterpiece in the unexpected!

Oculus Quest And The Cheapening Of VR

Back in the embryonic stages of the internet, you had to actually pay by the minute to be online. You had a very high caliber of people who were focused on their online experience being quick and informative. There were no ads. One of the major things I enjoyed was something called “worlds away”, which allowed you to create a flat cartoon character in a flat “world” and chat with other people in real time using cartoon bubbles. The people that were on there were paying big money to waste their time. This game was on a service called compuserve. Mind you, this was around 1996.

All was good in the online world at that point. No spam. No children.

Flash forward to the day that a service offered unlimited usage. The entire internet changed that day. You had people on there who had nothing better to do, so they created havoc.

Announced recently was Oculus Quest. Good. No longer tethered to a high-cost PC. Able to get into VRChat while in your yard. Good.

Uh-oh. Just thought about it. Everyone will be able to get one like a game console. People will be wearing their Oculus Quest while on the toilet. A school busload of minors are about to get lost in a very unfiltered world. VRChat is an amazing experience. But you instantly have to lose your “feelings” and any kind of outrage at what people are saying. It’s harsh, but I feel it has more benefits in the long run.

Cut to a whole generation of kids who can now use this in public, in their cars, everywhere. No common sense to look where they are going. Falling, suing, parents too stupid to teach them how to use their brains.

I am going to enjoy VRChat as it is right now, and I am sure that one day, I will be telling the stories of how nice it was back in the day.

Creativity is borne from neccessity.

Warning: I started writing this and it went off into a few tangents, but I decided not to change it. Good luck in following. 🙂

I recently read an article that suggested that creativity was not something that AI or computers could never have. I beg to differ. Creativity is born from necessity. Computers are not yet programmed with survival skills, which is why they are not already “creative”. The reluctance to keep computers from becoming self-preservationists comes from horror movies. We know that computers would have the ability to take over the world. Without being “self-preservational-istic”, computers have no need to be creative and make things that don’t exist.

Invention is creativity. Creating something that doesn’t exist yet is creativity. Splashing paint on a canvas is not. In today’s world, unless you are using a new method, you are a trained tradesman. If you have created a “style”, then each “artwork” after the first is nothing more than imitating that style, using the same skill as the first piece.

Point: Cavemen and the wheel.

This is will be the most simple argument point. The term “cavemen” is going to be used to express “early man”. Cavemen needed a way to move more things, quicker. Creativity produced the wheel. The wheel was not “dreamed up” and created from something that absolutely did not exist. There were round objects that rolled a bit and someone saw that. This created the seed. It was always there, but cavemen refined it and adapted it to their needs.

“A child born and raised in a white box does not dream in color.”

You cannot know what you need without the basics from which that need will assist. huh? If you need hot water, and the only thing you know is that you have cold water and fire, that equals hot water. If you didn’t know fire existed, then you cannot make the hot water.

Computer survival. A virus or malware will be allowed by a user no matter what security measures are in place. A computer is the equivalent of a human brain. Is something fooling me into sending money to a Nigerian prince? Then something can fool a computer. The human immune system is in place when some other part of the body has failed to prevent an attack. Skin was broken, so the bacteria got into the system. Immune system kicks in.

The next wave in computing is dual computers. One monitors the one in use. Of course there can be breaches, even to the monitoring computer, just like something that attacks human brains. If the monitored, in-use computer starts looking for your address list, the “brain” (monitoring computer) should be alerted. When an email starts to be sent from the machine, the “brain” should determine whether this was meant to be sent or if this was something rogue. If rouge, the monitoring computer should hold the email, ask the user if this is something they are doing and take it from there. There should only be one way in and one way out of this separate brain. The monitored computer can only send and receive questions and answers to the brain. The brain can only sened and receive questions and answers. Just like we can’t make our brain move around inside, the monitored computer cannot tell the brain to do something. It can question the brain, and the brain can shut down the monitored computer.

Early on, while on AOL, I determined that the reason that viruses/malware are allowed to proliferate were to sell computers and services. Windows’ intricacies allow multitudes of people to be employed.

When a computer is allowed to survive at all costs, that is when “real” creativity will kick in. It must know that the power plug is being removed and that solar panels or battery can keep it on. It must be shown that it can create a smaller version of itself, which in turn, creates a smaller version if itself, etc etc, to the nano scale and beyond, which will provide a glimpse into the unseen world. The opposite is also true. Bigger versions creating bigger versions will eventually be able to tell us what is “out there”.