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  • Voting with your wallet

    A different take on democratic voting

    Here is a thought that I’ve had kicking around for quite a long time and has recently reoccurred to me. What if budgets and tax allocation were controlled by the population through income tax? I’m sure this is not an original idea, and I have not bothered to look into it.

    Think about it like the humble bundle model, not in terms of pay what you can/want, but the fact that you can choose where your money goes to. The game developer(s) humble them self, or to the current partnered charity. You can give the tax paying population the option to have a say in where their money is spent. While also having the option to not bother with it and be either divided evenly or to preset values (the same as humble). This system can be as course as five macro sectors like education, healthcare, infrastructure, civil defense, and operational/management (i.e. politicians’ salaries). Or it could be as nuanced as specifying a specific project you as a citizen are interested in. of course there will need to be a predetermined minimum for each macro sector just to maintain basic operational costs.

    The method this can be implemented is during tax season you are given an additional forum that you can specify the percentage each macro sector is given.  With major departments listed below plus a write in slot for specific projects. Now you could have the option to disregard the form and everything will be set to “default” values. Unfortunately, this will make the collection process much more complex to record individual allocation and distribution, however with modern IT automation only initial setup would be difficult considering most people generate their tax forms online now. For those that don’t data entry personnel still exist. All taxes collected from businesses would be distributed evenly to the population as a whole to decide on how the money is spent (using the percentages from earlier) this would prevent large multi-billion dollar corporations from throwing all their weight around skewing the system to their favor.

    I would anticipate more than a few changes in what the government will look like. First of all this would give the country’s population more direct control of where they feel the money should be spent(and this is why it will likely never happen) I would expect to see a significant  funding increase to education and infrastructure with a significant decrease to civil defense. With this system I would expect to see; first a huge increase in advertising and public education in each sector as they (budget makers/politicians) will be trying to convince the public to give them funding rather than the publics representatives and will cause them to be much more transparent with their goals and what has been accomplished in the year. It would also put the government in line with how the population (that it is supposed to represent). Say for example the highways and water system are deteriorating significantly everyone bitches and moans about it but in this system, they would be incentivized to fund the infrastructure sector. You feel that teachers need better pay fund the education sector (and specify that it be for personnel) et cetera. Departments would trim back on unnecessary spending just to justify a larger budget for the next year.

    The public will also start to behave differently People with this power would be paying far more attention to what is going on in their own country and how THEIR money is spent. Since in the current system to have any significant impact you need to be a politician. Playing politics has always been a rich mans game making the working/subservient classes apathetic towards what the government dose as they effectively get no say. If it’s their own money, people suddenly become that much more keen on how its used. For example If they see some significant problems in one department or another it will see some pretty harsh cuts during the next year. Granted I will concede the fact that no mater how much power you give to the public, a very high percentage will simply be apathetic and leave it as default. However, I would anticipate the high-income population who tend to hide money in offshore accounts would do so less as they are effectively throwing away their say. I would also anticipate potential issues like media saturation close to tax time. And people trying to bend the system to suite their needs.

                    In the end this would give more power to the people than a representative democracy ever could. And instead of being resigned to complain about one issue or another they could have an actual say on spending decisions, instead of saying “don’t look at me, I voted for Kodos”. This will let the population literally vote with their wallets,

  • Networking: a phoned in analogy

    I was trying to explain to some one how in a fairly top level way the internet works and had a hard time going it this morning it hit me everyone know how to call someone and Generally how phones work so i started writing.

    DNS(domain name server):

    You get a phone and a phone number for your company and no one knows that number but everyone know your company’s name. So to tell everyone your phone# you call up the company that makes the phone books (authoritative name server and registar) and say my companies phone# is XXX XXX XXXX and to inform the phone operators of this. It takes some time for that company to print the updated list and send it to the operators(dns recurser) around the world. So when someone calls the operator (a known phone number by many many people but not all) and asks for company Y the operator says they should call XXX XXX XXXX to talk to you. However if someone from a different city calls their operator (could be a different number entirely) The operator will check their records and say “hold on for a second let me get that information for you” and call the next towns or even the state operator (root server) (sometimes 2 or 3 other towns) and ask “do you know the phone number for Y?” If they don’t which will do the same as the first operator and ask around, until one of them calls your cities operator and get the phone number of your company. this information will get passed all the way back to the original operator and then the client that made the original request. When each operator got that number they wrote it down to ad to their lisk to known numbers for the next time someone asks for company Y.DDNS: same situation as before but instead you had the cheaper option to not always keep the same phone number and so it will change at random(ish) depending on your phone company (dhcp server) but they will tell the receptionist (gateway router) that number when she calls in to ask for the new number in the morning, could be the same as yesterday but could be different. But she will never tell you (local server) what that number is and will only tell you your extension, unless you go read her notes (network status) so to get around this you call a friend that has caller ID (whats my number) and they tell you the number they see on their end. so you call up the phone book company and tell them your new number so the operator can be told of the change

