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Purdy (2383)

Purdy
  jasonNO@SPAMpurdy.info
http://purdy.info/
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Bleh - not feeling creative right now. You can check me out on PerlMonks [perlmonks.org].

Journal of Purdy (2383)

Tuesday March 28, 2006
03:29 PM

FF Extension & V

[ #29138 ]

It's been quite a while since my last posting. Wanted to write about two different things and save catching up with the other stuff until later.

Firefox Extension

Back in January, I had an itch to scratch where I thought it would be cool to have some sort of statistical monitor of Firefox's cache in the statusbar. So I dived into extension development and with the help of docs & the #extdev IRC channel, cranked out the Cache Status extension.

Firefox extensions are merely XML and JavaScript (oh, and a manifest file). They could interface with webapps (written in Perl, of course) to pull down information from the Web somewhere.

I will tell you that writing an extension is not for the faint of heart. There are lots of little gotchas in the development cycle. You also get wrapped up into how cool it is and then come the negative people with their own baggage, dissing your work. This gives me insight into what it means to be an open source developer – it's not all roses; the heckles & negativity can seem to outweigh any praise you may garner. Have you appreciated your open source developer today?

Perhaps we should establish a new (inter)national holiday: “Open Source Developer Appreciation Day.” I'm not saying this for me; before this experience and other maturation aspects, I, too, was guilty of heaping on the negativity. Either learn the lesson or walk a mile (1k lines of code should qualify) in OS shoes and you'll be appreciating OSD's out there everywhere, especially for those projects you use.

One neat aspect of doing this type of project is that your work is readily translated. I have 10 different languages already along with submitted work for a few more, when I get around to it. That's pretty cool!

V for Vendetta

We just came back from NYC and since we were sans-Meredith (staying with the grandparents), we opted to see “V for Vendetta” at a movie theater on opening day! I don't know when the last time we did something like that as parents, so temper my rating with the excitement of actually going to a movie. We both thought it was a great movie.

It also got me to thinking about our government in the US and how scary the current situation is. The movie paints a picture of where things lie at the end of the slippery slope that we seem to be on.

Where will the US be in 50 years? With the Patriot Act and current government infractions of civil liberties as well as other bills in the pipes that threaten other freedoms, it's too easy to glimpse reality from V's fictional future.

I don't have a solution – I know what would be ideal, but I believe we're just too fat & lazy (figuratively) to get involved unless we face a major threat (and yeah, I include myself in that).

Peace,

Jason

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  • I strongly recommend going back to the original source [amazon.com]. It's a lot less confused than the movie, I found. I still enjoyed the movie, I just enjoyed the comic more. :-)

    -Dom

  • "Where will the US be in 50 years? With the Patriot Act and current government infractions of civil liberties as well as other bills in the pipes that threaten other freedoms, it's too easy to glimpse reality from V's fictional future."

    I think you have seen one conspiracy movie too many. : )

    • While I agree that it may seem farfetched, there are several examples that come to mind.

      First and most jarring [slashdot.org] is a bill that was proposed that would have made it illegal to publicly disclose the existence of US spying programs. In some of those /. comments, people talk about how the Patriot Act is also being used for non-terrorism activities (child porn and drugs). Now I doubt such a bill would pass, but it really shows when the gov't actually proposes such a bill.

      The whole wiretapping thing itself is an