Geeky Paintball

Yes folks, I’ve known I’m not the only geek into paintball for a long time. But you know it’s reaching critical mass when “WIRED reviews Scenario Paintball”:http://www.wired.com/culture/lifestyle/magazine/15-06/ff_paint?currentPage=1

Remember, if you ever want to try, first ones free (well, kinda :-p)

1022 is back again

“House Resolution 1022”:http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h110-1022 Back with a vengeance.

Representative Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.) is out for blood as she has reintroduced the so call “Assault Weapons Ban”, which she says is “to reauthorize the assault weapons ban, and for other purposes.” So why do I care? Well most friends wouldn’t wonder that, but I thought I’d list a few things out.

First off, let’s see what an assault rifle is. “This Blogger”:http://www.bootsandsabers.com/index.php/weblog/permalink/the_new_assault_weapon_ban/ gives a nice little breakdown of the what the bill defines as an assault weapon. Basically, the main definitions include a lot of cosmetic details that people see in movies, and think must be important for a gun to be dangerous. Does the Rep introducing the bill even understand? “View this video to find out”:http://youtube.com/watch?v=D9wxzmBW2fs . That’s right, the lady admits she doesn’t even know what the barrel shroud is, and admits the bill isn’t the best.

As for pistol grips on a rifle, I get really upset. I enjoy having this style of grip, why? Because my normal trigger finger was shattered as a teenager, and I have less movement with it, so I fire with a different finger, and a standard rifle inhibits my ability to shoot. So should I make an argument that this bill is anti-disability? In a way it is, because part of the text of the law goes on to describe that merely the existence of a kit to modify a gun to have these features makes that gun banned. That’s right, if you own a Ruger 10/22 (one of the most popular rifles ever produced) you will never be able to sell it, because of the existence of barrel shrouds, folding stocks, foregrips, and because it has an *evil* detachable magazine.

Many people contest that this ban should be ok, because what person would want a gun like that? What use does it have? Actually, quite a bit. The law is so broad that it bans guns of every type. Even your most common Scout range .22, to the most popular hunting and competition target rifles are included. Every semi-automatic shotgun, most non revolver pistols.

This bill would ban:
* Every gun that was modified to comply with the Clinton ban
* Most of the most popular hunting rifle styles
* Guns with _”any characteristic that can function as a grip.”_ (lawyers will have fun with that)
* WWI and WWII era carbines, unless rendered inoperable
* Any gun the attorney general claims is not “Sporting” (yes, up to the current attorney general to decide, no elected oversight)

Any of these guns (the vast majority that exist) could cause a penalty of “at least 10 years” in jail, followed by fines, confiscation of property, etc. Just being charged for violation would cause all weapons to be confiscated, without return!
Please “read up on the law, and some resources about it here”:http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Assault_Weapons_Ban_and_Law_Enforcement_Protection_Act_of_2007, and follow up with your representative.

Why is it the people most champion civil rights seem to be the first to want to remove your ability to keep them?

Fedora And Perl

So I’m one of those folks that once upon a time, used RedHat based distro’s almost exclusively. Then I moved on to better things 🙂

But most of the companies I’ve been at have used RH systems, and as a Perl developer, it’s hindered me when trying to find the packages I want.

If you are using Fedora/RH this page might help in knowing what modules and versions are available in the default repositories:

“Fedora Perl Packages”:http://home.comcast.net/~ckweyl/test.html

Broken preCharge

Recently I have been playing with the Business::FraudDetect modules for various reasons, and got into playing with the “preCharge plugin”:http://search.cpan.org/~ivan/Business-OnlinePayment-3.00_07/FraudDetect/preCharge.pm. At first glance, things looked really good, and the majority are. It plugs into the 3.x release of “Business::OnlinePayment”:http://search.cpan.org/~ivan/Business-OnlinePayment-3.00_07/, allows for automated screens before submitting to your merchant account.

The problem is the person who wrote it was apparently doing it just as a contract, and left it. It is missing several important fields, and has a couple of typos that make it not work with the API correctly.

But never fear, and patch has been submitted to Ivan, the BOP owner, and he’ll be adding it in. Not sure if he is wanting to pass the package over to me though.

Also added to BOP, a new feature to request the fraud information from your base class. Handy for future reporting.

BOP::CyberSource is updated

“Peter”:http://www.peterabowen.com/ got around to uploading my patches to the “Business::OnlinePayment::CyberSource”:http://search.cpan.org/~pbowen/Business-OnlinePayment-CyberSource-2.00/CyberSource.pm module finally. If you use BOP, and CyberSource, this is what you need, especially since it takes into consideration the new ‘RequestToken’ fields.

If you have any questions about it, or find a bug, let me know.

OSX Monitor Detection

So I’ve been searching around the net for an answer to a problem I’m seeing. I had this same problem on my old Powerbook g4, and for the last month now on my Macbook Pro. The problem exists with autodetection of an external monitor.

At work, the first thing I do with my laptop is dock up, that is plug in to my wired ethernet, and external monitor via DVI. For a long time this detected the new device, and would auto setup my screens to the chosen configuration. I do this often at home with my tv or an external monitor. Each one has it’s own preferences that automatically apply.

Problem is, starting with work, that stopped. It wouldn’t auto detect. If I manually run the “detect displays” it works as expected (without the whole *auto* part). Something isn’t triggering when the new monitor is plugged in.