The SLUUG Cronicle

January 2002

St. Louis UNIX Users Group

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Table of Contents

Calendar of Events

January 1 Tuesday New Years Day
January 3 Thursday SLACC 6:30pm - 9:00pm
January 3 Thursday SILUG - O'Fallon 7:00pm - 9:00pm
January 7 Monday SILUG - Carbondale 7:00pm - 9:00pm
January 8 Tuesday LUCI - Newbie Night 7:00pm - 9:00pm
January 8 Tuesday CCSL - Dinner Meeting
  Topic: Civil Liberties
  RESERVATIONS: 314-995-4652
January 9 Wednesday SLUUG - General Meeting
  Topic: Bioinformatics
  Tutorial: LDAP
6:30pm - 9:00pm
January 10 Thursday St. Louis Java Users Group 6:30pm - 8:00pm
January 12 Saturday Deadline: Submissions for Lightning Talks 11:59pm
January 14 Monday SLUUG - Steering Committee 6:15pm - 8:30pm
January 15 Tuesday MOSLUG
  NOTE: Not the normal date
7:00pm -11:00pm
January 15 Tuesday STLWEBDEV
  Topic: Copyright
6:30pm - 9:00pm
January 15 Tuesday XML SIG 6:00pm - 7:00pm
January 17 Thursday St. Louis Linux Users Group
  Topic: GNOME
7:00pm - 9:00pm
January 21 Monday Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
January 22 Tuesday Hazelwood LUG
6:30pm - 9:00pm
January 22 Tuesday LUCI 7:00pm - 9:00pm
January 22 Tuesday Wireless SIG 6:30pm - 9:00pm
February 13 Wednesday SLUUG - General Meeting
  Topic: Lightning Talks
February 21 Thursday St. Louis Linux Users Group
  Topic: Vulnerability Detection
February 26 Tuesday Hazelwood LUG 6:30pm

NOTE: More information on these groups, including locations and web sites, can be found in the "Meeting Locations" section below.

Next General Meeting is Wednesday, January 9, 2002

6:30 pm Tutorial LDAP by Tony Zafiropoulos
7:00 pm Announcements Standard Introductions & Procedures
7:05 pm Q & A An opportunity to ask technical questions
7:15 pm Break Social, off-line conversations, book sales
7:20 pm Admittance to building may not be possible after 7:20.
7:30 pm Presentation Bioinformatics by Robert Citek


by Tony Zafiropoulos

LDAP stands for Lightweight Directory Application Protocol. That doesn't really tell what it is though. It is a way to access information about people (and devices) within an organization. In this case "Directory" is more like a phone book directory than a directory of files on a disk.

LDAP can be used in several different ways. In this tutorial, Tony will show us a few of the ways that LDAP can be useful.

Tony Zafiropoulos has a last name that's hard to spell and even for some people to pronounce. That's why he often goes by Tony Z. Tony has been very active in our group, helping organize InstallFests, ITEC presentations, Linux meetings, etc. He currently serves as SLUUG Secretary.


by Robert Citek

It all started on evening in a little pizza place. We had just finished a Linux Demo Day, and gathered for some food. Robert started talking about the work he was doing, which was involved in maintaining computer hardware and software to do Genomic research. The conversation veered more toward the Biology than computers, as Robert explained various topics related to the work he does.

Eventually, we convinced Robert to give a presentation at SLUUG, covering the basics of Genomics as well as how he is using computers, and specifically Open Source, to help with the research. The presentation was great, but there's a lot of material to cover.

So we convinced Robert to give another presentation filling in some of the details. This is Part 2, a continuation of the previous presentation. Robert will rehash some of the original material so that if you did not attend last time, you will not be in the dark.

Robert lives with his wife, who is from Argentina, and several computers, who are from somewhere in Asia. He recently traveled to Argentina to visit his wife's family, but hasn't been to Asia recently.

Ideas, questions and suggestions are welcome; please contact Christine Wanta (

Book Sales

The O'Reilly and Associates line of books is available at each monthly general meeting as a convenience to our members. Proceeds from the book sales go toward running the organization. Most months we feature special offers on titles related to that month's presentation or tutorial topic. Discounts off retail prices are offered to all attendees.

