Rebuilding the Blog

Rebuilding the Blog.

Well, I have decided on a blog name. Using my name is real original. However, it was suggested by these two posts that one should actually use your own name for the domain name. You can read them here:

I think I can live with this domain name. I think I may have gotten over my need to be a lurker on the internet. I think I want to graduate finally from being a wannabe blogger to a real one.

I still need to move over some of the old content that I had. Some of the posts are good, some posts desperately need to go through a spell and grammar checker.

The Quest for a Healthy BMI

I let myself go to pot starting in my last semester of my MBA. All I cared about was to finish the class with an excellent grade. Afterwards, the letdown did not help. I put on at least 25 pounds.

Yes, I know that BMI is a flawed system. However, it is a good estimate for average people. I am not going to allow the flaw in the system to be my excuse.

This year, it is finally all or nothing. My goal weight is 174 pounds. I decided to choose a number that was between health and overweight, then round down.

Some of the reason:

I want to feel good about myself.

This extra luggage is hard on my joints. I do not want to be an arthritic person when I get old.

I like being athletic. I feel that I need to be around 200 pounds before I can safely let myself go out.

I do not want to get diabetes or cardiovascular disease. If you want a scare, check out http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/files/docs/guidelines/ob_gdlns.pdf. Especially Table ES-4.

Suzy Kat

Suzy Kat

This is Suzy. She came to my yard about 3 months ago abandoned and extremely emaciated. Probably is the sweetest cat around. I believe that she is the current Baroness of the yard. She does not do it by force, but by ignoring the boys and does not wander around.

I need to take her to the vet. I hope that she is not chipped. The last cat I took to the vet was chipped, but the previous owner did not care enough to keep their information up to date with HomeAgain Pet Rescue. I am concerned about going to the vet because she may also have a chip, and the previous owners may want to take her away.

Happy Independence Day

Happy 4th. I read this over at Zero Hedge. It worth re-posting it here.

*However, there should be hope...* As*STA Wealth Management's Lance Roberts notes,* as you celebrate the 4th of July with your family and friends, it is vitally important to remember exactly what we are supposed to celebrating. The following excerpts are from the Independence Day speech given by *John Fitzgerald Kennedy *(then just a candidate for Congress) on July 4, 1946. I encourage you to read the speech in its entirety.

Read more…

Process and the art of procrastination

One of the things that I enjoy studying is process. It is the study of how you do things. I like studying how someone else does it, then either improve or incorporate it into how I do things.

The problem with that is the fact that one can waste so much time learning how to be efficient or learning what is best practices is. When push comes to shove, it really is the Yoda saying of either “do or do not.”

Earlier this year, I had promised myself that I would keep an academic blog and a personal blog. Blogging for me is not about idea or verbiage, it is about finding the time and or just doing it.

My latest form of procrastination so I would not have to write a blog entry was whether to use Markdown or reStructuredText. Both are good languages, the issue is which one would be better to become better at going forward. Markdown is actually much easier. Restructured Text allows me to add code to the post. I only really have time to master one.

However, it really does not matter since I write all my posts first in Microsoft Word. This is the reason: Microsoft word is my word processor of choice.

Why Microsoft Word? Well, it is not for the lack of trying other products that are either cloud or PC based. Most word processors are lacking when it come to academic writing. Plus, I can use Grammarly directly. I tend to not embarrass myself as much in writing as much. Win all the way around.

What does Microsoft Word have to do with blogging, process, reStructuredText, and Markdown? Absolutely nothing. I am worrying over nothing when it comes down to using the two document formatting languages. I usually write posts in Word, then use pandoc to convert the Word document to reStructuredText which is used by the static blogging software that I currently use. My worries about what to use were nothing more than procrastination.

This blog post can be defined as procrastination on top of procrastination. I should be reading the chapter titled: “Foreign Direct Investment” for my “Competing in a Global Environment” class.

pfsense snort suppress list

Note

This list is no longer maintained.

This is my current snort suppress list. The reason why they were added was because basic functionality was prevented and represents a compromise between security and usability. These suppress rules were added when I determined that they prevented legitimate use (email, ssh server access, etc). I may one of these days regret the chooses made. The last two additions were made because they limited functionality at jcpenny.com:

  • 1:17232 FILE-IMAGE Microsoft Kodak Imaging large offset malformed tiff - big-endian

  • 1:17232 FILE-IMAGE Microsoft Kodak Imaging large offset malformed tiff - big-endian

Without further ado, here is the list:

Read more…

Moodle courses without students and teachers

Moodle courses without students and teachers

A good place to start with Moodle ad-hoc reports can be found here: ad-hoc contributed reports. Moodle rooms have a tool that allows you to create reports. Issue with it is that it does not always run sql that can be run with other tools.

These are two reports that I did for this tool.

First one was for total number of courses with no users by category.

