Tag Archives: work

Anything happening at work

Open format?

So, Microsoft intends to submit its Office 12 file formats to ECMA as a proposed standard.

I took a look at the files and they’re in binary format. I thought that for most office applications, especially word processing, we were leaving behind the world of binary encoded formats and moving to XML?

Given the fact how the world is massing behind the Open Document initiative this move of Microsoft’s seems to be nothing but PR and marketing. Especially given how the OASIS Open consortium and the Open Document community have now pushed this forward to become an ISO standard.


Been looking at 3Ware and Areca SATA RAID controller cards. Looks like very decent stuff and best of all: FreeBSD support.

Combined with a Chenbro chassis makes for a nice RAID system with good cooling. The Chenbro stuff comes with enclosures to put your normal disks in, so no need for ordering expensive ‘specially prepared’ hard disks from $VENDOR. Just order your regular 200 GB Barracuda SATA disk, put them in the enclosures and place them in the chassis.

Bugzilla additional database support

I’ve been using Bugzilla for a while now for the TenDRA Project. I am quite happy with it. Right now I use it on a MySQL database, but everybody that really knows me knows I prefer PostgreSQL over MySQL because of the real database features it has.
To counter any knee-jerk reactions, no, MySQL is not bad, I am just used to features real databases provide (views, stored procedures, etc) and once you are used to that, MySQL feels, …, inadequate.

Bugzilla has, in the last year, been working hard on making the program database independent.

See the following URLs for developer details on progress:

Bugzilla PostgreSQL meta bug
Bugzilla Oracle meta bug
Bugzilla Sybase meta bug
Bugzilla Firebird meta bug

This is what I also emailed (the URLs that is) to the authors of IEEE’s Software magazine column about Open Source. They wrote that Bugzilla is not database independent, and while that is undisputable (aside from the ‘hackish’ port to PostgreSQL on the side, which I also worked on) there is significant work being done behind the scenes on making it database independent.

Adware/spyware, Windows, blegh

After having spent about 3-4 hours last night fixing up my sweetie’s PC through a VNC session I must say that Windows by itself must be one of the least desirable operating systems to keep developing for.

Aside from its braindead APIs (I am even doing driver writing, so hush) it is basically inviting malicious people to abuse a given PC. Install with terminal services on by default, refusing to allow the user to throw away files the OS designates as ‘important to the operating system’. Sure, and which files do you think a trojan or virus will target first? Not to mention having old style (on Windows 95/98/ME installs) win.ini and such files parsed for LOAD= lines. How on earth are users even supposed to know what to look for in the registry?

Furthermore, I am getting SO pissed off by software developers that think bundling ad-ware with their software is their ticket to revenue. We should, collectively, boycot such developers. I mean, if I can develop open source software and not get ANY revenue from it, why are they being so focused on putting ad stuff in? Heck, it’s a prime attack vector for machine hijacking (and we all as the world collectively wondering why the Internet might melt down).

Basically from a operating system developer as well as an application developer I can only conclude more and more how Windows and most of its software are flawed by design. And unless this attitude changes, and I am not talking about DRM or anything, I foresee Windows killing itself.

X can suck hard at times

And to the question why people still use Windows try setting up your X environment to properly support MathML with Firefox.

Truly, using new fonts within X is a black art still reminiscent of dark and medieval times when we did not know better. I thought we would have progressed that stage by now.

From a user perspective Windows definitely wins hands down in this, drag a file to a Fonts folder, done.
No, X wants us to use crazy incantations of mkfontdir, mkfontscale, fc-cache, ttmkfdir, xset with various fp options and hope xlsfonts shows the font you are after.

Users do NOT want to be bothered with foundries, weights, encoding types, and what not. They just want to add a font, select it in their favourite application and go: “owww, pretty!”

Is that, anno 2004, too much to ask?


Beware of the fury of the patient man…

Some of these days just start whacked.

Manager asks me to overlook a CV of the guy who’s going to replace me. Sure, no problem. So I find the guy alright and now I have to help in interviewing him? Uhhh, this is funny. Not that usual in the Netherlands to do this…

Bored out of my mind, thankfully I can put the time to good use. Almost up to date on all episodes of Uzumaki Naruto.

Right now converting Amos’ script from elisp to Python. Going nicely thus far.

The weather makes me want to put on some Muse or likewise bands… Although I was listening to UK Punjabi remixes in the car on my way to work…