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A Dragon and The Thinker, San Francisco style

On Labor Day I made my way over to the San Francisco Zoo to meet their latest resident: Big Daddy Bahasa, a 2 year old Komodo Dragon. His exhibit opened just days before so it was quite busy as I peered in to get my glimpse of the active little dragon.

Jillian the “baby” tiger continues to grow by leaps and bounds, and I was able to visit the whale exhibit there before it closed. More photos from the day here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pleia2/sets/72157635349876249/

The Jewish High Holy Days have also come and gone. While I’ve never called myself a religious person, I certainly am appreciating the meaning of these holidays and the pause it causes us to take to reflect. I should probably write more extensively about this at some point, but having specific times to communally meditate on specific portions of ones life has been a very valuable experience for me. Secular living doesn’t do that much.

Rosh Hashanah also gave me an opportunity to experiment with a new Challah shape – round! I found a very helpful video on youtube on how to do 6-strand braiding for a round loaf (I did the first demonstrated in the video) and got to work. The result was round…ish:

Last weekend MJ and I took Sunday afternoon to go to the Legion of Honor to explore the Impressionists on the Water exhibit. It’s one that had been recommended to me by a friend and I have wanted to visit the museum since moving here for some of their other cultural items, so it was a treat to finally go. Impressionism isn’t really my style, but I do love the water theme and impressionism lends itself well to it. They had several Monets on display, but I found myself particularly drawn to those by Renoir. We were able to check out some of the regular exhibits as well, and of course visit the cast of The Thinker that they have at the entrance to the museum, making it my 2nd visit to a cast of The Thinker, the first being the one in Philadelphia.

More photos from outside the Legion of Honor on that oh so foggy day here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pleia2/sets/72157635499889555/

On Wednesday I hosted an Ubuntu Hour where my friend Grant Bowman brought along his Nexus 7 with Ubuntu Touch running on it for attendees to play with. The Touch was a hit with attendees as we got to explore the swipe gestures that really make Ubuntu Touch an exceptional interface. The build didn’t have camera support, which was pretty disappointing since the Nexus 7 was the device all the initial demos were done on last year at the Ubuntu Developer Summit in Copenhagen. Grant also blogged about getting the device installed here: Touch Demo Preparation

Over these past couple of weeks as MJ reworked our network I also worked to get a physical KVM setup at desk now that I have a work desktop, in addition to my personal desktop and my firewall/Nagios server/backups machine that I also have connected to a monitor. I now have a combination of physical KVM and Synergy connecting my 3 machines to 2 monitors and a single set of keyboard+mouse. And it all ended up being more complicated than I anticipated, with my insistence upon using my old IBM keyboard that is PS2 (rather than USB) with the USB-based KVM and needing an extension USB cable for the goofy physical KVM setup I wanted. I also took the opportunity while ordering parts to upgrade my personal desktop to 16G of RAM (changed my life!) and buy new speakers and headphones for use at my desk, and in the case of headphones, for travel too.

Finally, I have to admit that I’ve been quite tired lately and my schedule has been partially driven by unusually frequent headaches. I’m working to address this but it has caused me to be hyper-focused on my paid OpenStack work and less diligent with my volunteer Ubuntu work these past few weeks. Instead I’ve been sleeping more and doing more media consumption, which means a bit more television than usual and a lot more reading. I’m happy to say my stack of magazines is significantly smaller and I’ve enjoyed catching up on some fiction, but I do hope to get back to my productive self soon. Thankfully I work on great teams and am able to prioritize things so that I don’t think much is blocking on me at this point and I can get the rest I currently need.


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