Books that are not available at the meetings may be ordered to be picked up at the next SLUUG general meeting. Contact Sue Hurst (

January Specials:

Any Bioinformatics title - 30% off
Any Perl title - 30% off
"Mastering Regular Expressions" - 30% off
"Learning Red Hat Linux" (1st edition only) - 70% off
All Microsoft titles - 70% off
All other titles - 25% off

Next St. Louis Linux Users Group Meeting Is January 17

Presentation: GNOME - Past, Present, and Future
by Jamin P. Gray

GNOME is one of the leading open source desktop environments and application development frameworks. Companies such as Red Hat have devoted hackers working on GNOME full time. Ximian has built a company around GNOME. HP and Sun have announced they they are migrating away from CDE to GNOME in their UNIX offerings. The project is gaining momentum and excited interest from outside viewers, but what does it all mean and where are we headed?

The GNOME Project is in a state of transition right now, as developers are moving from the 1.x platform to the new 2.x platform, so now is a perfect time to talk about the state of the project. The purpose of this presentation is to make the audience more familiar with the project by discussing its history, current state, and taking a glimpse into the future of GNOME.

The following will be covered in the presentation:

I. History of the GNOME Project II. Where GNOME is at Now III. The Future of GNOME IV. How You can get Involved

Jamin P. Gray is 23 years old and works at BJC Health System as a Senior Analyst/UNIX Programmer in the IIG (Integration Infrastructure Group). He codes and maintains the interfaces that handle the transfer of data messages from one Hospital department to another within the BJC network. Previously he was a consultant with Stockell Consulting placed at BJC. He has also worked at Stockell Healthcare Systems as a Visual C++ Programmer, Unigraphics as a UNIX C Programmer, and Washington University Electronic Radiology Laboratory as a UNIX C Programmer.

Jamin has been using UNIX and Linux for over 5 years, Linux being the only operating system he has used at home for the past 3 years.

Jamin started using GNOME several years ago when it was at about version 0.25. It was incredibly buggy and was not remotely palatable to the average user. Yet something struck him as being beautiful about the goals of the GNOME Project. For a year or two he kept a close eye on the project and used it as his primary desktop environment. When GNOME 1.4 was being prepped for release the release team sent out an email soliciting help. They wanted someone to help coordinate an additional release -- a set of extra applications that would work well with the core GNOME release. Jamin volunteered right away and ended up working with Ian Peters from Ximian to release what ended up being called "The Fifth Toe." Having such a wonderful time working with Ian and the rest of the release team on GNOME 1.4, Jamin volunteered for a second round for GNOME 2.0. We're in the thick of the release process now which you'll learn more about from my presentation.

Comments, questions, and ideas for the St. Louis Linux Users Group are welcome; please send email to

Meeting Locations

SLUUG - St. Louis UNIX Users Group (
General Meeting

Meets the 2nd Wednesday of the month, 6:30pm to 9:00pm. Free and open to the public.
Sunnen Products
7910 Manchester (at Hanley)
St. Louis, MO
Directions: Take I-64 (US 40) to the Hanley exit south. Turn left at Manchester, then an immediate right into Sunnen driveway.


(NOTE: A security guard from Sunnen is scheduled to be at the door from 6:20pm to 7:20pm to allow entry. After 7:20, the door will be unattended and you may not be able to enter.)

SLUUG - St. Louis UNIX Users Group (
Steering Committee

Meets the Monday following the 2nd Wednesday of the month, 6:15pm to 8:30pm. Open to the public. This is where we make decisions on what topics to cover and other administration of the group. If you want to get involved, this is a good place to start.
Daugherty Systems
One City Place, 2nd floor
Creve Coeur, MO 63141

St. Louis Linux Users Group (STLLUG) (

Meets the 3rd Thursday of each month, 7:00pm to 9:00pm. The room is reserved starting at 6:00pm. (Ask a librarian to let you in if it is locked.) Members are encouraged to come early to mingle and/or give informal demos or presentations. Free and open to the public. (Formerly known as the Linux SIG.)
Indian Trails Library
8400 Delport Drive (at Midland)
St. Louis, MO
Directions:   Take I-170 to Page east. Turn left at North-South. Turn left at Midland. Drive 2 blocks and turn left on Delport. The library is on your left.


