I bought "A brief history of the human race", from Michael Cook, a week ago in the compass bookstore at the SFO airport. Quite good, especially the early and late parts (I'm 2/3 into it). I was particularly impressed by the treatment of "could history have turned out differently?". The author actually gives a convincing answer to it: No. This answer is supported by evidence; nature has concocted several experiments for us: notably, it separated several groups of humans before the start of history (the author defines history at the appearance of farming, so about 10000 years ago), and kept them isolated since then, up to the 15 century (for the America) or the 19th century (for Australia). Beside a different calendar (farming did not appear in the America before the fourth Millenium BC, and did not appear at all in Australia), which can readily be explained by the different geography/faune of the said continent, how things unfolded in America is not fundamentally different of how they happened in the rest of the world, with civilizations based on similar principles, writing, farming, markets, rulers, etc. Interesting question and answer. The book is full of similar smart insight, although sometimes it lacks of a conducting wire/idea.
Around the end of January, that is, about a month ago, I decided to re-install Tiger on my -relatively new- laptop. It took my an evening to backup everything (even more thoroughly that my daily backups), including /usr/local and other niceties (/Library/WebServer and /sw). I re-install, and my main goal was successful: spotlight was operational again. I then one by one re-instated capabilities, and everything went fine (note that amd did not break spotlight, so was not the culprit). I have not yet re-installed Salling Clicker (although I have the dmg on my desktop). One thing that did not get along fine is Movable Type. I spent countless hours to try to make it work; re-installed MT3.2, mysql (several versions), DBI and DBD::mysql perl modules. I eventually cornered the problem to the DBI perl module. First, those were the ones that made my backed up MT failed at the re-install: the perl installer put things in odd places, like /System/Library/Perl or /Library/Perl, that I did not back up of course. So I had to re-install DBI and DBD::mysql, and that was what created the issue. Somehow, the DBI I installed from the web had some incompatibility with the mysql I use (I tried both 4.0 -from fink- and 5.0 -from mysql.com-) and was creating problem in decoding crypted passwords. The net result is that I could not log in the MT admin page, which is of course very annoying. As I say, this is fixed now, and my blog is operational again! This episode has made me realized how I had became dependent of this tool.Btw, here is how I fixed it:
Of course, you have to be careful each time to make sure there is a user/password and a empty database for your blog. These have to be entered in mt-config.cgi.
I'm really glad to have solved this problem. I lost so many hours on it, trying to debug the perl code (which turn out mood when I realized the thing was working with the Berkely DB, hence the issue was not in the MT perl code but in the MT/mysql interaction).
Btw, you might noticed that there are blog entries within the dates MT was off. It's because I continued blogging with ecto, caching but not publishing the entries. I published them yesterday once MT was fixed.