Moved from pebble to serendipity / apache to lighttpd / courier to postfix + cyrus

I moved from pebble to serendipity (or s9y as they call it). Mainly, because pebble was the only JAVA process here and that sucked up quite a lot of resources on a host with 32 virtual machines. I imported the old posts and added redirects for all the old urls. Although s9y is written in php, which I dislike as a language, I am quite impressed with its features. For now I enabled comments as it comes with some nice anti spam measures … well see how things work out.

Apache was dumped in favour of lighttpd as I do not need all the functions of apache and it uses a smaller memory footprint … and maybe because lighttpd is hip and I wanted to try it out ūüėČ

As we are going to use postfix/cyrus in the university I read a few IMAP performance comparisons and a lot of docu. Both outperform courier: cyrus performance and postfix documentation made the decision easier…

I hope nothing got broken ūüėČ

so long

Using Cosmo / Bedework CalDAV with Evolution

This evening I was toying around with Cosmo, Bedework and Evolution v2.9.6 on Ubuntu Feisty Fawn. In a perfect world that only would have taken a few minutes…

Unfortunately, Evolution did not really like  the URL I tried to feed it for Cosmo:
caldav://localhost:8080/cosmo/home/testuser/Cosmo – for the current release
Using a browser (and the HTTP protocol) I was able to retrieve the calendar as mime text/text, but Evolution failed to recognize anything. It would even refuse to let me create events when the Cosmo calendar was selected, thinking it was read only …

With Bedework I tried the following with partial success:
http://localhost:8080/ucaldav/user/caluser1/calendar – for the current quickstart release
Evolution fails to import any data from the server. However, events added in Evolution are correctly displayed on the users webcalendar. When pointing a browser to the URL I get this HTML code:

Very strange … the table statement seems to be missing a closing bracket? Could that be the error? I will have to take a closer look at this …

so long

butonic

Feuerzangenbowle

Yeah! I had a small „Feuerzangenbowle“ evening where we watched the movie and also had fun with rum, sugar and flames – it is always interesting to see people reduced to pyromaniacs. Anyway, we had just inflamed the sugar loaf when Maria asked: „So, will I get a hangover tomorrow? I got eleven hours of courses.“ – „I don’t know. I usually don’t have any“ I answered. Then, in the first scene of the movie where the gentleman are enjoying their Feuerzangenbowle one of them grins enthusiastically: „… and it makes a formidable hangover!“.

The next thing I heard were four moaning students.

I did not get up till 11 o’clock the next morning … a nice evening indeed.

4th International Fujaba Days 2006

Arrival began Wednesday with Christian missing. We assumed he’d rather stay with his pregnant wife as the baby was expected every hour. After the social event on Thursday I met a good friend of mine and dumped a load of people on him as we all wanted to party somewhere. Sorry bro ūüėČ „4th International Fujaba Days 2006“ weiterlesen

What led me to Objectivism …

After reading Terry Goodkinds Sword of Truth fantasy series I somewhere snatched up that he was influenced by Ayn Rand. Reading up on her and Objectivism made me recognize the behaviour pattern of its protagonist Richard (spoiler warning). On the one hand, that made him a little less genuine. On the other hand, I got interested in the philosophy and came to like it. Some quotes I found rather interesting … „What led me to Objectivism …“ weiterlesen

In Kassel People don’t know about entering / leaving the train …

I assume that I am have a few prejudices concerning people living in Kassel. When you want to leave the subway they will simply stand in the door opening staring at you. What about stepping aside so people can actually leave the train? No way! You sometimes have to shove them away!
I come from Hannover. People there seem to be much brighter: They usually step aside when the subway stops…Anyway, yesterday I arrived at Kassel in an ICE (Intercity Express – fastest train here in Germany). Guess what? In the trian about ten to fifteen people had queued to leave the train. Ten seconds after the doors had opened some teenager already entered the train with a huge sportsbag on his shoulder. Five to seven people outside wanted to enter … I wanted out but was like … third in line. The ICEs usually have two doors adjacent to each other where the wagons are connected. I could now see that one of the doors was blocked by a guy who had sat down in front of it, assuming he would not find a real seat. The teenager must have climbed over him. Basically everyone was trying to get to the other door. Now the blocker realized, that he might stand to speed up the whole process.
Outside, the first woman already had her foot on the stairs and tried to enter. „Yep, I arrived at Kassel“ I thought. Loosing my calmness I stepped infront of her and began descending the stairs, leaving the train. She backed off, but I could not resist telling everyone outside „Its so easy: let people leave the train first!“ Luckyly, they could not hear what I thought afterwards … but that’s for personal discussion only ūüėČ

You don’t want to switch desktops. You want to switch tasks, don’t you?

