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  1. <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
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  4.  <title>Bernie Zimmermann</title>
  5.  <link></link>
  6.  <description>Bernie Zimmermann's Blog</description>
  7.  <generator>PHP 4.2.3</generator>
  8.  <copyright>Copyright &#169; 2017 Bernie Zimmermann</copyright>
  9.  <item>
  10.   <title>A Difference Between Light and Sound</title>
  11.   <link></link>
  12.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  13.   <comments></comments>
  14.   <pubDate>Thu, 04 May 2017 22:52:34 GMT</pubDate>
  15.   <description>
  16.    <![CDATA[<p>I found this distinction between light waves and sound waves very interesting:
  17. </p>
  18. <blockquote>
  19. <p>
  20. As a wave, light was thought to require a medium through which to propagate its energy, much as sound requires air or some other substance to transmit its waves. But light turns out to be quite happy traveling through the vacuum of space, devoid of any medium to carry it. Unlike sound waves, which consist of air vibrations, light waves were found to be self-propagating packets of energy requiring no assistance at all.
  21. </p>
  22. </blockquote>
  23. <p>
  24. It comes from <a href="" title="Neil deGrasse Tyson explains why dark matter matters (and is kind of our frenemy)">an equally interesting article by Neil deGrasse Tyson on why dark matter matters</a>.</p>]]>
  25.   </description>
  26.  </item>
  27.  <item>
  28.   <title>Like Two Ships in the Night</title>
  29.   <link></link>
  30.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  31.   <comments></comments>
  32.   <pubDate>Thu, 04 May 2017 05:34:02 GMT</pubDate>
  33.   <description>
  34.    <![CDATA[<p>Though we passed like two ships in the night<br />
  35. Our waters embraced<br />
  36. And we were both moved</p>]]>
  37.   </description>
  38.  </item>
  39.  <item>
  40.   <title>Pixie 2001-2016</title>
  41.   <link></link>
  42.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  43.   <comments></comments>
  44.   <pubDate>Mon, 15 Aug 2016 22:52:42 GMT</pubDate>
  45.   <description>
  46.    <![CDATA[<p>We lost a big part of our family today.  I still remember the day my wife fell in love with Pixie in a pet store at <a href="" title="Scottsdale Fashion Square">Scottsdale Fashion Square</a>, and there have been so many memories since that it's surreal to think she's gone.
  47. </p>
  48. <p>
  49. <a href="" title="Pixie Profile" class="noDeco"><img src="" width="427" height="640" alt="Pixie Profile"></a>
  50. </p>
  51. <p>
  52. "Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." -- <a href="" title="Quote by Roger A. Caras">Roger Caras</a>.</p>]]>
  53.   </description>
  54.  </item>
  55.  <item>
  56.   <title>Fiat Money</title>
  57.   <link></link>
  58.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  59.   <comments></comments>
  60.   <pubDate>Thu, 20 Feb 2014 16:17:39 GMT</pubDate>
  61.   <description>
  62.    <![CDATA[<p>I've been reading up on <a href="" title="Bitcoin - Wikipedia">Bitcoin</a> quite a bit lately after reading a very interesting, thought-provoking post on the subject by Marc Andreessen, titled <a href="" title="Why Bitcoin Matters">Why Bitcoin Matters</a>.  Though what I've read and learned about <a href="" title="Bitcoin - Wikipedia">Bitcoin</a> itself is probably worthy of a blog post of its own, I learned something tangential tonight about "fiat money," which happens to come up fairly often when reading about <a href="" title="Bitcoin - Wikipedia">Bitcoin</a>.
  63. </p>
  64. <p>
  65. According to <a href="" title="Fiat money - Wikipedia">Wikipedia</a>, fiat money is any money that has been declared by a government to be legal tender.  Or, more interestingly:
  66. </p>
  67. <blockquote>
  68. <p>
  69. A coin containing valuable metal may be considered fiat currency if its face value is defined by law as different from its market value as metal.
