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2shortplanks (968)

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Mark Fowler has never been the same since he was elected leader of the London Perl Mongers. The strain manifests itself mainly in releasing various [] modules [] to CPAN, giving talks [], and use of the Trelane nick on for endless procrastination. Doctors are still seeking a cure.
Friday September 10, 2004
05:27 AM

Lots: article; Test::utf8; Tech meet.

[ #20816 ]
Wow. It's all come together in the last 24 hours something chronic. I've uploaded a new module to CPAN. I've had a lighting article published. I've given two talks at last night's technical meeting.

The lightning article's essentially on Test::DoubleEncodedEntities, but it's really about automatically detecting the errors that you can't normally see when you're working because even though they're obvious you're so focused on what you're doing you totally miss them. The theme was extended in the first talk on "dumb errors" I presented last night.

That talk moved onto talk about my new module Test::utf8 that I released last night. It's a testing tool for dealing with utf8, and along with testing if perl has encoded something utf8 or not, and if the string will fit in ascii or latin-1 it has some rather nifty tests that help catch when things go wrong. It's got a is_valid_string test that can test if a string that is marked as utf8 contains valid utf8. And it's got a test that (taking a leaf out of Test::DoubleEncodedEntities) can tell you if you've double utf8 encoded your string or not (or forgotten to flag it as utf8 somehow.) There's a new version of the module on it's way to CPAN as I type this following the feedback I got last night - it was pointed out that the name is_dodgy_utf8 was confusing (as it was testing it isn't dodgy utf8) and has been changed to is_sane_utf8

The second talk I did was the start of my campaign to get involved in the phalax project. It was reasonably well received and got a few laughs. We'll have to wait to see if we get any converts.

Aside from my own talks, the other talks were pretty cool too. Alex's live demo of his music editor which he talked about in his recent article was really quite cool and much more impressive than I thought it would be. He really can produce quite cool tracks just by typing code.

Tom's preview of his upcoming talk at YAPC was quite fun, and I think once he makes the modifications we've suggested to him it'll be a really good talk.

Simon gave a final "What I've been hacking on" which was a wonderful, if brutally honest, talk about what he's been doing and what stage he's at. He was unashamed in both pushing the new programing ideas he's been working on - extensions to maypole he's been developing while creating new applications to make it even more flexible - and pointing out that he never completes anything (and thanking Simon Wistow for completing everything he'd started.) We're going to miss Simon now he's going away.

That's enough journaling for now. And under no circumstances should I mention the variation of "Drink while you think" that was proposed in the pub last night where you use CPAN modules rather than famous people.

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