Monday, 31 December 2007

FYI: Happy 2008...

As a little gift to all of you for this lovely new year. I would like to point to you to ack. This little nifty piece of Perl code, will make your development searching way more easy then using crippled grep for the same purpose.

Just give it a try and you feel so much better :-)

Thursday, 27 December 2007

Getting FreeBSD libaries in one line

Libraries are common practice these days, but maintaining them is sometimes a bit problematic. FreeBSD has some beautiful tools to fix this. One of them is portupgrade.

So let's review it:

[rick@traffie] /lib $ sudo portsclean -LL
** You have multiple versions of libgpg-error but 1 of them are not from packages:
gpg-error.3 (/usr/local/lib/ <- ?
gpg-error.0 (/usr/local/lib/ <- libgpg-error-1.5
and the symlink (/usr/local/lib/ points to:
gpg-error.0 (/usr/local/lib/ <- libgpg-error-1.5
--> Skipping gpg-error.3 because it is newer than what the packages provide

Ok we have a problem, let's see who did install the files in the first place

[rick@traffie] /lib $ sudo pkg_info -W /usr/local/lib/
/usr/local/lib/ was installed by package libgpg-error-1.5
[rick@traffie] /lib $ sudo pkg_info -W /usr/local/lib/

Thats odd one of the files was linked by any package anymore, as we are all humans there might be a bugs somewhere.
Lets check wether the files really differ:

[rick@traffie] /lib $ md5 /usr/local/lib/{0,3}
MD5 (/usr/local/lib/ = 3fecd10d408cacc034d767d19465784b
MD5 (/usr/local/lib/ = 8259f0206df08b699bae266a12b99d20

They are, might be a forgotten removed file then?

[rick@traffie] ~ $ find /usr/ports/ -name pkg-plist -exec grep -Hn {} \+

Nah, no luck only the installed package libgpg-error. So the final but dangerous -meaning not, no really not! to be tried on a mission critical system- let's remove/rename it :-)
sudo mv  /usr/local/lib/ /root/

Watch your logs for over a week to spot any weird errors.

If you have many multiple dependencies problems and one of then which references to /usr/X11R6 and you 'recently' updated Xorg please alter /etc/rc.conf and include

ldconfig_paths="/usr/lib/compat /usr/local/lib \
ldconfig_paths_aout="/usr/lib/compat/aout /usr/local/lib/aout"

and rerun /etc/rc.d/ldconfig and /etc/rc.d/ldconfig_compat

Sunday, 23 December 2007

imagemagick postscript file generation...

When doing batch processing/manipulation of images imagemagick is one of the most powerful tools around. And the best of it, it open source -GNU to be exactly, so I will not call it free ;-)-

But as with most powerful tools you will need to understand the manual to start working with it properly and hereby comes the problem; I was looking for a way to convert scanned images from a book back together to a postscript document. Running

convert -page letter p*.jpg
did result into a ps document with a lot of very small pictures. Fixing it was not very easy, cause I had to find one implicit fact; Postscript files by default have a DPI of 72, imagemagick convert every picture which needs to be included to 72 DPI and thereby scales the picture down to a smaller format.

To avoid this make sure to explicitly 'downgrade' your picture using the density setting.

convert -page letter -density 72 p*.jpg

Thursday, 20 December 2007

Winter is coming to town...

This is just beautiful , is it? To be a good IT-Dutchy you need to love to things; The beautiful winters where ice skating is possible and having one of the best broadband penetrations in the world of course ;-).

I made my first steps on the frozen ditch today -it have been freezing cold for over a week now- and I just cannot wait to go ice skating, except for the fact that I have to do a exam Concept of Programming languages today :-(

Just which me luck, although I hope I do not need it ;-)

Monday, 10 December 2007

Bloody linux...

As some of you now I run an Ubunu box which I try to keep up2date. apicron reports me the problems/updates on a nearly daily basis, which kind of surprises me. Most of the times I have to update libaries due some security flaws or something else? 

It just does not seems logical to me as running the same set of software on a FreeBSD machine will not report not that many problems at all. Which OS to trust?

Thursday, 6 December 2007 Mac OS X version started porting it's beautiful product to Mac OS X. Some of you might wonder and start pointing to NeoOffice which is doing this job for quite a few years and pretty well. But I just like to check out OOo their latest alfa/beta and it is actually preforming pretty well.

But there are some fundamental differences between the versions, which explained at wiki. One of the main is licensing, as NeoOffice is licensed GPL which does not allow this code to be imported the main OOo project which is licensed as LGPL.

The small conclusion; Having NeoOffice has been a great big advantage, cause OOo under X11 was so damm slow that it was not workable. But the new development OOo native is starting to get way more attractive in terms of speeds and usability. It will properly take a few years before NeoOffice is gone, but it will for sure not last forever.

PS: I do would like to do a big thanks the NeoOffice guys -core development is done by 2 persons only!-, cause you are saving my ass for a few years now. Your product did really help me survive in the bloody 'Word/Excel/Pointerpoint World'

Tuesday, 4 December 2007

pushing a new 'standard'...

Which the new version of Microsoft Office 2007 they also pushed the default fileformat to be their bright and shiny docx files, which kind of surprises me. The new version has no big pro's against the old version doc and if you compare it to the open document standard odp it does not seems to have any advantage.

Their attempt to make their fileformat an open standard in order to make sure that their products could be used in organizations which require such standards -like governments- is a pretty smart move if you look at it in an business prospective. If you are looking for open communication and collaboration it is not a very smart move. Just implement the open document standard and the whole world will be better.

It is quite odd that Microsoft is trying to keep itself on the market by making people depending on them and make it pretty expensive to migrate away from the products, which again sounds logical business wise but will on the long run most do a lot of harm, cause Google, Novell, Apple and others are looking for their part of the pie.

Just think to yourself and the way you are sucked in using Microsoft Office products and thinking the Microsoft way. It is just a vicious cycle, you grow up using Microsoft Products, Office/Windows are the default installations at school -they received their system with a huge scholar discount-. At home your PC is shipped with Microsoft Vista/Windows by default. Hardware manufacturers only build their software for Microsoft Operating systems.

Due the fact you are working with Microsoft products so long, you preform best at work using Microsoft products as well, which gives the company no choice then to move to a Microsoft based environment.

I just wonder, when, who and how will this cycle be broken?

Sunday, 2 December 2007

Typing skills...

Self learned typing ain't that good as you think it is. I tried the very cool -and free of course- flash based typing course made possible by Thinkquest. The UI is dutch, but is very intuitive.

I discovered I was only using a few fingers instead of all -which I thought I did-, the course showed me how to type way more effectively.

Go check it out and when do play the game and try to beat the best -not me ;-)-

NOTE: It is something a bit low on loading, just be patient.