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This is the weekly thread to discuss what you have done recently and are working on this week.

Please be descriptive and don’t hesitate to champion your accomplishments or ask for help, advice or other guidance.

(Yes, today is not Monday but it seems most of the western world went back to work today so why not start our weekly thread here! First one of 2018 too!)


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    The part of my job that I’m least good at, though take non-least interest in, is people management, and I need to do that betterer. I manage a couple of devs so I’m going to pair with each of them this week to get more insight into how they work and how I can help.

    Out of work: I made a big map of my interests last year and will be chipping at something on there. Probably AROS, I made a small start at the weekend and enjoyed it.

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      • A major Vue-based refactor at work, which has been a lot of fun. At the same time I’m a bit paranoid that I’ve been taking too long. If anyone can speak to dealing with that paranoia in healthy ways, it’d help me feel better!
      • Working exercise back into my life after a puzzling injury - it seemed like De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis but it took three times as long for symptoms to ease up
      • Wedding planning
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        Some tips regarding feeling slow:

        • discuss solutions with coworkers
        • demo results for stakeholder often
        • break down work items before/during coding to get the feeling of checking items off the list
        • if it suits your work place: get your work into the main branch early & often, I really think it helps to balance the perfect (but slow) solution vs making tangible progress; it feels nice, and if the issue really drags out so that it needs to be aborted, there was a little bit of progress delivered

        I think it is mostly a communications issue. Usually the daily standups catches things that take too long, which should make team members want to help you in someway. Most of the time when I feel like that, it is remedied by talking to someone, or even rubber ducking.

        I am sure there are other tips if you google it a bit, good luck!

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          Thank you!

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        Outside of work: I’ve been moving into a new apartment and decorating it with help from family. I recently picked up a bunch of books for the Humble “Be a Coder” bundle that I’d like to work through and blog about, including some ones I’ve wanted to get for a long time, especially Land of Lisp., I’ll be writing some retrospective articles on things I’ve done in 2017 in my various side projects, (the first one talking about improving PISC performance is up, but I’d like to write one or two more).

        At work: This is about week 6 of my new job. I’m still learning a lot, and getting familiar with things, but things have been going well.

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          Looks like the link is incorrect: This is the article I meant to link.

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          I’m trying to properly set up my current emacs nearly 3 year old hacked-together configuration. I’ve got mail working, and still have to figure out how to make some editing operations more intuitive (like wrapping n statements in c-mode with a if/while). I tried helm, but it just doesn’t seem like it’s worth the effort, especially when it pops up it places I’d rather it not, like magit.

          Other than that, I’ve been contemplating about switching to Debian stable from Void on my Thinkpad X41, and I’ve been playing around with pandoc 2.X. The new groff output mode is great, I really appreciate that they’re added it.

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            What’s your current solution for mail? I really want to use Emacs for that but I personally do not want to give up the IMAP idle mechanism from thunderbird, hence I am still using that while the volume of incoming mail is somewhat low.

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              Currently a rather standard mbsync+mu+mu4e setup. But I do currently have to (and want to) manually updates my inbox, so I’m not sure if my setup would be what you are looking for.

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                Ah I see. Yes, unfortunately it looks like that.

                Still, I am always glad to see others talking about emacs. It prompted me to finally submit two tiny changes to two projects that have annoyed me for quite some time now.

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            Finish a system which makes RSS feeds from release versions, with Wikipedia as source. This gives me a single place to keep track of things I need to keep track of for work, without getting too much noise. Works pretty well for things as git, Kibana, or Ruby. Not so much for very small projects which don’t have a Wikipedia page :) Mostly done, needs a few things still: https://verssion.one and/or my github. After that the next side project to keep me distracted from real work…

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              I plan to do something like this (track software updates), but I would directly scrap software websites or CVS web interfaces (e.g. fetch git tags on cgit) instead of relying on Wikipedia, to get instant updates. I wonder how package maintainers (or Wikipedia contributors) are dealing with this because few pieces of software have an RSS feed for updates.

              By the way, to have a user-friendly way to privately scrap websites (elements of pages, text files, etc…) automatically for all kind of updates would be awesome. I know someone that uses a piece of proprietary software that is not so nice for that matter.

