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Red Sparrow (2018)
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Being The Geekly Diary of Waider
(may contain traces of drinking, movies, and sport)
November 26
Red Sparrow was pretty much perfect. Knew nothing about it going in, was completely hooked throughout. An excellent spy thriller from start to finish; a little bit squeamish in spots, a little bit gratuitous in spots, but great story.

November 13
Migration process under way. It's a bit slow as I'm trying to move things around on USB-connected drives to make them palatable to non-USB-connected drives, e.g. "native" Time Machine backups. Apple helpfully suggests using the Finder to drag and drop things, but when the files are > 1TB that means it can spend literally hours days "Preparing to copy..."

November 09
Synology DS420+ in da house! Now to see about migrating stuff to it...

November 08
Wrapped up Season 2 of Elementary, wherein the Fellowship is Broken, or something. Weird to be going through these cram-it-all-into-45-minutes episodes only to get a three-parter for the finale. Anyway, roll on season 3.

November 07
New season of Doctor Who! Yay!

November 03
The rabbit holes... must check on that thing on the Mac Mini... hmm, it all seems a bit sluggish, I wonder what's wrong?... wait, it's writing to swap? Huh. Lemme fire up the activity monitor... OK, so servermgrd is consuming 5GB, and that's making eventsd thrash, so eventsd is now up to 2GB and this is probably a self-feeding cycle, so I'll kill off the Server Manager front-end and see how it goes... OK, swap usage has halved, but it's still cranking the disk a lot... Ah. Spotlight is indexing the slow disk, so that's gonna account for a whole lot of reading, writing, and thrashing. Best leave it get on with its work.

November 02
One of my z-wave TRVs has flaked out a couple of times in a sufficiently unique way that I can't find any useful online advice: it stops reporting temperatures or accepting commands, but I think it's still responding to low-level probing because as far as I can tell the controller is able to ping it and get a response and basic capability information. Touching the "wake up" button results in it rapidly flashing its backlight, and both the "network" and "alarm" icons blink constantly. It still seems to manage temperature regulation, you just can't find out what temperature it's measuring or make it hotter or cooler. Compounding this is that it's a battery-driven device, and my various readings on z-wave have led me to conclude that it will never be marked as dead - it's been sitting here on the sofa with the battery removed for more than a day and the controller insists it's alive despite not having heard from it in all that time. This makes it impossible to mark as failed, because the controller insists it's not dead, just resting, and if you can't mark it as failed, it's sort of hard to remove it from the controller. Now, the other thing I've done in the past is to factory-reset it, which means - as far as I can tell - wiping the network association including the controller-assigned ID, so when it rejoins the network it gets allocated a new ID. And then I have to go and manually update a bunch of things so that the new ID is recognised as the appropriate device etc. etc. etc. I've not yet given up hope that the controller will eventually mark it as Actually Dead, at least not until I can find definitive confirmation of my half-recalled knowledge of how it's supposed to work. One thing I will observe: it's the first TRV I bought, and it's a different brand to all the rest albeit with what should be the same internals, and the same physical appearance. So it's plausible there's some sort of glitchy firmware at play here and that's why it's only this TRV and not any of the others.

October 31
I hooked up a little free ("free", meaning I'm the product) monitor to poke at the public-facing side of my internet connection and record latency and outages and the like, and one interesting thing is that packet loss increases, in some cases to 100%, when we're watching episodes of Elementary on Prime Video. However, last night's entertainment, coming to us from iTunes Apple Movies Apple TV did push the latency noticably higher, but didn't result in packet loss. Make of that what you will.

October 30
Finally caved and ordered myself an empty Synology 420+ chassis to replace the aging Drobo: I'm sure I've an entertaining month of data shuffling ahead of me but at the end of it I'll not be depending on an increasingly haggard Mac Mini and its creaking USB3 connection.

Rewatched American Hustle. I'd actually forgotten most of the details and had invented a shooting that didn't occur. It's a great movie, though, even without the gunplay I was expecting...

October 23
The humour in Riddle of the Sands was largely subtle and understated, unlike that in The Lady Vanishes. Having seen Hitchcock's version, I imagine I was a little spoiled for this, but it's the same sort of overblown "humour" that made me turn off The Producers about five minutes in - basically, people very quickly getting hysterical and literally babbling over each other's speech. This is, as I understand it, stock-in-trade for "screwball comedy" of this era. It's painful. Angela Lansbury's hinting-into-cockney accent was about the most subtle thing in the entire movie. And in case you missed the fact that Cybill Shepherd was somewhat underdressed (for the entire movie), they even gave Elliot Gould a line to point it out.



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