Scientists create glow-in-the-dark bunnies.

So, yeah.  They’re adorable as hell, to be sure.

I have two things to say:

  1. (Lame and Punny) I, for one, welcome our new glow-in-the-dark, hopping, loves-to-eat-carrots (not yet quite zombied) bunny overlords.
  2. (Serious) At what point does genetic modification yield a new organism altogether?  Are these really bunnies?  They’re injected with jellyfish DNA.  Is it a bunny/jellyfish hybrid?

To quote Jurassic Park’s Ian Malcolm (<3 Jeff Goldblum) “Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should.”

I am a scientist at heart, but we must closely examine the possible repercussions of futzing around with the very essence of an organism.  To not do so is borderline insane and -definitely- dangerous.

Food for thought.

Rutgers Gardens.  A place of plants, farmers markets, and life in general.

When I was attending college at Rutgers University, the common joke from out-of-state students was that NJ was the armpit of the United States.  Some people (especially those from NY) considered NJ to be nothing more than the Parkway or the Turnpike: a place to travel through, not to.  I have to admit, I felt that way for a time; I hadn’t ever really left the state for any extended period of time.  The times that I had were fun experiences, and the people outside of NJ can be very different.  Going to Canada, for example, was a jaw dropping experience.  People are just… different.  It was weird.

Something changed recently.  I discovered just how beautiful NJ is.  This was thanks to a little slice of NJ called Rutgers Gardens.  Rutgers Gardens is a botanical garden of sorts, located on Ryders Lane in New Brunswick, nestled between Milltown and East Brunswick.  Oddly enough it is very close to Route 1.  This is very deceptive.  Very nearby to one of the busiest roadways in NJ lies a verdant forest garden full of all sorts of life.

And let me tell you: It’s gorgeous when you go at the right time of year.  Which is now, F.Y.I.  It’s gorgeous.

Better yet.  Let me show you.  View more to see just what you can find at the Gardens.  There’s a bamboo forest, ornamental rain garden, babbling brooks, giant green chairs, gorgeous plants, and a wide assortment of wildlife (including and not limited to: birds, fish, insects, and amphibians).

Side notes: Pictures taken with Canon Digital Rebel XSi (450D) with either a Canon EFSI 18-55mm or a Canon EFS 75-300mm lens.  Minor post processing in Photoshop (adjusting light/dark, color balance) was done.

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This is going to be a short review, since Dawn of War II and it’s accompanying add-on Chaos Rising have been available since 2009.  I have only recently gotten around to playing it, and I wanted to give it a fair shake.  The game received fairly mixed reviews from people I knew, but a solid 75-85 from gaming sites and magazines.  Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty.  In no particular order:


The introduction video to the game is mildly deceptive and completely vague – I have linked it here. Upon watching it, you get the distinct impression that the Eldar may be the primary ‘villain’ of the game.  The very first mission however, deals with Orks – who don’t even feature at all in the cinematic.  The game does hint at something even more sinister though.  This becomes apparent shortly thereafter.

The game begins with you, the Force Commander, and Sergeant Tarkus, leading a group of Tactical (Standard) Marines, landing on a war-torn planet of Calderis.  You and Tarkus are members of the Blood Ravens chapter of the Imperium of Man.  Calderis is one of the core recruiting worlds for the Blood Ravens.  An assault by not 1, not 2, but 3 different alien races was thought to be unheard of.  Yet, here you are.  Stuck in battle against some of nastiest nasties that the universe has seen.

As you continue through the campaign you will pick up a few other squad members: Cyrus, the Scoutmaster; Avitus, the Heavy Weapons Specialists; and Thaddeus, the Assault Marines.  Each will provide different abilities to help you succeed in your missions.  Without revealing too much of the individual missions, the plot essentially revolves around you and your Chapter attempting to retake Calderis from the Orks, who are being riled up by the Eldar, who hope to cause a massive Ork invasion in order to stop or slow down the attacking Tyranids.

Gameplay & Style

Those of you who remember the original Dawn Of War may have come here expecting a fully-fleshed out Real-Time strategy game.  You will, sadly, be disappointed.  Dawn Of War II and Chaos Rising are Real-Time Strategy games, for sure, but in Single Player they do not feature some cornerstones such as resource management and base building.  Instead, you are thrown into direct control of squads of Space Marines.  There are no reinforcements (unless you get people to specifically placed beacons throughout the maps) and if a squad loses all it’s health it becomes incapacitated until another squad can revive them.   In Multiplayer you control a small base that is primarily used to build units.  Your units then go forth and capture resource nodes (Power & Requisition, as in the original Dawn of War) to help you build your new units.  This was all a major departure from Dawn of War and initially had me a little annoyed.

However, as the game progresses, you notice that your squads are changing.  They are increasing in power, you can modify their armaments, and customize them.  They are still Blood Ravens, but the gear they carry can be matched to fit your play style.  Don’t like guns?  Take your Assault Marines and your Force Commander, equip them with a simple bolt pistol and an upgrade Chainsword or Power Fist.  Let them charge headlong into battle (this is what I do).  Love guns?  Take your Tactical Marines and your Devastators, equip them with Heavy Bolters, Missile Launchers, or Plasma Rifles.  Watch them roast the xenos from safety.  Cyrus can even receive a Shotgun or a Sniper Rifle, based on your preference.  They clearly wanted a new direction for Dawn of War II and I think that they found a good compromise here.

