Geek, and proud of it

Finding Harmony


It’s been a while since I’ve had the opportunity to just sit and play with tech, but I’ve had some Microchip PIC32MX microcontrollers sitting around doing nothing and I thought it was time to give them a run. (more…)

HOWTO: Use jQuery/DataTables with Perl/Catalyst/DBIC


(I offered to write an entry for the Catalyst Advent Calendar based on a private wiki article I use, and wanted to break the 600+ day blogging dry spell!)

Web user interfaces have come a long way since the original publish/view model of the Internet – these days, people expect interactivity and interfaces that let them get the information they want with the minimum of effort. JavaScript libraries such as jQuery have made it easier to develop cross-platform, interactive interfaces, but tables of data have still lagged behind a bit. There is a jQuery plugin that adds interactivity to tables of data in HTML – The DataTables plugin allows for server-side processing of table options such as ordering, filtering and pagination, leading to much smoother feeling data tables.


New Year, new look, new stuff


So, it’s 2010 (however you like to pronounce it), it’s out with the old and in with the new! I must confess to having lived in a bit of a bubble for a while, not venturing out of my comfort zone, and so things got a little stale. No longer. (more…)

I’ve been working in Flash – is that ironic, Alanis?


People who know me are familiar with my dislike for Flash, so for me to be doing some work in it might come as a surprise.

Another week in the code mines (almost) complete


It’s Friday again, which draws another week to a close.

This week, I have been mostly hacking away at Freecycle stuff – I made the mistake of finessing my complexity estimates for the current Sprint down, so the total amount was reasonable. As such, I’ve had to do more work than I probably continue to maintain, but in short bursts it’s actually quite nice to stretch the metaphorical muscles a bit. A rewrite/code cleanup turned out to be a lot more work than I expected, and this really put a strain on the deadline. I would have had to do it sometime, and clearing technical debt rarely gets any attention when users are requesting features, so having to get almost half of that section done this fortnight is good progress. I feel guilty at promising to deliver certain things at certain times (especially as I effectively set my own deadlines) and failing to achieve that – I let the users down, and I let myself down.

So, with all the Freecycle fun, I haven’t managed to make any progress on any of my own projects. Never mind.

Was good to go swimming this week with the kids – Alfie’s really taken to the water now, which was a bit of a worry in the past. It’s approaching harvest time at the garden farm – carrots and tomatoes, onions look almost ready. Something keeps munching Alfie’s pumpkins before they can grow, which is a bit upsetting for him. 🙁

Got my parents coming up tomorrow – off for an all-you-can-eat buffet and spend some time with the (grand)kids. Hopefully Sunday will be a quiet one. 🙂

And, of course, I’m sure I’ll be doing yet more Freecycle work – just keep getting sucked in whenever I go online. 🙂

Increase hard disk capacity – just add a sticker!


While I was waiting for a compile/unit test to finish, I noticed that one of the failed hard disks (a Maxtor MaxLine Plus II 250Gb ATA/133 HDD) I was using as a paperweight had two stickers on it. Having nothing better to do, I pulled the top one off, just to see what the changes were. (more…)

Packages I’m loving: mrxvt


I use console applications – a lot. When it comes to running multiple programs on a computer, GNU screen is essential, but I find myself connecting to multiple servers and running GNU screen in each. It’s possible to run GNU screen under GNU screen, but it can get messy getting the keyboard shortcuts right. I needed a tabbed terminal program.


Avoiding the CBL


Having recently been battling to keep some servers out of the CBL, I decided it was time to get strict on what the email servers were accepting, so I created an Exim ACL to reject non-RFC2821 compliant HELO/EHLO strings. (more…)

Spam doesn’t pay?


I wiped 189 junk accounts from one of my sites, and my Google AdSense earnings have dropped through the floor.

Ethically good, financially bad. 🙁

This side up…


I downloaded a copy of the latest Ubuntu release so I could install it on a VM and give it a test.

I thought the extra half-gig of disk space on my laptop could be better used for something else, and I’ve got a massive stack of CD-Rs, and I could probably use it on a physical machine, so I burned the ISO to disc and filed it away.

I came to use the disc today – guess who had written on the wrong side… 🙁

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