Older blog entries for Radagast (starting at number 15)

Hans Petter got back to Mexico today. He was slightly miffed that I didn't manage to arange a pickup at the airport, but other stuff was going on at exactly the same time.

Spent some time clearing up things around the office, meetings, etc. Seems that most things I have to do are taken care of now. Maybe Easter will even be nice and quiet.

Hacking GNOME pages again now, while talking to Belinda. She's working on a resume and things before her job-hunting trip to Tulsa. It seems that Leo might be able to get her some contract illustration work on a site he's working on, which would be cool. Everyone who sees it seem to like her work on the Flux site.

Today seemed eventful, but when I sit down and try to sum it up, there's not that much to say. I hate it when that happens.

Got to work late today. Rune and Monica are back from NAB 2000, brought their usual stacks of brochures, demo version CDs, and stuff. Going to be fun to go through all of it. I noticed a Maya CD in the stack, and I desperately want to play with it.

Spent half an hour getting a bank account and a card. Smoother than I expected in general, and a hell of a lot smoother than what I'm used to from Mexico.

Miguel called, his plane had just landed. Went to eat with him, Federico, and Chac. Had an excellent time, and since it was an Argentinian restaurant, ate more meat than I'd like to admit.

Got to talk to Belinda for a little, then a meeting, and some GNOME site hacking. I'm falling in love with the Mozilla hackers, just seeing activity on my bug gives me this great feeling. Not that it's fixed yet or anything, but it's the principle of the thing.

Weekends are nice. They give me time to do real work.

Spent a lot of time yesterday with the JavaScript stuff for the new GNOME pages, specifically to try to make it work in Mozilla. Got it working to 90%, decided the rest was a Mozilla bug, and it turns out I was right. Oh, and kudos to the Mozilla people in general, it's great to see hordes of coders descent upon the bug and pull its guts out. I love you all.

Went over to Leo's apartment last night, cooked nice dinner and watched The Name of the Rose. Bad VHS copy, but still a great movie. Went home pretty late.

Back in Mexico. The flight was nice yesterday, in some ways, at least. It was wonderfully clear weather, so I got to see the city better than I think I ever have before. It's starting to feel like home now, which is weird, but it's been two years, after all.

Working out what to do with my future got complicated a few days ago, and then it suddenly got a lot easier again. I love it when that happens.

It's nice and warm, too. I'm spending my time catching up on stuff that was too cumbersome to do from Norway, and then later tonight it's GNOME website full time, baby. I'm expecting that project to show considerable progress through this week, now that I'm back at the office, and doing nothing else of consequence.

Phone conference with people today to sort out GNOME web site issues. Reached agreement, after I had to have all my communications filtered through another person, because the weird way I entered the conference made all sound going to and from me totally disappear, except for to and from one other person. Oh, well.

Wow, I think there's some rule that says online communities are at their most active when they get to discuss themselves. From all the forums I've been involved with throughout the last 10 years, that's certainly been the rule. I wonder why. It seems to be a good sign, though, people growing so attached to their community that they get involved deeply when there's talk of changing it, etc.

Going back to Mexico on Monday. Should be good, my office there is at least a hell of a lot more practical than the "desk with a windows box and a modem" I have here. Oh, and it's warmer. And it'll be possible to get coding again, which is more or less impossible here.

Gender politics scare me. Somehow, it's the sort of arena where people tend to hate each other no matter how reasonable or unreasonable the opinions are. I tend to try to stay out of those discussions. Why can't we all just get along?

Peer press is forming into licensing and XML working groups. Good. Perhaps we can reach something usable pretty soon.

I originally felt that basing the new GNOME web pages on WML, Automake and Autoconf was, well, esoteric but kind of cool when I made it work. After working with it for a bit, I'm starting to change my mind. WML is pretty cool in itself, although the syntax and things is pretty heinous. But Autoconf and Automake for this job? Hm. Not so sure. It breaks in strange ways (well, strange for people who aren't familiar with it), and the amount of trouble I had to go through to set it up so I could start working on the pages makes me skeptical to whether or not I can count on anyone else to do work on this. Oh, well.

Going to meet up with several old friends here in Norway tomorrow, should be good. Also remembered that I should write some stuff on the Peer Press list, someone actually emailed me in private about it. Will try to do that today.

