Lazy Reading for 2011/08/28

This week has taught me one thing for sure: Always make sure your backup generator is working.  And over-plan battery capacity.  That’s actually two things, but what the heck.  I’m tired, for reasons that can probably be inferred!  I’m not the only one suffering these problems, it seems.

  • There is a certain subset of readers here that will find this fascinating: a video of a game postmortem.  Specifically, Elite.  (via)  Needs Flash.
  • This is as good an article as any I’ve seen describing where the tablet computer market is going, at The Economist.
  • Remember RetroBSD, mentioned here previously?  Here’s some discussion of it.
  • EuroBSDCon’s 2011 conference is open for registration, but the early bird discount only lasts until the end of August, so jump on it soon if you’re thinking of going.  It’s the 10th anniversary of the event!
  • PHP 5.3 is coming to pkgsrc as default, soon?  The PHP 5.2 -> 5.3 transition seems to mess up a lot of code because of some changes in the way things are handled, or at least that’s my experience, so watch out.
  • Make sure you aren’t running mod_deflate on your Apache 2.x server.
  • Kristaps Dzonsons, the fellow behind mdocml (which is in DragonFly now and mentioned here before) is working on a mdoc manual.  It’s an actual book, with examples.  It’s titled “Practical UNIX Manuals: mdoc”, which sounds like part of a series, though I don’t know if there’s anything else.  I’d sure like it if there was.  (via Undeadly.)  Look very closely at the mdoc web page and you will see the markup, too.  Neat!
  • Breakout treated as a musical instrument, in 1983.  That’s too glib a summary of this explanation of an old book studying the game Breakout and playing it.  Really, read the article, and remember that the book described would just be lost in a sea of blog posts noise today.  (via)

Your unrelated comic link of the week: Wonderella.  This is the comic that ruined Batman for me.  I can’t unthink it.

 

Lazy reading for 2011/06/12

A nice big pile of links this week.  Some of these may have cropped other places by now, but oh well.

BSDCan 2011 announced

Dan Langille has announced the BSDCan 2011 schedule/list of events in several places.  There’s some fun stuff in there, like discussion of Sendmail from the guy who (originally) wrote it.  There’s a talk about Roff (it’s that old?)from Kristaps Dzonsons, whose mdocml also happens to just have been committed by Sascha Wilder to DragonFly’s contrib.

NYCBSDCon 2010 was crazy fun.  I hope I can make it to BSDCan…

BSD Needs Books, the video

Michael Lucas’s “BSD Needs Books” talk from NYCBSDCon 2010 is online, in video form.  I got to see this as it happened, and it was a excellent talk.  Mr. Lucas is able to put some reasonable arguments together as to the why of things, since he’s been published multiple times, plus his sense of humor keeps it moving.

Hey, wait – there’s more from the conference on BSD TV!  How did I miss this?  Hopefully even more will show up; the facility was perfect for recording.

Lazy Reading: code repos, events, open source stuff

Stuff!

  • I find this erasure of the separation between remote code repository and local code editor very interesting.   It may upset more traditional people.
  • If you haven’t been watching the BSD Events Twitter stream, Dru Lavigne’s written a nice summary of the next few months, including BSD Exam dates/locations.
  • The XFCE 4.8 release announcement hinted at some problems with BSD.  It’s apparently because udev, a Linux-only product, is the only consistent way to access various items, so XFCE’s power and volume controls use it.  There’s no udev on BSD, so we get left out.  I’d normally end this with a call for a compatibility layer, but udev is the latest in a series of jumps from framework to framework in Linux, so I don’t know if it would actually do any good.  (Thanks, sjg on #dragonflybsd for the link)
  • The Economist has an article on open-source that does a hype-free job of describing the state of open source today.  It points out two trends that I don’t think are covered enough: the large amount of open-source work funded by companies, and the hidden costs of training and integration.  One downside of the “software is free, training costs money” model for open source is that it creates an economic incentive for byzantine configurations and difficult setups.  That idea could use some exploration, but I don’t think many people want to, precisely because it’s negative.  The article doesn’t go that far, but they should.