Some Things Never Change

You remember how the "security" people would occasionally fall asleep in previous years? I am trying to figure out why they are being paid this year. They're the same company as previous years ("Pro-tect"). I noticed early on that they seemed to be less attentive than even the weak effort from prior years. But now, twice, I have walked past "faux guards" who are clearly reading some of the great works of literature, because they don't even look up! Of course, only one of them was at the NOC. I presume that someone is paying for this company to provide something. I can't imagine that the provision of bodies in chairs has great use. But, someone is paying (probably an exhorbitant amount) for these folks to be here and as far as I can tell, the payor is paying for them to read. And sleep...

Similarly, some of the iLabs have once again installed cameras at least partially to solve the "who is surfing porn on that computer" question. Seems that "free" Internet access is too much to resist for many of the convention workers...

Interestingly, and one can only hope purposely, the cover of Linux Journal is completely appropriate for the show. On the cover is a belly dancer to headline an article about the use of Linux by performers. She looks amazingly like the one at the appreciation dinner a few years ago...

This year, in an effort to secure the NOC network, Alice pushed for 802.1x on it. Of course, as has happened in the past, there was an easy technology scapegoat. Whenever something went wrong in the NOC network, the complaint about 802.1x would raise to the ceiling (if there was one, anyway), and they'd shut it off. That didn't fix anything, but it apparently made people feel better. After that, they managed to find their bridge loops (multiple times, including at least a couple to Access Ether) or whatever else was wrong.

Which reminds me...

It seems that one of the InteropNet contributors has a great little proxy device that can scan one's inbound traffic to keep it clean of viruses, etc. So, they put it into the Internet path for the entire show (as I understand it). Up and down, up and down went out Internet access here in the iLabs. It didn't take long for Bert to give up and give us all access to his Squid proxy. Brandon has asked us to try it, again, so I think it's back in the circuit. So far, so good.

I did have a problem earlier that Brandon thought may be the iLabs firewall. I made some changes and still had the problem. Fabio claimed that it could not possibly be the iLabs firewall. When I gave him "that look", he said, "It can't possibly be the iLabs firewall since the iLabs firewall is now a crossover cable!" Sheepishly, I took the remiediation action I should have taken at the first sign. After a reboot (aka Redmond reset), it worked fine. Oops.

As mentioned, the OSS team has managed to consume an obscene amount of Aquavit, so far entirely in small "airline-sized" bottles. Yesterday, Karen pulled a huge bottle from one of her crash boxes and took it to them. I can't tell, yet, whether or not it's been consumed... Stay tuned...

In a sickening example of over-planning by iLabs, the SIP white papers all arrived yesterday, nicely stacked in boxes and printed on glossy paper stock. Furthermore, the OSS (Open Systems Software; I think they did that because they didn't want to be the OSI--Open Systems Initiative) have already got their printed marketing signs posted in their racks to take up all that open space. Rumor has it that they've got open software provisioning a Windows client. Or something like that. I may have it wrong... And there is no truth to the rumor that we're not even done with our white papers and presentation. Really. OK, I'm lying.

This morning, I decided that I'd register on my way in. Let me put it this way: if everyone takes as long as I did, the number of registered attendees will be in the hundreds! Hopefully, I was a good practice for the nice ladies that handled my registration and they'll actually search the database next time...

God bless Ron Jarrell...

Good night, Gracie...