August 30, 2002

Perhaps troubling

The two groups I've got on power repeat on iTunes are Afro Celt Sound System and KMFDM. This may be a sign of a bad thing...

Posted by Dan at 01:28 AM | Comments (0)

August 28, 2002

Ah, remote access again

For some reason, Jagwyre broke Kung-Log, the nice off-line tool I'm using to post these. (Beats browser-based access with a big stick) Well, Adriaan's given it a thump and it works again, and rather nicely at that. Yay!

Posted by Dan at 10:36 PM | Comments (0)

August 25, 2002


Well, I bit the bullet and upgraded to 10.2 today. It's been something of a mixed bag. On the one hand, a lot of stuff is snappier. On the other, I've a bunch of things that just don't work. Unfortunately Auqfied emacs and kung-log are two of the things that fall down and go boom, which makes writing for the book and making blog entries about jaguar somewhat problematic. Word works, but I'd rather not covert over in the middle of a chapter. Might have to, if I can't get emacs built from source. (I had lously luck before, maybe it'll be easier with Jaguar)

Oh, and of course XDarwin's busted too, so I can't fire up an X version of emacs. Gah.

Might be time to try BBEdit.

Posted by Dan at 02:00 AM | Comments (0)

August 24, 2002

I think Python's dying

I'm not 100% sure, but I think Python's heading down the long road to irrelevance, following such other luminaries as PL/1, Pascal, and Lisp. I have no hard numbers to back this one up with--it's just a feeling so might be completely wrong, but... Exegesis 5 was released the other day, and it made Slashdot. Normally whenever something perlish hits slashdot, the slavering masses of rabid python folks come out and start lobbing grenades at perl. (Much to the discomfort of many of the python dev team, I expect) This time?


The Ruby folks were out in force, which was interesting. Ruby's been getting more and more buzz lately in the English-speaking world. The Rubyists, though, are rather more polite about themselves than the Python (or Perl, to some extent) folks. Probably because the community reflects the folks at the top. Ruby's got Matz, who's one of the nicest guys you could ever hope to exchange e-mail with.

Posted by Dan at 03:29 AM | Comments (0)

OS X got big!

For some reason, all of a sudden, apps under OS X started taking huge gobs of memory. I'm not sure when it started, but now a set of apps that used to grab about 750M are grabbing 1.5G or more. (Tonight I topped out at 3.5G) Not normally a huge problem, but it makes quitting out of idle apps a major pain, as they start swapping in and out and 10.1.5 puts up the spinning rainbow cursor. It's not all apps, but looks like mainly Cocoa ones.

Hopefully Jaguar will take care of this. It's annoying, and makes the machine sluggish and unpleasant to work with.

Posted by Dan at 02:44 AM | Comments (0)

August 18, 2002

Just pisses me off

It's when I see pieces like this that I really, really want to start in on people. This guy's more or less living the same life as most of the rest of the country and it's unusual. I mean, what's wrong with people that sophmoric, narcissistic, self-destructive behaviour's considered normal? I mean, fuck, when The Onion's got you dead to rights, then maybe it's time to get a grip and grow up.

Then I get pissed at the rest of the world. People don't get so broken they need drugs to get off, or think so little of themselves that they risk their life, health, and safety for a quick lay without external help. And we, as a country, seem to have gone to a lot of trouble to make sure we break as many people as we can. "Fuck up the gay boy" seems like a national pastime in far, far too many places.

Then I end up wondering. Are we really, as a group, that busted? Or is it that we only notice the busted folks, while the rest of us are generally ignored? Is the problem that nobody but the broken are standing up and being noticed, so the only model of behavior's the broken one?

Posted by Dan at 03:22 PM | Comments (0)

August 17, 2002

Back to civilization

A family friend has a cottage on one of the lakes in NE Connecticut, so we packed everyone up to take a few days of rest and relaxation. 'Twas nice--the cottage is on an island, and lacking in pretty much all the 'standard' amenities. No running water, electricity, phone, indoor plumbing--we didn't even have a boat with a motor. (Rowing all the way) Had a gas fired stove, refrigerator, and lamps which worked well enough. (Okay, the gaslamps were a bit too hot to use what with the temps peaking in the mid-nineties)

There's a certain slow serenity you get when you don't have anything to push you faster. There's time to think about things, rather than just reacting, or running as fast as you can to keep up with things. It was nice. It also pointed out how little running to keep up is really worth--nothing to speak of happened while I was gone.

I noticed my schedule wrapped around really fast, much faster than I expected. Normally I go to bed around 4AM and get up around 11AM, which fits my work schedule. Well, without artificial lights I got yanked to a 7AM to 11PM schedule on the first day. That was disconcerting. Goes to show how much light affects sleep schedule. Or how mutable my schedule is. Something like that. I'll keep that in mind when it's time to whip my schedule around for YAPC::Europe this year.

It's also really weird to pad around in the kitchen in the dark and see a blue glow from under the fridge. Refrigeration devices shouldn't have pilot lights. There's just something really wrong about that. Cool, but wrong.

Oh, and something to keep in mind: sound travels very well over water at night. Do you really want the whole lake to hear

Yeah! Yeah! Oh, yeah! I'm ready, I'm read...what? It's already in?

Posted by Dan at 01:28 PM | Comments (0)

August 11, 2002

Yay, Dennis Leary

The Ref is on Encore right now. This is, I think, my absolute favorite movie of all time.