When do you switch the (virtual) desktop? When you are interrupted and have to do something else: you switch to another free desktop to start working on a new task. So, why not support the concept of tasks? Sure, you could create a desktops for each task you are working on (as someone on this page already desribed, the panel switcher could grow quite large…), but it won’t prevent your mailprogram to open an html link in an already running browser window on another desktop. Thats not what you want. You don’t even want to see all of your emails in the context for the task you are working on. And you don’t want to see all the people online in Gaim. And you don’t want to see all your notes and todos. Maybe, you even want to shade out appointments in your calendar that are not related to the task at hand. You can very well organize on one desktop when working on a single task … running an application and switching to the documentation with good old alt-tab or even let the windowmanager automatically split/tile multiselected windows (just the way you multiselect files witch ctrl + left click – then rightclick on the titlebar to open a popupmenu). Now, boom, your buddy pops in with his great idea and he needs some input so you start googling, reading and searching, starting an editor and hack at it. If you were lucky you switched to another desktop. Basically, you started a new task. Imagine the task remembering the searches you did (beagle), locallly storing any pages you read the emails you sent and the people you talked to on IM. Maybe even the documents you opened. Imagine sending the whole task to your buddy after you managed to convince him he should carry on alone on his OWN computer because you’d like to get on with your own ramblings …

RDF might cone in handy: create relations between two objects. Or maybe even easier: tagging two objects creates a new relation with that tag as relation between them. Or a context menu / shortcut with an „Add to task …“ command. Whatever is selected + added will be remembered by the task.

Switching between tasks and context would be a simple desktop switch. Gnome has a lot of features that already support this. the tasks could, early on, simply remember the complete desktop layout with panel location, started applets, application window positions etc. The first thing could be a panel applet that re-/stores, backups and sends the configuration of the currently active (current desktop, currently selected) task (via gconf?). Of course, it would have to be possible to have different panel / applet layouts on different desktops … not sure if that is currently possible.

I’m just trying to give some inspiration here. People want to get things done, and they use a lot of different tools for it. At least mail, instant-messaging, a calendar and some main application. Imagine moving tasks to someone else: simply by sending him a „taskfile“ he will see the important contacts in gaim, have the contacts added to evolotion / a more general contacts database, have the relevant applications starters in the top panel, with the needed documents transferred and updated as recently used in the task.

The atoms that Gnome should be able to relate to each other would be contacts, emails, desktop configuration settings and documents / files (well if everything was its own file we would only need that …). That way applications could try to fetch some kind of „context/task environment“ and act accordingly, by hiding unuseful information and storing actions in a local repository. Another approach might be to make everything taggable and then let the user define filters based on these tags, though I think having to tag each applet would be overkill … anyway, its late and I needed to get this of my head.

Yet another idea for a nfsroot pool …

Ok, seems I finally understood the magic around linux initrd.gz files. Basically, it provides a minimal rootfs with an optional /linuxrc executable. Using something like busybox (e.g. via ln -s /bin/busybox /bin/ash) that can even be a shell script.
It should be possible to mount the nfsroot ro, create a tmpfs for unionfs changes and mount /etc, /var and /tmp as rw unionfs… so much for the theory.
In practice the nortmal root device will be mounted to / as soon as /linuxrc terminates. So we should set up the root filesystem as we like and then call /sbin/init (or whatever the initial script) and dont have to bother with changing our root filesystem with something like pivot_root.

Let’s see if I can’t actually come up with a solution that works like this. Nevertheless, I wonder why I did not manage to google one. Are we the only ones managing a pool of linux workstations? o_O

Some links: