September 2002 Archives

DBI FAQ is Alive

DBI FAQ is back up.

50,000 and still counting

Wikipedia has over 50,000 articles. Wiki pedia is free community edit Encyclopedia and runs on a Wiki.

Wedding Etiquette

Don�t Be Rude: Part IV, Weddings lots of good tips in there for those with empending nuptuals and their attendies.

Coder Types

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Code and Personality
How to tell your personality type from your code.
Now if one were to look at the idea seriously, like the literary writing analysis to figure out one's personality and mental makeup.

Apache2 and Tomcat

Don't know mutch about BSD

The BSDs: Sophisticated, Powerful, and (Mostly) Free, a pretty good quick summary and history of the BSD varients.

Don't use that DIV

Taming Lists or how to use LI instead of DIV where appropiate. Have to confess to being a culprite of exxisve use of DIV.

Cheap Linux Laptops

What this country needs is a good $999 Linux laptop, most definately. When I have the disposiable funds my next computer purchase will most likely be a laptop and it would be nice to have a Linux laptop as a valid option. Something to add would be brainless Bluetooth and WiFi with above mentioned laptop.

XSLT AbiWord to HTML

A command line app written in Java which, using the Xalan XML parser and an XSLT stylesheet, allows you to convert native AbiWord, (*.abw), files into HTML pages. Features include being able to convert a single file or batch convert a directory of files and turning http:// web address references into anchor tags under HTML. For more information see the README and CHANGELOG files.
Kinda cool, but as another idea how about a MovableType plug-in that takes a .abw file upload and translates it to embeded (X)HTML?

Wiki .EXE

WikiServer is a simple webserver Wiki as an .exe, source code provided. Probably the easiese Wiki for Windows users, from the getting something useful up and running prespective.

Cocoon Resource - Your Guide to Apache Cocoon This site is intended to provide tutorials, how-to's, best practise guides and other information not covered by the official Cocoon documentation. It is directed mainly to new Cocoon users, but if you're working with Cocoon for some time you may find some useful information here, too. Looks like a good resource of Cocoon is your thing.

Friday Five: Relaxiation

  1. What are your favorite ways to relax and unwind? Taking a walk or doing the dishes, I'm strange that way.
  2. What do you do the moment you get home from work/school/errands? Change clothes or go to the bathroom.
  3. What are your favorite aromatherapeutic smells? Vanilla
  4. Do you feel more relaxed with a group of friends or hanging out by yourself? Usually more relaxed by myself, though some types of hanging out is better.
  5. What is something that you feel is relaxing but most people don't? Doing the dishes.
the friday five

Do Not Call

The FTC's Proposal to Create a National "Do Not Call" Registry with a list of several states that are doing the "Do Not Call List" on their own. Kentucky Attorney General's No Call List, doesn't go into affect until January 15, 2003.

Java Text Search for Websites

Jakarta Lucene
Jakarta Lucene is a high-performance, full-featured text search engine written entirely in Java. It is a technology suitable for nearly any application that requires full-text search, especially cross-platform.
It might help tig with his search problem at work.

The Dancing Penguins

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original location
It is amazing what one will post because they have a little sister who really likes penguins.

Joe's Birthday

Happy Birthday to the king of the palace, a.k.a. the upstairs of the slum. Hope you have a good one Joe.

Lack of a good book

Went to a Barnes & Noble last night with the hope of finding a computer book for enjoyment reading, yea I know I'm weird that way. There was a big problem though, nothing there looked interesting. Well there was one exception, the 3 volume set of The Art of Computer Programming by Donald Kunth but didn't really want to pony up the $150 price right now. I think part of the problem is the preponderance of those 1,000 page tomes that really say very little, "Learn X in Y days", "The complete unabridged guide to absolutely everything and anything about Z", I hope you get the point.

Now this got me to thinking about what I am really looking for in a computer book. First I listed the "good" books and noticed a couple of things. The list was surprisingly short. Second that they seemed to fall into 3 categories Reference, Page Turners and Just Cool.

