Older blog entries for pabs3 (starting at number 41)

Importing GeoRSS feeds into TangoGPS

DebConf9 is getting closer so I was browsing the Internet and the DebConf9 wiki for information. When I'm travelling I enjoy having maps to be able to get around and not get lost. For DebConf8 I relied on TangogGPS with OpenStreetMap on my OpenMoko Freerunner since my laptop is fairly cumbersome and has relatively little battery life these days. For DebConf9 I'll probably do the same since navit doesn't seem too reliable for me yet. During my information gathering for DebConf9 I came across the DebConf9 map overlay and the Madrid free Wi-Fi map. I wanted to have these available in TangoGPS so I wrote a short python script to import them into the TangoGPS POI (points of interest) database. It requires the feedparser and beautifulsoup python modules. First download the GeoRSS feeds you are interested in and then run the script on the machines where you want to use TangoGPS with the filenames as arguments. It only handles points, not lines or polygons since TangoGPS doesn't allow that. Hopefully it will be included in TangoGPS upstream or the Debian TangoGPS package soon. If you want to update the feed you'll need to manually delete the relevant points from the database or remove and recreate the database and then import the feed(s) again.

Syndicated 2009-05-28 07:27:45 from Advogato

21 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:48 UTC) »

Going to DebConf!

I'm going to DebConf9!

I caught the end of a sale for international flights :D

Perth -> Dubai -> London Gatwick -> Madrid -> Cáceres.

Might be stopping in to see family in the UK and or other folks in Germany.

If any folks in London near Gatwick feel like lending a couch to a Debian developer on July 13th, please contact me.

Definitely looking forward to the debexpo hacking and deployment session, having fun with Debian games folks and seeing Debian folks again.

Syndicated 2009-04-21 07:27:45 (Updated 2009-04-21 08:08:47) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:49 UTC) »

Going to DebConf!

Going to debconf!

Finally got my shit together and got a flight to Argentina for DebConf!

Perth -> Sydney -> Auckland -> Buenos Aires -> Mar del Plata.

That is quite a bit of flying and a long bus trip ending quite early on the 4th. It will definitely be worth it if DebConf7 was anything to go on.

Hopefully by DebConf I can get my hands on an OpenMoko FreeRunner to do some Debian porting work during DebCamp and possibly mapping out the streets of Mar del Plata for OpenStreetMap. Of course I need to work on completing analysis of the results of the Debian user and new contributor surveys and figure out what to say about synfig if I get the chance to do a lightning talk about it.

/me now officially excited

Syndicated 2008-06-28 10:21:33 (Updated 2008-06-28 11:00:22) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:50 UTC) »

Surveying the Debian community!

As a Debian developer I have on occasion felt a bit out of touch with doing things with Debian and out of touch with other users. I mentioned to some folks at DebConf7 that I felt I focused too much on working on Debian and not actually connected to what the benefit of working on Debian is.

Partially as a result of those feelings and partially because I thought it would be an interesting thing to do, I started to prepare a couple of simple surveys early this year. The first one went out earlier last month and I posted the second one a few days ago after far too much procrastination and running the wording by a few people - thanks to Micah for the drug boats question :)

So, if you are a Debian user or are a new contributor (or DM/NM/AM or new DD), I would greatly appreciate hearing from you. Please respond to the survey addresses rather than my personal ones.

So far I have 15 or so responses to the new contributor survey, but ideally I would have many more, so please send something in if you are getting involved in Debian development or helping others get involved.

I've had about 24 responses to the user survey so far. Many of you will have heard about Debian success stories like Extremadura, Bhutan, HP, Skolelinux, Sanger and other high-profile Debian users. I'm hoping to hear about as many different uses of Debian as possible, so please keep the responses coming in.

The primary audience for these surveys is the Debian development community. The results will go to the debian-devel-announce and debian-private, I also hope to have a discussion or two about them at DebConf8 in Argentina. There is no time-frame for closing the survey or releasing the results, like the Debian distribution, I release when ready :)

PS: Please install the popularity-contest package on your machines if possible and subscribe to the packages.qa.debian.org pages for packages that you particularly care about.

PPS: Please feel free to ask me questions in your responses and I will attempt to reply as time allows.

Syndicated 2008-04-03 10:09:25 (Updated 2008-04-03 16:01:16) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:50 UTC) »

Synfig January Challenge, Open Video meeting

So today is the last day of the 2008 Synfig January Challenge. It is hopefully the first of many synfig challenges, I hope that the February one will be for a new splash screen for Synfig.

