personal netspace

Notes ❯ Sun 2023-07-30 23:15

Wow, it's been almost a year since I posted anything to this site. I have a few reasons for that, but the primary one is that I've just been too busy working.

In no particular order, here are some updates:

  • I've made some pretty significant changes in my personal tech stack over the last year or so. There's a bit of a story there, which I may write up in an article at some point, if and when I ever have enough spare time. But in short:
    • I've moved my desktop and mobile computing platform from homebrew Linux-based systems to Apple products and solutions.
    • I've moved all of my critical services (email, messaging, calendar, etc.) to cloud-hosted services (again, Apple).
    • My on-prem servers and storage have been replaced with Synology NAS appliances.
    • I continue to self-host a handful of non-critical services on my VPS infrastructure, but almost all of my bespoke tech stack has been decommissioned. As much as possible, the remainder has been moved to container-based workloads.
    • At some point, I will likely be converting this site from my custom SSG code to something off-the-shelf (probably Wordpress, but maybe something else).
    • I do continue to use Linux-based operating systems for a number of purposes. However, I have divested my personal use of Linux distributions based on or affiliated with commercial entities (e.g. Canonical, Red Hat, and SUSE) in favor of a return to Debian, a community-based distribution. Professionally, I continue to support commercial distributions (this is a change for reasons of practicality, and not a religious conversion).
    • UPDATE 2023-09-28: I've actually had a bit of change of heart on that last item, and have moved my personal servers to CentOS Stream 9. I've also started using Fedora for my Linux workstation/desktop needs (such as they are). There a few reasons for this, perhaps I'll write an article about it. But suffice to say, I've come to realize that I modify stock Debian post-install to a considerable degree. And by the time I'm done, it's almost indistinguishable from CentOS/RHEL. So, really... I might as well just install CentOS to start with, and in doing so, avoid the many debianisms I often find so annoying.
  • I have purged a lot of old note content from this site, and may purge some old articles as well. Moving forward with the site updates, I may or may not even post notes in the future. I just don't have that much to say anymore. Or rather, I'm saying it in a different way (see below).
  • I spent six months (roughly 2,000 hours of work) in 2021 developing the nrrdtools application suite (which amounts to ~25k LOC), and... yeah, I basically don't use it anymore. I'm still maintaining it as an "active" project for now, but it's no longer being dogfooded. I really don't know what I'm going to do with that one. I think there's a lot of really useful code there (particularly the ICS handling integration for mail clients like mutt) that I spent a lot of time debugging. So I'll probably not just throw it away or anything. I don't know, maybe now I finally have a reason to write a CalDAV/CardDAV sync component for the suite so I can continue to toy with it. But honestly... don't hold your breath for that.
  • I've largely dropped out of the FOSS scene. I don't really listen to tech podcasts anymore, I've let my membership lapse in the FSF, and I'm not really following too many FOSS projects any longer. I've not gone anti-FOSS (exactly), but I've backed away from what I would call "active" community involvement. My personal code still continues to be released under GPL for the time being, and any changes to that would be to a more permissive license (e.g. MIT license), not to a less permissive or closed source license. I'll continue to make FOSScan donations, because I do continue to use Open Source software.
  • I am no longer an active Emacs user. "I still have the feels, but baby I got to quit you." Again, there's probably an article here if I ever get the time to write one.
  • I'm currently in the process of preparing for an eventual move back to Las Vegas, although the timetable for that is not set. The current guesstimate is within 12 months. My wife and I are very much looking forward to that happening. Both of us have grown weary of the cold winters and humid summers of Arkansas, and the desert is calling us home.

So, yeah. Lots of stuff has been going on during the period of my digital sequestration. However, you may have noticed that the above doesn't really explain what has been keeping me so busy. Well, for the last 18 months, the near entirety of my focus has been devoted to the task of writing a novel. In fact, I'm currently on the third draft and still deep in the editing process, but I hope to have a finished product within the next six months. At which time, the journey toward publishing will commence. As I plan to publish under a pseudonym, I'll not mention the title or synopsis here, but I will say that it is not a short novel and has been a massive undertaking (far more involved than I thought it would be when I started writing a still undefined "short story kind of thing" in January of 2022).

Anyway, that's it. Still alive. Working hard. Talk to you again in six months (hopefully) when I can pull my head out of the word processor.