Sunday, January 30, 2005

RSS 2.0 Specification -- why RFC 822 date?

Harvard has the RSS 2.0 Specification online. Lately I was trying to convert atom feeds from blogger into rss with the help of xslt. Everything is relatively easy except the rfc822 date. While the month is easy to convert via

<xsl:value-of select='substring("JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec",$num*3-2, 3)'/>

where $num is the number of the month, starting at 1=Jan, this is not so easy with the day of week. Others obviously have/had the same problem. Mostly this is solved by some xslt processor specific external libraries.
Without the day of week name, the date entry is not valid. Luckily do rss readers like FeedDemon still recognice the feed.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

NetBSD Online Store -- Help Fund NetBSD | CafePress

Finally, NetBSD items are available at CafePress NetBSD Online Store -- Help Fund NetBSD | CafePress and not only at good will from some NetBSD enthusiasts.

Amazon.de finally shows the cover art

Amazon.de finally also shows the cover art of my book Amazon.de: B├╝cher: JBoss.

It doesn't make a big difference, as the book did not change and the comment stays the same etc., but when you look at the book list, it directly makes a better impression when the cover art is shown as well.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

The power of perl

The LaTeX-style of my publisher has some special definitions for environements. When starting to write my JBoss book, I started to use just the normal LaTeX figure environement. Today I thought that it is time to convert those about 230 occurences of

\begin{figure}
... some text
\caption{bla}
\label{foo} % only sometimes set
\end{figure}

into

\begin{fighere}{always a label}{the caption text}
... some text
\end{fighere}

I decided to take perl for the task. Ok, it took me some time to get into perl again after not having it used for years. But at the end the complete task took me 3 hours.

I am sure, doing it by hand, I would sit there the whole week. The pattern matching ability of perl and the associative arrays just make it a pleasure job.

Monday, January 17, 2005

How many books / items does Amazon have in their catalogue?

Since my JBoss book is listed @ Amazon.de, I am looking at its sales rank. First there was no rank given. Then I ordered a copy and after a while the rank climbed to around 1.400.000. Then I cancelled the copy again and now there is again no rank given.

Does a rank of 1.400.000 for one copy ordered/sold mean that Amazon has around one and a half million articles in their catalogue? Probably they have more, as not ordered items can be found and there are ~ 1.400.000 items that got sold at least once.

Anyone has a clue?

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Finally some time to work on OS again

Now that I am waiting with my JBoss book on an external event, I did not work on it this weekend, but was again able to work on Xdoclet and to help Andy to test the second milestone of JBossMail.
It really feels good to do a little patching here, a little debugging there without someone in your back with a MS project plan tracking your mouse moves.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Apple store not reachable

The apple online store is no longe reachable after todays keynote from Steve Jobs at MacWorld expo. It seems that everyone ran out of the store do directly order a new Mac mini :-)

Saturday, January 08, 2005

JBMail back from stasis

Andy Oliver is now back on JBMail, the mailserver project that he started. The first preview that I got in hands wasn't that useful, as it made some wrong assumptions about DNS servers.

In contrary to the last release, this preview is a binary one, including the whole ant 1.6.1 distribution (30 MB unzipped) :-( That at least explains why the package is now so fat.

But after this, the install runs fine if no TLS is used.

Running the mail service is still a little problem for me, as the name resolution doesn't quite work, but here on my Windows box, I am not able to tell if this is a problem with JBMail or Windows itself.