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kungfuftr (5129)

kungfuftr
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Um... I'm Scott apparently... FreeBSD, Perl, Mozilla and hopefully some xlib.

Journal of kungfuftr (5129)

Monday July 18, 2005
02:38 AM

Not enough time!!!

BAH!

Things seems to be catching up with me at the minute and I've got a rather hefty amount on my plate.

  • Structural changes at work, putting more emphasis on me actually getting organised (not a bad thing though).
  • YAPC::Europe talk still to be written although it's now just fleshing out my outline. Still, 40 minutes worth of filling... erple.
  • Perl Email Project... I've been meaning to do some serious reworking of some of the PEP modules, but much to my dismay, not enough time yet.
  • Organising my wedding which is in less than 2 months!!

Hopefully I won't go insane before hand.

Monday March 21, 2005
02:40 PM

Contract work?

Bah!

The last couple of months have been a complete nightmare for me in terms of finances. I've been put in a really shocking position of having to pay expenses for accomodation that i lived in over 4 months ago because the letting agent buggered up my notice. Letting agents absolutely suck! Local Councils suck! They all suck because they don't listen and are only after the money they believe they should be after. No chasing the other fellas, they seem to have homed in on me.

So, due to this I'm now out of savings and out of loose cash. The horrible thing is that all these saving I was going to be using for getting a house deposit together, getting the last of a loan paid off and use in the costs of my wedding and honeymoon. So, being absolutely desperate and really just putting feelers out here it is.

Currently, I'm able to take off-site contract work for a reasonable rate. Other than the basic contract work, I'm also able to provide the following:

  • Code Analysis
  • Code testing and documentation
  • Profiling and optimization (pure perl only)
  • Abstraction and refactoring
  • Technical reviewing
  • Data modelling
  • System Development

Due to contractual obligations with my current employer I'm unable to do any computer security related items or e-mail scanning related items.

So, if anyone out there knows of anyone who's looking for a perl developer to do some offsite work, please lemme know. thanks!

Thursday December 23, 2004
07:00 AM

Perl Email Project?

I've been taking a great intrest of late in the Perl Email Project due to the fact that I'm rather paranoid in terms of my MTA setup and I've also done a few things for a mates company using a few of the modules from PEP. However, getting my MTA to work in a fashion that I want is becoming tedious and the size of my exim config keeps growing and growing. While exim is very nice and very configurable, the string expansion doesn't really allow for very strange configuration like I want. I know there's direct perl abilities, but it's still within the constraints of string expansion. So, I'm currently working on the following options.

Email::Envelope

Very simple module, basically, while Email::Simple deals with E-mails and their contents in an effective manner, it doesn't deal with information from the E-mail from SMTP time. So basically, it's just another simple wrapper that has lots of information about an e-mail and how it has been sent, and you can pull an Email::Simple object out of it as well as Email::Address objects (i think). This will come in very useful for the next module...

Email::Pipeline / Email::AMP

Rightio... more complex one this. The concept is that an Email::Envelope will get dropped into a pipe and each segment along the pipe will study the object and decide if it wants to perform actions on it. It can then drop out of the pipe with some other information such as rejection scores, quarantine, etc. The idea will be to make the system extremely flexible and pluggable.

So, this is funky and gives a lot of flexibility, probably more so than Email::Filter, however there's one big problem with using Email::(Pipeline/AMP) as a .procmail/.qmail style script. The MTA will still need to accept the whole e-mail including DATA before it can ever reach the pipeline script... which sucks, cos i want to save on my bandwidth... so..

Perl MTA

YES! I'm crazy, i want to write an ESMTP server just for use with my pipeline stuff. There's good reason for this though, and it's this... it's far more flexible than an MTA written in C!

Since there are no current prototypes, I'm going to blame Marty Pauley as I'm going to be going from a test first development approach. So, I promise that all of these modules will have a through testsuite and be extremely well documented. I will also be passing the distributions off to simon wistow and casey west before uploading to PAUSE, so that I can check that documentation and API suits the style of the PEP.

One last thing, I wish to thank my employer for giving their support for me to work on this project, though not on work time... =0/

Thursday August 19, 2004
07:51 PM

XEDE - xross-platform enhanced desktop environment

So... XEDE... what am I on about?

Well, for a long time I've been intrested in the Mozilla Application Framework and for a long time I've been thinking about doing quite a large, scary project. The basic idea of it all, is to have a window manager where one can implement all the functionality and User Interface using XUL and scriptable languages. So why the hell would someone want to do this? Well... XUL is an XML based User Interface format that works just like any other rendered stuff on the gecko rendering engine. This means that everything you touch within firefox or the mozilla suite is rendered from files that you can edit with any text editor without compiling. So... Javascript/CSS/XUL/XBL are all very quick and easy, making mozilla a very rapid framework for development.