Hazelwood LUG (

Generally meets the 4th Tuesday of each month, 6:30pm to 9:00pm. (NOTE: Start time has moved earlier -- to 6:30.) Free and open to the public. This is a SIG of SLUUG, intended for Linux newbies.
Prairie Commons Library
915 Utz Lane (between Howdershell and Dunn)
Hazelwood, MO

MOSLUG - MO Open Source LUG (

Meets on the 1st Tuesday of the month, from 7:00pm to 11:00pm. (NOTE: January's meeting is an exception and will be the 15th.) Meetings are free and open to everyone. This is a Linux Users Group (LUG) for all levels, from new beginners to the more advanced users.
Culpeppers Restaurant (basement)
312 S. Kirkwood Road
Kirkwood, MO 63122

STLBSD - St. Louis BSD Users (

Does not have any official meetings, but they often gather informally at SLUUG meetings. Look for guys with Daemons on their shirts.

SLACC - St. Louis Area Computer Club (

Meets the 1st Thursday of every month, from 6:30pm to 9:00pm.
Thornhill Library
12863 Willowyk Drive (off Fee Fee)
Creve Coeur, MO

PerlMongers (

Meets the 1st Thursday of every month, from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.
5 North Jackson at Forsyth
Clayton, MO

St. Louis Java Users Group (

Meets the 2nd Thursday of every month, 6:30pm to 8:00pm.
CityPlace One Auditorium
One City Place
Creve Coeur, MO 63141

STLWEBDEV - St. Louis Web Developers (

Meets the 3rd Tuesday of the month from 6:30pm to 9:00pm. Meetings are free and open to everyone. This is an open group to facilitate communications between diverse professions involved in Internet/Intranet design and development. STLWEBDEV is also the St. Louis chapter of the International Webmasters Association and the HTML Writers Guild (IWA-HWG).
CityPlace One Auditorium
One City Place
Creve Coeur, MO 63141


This is a SIG of STLWEBDEV. The first meeting will be before the STLWEBDEV meeting, at the same location. It will start at 6:00pm. Meetings are free and open to everyone.

Wireless SIG (

Meets the 4th Tuesday of the month, from 6:30pm to 9:00pm. Meetings are free and open to everyone. Refreshments at 6:30, program begins at 7:00. This group is a cooperative effort of both the St. Louis Web Developers and the St. Louis Java Users Group.
CityPlace One Auditorium
One City Place
Creve Coeur, MO 63141

CCSL - Computer Consultants of St. Louis (
Monthly Dinner Meeting

Meetings are held the second Tuesday of each month at Cheshire Inn. RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED. Cost is $20 per member, $25 per non-member. Call Susan Pope, 314-995-4652. Social hour starts at 5:30pm, meeting starts at 6:30pm.
Cheshire Inn
6306 Clayton Rd.
St. Louis, MO

SILUG - Southern Illinois LUG (
O'Fallon meeting

The SILUG O'Fallon meeting is generally on the first Thursday of the month. It runs from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.
O'Fallon Public Library
120 Civic Plaza
O'Fallon, IL

SILUG - Southern Illinois LUG (
Carbondale meeting

The SILUG Carbondale meeting is the 1st Monday of the month, from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.
Life Sciences III
1059 Auditorium
Carbondale, IL

LUCI - Linux Users of Central Illinois (

All LUCI meetings are held at the same location, from 7:00pm to 9:00pm. General meetings are on the 4th Tuesday of the month, and Newbie night is held on the 2nd Tuesday of the month.
Illinois State Museum Research & Collections Center
1011 East Ash St.
Springfield, IL 62703

Mizzou LUG (

The Mizzou LUG has an active web site, but does not appear to hold regular meetings. For information, check their web site.
Columbia, MO

We publish meeting schedules of groups in the St. Louis region that may be of interest to our members. If you would like to have info added about your group, please mail the newsletter editor ( or call any of the SLUUG officers.