  70. </p>
  71. </blockquote>
  72. <p>
  73. And to think I only ever thought of <a href="" title="First Fiat 500 Commercial Featuring Jennifer Lopez">J-Lo</a> whenever I heard the term "<a href="" title="Fiat USA">fiat</a>." :)</p>]]>
  74.   </description>
  75.  </item>
  76.  <item>
  77.   <title>Coldblooded Statistics</title>
  78.   <link></link>
  79.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  80.   <comments></comments>
  81.   <pubDate>Fri, 14 Feb 2014 19:00:34 GMT</pubDate>
  82.   <description>
  83.    <![CDATA[<p><a href="" title="Human vs. Computer" class="noDeco"><img src="" width="223" height="240" alt="Man vs. Machine" style="float: right; margin: 0px 0px 15px 15px;" /></a>
  84. I read an interesting article this morning about <a href="" title="This algorithm can predict a revolution">algorithms that attempt to predict conflict and revolutions</a>.  Having an obvious interest in <a href="" title="Introducing Blab">predictive algorithms</a>, the main premise of the article was more than enough to pique my interest.  However, I found an anecdote in the article about how computers immediately outperformed CIA analysts in predicting future turmoil particularly fascinating:
  85. </p>
  86. <blockquote>
  87. <p>
  88. Why was it so easy to beat the CIA's best analysts? To some extent, the answer has more to do with humans than machines. Imagine the agency's Indonesia expert, for example. He wants to make accurate predictions, but he's also subject to a range of biases that never show up in the data. He wants his work to be exciting and relevant, earning the attention of his superiors; he wants Indonesia to be important in the world. Predictions are also used to direct resources within the CIA, and he may want to attract more of the resources than the Indonesia bureau would otherwise receive. By the time all the biases are accounted for, he's doing only slightly better than a coin flip. The statistics, on the other hand, don't have to worry about internal politics or hurt feelings.
  89. </p>
  90. </blockquote>
  91. <p>
  92. That last line is great (because it's so true), and certainly adds some color to the whole debate about computers and technology taking over jobs we are used to being associated with humans.</p>]]>
  93.   </description>
  94.  </item>
  95.  <item>
  96.   <title>Excerpts from a Review of the Lamborghini Aventador Roadster</title>
  97.   <link></link>
  98.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  99.   <comments></comments>
  100.   <pubDate>Wed, 12 Feb 2014 04:38:32 GMT</pubDate>
  101.   <description>
  102.    <![CDATA[<p><a href="[email protected]/8265377000/" title="[email protected]/8265377000/" class="noDeco"><img src="" width="500" height="333" alt="Lamborghini Aventador Roadster" /></a>
  103. </p>
  104. <p>
  105. There are some impressive and hilarious lines in <a href="" title="Lamborghini's Latest Is Ridiculous in All the Right Ways">Wired's review of the Lamborghini Aventador Roadster</a>.  The following are some of my favorites:
  106. </p>
  107. <ul>
  108. <li>"It puts down 700 horsepower and does zero to 60 in a mind-bending 3.0 seconds."</li>
  109. <li>"Changing lanes or merging with traffic requires checking the mirrors repeatedly while praying to the deity of your choice."</li>
  110. <li>"You've got to climb into an F1 car to get a gearbox that shifts faster than [its 50 millisecond shift time]."</li>
  111. </ul>
  112. <p>
  113. Also, you gotta love the fact that the <a href="" title="Lamborghini Aventador Roadster">Lamborghini Aventador Roadster</a> shuts down one bank of its 12 cylinders anytime it goes into "street mode," which is any speed below 84 miles per hour.</p>]]>
  114.   </description>
  115.  </item>
  116.  <item>
  117.   <title>Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Parade 2014</title>
  118.   <link></link>
  119.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  120.   <comments></comments>
  121.   <pubDate>Sun, 09 Feb 2014 00:16:54 GMT</pubDate>
  122.   <description>
  123.    <![CDATA[<p><a href="" title="Seahawks Super Bowl Parade 2014 #38 on Flickr" class="noDeco"><img src="" width="500" height="333" alt="Seahawks Players Hold Up the Lombardi Trophy" /></a>
  124. </p>
  125. <p>
  126. On February 5, 2014, my family and I braved the 20-degree winter weather to join over 750,000 <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seahawks</a> fans celebrating our team's dominating victory over the <a href="" title="Denver Broncos">Denver Broncos</a> in <a href="" title="Super Bowl XLVIII">Super Bowl XLVIII</a>.  Despite the cold, it was a beautiful day in Seattle and I can't imagine a better behaved crowd, especially at that size.
