Sunday, August 28, 2005

Argh, having to learn java again

After managing to keep myself employed for almost the last decade without having to program in Java, a project at work means that the end is nigh. Pulled the "Teach yourself Java in 21 days" out of storage and noted that it was published in 1996. So Java and I have kept our distance for a long time. Also means I need to get myself up to speed with what has happened to Java over the period. In the end, I just need to learn enough to embed Jython 2.1 within an existing Java front-end so I can access it's API, well that's the theory anyway. Have spent the weekend consuming lot's of articles from the web and playing in eclipse. Have lot's of respect for what "real" Java programmers are doing out there, but hard to get back into writing lot's of code to achieve something. Python has spoilt me.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

OSDC Proposal Submitted

Due to the "massive" response from my readers (thanks Richard) I went with WSGI and submitted a proposal. As of last night, it looks like they have 55 proposals of a wide and interesting range of topics. It would also appear there are more Python than Perl proposals, but I had my rose coloured glasses on, so I may be mistaken.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Goodbye Windows, Welcome Linux to my home

At work I use Windows XP as my workstation because that's what our clients use to run our frontend. Most of our development work is done on servers running Linux and truthfully the most used program on my XP box is ssh. But at home, I have always run a Microsoft OS. Of late, I have been questioning why. The home machine is used for paying the bills via the Internet, reading email, browsing the web, updating this blog and the odd bit of wordprocessing. In the past, it was also used to play games, but the XBox has taken over that role. Based on the last couple of months, the home machine seems to spend most of it's time downloading service packs or the lastest anti-virius update. So I decided to give Linux a chance to prove that it could do my home tasks. Using a "Live" CD version of Ubuntu 5.04, I have survived two weeks without having to see a Microsoft logo. Another interesting thing I have discovered is thanks to GMail etc, that I haven't needed any local hard disk storage.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Database design for newbies

Found this whitepaper on database design by Ian Bicking & Brian Moloney. A good explanation of Dr Codd's rules but in a language a newbie could understand.

How fast a year goes by, OSDC decisions again...

It doesn't seem that long ago that I was considering presenting a paper at OSDC 2004. But I did, and here we are a year later in the same situation. I really enjoyed last year's conference, both giving my presentation, meeting many interesting people, and deep discussions over many beers each night. I want to submit a proposal for a paper but still haven't decided what I want to talk about. Currently I have narrowed it down to 3 topics:
  • WSGI - Present a review of where it currently is and describe/show how it is being used to create a framework-neutral set of components.
  • A Smart Client using Python - Microsoft is pushing 2 types of user interface for an n-tier application, a web client and what they refer to as a "smart" client. In M$'s case, it is written using WinForms and other .NET technologies. I want to produce something similar using Python. Have been playing with both wxPython & PyXPCOM/XULRunner before deciding on the UI toolkit to use.
  • ActiveGrid - This is an open source framework for building Web 2.0 using LAMP. Think it's more a candiate for a lighting talk.

Will have to make up my mind soon, as proposals have to be in by Friday 19 August.