But I'm talking about X11 protocol... that's all very complex and there's no way that the mozilla developers have ever thought about that. Well, it doesn't matter; Mozilla relies on a technology called XPCOM to provide functionality from other components. So this means that if I have a C++ library for doing X11 window management style things, I can use XPCOM in connection with XPConnect to call all that C++ code from Javascript (funky, eh?).

So why am I talking about this? Well... I've been doing a lot of research on this for several months and started on the X11 code (even though it drove me up the wall). Since then, my laptop was nicked (along with all the code... argh), Xorg has come into existence and I've been given a huge grounding in Javascript 1.5 techniques along with user interface design. Unfortunately, C++ is not my forte and neither is X11, and it's incredably detremental on ones confidence to keep bumping into issues which you're rather out of depth on. So, I need help... even just someone to bounce stuff off in relation to C++ code and X11. If you can help out, please let me know and e-mail me at scott -at- kungfuftr -dot- com

thanks!

07:28 PM

Life Changes

A lot seems to be changing in my life at the moment. Later today I will be having my final day of employment at Surrey Technologies, which is a shame in many ways. I work with a great team of people, I've learned alot and I've got to play with a lot of very funky and lovely technolgy ranging from tangram and secure network daemons to cross-browser javascript toolkits. However things change and I needed to move jobs, so from the end of the month I'll be working as a Perl Programmer at Sophos (yay!). As part of this, I'll be having to comute, so today I'm getting my first ever car... woot!

So, next on the cards... trip up to edinburgh to visit my fiancee and then a trip back home to Belfast for YAPC::EU 2004.

Friday August 06, 2004
12:58 AM

Javascript, the myths?

The interweb has seen the rise of absolutely horrible code that's freely available. This applies across the languages and even perl (shock-horror). Poor Javascript has always been on the net and is always coming back to haunt us. This has been made even worse by the fact that different browsers have different implementations of javascript.

So why am I even talking about this? Well... at my current company, we've got some very very funky tangram based frameworking and a lot of it is concerned with Javascript. Basically we've designed a toolkit that's mainly cross-browser and our tangram framework has been made into a RAD tool... all our data infrastructure automatically generates javascript widgets on the front side. I was hoping to have done a talk about this at YAPC::EU::2004, lest it's not going to happen.

So, this is all proprietary... so not much use to you fellas, so why am I talking about it? Well... my housemate who works with me, is now doing a toolkit that's been written from scratch at a 3rd generation. Oh yes... it's LGPL =0)

http://webtk.sf.net

Saturday July 03, 2004
10:34 PM

Mozilla and CPAN

Woot!
There's so many more reasons to like mozilla and this is one of them. I now have a search box for search.cpan.org embedded in my browser and it only took about 20 lines of markup (not even code). If you want it too, then just visit the following:
search.cpan.org

Wednesday June 30, 2004
12:31 PM

Mozilla

Mozilla... i loves it... I'm not just talking about the browser, but the project as a whole. I mean everyone know about the mozilla suite, firefox, thunderbird, chatzilla and even the spin offs like camino and galeon, but there is so much more to it:

  1. Branding...
    For those who've been looking at mozilla lately, they'll notice a nice site and polished graphics, but i've been around mozilla since the suite was in it's 0.5/0.6 stage and it's been a hell of an improvement. Now that mozilla has moved out from under the grasp of AOL, it appears that the project is really concentrating on the end user, which is sorely lacking from many open source projects.

  2. Framework...
    I've been looking at the mozilla framework for quite some time now and it's amazing. It's got a lovely rendering engine called 'gecko' and produces nice standards compliant screens for it. What most people don't realise is that when netscape started the gecko rendering engine, they designed it to not just render HTML, but also other SGML style languages. In the instance of the browser... not only is the HTML being rendered, but the browser interface itself is (via XUL). As well as the loveliness of gecko, there's also things like XPCOM and XBL, which allow you to define your own CORBA style interfaces to elements and this allows any interface to be used wether from python, C, C++ or javascript.

  3. Standards compliancy
    This is an incredably important thing these days and at my current job, it's something that we run into everyday. We currently have a javscript based framework which needs to work cross-browser and not only do we have CSS woes (IE only _truly_ supports CSS1) but the javascript DOM interface is nightmarish. The hacks to make IE work in a sane way are probably as long as the functional code in mozilla would be. This isn't to say mozilla doesn't have its faults... but they're a hell of a lot less.

I'm having a bawl with mozilla and shortly will be trying to get a nice xlib XPCOM interface setup so that i can have a mozilla framework based window manager and desktop toolkit. The one thing i really miss within the framework, is the ability to use perl with it... there was a perl XPCOM binding several years back, but it became unmaintained and no longer works. If I was quite daring i might have a try, but I believe it'd be out of my sphere of knowledge. Why would perl be nice to use in a mozilla framework based system? mainly... because the rendering engine works on the fly, more rapid development cycle, you'd be able to use things like Class::DBI, Template::Toolkit and the like directly with GUI components! nuff said... mozilla project rocks...