Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

welcome to the collapse
Clusterfuck Nation
Peak Oil

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   sprinkled like tiny islands in a sea of impostor syndrome
Friday, January 31 2020
In my workplace for over a week or so, I've been trying to assemble an environment for serving code being built by an outsourcing team located in Ukraine. In keeping with the way things are already done, I've been trying to use a deployment system called Jenkins, which is already used for automating the deployment of code. Jenkins is configured via a series of web pages, but it was all a bit overwhelming at first. Eventually, though, I figured out that every deployment system ("build") gets its own icon presented in a list in the Jenkins dashboard. By clicking a configure icon, stages to the build can be added, removed, or edited. Those stages are usually pulls from git repositories, shell commands such as npm run build, or calls to modules that do things like FTP files from one place to another. The builds take place in a Jenkins subdirectory called a workspace, where things happen much like they would in a local copy of a repository. Oddly, all the credentials are set in one place in the configuration for the entire Jenkins instance. Once I had all that figured out, I managed to do some Jenkins builds from BitBucket repositories running a copy on my laptop. At that point I ran up against the limits of my knowledge of Windows. I tried setting up users with FTP accounts on Windows servers I had access to, but I couldn't get any of them to work. Also, it wasn't clear that it was possible to give a Windows user accessing a Windows computer via FTP his own FTP home directory if other FTP users were getting directories in a particular pattern. I could've researched all this stuff, which would've probably just ended in my being in a rage, as the Windows UI is full of things that look intuitively helpful but are dead-ends (such as the Permissions button on the Advanced Sharing window). So yesterday I reached out to New Dave to see if he could get FTP working for me on the server I want to implement this on. After some back and forth and a couple face-to-face meetings, it was clear that Dave didn't know any more about setting up a Windows FTP user than I did. So I talked to Marcus, my ever-frazzled former boss. This was when I learned a number of interesting things about Windows. The most important of these was that accounts in the Windows Administrator group can FTP into a server and make changes to any directory they want to alter, no configuration necessary. Once I knew that, it was trivial for me to get Jenkins to do what I wanted, and before long I had the deployment pipeline working. I'd told my boss Alex I hoped to get this done by the end of the day Friday, and I had two hours to spare. This provided a little boost to my confidence and sense of competence, which comes rarely in this particular workplace. These feelings are sprinkled like tiny islands in a sea of impostor syndrome.
Meanwhile, Marcus had organized lunch for the office, all of which came from the Golden Wok. As usual, I ordered the mixed vegetables in garlic sauce.
This evening the tenant in the attic apartment at the Downs Street brick mansion would be moving out and the new tenant would be coming to pick up the key. Gretchen wanted me to come along to "repaint" a section of wall that had been damaged by a roof leak. But when we got there, it was clear that what needed to happen was wall repair. Meanwhile, the departing tenant was running behind schedule even with the assistance of her mother. Gretchen was annoyed, though I didn't see this as being anything worse than mild flakiness (and certainly not something worthy of raids on the tenant's security deposit). I drove out to Home Depot and got a small container of joint compound and, when I got back, fixed the damaged wall in a minute or two.
After the key handoff, I suggested we go to The Anchor, the divey bar/music venue nearby on Broadway. I'd had fond memories of the last time we'd been to The Anchor, when a live band had been doing surprisingly good covers of Black Sabbath and we'd had veggie burgers with fries. There was no band tonight, so the place almost felt like a family restaurant (the kind that hires staff with piercings and tattoos). We ordered black bean chickpea burgers, which come with a big slice of roasted red pepper. Gretchen took one bite of it and declared that it was "super hippie," by which she meant it contained way too much cumin. Maybe we've been spoiled by all the recent advances in veggie burgers, but neither of us thought it was a good sandwich. The fries were good and The Anchor has vegan mayo as an option, so it wasn't a completely bad experience. But, as Gretchen noted later, it was a waste of a meal, adding, "If I'm going to get fat eating something, I want it to at least taste good." For drinks, Gretchen had a tiny four ounce glass of some sort of ruby-red sour beer that tasted exactly like vinegar. I had some kind of IPA that, though complicated, didn't match my preferred taste profile.

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