News archive February 2012 - Koos van den Hout

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2012-02-29 (#) 8 years ago
Remarkable news item: Israel raids Palestinian television stations - Media Network Radio Netherlands Worldwide. What I miss (and what I commented there) is any real reporting on the frequency of Watan TV and how it would interfere with air traffic control. None of the news articles I could find answered this question.

Some more searching found me Who's telling the truth about Ramallah TV station raid? - Elder of Ziyon where the same question is asked, with some more details on frequency use in the Middle East. I wasn't aware VHF band I (41.25 - 87.75 MHz) is still in use for TV in the Middle East. With these numbers it could be an option that harmonics or mixing products from the transmitter signal were causing interference but I'd still need to know the frequency of the station and the ATC frequencies to determine whether this was actually happening.

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2012-02-29 (#) 8 years ago
RT @fanf: http://t.co/BoVjht5q - No right to parody in the UK / the video Olympics Authorities want banned.
2012-02-28 (#) 8 years ago
2000 #schoonmakers in het pand en nog ligt het vuilnis tot 1.5 meter hoog #uithof
2012-02-27 (#) 8 years ago
Het is niet eens meer echt verbazend: "Politie schendt wet met bevragingen CIOT-database" - webwereld.nl. Het blijkt nogsteeds de gewoonte om alle informatie die misschien bruikbaar is in een onderzoek op te vragen in plaats van alleen informatie over concrete verdenkingen:
Woordvoerder Florian Vingerhoeds [ van het regiokorps Gelderland-Zuid ] verklaart het hoge aantal antwoorden door het bevragen van meerdere personen in één enkele bevraging. "Wanneer iemand vaak belt met bepaalde telefoonnummers, kunnen we van die personen ook gelijk de naw-gegevens opvragen". Datzelfde geldt volgens hem voor de ip-adressen waarmee iemand vaak communiceert.
Het beste commentaar van Commentaar op "Politie schendt wet met bevragingen CIOT-database" - webwereld.nl:
Al die data opslaan gaat niet aan. We verzinnen een manier waarop de politiediensten die data uniform kunnen opvragen via aanvragen die centraal worden bijgehouden maar waarvoor de antwoorden direct van de aanbieders komen. Die aanvragen moeten digitaal ondertekend worden door een rechter en de telecomaanbieder mag er niet aan voldoen als het signatuur niet klopt. En iedereen mag opvragen of zijn telefoonnummer danwel ip adres in een aanvraag danwel antwoord opgedoken is.

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2012-02-26 (#) 8 years ago
Bij het graven in de archieven heb ik ook oude floppybakken doorgewerkt. De meeste floppies waren tot mijn verbazing nog prima leesbaar. Zelfs de floppies die ik als goeie 720k floppies kocht, van een extra gat voorzag en dan formatteerde op 1.44 Mb waren nog leesbaar. Om er iets mee te doen maak ik er eerst imagefiles van met dd_rescue. De enige floppies die echt absoluut onleesbaar waren zijn floppies die ik in 1989 gebruikte bij het practicum op OS-9 systemen tijdens mijn opleiding. Of dat aan het gebruikte formaat, aan de floppydrives op de unicorn systemen of aan de 23 jaar ertussen ligt weet ik niet.

Een paar van de floppies die ik tegenkwam bevatten materiaal van het FreeLinK netwerk voor koppelen onafhankelijke fidonet technologie netwerken, wat ik dus weer beschikbaar stel.

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2012-02-23 (#) 8 years ago
Good news: the lawsuit about the timezone database has been dropped.

The EFF helped defend against the Astrolabe lawsuit against Olson and Eggert. It's still not the ideal way to move the control of the database from Olson and Eggert to the Iana, and reading the facts about the timezone database lawsuit shows just how bad things were, from 12 January 2012:
And then we waited for Astrolabe to actually serve Olson and Eggert, which would allow litigation to commence in earnest. Perhaps realizing the absurdity of its legal position, however, Astrolabe didn’t bother to take that next step, leaving Olson and Eggert in legal limbo.

Today, we’re taking the battle to Astrolabe, and starting the process for seeking sanctions under Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Rule 11 requires litigants to conduct a reasonable inquiry into the facts and law before filing any paper with the court.
I hope this causes a bit more trouble for Astrolabe than just having to say "Sorry, we should not have done this".

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2012-02-23 (#) 8 years ago
RT @internetthought: Rick Santorum’s euthanasia fantasy http://t.co/YWo9tHpB He claimed elderly in NL were involuntarily euthanized, 10 ...
2012-02-22 (#) 8 years ago
And yet another Fidonet Technology Network from the archives of BBS Koos z'n Doos. I dug up the old forms and a nodelist of TRI-NET MMnet and EroticaNet. A very international network, with French and English echomail areas (showing the roots in Canada).