  127. </p>
  128. <p>
  129. Although the start of the parade was delayed by about 45 minutes, we were up near the start on the corner of Clay St. and 4th Ave. and were among the first fans to see <a href="" title="Seahawks Super Bowl Parade 2014 #11">Marshawn Lynch appear on the hood of the vehicle holding the Seattle Sea Gals</a>.  Despite holding my daughter in one arm so she could see the players and eventually <a href="" title="Seahawks Super Bowl Parade 2014 #37">the trophy (being hoisted by a pillar of the 2013-2014 season, cornerback Richard Sherman)</a>, I was able to get <a href="" title="Seahawks Super Bowl Parade 2014">some decent photos of the team</a> as they made their way down 4th Ave.  More importantly, I was able to experience firsthand, with my family, a memorable day in the history of Seattle sports that I will doubtless never forget.  I also look forward to retelling the story of both <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks stomp Broncos for Super Bowl win">the Super Bowl win</a> and the subsequent parade to my kids and hopefully their kids, as I pass on what is <a href="" title="The Seattle Seahawks are World Champions">a family tradition</a>, never-ending, die-hard support of the <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seattle Seahawks</a>.
  130. </p>
  131. <p>
  132. I debated titling this entry "Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl Parade," but then decided I better add the date since I hope to be writing about another one next year.  Go <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seahawks</a>!</p>]]>
  133.   </description>
  134.  </item>
  135.  <item>
  136.   <title>The Seattle Seahawks are World Champions</title>
  137.   <link></link>
  138.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  139.   <comments></comments>
  140.   <pubDate>Mon, 03 Feb 2014 06:28:36 GMT</pubDate>
  141.   <description>
  142.    <![CDATA[<p>I've been watching the <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seattle Seahawks</a> play since I can remember.  My grandpa was a huge <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seahawks</a> fan and I remember watching games with him in the mid-80s when I was only five or six years old.  When we weren't watching the games, he was throwing passes to me in his front yard and I was doing my best to emulate my favorite player, wide receiver <a href="" title="Steve Largent - Wikipedia">Steve Largent</a>.  Though I didn't quite grasp the concept of the <a href="" title="Super Bowl - Wikipedia">Super Bowl</a> back then -- any ordinary game was exciting to watch at that age -- I grew up learning to appreciate how that game is the pinnacle that all teams and players strive to reach.
  143. </p>
  144. <p>
  145. Unfortunately, my grandpa didn't live long enough to see the <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seattle Seahawks</a> play in a <a href="" title="Super Bowl - Wikipedia">Super Bowl</a>.  When they finally reached the big game in the 2005-2006 season, I was firmly entrenched as a member of <a href="" title="The 12th Man">The 12th Man</a> and had even turned my wife into a die-hard <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seahawks</a> fan.  To say the least, that game <a href="" title="Four years later, Bill Leavy apologizes to Seahawks">didn't go as planned</a>, but the six-year-old version of me still felt a strong connection to the great players like <a href="" title="Matt Hasselbeck - Wikipedia">Matt Hasselbeck</a>, <a href="" title="Walter Jones - Wikipedia">Walter Jones</a>, <a href="" title="Shaun Alexander - Wikipedia">Shaun Alexander</a> and the coach who brought a winning attitude back to the program, <a href="" title="Mike Holmgren - Wikipedia">Mike Holmgren</a>.
  146. </p>
  147. <p>
  148. That being said, the irony isn't lost on me that I now have a five-year-old daughter (not to mention my soon-to-be three-year-old son) and am only now getting to experience what has up until today been elusive -- a <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seattle Seahawks</a> <a href="" title="Super Bowl - Wikipedia">Super Bowl</a> win.  Just as my kids are learning -- through the repeated cheers of my wife and I -- the names of players like <a href="" title="Russell Wilson - Wikipedia">Russell Wilson</a>, <a href="" title="Richard Sherman - Wikipedia">Richard Sherman</a>, "<a href="" title="Marshawn Lynch - Wikipedia">Beast Mode</a>" and the newest coach to bring a winning attitude to the franchise, "<a href="" title="Pete Carroll - Wikipedia">coach Pete</a>," I am finally realizing the joy of my lifelong favorite team getting recognized by everyone everywhere as the best team in the world.  What a feeling!  Sure, the six-year-old version of me would have been proud of the 2013-2014 <a href="" title="Seattle Seahawks">Seattle Seahawks</a> no matter the outcome of tonight's game, but the thirty-four-year-old version of me is reflecting on decades full of losing seasons, <a href="" title="Seahawks add Robinson, Colbert to decimated receiving corps">seasons that seemed cursed</a> and that close-but-no-cigar season eight years ago and realizing that this is what I and the city of Seattle have been waiting for for what feels like forever.
