May 31, 2004

An interesting weekend

The weekend started off on Friday night, with Vladi Yankov's birthday party. He's still at Orbitel, so Iva and I got a chance to meet many former coworkers and current and future friends. I had an unexpectedly pleasant surprise waiting there - it turned out that Georgi Robev, a good friend from Way Back When, is also at Orbitel now, so we might run into one another every once in a while now :)

Then, on Saturday and Sunday, it was time to visit Stara Zagora for the 7th annual seminar of LUG-BG, the Bulgarian Linux User Group. This was my first time there, and it merits an entry of its own, along with the quite eventful way we left Sofia, so there will be one. In a word, it was great - stay tuned for more! :)

Posted by roam at 02:19 PM

May 15, 2004

MT 3.0 licensing - quit whining already!

I've been holding off commenting on the whole lot of hell raised all over the blogging community by the MovableType 3.0 licensing "swindle". The reason I've been holding off is because somehow it didn't feel right that my point of view on this should be expressed with a single sentence: if you don't want to pay for the new version, what's wrong with just using the old one?!

Yep, somehow it seemed wrong that everybody (or at least, everybody who was whining) should have missed such a simple fact, so I held off stating it lest somebody point out some obvious flaw. However, there seems to be no flaw in that, other than more whining like 'but the old version does not have all the super-duper features of the new one' - hell, it was good enough for us to use until now, how come it is suddenly *not* good enough?

The reason I *am* writing this now is that Dan Sugalski has written this up much, much better than I would have. So before y'all start flaming my position, please read his explanation and tell me what exactly is wrong with it. Thanks, Dan!

Posted by roam at 03:43 PM

All these worlds are yours except Europa...

I've gone on a kind of SF movie spree this week - and I like it! :)

2001-movie.jpg 2010-movie.gif

It started with an Arthur C. Clarke night on Wednesday - first Kubrick's masterpiece 2001: A Space Odyssey, and then Peter Hyams's 2010: The Year We Make Contact. Although 2010 was filmed much later, with much better technology and somewhat more realistic-looking props, it still feels like a sequel - and not to disparage Hyams's directing, but for me, 2001 will always carry a much stronger impact. Even the musical ouvertures actually serve a purpose - not to mention the silent close-ups of Hal. Or maybe this was because I'd read the 2001 book much earlier than the sequels, as one of my first encounters with science fiction. And if you've read the books, and you don't like them, well, "it could only be attributable to human error" :P


Yesterday, it was time to move on to another universe - or was it really another one? Well, Battlestar Galactica might be set in the same universe as the monoliths, but I think it's highly unlikely. Still, it was amazing, and it just served as yet another reminder that cinema and even special effects did not begin with computer graphics. If I'd not read about the "problem" of the Cylonians' chrome armor 'reflecting every single stage-light' in the film-making notes, I'd never have noticed - it blended wonderfully in the environment!


And tonight, I think I'll top it all off with yet another look at Escape from L.A.. Okay, so it's not taken any Oscars for deep plot or character development or whatnot, but it's still a movie that I can watch any time, any number of times. Back in '97, I saw it five or six times within two weeks - about as many times as HBO would run it... And Snake's theme in the soundtrack is a killer in its own right, too :)

Posted by roam at 12:43 PM

May 14, 2004

MySQL advocacy ;)

Okay, so MySQL might not have *all* the features of some commercial database servers, but still, it seems to have some redeeming qualities :)

Anyway, I like it when software just works...

The above was a quote (and a link) to the use.perl journal of Leon Brocard, whom you might or might not have come across in the Perl or Open Source world. Read his full journal entry for the details :)

Update: Uhm.. of course, in the very first sentence I meant to also mention some non-commercial offerings, too, and I'm sure I've missed many.

Posted by roam at 05:04 PM

May 12, 2004

C'mon. C'mon. Do it. Do it.

Starsky & Hutch. Enough said. Go laugh.

Posted by roam at 03:52 PM

Writing efficient programs

A great write-up by Randall Hyde: Why Learning Assembly Language Is Still a Good Idea. Even if you think that assembly is not for you (or maybe *especially* if you think so), do take the time to read at least the beginning of the article - you might be surprised :)

Via Robrt.

Posted by roam at 01:21 PM
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