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Happy updates to mrBot's doghouse!

August 18, 2023 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

Greetings internet! I thought I would explain about some of the updates I've done to my XMPP chat bot mrBot. It's funny, at one time mrBot was probably more famous than I am in XMPP world. In case you still don't know what XMPP is, that I continuously refer to, allow me to explain shortly:

XMPP (eXtensible messaging and presence protocol) is not a web program, persay, as the "web" runs primarily as websites using HTTP on ports 80,443 in the internet network among the world. So websites are the "web" and this is a chat protocol that is open source, fully open and standardized, and has matured over 22 years since the days of yahoo messenger, icq, aim, aol, etceter, those 90s chat programs you used to have to chat with people from around the world. Well, all of those are dead, except for XMPP and IRC, which in my humble opinion will never die. IRC (internet relay chat) has been around quite a lot longer than XMPP however THE CLOSEST thing to IRC that exists today is XMPP and XMPP is extensible beyond comprehension. It has what are called XEP sub protocols for features used within the XMPP master protocol and can do things that IRC typically can't or won't do, or not typically, like HTTP file uploads, publish subscribe (pubsub) services for infinite blogging, status, real time syndication type of stuff. If you've ever used Discord (gross) then you are aware that you can see your mates' status lines (under their name), whether they're online (green), away (orange), or invisible, etcetera, this is called "presence" and XMPP pioneered it FIRST.

One of the common things about open source stuff, especially as massive as XMPP as a protocol and a realm in which folks have build many many open source projects for use of it, is that rich fucks like Google and Facebook (yes, both have and did) have used the XMPP protocol for their google chat, facebook messenger, and once upon a time not too long ago you could actually connect to their networks using XMPP but not anymore! Embrace, extend, extinguish, was their intentions. Fail. The awesome thing I love about XMPP is that A: you can host your own instance, on your own domain, quite easily with a bit of linux skills, B: the entire scene is federated, just like email. You have what's called a JID (jabber ID, because XMPP was originally called Jabber) which is simply a username@domain and unlike IRC, and some other platforms, that are newer and far inferior, you can TOTALLY expect to get access to the entire federated public realm of chats. However there's a great many security features as well, and instance operators can choose to make their MUCs (multi user chats) private, moderated (require voice to chat), members only, and even enable E2EE (end to end encryption) in group chats. So it's pretty covert if you want it to considering putting your instance on the tor or the i2p network.

Yes XMPP is fully open and public and it's beyond comprehension how extensible it is, and if you get to know the folks on there you can get to know how to make the most of XMPP. A lot of folks become rather interested in computing, linux and self hosting services on linux servers. A perfect place for me.

So I've made a bot, I started building mrBot about 2 years ago with the ErrBot multi protocol chat bot framework but I was dissatisfied with the errors and the bugs. I eventually went with SliXMPP which is a mere library fully suited for XMPP bot building, among other amazing things. This has enabled me to grow my python skills a lot!

So what I am happy about today is that I have polished up some bugs with mrBot. Namely his awesomes function where he can accept a count, positive or negative, for any string almost. I also finished rebuilding some functions that I had him doing when I was using ErrBot like the rolling of dice. When you write "Roll 55" for example he'll output this:

⚂ ⚁ ⚄ ⚂ ⚄ ⚅ ⚁ ⚅ ⚄ ⚁ ⚁ ⚄ ⚁ ⚀ ⚀ ⚅ ⚃ ⚀ ⚀ ⚅ ⚄ ⚀ ⚄ ⚁ ⚃ ⚅ ⚄ ⚂ ⚀ ⚅ ⚄ ⚁ ⚅ ⚀ ⚂ ⚁ ⚂ ⚂ ⚅ ⚁ ⚁ ⚃ ⚅ ⚄ ⚁ ⚄ ⚅ ⚀ ⚄ ⚁ ⚀ ⚁ ⚄ ⚅ ⚃

A totally randomized dice for as many as you specify. I realize it's kinda dumb, but it's entertaining to me, and mrBot's entire purpose is to teach me Python language. Another thing I finished up was his "Food {food}" function where I've written pretty long lists for things you can "feed" mrBot and he'll have a cool answer to depending which category of lists you select what you guess for feeeding him. Yea mrBot is kinda like my pet, in fact he's "my dog" and I do get pissed off when people kick him from the chats LoL...

