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Why Coyote Danced the Samba on the Internet


In the days before Google Drive and Drop Box and everlater.com, Coyote went to see a witch who was going on pilgrimages all over the world. "I get pretty pictures from all the places I go," said the witch. "I have met Krishna in India and Zeus in Greece. I have met Nokhubulwane in South Africa and she and I went on Safari all the way to Egypt to have beer with Osiris. I ran from Tezcotlepoca in Mexico City and got the whole thing on 2240 by 1680 jpgs on my Nikon." "Very nice," said Coyote.

"Here is the thing," said the woman, "I want to be able to send these pictures and Word documents that I make on my laptop to my familiar spirit Mittens. Mittens transforms them into these pretty pdfs and things with his magic. That way, Mittens can work on the next one from here while I am in Hawaii scuba diving with Pele." "OK," said Coyote, "You should run linux."

The witch's office already had a static ip. Some sales beast at her ISP had convinced her they were better. Coyote frowned, because she wasn't using it, but he knew how it could be useful now.

Coyote took an old desktop that the witch didn't need anymore. He put linux and apache on it and PHP. He found a script that would let the witch upload large files just by going to a webpage and installed it. Then he showed the witch how to combine the pictures and word documents into archives. "This is clever," said the witch, "I can even put the documents and pictures into the same archive so Mittens can easily see which ones go together." "It is exceedingly clever," said Coyote.

"But," said the witch, "how will Mittens get the files? Mittens is clever with pdfs, but not so much with computers." "That is easy," said Coyote.

Coyote took the new linux machine and taught it how to dance the samba. Mittens' Windows computer already knew how that dance worked. When Coyote was done teaching, he told the two computers to go dance with each other. Now Mittens had a network drive mapped on his computer and all the witch's files would just appear on it when she uploaded them. "This is great!" said the witch.

Coyote was happy that the witch was happy.


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