Older blog entries for gilbertt (starting at number 20)

In an effort to put the evil lack-of-job related stress out of my mind, I coded for 17 hours straight today. I feel kinda fulfilled now, although I'm currently having trouble seeing. I got two complete apps written and a lot of hacking done on my long term projects. Here's what I ended up with:

scrot (SCReen shOT) is a commandline screen capture utility which uses imlib2. I wrote it from scratch as a handy alternative to ImageMagick's import command. It has the benefit of imlib2's dynamic image saver modules, meaning I support lots of image formats without much work. Plus I like the name ;-)

camE (continuing the funky naming tradition) is a v4l webcam grabber, using (can you guess?) imlib2. This means you can label your cam image using antialiased truetype fonts and blend them onto the image with transparency if you like. Lots of other features, like ftp or scp uploading and the ability to run as a daemon forever (no X connection needed). It's pretty fun and you can see the results on my webcam page.

Geist now has font styles (antialiased truetype fonts with shadows, outlines, blurs etc), a font style editor, a selection rectangle, half-written polygon code, a faster wordwrapping algorithim, and a slightly more optimised renderer.

Feh got some long needed luvvin' and I fixed a coupla little buglets that had been around for a while.

Got some work done on more of the backend libs we will need for Enlightenment's DR17 release. As some of you may know, this is a complete rewrite (see DR16's codebase for hints why ;-)) and so there is a lot to do. But using imlib2, evas and some of the other abstraction layers we are currently working on, e17 will be a wonderful thing. In maybe 2 years time ;-)

Anyway, I feel better for that. I put up snapshots of most of this stuff on my site, even some rpms (will make debs tomorrow) for people to check out. Now we have finally made a stable imlib2 release, I thought I may as well get some example apps out there for people to toy with.

Yesterday I took a look at Python. I have to say, I kinda liked it. The OO stuff is quite nicely implemented, and no matter how much source code I read, it always seems unusually readable... Now that's a nice feature. Plus the XML and ODBC modules are really, really nice to use. I might play some more.

Continuing my experimental mood, I also wrote a WAP/WML interface to my website. You can view it at http://linuxbrit.co.uk/wap/ if you have one of those fancy phones. I don't actually have such a phone, so I have no idea if my WML is clean, or even renders, but it looks good from here. The big plus is that I set it up to automatically generate from the meta language I write my site in, so it's no extra work to maintain. Super ;-)

At some point soon I'll start freaking out about the job thing, but today for the first time I appreciated the extra time I had for Open Source. Just wish I could keep a roof over my head and continue coding :-) I guess we all do though?

As my eyesight blurs and fades, I think I'll head off to bed.

Trying to put my life back together. Picking up the pieces, dealing, etc.

For legal reasons I still can't really talk about the reasons behind our closure. I'm sure you can all make a good guess though, huh?

There is some light at end of the tunnel. Lots of people have gone out of their way to help me find a new job. I have had help from unexpected sources, which was flattering, to say the least.

A couple of slim chances for next week. Great jobs which I am unlikely to get, after that I have to get less fussy.

The resume is up to date, and out there. I guess I have to sit back and hope now. Maybe brush off the suit too ;-)

It's times like this I really resent all this real life stuff and want to just curl up in a corner and code. It is a shame that even corners cost a lot to maintain in London, and a corner without a roof is no fun in winter ;-)

8 Oct 2000 (updated 8 Oct 2000 at 19:15 UTC) »

The really scary thing about taking the plunge from a steady, dependable, stable career in a stiflingly large corporate environment into the dynamism, involvement and whirling pool of instability that is a small startup is what happens when it all goes horribly wrong and you end up in the shit.

There is nothing worse in the world than being given something better than you ever expected, realising it is exactly what you wanted, where you wanted to be, and suddenly having it all taken away.

Well, maybe there is, but it hasn't happened to me. Yet.

Fucking useless uselessness.

aaronl: That's nothing. I just forked wget because it links with xlib. Oh wait. It doesn't. Duh!

So anyone coming to apachecon next month? I'll be there, my company has a stand (between Sun and IBM) and I'll be there showing off some web clustering and video streaming etc. Should be a lot of fun.

Oh, I'm all moved in to my new place in London now. It's really nice. I ate out at Waggamamma the other night. Awesome Japanese food. Really cool place.

Gonna join Lonix next week, they tend to meet in a pub in SoHo - London rocks :-)


I am sending an infiltrator to steal RMS's crack.

That way at some point we could maybe just get back to writing (and sharing) code, instead of having to get involved in politics and legality every time we sit down at a keyboard.

*shrug* oh well. On with life. I'm moving house on Thursday, gonna be in London by the weekend. Coolness.

