Older blog entries for vladimir (starting at number 15)

Life

'Twas two days before Christmas, and I'm at home alone. Well, not completely alone; one of itp's friends is staying over at our place temporarily. So, I decided to not go home over the holidays so that I can instead go home for about two weeks in January and get some skiing in and stuff. However, this means that now I have plenty of time to clean up the filthy mess that we call our apartment. Yay. I'm starting the Massive Orderlization Project (aka MOP) today. And then, after I'm done, we're hiring a maid; the three of us combined are obviously not enough to keep this place clean. Yay.

This being Christmas reminds me of the many many people that I should get into contact with that I just haven't because I'm lazy. Sigh. Even with email, I don't know why I can't just get myself to write out a quick email or letter or something. Well, maybe I'll try to do something about that tomorrow.

I might end up going skiing in New Hampshire with Mike Whitson on Monday; that should be fun. I haven't gone skiing for two seasons, so it will definitively be exciting. I hope I survive.

Work

Work goes good; finished my large chunk o' rewrite, and then spent most of this week writing a whole bunch of verification scripts, editing tools, and the like. Quite excited for LWE in January.

A few weeks ago I hacked up a Bonobo video player component using the framework I had done for gnomotion; it works quite well, except for A/V sync, which I will get to at some point. It uses libquicktime for the QT stuff; the library has some issues that I will have to deal with (like, there is no way to tell it "you're going be streamed this file in chunks, it will never be written to disk"), but that can be overcome. I need to write up some white papers.

Moved into additional office space across the hall; I now have a full desk to myself, with drawers and the like! It's a large space, and should hold us over nicely until we can move in February to our new space. Yay.

Wow. It's been a really long time since my last diary. Just got back from COMDEX last night. It was both fun and not fun. We stayed at a little motel (Best Western Mardi Gras) that I cannot with a straight face reccomend to anyone, even my enemies (according to one of our cab drivers, when the cabby convention comes to Vegas, they keep the prostitutes at the Mardi Gras... hmmm).

Had some really good food -- lots of good (and expensive!) restaurants over there. Lost $20. (I knew I should've have even tried in the first place :-) GameWorks was pretty fun.. $25 for 2 hours of unlimited arcade play. They have lots of games.. played Dance Dance Revolution with Tuomas -- I have to get this game for the PlayStation. We were playing on the beginner level, then some kid came after us and played on the Expert level and kicked butt -- there was a huge crowd. Then Tuomas and I went back and tried the "Standard" level, and bombed out horribly. The crowd dispersed. :-)

COMDEX itself was good; we were a very popular booth. All our big demos had large crowds. Lots of interesting ideas and questions were brought up by people about both Red Carpet and Evolution; we have lots of food for thought until LinuxWorld in January.

I'm flying home to California on Tuesday for a week.. it will be good to get out of here for a while.

7 Nov 2000 (updated 7 Nov 2000 at 10:01 UTC) »

So much for the 8am thing. It is now 4:45 am and I am awake, for the second (third?) night in a row. Actually, today should be the last of these, as I'm trying to get myself back to a normal sleep schedule (I have to before COMDEX next week; otherwise I will be absolutely hating life). It all fell apart when I started rewriting a large module that I had worked on for the past few months, and attempting to do it in a week. Bad idea. :-) However, that work is going fairly well in any case.

I was excited to discover that SGI had released Performer for Linux. I know they did this a while ago, but I didn't discover it until this weekend. The problem now is that there really are no high performance OpenGL cards for linux. My G400 barely cuts it; I'm almost definitively going to purchase a G400Max, and I'm seriously considering a 3DLabs GVX210 (as it's supported by Xinside), but a) it's expensive; b) it's already a bit old; c) the drivers aren't open source. Using nonfree drivers kinda scares me, especially now that I'm used to running stock xf4. (The 3DLabs Wildcat 4210 looks awesome, but it's ridiculously expensive -- a Compaq-branded one is $5000. And there are no Linux drivers. But it can do 1600x1200 at 90Hz with full-scene AA [and higher]. Mmmm.)

I did start playing around with Performer... here's a (large) screenshot of something (and another) I am playing with right now. I'm trying to find a place to get the Ada bindings.. and possibly source to paintball, if it's available.

There's a chance I'll be going to London for a few days sometime in December to visit a friend. I'm looking forward to that; I'm more excited about going home for Thanksgiving, especially after COMDEX.

Saw Charlie's Angels last Friday. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Fun movie.

Nice. I've been able to wake up at around 8am every day for over a week now. It feels good. Joey the contractor finished everything, and I had my bookshelf delivered today. (Ridiculously expensive, but solid wood.) And I installed one of my blinds on my windows (the only casualty was a little lamp that I'm going to have to replace that I dropped the blind on. Oops.). Saw Dr. T and the Women the other day with Miguel, Ian, and others. Horrible, horrible movie. It had a few funny parts, but they were mostly in the preview. The movie had no plot; it just had some events that were strung together.

Last night, went out to dinner with a few people, and then went to a coffee shop afterwards. There were about 6 or 7 laptops in the place, and it was tiny. The funniest one was a guy sitting next to the door with Microsoft Word on his screen, writing a paper entitled "The Internet, the future of computing." Miguel had a hard time not laughing until he got out the door.

Also saw The Candidate. Unlike the aforementioned movie, this one was very good. Great plot, very good performances, great suspense. Go see it.

I am currently doing evil things to GtkHTML. We'll see how it goes.

My furniture got delivered today! Woke up this morning at 8 (my dayshifting plan worked!), got everything out of the room and spent two hours cleaning the floor and windows. I got through one of the two windows. No, I'm not incometent. There was probably a few months worth of grime on the windows, and each 'window' actually has 4 glass panes and a screen. First I had to figure out how to remove the windows. In the process I learned how to correctly install the windows so that they wouldn't come crashing down on you. I also learned that the windows aren't the proper kind (i.e the little ledge to open them is on the inside instead of the outside when you mount them -- and no, you can't just turn them, because doing that gives you a nice 1/2" gap between the top and bottom windows), and that some of them don't have the proper device to stop them from crashing down on you. (Like they did on the cable guy!)

Joey the Contractor From Hell was the one who put them back. Ha. Incidentally, he didn't come in yesterday like his note said he would. Ian called him today at noon, and he said he would be in today to do the wall in my room and some other stuff. He didn't show up. The window people that Jennifer hired called; they told me that they needed her to be there while they came to look at the place, and that they refused to come to even look without her here. I'm not sure why they called me (I've never spoken to them before). I told them to call her.

Plus, I'm getting sick. And I need shelves so that I can get the boxes out from the other room, so that room can be used. And I think Ian is annoyed with me. And I'm sitting on my futon chair with the plastic still on the pad because I have no cover for it. Blah.

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.

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