WARNING: These articles may express personal opinions and SLUUG exerts no more editorial control over such content than does a public library, bookstore, or newsstand. Any opinions, advice, statements, services, offers, or other information or content expressed herein are those of the respective authors and not necessarily supported by SLUUG. SLUUG does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any content, nor its merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose.

SLUUG Elections

This is the official notice. As required by the By-laws, the Thursday February 21, 2002 meeting shall constitute the annual membership meeting and elections. SLUUG is incorporated as an association in the state of Missouri. Anyone having attended 2 meetings in this previous calendar year is eligible to vote.


We are trying a new voting method this year. We will vote by paper ballot at 3 different meetings. You can only have your vote count once. You will be given an envelope with your name so that the judges know there is only one vote and you are an eligible voter. The ballots will then be removed and counted anonymously.

Ballots can be cast at:

The counting will take place at the February Steering Committee meeting. Speech making by the candidates will happen at the Wednesday general meeting. This change is being done to accommodate those members who make it on only certain nights of the week, etc. Comments are welcome.

The elections are for 2 seats on the Board of Directors. (There are a total of 5 directors.) One Board seat is currently held by Gary Meyer who will not be running this year. His seat is a regular 3 year term and is up for its regular election. The second seat is a special election. Dave Mills is resigning his seat with 1 year remaining on the term. The winner of this special election will fill the remaining year. As of this writing, only 1 candidate has stated his desire to run for a Board seat: Stan Reichardt. There will also be an advisory vote for officers. The officers are technically elected by the Board, but it is our tradition to hold this advisory election, which the Board will implement.

The current incumbents are:

President: Ed Wehner
Vice Pres: Dave Mills
Secretary: Tony Zafiropoulos
Treasurer: Mike Kriz
Dave Mills will not be running again.

We are VERY open to any additional nominations for these positions. For more information, contact Gary Meyer (314-781-8644 or, any Board member, any officer, or any member of the steering committee. (See the Contacts section below for contact info.)

If you would like to check whether you are listed as a valid voter, please contact the Secretary, TonyZ.

Lightning Talks

by Mike King (Mike808)

LIGHTNING TALKS are two sessions of 5 consecutive 5-minute talks separated by a ten-minute recess.
Note: The most current Lightning Talks information is at

If any of these apply, then we want a Lightning Talk from you!
LIGHTNING TALKS are consecutive 5-minute talks on a tight schedule. You should be prepared to take the stage immediately, explain your idea, and then leave immediately. If you want to take questions, chat, or trade business cards, resumes, or URLs, you do it after the session. Be prepared to provide a URL for your topic.
If you'd like to give a LIGHTNING TALK, send an abstract of about 50 words about your topic to:
All submissions must be received no later than 11:59pm Saturday, January 12th, 2002.
The SLUUG Steering Committee will be presented with recommendations, and final selections of the 10 Lightning Talks, and 2 alternates will be made at the January 14th, 2002 meeting. Notification will be sent to the selectees, and the schedule announced at the December Linux meeting on January 17, 2002. The final schedule of Lightning Talks will also be announced in the February newsletter.
Thanks and credit goes to Mark-Jason Dominus for this brilliant idea which we have unabashedly stolen. The original Lightning Talks were at YAPC 19100 (Yet Another Perl Conference 2000).

College Class on Cryptography and Security

by Gary Meyer

An FYI for our membership. I notice that St. Louis University's Mathematical Computer Science Department is teaching its undergrad class in Cryptography again.

It seems like a very worthwhile course that I haven't noticed elsewhere in town. I sat in on a couple sessions in previous years. It will be a mathematical treatment of encoding and encrypting messages with an natural emphasis on computers & communictaions. RSA & DES will be highlited.

The professor is Mike May S.J. He has his doctorate in Math from U.C. Berkley. (He has come to our user group meetings, most recently in attendance at the Thursday Linux meeting on crypto about 3 months ago.) He taught it with students sitting in front of computers, working problems and samples real-time, in-class. It is a MWF class at 9:00-9:50am. It is a 400 level class, i.e. students are expected to be of "senior year" caliber. Classes start the week of Jan 14.