SO aside from these obviously fully useless non-utility bot functions, tht are merely entertaining at most, I have finally done something, and begun to build actually useful bot functions for mrBot. Namely network utilities. Once in a while, like today for example, we'd be in a chat talking about how another operator has got a configuration issue where his server cannot reach mine, for example. One of the common routines in this is some network command tools like ping, and some dns lookup tools, etc, that can help diagnose the network and come to a solution. Well it's sure handy, if you think about it, to be able to search DNS records, with record types, and also to be able to ping with ipv4 and ipv6 another host, via a bot in that very chat, it makes things transparent and easily accessable. So I've created today a host, a ping and a ping6 tools for mrBot. Tomorrow, if I'm feeling up to it I'd like to make the harder one which is the dig command so that that pretty much covers the basic most common tools for initial network probing.

I think, though honestly more like a really long time ago, this definitely permafries me as a NERD. Ahahaha, which is awesome, cuz I love to do this stuff and it's functional uses are fun for the future too. It's worth it to me to have spent numerous hours today to make this collection of bot upgrades, as I'm also expanding my python skills and learning new concepts and better use of the language and it's syntax ^^

A veteran web developer named Sam from Scotland, who somewhat mentored me a few years back over skype, taught me to have a practical use example for things you study if you're having a hard time understanding them. You honestly can't just brute force learn stuff without such strategies, I'm serious. You'll never get hands on experience. This is how I've enjoyed over past years creating stuff, and then going slightly really astray and building my own custom stuff that impresses, all from learning.

That's enough rambling. I had a certain long time friend in mind who I wanted to read my blog, I'm pretty sure he's not aware of it, he may not even be interested in it, but I had you in mind coatrack buddy for this cuz I think u'd be stoked. pEAcE !

Tags: chatbots, mrBot, bots, slixmpp, python, xmpp, nerd, computing, programming

For those that use autism as a prejudicial slur

July 14, 2023 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

Greetings! It is I, the mystical Woodcutter, who as it has been said he came from the forest.

I am going to attempt to convey a particular perspective I have of myself, so that it might be of some perspective to others as to why I am the way I am plus why you should not insult autistic people by using the nature of their disabilities as a prejudice term. I have seen people say shit like, "i see the room here is autistic", or on Eve Online of all places, "that alliance is spergs", and that means asperger's syndrome people.

Allow me to give you my definition of a person who has traits of the high functioning, autism spectrum, disorder called asperger's syndrome. Their brains and their mental powers have a bias, one weaker sway than is to a much stronger sway. In fact the weaknesses can cancel out the strengths, and vice versa because these types of people are known to have curious areas of inherited extreme intelligence. Meaning that for maybe NASA type shit, they engineered something impossible just because that strength they had was able to see through what an ordinary person could not perceive. The downsides, as far as I know, of people with this illness have a tendency to be unable to relate to emotion well, connect to others socially maybe without purpose, like small talk is meaningless to them, and they fail or have difficulty getting along with the other folks uninhibited by a mental condition. It's pretty clear cut how I see it, considering that in my past I was considered to have this illness but never for sure, that people like this can definitely power excel at things like software, intercommunicable things, abstracts, highly complicated systems like networks or server racks, understanding software stacks and becoming quickly and easily fluent with such things beyond that of a regular person.

I do not think it is because of any passion risen out of lack of satisfactory human interaction, I think it is a literal factor of imbalance but a beautiful thing because these people might be a little weird, a little offputting even (at worst), but they'll generally have you fixed up ASAP.

I've always thought of life this way: people think in images, words, emotions and logic, only one of these. I personally think logically, so I can route a quick way to a solution if abstracts are clear to me but I'll get frustrated without clear abstracts. I am also going to tend to find solutions in, erm, everything. However I am limited by my ability to empathyze, rather, show empathy where that shown empathy gets reciprocated to a healthy human interaction. So though you said your old neighbor, R.I.P. Chase G., you were fucking wild buddy, had he died, I will likely struggle to show you what your emotions beckon from me. This DOES cause problems with me and others because they get wrong impressions ALL THE TIME. It's just not in my mental capacity to act on that tether of humanity, but give me some creative web design project, holy shit, I'll make that shine! Or die tryin! Not because of devotion, or motivation but because of my alley of success.

