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Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Sexy Review

[From Marie Jo]
Christmas present opening day is coming, so here are some store/product reviews on some potential gift ideas. Mouse over the links in the nav list below for descriptions of each topic. Jump to a topic by clicking the link or continue reading.
Local Lingerie Stores

Bust through those bad bra experiences that can be a drag to get uplifted to the new you! Several new lingerie stores have been popping up in downtown St. John's Newfoundland. I decided to try out Le Boudoir Lingerie, Bra Fittiing Boutique & More because when I popped my head into The Booby Trap, it looked like my grandmothers closet sprinkled with white and beige. I also cannot find their website? However, I did find their horror that is the quadraboob video entertaining. I've heard good things about comfort, so I'll probably go back. Most of these boutiques have Facebook pages I suggest you visit if you have any questions. Le Boudoir got back to me rather promptly. If you're looking for costumes, I suggest you check out the Halloween Warehouse that opens seasonally on Kenmount Road.

Lingerie Links
Before I talk about my experience I'd like to point out my other "sexy" experiences so you have something to compare, and I can get a rant out.

Local Sex (Store) Experience

I used to frequented these. Some staff from specific stores immediately pounce on you and try to convince you that you look good in everything awful, passing you things you do not want to buy in the wrong uncomfortable sizes and go sly-eyed if I don't. They've told me I cannot return things (for sanitary reasons, this was relieving at the time) and sold me something that was falling apart, that had missing/broken parts and obviously returned (not so fine, since they wouldn't let me return it).

[Shunga's "Oriental Crystals" Scented Dead Sea Salt]
Shunga VS Karma Sutra

I've went in search of Shunga's "Oriental Crystals" Scented Dead Sea Salt that me, and other friends/family absolutely love. It has people who weren't fans of bath salts (like myself) loving it. It really does make the water feel like velvet and feels amazing on your skin. Rub the water between your fingers if you ever get to a sample of this stuff, picture your whole body in it and you will be sold. I was a teenager when I started using it and I really do believe it cleared up my skin. It smells very clean and they claim it's good for people who have eczemaI could stay in the water until I shrivel into a prune if this Shunga stuff is in it.

[Karma Sutra's Treasures of the Sea]
There is another product NOT to be confused with Shunga's called Karma Sutra's Treasures of the Sea which is a bath salt. Turns out me and a few others tried it due to lying employees which I'll explain in a moment. You need to use a lot of this product to get any affect and it does not turn the water as blue, does not react the same to water and has large white granular bits that take long to dissolve compared to Shunga's fine crystals. Some of Karma Sutra's products are comparable, but this is not. If you use regular bath salts, this may be fine, but those I know have tried it because they were expecting something else. I asked a girl in the local sex shop if she had the Shunga Crystals and was told that Karma Sutra was the identical product. I've been told this incorrect info repeatedly by different store clerks, leading me along with some family and friends to be unhappily stuck with this product. So, this time I pointed out they were not the same, thinking maybe the store clerk just didn't know. I was surprised when her voice turned snappy and argued with me. There was another customer in the store and the clerk decided to pretend being an expert with no answers when she was questioned about what she was saying. What bothered me most was when she said she knew for a fact they were identical but were just put in different bottles. The other customer sparked interest since I went in saying how great the Shunga Crystals were. Since I knew she was blatantly lying to us, I got her to loop into a circle of her own lies. I asked her why she was lying and she just looked at us in shock. The customer thanked me for pointing out the differences.

Local Traveling Sex (Parties) Experience

Though most of these companies do not like to be referred to as sex anythings, there are enough people calling it that for some consultants to start off their parties by stating don't call them that. But alas, I'm not overly sensitive to which words are currently, temporarily socially acceptable/politically correct so that's what I call them. There is to much of this overly sensitive we-need-to-change-all-the-words-every-few-years-to-keep-the-easily-offended-confused business on the go. "Get the Custodial Artist to take this bag of waste to the Sanitation Engineer so they can take it to the waste management collection over at the sanitary division" my ass. I'm getting winded. It's all a bunch of garbage, literally, that's what I call it, it's quicker.

[LipSlick]
I've enjoyed Sensuality Parties and my favorite product is their LipSlick Cinnamon Oral Arousal Gel. I use it as a wonderful thing called "lip-gloss" (seriously, cinnamon is a plumper and the stuff makes your lips feel great). Check out Sensuality Parties on Facebook if you are interested in buying or selling their products. I knew a consultant and found her to be very well rounded, knowledgeable, and open minded. She tried a lot of their products and knew others who have also. She was honest with everything. There are also Passion Parties available but I've had no experience with them. Check out Passion Parties on Facebook.

