Older blog entries for vladimir (starting at number 10)

iPAQ bizzareness. (No, I haven't slept tonight. I need to dayshift.) I cannot use the latest iPAQ images since I have a PCMCIA sleeve and there is some register corruption which George tells me has been fixed, but the fix won't be available until Monday. My efforts to find it were futile. So, I have to use the images that have test6 on them to have networking. Well, there seem to be NFS issues. help-browser-skels.c (generated from idl for gnome-help-browser in gnome-core) does not compile. In the assemble step, it always gets an I/O error. The resulting .o file is exactly 94600 bytes in size; it assembles fine using the cross-assembler, and natively on the skiffs. But cannot assemble on the iPAQ. Then, I get bizzare read errors on random files while building, and since I'm building debs, I usually have to restart the entire build. What's worse is that the errors are repeatable. It /always/ wedges on the same file, in the same place. I'm hoping that test8 will fix this (magically?).. maybe nfsv3, I'm not sure. I think I'll try the v3 business.

Oh yeah. So Milosevic is out and Kostunica is in. Everyone's really excited (my Dad called me to tell me to turn on CNN :-). This should be a nice change -- finally someone who cares about Serbia and Yugoslavia and who has half a political brain is leading the country. The next few years will be interesting.

ARGH. Joey is back! He came in this morning saying that he had spoken to the landlady (who was planning to fire him) and that she had agreed to give him one more chance. So he did stuff today; but the boss came with him (who was supposed to be doing the work, except he had a window shatter on his hand and blah blah blah). Joe said that the boss spent quite a bit of time yelling at Joey for the stupid things that he did. Joey claims that he will be back tomorrow morning to finish repairing the cracks in the walls. We'll see.

I tried to go furniture shopping; I want one of those small writing desks with a hutch for my room. Most of them are perfect laptop-sized, and the drawers will be nice. I also desperately need to find a dresser so that I can move my clothes off my suitcase/floor. Oh, and a bed. That would both give me storage space under the bed, and also get me off the air mattress. Oh, and a rug, since our floors are rather ugly. So I've basically got my work cut out for me this weekend. (Good thing Monday is a holiday!)

I had some idiot of a cop wait for me to come out of the car this morning and pull in next to me. He's the one who gave me the ticket by mail (to california) for improper display of registration. I -had- my CA temporary tag in the windshield. My plates didn't come until Friday. This was Saturday morning. I told him, but he didn't believe me, since the registration slip said Aug 16 (which is like 4 days after the car was purchased) -- but I had no documents on me to prove the mailing date nor the purchase date of the car. He then proceeded to make me put the plates on right there, and he waited while I ran around trying to find the right tool. (I was about to drive to the office and put the plates on there.) If the ticket was more than $35, I would contest it, since I have all the documents, but it's just not worth my time. The overpriced garage across the street is looking more and more inviting -- I asked them if they had monthly spaces available a few days ago and they didn't, so I have to wait until next week.

I have a diabolical iPAQ plan.. will have to see if it pans out. My Debian/ARM-on-iPAQ page was slashdotted the other day; kinda cool, except that the info on that page isn't anything that someone with unix knowledge couldn't figure out. But, I suppose it promoted awareness of the iPAQ and Linux on the iPAQ.. that can't be bad for sales :-)

6 Oct 2000 (updated 8 Oct 2000 at 11:17 UTC) »

Finally got Red Carpet beaten into shape. I think I've slept on the average 3-4 hours per night for the past week or so... I did sleep from about 2pm until 9pm this afternoon after our "party" today at noon; so now my schedule is officially backwards. Well, hopefully I can get up before 9 tomorrow and get some non-work things accomplished.

I almost went to Toronto this weekend, and I almost went to Salt Lake City this weekend. Neither one worked out, so I'm stuck here. Which is probably good, since I can hopefully do something useful to the apartment to make it livable. Living on cardboard boxes and a futon grows old after a while.

I'm sure there will be some meeting tomorrow so I suppose I'll have to go to work for at least a little while, but I am not going near work the entire weekend nor monday. I need to do some photography again (need to get my slide scanner back from my dad too), maybe find a gym to sign up with that has racquetball, and some other stuff.

My IBM replacement keyboard arrived today, even though the IBM rep said that I probably wouldn't see it before monday. (My backspace key broke -- I called them at like 9pm on tuesday and they shipped a new one out to me after a 10 minute phone call -- I'm getting to really like IBM!)