The gameplay is pretty fast-paced in Single Player.  The way your map score is resolved is based on 3 factors: Fury (% of enemies killed), Speed (how long did it take your to complete the objectives), and Resilience (how many of your squads ever got incapacitated).  I very rarely received more than 1 star for Speed.  I like to take my time and clean the map off, and explore every nook and crannie.  To be punished for that was kind of saddening and I don’t really understand it.  The Blitz mentality is very frustrating.


This game, in 2009, was stunningly gorgeous.  The graphics have held up pretty well into 2013.  The Warhammer 40k universe is dark, bloody, and visceral.  This carries over pretty well into the game.  In melee combat chainsaws literally sever limbs and cut things in half.  The environment is occasionally destructible (the Force Commander can charge in and break down trees and barriers, Assault Marines send trees and troops flying when they swoop in from the skies) and alive.  When the Tyranids show up, everything begins to look very alien, but in a subtle fashion.  It’s a nice visual touch that I appreciated.  Just enough to let you know that Calderis is under siege.


I haven’t finished beating the game yet.  I have invested about 2 weeks into playing it.  I am thoroughly enjoying it though, and it was certainly worth the Steam Sale price that I bought it at.  If you like a good, graphically impressive game, with a solid plot (even though there isn’t too much in the way of character development) I highly recommend it.  Look me up on Steam and we’ll play some multiplayer even.


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“Strike from the skies, brothers!”

Mike, out.


Well this is just terribly disappointing.  The Grease trucks will be leaving us forever.

One last trip this Thursday.  Let me know if you’d like to go.


After Two Decades in Same Location, Grease Trucks to Leave Rutgers LotAugust 15 | New Brunswick Today.

Malala Day At UN: Teen Activist Shot By Taliban Said 10 Moving Things That Gave Us Goosebumps (VIDEO).

So let me get this straight.

This girl is 16 years old. Gets shot IN THE HEAD. Goes on to become an activist at the UN demanding mandatory education for children around the world. Has a day named after her.

And I’m just sitting here eating Frosted Flakes and playing Eve.

Frak. Frakity frak. I need to do something with my life.

  • Open Door, Disarm Alarm.
  • Drink Coffee.
  • Swap DBAN’d HDDs for new HDDs.  Start DBAN.
  • Drink Coffee.  Eat yogurt.
  • Go upstairs.  Melt when I enter the un-air-conditioned lab.
  • Swap imaged Netbooks for new Netbooks.  Start imaging.
  • Melt some more.
  • Drink Coffee.
  • Go downstairs.  Swoon when I enter the very well air-conditioned Library Media Center.
  • Swap imaged Netbooks for new Netbooks.  Start imaging.
  • Savor the AC.
  • Drink Coffee.
  • Back to the office.
  • Eat Cereal! (or Granola Bar, like this morning, because I am an idiot and forgot my cereal on the kitchen table).
  • Reddit.
  • Deploy packages to now imaged netbooks.
  • Guess what?  More coffee.
  • Swap more hard drives.
  • Reddit!
  • Swap netbooks for a new set upstairs.
  • Swap netbooks for a new set downstairs.
  • Lunch!
  • Coffee.
  • Reddit.

Yeah.  It’s like that.

Unless something goes horrifically wrong.

Like it did to today.

But more on that later.

So, we’re looking to change over to Web Help Desk at work and we got a very handy OVA file for VMWare and got it up and running.

Let me start by saying: Web Help Desk is pretty slick.  Very full-featured, seems to be extensible, mobile friendly, email for creation/comment/take tickets.

I was initially looking at RT and even ZenDesk, but we went with Web Help Desk at the end of the day.

However, there is only part we got stuck at, and I’m still waiting to hear back from their support department: getting our certificate added to the web server to make it a SSL site.

For the life of them, they couldn’t figure out or find documentation on how to convert our wildcard PFX/PKC12 certificate over to the Tomcat (JKS) keystore.  As I recall they said “Getting this done in Windows is very easy, but most people who do choose the Linux version already know how to do this.”  Well isn’t that marvelous.  We don’t.  Do you want us to buy your product or not?  We’re still waiting to hear back, but we figured it out.  Here’s the guide for you, just in case.

Reposted from JAMF Nation

  1. Get your certificate onto your server, into a temp folder (i used /tmp).
  2. Find where your KeyTool program is located (i used ‘ find / -name “keytool” ‘).  KeyTool is installed as a part of the Java SDK.
  3. Run your keytool with the following arguments:

    keytool -v -list -storetype pkcs12
    -keystore yourkeyfilename.extension

  4. Make note of the alias for the certificate (for me I think it was apache, but I’m not 100% certain after the fact).
  5. Now we need to use the keytool to actually do the conversion.

    keytool -importkeystore -srckeystore yourkeyfilename.extension
    -srcstoretype pkcs12 -srcalias thealias -destkeystore newkeystorefile.jks
    -deststoretype jks -deststorepass apassword -destalias tomcat

  6. Now place the certificate wherever you need it and you’re good to go!

Notes: You don’t need to supply a password.  I didn’t.  The destalias can be required to be something by whatever program you’re plugging into.  For me it was tomcat.  srcalias is the alias from step 4.

Thanks to Nick Koval (nkoval) for the fix.