Older blog entries for bjf (starting at number 224)

1 Jul 2003 (updated 1 Jul 2003 at 14:39 UTC) »

This is a personal diary entry; one of these days, I'll set up a proper blog.

Vale the Fez

Today was a bad day for my family in general, and Errol the Feral in particular. Fez was much less an adorable drooling retard of a two year old male tabby cat, than a member of the family, albeit a handicapped one :-). Mum fondly referred to him as her 'special needs cat', alluding to her own job as a teacher specialising in special education.

Errol had to be put down after a brief but nasty illness which painfully constricted his airways and defied all treatment. The little fleabag will be sorely missed :-/

Karate

I passed a grading after another 15 months. I'll have my work cut out even if I redouble my efforts to make my next grade. I'm got a nice rainbow going on my tie rack now.

Hacking

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. All work...

mbp: regarding Python generators. Python shortly won't be alone in being the only major language providing yield/iterators: C# is getting them along with a bunch of other goodies like real generics and anonymous methods (MSDN article). Microsoft haven't delivered yet, but the Mono people beat them to the punch by adding iterators to a recent release.

As for me, as usual, the closest thing to hacking I've been doing is working on a paper my colleagues at work wrote.

Hacking

I learnt of the httpmail protocol, a bastard undocumented WebDAV variant that basically does the same thing as IMAP. Apparently, Outlook Express uses it for it's "HTTP" mail method that allows it to pull mail off Hotmail.

I downloaded the Fetchmail sources and have spent a bit of time investigating whether it's possible to integrate httpmail support into the client so I can grab all my mail in one hit. It should sure beat the hell out of using some lame-ass screen scraping script to recover my Hotmail.

If I do get this thing built, I might simply maintain a separate patch from the Fetchmail sources (a quick browse of fetchmail-friends turned up a bunch of posts infested with techie/OSS arrogance). Once I wrap my head around it, I'll hack some code and report some more on it.

I have little sympathy for people who complain about paying taxes. Not only is it completely fucking cliche, they are probably people with the least appreciation of the civilising influence of government. Governments are an annoyance to the rich and powerful fucking everyone else around them, but are literally a lifeline to the poor, at-risk and vunerable. People who believe it's their right to get rich and not give back to the society that facilitated their wealth are, in my humble opinion, the moral equivalent of fresh dogshit.

"I like to pay taxes. With them I buy civilization."

-- former Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

20 May 2003 (updated 20 May 2003 at 16:25 UTC) »
Hacking

My time management skills suck, but I'm trying to find practical ways to make more efficient use of my time and arrange more time to do some hacking.

One experiment I would like to try is to start coming into work an hour early and allow myself a little time to hack on something that I find personally interesting and which might be useful for work. I'm hoping this would be a good strategy to get myself in the right mindset each morning and hopefully improve my productivity overall. I'll start once I can manage a full night of sleep :)

Lately, I've been having some interesting issues with some interesting and difficult people. One guy seems to have this 'Cable Guy' complex where after speaking with me for fifteen minutes, believes he's my best friend. I don't know about you guys, but I find this a little disconcerting.

Speaking of difficult people, I could tell you all all sorts of lurid recent stories about Furries, freeloaders, people who won't shower, guys who like rough trade, etc etc. But I won't. This is a family show, right?

Stuff

I turn 25 on the 3rd, so I'm starting to feel a little older. At any rate, it's a pretty good excuse for a party :)

I'm pondering doing a photo-essay of my local area (West End) for my own amusement, but I think I'll need to plan my run in detail beforehand and arrange to have the means to get the images scanned.

lkcl

Not unlike fifty million other people, I believe that you're totally missing the point of playing with Open Source software. Remember that most OSS people hack because it's fun, because they're good at it, or a combination of both. Also remember that in capitalism, an object's worth is governed by how much people are willing to pay for it. Why should the world pay you for your work if it's not useful to them? Why does the world owe you a living? Notice how very few other people are whining about how unfair the world is for not giving them a living because they're so special and talented and genuises with multi-hyper-complexity and all that guff? I didn't think so.

mglazer

Just when we thought Mr Glazer was about to pull his head in and actually refrain from stirring the shit with his hateful rhetoric, he's at it again.

Dude, you're an idiot. There are plenty of other sites on the net for that sort of thing, and unlike Advogato, they're full of like-minded uneducated twits like you, where you'll actually fit in. Do you think that if you post enough crap, we'll start masturbating over Israel and hating Arabs as much as you? Seen your diary rating lately? File your crap in the appropriate forum, not here.

HUMBUG Talks

We've got a whopper of a talk lined up at HUMBUG this weekend: we got a guy in from Red Hat to come in and talk about internationalisation issues. Everybody seems to be as pleased as punch with it, but unfortunately, I'm going to be out of town so I get to miss all the fun :-/ Family has to come first, I suppose.

Advocacy

After attending my most recent Labor branch meeting, I has an interesting discussion with a guy who helps run a migrant support and advocacy centre here in inner Brisbane, catering especially for people of African origin. I mentioned in passing that I also was involved with HUMBUG and the discussion moved towards how I could possibly help out considering my background as an IT person and dabbler (dilettante?) in Open Source.

I think that increasing awareness of Open Source software here could do a hell of a lot of good, but I presently have no idea who exactly my target audience is and what exactly OSS can do to help these people considering my background. I have some starting points at least, so all is not lost.

Politics

I found it slightly amusing that the first Labor branch meeting I attended was on April Fools Day. I wonder if that is some sort of bad omen.

I quickly understood the old adage about politics being the ultimate challenge: I was struck by the energy, ability, knowledge and committment of the people I met. As it stands, for somebody like me without a background in student politics or a political science degree, I've just committed myself to a hell of a lot of learning and hard work.

Anti-Bush play withdrawn after director attacked. Now this is what I call a "chilling effect". I wonder with all the hypocracy in the world, how some people can sleep at night.
A case of the left hand not knowing what the Right hand is doing: Australia Councils grants $25,000 for development of game entitled "Escape from Woomera". I just love the irony.
HUMBUG Talks

Once again, at HUMBUG, we've got a pretty decent set of talks lined up. This weekend, we've tentatively scheduled bradm to talk about User-Mode Linux and VMWare. The meeting after that, we have our long awaited talk from a special guest from Red Hat in to talk about i18n issues. Additionally, we have a growing list of possibles and probables for talks.

I had some talks-related running-around to do today, but since I got slack today (I'm on holidays) it'll need to wait until tomorrow.

Hacking

I'm presently mucking about in Python prototyping some ideas I got a few weeks ago at work. It's a shame though that Python dosen't yet have .NET/Mono bindings yet (and I'm not quite sure how it would be done).

I'm also trying to work out how to get my Sun Ultra 10 sitting in the corner here to run a Samba PDC and eventually authenticate everything on my home network out of LDAP. Solaris 9 ships with Netscape Directory Server but I suspect that getting it all working won't be as simple as copying a couple of configuration files.

Fat Pizza

My friends here in Brisbane know that my current obsession is the Fat Pizza movie and TV series (when I can pick up SBS). If you like mind-searing amounts of gutter-level humour as much as I do, then you should check it out. I can't wait for the DVD :-)

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