You know how easy it is to lose touch with friends, family, and all the important people who make up your life? Well, it's a connected world now and we no longer have an excuse to let good friendships drift away. The White Spot (North) is my attempt to keep all the people in my life up-to-date on what's going on with me and all of us, any time, even if we can't get together as often as we'd like for reasons of time or distance.
The White Spot diner in Charlottesville, VA was a gathering place for my college buddies and me during some of the best times of my life. I now live north of it, but the name captures the essence of these pages: a place where old and new friends can gather, have a couple of laughs, and keep in touch with each other.
I frequently get asked about my web pages, the WS(N) servers, and what I need to get all this up and running. Here's a start.
Since mid-2009, the WS(N) server has been a Dell Studio XPS 435T workstation, replacing the Sun W1100z that had been doing the job so well since 2005.
Here are some specifics about the WS(N) server:
- 2.66GHz Intel© Core™ i7-920 processor with 4 cores / 8 threads
- 6GB of tri-channel DDR3 SDRAM memory @ 1066MHz
- 16X SATA CD / DVD±RW burner
- 500GB of mirrored SATA hard disk space
|WHITE SPOT (NORTH) SOFTWARE|
|FTP Server||Washington University FTP|
|Mailing Lists||GNU Mailman|
|Web Design||Adobe® Dreamweaver® CS5|
|Graphics and Photos||Adobe® Photoshop® CS5|
|Video Formatting||Adobe® Flash® CS5|
|Video Editing||Apple Final Cut Studio|
|Slideshows||XML Flash Slideshow v3|
A list of software I use to put together these pages is shown at the right. My Apple MacBook is a constant companion, and all of the photographs and videos are edited on that, along with the text of these pages. I have been running some form of UNIX© on almost every personal computer I've ever owned, but after Oracle killed OpenSolaris, I switched to Fedora.
My server spends most of its time doing nothing, so when it's got some spare time, it participates in the SETI@Home project. SETI@Home ("Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence") is a grid of Internet-connected computers that donates spare compute cycles to look for extraterrestrial life. Every so often, the server downloads some radio telescope data collected from the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico and starts looking for patterns that might indicate the presence of little green men. If you're interested, you can see how much compute time I've contributed to the project over the years or learn more about SETI@Home.
By the way, SETI@Home is just one of the many compute grid projects managed by the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing software. Others projects include work for curing diseases like malaria and HIV, mathematical problems, and climate research. If you see anything that appeals to you, you can donate your own computer's spare cycles for a worthy cause.