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2012-02-22 (#) 8 years ago
Bij het bladeren in de backup van BBS Koos z'n Doos kwam ik informatie tegen over TradeNet, een fidonet technology network met advertenties gericht op Nederland. De voorloper van marktplaats!

Fidonet technology network, afgekort tot FTN, was een titel die gebruikt werd voor BBS netwerken die wel met de fidonet software en nodelijsten werkten maar niet gekoppeld waren aan fidonet zelf. Addressering in deze netwerken was dus altijd wel van het zone:net/node type, maar met hele andere zonenummers dan Fidonet. BBS Koos z'n Doos zat bijvoorbeeld op een heel aantal van deze Fidonet Technology Networks: HIN (Hogeschool Informatie Netwerk) met adres 87:100/20, FreeLinK (netwerk om tussen Fidonet Technology Networks echomail uit te wisselen) 19:19/97, HyperNet 111:7/0, TRI-NET / MMnet family network / EroticaNet 92:1400/0, TradeNet 63:102/100, Universal 77:8405/110.

Maar dus niet als node op Fidonet zelf. Dat kostte maandelijks geld omdat degenen die het ophaalden en distribueerden een vergoeding wilden voor de kosten. Wat als 'arme student' een slecht idee was naast de kosten voor de telefoonrekening en de hardware. Het andere BBS waar ik eerst CoSysop en later Sysop van was, Fido HCC IBM PCgg had natuurlijk wel Fidonet, maar dat werd geregeld door de HCC.

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2012-02-20 (#) 8 years ago
Interesting reading this weekend: Must-Complete Projects for Every Hardcore Tech Geek - Wired Gadget Lab. My version of this list:
  • [✓] Build a PC From Scratch .. I'm not sure I ever bought a completely installed PC.
  • [?] Overclock a PC or Mac .. I never tried anything with unsupported clock speeds, but I once replaced an Intel 8088 processor with a NEC V20 processor to get a Norton Sysindex rating of 1.6 (if I recall correctly).
  • [ ] Build a Robot or Drone Flying Machine. I have done other hardware projects, but nothing remote controlled / autonomous yet.
  • [ ] Hack Your Body With a Geek Tattoo. Not going to happen.
  • [✓] Live on Linux For at Least a Month. Euh, there are other options?
  • [✓] Perform Invasive Surgery on a Mobile Device. I've opened and repaired multiple mobile phones.
  • [✓] Create a Man Cave. It's more a (very messy) home office / computer room than a real 'man cave' and I may have to give it up when our son needs more than a baby room.
  • [✓] Carry Around Essential PC Apps on a USB Stick. I think it counts that I carried around a small box of 3.5" floppies ages ago. I guess "having ssh access to a known system" was enough.
  • [ ] Brew Your Own Beer or Distill Your Own Moonshine. Haven't done that.

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2012-02-19 (#) 8 years ago
Wie controleert de controleurs? http://t.co/cGblqXjE
2012-02-18 (#) 8 years ago
Reading the news about MTVNL testing on Radio en TV zenders in Nederland I did a DAB scan this evening. Interesting results: MTVNL on 11A from Hilversum is either still down or reception was too bad (it was raining). MTVNL testing on 12B showed an interesting ensemble with 6 classic DAB (MP2) services and 2 other services (according to the Noxon mediaplayer). Tags are 3G SERVICE1 3G .. 3G SERVICE6 3G for the audio services and 3G SERVICE7 3G and 3G SERVICE8 3G for the data services. Different levels of bitrate and protection for the audio services. I guess they are testing stuff. What was interesting was that the reception quality was constantly shifting between bad, intermediate and good.

Update 2012-02-19: redid the scan when it was clear weather, now MTVNL from Hilversum on 11A showed up, so it was back up again. I also let the Pure One Mini do a scan and it found the silent test services. On the reception indicator of the Pure One Mini the change in signal strength wasn't as big as on the Noxon mediaplayer. Interesting is that the Pure One Mini shows the services as  3G SERVICE1 3G and up, with a space in the first position of the name.

Update 2012-02-20: The service name 3G SERVICE1 and up have been used before: according to the archives for 2000 of DAB ensembles worldwide the service name was used in the test phase of the South Yorkshire local ensemble.

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2012-02-14 (#) 8 years ago
RT @BOFHTopTips: Nagios is red / Devops are blue / Who broke my network? / I hate you
2012-02-13 (#) 8 years ago
Interesting 'documentation bug' for redhat and derived linux distributions: several sites mention how you can setup alias configurations in /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0:0 and beyond, but most configuration samples assume they need the statement
ONBOOT=yes
or ONBOOT=no. The original redhat documentation for alias and clone network adapter configuration misses the part on how to disable or enable them. We disabled a set of aliases and found out after a reboot that they were enabled again. Digging deeper in the script which reads them /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifup-aliases found the right statement to disable them:
ONPARENT=no
Yes, the default is to enable them when the parent comes up.

Wrong configuration samples found at:

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2012-02-11 (#) 8 years ago
Maybe a future project given a bit of money and a lot of spare time: receiving D-STAR gmsk signals with a Funcube dongle pro or other (software) radio and decoding them in software to show the active callsign and routing information. The audio will not be available as D-STAR uses the AMBE codec. But the on-air metadata will be quite interesting to decode and process. Maybe also available by linking to a repeater or reflector via the IP protocols and receiving the metadata.

After all other projects, and needs a lot of round tuits.

Update 2012-02-13: sometimes these thoughts nag and nag, and you do a few google searches, find some software which may do the bit about linking to a reflector and receiving metadata, and some hacking in the source later:
DSTAR: STARTED my=PA4YBR P,sfx=FRED,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=REF017 A,rpt2=PI1BSM A,streamid=96,36
No audio, but the metadata is there. I took the dplus_client_linux from D-star open source / Dextra and modified the source a bit: it doesn't try to talk to the AMBE decoder anymore and it doesn't try to log in to the reflector anymore. But reporting as an active connection without logging in is enough to receive the data. I configured it to connect to REF017A, the Dutch d-star reflector 017 Alfa which is home to Dutch D-star users. I now get interesting output:
DSTAR: STARTED my=PD2AWD  ,sfx=E880,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=REF017 A,rpt2=PI1DRA B,streamid=84,245

Started receiving audio from dstar

Skipping concurrent: my=PE1GDF  ,sfx=2820,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=PI1POH B,rpt2=REF017 B,streamid=21,138

DSTAR: stream complete
DSTAR: STARTED my=PD3JHN  ,sfx=PORT,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=PI1UTR G,rpt2=REF017 A,streamid=15,127

Started receiving audio from dstar

Skipping concurrent: my=PE1GDF  ,sfx=2820,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=PI1POH B,rpt2=REF017 B,streamid=142,95

Skipping concurrent: my=PE1GDF  ,sfx=2820,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=PI1POH B,rpt2=REF017 B,streamid=67,222

DSTAR: stream complete

Update 2012-02-14: Added timestamps to the output so I can get an idea of the activity:
DSTAR: STARTED my=PA0LVL  ,sfx=E80D,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=REF017 A,rpt2=PA0LVL C,streamid=139,189
2012-02-14 19:47:19 Started receiving audio from dstar

2012-02-14 19:47:23 stream complete
DSTAR: STARTED my=PA1MBW  ,sfx=PIET,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=PI1UTR G,rpt2=REF017 A,streamid=71,23
2012-02-14 19:47:28 Started receiving audio from dstar

2012-02-14 19:47:29 stream complete
DSTAR: STARTED my=PA1NJK  ,sfx=IC92,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=PI1HGL G,rpt2=REF017 A,streamid=66,74
2012-02-14 19:47:41 Started receiving audio from dstar

2012-02-14 19:47:47 stream complete
DSTAR: STARTED my=PE1KZU  ,sfx=E92D,ur=CQCQCQ  ,rpt1=REF017 A,rpt2=PE1KZU C,streamid=47,202
2012-02-14 19:48:39 Started receiving audio from dstar

2012-02-14 19:48:41 stream complete
Quite busy. I was hoping to have audio via one of the audio streams from reflector 017 Alfa so I could match those with the status messages but none is available at this moment.

I also found where the user messages and other text streams in the d-star protocol go:
PE1KZU BERT JO22XT
VIA  DVAP
which match messages in Reflector 017 dplus dashboard. Well: they don't show what the originating callsign is.

Update 2012-02-15: The REF017A live audio feed is back on-line, so I can view the control traffic and listen to the audio at the same time. Well, not exactly at the same time: there is a delay.

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2012-02-11 (#) 8 years ago
Over het water gelopen zonder dat het een religieuze ervaring was #vasteaggregatietoestand
2012-02-11 Having internal provider-independent addresses with IPv6: unique site-local addresses 8 years ago
Yesterday somebody asked me about provider-independent addresses in IPv6, because of the old 'renumbering sucks' reason. At that moment I did remember that there is a sort-of provider-independent option, but it is relatively new and IPv6 purists frown upon it, so you probably will not get a provider-independent allocation just because you don't like renumbering. This does show the 'roots' of IPv6 being in the time when classless inter-domain routing and aggregation were seen as the best solution for routing table growth. But in the end: renumbering is not so nice, and can cause interruptions in internal reachability. With full NAT and just one external address renumber operations never affect internal services.

