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Author: Rowan Rodrik

My zeroth year at university

Maybe my biggest accomplishment to date—maybe my only real accomplishment, if your glasses are so colored by society's standards—has been to be accepted to the University of Groningen as a fulltime biology student. To apply, I had to send my curriculum and a letter of motivation. Which motivation? I wasn't so sure that I'd like to be a student. Actually, I had been quite certain for most of my adult life that I really did not want to study and waste all that precious time for a few crums of knowledge. Read More »

Trying to reduce MySQL InnoDB disk usage after major reduction of data

So, two days ago, I tried to shrink my MediaWiki database and it almost worked, except the MySQL process wouldn't shrink along with it. Read More »

Shrinking/compressing a MediaWiki database

As of late, I haven't had a lot of time to chase after spammers, so – despite of anti-spam captchas and everything – a couple of my wikis have been overgrowing with spam. One after the other I've been closing them down to anonymous edits, even closing down user registration alltogether, but some a little too late. Read More »

How to test payformystay.com

I haven't got much experience when it comes to testing web applications. Instead (and more so out of apathy than belief), I've always adhered to the ad-hoc test approach. However, the usage of pure Posgres unit tests back when I worked on a complicated investment database with Halfgaar did teach me the advantages of test-driven development. Read More »

Internet Explorer in VirtualBox 4.1 in Ubuntu 10.10

I've been needing IE for testing payformystay.com for some time now, but now I'm studying and I need it to work with some interactive Silverlight stuff. Read More »

Why doesn’t he just…

You know the conversation. You had the conversation: “Why doesn't he just …” Read More »

Commenting fixed for blog.bigsmoke.us

To my great surprise, thanks to Tobias Sjösten, I found out that commenting was broken on blog.bigsmoke.us. I couldn't pinpoint the exact problem, but it must have been introduced with some WordPress upgrade somewhere along the line. I never noticed it because it did work for logged in users. (If I must really guess, I suspect a silent ReCaptcha version compatibility problem.) Read More »

Psychopathic Saturday

I'm trying to pump up myself to write a piece of text about psychopathy. All three other group members already wrote their part. We're making a scientific poster titled “Is there a psychopath hidden in your brain?” But, do I even want to know? It's all very close to home, with a mother who's been accusing her ex-husband (my dad) of being a psychopath for, like, forever, and, simultaneously, this monkey in my brain, pointing it's accusative little finger straight at me. Read More »

I am naked and feeling very vulnerable

There are many clever ways to tell you this. There are many ways to deceive. But in the end I feel that more often than not the deception merely serves to reinforce that image of a very vulnerable naked man. Read More »

MediaWiki ConfirmEdit/QuestyCaptcha extension

Since I moved my LDAP wiki over from DokuWiki to MediaWiki, I've been burried by a daily torrent of spam. Just like with my tropical timber investments wiki, the ReCaptcha extension (with pretty intrusive settings) doesn't seem to do much to stop this shitstream. Read More »