Another party around town that I was warned to stay away from due to their employees, but unfortunately I did not. I have several reptiles and have bought several Hot Heart Massagers similar to the one seen in this video for my snake and lizard. Bending the metal disk inside the heart makes the liquid inside (probably a saturated sodium acetate solution) react. The liquid starts to solidify and you slowly go from a colder liquid heart to a lighter colored squishy hot heart which eventually becomes hard (if you try to bend it it kinda sounds like ice breaking). You can liquify them again by boiling the hearts in water. My mom liked them so I went to buy her one. The "lady" actually insulted me and a few other people several times in front of different groups (who were not impressed, several stating they'd never buy from her again) but I still wanted the gift for my mom. It felt hard (the heart...it's suppose to be soft initially). I consulted the girl selling me the product because I wasn't about to open it and consequently give mom an opened gift from a sex shop. I was buying hundreds of dollars worth of stuff and the girl selling it to me said the heart was fine, it was just cracked already. I told her I was unsure about that and she said if there were any problems she'd give me a refund, even though they're not suppose to. Well, I finally gave mom the heart and it was indeed broken and falling apart. I went to the "lady" multiple times and she refused to give me a refund even though we've talked about it, she told me she previously would, she sold me a faulty product, I bought allot of products, and she insulted me in front of groups after giving her selling opportunities. For God sakes do not buy from Fantasia until their staff smartens up. I tried contacting someone else within the company and they told me it didn't matter because they have a no return policy. I still have the broken thing sitting in my house.

Local Boob Experience

[Le Boudoir, Bra Fitting Boutique & More]
First off I'd like to say a couple good words about the staff at Le Boudoir. As soon as we walked in we were welcomed, and not pounced-on-because-of-commission welcomed, but genuinely helpful-people-greeting-you welcomed. It was a breath of fresh air when I was expecting the type of experience I've had in other places that sell lingerie. Every time I've walked into their store up till this point I've witnessed a life altering bra story and someone walking away uplifted (in several ways). They have many sizes, and also describe to you how to properly put on a bra which sounds silly but every time I've went there, there has been someone who didn't know (you'd be surprised what you do not know). While you may not be the extreme case, people have walked out of this store crying because they were so happy with what they discovered. You would not believe how a bra can change someones attitude. It sounds funny but you'd be surprised. It's dramatic how different I've felt since I've switched to these bras. I saw a friend's face light up after recommending her visit the store. We came out saying what a wonderful group of people work there and it would be a great place to be if you enjoy helping people because of all the lives it brightens. That's right, we want a boob job. I encourage everyone out there to get sized by a professional.

Wish List

[Gift Card]
Just so all the girls and boys out there know, Le Boudoir have wish lists available so go in and ask if your friends are on file or create some records for yourself. If not gift cards are a good reason to make her walk into the store if you want to make sure (and believe me you do) she's wearing the correct bra size. This can contribute to a various number of health problems, some of which I have. Of course, like the majority of women, I was wearing the wrong bra size (3 cup sizes to small...embarrassing). In my defense, I've had a La Senza staff member suggest I shop at La Senza Girl after being told nothing there would fit me. And it's not like I've been reading up on my grow-a-monster-set-of-boobs spam. Maybe I should have a bra-burning-bonfire in memory of uncomfortable me. Let me know if you're interested in joining. You can read more about this global bra problem here: [1][2][3] and all over the internet. I've never been so comfortable since I was sized. I only wear Le Boudoir bras now. The first time I went into Le Boudoir they created a profile of me on their system, which I forgot about. I mentioned a bra I liked when I was there but did not purchase it. An extended period of time later I was there again and mentioned to a friend there was a bra I liked but I couldn't remember which it was. The girl walked over to the system and said the exact style color and size I wanted. How convenient is it that there are a bunch of people willing to help you, and not sell you thing you do not want? I also found bras I liked to be told they did not fit me right. They were actually honest. I've been served by 3 different girls and found them to be very professional and helpful.

Bra Suds

Something few people use but I thought I'd point out that they have several suds I recommend you check out (which I wouldn't normally). They suggested it to me but I thought to myself I'll just wash them with my own stuff but they gave me free samples and I gotta say the stuff is very pleasant smelling and now I want some. It comes in eucalyptusgrapefruitlavender or natural/unscented. According to the Eucalan website (which has lots of information about their product) it's a non toxic biodegradable phosphate free natural lanolin enriched formula that has a recyclable hdpe plastic bottle. They also have a video about it.

The samples read:

Eucalan
for all fine washables
no rinse delicate wash
grapefruit/eucalyptus/lavender
5ml | .17 fl. oz.

Collection
The staff in the store state that when someone comes into their store they usually become loyal to one brand. In my case without me knowing, everything I selected was Marie Jo (someone else picked out a Simone Perele piece I did like). I haven't found anything that fit like them in other stores. If anyone ends up being a Marie Jo fan, I recommend the following:

[1. Marie Jo Avero Style 0100-0416
Recommended in black]
[2. Marie Jo L'aventure Flavio Contour Plunge
Bra and Panty Set Style 012-1106

