Older blog entries for lkcl (starting at number 275)

22 Apr 2006 (updated 22 Apr 2006 at 17:50 UTC) »

fucking-piss!!!!! bought a new laptop (fujitsu p1510d) and because i hate windows, i didn't boot in to it - just PXE-boot-installed debian (from hands-free - http://hands.com/d-i).

of course, the radio-rom isn't enabled, and there's no way to enable it from linux, so i fucking have to install fucking windows FUCK i hate windows.

[one more hour of my life wasted on windows so far]

[update] awwww xxxxit some more - it's a switch on the right-hand-side of the unit. i just trashed my lovely near-perfect setup only to find that there wasn't a problem :)

god i hate windows :)

well, i like mod_python so much i had to write an article about the web technologies i'm using. hurrah.

20 Apr 2006 (updated 20 Apr 2006 at 17:56 UTC) »

well, i haven't had much that i can write about, because i've been working. but i recently had some time available to start a project, and i started out with zope (which is what i am developing with at work) and within three days made a decision to abandon zope and use mod_python instead.

conversion - of the 1500 lines of python+templates i'd written up until then - was very simple and very quick, by virtue of having stuck to some guidelines:

1) for god's sake don't use anything in dtml except dtml-if (which should be a true-false test only), dtml-else, dtml-var (which should be simple variables only) and dtml-in.

DO NOT, under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, use dtml-call or any kind of complex mapping.

2) anything complex is done by a python function, which _explicitly_ calls a variable (an instance of an HTMLFile) manually passing in the REQUEST dictionary and some additional keywords via **kwargs or named parameters:

    contents of index_html_file.dtml:
< html >
< title > <dtml-var "title">
< body > stuff < / body >
< / html >

def index_html(self, REQUEST): """ comment to keep zope happy """

return self.index_dtml_file(self, REQUEST, title='Hello')

by following these simple rules, i was able to install python-htmltmpl, and quite literally do a global search/replace on dtml-in with TMPL_LOOP, dtml-var with TMPL_VAR - you get the idea.

i've since investigated SQLObject/SQLBuilder, formencode, mod_python and htmltmpl, and ... i can't imagine ever doing, by choice, web programming with anything else.

ooo. eee. oww. i ache like a *****!

i decided to go skating again. it's been over five years since i dropped into a half-pipe. before last week, it had been three years since i went on ice, and before last month, i think i went on skates about eight times in three years.

sooo... let me see... i went skating in a blizzard at night, two weeks ago: the nice police officer wasn't too happy with me and he also demonstrated a total lack of knowledge of skating by saying that not having a brake is dangerous, and that being a 20mph pedestrian - on the pavement - is safer.

the fastest i, personally, have ever been on skates, is probably around aboouuut.... 50 mph. it was on "silver hill", on the athens to atlanta skate marathon. i'd heard about this hill: i specifically asked how long it was (about 1 mile) and it has places where it's a 1-in-4 gradient.

now, i figured that i'd be going nearly 40mph, so i did the maths, and worked out that i'd be counting to 90.

at around a count of 70, i hit the 1-in-4 gradient part and jeeezus: to feel the wind rushing _that_ fast past your ears, down a hill, trusting the marshalls to have cleared the road with your friggin life what a RUSHHH!


that was seven years ago.

so i've been out in the past two months about once every two-to-three days.

then i discovered that the skating season is nearly over, and that there's an ice-rink one hour away by tram - i just _had_ to go. since sunday, i've been back four times. i'd never been on speed-blades before DANG they're scarily unstable until you get used to them and i'm _not_ used to them.

people whizzing past you in a train of 30 people, round the 300 metre track like you're standing still - you know they're doing over 30mph - it's such FUUNN!

oh, and last week, i went back to the UK to pick up my roces khuti's - and went down to the skate park i found hidden 400 metres from where i'm living.

i ended up in the bowl - it's about 12 metres across, and about... 1.5 metres deep... and i couldn't get out!!! i was SO not going to take my skates and pads off to get out. i'd have to take the pads off, because they're 6mm thick of pure polythene and they slide _really_ well against concrete :)

so my arms ache from pulling myself out. four times. my back aches from jarring it badly when i landed on one knee with my upper leg _straight_ rather than bent at the hip, i have a cut on my hand because idiots smash bottles around the area, not to mention the usual leg and lower-back muscle overexertion i keep pulling.

it's great! i'm going back tomorrow :) okay. mayyybe just to play on the 2 ft ramps.

how odd.

the sun is shining beautifully in through my window, and it highlights the snowflakes going past near-horizontal down the street...

