Older blog entries for knipknap (starting at number 93)

Interior Wall Design

Since I am toying with the idea of buying a new flat, I am currently looking through interior design ideas. I will collect some of what I discover on this blog. I am hoping to find an industrial building that I can turn into a loft, so the obvious place to start is the design of the walls.

I love looking through such pictures.

Syndicated 2009-06-26 22:01:49 from Debain.org

Inform 7

Damn, Inform 7 is a truly impressive piece of software. Knowing how hard it is for software to understand the human language, the explanation in the “syntax error” message boggles my mind.

Syndicated 2009-06-22 15:55:50 from Debain.org

19 Feb 2009 (updated 19 Feb 2009 at 00:44 UTC) »

Introducing Nanny

I have created something new in the last few days - although the application is very young, I have been working on the backing components for a much longer time. It is one of those times where a long period of tedious work finally turns into something useful.

Nanny is currently a terminal with a powerful integrated desktop wiki. However, Nanny is also a starting point for creating a powerful workflow application for the GNOME desktop. Let me walk you through some screenshots. At first glance, the main window looks like a terminal:


However, after selecting a workflow…

Selecting a workflow

…something is different. Yay, a wiki-style workflow appeared!

Main window showing a workflow

You may edit this workflow in a very simple editor with all the features of a wiki, but none of the pain of wiki markup language. Here is the editor:

Editing a workflow

Linking to other workflows is easy, and of course you also get to view older revisions. I am particularly proud of the annotation feature, because implementing that properly with all the load/restore magic was a serious pain in the ass.

The future

While Nanny is currently clearly terminal-centric, this is just the beginning. I am planning to gradually make the terminal optional, replacing it by workflows that may kick start other scripts. I will also add more “active” features where you have a workflow with an actual state, and where different wiki pages are combined into one higher-level workflow. In short, this application should evolve into a general purpose workflow application.

Syndicated 2009-02-18 23:37:21 from Debain.org

Using Federico’s plot-timeline Script With PHP

I am currently trying to profile a PHP application, so I tried to find a way to create a call graph. Since I didn’t want to strace() the entire Apache process (which probably wouldn’t have worked anyway) I remembered a posting that showed how to do it with Mono. So this still depended on strace, but since I liked the plot-timeline.py script from Federico’s performance-tools, I decided to simply fake some strace output.

If you need to do the same, try the following:

  • Add this file to your PHP application.
  • Add some code similar to this:
    $tracer = new CallTracer('/tmp/trace.log');
    function trace($_comment = '') {
      global $tracer;
  • Sprincle trace() calls accross your source code.
  • Pass the resulting file to plot-timeline like this:
    python plot-timeline.py -o graph.png /tmp/trace.log
  • The result looks something like this:

    Syndicated 2009-02-07 23:02:49 from Debain.org

    Announcing: Freech now has a homepage!

    Seeing the freshmeat beta page inspired me to do some web design, and after a few hours of hacking the Freech homepage is born!

    (click on the image to go to the homepage)

    Syndicated 2009-01-24 13:37:15 from Debain.org

    Announce: Freech 0.9.18

    The last release of Freech is only two weeks ago, but there have been such a huge number of improvements that already here is the followup. Some of the new features include:

    Multi-forum support and a completely new front page (that may optionally be skipped if you are using only one single forum):

    The new front page

    The design of the forum has been simplified and optimized for smaller screen resolutions. A lot of detail has been put into making the looks of different forum pages more consistent, leaving a much cleaner overall impression. In addition, all pages are now XHTML1.0 (strict) compliant.
    Many other details were polished: Line wrapping in postings works even better, “breadcrumbs” (the path pointing to the current page) are shown on every page, video links are optionally embedded into posting, and a lot more.

    The simplified design of the forum

    A lot of work went into improving the administration features. Activities of moderators are logged on a dedicated page, and moderators may now lock/unlock other users. Spam handling and detection was greatly improved.

    The forum renders a lot faster by allowing the browser to cache more pages. As usual, a large number of bug fixes is also included in the release.

    Special thanks to Mario Deck for doing a lot of the work to make the forum XHTML1.0 strict compliant.

    Project page
    Full changelog

    Syndicated 2009-01-23 15:01:16 from Debain.org

    Release: SpiffWarehouse 0.2.0

    SpiffWarehouse is a Python module for storing objects in a filesystem in a revisioned manner. While I do not recommend using it currently because the API is plain evil, it is a required dependency of some of my other projects, so here is the release nonetheless.

    Project page: http://code.google.com/p/spiff-warehouse/
    Download: http://dl.debain.org/spiff_warehouse/
    API documentation: http://docs.debain.org/spiff_warehouse/index.html
    Handbook (PDF): http://docs.debain.org/spiff_warehouse/en/spiff_warehouse.en.pdf

    Syndicated 2009-01-11 21:40:17 from Debain.org

    Release: Bibshelf 1.6.0

    I am happy to announce the release of a new version of BibShelf 1.6.0, the book organizer for the GNOME desktop. This release is mostly a maintenance release that fixes gcc 4.3.2 compatibility and adds several translations.

    Special thanks go to all translators, including:

    da: Joe Hansen
    de: Samuel Abels
    es: David Lara
    fr: Nicolas Provost
    ga: Kevin Scannell
    id: Andhika Padmawan
    it: Marco Colombo
    ms: Sharuzzaman Ahmat Raslan
    nl: Mark Haanen
    nn: Eivind Ødegård
    rw: Steven Michael Murphy
    sv: Daniel Nylander
    vi: Clytie Siddall
    wa: Pablo Saratxaga
    zh_CN: YueGuang

    The updated release can be downloaded here:

    The project page is here:

    Syndicated 2009-01-11 21:24:52 from Debain.org

    Release: SpiffGtkWidgets 0.2.0

    SpiffGtkWidgets is a collection of Gtk widgets (currently a calendar and an annotated text view) for Python. This release comes with a number of bugfixes and with an improved installer.

    Project page
    API documentation
    Handbook (PDF) (incomplete)

    Syndicated 2009-01-10 20:16:43 from Debain.org

    Release: SpiffIntegrator 0.2.0

    SpiffIntegrator is a small but powerful package manager for adding plugin support to Python applications. This release works with Genshi 0.5, and improves the build infrastructure to make it a lot easier to install.

    Project page
    API documentation
    Handbook (PDF)

    Syndicated 2009-01-10 20:06:52 from Debain.org

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