3 Jul 2005 shlomif   » (Master)

Random Hacktivity

I added some sections to my Objectivism and Open Source essay. I did more work on the Web Meta Language homepage focused on getting all the pages to validate. The pages use a lot of deprecated markup (like <font> tags, zero-width images, various visual attributes, tables, etc.) and getting it to be valid and semantically correct is proving quite a lot of work. It also makes use of many WML APIs, which as I am unable to replace right now, have to work around them or replace with more modern equivalents.

SVN::RaWeb::Light

I gave some love to SVN::RaWeb::Light after a long time of neglect. What I did involved implementing the so-called URL translations, in which one can specify URLs of the real repository to be displayed next to the URLs in the web-interface. That way, you can copy the link and paste it in a console (or wherever) to manipulate the actual repository. As usual, I wrote more test code than actual code. As a result of all this feature adding, the directory display function became very long, and ugly. I guess I'll have to refactor it.

Pod::Xhtml's Pleasant Surprise

During one discussion in the Perl-IL, Offer Kaye complained that the output of Pod::Html does not validate. I suggested he uses Pod::Xhtml instead, and after he tested it he found that it still did not validate. I realized it was because some of the XML IDs generated by it were identical. So I planned to fix it, but when I came to it a couple of days ago, and inspected the code, I found it was already implemented.

Turns out Offer reported it to the module maintainers, and they fixed it themselves. It was a pleasant surprise.

SpamAssassin Compilation Trouble

I had problem compiling SpamAssassin on Mandriva 2005 LE. The test seemed to get stuck and started to consume all available memory and CPU. I eventually found it happened because I had pointed LD_LIBRARY_PATH to a Berkeley DB-4.2 installation. After I removed it, it compiled fine.

DIMES project

We had a very nice presentation about the DIMES Internet Mapping project over at the Tel Aviv Linux Club. The purpose of the DIMES project is to map, measure and track the Internet. It does so by having users install agents on their machines, which then collect networking data and send it to a centralized server that processes it. It has a lot of cool applications.

If you have a Windows machine, you can install the Java agent their and join a team to track the statistics. A Linux agent is in the works.

Perl-IL Meeting: Stas Bekman

Stas Bekman is now visiting Israel and last Thursday he gave a presentation to the Israeli Perl Mongers. Despite the fact it was announced relatively at the last minute about 13 people arrived, and we had a lot of fun. There wasn't a lot of time for us to occupy the room, and so as a result, Stas could cover only very little of his presentation (that normally takes 5-to-6 hours).

One anecodte he told us was that when he was lecturing somewhere in Canada, and asked if people wanted to have a break after a few hours, they told him that they did not, and yet kept asking him questions, etc.

The slides are available online in PDF format if anyone is interested. All in all, it was very interesting.

BerliOS Problems

Three of the bugs I filed in the BerliOS bug tracker got closed before the weekend, without a comment or anything. Plus, they are all still valid. I could not find a way how I can re-open them. Another thing I noticed is that Apache no longer serves tar.gz files, and I have to put them in the projects files and link there. Now I have to put all the Freecell Solver tarballs of previous stable versions there.

Fixing a Mandriva Upgrade

There's this guy who uses Linux, and who contacts me whenever he needs help. Recently, I burned out the new Mandriva 2005 LE CDs to him, and he used them to upgrade the system. Then he reported he had a problem. After he drove me to his house and I operated the computer, I discovered that the problem had something to do with the fact devfsd was mounted, while udev should have been used instead. I did not know how to fix it, but this document explaining how to disable devfs on Mandriva was very helpful. Turns out I had to tweak the LILO settings. I did not encounter the other problems reported there.

Then I tried to set up the Microphone, but I was not able to, no matter what I tried. Waveform playback in the soundcard worked perfectly, though.

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