Recommended in red-pepper
(red/pink/grey/white pattern with solid red)]
[3. Marie Jo Lara...*something* Style 010-1456
Recommended in red]
[4. Marie Jo Camille Push-Up Style 010-1427
Recommended in orient blue]
    [5. Simon Perele Andora Style 131343
    Recommended in Cafe "So French"
    (It's brown with pink embroidery)]
    1. I put the white version up above so you can see the pattern better. I'm not a fan of the checkers but I especially like the straps with the 2 extra flowers that dangle past the straps which you can't really tell from the pictures. These flowers come out over some of my clothes making it look like the bra is part of the shirt. Unknowingly trick people into thinking you have fancy-strapped clothing with this bra. I also find it very comfortable (in the right size). Nothing digs into the wrong places. Of course, the straps are triangularly shaped so I can't wear it with anything exceptionally low.
      • From the website - Lightly padded cups that help conceal nipples, adjustable shoulder straps that convert into multiple silhouettes, panels push up, center & shape, underwire provides support and lift. The Avero Mulitpositional T-shirt Bra delivers a smooth, seamless fit with flair. The signature Avero embroidered daisy bra straps convert into a variety of styles including halter, racer back or one shoulder, making this a very versatile choice. The Avero Multi-Positional Bra is lightly lined to conceal the nipple without increasing the bust size. The Avero Multipositional T-Shirt Bra has a subtle check pattern that beautifully accents the curves for an experience of beauty and functionality.
      • Contour bras are constructed of a thicker fabric, which conceals the nipple and shapes the breast.
    2. So far image #2 above is my favorite looking set on me. It feels sharp, funky, with a bit of classy. I love the double straps with the brass buckles (see the buckle on the underwear?) and the switches from pattern to solid (the back of the bra has a similar style to the side of the underwear with the solid red stripe).
      • From the website - Smooth contour cups, Angled cups and small center bridge to enhance cleavage, Dual thin shoulder straps, geometric plaid design. The Flavio Plunge Bra is a fun twist on a classic style. Small geometric squares create an appearance of plaid across the cups and side panels. The cups are smooth and contoured with a light lining to conceal the nipple and provide a smooth, rounded silhouette. Attached to the cups are two thin spaghetti straps, one an extension of plaid, the other a contrasting color with a tiny brass buckle.
    3. Unfortunately I couldn't find this guy on the Marie Jo website, so I'm not sure if this item is still available. However I'm listing it here because the fit of the bra seen in image #3 above is very flattering.  There's also a version of this that fits the same in the orient blue color (not image #5), but personally I'm trying to unsuccessfully switch my under-wardrobe to black and reds. The only thing that bothers me about this bra is my black clothes seem to like becoming woolies (or as a friend of mine calls them, "woolie boos") on the back near the clasp edges. There's a similar style here called the Deauville Contour Spacer Bra by Prima Donna.
    4. There's a lot of detail on the straps of the bra in image #4 above. I didn't get to try this one but my friend did and she was surprised to see the supermodel in the mirror, she looked fantastic and it made her day.
      • From the website - deep plunge neckline embroidered tulle, lower cup contouring panels w/embroidered tulle, removable push up pads for cup Size A, B, C, underwire designed for support and lift, embroidery with diagonal seam on the cups. The Camille Push up bra has deep plunge presentation. The delicate embroidery designed with an oriental flair is sexy selection in the Camille collection. The cup has removable pads if the women want a little less cleavage. The diagonal seam and the underwire give you lift and support. The sensual push up bra is everything you want and more.
      • Plunge bras create a deep "V" presentation and lots of cleavage. These bras are super sexy construction and run on the motto "the less cup the better."
    5. The bra in image #5 above is the only one I bought that was not part of the Marie Jo collection. It's Simon Perele. I like the material in it (none of my clothes stick to it) and the detailing in the straps and under the busts. The cup is very soft and molds back very easily to it's original position (almost like a thin neoprene.
      • From the website - Created with moulded knit and embroidery, Andora assures excellent comfort and a form-fitting style that highlights a woman’s natural curves. Products available : Strapless, Tee shirt bra, Moulded Padding, Rigid seamless, Shorty, Thong, Bikini brief, Deep brief, Body Control Padding.
    Local Boob (Trap) Experience

    Edit: I went to the Booby Trap after.  The staff was very friendly and helpful there as well.  They seemed to show off their ugliest bras on the rack but they have several cuties hidden behind.  Just ask for your size.  They fit me about the same (28DD vs 30D which is an appropriate sister size).  I was surprised by the fact they had several 28 bands (which is unheard of).  My only gripe is I showed how it was past the tensil strength and had 0 stretch left on the largest clasp option and she still insisted I was a 28 band.  There's not a lot of fat on my body, so that was essentially digging into my bones.  Tightly I measure 26 inches around my bra band.  I would figure I'd be at least a size 29 which rounds up to a 30 if you know how band sizing usually works.  I know a lot of people wear the wrong size...but I like things tight (love corsets), and while I could breath, the short while I was in those bras I had red stripes from them digging into my body.  Particularly under-wire painfully digging into my sternum.  If you ever have this problem it is usually resolved by going up 1 band size and changing the cup size by 1.

