Thoughts and Ramblings

General things I find of interest.

New Internet Service

I got new internet service in the past month. Frontier ran fiber into my neighborhood and I’ve been enjoying the benefits ever since. As you can see I have symmetric gigabit. New Router This change did require that I get a new router. Previously I had a Netgate 3100 which was supposed to be able to handle faster than gigabit speeds but in reality it didn’t. It was even worse when you used VLANs, maxing in the ~600Mbps range.

App Disk Images

If you’ve ever installed Xcode via the Mac App Store, you know it can take an hour to install. The reason is not due to its size but the large number of individual files. What if it didn’t have so many small files? Could optimizations made here apply to other apps as well? Overview The idea is simple: instead of storing apps as a constellation of individual files, instead store a disk image with its own filesystem.

Redesign of Time Machine

It’s no secret that Apple’s Time Machine backup solution is clunky at best. For those who are unaware, it backs up a Mac to an HFS+ filesystem using directory hard links. The biggest problem with this is that HFS+ was an old filesystem when Time Machine was first designed and it’s gotten even older since. These days Apple uses APFS as their filesystem on computers and iOS devices but the Time Machine backup still uses the fragile HFS+ filesystem for its backups.

Mike's Old Car

“You should’ve received a notice in the mail about your car’s warranty.” We’ve all had the calls trying to sell us an “extended warranty” for our cars. They rank among everyone’s favorites right beside the scammers from India who try to steal credit card numbers. Most people hang up on these calls but for several years I didn’t. The Credit Card Scammers With many of the Credit Card scammers, I tended to answer a few questions seemingly reasonably (as far as they knew), and then I would ask, “do you feel good with what you do with your life?

Grace has $20 in Her Account

Grace has $20 in her bank account in Pittsburgh, PA as of 7AM this morning. I’ve never met Grace and yet I know this fact about her. I also know her phone number and when she met with people at this bank about her account. How do I know all of this? Grace gave her bank the wrong email address. This XKCD comic exemplifies it well: Over 40 different people have provided companies my email address instead of their own.