Older blog entries for orlando (starting at number 14)

Various random happenings this week : (1) walking to work this morning past Chelsea Baracks a helicopter landed in the parade ground about ten meters away from us. not something you see every day. really pissed off a bunch of guys who had spent what looked like the last few hours sweeping all the autumn leaves into big piles. (2) found out that a guy i've been working with over the last few weeks is a master chef winner! now there's a thing. (3) found out that someone else i've been working with is closely related to the writer of the Dr Seuss books. now that's cool :)


off to france this afternoon for a meeting in the paris office. spending more time over there than here.

this week's random happening : walked past bob geldof last night just outside my flat :) he was wearing the most amazing burgundy red velvet full length coat.

interview with very interesting media company went well last week. position is web master for their apache servers. the work itself sounds challenging, much performance tuning/monitoring, building watchdog systems etc. OSS friendly too which apeals to me. as always now comes the wait, the worst part. haven't totally made up my mind yet if i will accept or not, but i figure such mullings as wasted until i get an offer, or not as the case may be.

nick is ill at home, michelle almost collapsed this morning for lack of insulin, simon still looks like someone is stabbing him periodically, and my eye is infected. they are at this moment painting a large red X on the front doors of the office. difficult as it's a revolving one...

bliss - shiny new E420 all to myself. getting it configured as a redundancy server for our main intranet site. going to be fun. going to be getting dirt under the fingernails. got most of it figured out except the mechanism to swap servers. looking at Apache:redundancy for it in favour of shelling out for some hardware.
other than that, didn't get the job, most pissed off. aparently not enough solaris sysadmin experience. getting to think i'm caught in the classic catch-22, can't get the experience cos I aint got the experience. still, soldier on.

it's been an interesting coupla weeks. first apachecon here in london. excellent, really good to spend some time with people who are interested in all the good things and to get away from all the negativity here at work. a lot of good stuff, particularly gstein's talk on dav and mod_dav. i'm expecting the momentum to build behind it over the next year or so, there is so much potential in it. having worked with it a little for a staging server in the last few months i thought i had it sussed, but greg suggested all sorts of possibilities i had never concidered. the subversion work looks particularly interesting. i still think OS level support would be very good for it, saving the need to build support directly into applications. IE5 goes some of the way, but stops short. it's going to be interesting to see if nautilus adopts any of it.

i was in Cannes at the beginning of this week for an other conference, this time on Vignette's V5 (content management system). couldn't have been more different from apachecon. very different people, motives, location. still not sure of the company as a whole, though it's looking more and more likely that they are the only ones who can provide what we need, short of getting a large number of people in to do a custom system. of course the latter would be more fun, but unfortunately i'm not making the decisions.

off to france again tomorrow morning, though purley leisure this time, seeing S's parents. bought some very foul smelling cheese from the covent garden dairy for them. fantastic place if you ever get the chance.

still to hear anything about the job. agencies are scum. they don't care. i hate them all.

a good mate left our wonderful organisation today. damn fine guy, shame to have lost him. here's to you, and thanks for the root account ;)

listening to spinner a lot recently. pretty impressed. saves having to either bring in a bunch of cds or mess about with mp3s. also exposing me to a load of new music which i otherwise never get. just found out fatboy slim is releasing a new album shortly, bliss :)

going home now.



long time no post, over a month. been busy with a bunch of things, particularly the job and finding another. the former is coming together at last after banging my head against brick walls for the last 6 months or so. my new boss is such a breath of fresh air after the crap i've had to deal with. understands OSS, laid back, and he listens to me. unfortunately i've already made my mind up to leave the place, they've done too much damage already for me to stay. did first and second interviews for a very promising looking position. laid back atmosphere, exactly the sort of work i want, no team to lead. haven't heard back as yet. very frustrating, making it difficult to plan stuff. i've just booked a conference in the south of france at the end of the month knowing there is a possibility I'll be leaving two weeks later. what can you do? ;)

apachecon on monday :) looking forward to it, both for the actual event and for the fact it will give me three days of peace from the office. the last one (Orlando) was fantastic. not so exotic this time, in fact I can walk there from my flat in less than an hour.