But, later I remembered there is a solution in IPv6 for this, because it is possible to configure multiple addresses on any interface in IPv6, and outgoing traffic will prefer to reach a service on the same class of address, with a preference set for each 'type' of address, as listed in /etc/gai.conf in Linux. And there are equivalent tables in other operating systems.
Read the rest of Having internal provider-independent addresses with IPv6: unique site-local addresses

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2012-02-08 (#) 8 years ago
Soms zoek ik in een nostalgisch moment op google images op termen als computerkamer en ik kwam daar tegen wat ik bedoelde: foto's van een echte computerkamer zoals je bij jezelf of bij vriendjes met een home-computer had in de jaren 90. Mooie voorbeelden: Fotoalbum 1994-1996 Martin Meijerink en Fotoalbum 1993 Martin Meijerink met mooie foto's van een echte computerkamer uit 1993 met een Amiga 500 en andere computers, onder een schuin dak, met de rommel zoals je die in een computerkamer zou verwachten. Er zijn veel meer computerkamer foto's te vinden, maar de foto's van Martin Meijerink geven wel het beeld wat ik bedoelde, en wat ik herken van mezelf en vrienden in die jaren. Misschien moet ik nog eens mijn 'analoge' foto collectie doorzoeken op foto's die leuk zijn om in te scannen.

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2012-02-08 (#) 8 years ago
Awesome snowboarding footage: Supernatural Snowboarders Showcase Super Skills - Wired playbook.

And this time with real and huge amounts of snow. Some "snowboarding movies" annoy me because there are just some small heaps of snow in the picture for the correct jump spot and the correct landing spot. This is however all on a real mountain with loads of fresh powder snow.

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2012-02-08 (A nice satellite picture of the current snow-cover in my own country, the Netherlands. This kind of ...) 8 years ago
Google+Koos van den Hout : A nice satellite picture of the current snow-cover in my own country, the Netherlands. This kind of pictures always makes "the entire country is covered" a lot more visible.
2012-02-08 (#) 8 years ago
#snowcover in the Netherlands: http://t.co/DCyE5c9P (awesome images from NASA!)
2012-02-08 (#) 8 years ago
Aqua/Modis satellite image 20120206 1105 UTC
The Netherlands, Snow-cover 20120206 1105 UTC
Image credit: NASA/GSFC, MODIS Rapid Response
Snow is always nice on satellite images, so I had a look in the NASA rapid response system for recent images of our snow-covered country. This one is a winner! Click for high resolution.

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2012-02-07 (#) 8 years ago
Awesome time-lapse videos of Northern Lights: Aurora 2012 by Christian Mülhauser. Select HD, watch full screen. Enjoy.

Via: Holy Aurora - Bad Astronomy.

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2012-02-07 (#) 8 years ago
Het Weerstation Utrecht Overvecht heeft nu ook Nederlands geleerd. Voorlopig voor de waarnemingen en de webpagina, misschien in een later stadium ook voor de teksten rond de gegenereerde grafieken.

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2012-02-07 (#) 8 years ago
Low temperatures in the Netherlands: the Weather station Utrecht Overvecht is measuring temperatures below zero at the moment. Which all goes fine, the software deals with it nicely.

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2012-02-07 (#) 8 years ago
Een eendagsschaatsbaan in de Uithof: http://t.co/SdepEoyg
2012-02-07 (#) 8 years ago
Fun with someone trying to route sip calls through an asterisk server during my vacation: she or he tried 86 times to reach the same London number, 36 times matched patterns which triggered my scripts to play random your call could not be completed messages, which probably explains why the person kept trying. Maybe I can add some of the new patterns.

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2012-02-06 (#) 8 years ago
Back from a snowboarding holiday in Fiss, in the Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis ski area in Austria. Great white stuff there, a few days were very cold (-19 ⁰C outside and 40 km/h north wind..) but keeping moving on the board helped. I enjoyed it a lot! The cold weather was going on in Austria too: on the morning we left the car thermometer showed -21 ⁰C.

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2012-02-06 (#) 8 years ago
Further changes in the growing DAB coverage in Germany:

New transmitters active for the DR Deutschland MUX on 5C listed on 30 January: Baden Baden, Eifel, Heilbronn, Langenbrand, Rimberg, Ulm.

Changes from 5A to 5C listed on 6 February: Bonn Venusberg, Dortmund, Duesseldorf, Frankfurt Main, Grosser Feldberg Taunus, Heidelberg Koenigstuhl, Koeln Colonius, Langenberg, Mainz Kastel, Saarbruecken Schoksberg, Stuttgart Frauenkopf.

Changes found via checking: Bundesnetzagentur Senderdaten Rundfunk where open and documented data formats make it easy for me to regularly get the latest lists of T-DAB and DVB-T transmitters and check for changes.

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