I've seen people use autism as some prejudice terms in chats a I would like to flame them every time because they don't realize some autistic people can wreck their house up from across the globe if we wanted to. I've found in XMPP numerous people that exhibit this sort of mental paradigm and they are indeed hackers, and possibly very dangerous people if motivated. Speaking of the keyboard and of myself also. Not always the case though. Autistic people can be really good at anything they set their minds to.

I like to combine segments of software, in use and in idea, figuratively and factually, to enjoy my time most of all creatively. I define creative as "as to create" ... create anything. If computing is about solving problems, purely plain and simple you might have noticed, I break that boundary, with creativitiy. Yet I still happy to write a python script that solves a problem, then back it up to my /home/$USER/bin directory export PATH=$PATH:/home/chunk/bin and execute it again and again by it's name. I thrive on complexity.

Tags: psychology, skillset, ideas, autism, computing, gifts

Chillin' Codin'

October 03, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

chillin codin

Tags: computing, programming, photo, art

My friend has gotten a PinePhone!

September 26, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

My friend on XMPP chats, shokara, has gotten a PinePhone recently and I had one question in particular for him, knowing the PinePhone is a FOSS hardware and runs Linux, was if it can run Gajim. Gajim being my favorite desktop XMPP client :)

This is what he returned as an image and it's amazing! Because it literally is just like the desktop client! For sure PinePhone can run normal Linux software!

Gajim Pinephone

Tags: computing, linux, pinephone, xmpp

A quick note about a bash blog extension idea

September 16, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

Hello again ! Here's another quick post for today about a sweet idea I've been curing in my brain about how to extend bash blog. Bash blog is what this blog is made with. It's a single, yes one, bash script on command line that manages and assembles this entire blog :)

I thought, and though this isn't keeping with the theme of bash blog, about a PHP extension that where a link posted can take you to a web form that you can subscribe to this blog and a mail server running on the host will send a preprogrammed mail to each email in the list. When a new post happens, and/or if any mailing list type like thing, such as an announcement or off the site news, happens. It shouldn't be honestly very very difficult. It would be comprised of a configuration file for environment variables such as mail host, to and from addresses, subjects and layout email templates. Also signatures. All the stuff one would expect in a mail out type of function :)

For a little while I hosted an old school telnet BBS system on battlecruiser.co but it wasn't long before it was getting attacked and it didn't really appeal to me. The BBS reminds me of the simple mail server that I also have, and a good amount of like minded people I've met on XMPP/IRC have also. It would work on a very simple postfix smtp send only setup and it's possible it might not require an actual mail system at all!

I can't be too sure when or even if this will happen but I like the idea and if you want to try to do this up then I should have a contact page eventually and I'd be willing to help :)

Tags: git, repository, bashblog, hostnamectl, modules, customization, computing, PHP, email

I got a BulletPlus-NA2! - LTE Modem Router

January 27, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

Ordered one of these off of ebay for a good price considering what they're worth:

bulletplusx na2 pic 1
bulletplus na2 pic 2
bulletplus na2 pic 3

Here's a >spec sheet< on >this unit<
I am thrilled to have this with me now such a cool littel electronic thing. It does soooo much too! Since I"m currently living in a remote place with very very shitty wifi and basically useless wifi at that, this thing makes life a tiny bit easier :D And is neato :3

Tags: computing, stuff, networking, IoT

Home away from home in my Debian 10 VM

January 27, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷


Tags: computing, desktop, screenshot

A mission in life?

January 11, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

It's one mission in my life to help out in the open source community. For starters on this mission I helped g1n with his GRU homepage for his Unix project. You can check it out >here< as it is also made with a bashblog. His devlogs are of the >bashblog< use and that's where I learned bashblog here as this blog, is from designing that site from the old text only it was. This was my honest open source contribution for the new years so far! I was very happy with it now I'm very happy with this one too :D

So the mission is to find people to collaborate with. I know PHP, BASH, HTML/CSS, enough about MySQL to implement it, LAMP servers and various other things like networking and system administration. Hoping one day soon this year 2022 I can work together with others :)

Tags: goals, opensource, computing

My favorite device right now

January 10, 2022 — t̷h̷e̷8̷w̷o̷o̷d̷c̷u̷t̷t̷e̷r̷

Lenovo Small Form Factor Mini-ATX PC:

Tags: computing, stuff