site downage

i want to apologize for and explain the recent downtime this site has seen. first, my site [the resistance army, generally; my blog (tofu == love), specifically] was being hosted on an old beige 233 g3 powermac with a whopping 128mb ram and a 4 gb hard drive. a powerhouse of a machine, right? it was back in bloomington, indiana in a friend’s office just sharing his network connection. it wasn’t a screaming fast network, but was way good enough for my paltry needs.

the reason it was back there was like this. back in 2001, i got laid off from a pretty sweet flash programming job at wisdomtools along with 30 or so other people. hard times and over inflated companies. so while i was looking around for some more work, i stumbled across imagination street which now defunct. they were a small web shop that had a sweet office setup in bloomington right above plan 9 video and the book corner. needless to say they were paying a pretty penny for that space. as business slowed down they realized they couldn’t do that space anymore. not enough scrilla. so they moved across the square above talbots [ugh, god forsaken talbots. seriously who in their right mind shops at talbots?]. they got a pretty good setup at a pretty sweet location subletting from a guy who realized he didn’t need a whole floor of office to himself. enter steve g. volan.

steve was one of the two brothers who started bluemarble, a local ISP in the early days when an ISP was still a reasonable business to start. bluemarble has since merged / been bought by smithville. steve had since moved on from bluemarble and was doing his own thing under the name of the agate workshop [which he still does]. he also now owns and runs and awesome video store / small theatre call the cinemat in bloomington. steve’s an awesome dude. he’s young enough to be a friend; old enough to be a mentor kind of role. the hours we’ve spent talking are so dear and valuable to me.

so anyhow, imagination street moves into steve’s offices. i continue to do contract work for them. then one day out of nowhere, they’re like “uhh… we’re filing bankruptcy and closing up shop and moving out. sorry.” weird. i understand. the bubble bursting and all that. but i had grown accustomed to having an office and desk and internet and stuff OUTSIDE of my house. so i worked things out to sublet directly from steve just a desk in his office / storage room. my friend boice tomlin got in on it, too. then later kurt whitsel whom also worked at wisdomtools and was laid off the same time i was. and for a time things were good. we were each paying very very little to have a desk and an office and screaming network connectivity.

[ boice later moved to portland and was living The Life there for a few years, i think. and it seems like he’s back in bloomington and is still doing web development which is awesome. his company is called runskip. boice was one of those people in my life helped to steer me down a path i might not’ve taken, but am glad that i did. that path was PHP. php ended up being a really big change for me and was all i did for the next few years. so much so that i’ve considered getting a php tattoo (like this but on my calves). the path of php is littered with curly braces, question marks and semi-colons. its a messy path. but its the path that lead me to where i am today. ::cough:: rubyonrails ::cough:: and i’m happy with where i am these days. so thanks, boice. i owe you one.]

then i started traveling a bunch, then moved away from bloomington. so i moved my computer into the server room and just used it as a webserver for my little projects. then steve started getting charged more for t1 line or whatever he had. so i started getting charged more. and for what it was [my own machine collocated that i had physical access to, a static ip and no sharing with other people ] the price was still great. but i reached a point where i didn’t want to be a sysadmin anymore, b/c frankly i’m no good at it and it bores me. other people love it and are very good and doing it. so needless to say, i’m sure i did plenty of things that you shouldn’t do as a sysadmin. so things went wrong.

my machine had the physical limit of 10.2.8. ugh. i couldn’t run a lot of the updates i wanted to. i also didn’t know how to install software packages remotely under jaguar. [look, i know there is XPostFacto, but i thought it was flaky when i tried it. and i also know i could’ve run linux on my powermac, but i’m not into that.] so somehow someway something bad happened. and recently steve started noticing some Serious Network Slowdown, ran some tests, deduced it was my machine and unplugged it. that’s fair. it was causing problems for everyone else. i had even noticing that it was making my blog posts incredibly slow to upload. all this happened while i was traveling recently. so i couldn’t really do anything i got home. so there was two weeks on downtime.

steve put it back up long enough for me to download what i needed. then i migrated to a new host: TextDrive. and things seemed good again. then i was rearranged the domains on my TxD account and managed to bork my blog. again. but things are sorted out now. i’ve got about 20 posts started in the drafts folder. so i’ll try to stay on it a little better.

and that, my 4 loyal readers, is why the site has been wonky lately and is now back in full effect.

tags : [ blog ( ), textdrive ( ), boice tomlin ( ), steve volan ( ), imagination street ( ), wisdomtools ( ), mac os x ( ), sysadmin ( ), php ( ) ]

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