Recent blog entries for kuro5hin

Haven't posted a diary in a whle, so I thought I'd update. I was reminded by a link from NTK to a Salon article on Advogato that I missed in all the hubbub earlier this summer. Nice writeup. Maybe they'll cover the K5 re-launch. ;-)

Speaking of which, K5 says we're 55:10:19 away from the big second. It'll be nuts, I know that. The summer continued to be ridiculous-- trip the Italy was fantastic. I didn't meet PJR after all, despite having made it to Venice and very nearly finding him. I gave up after getting (literally) yelled at by someone at his hotel's front desk. "I don't know how you get here!! You go ask someone else!! *click*" We didn't get the apartment described below, either. They decided they couldn't rent it yet, then we decided Noe Valley was a little too snooty for our tastes, and now we're in a crappy place in Lower Haight. Like the neighborhood, hate the apartment. We'll move eventually.

So the site comes back Monday morning. It's been way too long. I miss it terribly, and maybe I'll be able to sleep again when it's back online and humming.

Got up at 6:30 today, to move my car so it didn't get towed. Am tired. Must sleep now...

Well, thanks to everyone who sent me email, money, offers of help, and other encouragement. Things are decidedly looking up, finally. Sallgeud has committed the first anonymous-input-blocking changes, and others are working on various other improvements to Scoop to allow us to return.

And, even better news for me, we finally have an apartment! Bret found a place today, in Noe Valley on Army (~3 blocks from 24th St. if you're familiar with San Francisco). It's so nice. I think if we had described the perfect place for us, this is what we'd have come up with. Except that there's no laundry, but really, that's a minor drawback. Plus it'll all be refinished and refurbished before we move in. One bedroom, hardwood floors (to be refinished), back porch, separate entrance, on the corner of the building so lots of windows (even a skylight!), old cast-iron tub in the bathroom, and there'll be all-new appliances when we move in. The place just rocks.

So it's off to Italy for a real vacation, after all. Might be meeting up with pjr from gnu in Venice. And when we get back, we'll have a place to live, so I can get K5 back up, sooner than expected I hope. Also, August 15th, LinuxWorld Expo starts, and I'll be there with all the OpenSales folks, so stop by and say hi. I'm the skinny goofy-looking one with the 2-tone hair.

This is the most ridiculous summer I've ever had.

Writing this from the couch, watching that star trek movie with the Borg, waiting for Kozmo to bring Existenz. I'm a 21st Century Digital Boy. Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah.

Thanks mostly to Brent, I finally got some new Scoop code up on sourceforge. The rest of the dev services will be up by monday. Then other people can start writing code too! Yay! :-)

Oy. K5 got slashdotted today. 17,172 hits and counting. Normal traffic is around 4,000 hits per day. So, someone's (I think it was raph's) theory that slashdotting drives about triple your normal traffic in looks to have been about right (i.e. normal 4,000 hits + (4k * 3) == 16,000). A little higher in this case. Also created almost 100 new accounts. I sure hope those people are voting on stories. :-)

It was touch and go, server-wise for a while. Then I finally got Apache::Scoreboard to compile right, and Apache::Watchdog::RunAway to work properly again. And not a moment too soon. Been solid as a rock since then. I tell you, Stas Bekman has saved my freaking life with that module. I still don't know what's making apache hang intermittently, but at least it can't multiply indefinitely and take the server down anymore. If I ever meet the guy, I'm buying him a beer (maybe at YAPC!).

I ought to remember to write here more often. :-)

Weird, draggy week. I've had a cold that's kept me functional, but irritable and unpleasant to be around all week. I read Microserfs yesterday, and got all depressed about what the hell we think we're doing. Are any of us really creating anything, or is it just dead media? I don't know. Talked to Chris about it some, but we didn't reach any conclusions.

We hired a new coder this week. He's young, but smart. We'll see how I do as a "mentor" type person. We also had big company meetings Friday and Saturday, and are probably splitting the company up into a bunch of little companies, under the Intes Holdings umbrella. More "we'll see" about how this will go, or if it will ever happen.

