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Name: Ian Weller
Member since: 2008-07-01 00:34:58
Last Login: 2012-02-08 05:23:12

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Homepage: http://ianweller.org/


Intern at Red Hat and student at the University of Kansas.

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694 insertions, 1201 deletions, 0 visible changes

[ianweller@hovercraft fedora-business-cards]$ git diff --stat 0afed4e HEAD
 INSTALL                                      |    4 +-
 MANIFEST.in                                  |    2 +-
 README                                       |   15 +-
 config.ini                                   |    4 -
 fedora-business-cards.spec                   |   28 +--
 fedora_business_cards/__init__.py            |   13 +-
 fedora_business_cards/common.py              |  104 ++++++++++
 fedora_business_cards/config.py              |   66 ------
 fedora_business_cards/exceptions.py          |   37 ----
 fedora_business_cards/export.py              |  144 ++++++++-----
 fedora_business_cards/frontend/__init__.py   |   26 +++
 fedora_business_cards/frontend/cmdline.py    |  236 +++++++++++------------
 fedora_business_cards/generate.py            |   60 ------
 fedora_business_cards/generators/__init__.py |   61 ++++++
 fedora_business_cards/generators/fedora.py   |  278 ++++++++++++++++++++++++++
 fedora_business_cards/information.py         |   64 ------
 pavement.py                                  |   45 +----
 templates/back-europe.svg                    |   76 -------
 templates/back-northamerica.svg              |   75 -------
 templates/back-overnightprints.svg           |   76 -------
 templates/front-europe.svg                   |  160 ---------------
 templates/front-northamerica.svg             |  152 --------------
 templates/front-overnightprints.svg          |  152 --------------
 templates/templates.ini                      |   17 --
 24 files changed, 694 insertions(+), 1201 deletions(-)

What changed?

  • Removed the Fedora Talk number (long overdue).
  • Removed fill-in-the-blank templates and added code to generate the SVG dynamically in Python. (This now lets us support any given business card size, with any given margin for professional printing.)
  • Changed the fonts to Cantarell and Comfortaa.
  • Made the business card generation modular so that you can create a non-Fedora business card with the same code that makes dynamic sizes and conversion to CMYK and PDF somewhat easier than doing it from scratch. (Feature request by Mel Chua, who told me she will write a Beefy Miracle module to test the new modularization support.)
  • Made palette-based RGB to CMYK conversion actually sane.
  • Various fixes.

Okay, so 1 visible change. I lied :)

What’s next?

  • Potentially moving things around on the Fedora card layout
  • Possibly renaming fedora-business-cards to something more generic due to its modularization
  • Actually making a new release so that people stop accidentally printing Fedora Talk information on their cards

Syndicated 2012-01-28 09:09:22 from Ian Weller’s blog » Advogato

What’s Ian doing this winter break?

My last final is tomorrow morning at 7:30 a.m., and I’ll be damned if I don’t find a way to procrastinate. This is my way of procrastinating.

Apart from my day-to-day stuff at Red Hat (making sure servers don’t catch fire, cleaning out spam traps, the like), I’m going to be working on a couple of projects over winter break.

FUDCon Blacksburg Booklet

Here’s the booklet pages from Tempe last year. We’re doing the same thing this year. It’s pretty much that simple.

What needs to be done:

  • Map needs rendered. I’m going to try to use mapnik instead of osmarender this year because mapnik looks a gazillion times better.
  • Recreate the schedule pages, possibly expanding the section to three pages (and moving the map into 1 page since we just don’t have that many things to label).
  • Find a bunch of local vendors close to campus, their contact information and when they’re open.
  • Figure out deets on a hack room and some other details that should go in the booklet.

The more things above that get done by volunteers, the less I have to do, and the more likely this booklet will be awesome. So please help if you’re bored! :)


I have a new pet project, and hopefully something will come out of it this time.

There are a lot of freely-usable fonts in Fedora that you can install with yum/PackageKit. But the problem is, it’s very difficult to figure out what the fonts look like without installing them all and trying them out. You can’t easily tell what fonts have serifs, have support for the language you’re trying to write in, or actually looks good.

fonts.fedoraproject.org is a proposed website that does the following:

  • Searches the yum repositories for a list of packages that provide font(*).
  • From that list, determine which packages have TTF or OTF files.
  • For each package, if the package is not cached, download the package and extract the fonts.
  • Write web frontend to put it all together, using @font-face technologies. The frontend would be static HTML that is rendered once nightly if there are updates.

I’ve discussed the idea above with a few folks in Infrastructure and it seems to have fallen on good ears, so I’ll be continuing on with this project when I’ve got some spare time over winter break. If you’ve got questions or just want to discuss fonts.fp.o, shoot me a message on IRC, since I’d love to get new ideas or figure things out that I haven’t quite figured out yet :)

Oh, and also:

Syndicated 2011-12-15 04:37:01 from Ian Weller’s blog » Advogato

never forget your towel

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has a few things to say on the subject of towels. A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitch hiker can have.

Today is Towel Day, an annual celebration on 25 May of Douglas Adams, his life and his works. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and all of Adams’ works, have a special place in my heart for their whimsical and chaotic prose.

