Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Soundmanager2 - A neat project that has a Flash application that you can talk to with Javascript.
A yummy sounding Pad Thai for beginners, from my friend Meg's blog.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A definition of closures - A good article where they talk about what closures are and if they should add them to Java.

I recently learned about closures through Ruby, and have gotten really into them, trying to really get a good grasp on them. I've started to read the Lambda the Ultimate... series of papers. So cool to read about the history of programming, wow, there is so much excellent research from the past that we need to incorporate into our current programming practices, and with faster computers, we should really start looking back to things that were abandoned because computers were too slow back then.

A great example of a language that reaches back to give us great stuff is Ruby. Ruby is just a beautiful language, so powerful, expressive and elegant.
Relationship of Charge to pH
The Chemistry of Amino Acids - Aspartate
Chemical Nature of the Amino Acids
Titration curves for amino acids

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Installing Apache 2.2 and PHP5. Mmmm, PHP rocks.

I know, I know, Ruby on Rails. Well, both Ruby and PHP rock.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Paper Prototyping - Prototype your websites on paper first.

I do this all the time, I have a big newsprint pad and a whole bunch of different coloured big Crayola felt markers, and when I was designing both and my other websites, I used this pad of paper extensively. I really like the big pad of newsprint, first because it's really cheap, and second because you can just fold back a page after you've drawn on it, which gives you a nice way to organize the pages by history.

I also use it extensively for flowcharting and writing code, for doing this one complicated AJAX project, with two servers and clients that could each be in a number of states, it was really invaluable to figure out what needed to go where.
Installing Apache 2.2.3 and PHP5


./configure --prefix=/usr/local/apache \
--enable-deflate \


./configure \
--with-apxs2=/usr/local/apache/bin/apxs \
--with-mysql \
--prefix=/usr/local/apache/php \
--with-config-file-path=/usr/local/apache/php \
--enable-force-cgi-redirect \
--disable-cgi \
--with-zlib \
--with-gettext \

PostgreSQL and PHP5
Capistrano and CakePHP in Perfect Harmony - mmm, Capistrano and CakePHP, sweet. I really like Capistrano, it's a very nice way to deploy web applications, I use it all the time with my Ruby on Rails projects, and it's so nice to know that I can use it with CakePHP as well.

CakePHP manual
PHP on WikiBooks
PHP Manual
Vancouver PHP 2007 Conference - See you there!

BDD in Rails
rspec and rails install
rspec examples

Monday, January 22, 2007

Do you PHP? - an article about the history of PHP by Rasmus Lerdorf.

You know, I love Ruby on Rails, but PHP has got a lot to offer as well. I'm currently learning PHP and am liking it a lot. I think that the more languages you know, the better.

After all, inside Emacs, it's all good.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

I accidentally typed "ddate", ah, good times, remembering the good discordian times:

Today is Setting Orange, the 20th day of Chaos in the YOLD 3173
>Why Ruby is an acceptable Lisp

Over the last week, I've been spending my evenings reading up on closures in Ruby, and have finally got a handle on them. They're really powerful and quite beautiful, but for an old C programmer like myself, they take a bit to wrap your head around them. I would recommend the Ruby Pickaxe book and the Ruby Cookbook.
Freezing Rails - How to include the Rails codebase into an application so that you can be sure you're running a specific version of Rails.

This becomes very important now that they've just released version 1.2 of Rails. I'm migrating everything to 1.2 immediately, and so far have only run into one small issue with an Observer not being found.
A Font Primer for Linux
Quick guide to creating RSS feeds - Or you could just use a Ruby on Rails plugin...

Friday, January 19, 2007

More Perly goodness:

time - my $now = localtime time;
mkdir in Perl - mkdir("newdir", 0755) || die "Cannot mkdir newdir: $!";
push - Push a value onto an array
Does a file exist? Is it executable? - if (-e $file && -x $file)
process management
Getopt::Std - Standard options, like -v. For long options use Getopt::Long
Examples of Getopt
Comparing values
make sure to use "my" in subroutines
Perl Regexp cheat sheet
Perl examples of regexps
String selections in Perl
More regexps in Perl
Perl string functions
Array Manipulation in Perl
Perl arrays
picking up Perl - Arrays
More arrays with Perl - print "the size of the hash: " . keys( %wavelength ) . "\n";
Perl associative arrays - $ages{"The Queen Mother"};# Returns 108
Fluid UIs - Interesting.

Comet McNaught, wow, so amazing! It's going to be a great 2007, this is a wonderful omen. And almost my birthday!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

My friend Nham from Vancouver has a website with some really nice pictures on it, go check it out.
I've been helping someone with their Perl scripts, so after about 10 months of only working with Ruby, I'm doing some Perl hacking recently.

It's very interesting, switching languages like this, and Perl is definitely a different beast than Ruby. Ruby is like a mix of Lisp and Eiffel with some Perl-y goodness mixed into the cake batter. They're all excellent languages, and I'm not sure which one I like the best, but I sure do love that Ruby, it just feels so right.

File globbing in Perl
Reading files with Perl
Environments with Perl
Running system commands with Perl
More running external programs in Perl
Perl FAQ Part 5 - External Program Interaction
Subroutines in Perl
Modules in Perl
Functions in Perl

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Eskimo words for snow - I was surprised, the old story about how the Inuit have many more words for snow than we do looks like it's just an urban legend. They do have a few more words for snow than in English, but only about 5 extra words.

A few neat extra words though are:

(6) Fallen snow on the ground
aniu [NS] 'snow on ground'

(7) Soft, deep fallen snow on the ground
muruaneq 'soft deep snow'

(9) Fresh fallen snow on the ground
nutaryuk 'fresh snow' [HBC]

(10) Fallen snow floating on water
qanisqineq 'snow floating on water'

And in a really neato turn of events, it looks like Norwegian might have way more words for snow than the Inuit do! What a huge list on this page. Go Norse!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Wow, Hawaii was so beautiful! I had a great time there, really great, it was such a welcome relief from the cold of the winter here on the west coast of Canada, just this soothing ocean breeze, so gentle and warm. I even got a bit of a suntan. :)

Here's the view from our hotel room, the first room was at the Ewa end of Waikiki, which means East when you are in Honolulu. Diamond Head means West, towards the Diamond Head volcano, and Ewa is East, towards Ewa Beach.

Each morning I would get up early, before the rest of the family and would go down for an early morning yoga stretch and pushups, and then would walk barefoot way down Waikiki beach.

It was so beautiful, the water was so warm, pure and clear. I took a zoomed in photo of the water coming in, I got the photo, but I also got wet, about 2 seconds after this photo was taken.

Imagine me here, barefoot, in cutoffs, sandals in hand.

You get a really nice view of the extinct Diamond Head volcano when walking along Waikiki beach.

One morning, I hiked up Diamond Head and took a picture of Waikiki beach.