    Sizing

    So many women do not get bra sizing, it's boggling, but somewhat understandable.  Some bras differ from manufacturer to manufacturer.  Sometimes a D is a D no matter what, and sometimes it changes depending on the band size.  In most cases, the cup size changes depending on the band.  For example, let's talk about my DD's.  28DD does not equal 36DD knockers.  That's the difference between me and my sister, and boy is there a difference (she stole all the boob genes when she was born).  This is how it normally works (this can change depending on the manufacturer or how 'perky' your girls are):

    Example:

    Measure fairly tightly around your bra band while exhaled: 26 inches

    Band size - if your first measurement is less then 36, add 4 to this number, otherwise add 5: 26+4 = 30 inches

    Add 1 if the previous number is odd: 30+0 = 30 inches

    Measure loosely around the largest part of your bust (preferably with non padded bra): 34

    Cup size - take the previous number minus your band size: 34-30=4

    Cup letter - from the previous number, count the alphabet to that letter.  1-2-3-4-5 is A-B-C-D-(DD or F): 4=D

    Tada despite their small size I get a 30D.

    Many stores will try to sell you your sister size instead of your true size.  They are similar, but there is a difference.  For example, 28DD is tight on me, 36A is loose.  Examples of sister sizes:

    28DD<=30D<=32C<=34B<=36A<=38AA

    If you find your true size does not fit, it's sometimes helpful to go up or down a sister size.

    If you you're not sure what your true size for a particular manufacture is, ask a professional.  I've found them fairly spot on and if they're off they're probably only off my a smidge/sister size.

    A Little Story

    I'll end off by saying I use to work in a lingerie department, and you'd be surprised what you get told/asked, how many strippers buy from the local box stores, how many guys ask the staff to try things on for them, and how much leopard print lingerie "Trixie" buys. I also had this guy continuously call me asking what size bra I wore and if I could slowly describe how I put it on. Some of the girls at the front desk would purposely forward the phone calls to me when I was in the electronics department because they thought I was the most entertaining about it. I once passed the phone to my boss who was passing by and said "It's for you" at which point the guy said the same thing to him as another person in the store passed us. So of course, my boss handed her the phone saying "It's for you" haha. Long story short, my old boss (male) knows how to put on a bra as described from staff at Le Boudoir better then the 2 girls that answered the phone.

    This is me, take it or leave it NL.

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    Reflex Game

    [Reflex Game  Parts]
    The Post: This is a post on how to make the thinger to the right (it's a little reflex game I made) with all kinds of neat tools.

    The Tools: If you're thnking about making something like this, you'll need the following:
    The Game: Each person puts their thumb on a button holder (cylinder thing in images) and pushes their red button when the LEDs reach the green light.  The lights in front flash red, then yellow, then green (as seen on board in first image).  Whoever hits the button after the light has turned green first, wins.  The game indicates who won by flashing an LED (above the colored LEDs) closest to the winners button.  If someone hits their button before the light is green, they loose.





    [Board]
    The Board: A soldering iron (or gun) is a great thing to have.  That way, you can steal other peoples breadboard chips and have fun with them!  A soldering iron is good enough for this game but guns get hotter and can be used for more applications.  This is what I did with the board:
    1. Find heat gun and black shrink
    2. Slide shrink down the wires around the button bottoms as pictured where the wire is exposed
    3. Heat shrink with heat gun until it does its thing (shrinks onto the wires).  Do not melt things
    4. Find a soldering iron (I prefer ones that glow orange from Canadian tire, it's a lot better/hotter then the wireless ones)
    5. Find Solder (I used lead-free)
    6. Find wet sponge (a real one like what comes with this, not one of those plastic ones that will melt and attach itself to your gun when it gets hot)
    7. Insert a wire, resisters, light, chip, or other parts onto the boards front at it's desired length (the LEDs have to pop through the metal case, so make sure they stick off the board evenly)
    8. Turn the board around and take a small amount of solider to attach the piece to the board
    9. Dab soldering gun off the sponge to keep it clean
    10. If there are long bits hanging off the back, cut them with a wire cutter
    11. Repeat starting at step 7 until all parts installed
    12. Tada, board!



    [Button Holder Top]
    The Button Holders: Lathes are pretty neat.  You can set up measurements so you do not need to leave any marks, and pretty much everything on a lathe can be made on a lathe.  You can make screws, rods, and all sorts of funny shapes with them.  It reminds me of metal pottery.  Except instead of Patrick Swayze guiding your hands through mud, you have the lathe, throwing metal spirals at you.  They are hot, stay away from them.  Also keep away from baggy clothes because like Patrick Swayze in a 90's girl dream, the lathe will rip them off.  The button holders were made with a metal lathe, which enabled very precise measurements (which is good, because you want it to fit snug).  The steps are below:

