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Christopher Martin
Works at Cisco Systems, Inc.
Lives in Austin, TX
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Christopher Martin

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Important PSA from your friend, the IT Guy, regarding backups:

(Note: if you are intimidating by this at all, I will gladly help set up or verify backup solutions for all my friends and family)

Backups? Do you have them? Are you safe if something should happen to your computer?

Many if not most people I know don't know how to back up their data in a safe and secure fashion. Very many don't even try, and don't think about it until it is too late.

The simple start is 3-2-1. When it comes to any files you care about (say your wedding photos, tax documents, medical history, or the pictures of your departed grandmother), you should have 3 copies of the file, 2 of those copies should not be on your computer, and 1 of them in a remote location.

This can be handled in a few different ways. The easiest is to use an online backup service combined with an external hard drive.

With the external hard drive, you can turn on the backup software present in most modern operating systems (Windows Backup on Windows systems, and Time Machine on Macs), which will give you the first of the two copies you need to have off of your computer. (Note: I do not personally recommend using the options for local hard drive backups from online providers)

With the online backup service, you will get the second of the two copies you need to have off your computer, as well as the copy you need in a remote location. (Unless you see their business name on the building right next to your house, they're in a remote location).

For this method, I just recommend purchasing a cheap external drive, for most of you anything between 500GB and 1TB will be fine. And for the online backup services my two recommendations are:

For those with just one or two computers and no additional concerns: Carbonite ( http://www.carbonite.com/ ). The price is $60/year per computer with unlimited backup storage. It's very much a "set-it and forget-it" solution.

For those with many different computers, who are very concerned about privacy, or who for some reason are using Linux and not maintaining a good backup already, or simply have an extremely tiny amount of data to backup (2GB): SpiderOak ( https://www.spideroak.com ). Their price is free for 2GB, $7/month for 30GB, $12/month for 1TB. They are a little less user-friendly (I will be glad to help any of my friends set it up however), but they do not care about the number of computers used, and have extremely tight-security and care hugely about your privacy.

If you can not afford the service fees associated with backup services, there is another option. If you can get a second external drive, swap them out once a month and keep the disconnected one at a trusted friend's or relative's home.
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 For my more technical friends and family, I really can't recommend SpiderOak enough. They have a "Zero-Knowledge" policy regarding your data... they basically only know how much space you're using on their servers and have no way of actually accessing your data.

Additionally, they offer handy features for synchronizing files between computers, as well as sharing files with others. Think of it kinda like Dropbox in that way... but secure.

Also great because they have Windows/Mac/Linux support, and only care about the space used on their servers, not the number of computers.
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Happy International Pie (Pi) Day!

Pie must be had, I want pictures of people celebrating Pie Day!

... oh, and happy birthday to me. This is a crappy birthday so far.
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No, you have some pi... and take a picture with it!

3.141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375105820974944592307816406286208998628034825342117067982148086513282306647093844609550582231725359408128481117450284102701938521105559644622948954930381964428810975665933446128475648233786783165271201909145648566923460348610454326648213393607260249141273724587006606315588174881520920962829254091715364367892590360011330530548820466521384146951941511609433057270365759591953092186117381932611793105118548074462379962749567351885752724891227938183011949129833673362440656643086021394946395224737190702179860943702770539217176293176752384674818467669405132000568127145263560827785771342757789609173637178721468440901224953430146549585371050792279689258923542019956112129021960864034418159813629774771309960518707211349999998372978049951059731732816096318595
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For my friends looking for late night activities on Saturday. Or my friends from Sherwood who don't want to stay in the cold.

This show is a lot of fun, with a potential for cast interaction. I'll be out there in costume hoping to participate myself.

http://epicdungeonmaster.webs.com/
An interactive fantasy adventure live on stage!
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Was reminded of a great Benjamin Franklin quote today:

"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

There's a lot of context around it that doesn't necessarily apply today. And frankly, the modern context is likely nothing like that which was intended.

I still think the modern context is wonderfully poetic and valuable.
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So... been using them for a few months, and fairly satisfied...

https://travelingmailbox.com/

Since they do all their processing in North Carolina and I use their Dallas address, there is a little bit of delay on mail (which is kinda funny considering that there's a delay regardless, because... mail).

The scans I get are of good quality, in color. I even had one letter forwarded physically to me (my insurance card) and that was handled conveniently. And for the things you no longer want to keep around, it's nice to be able to just tell them to shred it.

