Codeworks::code and stuff


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Wednesday, July 16, 2003

Programming languages galore. Need a cross platform , easy to learn language ?

Try Euphoria.
New php based blogging software. This looks kewl.

Checkout the features :

# Smarty centric. That is bBlog uses smarty for templates, plugins, and as much as possable other parts of Smarty.
# Template driven with easy templates.
# Plugins to change the way text is formatted, and to provide other features.
# Metaweblog compatible xml-rpc server ( so you can use w.bloggar ).
# Included plugins:

* Threaded comments
* BBCode
* Textile
* Calendar
* Blogroll
* Referers
* ... more to come

# OO style coding, to be fast, clean ( easy to modify ) and secure.
# Nice Looking :)

And it does look really nice :)

Monday, July 14, 2003

Its been some time. Somewhere less then a month. I apologise for the cob webs, and please don't mind the cracks in the paint. Nonetheless, I am back and I hope to get some shit going. Lot has changed since the last I blogged. Among them include

I have moved out : Although it was great to have free laudary and cleaning services , the drive to and back from work was killing. We (me and Bots) now rent a room close to the office. This allows me to go back at 7:00pm , get a nap, come back to the office at about 10:00pm , code till 2:00 am , head back , get some rest and be in the office again at about 9:30- 10:00 am. Excellent :)

I adjudicated the finals of the
MMUAUstrals 2003 : This ate up almost a week. But it was great. I managed to exorsicise many a debating demons through this and it felt much better. At least I have contributed to some major competition and etched my name in the debating archives. It was alot better then when I was a puppet adjudicator during the Asians 2000. Puppet in the sense that I knew nuts about adjudication and it was my mentor (who was Deputy Chief Adjudicator ) who was running the show. Moreover , this competition we even had an IT round with the following motions:

1.This house believes that Open Source is a clear and present danger to capitalism.
2.This house believes that software companies should be financially liable for bugs in their software.
3.This house believes that employers have the right to check employees email.

I was in a round where they did the 2nd motion. There was an abovious lack of material (these are all primarily arts and law students) but they had the arguments heading the right way. Issues discussed included the fact that there is a vicious release first - test later attitude in the software world due to the fact that features sell. Hence ensuring that there is a financial detriment attached to bugs will slow and hopefully reverse this cycle.

I am developing on a windows 98 machine : I don't wanna go off on a rant but this totally sucks. Why then you ask ? Well because I have 2 products I am working on that HAS to get out the door by end of this month. Since Windows 98 is the lowest common denominator, and most businesses run it still, I have to ensure that the bloody apps work on it best. Working on my RedHat and testing on Bots XP justs didnt cut it. There were some aspects of the apps that would work on XP but not on 98 and that totally sucked. Sucked more then working on Windows 98 :(.

I am a lot fatter : Blame it on the booze, rich breakfast and a bad case of fucking laziness folks. I gotta hit the joggers again. Gotta get the routine again.

Well thats for now. I just needed to get that out of the system.

See you guys soon.

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Its been way too long since I last blogged.

The crap maintenance work is getting to me , getting to most of us. Hardly anytime is spent coding, time is instead spent fire fighting bullshit like Symantec AntiVirus Servers that refuse to start, fixing fucked up Windows ME (the worst Windows version ever), upgrading Windows 2000 workstations, handling problems due to flaky TMNet DNS servers (domains resolve only 3 out of 10 times) , reinstalling Office XP due to Windows ME registry fuck-ups, redeploying Symantec AntiVirus Clients due to Symantec AntiVirus Server reinstalls, troubleshooting BRAND NEW ADSL modems which don't work (this took 12 hours, we didnt know if the problem was the modem, the line , the Windows ME[again!] or the Network card: turned out it was the OS and the Modem), dealing with dumb ass support from TM Net for ADSL and dealing with customers who need to purchase software and hardware.


Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Learning new languages.