    [Button Holder Bottom]
    1. Find metal cylinder chunk that may or may not be kinda dirty/rusty looking
    2. Install metal chunk (which is going to be the button holder) in the lathe
    3. Perform a facing to the top (and bottom if you like) with the help of our cross-slide by shaving off the first few layers on the front and bottom of what I'm calling the chunk.  This makes the face clean and shinny
    4. Install the small drill bit on the taper that's the width of the push button
    5. Put a drop of oil on the tip of the drill bit every time you change it, as it gets hot
    6. Set up measurements for the middle of the cylinder
    7. Drilling hole through the center of the cylinder.  This is where the top hole comes from as seen in the first button holder pic
    8. Repeat drilling increasing the size of the drill bit each time until the hole is the desired circumference (the button should fit into it).  Instead of going directly through the chunk each time, only go up to the top, leaving half the width of the button top (so you can press the button when it's in the holder).  This can be seen in the second button holder pic (there's a smaller hole in a bigger hole).  As you can imagine, the last drill bit was quite large
    9. Set up the measurements for the outside thickness of the button holder
    10. You cannot remove cm at a time (unless you want to break something) so if the chunk is a lot thicker you have to shave off about a mm at a time
    11. Set the lathe up the same way you did a facing but this time slide the chunk back and forth via a handwheel on the carriage to shave off a small amount of metal around the entire surface.  Make sure the top of the buttons will fit next to each other once they are in their casing
    12. The last layer should take off a very small amount of metal, giving it a smooth appearance as seen on the images here
    13. We now have a shiny metal cylinder.  To make the edges less sharp shave off several layers off the edges to create a rounded edge
    14. Setup measurements for the hole slightly smaller (not even a mm) then the large holes in the sheet metal).
    15. Perform step 9-12 again but this time leave a portion of the top alone.  Perform this step until the button holder can sit in the hole in the case (known by the measurements mentioned in 14), it should not fall through it.
    16. Sweep up hundreds of metal spirals
    17. Tada, button holder!



    [Case]
    The Case: The sheet metal I had came with 2 pre-cut button holder holes and cut to the right shape.  Sheet metal shears can be used to cut the straight lines, while there are special heavy-duty circle cutters that are commercially available that attaches to a drill as a drill bit and can cut larger holes.  A sheet metal nibbler can make neater shapes.  These are the steps I made to create the reflex game:
    1. Spray paint a piece of sheet metal blue on one side
    2. Find something pointy
    3. Mark the measurements where the bends and holes for the LEDs should go with a sharp metal tool.  You can see the blue paint and the markings I've made in the pic.
    4. Find a drill with a bit slightly larger then a LED
    5. Drill holes as marked in step 3
    6. Bend the sheet with a press break, making sure to bend things in the right order or it will not fit together
    7. Fasten battery holder with rivets with the help of a rivet gun (what a handy little tool)




    The Finished Product:  For some reason, I don't have a picture of that.  But to finish, perform the following:
    1. Attach button holders into case
    2. Attach buttons into button holders
    3. Attached the board into the case, making sure the LEDs come out through the case.  You may need to use spacers to get the board in the case at the desired width away from the case
    4. Tada, Game!
    This is me, take it or leave it NL.