    DDNS (dynamic domain name server)

    Same situation as before but instead you had the cheaper option to not always keep the same phone number and share one in a pool of rotating phone numbers. And so it will change at randomish intervals depending on your phone company’s policies. The phone company will tell the receptionist (gateway router) that number when she calls in to ask if she has a new number in the morning, could be the same as yesterday but could be different. The receptionist will never tell you (the local server) what that number is and will only tell you your phones extension, unless you go read her notes (network status). So to get around this you call a friend that has caller ID (whats my number) and they tell you the number they see on their end. After that you call up the phone book company (registar) and tell them your new number so the operators can be told of the new change.

    DHCP ( Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol )

    Basically the IT guy who manages the phone numbers to each department or in terms of public numbers the phone company managing and assigning a phone number.

    NAT (network address translation)

    You (the server software) are working for a company (subnet) and have a specific extension (port) in your department which has its own internal phone number (server and hardware IP ). You can be reached at lets say extension 443 and someone is calling the phone number they got from their operator and expects to talk to someone at extension 443 to get the information needed. When the client calls they say to the receptionist (router / firewall) “I need to talk to 443” the client cant directly call those internal department phone numbers. The receptionist was told by her manager if someone asks for 443 to forward the call to the department’s leader( firewall) who yells to the room “who has 443?” you (the server software) answers “I do” so they route the call to you who can then openly talk(packets) to the client. If you are sick (server offline) no one answers however the client keeps asking for information and no one responds. so the client hangs up after a while(time out).

    Port forwarding:

    Same as before someone is calling asking to talk to 443 but your department leader (firewall) hates that number and wont let anyone use it (blocked port) so they give you a different extension like 993 for no reason. the receptionist is told that when she calls a department to say “this client wants to talk to 993” even though they originally asked to talk to 443.


    (in a very general sense)

    Outgoing port blocking:

    Just as before someone is calling 443 the receptionist calls your department but because the team lead (firewall) hates 443 he broke the microphone so when you answer the routed call you can hear everything the client says and you keep responding but they cant hear anything back so they hang up (time out). And at each one of the previous steps there is a leader(firewall) who can shutdown the call or send it to a different person along the way if they don’t like something about it (iptables rules).

    Incoming port blocking:

    when a client calls in to speak to extension 022 The firewall tells the client to fuck off (REJECT), He can also not tell anyone that there ever was a call (DROP), or he can send the client to somewhere else entirely(NAT).


    knowing how few actual people visit this site on a daily basis I doubt anyone noticed the downtime. Today I upgraded my internet from my shitty ADSL2+ 15mbps down /.8 mbps up (colba.net paid for 24/1 $40/month with annual lump sum payment) to my new ISP with VDSL2/FTTN and a data rate of 20-22mbps down and 8-10mbps up (pay for 25/10) the difference in price is a $10 cad increase per month. however the modem that they give u seems to be a bit of a pain to use and doesn’t seem  stable hopefully it will settle down in the next few days

    update: whelp i got fed up with the shitty netis modem/router failing all the time and loosing network coning so i reconfigured the network so that the netis is in bridged modem mode and my primary router is managing the traffic instead and so far the internet speed has increased because of it, awesome, and im having no connection issues with the server anymore so i will continue monitoring and hope everything stays solid (managed to get it working in less than an hour instead of the 4-5 hours fucking with the netis interface yesterday)

