Thursday, December 29, 2011

A Taste of Linux...

About a fortnight ago before the holiday break, I finally got a Linux box set up at work with the specific version of Ubuntu that the project product would operate in. Among other considerations for this setup, was the fact that this project already had a fair amount of code, and much of it using some old/obsolete versions of packages which are practically impossible to easily get for Windows or that were difficult to compile without a lot of porting work first.

Now, although I'd worked with Linux (Fedora) in the COSC labs before (and previously with a flaky partial install of Cygwin on an old computer at home), this would probably have been my first real Linux box where I could actually go through and play with setting things up (i.e. /me has admin rights). Here are some thoughts/findings so far...

Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas

A belated Merry Christmas to all! 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Noo.... not another shake

Jeepers! We've just been hit by another sudden jolt this afternoon, a few minutes ago. It's been a good few months since the last significant event that I felt!

It went on for a half a minute or so, and was followed by a few smaller aftershocks in quick succession.

Thankfully everything is fine (though some things did get knocked over). More details later...

- there is the constant sound of sirens coming from the mall, and heavy traffic moving around.
- Geonet reports it was a 5.8 quake out at Lyttleton. Crap, this means we're going to have a few more sleepless nights for a while again.

EDIT 2: (3:28pm)
We've just had a second, even more destructive quake - it felt much worse than any of the others so far. Deja vu all over again (June 13th).

Was watching some cabinets just swaying violently, stuff clinking around, and the house jelloing for a while afterwards.

After over an hour, Geonet now reports this as a 6.0 @ 6km deep. Gah!

Garden Flowers and Hungry Beaks

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Strawberry Platter

This year is turning out to be quite a bumper season for the strawberries in our garden. These were all harvested the other day...

PyGTK - Collapsible Panels

Mwahahaha... last night I finally managed to coerce PyGTK into giving me collapsible panels that looked the way I wanted.

Avoiding Degenerative Coding Practices - My Coding Style Guide (C-Style)

I'm quite pedantic about many aspects about how code looks. After all, you're going to be looking at, and editing it quite a bit, so it does pay to spend some time making it more pleasant in the long run.

This particular guide applies to C-like languages. I have another one for Python-code which shares some similarities, but also some differences.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Diagramming Tools - A call to action!

It has been bothering me for a while now, especially after each and every frustrating, multi-hour-long session: the world's diagramming tools suck. Big time.

It's really a wonder that after over two decades and countless billions of dollars being pumped into research and development, that no-one has really managed to create a diagramming tool which can match the immediacy or flexibility of pen and paper, let alone bring anything "new" to the table in terms of "enhancing human intelligence".

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Moar Pretty Solar Garden Lights

After seeing how beautiful the two birdie garden lights were, we decided to get some more. Unfortunately, there were no more of the birdie ones, though perhaps that wasn't such a bad thing after all ;)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Sunday, December 4, 2011

When the Santa parade comes to a street near you...

As a result of the quakes we've had here in Christchurch, this year the Santa Parade had to be moved from its usual route down Colombo St in the CBD to none other than the main road passing by a few blocks away from home.

Although the weather forecasts had predicted heavy rain for today, the sunny weather we've been having for the past week held until after the parade was over.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Link Dump - Some interesting articles...

Recently I've been doing quite a bit of reading instead of active coding in the evenings (the product of having spent the rest of the day being productive on other projects I guess). So this afternoon, on a warm sunny summer day with a slightly overheating computer (post compile), here are a list of interesting links...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

PyGTK Documentation Rant

So, continuing on my series about PyGTK, today I'm going to be discussing one of those issues which every new users of some tool or toolset comes across (hopefully, if it even exists): documentation.

Fortunately, in this case, they DO have some documentation. Heck, they've got some tutorials and a reference manual. On the surface it's all well and good, until you start running into a few things which start to become gradually more annoying as time goes by.