Thoughts and Ramblings

General things I find of interest.

My Current Media Setup

After changing my blog over to Hugo, I had to go through many posts to clean up conversion issues and I noticed that I hadn’t mentioned anything about my media setup since 2018. I have since changed the hardware, OS, and softare I use for playback. Hardware For the hardware I bought a “Phantom Canyon” Intel NUC. This machine only needs to have RAM, SSD, and OS added to it and it is ready to go.

Switched to Hugo

You may have noticed that this blog looks a bit different. I’ve decided to ditch wordpress and switch the blog over to Hugo. The primary reason is the maintenance cost for a wordpress installation. This cost comes is two forms: Keeping wordpress up to date Moderating comments Keeping up to date I know that the first can be mitigated by moving over to wordpress’s hosting but I liked the advantages of my domain hosted on my server.

Using Netflix DVDs to Measure The Post Office Decline

I subscribe to Netflix’s DVD by mail service occasionally (yes they still have it). I subscribe until I’ve run through the queue of movies I’d like to see, cancel, and repeat a year later. I’ve done this for several years now and the for the past few years I’ve tracked when disks should arrive and when they actually do. It’s uncommon for a disk to be late but 2022 has seen a dramatic decline in the service the post office delivers.


I got curious about the design of a puzzle a few weeks back using \(GF(5)\), or more specifically, the extension field \(GF(5^2)\). I was hoping that I could find pre-computed examples and while I found many examples of lectures discussing \(GF(5)\), I didn’t find anything with extension fields of it. So I wrote a quick program to find primitive polynomials of degree 2 over \(GF(5)\). For what I had in mind I needed 6 primitive polynomials which could be selected for construction of this field but sadly that was not the case.

The Appearance of Truth

I’ve had a scene from the movie “Man of the Year (2006)” rolling around in my mind for the past several weeks. For those who’ve not seen the movie, it about a comedian by the name of Tom Dobbs, played by Robin Williams, who decides to run for president as a third-party candidate. While he isn’t on the ballot in every state, he does win the states where he is on the ballot and achieves the majority of electoral votes to become the next President of the United States.