Gnomotion is still on hold. Maybe I'll do something with that this weekend. There seem to be at least a few people interested, although I'm sure there will be more once it actually does something useful. I might pull out the bits and integrate it with another library (like smpeg or something) and make it a Bonobo object to make at least the video player part a currently-useful Gnome tool. Plus, federico goes back to Mexico early next week, so this is my last weekend for a little while to pick his brain about GnomeCanvas issues in person. I'll be a happy campter if I can get a timeline implemented this weekend. I've also thought about rewriting the whole thing in Gtk/Ada, but that's not feasable since there are currently no Gnome/Ada bindings, which is too bad -- the Ada bindings for Gtk look really nice. Maybe I'll post some GM screenshots somewhere once I get something nice on the screen again.

Had a crazy weekend. Thought Joey would be finally out of there on Saturday, but he left sometime Saturday afternoon and we haven't seen him yet. This is ridiculous; I have no intentions of paying rent for this month. Got a new laptop -- IBM X20, love the thing, except for the annoying turbine fan that comes on every once in a while. (Selling my old one, anyone interested in a loaded VAIO XG19?)

Phil came down for the weekend, was the first time I'd ever met him. He wasn't what I expected from irc ;-) We played powerball 2 and virtua tennis on the DC all weekend (yes, we are lame) and watched a few movies. Completely and utterly unproductive. ARGH. And now I should be sleeping instead of randomly rambling.

Ok, so I'm really pissed. 1 -- Our apartment is a dump. We have not moved in. The contractor is still not finished, even though he promised he would be completely done by this weekend, which, incidentally, is what he promised for last weekend, and the weekend before that. I just filled two large thrash bags with trash. All of mine and joe's boxes are still in the front computer room. The TV (Home Theatre) room still has no furniture, except for itp's chair and the box from my printer. The AVR doesn't work, because it broke after the first 2 hours of usage, it needs to go back to the bastards at Circuit City. I'm tempted to take back the speakers, too. But they do sound good. (But they each have powered subs, not really necessary if you have a separate sub, esp for our small room...) The TV works great, thankfully. And DSL will be installed within a week or so (much better than the 6 weeks initially quoted!)

At least I managed to finish up the debian/arm-on-ipaq howto today, and got quite a bit of interest.. the CRL folks want me to install a changeroot on the skiff clusters, and then possibly use debian as the base for the sharkpool.

This weekend I've decided to polish my own floor, clean out my own closet, and wash and fix my own windows, so that I can start organizing some stuff. Waiting for this mythical 'contractor' is not going to cut it. I wish I could just talk our landlady into selling the place; it would solve lots of problems.

Tomorrow (today) we need to babysit our apartment until the DSL guy comes, which, according to the email, will be "sometime between 8 A.M. and 4 P.M.". Yay.

Mostly a non productive day. More pounding on libgcrypt/gnupg. Lots of email. Still playing with Debian/ARM on the iPAQ. I posted a HOWTO and got some good responses; the CRL folks want to install Debian on some of the machines, at least a changeroot.

Great, I thought. I'll take care of that real quick. Well, I would have, except for NFS locking issues. I just could NOT get nfs to handle fcntl locks right. So I remounted the directory with nolock. Phew, no locking issues. Now, the devices in /dev are showing up as pipes, except for a select few. So, things like /dev/null and /dev/zero are now named pipes, which causes all sorts of programs to fail, as you might imagine. I gave up for a little while.

On the bright side, the debian/arm helix gnome build is going fine, albeit slowly. Can't wait to get a bit more ram in this little box...

Aarrggh. Red Carpet is being a pain. Lots of intricate twisty little issues, all alike. You can go north, east, south, or west. You hear a grue.

The grand vorbisizing project is progressing along nicely; hopefully we'll release the mr toolset sometime later this week. Need to set up the web site first. As federico says, I want 36 hour days. Someone should submit a patch. (Somehow I don't think it would be accepted, unfortunately.)

Federico and I decided to declare not this weekend but the following one as personal-project-hack weekend. I'm looking forward to it, it should be fun. I'm going to try to integrate gdk-pixbuf-yuv into the mainline as one part.

