Tuesday, February 28, 2006

China reports desert getting smaller

China reports desert getting smaller
I think that's pretty amazing given all the reports of global warming, and desertification that tend to populate the headlines. Although it's a drop in the ocean compared to China's total desertification, at least they seem committed to reversing the trend.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Recruiters are delicate creatures

Sometimes I forget that IT recruiters don't quite have the same worldly experience that some of us have. My resume details my chequered past, and I have had to sanitise it a bit, so as not to possibly offend potential employers. There are two positions on my resume that have the place of work as "Confidential".

So I am at a recruitment office this morning, and this is the way it went, after the usual round of recruiter chit chat about roles and the company.

This recruiter asked me "Did you have to sign an NDA at these companies not to name them?"
To which I replied "One of them I did."
"What about the 2nd one that's marked confidential?"
"It was a porn company", I say unprepared for what is coming next.

Coffee squirts from her nose, all over her copy of my resume. "What were you doing there!" she spluttered.
"Well I wasn't stripping" I say wondering what the hell she thought an IT guy was doing there.
"OK well I think we should leave that one as confidential, and never mention it to anyone."
I agree with her, and can tell she wishes she hadn't asked. I don't think she'll never ask anyone that question ever again.

I only wish she'd asked me for more details. That's for another day though.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

RMS doesn't own my brain

RMS has another rant going on over at LinuxP2P which is nothing new, but, this time he's slamming the Creative Commons people because they offer choice. Well, because they offer some choices that he disagrees with, coupled with the fact he thinks everyone else is too stupid to understand and differentiate those choices.

I respect the technical work he's contributed to the Open Source arena, I use xemacs daily, I use gcc, I use gdb. But, what's inside my head, even once I type it into xemacs and compile it with gcc, still belongs to me Richard, and I do have the right to decide what happens to my thoughts, just as you have the right to decide what happens to yours. Even if they are expressed in the form of a computer programme, or a catchy song.

The whole notion that my thoughts are not my own, because they're not a physical object, or because they're easily duplicated is rubbish.

If you want to release your code under the GPL, that's your right, I respect your right to do it. When I modify and distribute GPL code, I respect the license.

Please respect the rights I have to decide what I do with my own thoughts, I respect yours.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Why do I never learn?

I don't often have fast food, but, today I went to McDonalds for the first time in a long time. I grabbed a quarter pounder. They've changed the size of the buns and patties. They now have a larger circumference, and a thinner patty. They also don't taste the same as they did say six months ago.

Of course an hour later it was running through me like a dose of the salts. Next time I think I'll just have a doner kebab d8)

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Zope Stuff

I'm currently revamping some of my code just to clean it up. I'm toying with the idea of porting a bunch of my current Zope projects to Zope3.

A lot of my projects use RDBMS, especially to Postgresql. The SQL support for Zope3 doesn't seem to be there yet though, and my stuff uses a customised, optimised SQL class. I don't particularly want to go through the optimisation stage again, especially not prematurely.

My ExternalFolder Product is also something I'd really like to port to Zope3, it allows you to pretty much map anything to a Zope Folder. An SQL Table, LDAP hierarchy, filesystem. I was toying with allowing you to map a zip file to a Folder, so you could simply navigate it through the web.

XUF is also something I should probably port, and that could probably use the shoddy SQL support currently in Zope3, but, radical changes to Auth stuff isn't something I like doing (and nor do my users), so that will probably have to wait until after support has stabilised. I also have to shore up the Active Directory support (I don't have a domain controller to test against any longer), and do a new release.

Since I'm unemployed at the moment, I'm thinking of doing a web-based game for Zope in my "spare" time, I've got a few ideas;
  • Port Stellar Crisis
  • A Tradewars Clone
  • A (non-graphical) Elite Clone using the 'Text Elite' code that was released.
Stellar Crisis might be good, but, the code is in Pike, and I don't particularly like porting Pike code to Python.