SELECT *
FROM
  (SELECT cr.shortname,
        cr.fullname,
        COUNT( ra.id ) AS enrolled
  FROM `mdl_course` cr
  JOIN `mdl_context` ct
  ON ( ct.instanceid = cr.id )
  LEFT JOIN `mdl_role_assignments` ra
  ON ( ra.contextid     = ct.id )
  WHERE ct.contextlevel =50
  GROUP BY cr.shortname,
        cr.fullname
  ORDER BY `enrolled` ASC
  ) courses
WHERE enrolled = 0;

The second was to list the names of the courses.

SELECT DISTINCT
  (SELECT name FROM mdl_course_categories WHERE id=catid
  )                AS Semester,
  COUNT(shortname) AS empty_class
FROM
  (SELECT cr.shortname,
        cr.fullname,
        cr.category    AS catid,
        COUNT( ra.id ) AS enrolled
  FROM `mdl_course` cr
  JOIN `mdl_context` ct
  ON ( ct.instanceid = cr.id )
  LEFT JOIN `mdl_role_assignments` ra
  ON ( ra.contextid     = ct.id )
  WHERE ct.contextlevel =50
  GROUP BY cr.shortname,
        cr.fullname
  ORDER BY `enrolled` ASC
  ) courses
WHERE enrolled = 0
GROUP BY semester
ORDER BY catid DESC;

Helpful Tips for MBA Students

I was fortunate when I entered the MBA program that I had transferred directly from a bachelor's completion program at CSUCI. Even with that, it still did not change the fact that most of my professional life was working with technology. The courses I had taken before I entered the bachelor's completion program were geared towards computer science.

So far, in the MBA program, every class has three similar characteristics: writing, group projects and presentation. Here are few things that will be helpful:

  • Look into Grammarly. Remember what I stated about writing? Not only are you expected to write, you are expected write with proper grammar. Your grades may suffer not because of the content, but because of the presentation level of writing. Grammarly also has a plagiarism checker. It cost about $140 per year, and it is worth every penny.

  • You need to be aware of what plagiarism is. Grammarly includes a plagiarism checker. This blog post was written 100% off my head. Yet the plagiarism check at the time of the check stated that this blog post was 23% unoriginal. Scary eh?

  • In spite of all the free alternatives, Microsoft word still rules. I have tried to use other programs to do my homework. However, it just was a waste of time. Word and Excel will make your life comfortable.

  • Learn APA format. Although some Instructors will allow you to to use any format, APA format is the format for business papers. An excellent resource is the Purdue Online Writing Lab. As an MBA student, you can leave the abstract section out.

  • Learn a collaboration suite. Remember that you will be doing a group assignment? Most of your fellow students will not live near you. If you are like me, you may have a full-time job. Google docs is excellent. It has all the features that you want in a collaborative suite. Lately, I have been using Microsoft Live's OneDrive instead. Since OneDrive is closer to Microsoft Office suite, I find that I get more buy in with my group partners.

  • Learn a presentation software. Every class you take as a CSUCI MBA student will have a presentation. As much as I like Prezi, I have reverted back to PowerPoint. My issue with Prezi is not that it is bad. On the contrary, it is an excellent presentation software. My issue is that it takes me four times as long to create a presentation that looks proper. PowerPoint is the standard and time is one thing that you cannot waste.

  • Look into a project management software. Originally I was using Trello. Currently, I am using Asana. Trello is an excellent program, but it is is not for me. I am more task oriented. I wished I knew about Asana when I started in the BS completion program. Asana would have made my life easier.

  • You need to be aware of what a case study format is. You will be doing quite a few two to three-page case studies, mostly from Harvard Business Review. The format is simply write an overview, analyze, make recommendations. Where beginning MBA students get into trouble is that they will confuse analysis with writing a summary. In a case study, an overview, is at most three paragraphs. The bulk of the case study is an analysis. If you are not sure, ask.

Academic Blog

The concept of static web generators caught my attention one day. While researching the concept, I ran into a site with a web page titled: Use Jekyll for Your Academic Site. The site had a link titled: 6 blog tips for busy academics. Well, between those two sites, I have decided to give blogging as a MBA student a try . They gave pretty good arguments on why a graduate student should have a personal accademic blog.

Currently, I have a rough format for the site. I think I have procrastinated enough for tonight. I still need to finish my final for BUS 540 that is due Tuesday September 9th.

Back to work for me.

Rebuilding the blog

Well, I can't help myself. I have to try something new and am giving up on Wordpress. Instead, I am going to use a static web creator. There is nothing wrong with Wordpress. I just see so many more benefits of static web sites. Only issue is that I do need to move my content over. Plus editing is currently in a Virtual Box

Benefits are:

  • No Mysql backend
  • No PHP
  • HTML is much more Secure
  • One less application layer to worry about.
  • I may be able to host on S3
  • No more tweaks to make it fast.
  • I don't have to use a free or paid WP hosting plan.
  • As with any site that is self-hosted, you own all rights to the content. None of this "Right to use your content royalty free in perpetuity"

Of the Static generators, I have tried Pelican, and now Jekyel. Pelican appealed to my python programmer side of me. However, whatever is simple and one will do, is always the best.

Still need to do updates, however, my chores and MBA studies are getting the way. I have to leave the blog with things to do. Also, I have my business site to redo, and my college website to do. I probably will be using nanoc for my business site.