    Monday, November 7, 2011

    Jot Notes - Joining the Apache Kalumet Incubator

    [Karaf and Kalumet mix]
    Since Kalumet has just been accepted into the Apache Incubator, I get an inside view of a new project from the beginnings.  Winter is approaching, so I've done up a quasi-Christmas list of things to know when joining a new open source Apache project.  The list is still fairly limited as I was hoping to get something out of a planned programming session with a Karaf friend.  But turns out mixing Karaf with Kalumet (and apparently a bit of LMFAO according to the pic) can be a little dangerous (expecially if you are from certain countries as you'll find out if you read below).  There will probably be more in depth topics later.  If you're already confused, reading my previous post may clear that up.  If you intend to keep reading you should join in on the fun we had by listening to the YouTube video at the bottom of this post.
    • JIRA - Like many thousands of other software projects, Apache uses JIRA, a software tool for tracking issues and project management.  JIRA can connect bugs directly to subversion source code with native CVS (Concurrent Versions System) integration.  Find more about JIRA here (or Godzilla for short?)
    • Mailing Lists - This JIRA issue was made to manage the creation of the following mailing lists for Kalumet:
      • User - General questions about Kalumet usage, use cases, etc.  Where users may ask questions.
      • Dev - Discussion about Kalumet development. This mailing list is used by all Kalumet committers. It's where the discussions, proposal, road-map, and votes stand.
      • Private - For Kalumet's PMCs.
      • Commits - Notification for all Kalumet's SVN commits.
    • Incubator Repository - This is where the Incubator projects (like Kalumet) live.  The ASF uses SVN and GIT (GNU Integrated Tools) as their distributed revision control system.
    • Quarterly board report - An automated system emails board meeting dates/info to the development mailing list each month in advance, to allow for review time.  The report for Kalumet forms part of the Incubator PMC report.  This is because Kalumet is a podling (referring to the codebase and community while being 'incubated').  The reports are appended to the Incubator Wiki page each month.  Last month's quarterly board report is located under http://wiki.apache.org/incubator/October2011.  Mentors should review reports for their project(s) and sign off on them on the Incubator wiki page. Signing off on a report shows that Mentors are following the project.  Projects that are not signed may raise alarms for the Incubator PMC.
    • New Committer - Since I've been voted in, my name on the Apache committers index moved from "Unlisted CLA" to "SVN-Committer" with my username, full name, and project (Incubator).  Then the PMC Chair filled out a ASF new request forum (or any ASF member if the chair was unavailable) on my behalf.  Different types of elections are held on either the public mailing list or private mailing list.  Once my request was received, a community member with root access created my account, adding permissions like relevant source code modules (which enables me to commit).  Since this is volunteer work, this sometimes takes time.  After accounts are created, they are managed by the Apache infrastructure team.  root@apache then sent me an email with various information and mentions that the community mailing list among others are available if I am interested.
    • LDAP Managed Services - The root email mentioned above sends committers the location and login information of these services:
      • Shell (people.apache.org) - Committers can SSH to this location with their Apache username and password like this: ssh userName@people.apache.org 
      • SVN (svn.apache.org) - SVN stands for Subversion
      LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol) is represented through LDIF (LDAP Data Integerchange Format) files.  You can use LDIFDE (a command line tool) to import/export information in Active Directory.  Apache uses something called Apache Directory though I'm more familar with the ADAM (Active Directory Application Mode) which is now renamed AD LDS (Active Directory Lightweight Directory Services).  If you look under http://monitoring.apache.org/status, you'll see the below under LDAPS
      • cn=ldapmonitor,ou=users,ou=services,dc=apache,dc=org
      This would be written in the Schema (contained in a LDIF file) as a DN (distinguished name) which is a unique identifier for the directory.  DC stands for the domain component so basically you we split up the domain apache.org into two components (dc=apache, dc=org).  OU stands for the organizational unit, or user group.  As you can tell from the above DN, you can be part of more then one OU.  CN stands for the common name, which refers to the individual object which you can query, so in this case there is a ldapmonitor object whose attributes would be defined in the schema.  Active Directory has a directory like structure (who would have guessed?) so when looking in the AD LDS or ADAM for example, the ldapmonitor CN/object could be looked at like a folder and the attributes defined in the schema could be looked at like the files inside.
    • Email - Committers get a @apache.org email address.  According to the root email I received, mail servers are updated every hour which enables new members to receive emails from their Apache email address.  I cannot receive email directly from the server, at least one forwarding email address has to be set up.  This can be changed by logging into https://id.apache.org/details/userName.  Committers can link apache.org emails to their gmail account by following these steps.
    • Names - One thing I've noticed is a very small number of Apache members do not have real names attached to their profile. A PMC member informed me that in some countries it is illegal to partake in this type of activity so they leave their name out for privacy/legal purposes. As you would imagine, those people working in open source that are in hiding do not talk about it often online, but I've scowered the internet and posted a few related articles which I've linked below:
    • Kalumet is pretty DOAP (Description of a Project) - The DOAP file is a XML file containing a RDF Schema defining the project.

    This is me, take it or leave it NL.

    Friday, September 30, 2011

    "Open Source" to Drugs and Alcohol

    [Chief B-Day Bill and I before
    the tipi ceremonies]
    First the K's and C's...

    The Drug - Kalumet

    If you translate the words on the polish Wikipedia page, you will see that a kalumet is what many people refer to as a peace pipe.  The English page translates this word to calumet with a C.  Traditionally, smoking this ceremonial pipe sealed a covenant or treaty.  A common material for calumet pipe bowls is red pipestone (catlinite).  If you search the internet you may even find a pipe stem made by an Apache (Native American group).

    [Making Engineering version
    of "Rocket Fuel"]
    The Alcohol - Karaf

    If you translate the words on the dutch Wikipedia page, you will see that a karaf changes to the word Carafe with a C (and an e), which is a decorative bottle.  If you then hit the English link on the left hand side of the page the word changes to decanter, a container used for the decantation of liquid such as wine.  A decanter is used to keep the sediment from a liquid such as wine in the bottom of the the container instead of in your drink.  Unlike the "Rocket Fuel" container pictured to the left, there were many things floating in those drinks.  I'm not sure if there is any real distinction between a carafe and a decanter, but whenever I see something in Stokes labeled with either, they look the same to me.

    Before you start thinking I have an interesting life filled with Kalumet's and Karaf's, I'll tell you what this post is really about now.

    I signed up for Nabble and gave a PMC (Project Management Committee) from the ASF (Apache Software Foundation) my non-binding +1 vote for the acceptance of Kamulet to join the Apache Incubator.  And no, Apache isn't a native at this point, it consists of many open source projects like Kalumet, which is no longer a physical pipe...kept in a incubator?  Voting lead me to a senior architect of Talend and before I knew it, I was listed as a Initial Committer for the Apache Incubator project, Kalumet.  If this post is starting to sound Greek (Polish or Dutch) to you, see how the ASF works.  Shortly after I faxed along the ICLA (Individual Contributor License Agreement), my name showed up on the ASF Committers Index.  A day or so later Apache's secretary emailed me to let me know they acknowledged the receipt of my ICLA, which was filed in the ASF records.
    For those of you who have wondered what the beginning of an open source project looks like, these are some baby steps I've taken:
    • Installed a JDK (Standard Edition Java Development Kit) the SE (Standard Edition).  To read more on what a JDK is, see Wikipedia's JDK page.
    • Installed Maven - According to their site, "Apache Maven is a software project management and comprehension tool".  More information is listed on their what is Maven page.
    • Setup JAVA_HOME, MVN_HOME, and PATH environment variables.  For those of you who do not know, MVN stands for Maven.
    • Installed TortoiseSVN - A Windows Apache Subversion client that integrates itself into windows explorer and is used for source control.  You can "checkout" files in a project (such as an Apache project) into a windows folder using this tool.  In my case, the first project I checked out was Karaf, just to see what an Apache project would look like. According to Apache's site Karaf "is a small OSGi based runtime which provides a lightweight container onto which various components and applications can be deployed"
    • Installed Pidgeon - I was invited to join the Kalumet community channel (catchy).  So I installed this universal chat client that (more importantly) supports the IRC chat network.  It is located on a server called irc.codehaus.org on the #Kalumet channel.
    Other then that I am catching up on buzz words that are mentioned around this post like many of you are probably doing right now after reading this post.