Weird thing last night. I was in bed reading, and I felt kind of hungry, but not really for real food. Just a gnawing stomach emptiness. I was poking around in the freezer, looking for something that I could eat, and my eye fell upon the pile of freezee pops. Something just clicked, and I ate about a half dozen of them. Two minutes later, I could literally feel the sugar coursing through my body. God, it felt good. I must have been seriously sugar-deprived. It totally cheered me up, too. I felt about a thousand times better. Blood chemistry's strange that way, huh? I wish we all had some kind of bodily /proc filesystem, that would tell us when we were low on, say, freezee-pop.

[rusty@brain]$ cat /proc/blood_chem
003% freezee_pop
060% caffeine
040% vitamin_c
... etc. :-)

April Fools. :-)

Well, I've taken some time off from Scoop, to get a perspective on things, and I'm going to try to delve again tonight. Of course, we have no hot water (and thus no heat either), so it's *freezing* in here right now, so I might not so as not to damage my icy cold hands.

In other news, Chris has pointed out my dissing of Guinness, so before someone hunts me down and bombs me, I thought I should explain. My point was really just that Guinness is what Americans think of as "stout," and, also, generally, as "the best stout there is" and it is neither. Well, ok, it is stout, and air-pulled by someone who knows what they're doing, it's a damn fine stout. I would choose Guiness over 98% of other beers in a heartbeat. But most of the people who think Guinness == stout are suffering the same delusion as those who think Vie De France serves a fine croissant. Sure, they're not bad croissants, but go to any little village bakery in France, and you'll see the true wonder and glory that is the *real* croissant. I feel the same way about Guinness stout vs. Murphy's stout. Guinness seems fine, until you've had yourself a Murphy's. Then, suddenly Guinness seems kind of watery and weak, and you find yourself yearning for a beer with a little body and muscle to it. That's all. And I believe this fulfills the have an opinion about beer portion of the interview, as well. :-)

And now for something completely different. I was amused to find that my parents attended my online St. Pat's party. Will wonders never cease.

Argh!

Ever have one of those times when it feels like everything you code both fails to work *and* breaks a half dozen other things at the same time? I'm having that feeling right about now.

I'm trying to objectify a lot of the larger Scoop components, using CW's Collection objects, but it's really not going well. I'm seriously considering scrapping this plan and scaling back to just cleaning up the existing code, and doing something like a mini-Collection, which just returns data hashes (and does the nifty caching) rather than full-blown objects.

I don't know what the problem is. To all appearances, it's perfectly simple code, that should do exactly what it's supposed to. But I just can't get it to WORK! It's driving me up a freaking wall. I hate going to bed with less accomplished than I started with. But tonight, that's the way it's gonna be.

I'm starting to think perl is probably a bad choice for heavy-duty OO programming. Once you get past a certain level of complexity, perl's slightly wonky OO semantics start making it harder to do things, rather than easier. I keep hitting that point, repeatedly, and I think it's time to back off and take a smaller bite.

Ok, so The Rewrite has begun. scoop.kuro5hin.org will likely be really sketchy for a little while, since I'm doing some very heavy-handed editing. There's *so* much to fix... it really will end up looking like a total rewrite.

On the amusing side, I hacked up the Apache::Session::DBIStore module to accept an existing db handle instead of db connection parameters (so it'll work more smoothly with my object structure, and with Apache::DBI). A co-worker of mine did the same thing a few days ago, but I was busy and didn't pay attention, really. Turns out it was only a three-line fix (four if you count the closing bracket :-). Now I'm curious if he did it the same way I did. We usually code the same, and often down to choosing the same variable names and stuff. We'll see.

Tired now. Will probably get to continue on Scoop tomorrow and Tues. at work. :-)

Good God, am I tired. Worked something like 30 hours in the past two days, and I was sick the whole time. This is ridiculous.

The good news is, there's been some murmurings of interest in Scoop from various quarters. I think things may begin to accelerate on that front.

The big work deadline is tomorrow, so later this week I'll have some time to put in a bunch of little things people want, and make a proper release again.

Thanks to all of you who certified me. In the words of L. Fitzgerald Sjoberg, editor of The Brunching Shuttlecocks, "I'm touched and unnerved." :-)

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