New job starts next Monday. Woah.

Well, now I know how complex polygons got their name =P

I'm currently enhancing the drawing routines in imlib2. I have already added line and rectangle clipping, and polygon drawing. Right now I'm doing polygon filling, then polygon clipping and image blend clipping. It's really quite a lot of fun, if somewhat mind-bending...

Still, I always wanted to learn how to do this stuff, so it's great to play with

Hrm. Thinking about it, I have to do text clipping too. That should be fun, with antialiased truetype fonts to content with =P

So I found myself a flat in London. Small, but right next to Tooting Broadway tube station, so handy for work/town. I start my new job in 10 days. Argh!

I have 2 weeks to finish this drawing code, as imlib2 is gonna see a release soon. What with moving etc, that actually gives me about 3 evenings to do all this.

On that basis, what the hell am I doing here, writing this drivel?

*Off hacking

So. 4 weeks until I start my new job :-) I'm starting to get pretty nervous, but it's gonna be great.

For those who don't know yet, I'm gonna be Senior Consultant at ID-Pro, a UK startup of the solid German parent company.

Pretty exciting to be involved in something from the beginning, but nice to know there's a stable parent company behind it...

Currently looking for a flat in London. Eeesh. Scarce and expensive... I'll get there in the end, but I don't know if I'll sort something out in time.

Handed in my notice at my current job last week. Pretty tearful moment actually... I won't miss the work, but I'll miss the people. Lots. Especially the totally cute French chick I'd always hoped to end up with...

So geist (my new project) is coming along nicely. There are text, image and rectangle objects right now, all of which can be resized/dragged around and layered. The partial rendering engine is done, and pretty fast, even without any optimisation, so I'm pleased about that :-)

Today I wrote some code for saving documents. I've chosen XML as the file format. It's the right kind of structured hierarcial format for the needs of geist. Plus it's not binary, so humans can grok it and manipulate if necessary. The really cool thing about XML as a file format is that older geist versions will be able to load documents from newer versions, just by ignoring the stuff they can't grok.

The other reason I guess is that libXML is a cinch to use, and nice and fast and stable. It avoids all the nasty endianness and compatibility issues I would have had creating a binary format. Plus I loathe binary formats ;-)

Anyway the TODO list for geist is as long as my arm, and I still haven't put up a page for it or released an up-to-date snapshot. I should stop yip-yapping and go get on with it ;-)

If anyone knows anyone who's also starting at ID-Pro soon, put them in touch with me, as I'd love to meet 'em.

Woah. I finally did it. Goodbye non-IT job. Hello Linux job :-)

I'll say more when I sign the contract - but it's all good baby :-)

*Pauses to dance a little jig*


So. Bags are packed, I'm ready. I'll be in France on my hols all next week (I jump on the ferry tomorrow afternoon). Unfortunately I hear the weather sucks there right now...

Still, it's my birthday today, and it's also Bastille day (for the French), so I guess it's appropriate I head out there ;-)

I started writing something new last week, and now I hate to go away and leave it half-started. That always drives me crazy - lots of thoughts and no lappy to jot them down on...

It doesn't do anything yet, but it's gonna be a kindof object-based image/text layout thingummy - not desktop publishing standard, but for images/annotations/backgrounds etc...

We'll see how it unfolds. So far only the object model is in place, but it's pretty solid :-)

Now to mentally prepare myself for a week without PC/net access....

I'm rewriting my CV. Time to post it around a few places and try and make the science job -> IT job leap. I've been putting it off too long, but I can't afford to any more. There's no way BAT are paying me enough for what I currently do, no way in hell.

Besides, I quite fancy being paid to do what I love, it would be a nice change of pace :-)

Linux jobs in the UK are close to non-existent, so I guess I'll have to start with something more generic. Ho hum, I'll get there one day.

The hardest thing is trying to prove you are competent when you have no IT-related qualifications behind you. I have a lot of code behind me though, so hopefully that will count for something...

I'm currently rewriting feh's thumbnail mode to be far more useful, whilst simultaneously compiling CVS Xfree with a large collection of fairly insane optimisation flags. My flat got much warmer all of a sudden....

Some mates of mine are trying to set me up on a blind date with some 21 year old science graduate (she got a first-class degree, so she's smart!). She's apparently really nice, but I know nothing more about her. Being the shy, retiring type until I get to know people, the very idea of a blind date sends me into spasms, so I'm currently a mess of indecision trying to work out whether to agree to this...

I reckon I could charm her if I got my nerves under control, but every time I think about it, I see visions of Stan Marsh puking on Wendy Testaburger and break into a cold sweat...

Why can't all girls be like this?

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