    I'd like to thank a Karaf PMC member for bringing this opportunity to me :)



    [Waiting at MUN for the movie to
    start. Image by Jamie Goodyear]
    In other Geek news, if you haven't heard of PHD Comics (where PHD stands for Piled Higher and Deeper) I recommend you see the comics.  This month, MUN had a showing of The PHD Movie.  I enjoyed the fact that the characters actually looked like the drawn characters.  Read more about the movie experience from I Code by the Sea.  But for fans who missed it I'd like to add that you already saw the punch lines, as the movie was essentially the first part of the comics.  If you'd like your campus to show the movie,  find out how.

    This is me, take it or leave it NL.

    Monday, September 26, 2011

    The Extremez

    [Pocket with NL Extremez at the
    Clarenville Drag-way]
    Despite the title, I'm not going to rant about the NL Extremez motorcycle community, though I did have a great time racing them at the Clarenville Dragway and doing the Ride for Sight.  The first part of this post is more "car driven".  I apologize for the pun, it's late.  I was never a car fan until I realized how upset I was after someone modded my Lottus without letting me know...in Grand Turismo.  First thing's first, never mess with a girl's Lottus.

    Then this September I started noticing cars, race cars, lots of them.  Now, it could have been because all the Newfie race car drivers decided to go for a spin at the same time, or because of the fact it was during the 10th Newfoundland Targa (54 cars finished). For those of you who don't know about Targa Newfoundland according to their site, it is the first and only event of it's kind to be held in North America.  This September, a multimillion dollar, one of a kind, Ferrari Enzo, plunged into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Marystown, Newfoundland.  The owner (God love him) handled it quite well.  Read the CTV news article.

    [Ferrari Enzo crashes into the ocean]

    I was discussing this event to a owner of a Porche 911 and he started talking about his to-do list for his trip to Vegas.  In case you are one of the many people who suck at being a tourist like me, I want to let you in on several unique maybe-not-so-obvious experiences that you can have if you ever decide to travel to Vegas.  I'll also mention several local alternatives.

    [Racing an opponent at the
    Clarenville Dragway]
    #1. Locally, you can pull off a quarter mile on the Clarenville Drag-way, wait for Targa Newfoundland and chuck out a lot of dough, or pull some illegal stunts elsewhere.  So, why don't you race against your friends in a Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porche, Audi, or other fancy car of your choice on the Las Vegas Speedway with the Exotic Racing school.  Yes, you can do this.  Yes, you can go fast.  Watch the video below to see the track.

    [Flying in Australia]
    I'm a bit of a thrill seeker so I admit, I was a little envious, and he couldn't stop there.  He knew I flew 48 hours one Christmas morning to meet a girl my age from Australia whom I've never met in person before but use to MUD with a copious amount when I was 13.  He knew that new years day, my last day in Australia, she dropped me off in a field and said she'd be back later.  In the field was a shack.  I walked to the shack and people were inside prepping to drop me out of a airplane flying over 14,000 feet in the air.  This brings us to his second event.  He sent me an email with the subject line "it's not quite a skydive but it's the best I can do...".  Inside the email was a link to the video below.


    #2. Jump off the Stratosphere with SkyJump Las Vegas.  If you YouTube this, you will get many entertaining reactions of people taking their very first jump from the SkyJump's wrist camera which can be supplied during the event.  You can do this during the day or night.  For those who cannot make it to Vegas to zip through the sky, there are several local options.  Marble Zip Tours has eight zip lines and is located in (you guessed it) the Marble Mountain ski resort in Corner Brook.  Here is a blog of someone who has experienced it.  Marble Zip Tours also have ATV tours.  Zip the North Atlantic has seven zip lines (according to the government) and is located in Petty Harbour, 20 minutes from downtown St. John's.

    [SkyJump off the Stratosphere]


    So, go to Las Vegas next week.  Beat the bald Ferrari driver.  This is me, zip-lining to the races NL.

