Category Archives: linux

Lazyweb: SQL Diff

I asked the lazyweb: What’s the preferred SQL diff tool? I’d like to take two SQL dumps and get back an SQL file of the difference. Sheeri Cabral delivers the answer: if you do your DB dump with the –skip-extended-insert option, you can use regular old diff to get you most of the way there. […]

A Short Course On The Tragedy In Act One

Back in 2003 Raymond Chen, noted Microsoftie and venerable author of the excellent Old New Thing blog, wrote a bit about the propensity programmers had for, and problems caused by, reverse-engineering Microsoft’s APIs and hooking into them in unapproved ways: “For example, BOZOSLIVEHERE was originally the window procedure for the edit control, with the rather […]

On Hiring

I’ve decided that if I find out a job applicant has internet-bragged that they could implement some major (Kickstarter, Ebay, Etsy, Facebook, anything…) website’s functionality in a week with Ruby – and it’s always Ruby, lately – I’m going to give them an interview right away, just so I can ask them why they haven’t. […]

Political Theory, Asymmetric Warfare & Batman Movies

I made this presentation to Seneca’s Free Software and Open Source Symposium last year; it is dreadfully embarassing, revealing mainly that I’m a terrible speaker who tells weak jokes, goes off into the weeds too often, rambles and says “um” far and away too much. This is just the voice track over my slides, which […]

Gnome 3

“The difference between something that can go wrong and something that can’t possibly go wrong is that when something that can’t possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.” – Douglas Adams I decided a while ago that virtualizing my whole devenv was getting kind of […]

Assorted Nerdery

First off, my colleague Donna wrote up a bit about the work we’ve been doing for the last few months. It’s been a pleasure to work with her, and I don’t really think of her as a crony but nobody tell her I said so. The second thing is a way to get all the […]

Women And Open Source

Noted sex and technology blogger Violet Blue has written a bit here calling 2010 “The Year of Whining About Women In Tech”. In my erstwhile role as an obscenely overprivileged white man and freestanding meritocracy I’ve been giving this some thought recently. I feel that you should pay attention to my opinions on the subject. […]


From Douglas Adams “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe”: It is a curious fact, and one to which no one knows quite how much importance to attach, that something like 85% of all known worlds in the Galaxy, be they primitive or highly advanced, have invented a drink called jynnan tonnyx, or gee-N’N-T’N-ix, […]

All While Humming “Circle Of Life”

So, just for the googles: if you’re considering upgrading from Ubuntu 9.04 to Ubuntu 9.10 or 10.4 and you have a Broadcom Wireless adapter of the 43xx vintage (mine is a 4312) I believe this advice applies to most of them. You should, before doing anything else, open a terminal, change your sources list located […]

A Note To Maya

So according to the old joke, a fed-up student asks the physics prof who’s going over kinetics in protracted detail, what good is all this? What will I ever use this for? To which the professor, not even looking up from where he’s writing on the board, says “This stuff saves lives.” The student balks […]