Reference Page Turners Just Cool References are the must haves, books that almost always end up next to the computer and in the book bag to take to work and have at home. In most cases the occasional reference is just as good, usually better, when online or digital than the print counterpart. Online allows for search ability, a must for good reference. Also online usually means more up to date. As a genre of computer books this one is probably dead unless one is lacking in a decent network connection.

Page Turners are the ones that are worth reading cover to cover again and again. These were more paradigm types of works. Something that changes the way one thinks about using a computer. There are definitely more of these than what I listed but if something is to change one's thinking it needs to be presented in a short mentally manageable format.

The Just Cool are just that, there were just not enough of these books, only one. The Panda books use of photos makes it something that even has life as a coffee table piece after the contents are no longer useful.

So what did I learn?

Well reference is dead. With the advent of the ambiguous network and great search tools print reference material only serves it's usefulness when one can't get access to the net. Very few thick books are anything but reference.

The thick books that are not reference generally have too much to say in too many words to really be useful. Maybe more Thin Books would be a start, who knows?

What started out pretty simple, no computer books for fozbaca, has gotten quite long. Time to get back to where I started.

What I would really like to see is more thin books, something of the 200 pages or less. Drop the reference material. Something that is introducing new paradigms, methodologies and the like. Focus must be on the practical how this information is useful and worth wasting time on reading. Finally it should not be like a Unix Man page. Something that has a little life around and behind the words.

Nice News Aggregation

NewsAggregation over at with code provided for one of your own.

Mac Wallpapers

Lots of nice wallapers over at MacDesktops.

Friend of a Friend

FOAF-a-matic -- Describe yourself in RDF, I did it for but not really sure what it wil become.

Why the Middle East Situation?

There are a couple of good articles from two usually opposing blog pundits, Imperialists by necessity? and Who is our enemy? about what is really going on in the Middle East and how to solve the problems. I'll leave agreement or disagreement to the reader, or feel free to comment.

Etch A Sketch Art

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Etch A Sketch Art, un fuck'n believable!

ASP.NET without IIS

Hosting ASP.NET without IIS.

Merging Swing and JSP the answer?

Another Take on Swing and Java's Success. Reminds me of something engel was playing around with that took swing apps and ran them as JSP. The problem was that it looked like someone was soing a poor port of a desktop app to the web, but the idea is still sound and hughly benefical.

Embeding Web Servers in Perl

Embedding Web Servers in Perl apps.

Free Mozilla Book

Full text of Creating Applications with Mozilla, much thanks go to the authors and publisher making this great resource avialable to potential Mozilla platform developers.
[via scott andrew]

Testable GUI

The User Interface Validator Pattern A design pattern for user interface validations that treats the validation rules as data making it easily configurable and maintainable Intresting idea, need to read further.

CVS & Configuration Management

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CVS Best Practices
This article explores some of the best practices that can be adopted while using CVS as the configuration management tool in your software projects.
And Software Configuration Management for Open Source Projects by the same fellow
This HOWTO discusses the applicability of Software Configuration Management to Open Source Projects. It explores various models of Software Configuration Management for Open Source Projects of various sizes.
Both look to be intresting reads.

Objective C

Objective-C: the More Flexible C
An introduction to Objective-C for programmers familiar with C or any other OOP language.
Whenever I can finally scrounge up the cash for a Mac Objective-C is definately in my future.

It isn't about gender

| 1 Comment comments on Women are better managers? Saying that the article misses the real point, focusing on deliverables happen. Male and female managers are both equally horrible at achieving deliverables, add working completed deliverables. I'm betting part of it has to do with a lack of delivering as a focus from management training. Anecdote, I only had one business class in college. It had the majority of grade coming from a "team" project. Everybody research part of a topic, wrote a group paper then present the findings to the rest of the class. There were 6 teams and only one completed the whole assignment on time yet the class GPA was 3.3. Or as an uncle of mine who has been a mainframe programmer for 30+ years would say, "It used to be that nothing shipped unless it was flawless, today we ship everything early and but nothing works."

