Older blog entries for softkid (starting at number 292)

Are you using Thunderbird in an enterprise environment ?

If so we would like to get some feedback from you - see this Thread on the Thunderbird enterprise mailing list.

Syndicated 2011-10-30 12:13:45 (Updated 2011-10-28 11:15:28) from Ludovic's weblog

How to Geotag pictures on flickr

I'l try to go thru all the techniques I know and I've used to add geographical information to pictures, so they can be mapped to an actual point on a world map.

Why flickr ?

Because it's the online service I use to expose my photos to the world. Some of the techniques explained here can be used with other services - but as I don't use them you'll need dear reader to find the tweaks needed.

Using the provided map

Is probably the best solution. You just snap the picture and when you upload it you move it to the proper spot on the map.

  • Easy to use
  • Fast
  • Some maps are incomplete so you can't geotag that way
  • Where do you put the picture , where you where or where the subject was

Using an external GPS source

This requires a little bit more of hardware than your camera - but you will be able to geotag pictures where the map isn't accurate enough (like for say this picture). You'll need your camera, a gps device capable of logging gps coordinates and some software. The software will match pictures and longitudes and latitudes. The way this work is quite simple : each time the gps write a log entry it also logs the time. When you press the shutter button, the camera also records the time. The Piece of software will read both files and do a matching based on those time stamps (I use GPS photo linker on my mac, and heard good reviews from geosetter).
Pros :

  • Not too complex
  • Tags anywhere on earth
  • More post processing
  • cost of the device
  • need to think about some extra batteries for the device

Using alternate services

I know of at least two. They both use google maps which is the most accurate maps available for free online (AFAIK). And they will geotag your pictures using the flickr API. These services are http://loc.alize.us/ and http://maps.yuan.cc/. They both use the same data , and I have noticed any differences using those services. I did use use these services because I didn't always have a GPS, or the gps with me.

Last but not least I've just found out a nice way to geotag pictures taken while flying on planes the explanations are here.

Syndicated 2011-10-17 13:14:34 (Updated 2011-10-17 13:59:57) from Ludovic's weblog

15 Oct 2011 (updated 21 Nov 2011 at 16:05 UTC) »

How I started being involved in mozilla

Once upon a time I used to be a Desktop linux user , and OS/2 user and a BeOS user. Back in 1999, around the M8 release - Be Inc. did a port of mozilla. This meant that my favorite os would have a better browser than Netpositive that couldn't even render /.

At this time I was working for ITSgroup, installing, deploying Computer Associates software at clients - and my laptop was able to only run Linux or Windows. My home only had a slow modem with very pricey access fee to the net. So I decided that I could use the bandwidth available at work ( a whooping 2 MB ) to test Mozilla on either Linux or Windows and report bugs. I thought that fixing bugs on linux, windows would also fix bugs on the product Be would release.

And Be went to the toilet, and I switched to the then very nice toy os that Mac OS X 10.0 was. I tried to participate to opendarwin, tried mach-o builds when they were experimental. But Mozilla at that time was really unusable on mac os. But I kept using it on my work machines because of the tab feature. Trying to report bug when I could.

One day I stubble upon something called Chimera. Ho and that was able to browse the web, and it was fast, slick and efficient, so every now and then I would download the latest version and run it. I don't remember how, but at some point I made the connection with Camino and Mozilla - something I was familiar with. That was just before the release of Camino 0.7. The Camino effort almost got killed when Apple released Safari. Unfortunately Safari didn't let me log on my favorite site at that time the mighty ubix.org. So I kept using he browser that worked for me: Camino

In July of that same year, the mozilla/netscape teams got fired and I wanted Camino to make progress , so I started to annoy Mike Pinkerton, Simon Woodside to make Camino more a community effort. I started this blog for that purpose - see my post from that time in the mozilla/camino section. #camino appeared on irc.mozilla.org and we started working towards 0.8. A few months later the build requirement changed, and I couldn't help with dev so I started working on making l10n work for Camino. At the same time I needed a proper email client so I used Thunderbird and tried to report bugs.

In 2004 Tristan made more noise about Fosdem, and agreed to give me a ride back from Brussels if I attended. So I went and had a blast - I met Patrick the author of enigmail, Alex from svg and jssh fame.

In 2006 my personal life went upside down so I decided not to continue Camino related activities, I got a job offer in Holland from Alex who I had met at fosdem again in 2005 and 2006. I took the offer as QA lead for Joost a video client based on xulrunner. That started my professional life doing quality assurance. In 2008, we stopped doing mozilla related things and at fosdem I talked to Peterv and he simply said send a resume over if you want to do more Mozilla related things. That got me thinking - It reminded me david's email about the start of mozillamessaging and I ended up applying for their QA lead position. After tow rounds of interviews (I refused after the first round because I was starting to see someone and thought I wouldn't have the time to do a proper job) I started in February 2009 working full time on Thunderbird.

