1. 9

What are you doing this week? Feel free to share!

Keep in mind it’s OK to do nothing at all, too.

  1.  

  2. 4

    Preparing to get my life back together, and move back to NYC.

    1. 4

      $work: Aww yeah bugfixing week. 99 bugs on the wall, fix a bug, push the fix, 127 bugs on the wall.

      !$work: I’m declaring my WSL experiment complete and it’s been a failure (albeit a close one!) :). I’ll probably buy a Mac down the line, in the meantime I’m getting my Debian installation back.

      1. 1

        Out of curiosity, what problems did you have with WSL? It’s been a while since I’ve used it, but I had problems installing the Haskell compiler on it last time. Heard they’ve fixed that though.

        1. 3

          Ah, I didn’t actually have too much trouble with WSL2! I call it “the WSL experiment” because I figured I’d try to run Windows for a few months, using WSL2 to do any Linux-specific bits of work that I need to do. That part actually worked pretty well. The only silly thing I ran into is that mounting encrypted volumes required some fiddling – if some of the drives are locked when WSL starts, unlocking them will not make them accessible immediately. I didn’t look into a better fix than just restarting WSL instances, they boot up quickly enough that I didn’t care for a better one. WSL2 is actually great. If I could have WSL2 and Windows 2000, or even Windows 7, I wouldn’t look back.

          Unfortunately, using other virtualization solutions along with it (Virtualbox, VMWare Player) is… hit and miss, at best, actually it’s mostly miss. Virtualbox’ latest version runs, but kept crashing. VMWare Player straight up wouldn’t do any useful virtualization. I tried to get a non-trivial network setup with Microsoft’s Hyper-V and by the time it sort of worked, my physical network connectivity dropped every two minutes or so, for no discernible reason, and I’m not smart enough to troubleshoot it.

          I could generally put up with various annoyances – like booting up to a full-screen Edge ad and finding Edge pinned to my taskbar, or having to restore various settings after updates. They’re annoying, sure, but not as annoying as fixing whatever broke on my Linux desktop this month (I had “can’t get any MIDI to come out of my speakers”, May was “systemd’s timers suddenly stopped firing” – my bet for August is something GTK-related but I’m not sure what yet…). But I kindda need virtual machines to work, and I need them to do proper networking, too, that’s not really negotiable, and I don’t want to spend a weekend on it.

          tl;dr I already have a system to babysit every time I upgrade, but I’m better-equipped to deal with breakage and can avoid most of the UX circlejerk by just staying away from those projects. It turned out Windows didn’t get me enough on top of that to warrant the effort of a switch.

          1. 1

            Interesting, thanks for the response. It’s weird you mention VM issues. I have seen lots of people have problems with those on Windows. Best of luck on Linux / Unix :)

            1. 1

              It’s weird you mention VM issues. I have seen lots of people have problems with those on Windows

              I’m pretty sure, at this point, that this is some weird interaction, if not with Windows’ Hyper-V subsystem, then with my hardware. I’ve used VMs on various Windows machines for a long time and while it was never as straightforward as on most Unices I’ve used or Linux, it was never that bad.

              Best of luck on Linux / Unix :)

              Thanks! My hiatus lasted about a month and a half. I think of it as a very short and somewhat disappointing holiday after about 20 years of FreeBSD and Linux :).

      2. 3

        Besides the usual stuff, I had a friend on Twitter just now ask if there were any easy html/js chess boards. He wanted to easily be able to represent a position and then talk about moves.

        I thought this would be a cool little 1-4hr side project to use to talk about coding, but frankly, after poking around a bit, I’m not sure there’s enough problem there to need a solution. The basic solution is almost trivial with the latest web tech and while I could certainly make it more complicated (doing things like taking various forms of notation or scripting piece moves), none of that is what he asked for. So right now I’m leaning towards “no” That sucks. I love both chess and talking about how to come up with solutions for people.

        So I guess I’m going to look around for something fun to code and share, maybe go ahead and code it out. Don’t know.

          1. 2

            So, why not make make it, if it’s almost trivial?

            If you don’t, I may try to pick it up as a small web page.

            1. 1

              Unless it’s something that the friend can do, if course.

              I was mostly thinking of making it easy to copy/paste boards to various fora, but I suspect that they already have chess notation markup that does what they need.

              1. 1

                Frankly I don’t know where to stop. Board? Almost trivial. Pieces on board? Same. Now what? There are multiple formats to indicate/persist board state, do I capture all of them? Only one? Local database, remote database, or hardcoded js? How about moves, both previous and future (which would involve different coding)

                The multiple formats gives me pause, as does the idea of writing a chess-scripting engine (en passant? 50-move rule? Can white castle, etc) Here we get to the point where there’s no one right answer, not even an answer that I would consider robust. I’d code it one way, my friend would want another. People would want to save, perhaps persist games.

                Even blowing it all out as far as possible, it doesn’t look like a monster, maybe 1-4 days of part-time coding. It’s got that producty-feel to it, where I make it and then scrounge around looking for folks willing to try/use. Just seems like a headache.

                I’m still thinking about it, though. Maybe I’ll just do an initial board setup and see if my friend likes it. That could show off some new tech without getting too far out in imaginary-requirements land.

                I’ll decide today.