  149. </p>
  150. <p>
  151. We did it, grandpa.  We're world champions.</p>]]>
  152.   </description>
  153.  </item>
  154.  <item>
  155.   <title>Music on YouTube</title>
  156.   <link></link>
  157.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  158.   <comments></comments>
  159.   <pubDate>Tue, 24 Dec 2013 21:43:23 GMT</pubDate>
  160.   <description>
  161.    <![CDATA[<p>Despite my obvious attempt at doing so, I can't put into words how wrong it is that in 2013 so much music is shared and consumed on <a href="" title="YouTube">YouTube</a>.  Someone, somewhere...please <em>fix this</em>.</p>]]>
  162.   </description>
  163.  </item>
  164.  <item>
  165.   <title>Persisting Local Environment Variables When Running sudo</title>
  166.   <link></link>
  167.   <guid isPermaLink="true"></guid>
  168.   <comments></comments>
  169.   <pubDate>Tue, 24 Dec 2013 03:09:30 GMT</pubDate>
  170.   <description>
  171.    <![CDATA[<p>At work I ran into a situation where I needed to be able to set a local environment variable and still have that environment variable be accessible when I ran various scripts with <a href="" title="sudo - Wikipedia">sudo</a> privileges.  After researching the issue as I normally do, I realized that while the information is out there, buried and unfortunately veiled in various <a href="" title="How do I make sudo preserve my environment variables?">forum responses</a>, there really isn't a clear and concise explanation of how to achieve such a thing.
  172. </p>
  173. <p>
  174. I run <a href="" title="Linux Mint">Linux Mint</a>, which is very similar to <a href="" title="Ubuntu">Ubuntu</a>, so this approach should work on either of the two flavors.  The key to ensuring specific local variables persist when you make use of <code>sudo</code> privileges is to make use of the <code>env_keep</code> directive.  Rather than editing the <code>/etc/sudoers</code> file directly, I looked at its contents and realized that it includes files from the <code>/etc/sudoers.d</code> directory, so I created a new file specifically for the purpose of persisting specific local environment variables.  I created a file at <code>/etc/sudoers.d/env_vars</code> with the following contents:
  175. </p>
  176. <pre class="prettyprint">Defaults    env_keep += "my_env_var_to_persist"</pre>
  177. <p>
  178. After doing that, I ran <code>sudo -l</code> to verify that the <code>Defaults</code> entry I added took effect and noticed a complaint about the access permissions on the new file I created.  Since the message asserted that the permissions should be <code>0440</code> on the file, I quickly remedied the situation:
  179. </p>
  180. <pre class="prettyprint">sudo chmod 0440 /etc/sudoers.d/env_vars</pre>
  181. <p>
  182. Once I did that, I ran <code>sudo -l</code> again, verified that the permissions on the new file were no longer an issue, and saw that my new <code>env_keep</code> directive was included among my <code>Defaults</code> entries when running with <code>sudo</code> permissions.  Now, any time I set <code>my_env_var_to_persist</code> as a local environment variable, e.g.:
  183. </p>
  184. <pre class="prettyprint">export my_env_var_to_persist='lodi dodi'</pre>
  185. <p>
  186. ...when I make a subsequent call to a script or process with <code>sudo</code>, that environment variable persists and I can make use of it however I see fit.  A nice simple example of this is calling <code>sudo env</code>.  Try it for yourself and feel the magic!
  187. </p>
  188. <p>
  189. <img src="" width="284" height="152" alt="Gob's Magic" /></p>]]>
  190.   </description>
  191.  </item>
  192. </channel>
  193. </rss>

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