Crimz wants to write a movie script. His idea is actually pretty good, and it's plausible to write and produce with the equipment we have at work. Write up another project for our copious free time. God help us all.

Norway is so cold. Between that and the speed of this modem, I'm starting to remember why I left for Mexico in the first place. Oh, well, another week and a half, and I'm going back to Mexico City.

Back from GUADEC, and reasonably well from the food poisoning I contracted while there, too. With the exception of that mishap, and the day I lost because of it, GUADEC was great. Many thanks to Mathieu and the other French guys for arranging it, I had a lot of fun and met a lot of really nice people.

Seems I'm going to be doing some GNOME website work while I'm on my holiday here in Norway, should be good. Got a chance to talk a bit to Raph about the Peer Press stuff, no conclusions, but at least we're thinking along the same lines, so something should be possible in the next few weeks.

At work, it seems all is going well without me, as I suspected it would. Our VC stuff has finally come through, which means I'll be coming back to Mexico to a steady, well, steadier, salary and more organization, amongst other things. Also, the ability to work more full-time on development of Conglomerate and other things should be insured. Much happiness.

Hans Petter and Robert are doing stuff with Conglomerate, looks like that's speeding up tremendously. I like that a lot, perhaps we'll have code to show sooner than we thought. GUADEC gave us a lot to think about when it came to Bonobo integration, so most probably we're going to make large-scale components from Conglomerate, and conversely use Bonobo components for a lot of compound editing. This is going to be great.

Norway is cold, as usual.

I've done it again. It's 3:40 AM, and I've been awake since 6 PM a day and a half ago. That's 34 hours. The hallucinations are creeping up again. I think I'll go and sleep now.

The Peer Press mailing list (which I stupidly used the wrong URL for earlier) seems to be picking up speed. Now to convince people that HTTP is not a magic bullet, and get working on the prelim spec for the DTD.

Hans Petter is still tied up in marginally revenue-generating work, but at least there's light at the end of the tunnel. Specifically, the Monday end of the tunnel, which is when we're supposed to deliver. I might be crazy, but it looks like it's on track for then. He's been toying with some cool genetic algorithm stuff on his breaks, I notice. Could also be very cool.

Paid the advance on our GUADEC tickets today. We're going to be in Norway from the 20th of March to the 10th of April too. If any Norwegian free software hackers want to meet (preferably in Oslo), tell us. We'll also be arriving in Paris on the 15th, so there's a spare night where we'll be doing nothing formalized. Any others going to be there that night?

My God, it's full of stars. Or wait, that's sleep dep again.

It seems I wasn't the only one who thought it was possible to do better things than Slashdot. The article I posted got lots of great response, and today I set up a mailing list for discussing where to go next. I have no doubt something like this could make Slashdot largely irrelevant. The interesting question is, could it be an arbiter of change in the larger frame of things, like traditional press? I've thought about this a lot, and the scary bit is, I can't see why it couldn't be. Not seeing any faults is usually a warning sign that you're not looking hard enough, but I don't know. We'll see what happens.

Work rolls on. Our hunt for investment is coming to an end soon, I think, and with the outcome we wanted. Nothing certain yet, of course, but I'm hopeful.

I'm starting to really look forward to GUADEC. I feel like I know so many of these people, now I need to meet them in the flesh. I suspect much late-night discussion will happen.

Reading the /. thread attached to the GNOME development roadmap article, I realize the reason I bother is the same reason people watch autopsy photos, or The Jerry Springer Show; sick fascination. And to think that back in 1997/98, I had a Slashdot habit that required me to check it at least 20 times a day...

Iain checked in some Loom code, it seems. I haven't had time to try to compile it yet, to see what it does, but I'm happy stuff is happening there.

Hans Petter seems to have gotten the Oracle crap under control, and Peter Murphy was most excellent last night. I didn't even know Mexico City had a goth community.

Read Raph's diary entry, in particular the part about commercializing web sites, and the principles behind Advogato, with great interest. My question to all this is, is it impossible to be "yet another IPO-track dot.com website" and still have great community, and not sell your soul? I think it is. Slashdot, for instance, didn't change much when they were commercialized. The overexposure killed them, because they didn't scale, but I think having money didn't make much of a difference in content. Maybe it made too little of a difference, since it seems they're all happy sitting on their ass with their IPO money now, and just post articles now and then. I'm getting more and more convinced something new is in order.

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