Many programming languages, share common aspects. We see languages sharing common ground in terms of is Object Orientation implementation (inheritance ,abstract objects, intefaces,polymorphism) the way it is run, (i.e. interpretatated or compiled), the type of control commands it supports (i.e. for,foreach,if ,break etc), the usage of delimeters (i.e. () {} ; ' ' etc) and many more.

Hence it makes a lot of sense of learning new languages by mapping aspects of languages you already know. This allows you to build up the basics of the new language you are learning faster and then work in the unique features of the language later.

Some people argue that , instead of coding using the plus points of the new language , you end up coding as you would in the language you used as the spring board. For example I have read about situations where C programmers, coding in C++ without really cashing on the plus points of C++.

Although this might very well be true I believe the primary reason why this happened was more due to the fact that between C and C++ there is a major paradigm (I hate that word) change. You are moving from a procedural coding methodology to one that is Object based. (And lets leave the discussion that you can code OO in C for another day) Would this necessarilly be the case if you are moving between Object languages? The effect would be much less. I don't think so.

Naturally effort would be required on the part of the coder dude to learn up the new languages plus points to leverage its benefits.

I have tried doing this for the Python language and I did manage to get a grasp of the language at reasonable speed. I attribute this primarily also to the book I was using while trying to grasp Python, and best of all its available online. Mark Pilgrim's excellent Dive into Python. It adopts an approach of relating aspects of Python to theequivalent or somewhat equivalents aspects of other languages such as Java ,C and C++.

Where it also shines is in showing where what might seem like similar functiality in other languages, is actually not. This definately helps from letting you fall into an icky pool of confusion.

Another great source for learning this excellent language(and many other languages actually) is PLEAC - Programming Language Examples Alike Cookbook. Ill let the site explain what it provides

Following the great Perl Cookbook (by Tom Christiansen & Nathan Torkington, published by O'Reilly) which presents a suite of common programming problems solved in the Perl language, this project aims to gather fans of programming, in order to implement the solutions in other programming languages.

If successful, this project may become a primary resource for quick, handy and free reference to solve most common programming problems using higher-level programming languages, and for comparison on ease-of-use and power/efficiency of these languages.

There you go. Now go and learn a language today :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Its been sometime since I have posted. A good deal of laziness and a block of 'koteh-jobs' have resulted in me not having the time to code , read or blog. Nonetheless, I hope to have more time soon.

There are several things happening:

The application I have been working on is near feature complete for the first beta. Now what I need to do is work out the UI kinks , cross plaform GUI headaches, refactor lots of hurried code and ensure it has an easy to use installer which will allow for a self contained installation. Shit

I have been using Reportlab and I must say, its an excellent piece of software. Ill be writing a short howto on how to generate simple business documents (such as invoices,bill,quotes etc.) using it soon. It won't be too much of interest for the intermediate or advance Reportlab user , but it might help some beginners like myself.

On other fronts , I am also trying to help put with a local comunity effort to promote Malaysian blogs through the development of a publicly managed OPML list of all Malaysian blogs that will allow Feedster to do searches for Malaysian only blogs. The Walrus got his eyes set on making a search engine , ultra kewl. I hope to spend some time on this soon too, if I can find any :).

So, there we go , the shits lined up, lets see where I can go from here.

Saturday, June 14, 2003

I have been looking into a bayesian spam filtering solution. Not knowing much about it I have been doing some basic reserach. Here are some links to those who might find it of interest:

Paul Graham: Better Bayesian Filtering

Paul Graham: A plan for spam

PopF -- POP3 Spam Filter

Orange:is a component-based data mining software. It includes a range of preprocessing, modelling and data exploration techniques.

EZ Bayesy

Reverend:is a general purpose Bayesian classifier

Thursday, June 12, 2003

Need some kewl Malaysian blogs to checkout? Checkout the Project Petaling Street site. Its an aggregation of Malaysian blogs from across many genres. Very kewl indeed.