    Saturday, September 17, 2011

    My "Petcock"


    [My Ninja, "Pocket"]
    Computing has revolutionized the way motorcycles work for the better in many ways.  But it makes me cry a little inside to see the way it's impacting the old biker culture. Motorcycle manufactures are adding more and more electronics to inform users (GPS, onboard computers), improve safety (ABS, oxygen sensors, electronic ignition), and perform other tasks (12V sockets so you can charge your batteries). For example, according to Aprilia, it is standard for their naked bike (the “Shiver”) to come equipped with all these options.  I'd also like to point out that they have some great "naked" slogans which you can see if you click some of the reference links on this post.

    [Pocket and friends in rural NL]
    If you observe bikes parked in the Tim Horton's parking lot on a warm Thursday night (lot night) in Paradise Newfoundland, you'll notice the older the bike, the greater the chance it will have a carburetor. You can also come to the same conclusion by looking through years of bike specifications on manufacturers websites such as Kawasaki's, as you can watch many of the newer bike engines switch to fuel injected models (minus a few such as the Ninja 250R).

    [The petcock is connected
    to the gas tank!]
    Now let's look at Aprilia, one of the first bike manufacturers to introduce an innovative ride-by-wire throttle technology on a production bike (Motorcycle Consumer News). Similar in idea to the "Fly-by-wire" technology in a airplane, this fuel injector electronically controls the throttle valve aperture and is selectable by Aprilia's “Tri-Map”. Aprilia's Tri-Map has three modes which gives the user the ability to “detune” the engine by pushing the button on the right switch block (Motorino). This alters the throttle response and/or cuts the horsepower (Motorcycle Consumer News), enabling the rider to have the quick zippy response of a sport bike, a smoother touring approach for those longer rides, or a more cautious response for those riding in rainy weather. These three modes can be seen on the LCD display connected to the on-board computer which receives and processes information and is equipped with it's own memory for self-diagnostics. Just to add to the impressiveness, the screen also shows gear engaged, map selected, ambient temperature, trip time and a clock (Aprilia).

    [Emergency downtown St. John's
    Pocket fix with handy assistant]
    As technology advances, the old biker culture falls to the wayside. The days of a person tinkering with their mechanic skills in the garage and cleaning their "carbs" with their buddies are dwindling, as there are less parts to play with without paying a price. As of September 14th, 2011 typing "fix carburetor" into a search engine such as Google returns top results with keywords like “repair”. Doing the same for “fix fuel injector” returns top results with keywords like “Replacing”. Some argue that fuel injectors are better because they are more proficient and emission friendly (Motorino). But, after questioning a Professor of Computer Science who is currently a proud owner of a “Aprilia Shiver”, he admitted the inconveniences of not being able to fix parts of his bike due to the electronics. As the systems become more electronic, it gets beyond the scope of the average biker enthusiast, mechanic or even computer scientist to fix (even if it's computer related). Sadly this means the “fix it yourself” culture changes to “buy it yourself”. Every year I meet more and more people who consider themselves "motorcycle enthusiasts" who are afraid to "touch their parts".  When you see little ol' me arguing with a guy in the Cape Spear parking lot trying to convince him that changing oil isn't a scary thing, it's a sad day.  Especially when his response is, "it's to risky".  All the joy is gone.

    [Pocket on the highway to Clarenville
    Photo by Roger Price]
    What does fuel injection mean to me? There will be a day in the future where I won't be able to make double entendres about a "Petcock" vibrating between someones legs. I love my 2009 Ninja 250R. This is me, take it or leave it.
    

    Friday, September 16, 2011

    Hello (blogger) world!

    [Me]
    First off, I'd like to introduce this blog.  I've determined there is no singular topic I want to blog about consistently, so this will be a mishmash of experiences, events, and unrelated topics.

    Now to introduce myself.  I'm a Software Developer from Newfoundland.  Below is a little bit of information about my background so you'll know what to expect from this blog.  If you don't like a topic, read the next one!  There is quite the unrelated variety.
    • Fitness- I've been a dancer since 1991.  I've done jazz, modern, hip-hop, tap, ballet, and was in a performing group that did performances in town.  Since then I've also started doing pilates, yoga, hooping, and hiking.  I've been on a health kick/quest lately, so there will probably be some fitness topics at some point.
    • Music - I'm not exceptionally talented but I do have a variety of instruments that I play or own with the hopes to play.  Flute, piano, keyboard, organ, guitar, accordion, glockenspiels, and of course, the recorder to name a few.
    • Motorcycles - I am a proud owner of a 2009 Kawasaki Ninja 250R Special Edition Motorcycle.  Some people would say unusually proud.  Below is a cute little commercial of my favorite bike.
    • Pets - I've owned lizards, snakes, cats, hamsters, birds, newts, frogs and fish.  There has been a significant number of people who have contacted me stating that they knew I was a herpetologist (I'm not, nor do I claim to be) and have asked for my help.  I've also had to play vet a couple times due to the complete lack of vet's educated on certain exotic animals.
    • Gaming - I randomly visit people I use to MUD with when I was 13, some of them also randomly visit me.  This once lead me into a shack in the middle of a field in Australia.  In the shack was a parachute.  These days I avoid gaming because when I start I stop doing everything else.
    • Electrical and Computer Engineering - I'm a bit of a computer nerd.
    [Commercial of my favorite bike]

    This is me, take it or leave it.