Java Rant

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Java, Language of Tomorrow nice rant on Java the myth vs. the reality.

Debian Jobs

Debian Job Pages, Debian specific jobs.

Babylon 5 DVD Update

Babylon 5 - The Complete First Season
List Price: $99.98
Our Price: $74.99
Availability: This item will be released on November 5, 2002.
DVD Features:
  • Introduction and audio commentary by series creator J. Michael Straczynski
  • 22 episodes
  • The making of Babylon 5
  • Widescreen anamorphic format
  • Number of discs: 6
A bit pricy but definately worth it. I hope the audio commentary is for eacy and every episode.

Mandela Interviewed

Mandela is interviewed about his, The U.S.A. Is a Threat to World Peace, comment.
I gather you are particularly concerned about Vice President Cheney?
Well, there is no doubt. He opposed the decision to release me from prison [laughs]. The majority of the U.S. Congress was in favor of my release, and he opposed it. But it�s not because of that. Quite clearly we are dealing with an arch-conservative in Dick Cheney.
Which isn't one of the more pretinant comments but still quite an ironic situation. in iCal

Per the info over at Disobey Nonsense Network is now avialable to iCal import/syndication/subscription, which is really vCalendar and should work in Mozilla Calendar. Now engel can you give this a check see and maybe send a screenshot of it works.

fozbaca in ics/vCalendar

Cuthulu Search

Cthuugle Ph'nglui Search Fhtagn! think Google for Lovecraft works and stuff online.

Friday Five: School

  1. What was/is your favorite subject in school? Why? Math, Computer Science mostly because they were problem solving types of classes and thus not boring.
  2. Who was your favorite teacher? Why? Mrs. Smith, Computer Science teacher in High school. She just continually went above and beyond the job to do what students needed.
  3. What is your favorite memory of school? Having a "first kiss" at a school dance while Moni Moni as preformed by Billy Idol played and students sang the alternative lyrics. It was just such a surreal experience.
  4. What was your favorite recess game? Climbing the flag pole or the school.
  5. What did you hate most about school? Most of the other kids, spent most of school thinking I was one sentence away from getting beat up.
the friday five



Happy Birthday Del

Just remember your 21st, or more importantly the day after your 21st. Oh, send me your address have something to send ya.

Blogrolling Locally

Daily Crawl is a set of CGI scripts that allow you to track updates to a list of weblogs that you read though the update list at
Now to make it a MovableType Plugin.

It is about the Culture stupid

Just a general note so I remember. It is about the CULTURE stupid. There is much more to say but maybe for a later time.

Perl Wiki Weblog

e_con | a Perl Wiki system with a Weblog feature. It creates a new page for the day, 2002-09-09 for example.

Wiki with Blog

Simpleface Weblog is doing a pretty Wiki way of the Weblog, take the new pages and present them in blog fashion. Some food for thought for additions for MiniWili.

Java Web Developer Need to Know

Wanna Be a Java Web Programmer?
  1. JSP Standard Tag Libraries (JSTL), Jakarta Taglibs Project and Other Libraries
  2. Apache's Struts Project
  3. EXtensible HyperText Markup Language (XHTML)
  4. Dynamic HTML (DHTML)
  5. Applet Programming
  6. HTTP Protocol
  7. Enterprise JavaBeans (EJB)
  8. Java Naming and Directory Interface (JNDI)
  9. Other Tools

It's the Culture

Why Arabs Lose Wars as told by a retired U.S. Army colonel involved with Arabic Military. Kinda answers why the Israelies have consistently been able to handles themselves so well against greater numbers in battle. Now for extra credet, for those that read the article, what does this have to say for the non military interactions between Western Culture and the Arabic Culture?