I would say I definitely recommend them if you're tired of dealing with a physical mailbox, or especially for my friends who do a whole lot of traveling. (hint hint to all the rennies who run the circuit)

If you don't care about the actual location of the address, use the Sanford, NC address as your mail will get processed just a little faster.

They're also really great if you have privacy concerns, because your address is not related at all to your physical address (much like a PO Box). And since they use physical addresses, the address is valid for all normal uses (I'm planning on updating my driver's license and vehicle registration to my address with them next time I go to the DMV).

Let me know if you have any questions or are otherwise curious!

And because I have no real concerns about it... if any of you want to send me some mail, just send it to:

Christopher Martin
3824 Cedar Springs Rd #801-6611
Dallas, TX 75219

;-)
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So... randomly found out about this from Wikipedia.

Did anyone else know that Netflix is bring back The Magic Schoolbus?
“The Magic School Bus 360°” is part of the company’s expansion in children’s programming. The new show will begin streaming in 2016.
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So... I got meet Felicia Day, play a huge game of Settlers of Catan, see a Delorian, and meet Chris Roberts (not picture)

I would call it a pretty good day.
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This is a good example of all the worst problems we face in IT in a nutshell.

Entitled users bypass IT policies, because they don't understand or don't respect why those policies exist (in this case, national security).

And regardless of political views... conservative thinking in IT is very bad... leading to horrible messes of security flaws and woefully inadequate equipment.

Unfortunately... majority of IT departments have to answer to conservative thinking (which is really excellent for business, finance and most organizational leadership).
If you think Clinton's e-mail scandal is bad, you haven't heard about Scott Gration.
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It seems from what I read that Leonard Nimoy has passed away.

Below is the last post from his twitter account, which is a very nice quote to end on.

Anyone wishing to read details about his passing, here is the New York Times article: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/27/arts/television/leonard-nimoy-spock-of-star-trek-dies-at-83.html
“A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP”
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I had started to write this post talking about law, and social order, and what needs to be done to stop these people. But I'm too angry to write coherently about this right now.

There is a very powerful lesson you learn growing up as a Jew: there is no such thing as a threat against "those people over there." If a mob is killing black people, or Muslims, or Salvadorans, or whatever one day, they will just as happily turn around and kill you and your family the next. What pulls mobs together is not hate for a particular group: it's the joy of hate itself, of being able to express violence with impunity. That includes everything from simple verbal violence -- being able to rant against groups, violently and vehemently, and receiving the approbation of your friends -- to mobs that burn, rape, and murder. It's the joy of having a family whose history is an endless sequence of fleeing, or failing to flee, ethnic violence.

Many people have talked about how there is no "us and them" in such violence; you have probably heard Niemöller's famous "first they came for the Socialists" quote. But when you live this -- when you have call trees for your family members that you go through every time violence happens near them, to see who's all right -- the terror becomes much more real, much more stomach-churning.

When I read this story, or the story of the murders of Yusor Abu-Salha, Deah Barakat, and Razan Abu-Salha in Chapel Hill, I have a terror for my Muslim friends, and worry if the violence will trigger more of it and put them in danger. Likewise the lynching of James Anderson frightens me for my black friends; other murders for trans friends, for Jewish friends, for sex worker friends, for any number of groups of people that I know will be put in danger because violence tends to spread. 

But I know that after that, lying in bed at night, I'm going to have the second worry: that when the violence spreads, my own family might be in danger as well.

Hate is like arson: it is feared not just for what it does, but because it can spread. 

This fire is frightening not simply because it happened, but because it happened four days after the Chapel Hill murders. It's a blaze spreading from one rooftop to another, and it must be put out.

h/t +Saladin Ahmed for the link.
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In his circles
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404 people
Mike “mobileradikal” Corbett's profile photo
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kiare top all's profile photo
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Currently
Austin, TX
Previously
Converse, TX - Lexington, TX - Virginia Beach, Virginia - Newport News, Virginia - Windsor, Virginia
Story
Tagline
A Geek... and a Nerd... and a Dork... can I graduate to a hacker yet?
Work
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Linux Administrator
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Linux, Red Hat, Apache, Nginx, Varnish, MySQL, Ansible, Python
Employment
  • Cisco Systems, Inc.
    Linux Administrator, 2014 - present
  • Rackspace
    Level 1 Systems Administrator, 2013 - 2014
  • ContactWorks
    Technical Support / Linux Admin, 2011 - 2013
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Christopher Martin's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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