My entry is fairly simple and boring compared to the other entries, but it represents one thing about Synfig that I think about a lot: we need more developers! Anyway, here it is:

pabs' Synfig January Challenge entry

There is nothing special in it, but I put up the source code too.

Also, I've been informed that there will be an Open Video Developer meeting on Friday February 1st 2008 at 21:00 UTC on irc.freenode.net in #openvideo. Should be an interesting meeting, sounds like at least Synfig, Blender and Cinelerra people will be there, hopefully many more.

Syndicated 2008-01-31 03:18:49 (Updated 2008-01-31 04:14:16) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:50 UTC) »

KL wifi lazyweb

Dear Lazyweb

KL airport has free wifi, it works fine on Windows, but my Linux install relies on DHCP to get an IP address, gateway and DNS servers. I tried capturing some wifi traffic with wireshark, but had no luck. I remember in Thailand having to write down network settings from Windows computers in netcafes, then manually apply the settings after booting the copy of Debian on my external hard-drive. I'm currently using NetworkManager. On the way home from DebConf I'd like to be able to use the net in KL. What nasty Windows protocol am I missing support for?

Syndicated 2007-06-09 18:18:41 (Updated 2007-06-09 08:18:41) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:50 UTC) »

Linux in the Air

On the way home from Thailand, I saw Linux booting and X starting up on the in-seat screens on our Malaysia Airlines flight.

Also got a funny cartoon for my birthday called "The adventures of debianman".

Syndicated 2007-02-13 05:23:45 (Updated 2007-02-12 18:23:45) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:52 UTC) »

Back to landlubbery

So, back to geekery after too many months away. While we were in Thailand, I met Theppitak Karoonboonyanan and his friend Neutron Soutmun and a couple of others from the Thai Linux community. Thep is in the NM process for Debian, he maintains Thai support packages in Debian and Neutron is a Debian user. Neutron writes firmware for GPS receivers (IIRC) and other GIS stuff, I'm hoping he will get involved in the debian-gis subproject. I think I convinced Neutron to at least think about applying to NM :D. We talked about a lot of things, mainly about Thai localisation and the challenges involved. He mentioned that the language barrier is a big problem for Thai people, so their main focus has been firstly infrastructure (text rendering, layout and wrapping, fonts, input methods, locale, etc) and now translation (and the associated, laborious localisation efforts). He told me a bit about the writing system and how it is related to other systems in the area. Thep also mentioned the possibility of debconf9 being in Thailand, I recon it would be bloody awesome to have debconf in Asia. At least one other Debian Developer is interested in this, madduck is the initial instigator. I hope we both make it to debconf in the UK this year. I also visited the open source lab at NECTEC (the Thai National Electronics and Computer Technology Center), which is government funded. There, they develop LinuxTLE (an Ubuntu based desktop distro), LinuxSIS (a simple internet server for schools and businesses) and do lots of translation and advocacy work within NECTEC and with businesses and other organisations within Thailand. One thing about LinuxPLE which I noted was that during the post-install GUI configuration step, there is an option to setup the system to use fonts from a mounted Windows partition. IIRC, they explained that they found this was important because of a reliance on Microsoft fonts in Thailand. While I was there, I went to a couple of other labs and saw a demo of a cool Thai OCR and car registration plate recognition system, English to Thai machine translation (text) and direct English speech to Thai speech conversion. They were also working on some medical imaging and speech recognition stuff that I didn't get to see. I also met the founder of linux.thai.net, whose company develops this online map for Bangkok..

Also posted some photos from our trip through Thailand.

Syndicated 2007-02-03 04:49:52 (Updated 2007-02-02 17:49:52) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:52 UTC) »

Arrived in Thailand

[RV Heraclitus SE Asia voyage: blog photos]

Arrived at Ko Phuket a few days ago, I'm off the ship and at a hotel. In Bintan, we saw an interesting looking resort with plenty of coconut trees, logs and other stuff floating in the harbour, a snake oil merchant (with a live cobra), barges and transformer ferries, pouring rain and bad drainage. We left Bintan, went south for Selat Durian, then north past Singapore Straits, into the infamous Straits of Malacca and north past Malaysia and to the tourist island of Phuket. Along the way, we saw the coals of sunset, massive jellyfish in the dark green water, huge queues of massive ships covering the horizon as we passed the entrance to the Straits of Singapore, lights from Singapore in the distance, the pirate-free Straits of Malacca, where many large cargo and other ships passed us, the fleet of lights/boats that sprung up as if from nowhere some 50 miles off Phuket, the last sunrise on the ship (in a bay near Phuket) and an awesome NYE party on the ship.