                1. 1

                  Fair enough, knowing where to stop would be a challenge. For me, my main thought was just a website that server-side renders a board based on a board layout in a URL, and adding a few options to copy/paste that (using JS Canvas for copying images, perhaps). Chess boards as a function, without state. Any more than that, and I’d want to find some sort of return for it, which seems unlikely for such a small thing.

                  1. 1

                    You could do a true SPA, something that would run on a thumbdrive. Then the rest of the tech doesn’t matter. Want to deliver json from a server? Cool. Want to deploy with various games and provide a sample pack, no server? Cool. Want to add message queuing or something else and play a million games at a time? Cool. No problem.

                    In fact, that’s probably how I’d start.

            2. 3

              After reading a stackoverflow question “What does $1 mean in Perl?” I decided to dust off my 2nd Edition copy of Learning Perl. It’s been an enjoyable and informative short read. I decided to write a static site generator to get a better grip on some of Perl’s features and I’m pleasantly surprised at my own progress. Even though my edition was first published in July 1997 it hasn’t hindered the process of getting up and running.

              1. 3

                My work has hackday this Friday so I’ll be thinking of something to build for that (can be anything e.g. open source is fine).

                At home, I’m currently learning Figma to create illustrations for my articles. I first used it a week or two ago to redesign the furniture layout for the flat (1cm = 1pixel).

                1. 3

                  Teaching a TLA+ workshop. Lunch break ends in five minutes

                  1. 1

                    Is that an in-person workshop?

                    1. 1

                      It’s online. Social distancing in effect!

                      1. 2

                        Neat. Are you planning to do more of those? I’d be interested.

                  2. 2

                    Getting a new chair.

                    Start working on a little CI system. Already had it in Bash but wanted to add web UI, so I’m rewriting it in Crystal.

                    Probably implement UI for backups in my tool for Minecraft server hosting.

                    1. 2

                      Preparing for starting on a new job on Monday so this is my last week of vacation. I have ordered a new pair of comfy indoor sandals since I forgot to take my old pair with me from my former office :) Will probably have some guests over for bbq later this evening.

                      1. 2

                        Getting back into $work after being off for a bit so that we could move a long distance and get our new housing all setup.

                        1. 2

                          !$work - Continuing a rewrite of the UI for a tactical game I’m working on (https://twitter.com/stratagemstudio). We got feedback that our current UI paradigm is still confusing. Ripping out some smaller features, and reorganizing the ability placement to give players a clearer understanding of what’s going on.

                          1. 1

                            I gotta say, that game looks super interesting from an art standpoint. Do you have a place (other than twitter), where I can sign up to get updates? Perhaps an itch.io page or a place where I could wishlist it on steam?

                            1. 1

                              There’s an Instagram account as well, but it’s usually the same content. You can follow the artist at https://instagram.com/greatseamonster, he’s really great!

                              1. 1

                                It’s nice to see Godot devs working on cool stuff. I’ve used it some on the side, and it seems to hit a nice spot, at least for smaller projects. I’m still learning a lot of the knobs and how to do certain things. (I just figured out how to work with repeating a sprite this weekend).

                          2. 2

                            I’m working on how to improve programming teaching methods. Teaching programming is a fancy activity - doing it online is hard. The global format I’m trying to improve (for community driven affordable courses) are 4 one-hour sessions. Each of them takes on hour and consists of 25 minutes of theory, 25 minutes of practice and a 10 minute break.

                            1. 2

                              I really want to try and submit a pull request to rustlings. I’ve been going through the projects exercises and thought it would be fun to contribute. Not sure what I would make yet, maybe something having to do with memory management. Their GitHub README is requesting more exercises with that focus.

                              1. 2

                                $work: I handed in my resignation last week, so I am finishing up some things and starting to do hand overs. !work: The new job will be on a different stack (TypeScript and DynamoDB), so I am going to port an old JS project to TS as a way to get my feet wet. I’m also continuing reading Practical TLA+ (thanks @hwayne!). I’m finding the big up front info dump kind of hard going, and hoping the more practical second half of the book will help things click for me.

                                1. 2

                                  work: I’m fixing some bugs in our logging pipeline, deploying our metrics pipeline to a bunch of new regions. Additional to this some infrastructure changes.

                                  !work: I have a couple of articles that I want to write so I may start on one of those. I will also continue working on my self hosted analytics platform (currently used in the blog of a friend and colleague and in my own personal blog).

                                  1. 2

                                    Resurrecting a 2013 angular, nodejs, mongo, elasticsearch side project. Skipping forward so many versions has been messy. I’m now starting to move it to elixir, cockroach, elasticsearch, not sure about the client side as I haven’t touched any since that angular.

                                    1. 2

                                      Learn Golang stuff.

                                      1. 1

                                        $work - Usual dance of unblocking others and writing up things before they need it.

                                        !$work - Going to visit a friend now lockdown in the UK has lifted somewhat, not that either of us are particularly expanding our respective social bubbles much. Also need to write up how we’re going to sunset one website and redirect to another site for the Sailing Club.

                                        Maybe model some 3d bits, having pulled my third car (2003 Mini One) out of “storage” I’ve remembered the phone holder in it fell apart and could do with a shim printed to stop the phone spinning round every time you corner.