March of the Machines (Automation)

Saw a tweet about and interesting piece in ABC News Australia Digital disruption: How science and the human touch can help employees resist the march of the machines. Basically, many jobs are going away due to automation. W.I.R.E.D. has a similar story: Robots Will Steal Our Jobs, But They’ll Give Us New Ones. One of the long… Continue reading March of the Machines (Automation)

Convert Webserver.log to CSV

A security guy at a campus wanted our web server log file in the CSV format. The original file has lines which look something like: machine.usg.edu: webserver.log13646,2010-11-30        11:08:32        0.0010  999.999.999.999    b7tPM1hTgGYMn90bLTM1    200     GET     /webct/urw/lc987189066271.tp1333853785371/blank.html    –       262     “Mozilla/5.0… Continue reading Convert Webserver.log to CSV

Failed Sessions

For exactly two months now I have been working on a re-opened issue (on Oct 7, 2009) where sessions appear to die in Blackboard Vista 8.0.2 hf1. The first time this came up, Blackboard support wanted us to overhaul the session management. BIG-IP documents saying attempting this new method was a horrible idea caused us… Continue reading Failed Sessions

Useful User Agents

Rather than depend on end users to accurately report the browser used, I look for the user-agent in the web server logs. (Yes, I know it can be spoofed. Power users would be trying different things to resolve their own issues not coming to us.) Followers of this blog may recall I changed the Weblogic… Continue reading Useful User Agents

Email Harvesters

I missed the story about brothers convicted of harvesting emails the first time. Well, I noticed a followup. Back around 2001, the CIO received complaints about performance for the web server. So, I went log trolling to see what the web server was doing. A single IP dominated the HTTP requests. This one IP passed… Continue reading Email Harvesters

Better CE/Vista Web Server Log

Some support tickets are more easily solved by knowing both user behavior and environment. An often helpful piece of information is what web browser they used. To add this, shut down the cluster, edit /VISTA_HOME/config/config.xml to include the cs(User-Agent), and start the cluster. This line will need to appear for every node. At startup, the… Continue reading Better CE/Vista Web Server Log

Most Wired Teacher

“Who is the most wired teacher at your college?” (A Wired Way to Rate Professors—and to Connect Teachers) Although the university runs workshops on how to use Blackboard, many professors are reluctant, or too busy, to sit through training sessions. Most would prefer to ask a colleague down the hall for help, said Mr. Fritz.… Continue reading Most Wired Teacher

WordPress Error: This file cannot be used on its own.

In posting a comment to a friend’s WordPress blog, it came up with the error: Error: This file cannot be used on its own. I was responding to a comment, so I doubted that he broke his blog between making a comment and my response. So I went looking though my own install. Essentially, at… Continue reading WordPress Error: This file cannot be used on its own.

Tale of Defeating the Crazy Woman

Babies are fascinated by me. When the two of us are in a room, they often find me the most interesting thing in the room. Usually, it is mutual. So, a mutual friend of a friend, Mojan has a fantastic blog. The past year or so has been about being pregnant and most recently figuring… Continue reading Tale of Defeating the Crazy Woman