12 Feb 2006 (updated 12 Feb 2006 at 21:44 UTC) »

I write poems, if anyone's interested. As I don't have access to my server at home right now, advogato will have to do.


Echos.  Heart-felt.
Mind reeling with every hit.
Memories.  Loves-lost.
Intensity reduced not a bit.

Flowers and circles. Games we played. Laughter and pleasure In every stride.

I loved you. and you. and you.

Turning over again, Memories lost not a bit: I loved you, even for a day.

Michael the fish. The book I borrowed. Never returned because I could not...

But I loved you. And your silly fish. You gave me hope. and a book.

My head beats with every unchecked memory. I crash to ground Every time a hit...

You have no idea. So long gone...

A dance, a wave. A pretty smile. We move together, so well...

I loved you. and you. and you.

So many memories. So many beautiful poignant memories.

My head hurts. I loved them all. Taken away. I loved them. ow. I..

Copyright (C) 2006 Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton.
12 Feb 2006 (updated 12 Feb 2006 at 14:27 UTC) »

ahh, this is quite amusing. i am having to use lynx because i am in the process of deleting x11 and everything that depends on it (kde, gtk - the list is about 400 packages) because of xxxxing mozilla 1.5 (see earlier diary entry) i'm removing testing and unstable from dpkg, then installing xserver-xfree86 again. the hope is to get the x11 dev stuff from "stable" back again so i can at least do superkaramba builds again. a bit drastic, i know...

update: well... it looks okay... by that i mean to say that i have firefox, fvwm, xfree86 and um.... well, that's about it. everything else is gone - kde, xine, rdesktop, gtk... anything that depended on libx11-6 :)

i didn't like openoffice bloatware _anyway_...

advogato definitely getting weird :)
oh, wait, damn - i'm one of the contributors argh argh
they're coming for me [BANG, BANG] runawaaaay! :)

7 Feb 2006 (updated 7 Feb 2006 at 07:52 UTC) »

the reason why a company with billions doesn't fix their stuff is this:

1) even a company that spends $10m with them on licensing, that's still less than 1% of their income.

2) they profit already: why should they care?

3) you are nothing to them: and your voice is one amongst millions that, if they listened, would cost them an amazing amount of time and money to even pick up the phone or look at the screen (you only have to look at bugzillas for the larger projects to get an inkling on this...)

4) they know you have to have interoperability, and they claim to be able to offer it: unbelievably, people lap that up.

all-in-all, it's am amazingly dis-empowering situation.

what makes it _worse_ is the "oh everyone has it so i gotta have it" delusion.

microsoft software has set personal computing back by FIFTEEN YEARS.

roozbeh, it only takes a few skilled and trained activists to whip up mob rule... they won't be the ones getting physically hurt, either.

i love firefox. recently i upgraded into what must be the windows-equivalent of dll-hell.

i run a debian testing/unstable system - i just can't stand not having _some_ idea of what's out there other than what the latest debian/stable stuff says is "good".

i like the fact that a debian/unstable system has got rid of the hotplug package altogether: udev now takes over its role, with a drastic increase in boot times.

i doubt whether depinit's boot-times will be beaten, though (about 5 seconds to a console login prompt).

but anyway - i digress.

i upgraded firefox, recently (couple months back). all fixed-width fonts went white-on-white.

"can you show me the source of the file so i can see more clearly what's causing the problem?"

"no, can't do that because view-source shows stuff white-on-white" :)

so i eventually decided today to try upgrading some of the dependencies. that did the trick.

by upgrading most of the x libraries to 6.9.0-dfsg.1_4 and also the xfs _and_ libfreetype, _eventually_ some voodoo combination of what i did made the problem take a hike.

interestingly, though, half-way through the upgrade process i decided to try firefox again: the fixed-width white-on-white boxes had been replaced with little black squares per character, which led me to believe that i was on the right tracks, and try to upgrade some of the dependencies-of-dependencies-of-firefox (focussing on those ones down the xlibs and fonts route)

voila, as if by magic...

mozilla-browser's habit of pulling me to the "new" tab when asking a link to be opened in a new tab was beginning to piss me off. _not_ to mention working with two-year-old bookmarks and cookies UGH :)

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