Syndicated 2011-10-15 08:18:52 (Updated 2011-11-10 11:56:58) from Ludovic's weblog

Runkeeper vs sports tracker

Lately I have been doing more sport in my daily life than ever before. This is a direct effect from my life style, as if you didn't know I work from home. Doing a daily period of sports, sports is good for my body and sometimes it also clears up my mind. It started by me deciding to go to the swimming pool on a weekly basis. And then I'm in Holland so I decided to bike and try to do it on a daily basis. As I don't really get any pleasure from the biking itself I started using an application on my phone to track down how much I was exercising - and I really have a things for stats (be it what kind of music I like etc ...).

Run Keeper

I started using runkeeper as some of my friends where using it. Runkeeper runs on either your iphone or android powered phone and records, your speed and your gps coordinates. So you are able afterwards to look your activity. On top of that when you break a record , they send you an email telling you that you've been the fastest this week or the furthest this month. Runkeeper is based on a fremium model - most of the services are free. But some aren't like :

  • Aggregated stats (how much calories did I burn this week).
  • Training lessons (ie lessons to achieve something with training.
I was very happy with it with the exception that sometimes it had issues finding the gps - which made using the app sometimes difficult. And entering swimming data was kind of a nightmare as I couldn't really use the phone in the water. And sharing to facebook was broken for me

Sports tracker

Was recommended by my cousin, so I decided to give it a try. They offer the same free services and I like them better for the following reasons:

  • Gps is detected automatically
  • The application as a smoother Users Interface
  • The website is more polished
  • I can share to facebook
  • It's available on iphone, android and Nokia phones
So I recently switched to using them. I don't know what their business model is as the site is not loaded with ads. I'm not sold premium features. The only thing they seem to be selling are hardware devices to track my heart beats. So I'm a little suspicious about how they are making money but for now it really works better for me. I haven't tried swimming with it yet so I can't really say if swimming is easier to tack with this application than with the runkeeper one.

Syndicated 2011-10-10 13:21:20 (Updated 2011-10-10 13:50:48) from Ludovic's weblog

6 Oct 2011 (updated 21 Nov 2011 at 16:05 UTC) »

Started my day by writting an email to remeberingsteve@apple.com

Here is the verbatim copy of the email :

Date: Thu, 06 Oct 2011 08:48:33 +0200
From: Ludovic Hirlimann
Organization: Famille Hirlimann
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.5; rv:9.0a2) Gecko/20111005 Thunderbird/9.0a2
MIME-Version: 1.0
To: Ludovic Hirlimann
Subject: Thank you for the Apple II, for call -151
X-Enigmail-Version: 1.4a1pre

I would like to say a big thank you to Steve for making the Apple II,
that got me started into computers. The call -151 function embedded in
basic gave me the power and tools to understand how computer worked. And
boy that was fun , really fun, that got me into programming for my
pleasure - small and crappy projects - but still it was fun. I was
hooked and never looked back ever after.

Thank YOU

I've removed my PGP/Mime signature to make it a bit more readable.

Syndicated 2011-10-06 06:46:07 (Updated 2011-11-10 10:30:48) from Ludovic's weblog

Flickr's Android App versus flickroid

Last week flickr announced that they were releasing an application for Android devices.

I use two devices a Tablet from Asus and a phone from Samsung. So I went to both devices and decided to install the app and see what it had to offer. I also wanted to compare it to the tools I was using on these devices to access flickr.com (a web browser and flickroid). Unfortunately the official apps is only available on phone devices and not on tablets.

So let's try to define my needs when I'm using a mobile device like a tablet or a phone and access flickr :

  1. Be able to post, tag and file pictures in my sets and groups

  2. Read/reply to comments made on pictures

  3. See my stats

And the importance is in that order, exactly in that order. I really can wait to be front of a computer to see my stats. I prefer to use my computer to reply to comments, see other's pictures, fav pictures and comments on pictures (and I use a bunch of extensions to make those experience better at least on my desktop).


is more a small utility that plug itself into Android and adds flickr share buttons proposed and used by other apps. Exporting photos to flickr with it is a nice experience. You can tag, file the pictures into your sets or even create sets. It works nicely over wifi and 2g/3g. When upload fails you can retry the uploads and all the metadata that you added on the initial upload try are kept.
Flickroid has two flows that I can list :

  • It's painfull to upload more than one image at a time which is what Roland does

  • It remembers your tags from one photo to the other and editing tags on the phone or tablet isn't the best experience.