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                I’ve been mentally designing a ‘good’ way to do this for some time.

                It’s very hard if you care about edge cases, but not so bad if you don’t. I’ll do a show-post here if I ever get it going nicely.

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                  Going to the sites directly makes it really hard to filter out betas and other unstable releases. Even the github “releases” page don’t help much here; it also happy lists the -pre1 releases. Regexp-ing version numbers is also less easy than it looks ( looks like a perfectly fine number), so you would need to twiddle for each and every software project, definiing a source, what a version looks like, and how unstable versions work, and keep them up to date. On top of that there is Vim, which releases a new stable(!) version every 4 hours or so. :)

                  I had a look at all that, and at what is available on wikipedia. I choose to use wikipedia, since it’s Good Enough IMHO. And as a bonus it helps keep wikipedia up to date!

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                  You might have luck with scraping gem repositories for version numbers. Could be a bit more straightforward too.

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                  I still have this week off, since lectures do not start until next week. Still, there are still some assignments left, that I will need to work on in the remainder of the week.

                  I /just/ finished writing a recap of my year. I thought that if I don’t do it this week (today) I would not get around to it. The super quick summary is that I got my Bachelor’s last September and moved twice in the last year.

                  I really want to work on a project in Rust and even have an idea for it. I would really like something like isync but that is also able to handle IMAP idle. I guess offlineimap could be used but I most times it is discussed someone is complaining about the code quality of it…

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                    Writing a blog post that attempts to answer the question “how much can you trust benchmark results from cloud-CI pipelines like Travis?” (eg. as suggested by this post by BeachApe).

                    Intuitively, you might think “not much”. Well, it turns out the answer is… “not much” - but I have numbers to prove it. Benchmark results from Travis-CI are substantially noisier than equivalent benchmarks taken from a regular desktop PC. Disappointingly obvious, but it’s nice to put some data behind the intuitive answer anyway.

                    It does get me thinking about whether a sufficiently-smart benchmark harness (potentially some future version of Criterion.rs, the Rust benchmarking library that I maintain) could mitigate the effects of this noise and give reliable-ish numbers even in a cloud-CI environment though.

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                      I intend to work on my personal finances application, which will basically be a software version of the system I have setup right now with a whiteboard. The only idea of this software is to be able to keep track of where your money is at right now, no advanced features like budgeting or so, because I don’t need to do that extensively.

                      I may, but I’m not sure, work on an extension for Chrom(e|ium) to be able to have calendar-like features in Workflowy. It’s an idea I had while I read Getting Things Done. When I’m done with that book if I think it’s a good idea I’ll do it.

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                        Finally decided having a push-based masterless puppet setup was a bit silly, and am now switching it around to be a pull-based one. Yet more shell scripts to maintain, but at least it’s less effort to push changes out across my nodes now. (Also had the bright idea to use bash to install puppet, then use puppet to setup the masterless puppet stuffs properly. Two stage bootstrap ftw.)

                        Making plans for the next few weeks as well. Lots of DIY in the house to complete, and I’ve made decisions on a couple of things so I can stop stalling and just crack on with it. Also decided that ProjectBMW is going to be sold this year, and I want an MX-5 again. Maybe even an NC, although I still think they’re the worse looking of all generations.

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                          for a food: migrating proxmox lxc to openstack, troubleshooting micromonolith, writing ansible and docker compose as usual for fun: assembling armhf kernels for c.h.i.p/dreamcatcher and bumping some versions here and there

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                            Changed email providers yesterday, from fastmail to posteo. I had to set up a bit of email redirection to be able to support my custom domain name, but I’m happy with my setup. I still need to finish setting up smtp for mutt (I’m using offlineimap for imap). I also want to finish setting up Quake 2 on OpenBSD, so I can join gaming sessions with the nice people on bsd.network.

                            Non-Tech related it’s the last day of the christmas camp tomorrow in my mogul skiing club, so I’m going to be doing video that I will upload to a self hosted nextcloud app that I’m using to share my student’s videos with them. On friday and saturday I will be doing an Advanced Teaching Module as preparation for my level 3 ski instructor exam in february.