Summer reading list

I just ordered several books from Amazon for work-related reading over the summer. All of these are highly recommended so hopefully they won’t be too boring.

  • Designing Interfaces: Patterns for Effective Interaction Design – Jenifer Tidwell
  • Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations – Clay Shirky
  • Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery (Voices That Matter) – Garr Reynolds
  • Once You’re Lucky, Twice You’re Good: The Rebirth of Silicon Valley and the Rise of Web 2.0 – Sarah Lacy
  • Smart and Gets Things Done: Joel Spolsky’s Concise Guide to Finding the Best Technical Talent – Joel Spolsky

net-snmp snmpd failure in CentOS 5

I was recently testing Zenoss on a CentOS 5 system when I discovered that the snmpd component of net-snmp would not start. There were no error messages in /var/log/snmpd.log so this made diagnosis a bit tricky given I had never used the tool before. 🙂

Running the daemon manually with snmpd -f showed the following error:

snmpd: symbol lookup error: snmpd: undefined symbol: smux_snmp_select_list_get_length

A quick Google search found the following bug based upon that error:

This bug indicates that the net-snmp-libs package was not being updated when the net-snmp package was updated using CentOS’s built-in update manager. A quick check validated this:

[root@cgibbons-dev CentOS]# rpm --query net-snmp
[root@cgibbons-dev CentOS]# rpm --query net-snmp-libs

And then a quick update of the net-snmp-libs package solved the issue:

[root@cgibbons-dev ~]# yum update net-snmp-libs
Loading "installonlyn" plugin
Setting up Update Process
Setting up repositories
base                      100% |=========================| 1.1 kB    00:00     
updates                   100% |=========================|  951 B    00:00     
addons                    100% |=========================|  951 B    00:00     
extras                    100% |=========================| 1.1 kB    00:00     
Reading repository metadata in from local files
Resolving Dependencies
--> Populating transaction set with selected packages. Please wait.
---> Downloading header for net-snmp-libs to pack into transaction set.
net-snmp-libs-5.3.1-19.el 100% |=========================|  27 kB    00:00     
---> Package net-snmp-libs.i386 1:5.3.1-19.el5_1.4 set to be updated
--> Running transaction check

Dependencies Resolved

 Package                 Arch       Version          Repository        Size 
 net-snmp-libs           i386       1:5.3.1-19.el5_1.4  updates           1.2 M

Transaction Summary
Install      0 Package(s)         
Update       1 Package(s)         
Remove       0 Package(s)         

Total download size: 1.2 M
Is this ok [y/N]: Y
Downloading Packages:
(1/1): net-snmp-libs-5.3. 100% |=========================| 1.2 MB    00:00     
Running Transaction Test
Finished Transaction Test
Transaction Test Succeeded
Running Transaction
  Updating  : net-snmp-libs                ######################### [1/2] 
  Cleanup   : net-snmp-libs                ######################### [2/2]

Updated: net-snmp-libs.i386 1:5.3.1-19.el5_1.4

Someone finally did it…

I’ve been a GPS user since the system was first available and one thing I have always wanted was the ability for navigation software to take additional factors into account when planning a route. Most systems just offer you the ability to build routes based upon road speeds, road types (highways, toll-roads, off-road, etc.), and a choice of speed or distance goals. That’s OK, but any seasoned travel knows there’s more to it than that.

What about avoiding known traffic bottlenecks? Some navigation systems started adding that a few years ago. But one that I’ve been waiting for forever is the ability for a navigation system to route you around bad sections of town. If you are from out of town, you likely have no idea what sections of town to avoid. All the data a navigation system needs for that are already out there – crime rates by ZIP code, for example.

Honda now has a navigation system that does exactly this. Unfortunately, it is available only in Japan at the moment.

I’m sure in the overly PC society that the Western world has become it will never find its way here, which is a damn shame.

My Zenoss Home Office

My work environment at Zenoss involves working out of my home part of the time, and then spending a week or so a month at our Austin office.

I had originally planned on using my Mac Pro and large monitor as my workstation and then just using the Mac OS X built-in Screen Saver tool to connect to my laptop as needed. After a few days I realized this wasn’t going to work that well, so I set about getting an actual workspace just for Zenoss activities.My Zenoss Workspace

Luckily I had an extra small computer cart from Anthro that I could use. I wound up using a spare Dell monitor and some newly purchased wireless input devices and then I was in business.


So far, this is working out well. It is making it easier to not be distracted by non-work computer stuff as well, since I don’t have everything personal on my work laptop.