Posted by Dan at 10:34 PM | Comments (0)

August 10, 2002

Inadvertent fitness

While I've been trying to get in shape and lose the round edges (I could stand to drop between 15 and 20 pounds) what with the book and Parrot and all, I've not actually had any time to exercise. At best there's been the odd walk around with the kids, or a night here or there where I did a few pushups or something. Damned annoying, and it's been bothering me. (The fact that everyone's putting their YAPC and OSCON/TPF pictures up, and I look like a doofus in all of them isn't helping)

So this morning I stepped on the scale for the first time in weeks, and found I'd lost five pounds, which is a bit troubling. Not that I've dropped the weight--I'm glad to have it off. It's that I haven't done anything to justify it, no exercise to speak of. I can only presume my diet, which lately has been black coffee and sandwiches when I remember, isn't quite up to snuff. Gah.

Posted by Dan at 07:09 PM | Comments (0)

Why Dan should Not do hardware

So, the website's been a bit dodgy the past few days, bouncing up and down, because one of my DSL connections has been really flaky. Works sometimes, other times no joy. Rebooting the DSL modem sometimes fixed it, and other times, well, it didn't. This all started after the big thunderstorms that rolled through, so naturally I blamed it on the storms--either something got wet, or lightning toasted some component somewhere. Not My Problem.


Turns out that my hack job in wiring this all up initially (it's an old house, the wiring's lousy, and when they ran new cabling they cheated and ran the two phone lines over the two pairs in the one cable coming in. And backwards at that--the primary line's on the black/yellow pair, and the DSL (not the broken one, the other DSL line. No, don't ask, it's too geeky for words) on the red/green pair. Because the red/green were the original primary pair except the phone company screwed up with the original line and when they ran the second voice line it became the first and, well, it's a mess. And confusing. Anyway, the wiring where the line comes into the house is an absolute mess, with bare wires and junction boxes dangling all over the place.

That turned out to be the ultimate cause of the problem. One of the cats dislodged a precarious wire and, well, it was only partially connected. And last night it finally got bumped off all the way.

Now if I'd only done the sensible thing and looked at the wires the first time this happened...

Posted by Dan at 04:22 AM | Comments (0)

August 09, 2002

Whirlwind tour

Well, if things go well, it looks like my trip to europe's getting a bit bigger. In addition to the week in Zurich for the perl 6 mini-conference and a few days in Munich for YAPC::EU, I may do a quick speaking gig at the European Bioinformatics Institute on the way. Woohoo!

Now, if these speaking gigs actually paid, as opposed to being volunteer things. That'd be nicer, given that the kids have gotten used to eating and whatnot.

Posted by Dan at 01:51 PM | Comments (0)

August 08, 2002

New toy

Well, I found a new toy to do log posts with. It's Kung-Log, and we'll see how well it works out. (At the very least it uses Apple's spell-checking services, which is a Good Thing) I hope it works well--I don't want to have to bother firing up a web browser every time I want to make a log posting.

Posted by Dan at 02:33 PM | Comments (0)

August 06, 2002

Two down, thirteen to go

I just finished the second chapter of Programming Cocoa Applications with Perl, the book I'm writing for O'Reilly. It's horribly behind schedule, and today was the drop-dead "make two chapters" date. We'll see if they meet with my editor's approval. I hope so, since there's not much time to fix them if they don't...

Posted by Dan at 03:15 AM | Comments (0)

August 04, 2002

Mmmm... raspberry

Accidents can often lead to really tasty things. I went to make some chocolate chip cookies the other night, and found I was almost out of vanilla. While this is a problem that needs dealing with for other reasons (I tend to go through a lot of vanilla when I cook) it left me with something of a quandary--I had a partially mixed batch of cookie dough and no vanilla to speak of. That left me with two options, either pitch the dough or try something else. Since pitching was a distasteful thing, that left me digging through the cabinets to see what else was handy.

I've normally got a good supply of spices and flavorings on hand and, besides the odd thing I'm out of, I can put together pretty much anything I need to. A search turned up a few different mint extracts, some citrus (orange and tangerine) extracts, and some raspberry extract. Mint didn't seem right for what I was feeling, though it would've been OK with some extra chocolate in the batter, and the citrus just wasn't right.

So, it was off to finish with the raspberry extract. I threw some cocoa in the batter to add a light chocolate counterpoint and a little while later I had a damn good batch of cookies. Mmmm!

Next time, I think I'll give the mint a shot. That ought to be pretty tasty too.

Posted by Dan at 01:12 AM | Comments (0)

August 03, 2002

Free again

Well, as some folks know I was a grantee for The Perl Foundation for a while. Well, no more. The grant's done, and has been for a little while, so my official connection is down to "Grant Alumnus." More importantly, I don't have any responsibility for fundraising, tub thumping, or general shaking up the troops. Which is good, because I didn't like doing that. (It was my own idea, as we needed someone to do it. I just turned out not to be the right person for it)

I'm not completely done with Perl or Parrot, of course, and I'm certainly not leaving, huffy or not. There's still a lot to be done, and I'm gonna do my best to get it done. I'm just a perl civillian again, though.

Feels good. Someone else can deal with those headaches for a while.

Posted by Dan at 03:16 AM | Comments (1)

August 01, 2002

Dunning Done

Or so I hope at least. While I hate bugging people to cough up payment, it beats not being paid. Of course, now I get to see whether they were telling the truth about mailing the check out, but...

I hate living hand-to-mouth like this. Especially since I don't have any firm jobs lined up. Living off the results of past work doesn't last that long. In my case, about a month, if I'm lucky. There are leads, but nothing concrete yet. I hate that. As do the phone and power companies.

Posted by Dan at 03:44 PM | Comments (0)


I managed to surprise Elaine today. I don't think I've ever managed that one before.

Posted by Dan at 02:58 AM | Comments (0)