Much ado about scripting, Linux & Eclipse: card subject to change


Ganymede Poster Contest, Part 5: To the Victors go the Spoils

Originally, I'd said the prizes would be $50, $30, and $20, but everyone who won wanted to donate back to Eclipse so the actual per-person amounts became rather moot, and this way you can all enjoy being a Friend of Eclipse. I hope everyone's okay with this little bit of data fudging. :)

Benjamin turned me on to Kiva, which isn't technically a *donation* site as much as a site for loaning entrepreneurs money via micropayments. But it's a great idea, so I've sent $25 to Villa Antofagasta Group as well. After all, I hadn't expected Ian and Lynn to offer me Eclipsewear for running this contest, so I'm already ahead. Thanks, guys! :)

Kiva - loans that change lives

So, if you're a fan of Eclipse and want to do something cool to promote it, contact me, Ian or Lynn -- we're happy to hear your ideas. You don't have to be a committer, bug triager, or employee of any of Eclipse's partners. All you need is passion and an idea.


Day Of The 'Mede

Merci to Denis Roy for proofing my Franglais, und Vielen Dank to Benny and Dominik in #eclipse-de for enduring my silly request to write the German verse below. Ganymede is a multi-cultural / multi-lingual release! Feel free to add your own verse or chorus in the comments! Bonus points if your translation into English rhymes! (See links below for the English text and video; you can also find this en español, if you prefer.)

I was just a tourist my first time at Eclipse-dot-oh
I was a newbie, in danger in a world unknown
But one quick download and the world around me did explode
And projects by the dozens come out from that hole

Why? No lie!
It's the Day of Ganymede! There are there torrents you can seed!
oh-oh-ohh, I didn't even know
It is the Day of the 'Mede! Let's make the servers bleed!
oh-oh-ohh, up there in Otta-whoah!

The place was jumpin' with TCP/IP to and fro
But thanks to p2 I can multi-thread my downlo'
I opened the pinata and a swarm of plugins did install
Dependencies resolved and I knew that I was good to go

Why? No lie!
It's the Day of Ganymede! Can you get some? Indeed!
oh-oh-ohh, I didn't even know
It is the Day of the 'Mede! All our sources have been freed
oh-oh-ohh, in Portland, Orego'!

The councils tell me not to fear
It happens like this once a year
When the build's done, committers leave their cubes and
Apparently they come out here
For the beer!

Why? No lie!
It's the Day of Ganymede! And now it's time to feed
oh-oh-ohh, join the release party
It is the Day of the 'Mede: so lift a jug of mead
oh-oh-ohh, wherever you might be

Es ist der Tag von Ganymede! - um was es geht?
oh-oh-ohh, Der Zug fährt ab, die Community ist froh
Es ist der Tag von Ganymede! - mit Projekten fast fürs ganze Alphabet
ja-ja-jaa, von BIRT bis Webtools, alle sind sie da!

C'est le jour de fête Gany, comprends-tu ce que je dis?
oh-oh-ohh, ou est-ce que c'est pelle melle?
C'est le jour de Ganymède! Toujours besoin de l'aide*
oh-oh-ohh, traduire projet Babel!

* - Yeah, that translation rollover's a bit of a stretch, I know.

Voltaire - Day of the Dead / Dia de los Muertos


Ganymede Poster Contest, Part 4: The Winners

Drum roll please...

The results are in, and here are your winners!

So, the next step is for Benjamin Cabe, Michael Tkacz, and Nick Hofstede to contact me and decide how they'd like to distribute their prize money. While Benjamin's top poster only placed third, the fact that he had 4 posters in the top ten makes me think he deserves the top prize.

So, guys, tell me who should get the funds, and why, and I'll PayPal you the money so you can donate it and keep the tax receipt (if applicable). If you don't have a PayPal account, I can donate on your behalf. If you want your donation to go back to Eclipse in exchange for a Friends of Eclipse membership, that's allowed too. :)

Congrats to everyone who participated!


Ganymede Poster Contest, Part 3: Time To Vote!

After several weeks and dozens of great submissions, it's time to pick a winner.

Please take a few moments to choose your favourite (up to 3) posters.

Winning posters will receive Eclipse schwag, graciously donated by the Foundation, and some coin to give to your favourite open source organization or free service provider.

Voting is open until June 24, 2008, 5:00 pm EDT.


Toward Standardized Groups

June 5 marked the death knell for my conquest for world domination through Eclipse committer groups.

Before then, I was in a whopping 62 different linux groups on, coming in third behind Kim and Sonia (80 and 79, respectively).

However, with Karl and Matt actively cleaning up these duplicate and often empty groups & standardizing the names, my numbers have dwindled to a mere 55. Sadly, I'll lose 4 more when we standardize GEF...

Still, consistency is better than world domination, right?

