This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.



July 2006

Scruffy Sam


This is the longest I’ve let it go in many many years. And not cause I’ve been trying, just cause I’ve been crazy lazy. It itches. And with it I am looking a bit too much like my dad. So it will probably go away quite soon.

But I will take votes in the comments here.

Should I shave before going to work on Wednesday? Or should I let it go longer?

All votes left as comments here up until I stop into the shower Wednesday will be accepted.

Wiped Address Book

So I was chugging along doing things when all of a sudden i noticed iChat was showing screen names instead of people’s real names. I’m like WTF and go to find the setting that controls that. I can’t find it right away, so I hit the info thing on one of the people who was online. And their info card comes up blank instead of their screen name. They had somehow gotten disassociated with the Address Book. So I open Address Book. And it is COMPLETELY EMPTY. Thousands of address cards I had for pretty much anybody I’ve had any contact with since 1996, gone.

I close iChat and Address Book and open them back up. iChat makes me tell it who I am all over again. Address book is still blank. (I have later determined that I should NOT have tried restarting either of these and it caused more damage.)

Long story short, I freaked out and panicked for 10-15 minutes, then found a backup from February 13th. (It looks like it was made around the time I switched to Cronus.) If I hadn’t restarted Address Book, I am fairly convinced there would have been a backup file available from the last time I changed an address, which was actually only hours earlier. Cause there was a “Previous” data file that apparently gets refreshed every time you make a change of any sort. (And when I told iChat who I was again it made me a new entry in the new blank address book and so made a new previous, wiping out the previous previous, which probably had my whole address book.)

Anyway, I took the February 13th address book, then went through my mail archive from February to the present and with a few select all actions added back in every new person (or random email address) who had sent me anything in those months. That’ll get me names and email addresses. Unfortunately anything I put in with phone numbers or physical addresses or notes about which email addresses were work, home, etc would not be recreated that way, and I know I have done at least some of that. But I think I will be close.

I have no clue. Not the slightest notion, why the Address book suddenly decided to empty itself.

And it scares the hell out of me. I have not been doing automated nightly backups since I got Cronus, because Cronus is now bigger than the external drive I had used for that purchase. To start that again I need an External 500 Gb drive (or larger) and that just hasn’t been in the budget these past few months. I have essentially been crossing my fingers and trusting that nothing will go wrong with a computer that is only a few months old.

But this goes to show you really do never know when something bad might happen. If not a hard drive failure, then even some obscure human error. (Maybe I accidentally did a select all delete on my address book? Don’t think so, but that kind of thing DOES happen…) Or some bizarre software glitch. Or whatever.

As this is I am very very freaked out. I was able to restore most of the data, but there is a definite gap. Things that were lost and I can not recreate. But nothing I feel too super critical about.

But had this been my email archive or my Quicken records (all my financial data since July 1995) or my archive of photographs, or a few other things, then I would have been completely non-functional. To say I would be bawling and in tears would be an understatement. It would make my reaction during the great email meltdown of 2004 seem like nothing at all had happened.

I need to get regular daily backups going on this machine again very very fast. Like within the next few days. I am running without a net right now, and that just is not cool. We may be low on cash right now, but I need to figure out how to do this ASAP.

Mary Evelyn VanTilburgh

imageThis is my mother’s father’s mother. The picture is from the 5th VanTilburgh family reunion. They’ve happened every year since 1909. It is for all the descendants of Mary’s parents. Which would of course include me. I vaguely remember going once the year I lived with my mom in Indiana. Maybe I’ll go again some day.

Back to Mary though. She apparently always went to those reunions. My mom’s father was the first of her three sons. She traveled with her husband David Clement Brandon from Ohio to Arkansas and back to Ohio.

For more, what little I have, click the picture.