Older blog entries for edd (starting at number 67)

Heavy duty sysadmin weekend. Moved my production web server over to Apache 2. All went well except for PHP4, which needed a little patching and to be compiled with the bundled pcre library, to avoid segfaults caused by some bug or other. I forgot what a bear it was to compile properly.

Also moved my mail server from exim3 to exim4. The main purpose of this was to get SMTP-time SpamAssassin going. Everything seems to be going well there. The Debian "conf.d" style of exim configuration makes a lot of sense once you get over the fear of its newness.

I've been using RT to track article lifetimes for XML.com. Overall I'm very happy. The big shame is that to get custom reports you really need to go right into coding, so I've got to set some time aside to investigate that.

In other news, I'm getting a little behind on my Debian packaging work, so I'll have to put some time aside for that this week.

jamesh, raph: thanks for getting those RSS fixes in so quickly!

23 Jul 2003 (updated 23 Jul 2003 at 11:34 UTC) »

Jolted by the work I've just been doing with RSS and Dashboard, I've been looking at the RSS provided by Advogato for my diary. The idea is I will link all the RSS files I generate from the <head> section of my blog using the <link rel="alternate" title="RSS" ... > mechanism, so that when browsing it with Dashboard enabled, I get not only my personal blog, but also my Advogato entries and O'Reilly weblog showing up too.

So, the Advogato RSS: it's a nice start, but there are one or two quirks.

The first is that the <title> element is missing. This is a mandatory element. Obviously Advo has no concept of title in diary elements so something like "Diary entry from edd on Mon, 16 Jun 2003" would do. But something is needed. Secondly, all the values of the <link> element are all the same, I suspect this is just a simple programming error.

(Being a purist, I have longer-term misgivings about cramming escaped HTML into the <description> field, but I am largely at war with common [ab]usage on that one.)

In hiding

Busy having too much fun to remember to write about. Recent work includes uploading new versions of bluez-sdp, epiphany-browser to Debian. I'm insanely obsessed with Dashboard. Splashing around with Mono is fun, I managed to find a test case for a race condition in the runtime the other day. It's nice that newbies like me can play.

7 Jul 2003 (updated 7 Jul 2003 at 11:39 UTC) »

A big update, for which I apologise...

O'Reilly Open Source Convention

I'll shortly be heading off to Portland for the O'Reilly Open Source Convention. As an aid to myself and other attendees I've set up, together with Dave Beckett, a publicly logged and "chumped" IRC channel on irc.freenode.net, channel #oscon.

The chump bot produces a collaborative weblog from IRC chat. We used one of these for the WWW2003 community coverage site to great effect -- participants could share URLs and comments relevant to the talk in real time as with any chat, but the results are preserved in a web site.

It's my hope that anyone either finding or creating web pages relevant to OSCON goings-on will drop into the channel and add their URLs to the list. The site's also available for syndication via RSS.

I'm sure there will be many ways people will use web technology to cover the conference, and there's probably not going to be "one true" IRC channel. I offer this channel and service in the knowledge it'll be handy for me personally, and the more people who want to contribute, the better! More at oscon2003.xmlhack.com.

Dashboard, Mono, .NET, and PowerPC

Nat Friedman's Dashboard got me interested in finding out more about Mono and friends. I've reported my findings in full on this morning's weblog entries, but here's a brief summary: Mono is cool, but doesn't work on PowerPC Linux; it's easy to play with Dashboard, and I extended my Phone Manager GNOME applet to send Dashboard clues; shame I can't write .NET applications in Python.

GNOME Bluetooth

I got my GNOME CVS account over the weekend, and checked libbtctl in already. I'll be moving all of my GNOME bluetooth tools over there shortly.

To facilitate opening up development of these tools, I created the gnome-bluetooth mailing list.

7 Jul 2003 (updated 7 Jul 2003 at 11:40 UTC) »

This space unintentionally left blank

30 Jun 2003 (updated 30 Jun 2003 at 16:03 UTC) »

The time has come to put GNOME Bluetooth into the GNOME CVS. It's accumulating users now, and Red Hat are looking at packaging it. As a result, people want changes. I can't keep up with them, so it's time to get more folk involved. Besides, a lot of the code is quite crufty so I need the help of others to beat it into shape. Anyway, I sent off a request for a GNOME CVS account, so we'll see....

Packaged epiphany 0.7.1 for Debian unstable today. Happily, I was able to close 11 bugs with this upload. Epiphany's heading towards stability now, it's good to see.

Behind the Times -- I've finally bowed to pressure and started my own weblog. I had various places where I wrote before (I've had a weblog at O'ReillyNet since 2000), but none that I "owned." Despite my misgivings about the blogging world at large, weblogs have undeniably become a forum for getting your opinions and ideas heard. Various friends have reacted well to my new site, so I suppose for now I'm doing the right thing.

I'll try hard to continue posting stuff related to open source and hacking here, though. In that vein, a few words about setting up my weblog. I used Zope, which I use for all of the usefulinc.com site. There's a neat product called BlogFace, which takes content you already have stored and catalogued and puts a blog-like interface on top of it. That suits me down to the ground -- I don't want to get my content locked into only one system or presentation method. With a little hacking, BlogFace has proved very suitable indeed.

16 Jun 2003 (updated 16 Jun 2003 at 10:29 UTC) »

Here at GUADEC until Wednesday morning.

Last week I made a nifty hack for sending email into my ZWiki installation. I often find myself writing email with ideas I want to preserve, or point other people to at a later date, and unfortunately you can't rely on mailing list archives, they tend to come and go.

You can find the hack here: EmailToZWiki. I used the 'log' field of ZWiki to put the first 150 or so characters of the mail -- this can then be extracted via an RSS feed, like this one from my wiki. (Googling for 'RSS and ZWiki' yields reasonable results for adding RSS to ZWiki, as long as you figure out you need to Catalog-enable your ZWiki.)

I used WebDAV to get the content into my ZWiki. You need to have a trivial PUT_handler in your ZWiki to make it set the type of new documents properly. Again, Google is your friend here.

One day, it'll be simpler :)

58 older entries...

New Advogato Features

New HTML Parser: The long-awaited libxml2 based HTML parser code is live. It needs further work but already handles most markup better than the original parser.

Keep up with the latest Advogato features by reading the Advogato status blog.

If you're a C programmer with some spare time, take a look at the mod_virgule project page and help us with one of the tasks on the ToDo list!