They have Posters

New Apache Docs Site

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Larry Wall on God Discussions

I expect a good deal of the problem is that you are busy disbelieving a different God than the one I am busy believing in.
Larry Wall from his Slashdot QA

And I think this one helps to highlight why I like Perl so much, the bolded is the reason why I love technology.
And this creativity is intended to be transitive. We are expected to be creative. And we're expected to help others be creative.

And that leads us back (finally) to the last part of your question, how all this relates to Perl.

Perl is obviously my attempt to help other people be creative. In my little way, I'm sneakily helping people understand a bit more about the sort of people God likes.

State of the Windows X86 PC


I have attempted to give the Windows X86 PC industry a report card on key issues faced from watching my recently retired parents experience in buying an OEM PC this past summer. I expect their experience to be similar from stories I have heard.

Amount of standard RAM: F
Standard PC still ships below realistic system minimum needs, 128 MB RAM too low. System should boot out of the box without needing virtual ram.

Third party hardware suppliers: F
When attempting to make a simple stick of ram addition the wholesalers were entirely inadequate for any except the experienced PC hardware person. Actually they are pretty bad for the experienced.

OEM after purchases upgrades: F
I have never experienced such difficulties when trying to spend money, especially given the current economic conditions. It took 4 phone calls and once being transfered to a voice mail box of someone who no longer worked at the company to make a simple memory upgrade. At one point the sales person swore that memory didn't exist for the motherboard, even though the machine shipped with a stick of RAM.

Ready to run out of the box: F
System received had numerous patches and service packs that should have been applied at the OEM. There is no excuse for a system to need patches more than a week old. As a very poor alternative the OEM should ship a CDROM that contains all the patches, but this is a bad alternative.

OEM documentation: F
Wholly inadequate to useless. First what limited instructions were present were borderline useless for any but the experienced. Second most of the specs for existing hardware or replacement hardware were incorrect.

"Bundled" ISP: F
Currently almost all OEM PCs come with the free 6 months of AOL and/or MSN, probably as a tie-in service like DellNet with MSN. In either case the services require unnecessary information at initial account creation and attempted to trick the user into making purchases through deceptive placement of dialogues. After the accounts are created the attempt at branding whole confuses most users. Rather providing a clean gateway to the Internet and differentiate through quality and prices of the value adds they go so far as to obscure other providers of said services like search engines.

Overall Grade: F
For all the improvements in touted in the industry they still have not came close to requirements to really expect any but those required to participate in the computing revolution. I would not recommend a Windows X86 PC to any that have not already acquired substantial experience, say through work or school, or had a very definite and real need. Honestly for most a computer and related services are a waste of $1,000+.


I'm looking for comments on this one for any and all. I deliberately kept Apple out of the rant due to lack of recent experience.

Freedoms Lost

The Troubling New Face of America by Jimmy Carter speaking against what we are losing in the name of security.
... developing from a core group of conservatives who are trying to realize long-pent-up ambitions under the cover of the proclaimed war against terrorism.

Dave on 9/11

Dave has some good Lessons of 9-11 on the bottom of the page. But this just really stuck out:
I think it's that God doesn't think we're as important as we do.

Smarts Test

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WebDAV meet Postgres

mod_dav_psql is a webdav interface to PostGreSQL databases. It facilitates the browsing of tables, columns, rows, functions, languages, sequences, and other database objects thru any webdav enabled client.
Now that looks like a pretty cool idea.

ewok CMS

ewok is a web content management system (CMS), written in Perl (Embperl)...
Would have been real handy back in the dayn at Merilus.

XSL Tutorial

From XML To...Anything -- the Extensible Stylesheet Language

Peanuts Poll

Muppet Test

You are Kermit!
Though you're technically the star, you're pretty mellow and don't mind letting others share the spotlight. You are also something of a dreamer.

Gee would have thought fozbaca would be a fozzie. Oh well.

GUI Python

Graphical User Interface with Python a review of all the GUI options with Python code.

Linux and Photos

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