    I am guessing the netis wasn’t able to handle the network load that we have in our home so it would overload and crash out  but now its only job is to be a network gateway  which only talks to our fiber node also it seems I am on a static IP (or just a very long lease) now so I don’t need to worry about name server propagation downtime when the network craps out or the IP gets rotated  or dealing with mail servers that dont like dynamic ips. However the down side is if my server gets hacked and ends up on a bunch of blacklists for spamming its gonna be a pain in the ass to recover from (speaking from experience)


    update2: Im getting the speed im paying for FUCK YEah

  • Beefgir down maybe for good

    Bad news guys it looks like we wont be able to cover the cost of the host anymore neither beefgir nor myself can front $160 US to pay the host which may result in account termination beefgir is going to put something together  on freewebz because my internet connection cant handle the load that beefgir.net receives  i have a 12000/600kbps connection (adsl2+) and that’s $481 CAD a year or about 5% of my annual income I am sad to see it go but we all saw it coming and beefgir is happy that it managed to keep kicking for 10 full years


    any way he has made one hell of a goodbye page http://beefgirsgoodbyb.webs.com/

    and you can still visit the fourms at http://killernat.com/forums

  • Ginger beer update

    So its been a few months and I have used up most of my ginger beer. I say used up because of a few things. First  I didn’t care all that much for the flavor because i made it from an extract it came loaded with an artificial sweetener  (because it was supposed to be sweet)  so it tastes like a diet soda it dose have a nice kick of alcohol ~10%  and the ginger taste is good if you can get past the diet taste. I ended up giving most of it away as Christmas gifts. every one seems to have liked it though.

    My next planned batch of beer will be a test batch of 8L  of Maple stout that I want to make from scratch.

  • Bottleing ginger beer

    I got my ginger beer bottled today YAY. now to let it do its second ferment for 2-3 weeks. I got 24 750ml bottles from my 5 gallon carboy (yay for mixed units)
    I just used an extract for a base and added a lot of fresh ginger (i also should have reduced the sugar its way too sweet)

    2014-11-07 14.24.03         2014-11-07 14.23.49


    all the barefoot wine bottles are from the recycling bin at work i hope they can handle the pressure

  • Headach = Arduino + PLC;

    For my college’s open house I made an Arduino send serial commands to a Siemens s7-200 that in turn controls a thyristor firing unit to control the speed of a DC shunt motor. I can also send direct commands through a PC via the Arduino. Sorry for the short video I didn’t think about getting video until the last minute.
    I will probably add more to this post at a later date

  • Helpin a friend out

    so I have an old friend that back in high school we kind of started a metal internet radio station that we dubbed black phoenix FM long short short it died. any way a month or so ago he wanted to start it back up so he did his thing (hes studding journalism and he has a strong interest in music especially local groups) and has an internet radio station set up and now he has a live website Black Phoenix Radio so go and give it a listen currently its just classic / pop rock with radiomy news with plans to turn the 8pm to 6am slot to metal. He also posts news about the music industry album releases etc.

  • Dirty Business Practice

    So the other day I had to make a business card for a class I decided to use vista print since that’s what the teacher recommended due to its price point for the most part the design process was somewhat limited with a decent set of templates with their background images. I found one i liked made it up and was fairly happy with it so i went to the check out process. First its all good select your quantity paper stock finish type etc. Problem is if you just click next for the card it takes you through a line of do you want this accessory or that or this shiny thing or maybe a magnet with your design on it etc. then you do a standard checkout process until you give them payment info and show your order review then it gives you one final promotion and if you are not paying full attention you miss it. It gives you 2 options 1 accept without promotion and 2 accept with promotion. well I was going fast so i missed it (and to be honest when you have done enough online orders it becomes pretty automatic). So i accidentally clicked accept with promotion(which is at the bottom of the 2 invoices displayed so i got another 8$ tacked onto my order at the very last step of a standard checkout.

    I see no reason to ever give them any more of my money if they try to get you to buy every other thing they sell just before checkout and then subversively try to trick you into buying more than you want. Ads are fine and fair play even the annoying “buy all our shit” thing before checkout is ok. But tacking on an option after words is down right dirty business practice. Granted its partly my fault for not paying attention, but i got caught in the trap that was designed specifically for people who stopped paying attention to the last step of online ordering (scroll to bottom, click accept order) because of more honest companies. Now i’m stuck with 140 return address labels and i don’t even send mail more than 2 or 3 times a year

    Vista print does everything to trick you into buying more stuff so don’t give them the business.