working at home today on automating some stats for out intranet. the powers that be have pissed around for so long (not) deciding on a stats package i've gone ahead and put webalizer in instead. works a treat, simple, easily scripted, fast, no faffing with some poxy gui and crap NT ported app that dumps core every five minutes (webtrends..). if anyone has any good experiences with a heavy weight stats package (30+ sites) please let me know.

listening a lot to badly drawn boy, and i bought it before he won the prize too.

entertaining some friends for dinner tomorrow night, still haven't decided what to cook. other than that it should be a nice quiet weekend.

work-none! heh, i'm ill so i've been at home for the last two days. actually feeling much better today, yesterday was pretty crap, muscle pains, zero energy. still, looks like whatever it was has passed now. nick phoned to ask a couple of things but other than that stuff seems to be holding together back at the ranch. thinking about a system to manage creation of logins for the various systems we have around the place. the whole thing is done in a totally hap-hazzard way at the moment, no proper organisation, no audit trail, nobody sure of proper procedures etc. thinking that a php/oracle based app would work quite well. emails sent to people when authorisation or info is needed. URL is included in the mail which takes them directly to the appropriate page. loads more to think about but the flicker of a flame is there. spoke to my ex-boss few days back. she practically offered me a job in Hongkong... i wish people wouldn't do things like that. a little voice in the back of my head keeps saying 'yeah go for it'. forks in the road.
!work-been messing with vi, learning stuff i've been meaning to for ages but never had the time.
noise-lock stock and 2 smoking barrels sound track.
work-don't you just love it when someone in the office has to talk to his or her young child on the phone with everyone else in earshot :) been away from the fun stuff for a week or two, dealing with emails, interviewing, meetings and stuff. hate it. just dying to get back infront of my bsd partition and a pile of xterms. there is so much to be done, a bunch of old apaches need re-building (i want to do this properly with DSO), new version of php needs looking at, new version of the openldap server needs to be tested and installed over the previous version, a proper structured way of building and then managing all the server has to be sorted out soon before it's too late, etc. if someone wants to offer me a position in the UK (london) that means doing this sort of thing for a modest salary then please get in touch, i'm going mad here. peep. toot. gibber. flaaaaaab.
!work-forgot my palm this morning on the way out of the flat. bugger. first time i've done that. got into the office, most of what i need is synced with my pc so no loss there. but i tripped up on the automatic reflex to put a reminder in my palm to remind me to remember my palm tomorrow. doh. looking at hosting companies for my site. bored of waiting for the old machine to be rebuilt, and i would rather have something supported and backed up even if i do have to pay for it. looking at Positive Internet.250 quid pa for 100 megs, plus php and full ftp and telnet is not bad.
noise-<rant>various mobile phone ringers</rant>.
work-first week back after 5 days off and i'm just as pissed off with it than ever...
!work-three day weekend, bliss. s and i are hiring a car and then just driving. no idea where we are going, just follow where the road takes us.
rant-why oh why oh why is the MS telnet client such a shite piece of software? why? how can anyone be even the least bit satisfied after having created that? i would be embarrassed to the point of refusing to release it and deleting the source. it's crap. it doesn't do very much, and it doesn't do it well, so why even bother. and the really sad thing is that it's been that bad for the last umpteen releases of windows with no change. priorities, that's the problem. too interested in the things that sell the software to worry about actually making it work. that for me is the main difference between open source and commercial software. as soon as you do anything purely for the money, you can kiss quality good bye. argh! doesn't anyone take any pride in what they do any more?

i'm going home before i break something.

work-bah, back and it's hell already. didn't even have time to eat my pretsel before the phone started and then the emails.. worked some more on the staging server, added mod_layout for automatic headers on all pages. damn fine little tool, must explore more. must also rebuild all the servers as DSO. compiling each time just makes no sense at all and is too risky.
!work-tired, headache, all i need is a quiet night in. looking forward to x-men in a coupla days with nick and erin.
rand-are two biplanes four?
work-none for a week, bliss!
!work-in amsterdam for the weekend, (what a jet setter, france last weekend). saw a bright yellow suitcase at the airport last night with thinkgeek stickers all over it, PHP, MP3 etc. can't get away from the stuff for more than a couple of hours :) lat/long details courtesy of ben's new gps : N 52 22 39.6 , E 004 53 57.2.

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