Friday, November 2, 2007

Please visit our regular blog at

It seems that a few folks have been coming here wondering where the CatSynth blog has gone. Well, this was our temporary home during a brief outage in the summer, and we have returned to our regular site at So please do visit us there for all the latest on cats, synthesizers, music, art, opionion and more :)

Monday, July 23, 2007

We're back!

We'll, it looks like get switched back on at around 6PM tonight. Yes, it seems like it was just flipping a switch (actually, updating a few DNS records) and then everything happened exactly is I figured it should have...five days ago.

Of course, I am very happy to have CatSynth, my music site, and my personal email back. But the experience leaves me with a lot of questions, including whether I should continue to shop for a new Internet hosting service...

This will probably be the last post at the trailer, as we happily migrate back to our real home at!

Tech support transcripts

Well, day 5 began pretty much as the last four had, with no and thus we're still here in the trailer.
Since it was "normal business hours", I decided to try chat support this time instead of phone support. I tend to think that one gets better support on the phone in general, given the immediacy and tendancy to be "stuck in the conversation" (something that telemarketers rely on). But I actually got more info about the situation from this first chat session that in the previous phone support over the past four days. Though that's not saying much. You can judge the quality of the conversation for yourself:

henryg: Hello! How may I help you?
Visitor87718: Yes, I am continuing to have problems with my domain since last Thursday
henryg: have a nice day, talk to you later
henryg: opss sorry :)
henryg: May i have your registration number, please
henryg: the problem is that the domain expired
Visitor87718: yes, it should have been renewed with the current plan
Visitor87718: and the previous two support people on Thursday and Saturday
said this was in process
henryg: but the domain is located in different account
henryg: let me find that account for you
Visitor87718: huh? It should be same account as the Solo XR hosting
henryg: i found it, our admins still working on the issue
Visitor87718: any estimates on how long this is going to take?
henryg: sorry for the delay i will put it on the highest possible priority
Visitor87718: ok, thanks
Visitor87718: is it going to be part of the same account when this done?
Visitor87718: if not, i should probably get the old account info as well...
henryg: part of this account
Visitor87718: ok
henryg: and as soon as we fix it we will notify you to your contact email
Visitor87718: when is good time to check back to see if things are working?
Visitor87718: ok
Visitor87718: thanks
henryg: i understand
henryg: you are doing good :)
Visitor87718: ok, then...i think that's it for now
Visitor87718: thanks
henryg: you are welcome

So, that did have a new piece of information, the whole "not part of the same account" thing, which seems strange but not impossible. OK, let's check back in a few hours and see how the admins did on this high-priority request:

henryg: Hello! How may I help you?
Visitor51520: hi, wanted to check on the issue w/ from earlier
henryg: hi
henryg: ok let me check
henryg: we still waitin our admin to restore it
Visitor51520: hmmm, seems like a while...are there any updates on progress?
henryg: no sir, the ticket is still pointed to the admin
henryg: as soon as he fix it he will point the ticket back to the level1
Visitor51520: ok, so no change since it was sent to the admin this morning
(i.e., no follow up comments)
henryg: and we will inform you as soon as we get it
henryg: no :(
Visitor51520: ok

OK, so absolutely nothing had happened. That's pretty much the end of my patience. I did find an escalation contact, who I gave the whole story (including the fact that it was four days over the 24-hour waiting period to contact them), but also started looking into the VP of Customer Care and others I could send my cancellation to, for dramatic effect of nothing else...Let's see how things are by tomorrow morning...

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Beating the heat with cold packs and music

It has been hot here on the California coast. For a lot of folks 85F isn't that hot, but it is for this location, where we traditionally have heavy fog and sea breezes in the summer. This is the hottest, driest season I have seen since I moved to Santa Cruz. And while I'm generally OK with heat, Luna is not. It gets hot in that little fur suit, and I've been leaving a cold pack on her favorite blue towel to cool things down a bit.

Let's crack open all the windows!

We can also stay cooler by going downstairs to the music studio - the main upstairs area has been getting extra hot in the evenings, baked by the afternoon and evening sun. It's good to be downstairs this weekend, though, as I have plenty of musical tasks to keep me busy in the evenings. First, there is our proposals for the revived Woodstockhausen Festival. Hopefully we're in. Plus, I got a surprise phone call from a fellow musician I saw at last week's Skronkathon performance, inviting me to join her band this coming Friday. I'll be performing live electronics, mostly processing an electric guitar. I think some of the same programming I did last week for the Indian string instruments will be applicable again. I've been reviewing some of the pieces for the Friday set to get ideas - I can't play them here as they are unreleased commercial recordings. The thick textures with voice, electronics and bass suggest I do something much more sparse and articulated, though that in part depends on the guitarist. We have a rehearsal scheduled for Wednesday...

Sunday has been a bit more reasonable (or at least felt that way), so plenty of time out by the ocean and in the garden. Plus, on Sunday some of the annoying tourists leave.

Once things cool down, there are some good films to watch here at CatSynth, too...

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Calling tech support again

Well, we're still here in exile, and it looks like it will last though the rest of the weekend at a minimum. We talked to another nice man at tech support late this morning, who said it would take 24-48 hours to reinstate the domain. And this is 24-48 hours after the first call where they said the same thing.

I can't understand why it takes multiple days to re-register a domain name. I've registered plenty in my time, and they usually come up within an hour of payment (e.g., and I even tried to simply re-order myself to prove the point, but of course that didn't work because someone already owns it...

What may not be apparent is that losing affects not only CatSynth, but my main music site, direct CD purchasing, and my main personal and artistic email address. This is a huge mess.

Weekend Cat Blogging #111 and Chaos in Exile

This is bad kitty chaos indeed, as we head into day 3 of CatSynth in Exile. But that won't stop us from participating in Weekend Cat Blogging #111, hosted by our friends Kashim and Othello. They were nice enough to stop by Luna at Catster to cheer her up a bit.

We miss our real home, of course.

Meanwhile, we'll also try and find our way to the Friday Ark and Carnival of the Cats.

Friday, July 20, 2007

CatSynth 1st anniversary in exile

Well, all this of course happened on what should have been a happy event for CatSynth, our one-year anniversary. We've done our best to mark the event elsewhere, such as at Luna's Catster Page and Synthwire, and of course, here at the trailer.

Thanks to our friends for their support...

Welcome to our temporary home

Welcome to the temporary home of We'll park ourselves here in the "trailer" while we get things sorted out.

Actually, the site is still up and running fine. It's our primary domain "" that is the problem. Apparently our ISP neglected to renew our domain name. Simple bureaucratic incompetence. Unlike FEMA, there's not even a pretense of their helping us find temporary housing. So here we are.

True, it could be a lot worse, we could actually be in a FEMA trailer after having our entire town trashed".