Leaving the Heraclitus has been hard, I'm gonna miss that black and red ship and the awesome crew who got us the 3000 or so nautical miles from Cairns to Phuket. Now it is time to visit some Thai Linux developers and return to Australia.

Syndicated 2007-01-02 07:57:11 (Updated 2007-09-15 06:19:36) from pabs

19 Apr 2009 (updated 24 May 2009 at 07:52 UTC) »

Arrived in Bintan

[RV Heraclitus SE Asia voyage: blog photos]

The past few weeks, we changed our route to visit an uninhabited island (aka Ko Pulau Island) said to be "National Geographic, man" by some Americans we met in Kupang. On the way to Ko Pulau Island we saw a large school of pilot whales and dolphins, a humpback or other whale close to shore, a blue starfish and hot water vents nearby on the same mostly dead reef, a flock of birds feasting on a dense school of fish, a manta ray, a bonfire on the beach shared with the kids of Rote (who we swapped roast banannas and coconuts with), a clean hull and renewed sea-sickness. At Ko Pulau Island, we saw a long white beach made of small bead things instead of sand, with surf at either end and reef in between, a green lagoon with islands being eaten away at the base, a monkey-head rock, pink coral, reef fish, sea urchins, various pieces of flotsam washed up on the beach (flip-flops, a light-bulb, bottles, wood, burnie-beans, nautilus shells, a seabird egg, a dead seabird and other crap), sunset over the ocean with golden cirrus in the sky, turtle nests, tracks and hatchlings scurrying off into the water, Indonesian fishermen in need of water and turtle eggs, tidal pools with the occasional crab, ghost crabs darting towards the water, a pandanus stand, a small cave surrounded by discarded turtle eggshells, spinifex, hermit crabs, scrambling lizards, sunburn and other things. Later in our voyage, we saw a big lone flying fish, land looming mountainous on starboard, TNI, gratis reef fish, water buffalo and threatening rain clouds. The next major stop was a bay on the south side of Sumba, black cliffs to port and an eroded hillside to starboard. There, we enjoyed the excellent snorkeling against the cliffs and off the beach, birds calling from the forest, wasps - shiny blue and otherwise, meeting roaming cows in the forest, forest fungi and other sights. We met some fishermen and drove through the forested slopes toward a nearby city. On the way, we visited an Indonesian village and saw their traditional animist temple, ample baby pigs & dogs, tons of kids trying to get in photos, satellite dishes and graves in front of houses. Unfortunately, I crashed once we reached the hotel, missing eating and night life, but I did enjoy the sights from the windows of the cramped 4WD we were in. We headed for the 9.8 knot passage of Selat Sape, complete with eddies, currents, a barracuda and the steep slopes of a silent volcano. Since there, we saw an increasing number of interesting and curious Indonesian vessels, fish traps, the grey shapes of dolphins swimming in the aqua water under the bow, a floating sandal, a school of mahi-mahi jumping out of the water, a misty night, numerous schools of feeding fish, entangled luminescent trails left by dolphins swimming in the phosphorescent water beneath the bow, flashes of lightning in the distance, our first rain since Cairns, the associated storm, Jack the fisherman (a mast hallucination) and other things. Our next stop was Kalimunjava (north of Java, Indonesia), more than half way to Phuket. We spent a week there, watched lightning, collected rain, visited the local school, dived and snorkelled on the magnificant reef with some really nice university students (hi Lely, Dudu, Jaos and others) from Java who were doing a study on the corals and hiked up the steep slopes of the island. From there we ambled past Borneo, towards Bintan, near Singapore, experiencing the first non-calm seas in ages, dolphins in the storm, floating lines of debris, big barges, container ships and megatankers, a fancy, shiny yacht, fishing vessels with 50,000 lights, Rain Drop and it's egg (child of Rain the gecko), amazing cloudscapes at sunrise, throughout the day and at sunset on the way. Amazingly, we met the ∞ (Infinity, the new PCRF vessel) one find day in the South China Sea on their way to Bali. Eddie saw them from 5 miles away and knew almost straight away it was them. Michelle came on board and a lone daytime cumi (squid) swam between us as we parted. Before we arrived at Pulau Bintan (near Singapore), we saw seasnakes and a palm tree floating and lots of wind and rain.

We will probably arrive in Thailand by January and I'm thinking of passing thru Sydney on the way home, so let so please mail me if you want to meet up.

Syndicated 2006-12-19 05:59:02 (Updated 2006-12-18 18:59:02) from pabs

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