Went to the Boston U&LG meeting tonight; Jim Gettys and the iPAQ CRL folks spoke. Had a brief discussion about trying to shift iPAQ application development to python-gnome -- you'd take a hit having to keep python around, but the individual apps would take up very little space. There was also mention of a 128MB DRAM hack to the iPAQs -- now that would be cool.

It is now 5am and I really need some sleep... hearing the garbage truck outside reminds me that we forgot to take out the garbage. Oh well. Our apartment looks like a dump, no furniture, half finished. :-(

Okay, so I've moved from California to Boston, expecting to find a beautiful apartment and being able to move in and enjoy it. I almost succeeded. Upon arrival, I discovered that the contractor was still not done (even though the work was supposed to be done on Aug 15), and every week he promises that it will be done by the end of the following week. We'll see. I'm at the point where I will declare my room 'finished', clean it up, and then move on to another room.

I'm a bit annoyed, since I haven't had a chance to hack on GnoMotion for about 4 weeks. I have patches to gdk-pixbuf to make it handle YUV images and Do The Right Thing with the XVideo extension, so that you can get really really fast YUV conversion and upsampling. Cool stuff. (I've DV video playback going at 30fps, 1600x1200 through gdk-pixbuf.)

I have to rant about ill-informed people who are going on an anti-GNOME crusade, in this case aaronl. I really wish people would a) get a clue; b) apply that clue before saying things like "The app that has to load all of the gnome libs is much larger than the one that doesn't, because I don't have anything else that uses GNOME." Besides completely misunderstanding the idea of shared memory, he is also PROUD of the fact that he has forked Gnapster and Sawfish -- and plans to fork Pan and a few other projects.

Maciej has a few comments on how to measure real-world app usage, instead of noticing that the numbers in your ps output got bigger and saying "look! bloat!"... similar to the prontomail folks who claim that their app isn't bloated because the perl interpreter isn't "their" bloat.

On the bright side, Red Carpet is coming along nicely. It's definitively a project that has evolved over the past few months.. we're looking forward to the first release Real Soon Now (tm). The RPM and Debian back-ends are working great!

I've also had lots of fun playing with a Compaq iPAQ -- we managed to get some CF sleeves, and one PCMCIA sleeve. I've got Debian/ARM on a nfs-mounted partition, and I just finished building a working distribution of XF4 from source (so that I can make debs). The build was done entirely on the iPAQ, over NFS. It took about 2.5 hours (which isn't bad at all!). I've got lots of interesting ideas for apps for the iPAQ -- it's clear that most existing apps will NOT work on such an environment, even though the major limitation is screen real estate.

So I suppose at some point I'll actually get decent at this. The work here that I'm part of at Helix is coming along nicely; it's going to be a nice product. (Intentionally vague comment ;-) Side note: grip is so damn cool. Making mp3's has never been easier.

It's 3am again, I get a full night's sleep every other night, and that's okay, I guess. Nat "Suck" Friedman decided that it would probably be a good idea if we nuked Quake off people's computers, but then just went down to not playing and especially not dragging him into any Quake games. That's fair enough. He can't seem to resist. :-)

My latest online shopping screwup: I order a camera from mpsuperstore.com. They have a great price. I ordered on monday night, took overnight shipping, expected it here wednesday morning. Wednesday afternoon, no camera. I call them. They say, "Oh, did you order on Monday?" "Yes." "Our oder download was corrupted on Monday, we lost all the orders for that day, we're really sorry. I can connect you to a sales associate and you can place your order again." I said OK, since she was being nice and polite. Anyways, I place the order, and I have it firmly in my mind that I will get them to ship it overnight, and I will NOT pay for it. So, I'm talking to the guy, he asks me if I want the 5yr warranty for like $350, I say no, we keep going, and get to shipping. I tell him again what happened, and ask him to get me overnight shipping and waive the shipping charges. He checks with manager. Manager says no, but they will give me the warranty for like $280. I tell him I'll take the warranty if they give it to me for $200. He checks with manager, manager says yes.

So, the events went kind of like this: I order camera on monday for delivery on wednesday, just the camera, still $100 shipping (+insurance). On wednesday I discover order was lost. I order again. I still pay $100 shipping. Plus I pay $200 in warranty. I'm still trying to convince myself I didn't get raped.

Okay, that's it for now.. we'll see if anything else exciting happens.

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