For more information about sponsoring the St. Louis UNIX Users Group, contact Dave Mills (


When free speech is desired, free software is required.
 -- unknown

I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.
 -- Thomas Watson, IBM Chairman, 1943

Perl is like vice grips. You can do anything with it, and it's 
the wrong tool for every job.

When someone says that in time of war we must curtail our freedoms,
must curtail our civil rights, must put parts of the Bill of Rights 
in abeyance, [...] they are telling us flat out that the American 
Way of Life, that Democracy as a form of government, is too weak 
and fragile to be trusted during crises, but is merely a luxury to 
be enjoyed during those few moments of tranquility.
 -- Tom Chapin

Anyone who wishes to advocate legislation requiring backdoors in 
encryption products must first write a paper showing how this would 
prevent terrorists from secretly communicating with each other. 
Explain the term "steganography" and show how your legislation would 
prevent terrorists from using it. Explain why terrorists would be 
unable to fall back on codebooks full of innocuous phrases, hidden in 
apparent music CDs. Explain how your legislation would be enforced
outside the U.S. Prove that your legislation would not have any 
serious impact on banking, credit card transactions, or internet 
commerce. Be prepared to defend your thesis to a panel selected by 
Philip Zimmermann and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
 -- unknown

Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it.
Those who study history are doomed to know it's repeating. 
 -- JWhitlock on Slashdot

Passport is like a roach motel. Your data checks in, but it can't
check out.
 -- Scott Granneman

Some day we'll have 170 gig drives laying around that we can't use 
because no machines will support drives that small.
 -- Leo Jones

Those who mourn for 'USENET like it was' should remember the original
design estimates of maximum traffic volume: 2 articles/day.
 -- Steven Bellovin

Stan makes his members swipe their library card.
 -- Mike Knight

A bash poem:
  time for echo in canyon; do echo $echo $echo; done
 -- Jon Abbott on Slashdot

There are two major products that come out of Berkeley: LSD and BSD.
We don't believe this to be a coincidence.

Blessed are the poor, for they don't have to use computers.

Assumption is the mother of all f*ck ups.
 -- Gibbys Box of Trix on Slashdot

Nobody ever got fired for choosing Microsoft.
Nobody ever looked stupid for choosing Linux.
 -- Jebediah21 on Slashdot

Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

As our membership grows, we have had some inquiries about the possibility of having Special Interest Groups in several areas. If you are interested in starting or participating in a SIG for System Administration, Networking, C, Object Oriented Programming, a specific vendor, etc., please call Dave Mills at 314-997-1104 extension 351, or contact any officer of the group.


SLUUG administration is volunteer based. We're always looking for volunteers to help with presentations, web page development, managing corporate sponsorships, and many other tasks. If you would like to help out contact Christine Wanta (


  President Ed Wehner
  Vice-President Dave Mills
  Secretary Tony Zafiropoulos 
  Treasurer Mike Kriz 
  Linux Users Group Chair Craig Buchek
Home: 314-426-5780
Cell: 314-374-5780
  Board of Directors Gary Meyer
Rich Seibel
Ed Wehner
Dave Mills
Craig Buchek
  Presentations Christine Wanta
  Corporate Sponsors Dave Mills
  O'Reilly Book Sales Susan Hurst
Home: 314-822-9314
Cell: 314-486-3261
  Newsletter Editor Craig Buchek
Home: 314-426-5780
Cell: 314-374-5780
  Contributing Editor Stan Reichardt
Home: 314-298-1183
  Steering Committee Info Gary Meyer
Home: 314-781-8644
  BBS Questions Gary Meyer
  Official Correspondence SLUUG Mailing Address PO Box 411302
St. Louis, MO 63141

Submitting Articles to the SLUUG Cronicle

If you would like to submit an article to the Cronicle of general interest to the members of the St. Louis UNIX Users Group, send your info or complete article to The deadline for article submissions is the second last day of the month.

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