Celebrating 1000 Posts

1,000 Posts on this BLOG


It has been a lot of work and a lot of fun. I enjoy reading and writing. I expect to do more in the coming years. With retirement I should be able to structure my time and do even more worthwhile projects like HowTos and videos. Starting in June I will have nothing much to do all day except finish (or, perhaps, enter the second phase of ) landscaping our yard and work on the BLOG. Next winter, I should be able to let the yard sleep and concentrate on IT. An on-line book or two could happen. I might start by publishing a HowTo building an entire FLOSS system for a school or office from scratch. A lot of schools treat IT as though they either have to buy it off-the-shelf or be computer-geeks. There is a middle ground where just about anyone can become a computer geek with a little help. Most people can follow a recipe. A Wiki has advantages for extensibility but it is not printable easily. A LyX document might be a better medium. Then PDF or HTML can be built from the same project. I will have to look into a version control system.

The beauty of this blog is that while I have done a bit of work many people contributed useful comments and links which greatly increases the value. That helps keep me sane in that I do not have to operate in a vacuum. I thank all who have commented and contributed. Many have made suggestions of things I could do that might be more valuable. I have adopted some, ignored some, and will do some of those in the future.

My priorities for the current school year are to complete documentation of the IT system in my school and to train a member of the staff to its operation. We both have other day-jobs so time is short. By working together on projects I hope to shorten the familiarization period. The gentleman has been using GNU/Linux on the desktop for a few months and has used a thin client so the system should make sense as more is revealed. The release of Debian Squeeze is imminent and he has been using it so there should be no big surprises. I can help over the web or by SSH if necessary after I retire. Documentation is the key. By using searchable documentation with a printed copy we should have a very efficient means of maintaining continuity. We do not have a lot of redundancy so trouble-shooting skills/resources are vital. The next 20 client machines have still not arrived. Perhaps they will come by truck over the winter roads. All shall be revealed eventually. Students and my trainee will gain experience commissioning the new machines. In the long run our growth in IT-capability seems to be out-stripping our needs by a large margin. We now have 14 machines suitable to be GNU/Linux terminal servers when we only had 2 last year. Just 2 of the newer machines would be capable of running the whole school. It should be about 5 years before the supply of XP-capable machines dries up so our main need is to update the terminal/file servers. Probably we should add LDAP and an internal e-mail system this semester. Some better network switches and repairs to cabling are on the wishlist.

In the larger world of IT, I see many things happening in 2011, almost all of them are huge positives. ARM will advance on all fronts as will GNU/Linux. I see thin clients moving along smartly. Many will use the expensive VDI systems but many will revel in the efficiency of an old-fashioned virtual terminal provided by the x-window system of GNU/Linux. If GNU/Linux evolves away from X, there surely will be some suitable networked display to permit the thinnest of thin clients to operate. There are moves to eliminate the VGA adaptor but I cannot see that being universal. There are just too many VGA monitors out there with years of life left. Changing the connector is one way to make thin clients obsolete but they are a quick-to-market product and can adapt. I see an end to up-selling. It delayed innovation but has not stopped it. Small cheap computers will soon be everywhere.

Change is inevitable and often the old generation tries to slow things down. I relish change as long as it frees us from monopoly and gives us efficient IT.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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3 Responses to Celebrating 1000 Posts

  1. oldman says:


    Congratulations on your milestone. I look forward to your posts and our discussion.

    A Happy and Healthy New Year to you and your family!

  2. Dann says:

    Use LaTeX and have a cron job constantly submitting changes (if any) to a local network svn/cvs server for version control.

    I use Kile personally to do my document editing. It’s a tabbed text editor based on Kate (another personal favourite) with a heck of a lot of options available if one needs it.

    I look forward to your future conquests!
    And Merry Christmas!

  3. Ray says:

    Merry Chistmas! 😀

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