For all my other needs, I will use the browser (except for organizr which doesn't support tap events)

Flickr's official application

Let's me do plenty more things, like read comments easily consume my friends images. I can consume way more with it - comments are made easy.

  • Favoring is easy too.

  • The UI is nice and really made to have the full flickr on the small screen.

  • The application let's me use the camera from my device and upload it ( I can even add some filters to have nice effects on the pictures).

  • When the image is geotagged and you are willing to share that, tags based on the location are automatically added.


  • I can't add my pictures to sets

  • Without wifi uploading fails - this might be fixed by the new version that got published today.

  • Failed uploads are not easily re-try-able - you need to re-enter all the metadata - if it's available in the application - I didn't find where it was.

  • Consuming photos is easier on tablets with bigger screen than phone and the app isn't present on the tablet android market.

So overall I like both for different usage. In an ideal world I would use flickroid on my phone to create content. And I would use the official flickr application on my tablet to comment and interact with my photographic social graph. For now I use my phone more than my tablet so I will stick with flickroid.

Syndicated 2011-10-03 08:33:26 (Updated 2011-10-03 09:23:42) from Ludovic's weblog

Finding firefox for Android slow ?

Then I've got good news for you, using a nightly build will make anything you do on your mobile faster. To install it just read the instructions at https://wiki.mozilla.org/Mobile/Platforms/Android#Download_Nightly. The speed difference is very, very noticeable - worth installing.

Syndicated 2011-09-27 07:50:22 (Updated 2011-09-27 07:54:09) from Ludovic's weblog

Small skype trick

I use skype to chat a lot. What i like about them is that they are persistent. If I'm not online, I won't miss any messages. I also like the fact that I have command line style utilities. And on top of that group chat are very practical.

I use skype out of a habit I caught at my previous job, where most of the communication was done via skype chats - so most of my recently active network is available on skype. Once in a while skype chats don't get through because skype's infrastructure thinks you are not online or that your correspondent is offline. This is annoying because once in a while you are online and miss messages.

To make sure that your message will get through is to call ! this will force skype's infrastructure to figure out if the person you are chatting with is online or offline as voice can't really be buffered or delayed, while messages can. So just pressing the call button will push your messages through.

Syndicated 2011-08-12 14:05:18 (Updated 2011-08-12 14:21:07) from Ludovic's weblog

BrowserID support for Movabletype ?

I'm looking for a movabletype plugin that would let me implement BrowserID on this blog. I've googled, I've twitted, and I've searched the movable type plugin directory but didn't find anything. Anybody interested in creating such a beast, to my knowledge the skills required are :

Bonus point if it supports earlier releases of Movabletype.

Syndicated 2011-07-19 11:08:05 (Updated 2011-07-19 11:16:20) from Ludovic's weblog

We need help from our users to figure out our topcrash for Thunderbird 5

We (the Thunderbird team) released Thunderbird 5.0 about a week ago. It's currently being offered to 10% of our users as an update from 3.1.11. When we release new versions we try to monitor early upgrader feedback in bugzilla, in getsatisfaction and on a crash stat reporting page. Our current top crasher is related to Lightning and Windows.

None of the developers can currently reproduce the bug, so we are counting on our users to help us debug the issue so we can fix it.

  • Are you using Windows?

  • Are you using Lightning?

  • Did you upgrade to Thunderbird 5.0 and Lightning 1.0b4?

  • Did you crash after that update?

If the answer to all these question is yes - maybe you can help us fix this issue. You'll need to locate your CrashID as explained on our knowledge base article. And look it up on the crash-stats page.

If the signature is cal::UTC() you can help us - if not we'll get to fixing your bug later.
What we need to know is:

  • What were you doing when you crashed?

  • Do you use tasks?

  • What kind of calendar (or calendars) do you connect to?

  • Do you have a calendar tab open in Thunderbird?

  • Do you have a lot of events that are created in a different time zone?

Let us know those settings, by either living a comment here, or on bug 603416
  • Finally, and most importantly, do you crash often due to this issue?
If the answer to that last question is yes, try to follow the instructions at https://developer.mozilla.org/en/how_to_get_a_stacktrace_with_windbg to get a more complete stack trace or leave a comment in the bug and we will ask you to do a few things and that should let us fix the crash.

Syndicated 2011-07-07 16:00:52 (Updated 2011-07-07 16:11:06) from Ludovic's weblog

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