Every now and then, I think about the hilariously unintuitive game that Adams wrote for Infocom, which shared the name of his popular trilogy but not too much of the plot. It’s still great to play, and it couldn’t be easier to play on Fedora.

You can install the package frotz, an interpreter for Infocom games and other Z-machine games, in most recent versions of Fedora (I seem to remember installing it back on Fedora 9). Then, you can download the Z-machine file from Adams’ website. After performing these steps, the magic incantation for playing the game is frotz hhgg.z3.

Don’t have Fedora and still want to play the game? There are plenty of frotz ports to other platforms, too. You can also play a graphical Flash (eew) version from an older page from BBC Radio 4.

As for me, I’ll be carrying a towel all day today.

Syndicated 2011-05-25 06:58:08 from Ian Weller’s blog » Advogato

SouthEast LinuxFest: Growth is a good thing

The first thing I noticed Saturday morning was that, in its second year, SouthEast LinuxFest has significant growth. Last year, there were enough booths for a single public space in a student union; this year, booth space was expanded to nearly every hallway used by SELF. I was amazed.

Hats off to the entire SELF team, especially David Nalley, the go-to guy for Fedora contributors by default, and Jeremy Sands, the speaker coordinator. Everybody did an amazing job at making the conference run very smoothly, all things considered. :)

Max and I drove down Friday morning to make it in time for a Docs/wiki hackfest. When I got there, we were talking about the main [[Docs Project]] wiki page; when we were done, we had reworked the join process for Docs. (Or, at least that’s what I can remember doing.)

After the speaker dinner that evening, Michael DeHaan and I skipped on the loud music party and went to go take pictures of Spartanburg. I got some interesting ones:

00128 00028 00076 00063 00152 00097 00087

Saturday I went to go see a couple talks and gave one of my own on the datanommer project. About half the people were Red Hat/Fedora people, which is fine, but the other half were people who I had not seen before. That’s good — somebody outside of Fedora is interested. That’s pretty much the whole point on presenting it outside of a FUDCon. ;)

On Sunday, we had FAD @ SELF, and I think we got a few new people interested in contributing back to Fedora. Awesome!

Overall, I think it was a good weekend, and I’ll be waiting for SELF next year. :)

Syndicated 2010-06-15 11:39:32 from Ian Weller’s free software blog » Advogato

datanommer: Making Fedora metrics more transparent

I kind of surprised myself when I realized I hadn’t blogged about this yet. I talked about it with Max, I talked about it with folks in #fedora-infrastructure, and I’m giving a talk at SELF that circles around this very project.

The Fedora Project, from the beginning of its collection of statistics surrounding itself, has been open and transparent about the numbers we get and how we get them.

There’s just one problem with that: a lot of the actual raw data isn’t publicly available.

Of course, we don’t want to go about publishing raw httpd access logs to public locations. We don’t want everybody to be able to see the IP addresses that visit fedoraproject.org. But we do want people to be able to come up with a number for themselves that answers questions like “how many distinct IP addresses visited fedoraproject.org between January 4 at 4:32 a.m. and February 2 and 6:28 p.m.?” without giving access to our log servers to everybody.

Or, even if the data is publicly available, it’s difficult to get that data because the application doesn’t provide an API of sorts (Mailman, for example). Writing a screen scraper for Mailman is non-trivial.

What if there was a central API that held raw data about the everyday activity of the Fedora community?

I plan to write that. And it shall be called “datanommer.” It’ll use the TG2 stack, at the request of Infrastructure, and, although it will be designed around Fedora’s existing infrastructure, will be agnostic so that other free software projects can use it right out of the box.

Here’s a quick summary of how it’ll work.

  • Applications that already make log files will have those transferred to our log servers by normal means. Applications that don’t already make log files will either use an extension, module or the like to write a log file, or an external script will create a log file, which will then be transferred to the log servers.
  • A cron job will populate a database used for datanommer based on those log entries.
  • The TG2 front end of datanommer will provide a RESTful API to access the data in the database. Applications that provide data and what data they provide to datanommer will be automatically documented for maximum usability.

At first glance, this may seem like a lot of hoops just to get some data. But here’s some reasons we’re doing it this way, specifically:

  • Less load on the app servers. If we programmed datanommer to collect data from each application about once per hour, the app servers and databases would be under somewhat heavy load while that data is generated.
  • If datanommer is down for some reason, it doesn’t matter, because data entry is done directly to the database.
  • If the database is down for some reason, it doesn’t matter. The cron job will just wait another hour to populate the databases.
  • If the log servers are down for some reason, it doesn’t matter. Logs are generated locally on each app server, much like httpd. The log servers will go through and pick up the logs when they get around to it.
  • If the applications are down for some reason, they won’t be generating any data anyway, so it doesn’t matter. :)

For the end-user, accessing the data will be extremely easy. Since a REST API is just based on query parameters, you don’t have to be an expert to download data. It’ll be encoded in JSON so it’s easy to use in any language (especially Python, the lingua franca of Fedora Infrastructure.)

Of course, your thoughts about this process are definitely wanted. You can comment on this blog post to leave your suggestions.

Syndicated 2010-06-10 18:55:02 from Ian Weller’s free software blog » Advogato

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