If your project needs some housecleaning, Karl's looking for volunteers to work with him on this effort. If you are interested, I'd recommend starting with a shared spreadsheet (eg., [1], [2]) to document your before and after states.


Mirror Site Appreciation Day

When I saw Denis' post, I just couldn't resist making this...


Tears of a Clone

Hey, everyone, this is Nick's clone. I'm afraid I'm going to have to take over, as Nick's had a rather unfortunate "accident." Just after midnight, he turned and started trying to eat our fiancé, so I had to step in and end him.

He will be missed. Unfortunately, it may take a few months to grow a replacement, but at least all the insanity of the past couple days is over. On the plus side, this means that *I* get to go on the cruise in August instead!


I think this will be my last post tonight. I'm really not feeling well...


Beginning The End

Just got back from the short film fest. Kept having strange thoughts as I watched Martians Go Home! and saw all the reanimated corpses. It felt like I was home.

Just outside the theatre on our way back to the car, we encountered our first -- dare I saw it? -- zombie, and had to put him down. As you can see from this photo, I wasn't as overjoyed as the rest of my party, as I knew what must lay in store for me.

Quiet on the Lake

Decided to get away from the noises in the neighbourhood and the buzzing in my head by heading down the lake for a quick paddle. Ah, tranquility at last, despite the rather angry waves.

Unfortunately, after about a half hour, I saw a couple rockets fly over and when I looked up toward the Bluffs, I saw what looked like something on fire. Cripes!

After a frantic bit of googling on my phone, it looks like there've been reports of a zombie uprising. Speculation is that between all the lightning and rain over the last week, graves have been washed out and their inhabitants reanimated somehow. I know that sounds insane, but that's what they're reporting. There's also been talk of pollution leading to illnesses in birds, which might be related to all the feathers and offal I found yesterday.

I wonder if that means that I'm... infected?

Silence No More

Well, so much for an eerily quiet day. The silence has been replaced by barking dogs, sirens, and sounds of backyard destruction.

Meanwhile, my internet connection is still down, but the Bell connection at my inlaws' place is up. Took a dip in their pool, and when I came out I realized my skin was blistering.

(Un)fortunately, I have plans to head downtown tonight to meet some friends for dinner and catch the late show at the World Wide Short Film Festival... but after that I think it's time for a trip to the hospital to figure out what is wrong with me.

Network outage

Well, great -- my internet's down. Bloody typical. Gawd, I'm in a terrible mood now.

Called Rogers to yell at them -- which is odd, since I'm usually pleasant when dealing with support staff since I know how annoying tech support can be -- and they told me this was an "unplanned outage," then tried to get off the phone quickly.

I kept him talking, as I heard what sounded like shouting and the sounds of glass smashing in the background. Eventually he relented that the switching station nearest my neighbourhood had been overrun by a gang of teenagers, apparently as part of some end of the school year prank. He said the last update he's gotten, the cops were working to clear the scene, but the kids were unusually aggressive and out of control, so it might take a while. I thanked him but the line had already gone dead. So rude.

Anyway, typing on my cellphone is becoming increasingly difficult as my hand continues to itch and it's making texting difficult. Plus, I'm having trouble focusing.

Will update later, if the network comes back.

Rare meat

Lunch. Decided I was in the mood for a burger. Unfortunately, about a minute after I dropped the frozen patty on the grill, I ran out of propane. Strangely, though, I didn't care -- I just pulled it off and ate it, raw, pink, and slightly bloody. I've always like my steak rare, but this is a little off, even for me. Still, it was the best burger I've had in ages.

After lunch I decided I should go get some more propane for the barbecue, so I headed over to the U-Haul store nearby. I must be looking haggard today, as the tank guy looked at me funny at first, and asked what I was planning to eat. Confused, I said something about steaks on the weekend.

Because the tank was filling really slowly, I decided to head into the U-Haul office to pay. As I started walking away, he urgently called me back and said the tank was done. He asked, hesitantly, if I was paying with Debit. I said I could, if he wanted, again unsure what he was getting at. He suggested cash, and when I said sure he seemed visibly relieved, as if the idea of me in the office was abhorrent. Or maybe the Interac network's down today. Who knows. I paid, and he took off at a not-too-subtle pace into the office, looking back once to make sure I was leaving in the opposite direction. Must be the heat, or maybe I'm just slow today.

The streets are empty

Seems Patch is feeling better today, but Bud's a little off. He keeps growling at me for no apparent reason. So, to hopefully calm him down, we went for my usual daily walk.

There's nothing usual about today. The streets are empty, save for abandoned buses. Even multi-lane roads sit empty.

When we got back, I noticed that something had been clawing at my recycle bin.

What the hell's going on today?

