Tag Archives: software

Perl as a 2nd language: Modules

This is part 2 of a series on Perl, intended for experienced software developers.

Re-learning Perl has not been easy. Continue reading

Perl as a second language: Step 1

Why 2nd languages? With hello world, and readme.pl

I want to help other people kickstart new programming languages. As an experienced developer, you already what a loop is, or any other common feature: you just want to make it work. The goal of my “second language” posts is to provide that level of help. Continue reading

New Java 1.7 vulnerability

I found this in my email:

http://www.h-online.com/developer/news/item/Dangerous-vulnerability-in-latest-Java-version-1781156.html

I will disable Java plugin in all browsers on my machines at work on Monday.

Cert.org is taking this seriously: http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/625617

This could be used against Linux, Mac or Android, not just Windows, if anyone cared to try. They would not have access to root without further exploits, although popping up a window that looks like your Updater, or Microsoft’s, would catch some inexperienced Linux users.

Template Files in DITA Open Toolkit may not be needed

I learned in Eliot Kimber’s “DITA for Practitioners”, after some re-reading, how the integrator.xml ant script works. It looks for template files and creates the corresponding file from it. When the integrator script creates the corresponding xml file from the template, it inserts “stuff” (different for Ant files or SXL files) from all the places that add to that extension point.

As far as I can tell, and this is not explicit in any documentation I have seen, including Kimber’s book, you only need to create a template file in your new plugin when you have defined a toolkit extension point in it. For plugins that you are sharing, you probably want to add extension points to your plugin. For plugins only used in your own DITA deployment, you probably don’t need to do that.

Review: DITA for Practitioners, Vol. 1

Author: Eliot Kimber, XML Press

I will start this review with my conclusion:
I recommend this book for the DITA developer, and also for the person designing your DITA Information Model. Some parts are useful for the writer who is using DITA, but there are other books for them. Continue reading

Search in DTD’s on Windows – Fail!

So you have some DTD files: the main DTD files, model files, and entity files, in a number of folders and sub-folders on Windows XP.

They have extensions as follows:

  • dtd
  • mod
  • ent

Search for something using Windows Explorer, in it’s Search pane. Tell it to search all files and folders. Results? Only from some of the files, not all. Why?

Look at the no-search, no-folders mode of Windows Explorer. It offers to help you view videos, but can’t actually find any to show you. Odd, but related. This is because Windows is aware of a video file type with an extension of “mod”. So it won’t search those files.

Fail.

Let’s try the command line! You can use “find” to search the contents of files, but only in the current folder.

Fail.

Fix it with GetGnuWin32! And use grep to find your stuff.

paranoia part 2

The software isn’t out to get me, it got me already.

It’s not the “Sound” app, it’s alsamixer

Finally got the sound working on my laptop, running Mint 12 and Cinnamon.

The fix was to go to the Gnome Alsa Mixer and uncheck “External amplifier”. The “Sound” app on the system bar seemed to allow the same change, but it didn’t seem to stick.

I first tried adding more gStreamer plugins. No effect. There were already some gStream plugins installed, but there are lots and lots of others to distract you!

jackd out, sound came back

I have had a real problem with sound on Xubuntu for the last week.

The system says  “Welcome to Xubuntu 9.10” in the web page reached with “Applications > Help”, and “Update Manager” says “11.04” is available, so I think this is the system that was originally installed a s 9.10, and upgraded to 10.04 and 10.10.

There was no way for me to get sound out of this system. Many tweaks and such did not help. Windows runs sound fine.

I looked to see if I installed anything recently, and “Synaptic” said I had installed jackd – way back in October. I uninstalled jackd, and now I can output sound. I am able to record from a USB webcam, but Pinyinpro.com won’t use it.

One thing at a time.

Your daily tools: Tortoise and ls

Gui is cute, and sometimes productive, but GNU command line saved my sanity today.

Tortoise is a good GUI for using Subversion on Windows. It nicely flags all the files with status symbols on their icons.

Usually.

Sometimes it gets confused when a change is made 2 or more folders deeper, below the one on display. I don’t know whose cache is causing this – Microsoft’s or Tortoise’s, but it’s a minor issue.

It’s been worse since I upgraded to Tortoise 1.7.5. I jumped from 1.6.x to 1.7.5 the other day while writing docs for some tech writers, including how to install Tortoise.

I have several checkouts (OK, working copies) from the same corporate repository, all checked out in C:\svn. (OK, creativity didn’t seem necessary in this case, OK?)

Today the checkout I am most interested in was mostly not displaying its status icons. Yesterday I wasn’t as worried about it. Usually the entire tree was unaccented. Sometimes a folder would light up until I changed something. Then I noticed that all the “.svn” folders were missing, except in the top folder of the tree. Weird. I checked settings on a couple of things to make sure hidden folders were visible. For a while I had a grain of doubt that maybe the .svn folders were really gone.

So I went to the command line. “dir” didn’t see any .svn folders at all. That was because they were “hidden” by a Microsoft flag on them. “dir /ah” showed them, but not any of the other files/folders. Two dir commands required. Painful.

I have GNU Win32 tools installed, which is a port of the regular GNU tools to Windows.

So the answer was “ls -Al”, or “ls -A” for that economical look.

Thanks to all the GNU developers and those who ported and packaged it for Windows. You help me stay sane on the MS platform.

The site to download for Windows is getgnuwin32.sourceforge.net.