Posts tagged 'General'

Dive into Python... yum

I ate a big ole slab of Dive into Python cake today (thanks Mark). The cake is probably gone by now, but you can buy the book on Amazon so get to it!


oh god no

Testing 1 2 3

Testing Roller

Russell demonstrates the power of plain old JSP.

Russell has been busy updating his minimalistic JSP-based Weblogging package, which he now calls MyBlog. He added an Atom feed and then added a single JSP page implementation of the Blogger, Blogger2, MovableType, and MetaWeblog APIs. It is amazing and a little scary what you can do with a single JSP. He mentions the complexity of the same API implementation in other Java blogging packages, Blojsom, Pebble, and Roller. I can't take credit for the Roller implementation, I stole it from Blojsom.

MySQL update kills timestamp fields?

I've got a table that looks like this:

create table comment (
    id         varchar(48) not null primary key,
    entryid    varchar(48) not null,
    name       varchar(255) null,
    email      varchar(255) null,
    url        varchar(255) null,
    content    text null,
    posttime   timestamp not null,
    spam       bit default 0 not null,
    remotehost varchar(128) null
And I want to set the spam field in all rows to false like so:
update comment set spam=false;
But that command also resets all of the posttime fields in the table to the current time. If I use the following command, my posttime fields are preserved.
update comment set spam=false, posttime=posttime;
What's up with that? Why does an update of one field affect other fields?

Gentoo it is not.

Long story short: I ran into too many build failures during and after completion of my Gentoo Linux installation. I'm not sure if I have hardware problems or if Gentoo's support for my Athlon XP CPU is flakey or what, but I'm out of patience. I'm switching over to Debian.

Stupid irrestable urges.

Why do I do it? Why do I have to re-install Linux every six months? Every time I do it, without fail, I find myself on my knees with my computer case open, swearing out load, and muttering "why the hell did I do this." I have the same problem with room re-arrangement. Every couple of months I find that I must, I simply must, rearrange some room in the house. I empty the bookcases, take everything off of every surface, and burn a day re-arranging and cleaning and putting everything back together again. Sometimes it works out for the best - I learn something cool about Linux or I find a better way to use the space in my house. Usually, it is just a waste of time.

My latest re-installfest was a classic example of this phenomenon. I had told myself and even mentioned to my wife that I wouldn't do it. I would resist the urge to install Gentoo Linux. I had too way to many things to do, but late one night in a moment of weak geekness I burned a Gentoo install CD and it was all downhill from there. It took me a week and a half to get back where I started: a Linux box with Apache hooked up to Tomcat via JK2, MySQL Roller, and Gallery. Along the way I installed Gentoo three times, took out memory modules then put them back in, moved my CD drive from one IDE controller to another, installed Debian unstable, unstalled Debian testing, and fought and won a bloody battle with JK2. I gained nothing! I think need a therapist.


Calling the Netflix bluff.

Netflix is raising prices again, but Kuro5hin suggest that by attempting to cancel your Netflix account, you can get a better deal - even better than before the price hike. I've been a Netflix member for five years now, so I remember how good the service used to be. Turn-around time on DVD shipments has gone up sharply and so has the frequency of critically damaged DVDs. I'm gonna call that bluff. I have nothing to lose.

Changing seasons.

Unreasonable deadline season is almost over and life is returning to normal. I should finally have a little time to complete my Struts Control Flow example.

New software.

This site is now running Tomcat 5 and MySQL 4. The site seems quite a bit faster, which is of course a good thing. Now that I'm running on MySQL 4, both at home and on this site, I would like to add referential integrity to the Roller database. To that end, I've been reading up on MySQL and playing around with DBDesigner4, an ERWin-like database modeling tool recommended by Scott Switzer on the Roller dev-list. DBDesigner4 is an impressive piece of software with a very slick user interface and, best of all, DBDesigner4 is free -- licensed under GPL.

Last week, I bought a copy of Dragon Naturally Speaking Prefered for Windows (about $150 including microphone headset). I'm using it to dictate this weblog entry and it is working very well. It took only about 10 minutes to train Dragon to understand my mumbly and lispy voice. Dragon works well, but to use it effectively you must think before speaking and you must speak very clearly. This is really not a problem because just about everybody, and especially mumbly me, needs practice thinking before speaking and speaking clearly.

I'm getting a new desktop machine at work and I'm trying to decide which Linux distribution to use. I'm going to use the machine for development work using Eclipse, Tomcat, and PostgreSQL. The guys down the hall like Gentoo, but the consensus among RTPBloggers is that Debian is a better choice -- much more mature, stable, and widely-supported. I'm assuming that Eclipse is stable on both Gentoo and Debian, please correct me if I'm wrong.

This just in.

Deadlines still suck - so get the coffee brewing, it's gonna be a late night.

Deadlines suck.

That's all.

Clements thinks we are serious.

Clemens thinks we are all serious about this open source software thing. Ssssh! Don't tell him we are just doing it to cut off Microsoft's air supply. Oh, and by the way, as soon as Microsoft is out of business, one Roller license will cost you about $10,000/server.

When a snow day is not a snow day.

When you have a rapidly approaching deadline, a VPN connection to work, and a house full of sick kiddies, a snow day is not all that much fun.

Busy week.

That was a long and busy week with lots of meetings, a big customer visit, app server portability gremlins, and a code freeze that never got past the slush stage. I didn't have a whole lot of time for blogging, but I did setup a new weblog at work to track the progress of some remote dev work that I am coordinating. I'll be spending some time this weekend working on my TriJUG presentation and perhaps that will provide some fodder for blogging.

Views of Orkut.

Orkut is a new brand of web-based social software, similar to Friendster and LinkedIn. Here's how it works. You enter personal information about yourself, build a network of friends, forget about the whole thing for a couple of months until some other service is introduced, rinse and repeat.

Everybody seems to be blogging about Orkut these days and presenting lots of viewpoints, but two of today's posts were interesting studies in contrast - at least for me. You have the idealistic view and the realistic view. I'm an idealistic realist, so I find lots to agree with in both posts. I agree with Danah about fans vs. friends. Being a fan of somebody is less of a relationship than being a friend. Fans observe, follow (and in the worse case, stalk) from afar. If you notice that somebody is a fan of yours, you might be inspired to get to know them and perhaps become friends.

Back to work.

It was a little difficult to return to work today after two weeks off. I enjoy my job, but after two weeks of sleeping late, playing with the kids, and hacking Roller, I felt like a kid going back to school. We've got another release coming up, so I need to get in gear fast. I also need to wrap up hierarchical categories for Roller and finish up the Roller presentation that I hope to present at the February TriJUG meeting.

Support Blogging Roller.

Instead of donating to me, I urge you to donate to one of these important causes:

(In other words, I took the Paypal button off of the page.)

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