Still probably nothing

Last night I couldn't sleep, so designed a bunch of new Ganymede Posters. Looking at them today, it seems I've been thinking a lot about the undead and the end of the world of late. In fact, when I woke up this morning, I had The Future Soon stuck in my head. Brushing my teeth, this switched somehow to End Of The World As We Know It (I Feel Fine), and I had this uncanny craving for peanut butter. Wierd.

Anyway, that cut on my hand is getting strangely puffy. I'll post more as this progresses.

Ganymede Poster Contest, Part 2

So far, the Ganymede Poster Contest has been a raging success, with hordes of submissions swarming over bug 227561. We'll be announcing how you can vote soon, which means there's not a lot of time left to get in your submissions!

Here's a few more, if you're struggling for fresh brains, erm, ideas...

(Click images to enlarge. Get your submissions in now, before it's all over!)


Probably nothing

This afternoon I went down to the beach to walk my dogs, and while there discovered that there were many feathers and offal scattered (pun intended) all over. I've seen bird-littered beaches before, but this seems... different somehow.

As usual my dogs are fascinated with the taste of goose crap -- it was a struggle to keep them from eating everyone on the beach. Later, when I was giving them treats for waiting for a traffic light, Patch snapped at my hand and inadvertently broke the skin. It still itches.

A few hours later, he threw up all over my living room, and has been passed out ever since. I think he must be dreaming, as he's twitching gently and making strange noises.

I'm sure it's nothing.


RC3's All Green

RC3's all green. Red noses? no
EPP blooms for me and you
And I think to myself, what a Ganymede world

I see lines of code compiled for me
With bright JDT, and dark PDE
And I think to myself, what a Ganymede world

The projects of Ganymede, so pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces of people going by
I see friends shakin' hands, sayin' "I <3 p2"
They're also saying "Eclipse is you"

I hear bugs a'squashin', I watch them go
The teams do much more than I'll ever know
So I think to myself, what a Ganymede world
Yes, I think to myself, it's a Ganymede world

Oh yeah

Louis Armstrong (Weiss & Thiele) - What a Wonderful World


HOWTO: Contribute

There's been a fair amount of discussion about volunteers and community outreach of late, both on the Planet and in the newsgroups. The following is probably nothing new, but here's my take.

In eclipse.platform.swt, Ed said:

Human nature is such that if everything is working smoothly, for example, if every desired SWT feature simply appears out of thin air, then there is no compelling need to change behavior. Only when things get painful or uncomfortable is action taken. If the belief is that others are responsible for providing the level of comfort to which we've grown accustomed, that action will typically take the form of complaints rather than constructive steps to deal with the issue directly.

I couldn't agree more. That's been my experience w/ PDT -- blog about successes/failures, open bugs, see minor improvement. This was Phase One: Complaining. Not very effective.

Then I started lurking in #eclipse and found that there were a lot of people eager to use PDT, but who were having issues getting it up and running, or migrating to it from another PHP editor. So, after finding myself answering the same questions over and over, I started contributing to the Eclipse wiki, writing docs on installation & migration. Phase Two: Support / Documentation.

Last week, I found myself volunteering for PDT's first Bug Day (which frankly didn't go as well as I'd have liked). To digress for a moment, here's why:

Of the bugs tagged for BugDay, Roy suggested I look at the ones about code formatting, as they were long-standing issues.

I know next to nothing about structured text editors and how the data model is used to properly indent code, so this was a bit of a struggle -- first to find where to insert breakpoints, then to really understand what was going on. Roy was very supportive and helpful, but ultimately I don't think I had enough experience to really be useful.

The other reason for my failure to launch was that much of BugDay got eaten up with my other commitments, and the time zone offset meant that by the time I was done with all my other stuff in Toronto, it was very, very late in Israel. Time zone offsets suck. Incidentally, if you're looking for a way to help PDT, here's their list of BugDay bugs, for which they're actively seeking patches.

Digression aside, I've also been actively contributing to the PDT newsgroup and mailing list, fielding more setup, migration, and install questions. Phase Three: Feeling the Pain / Getting Your Hands Dirty.

PDT has had some tough times in the past with Integration builds only being delivered once a month and update sites that only provide Release builds, or incorrectly displayed requirements & install instructions on build pages. So, as Ed said, there's a pain: a pain that I want to help fix. And because the pain is personal, I've offered to assist with their build infra so that they can more easily publish weekly builds and monthly milestones, which they seem thrilled about. Clearly this is a shared pain. Phase Four: Code Contribution.

So... what's the point of all this? Offer your help as best you can. Do what you can to be supportive out on the periphery. Get your name out there. Chat with the teams on IRC, in newsgroups, or on their dev list. Worm your way in. Contributing to Eclipse means giving your time, but it should also mean ownership of what you contribute, because others need to give their time to process your contributions. The more you show your commitment & involvement, the more effective you will be.

After all, Eclipse is a meritocracy -- you have to earn your seat. :)