Python Programming, news on the Voidspace Python Projects and all things techie.

Python Meetup

emoticon:cyberpunk Just a quick post-mortem of last night's Python meetup. Not everyone who threatened to come turned up, but there was a good number of very cool people. And we did end up in the Cubana drinking bizarre cocktails until too late in the morning. Luckily I crashed over in London, so no bleary commute this morning.

The London Python meetups always have a great mix of geek talk and random silliness, and this was no exception. Good fun.

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-05 14:20:31 | |

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Cheap, Fast and Good

emoticon:note Sean Mcgrath mentions an interesting engineering principle in his latest article Innovation Thru Constraint :

"time, cost, quality. Pick two."

So you can have it quickly and cheap (but not good), quickly and good (but not cheap), or good and not too expensive (but not soon). Take your pick... Smile

I'd not come across that before.

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-05 14:17:31 | |

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Firedrop2 Plugins

emoticon:target Davy Mitchell has put up a page with several new plugins for Firedrop2 the Python Blog Client :

Firedrop2 Plugins Page

It includes several plugins not yet included in the main distribution :

  • A photo plugin, which will make thumbnails and links
  • A Windows File Explorer
  • Scratchpad, a notepad kind of thingy

He is also working on a tagging plugin, which should finally bring tags into Firedrop2 RSS feeds. If he gets this working, I will add a new release of Firedrop to my list of things to do...

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-05 14:12:39 | |

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London 2.0 & Python Meetup

emoticon:bluetooth Last night was another instalment of London 2.0, I think we're up to RC8 now. Smile

It was another good evening, around twenty people I would guess. As usual they were all interesting people, but I only managed to talk to a few of them.

Sam Newman is a very good host, he makes a point of trying to talk to everyone. It was good to chat to him a bit.

Both 'new guys' from Resolver came, Christian and Jonathan. Christian started yesterday. Christian's website is BabbageCLunk.com, built with Pylons. If you live in London, check out his experimental Movie Maps.

I met Phil, the creator of Bicycle Repair Man. He seemed intimidatingly intelligent.

I also spent more time chatting to Remi, who runs Webfaction. I would seriously trust my data to this man, and am considering whether to move my hosting over to them. If it wasn't a hassle I would do it in a second.

Simon Willison turned up just as I was leaving. Good to see him again, even if it was only brief. Again he asked if we could reveal what we are doing with IronPython at Resolver. We won't be ready for Beta until early next year. I am really looking forward to being able to demo what we have done.

Wednesday is time for Python Meetup, at the Stage Door, Waterloo.

I can't really spare the time, but Steve Holden is threatening to come and also Tim Couper who is responsible for persuading my Dad that Python isn't really an odd and obscure programming language [1]. Smile

I didn't get a chance to talk to Simon Brunning [2] on Monday, and some of the Python regulars weren't there... so I guess I'll be there. The Python meetups tend to involve even more beer than the London 2.0 ones, so it should be fun. See you there... Wink

[1]He lives in the same town and happened to meet him one day and get talking about Python.
[2]Who has just blogged for the first time in months, so it looks like Simon Willison might be there on Wednesday.

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-03 13:01:27 | |

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Domain Name Registration

emoticon:apple I've just registered a new domain name.

For UK domain name registration I use Just-the-Name. They aren't the cheapest, but they are very reliable.

Added to which they provide DNS Services and by default the WHO-IS entry is made private.

This domain name was a .com domain. I used GoDaddy, basically because I've heard of them and they have been around for a long time. Smile

They don't provide DNS services (name servers), so I've created a free account with ZoneEdit.

Also, they charge extra for a private WHO-IS entry.

For the future, does anyone have a recommendation for a US domain registrar who are no-more expensive than Go-Daddy (about $9 a year), but provide the extra services free ?

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-01 17:07:09 | |

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IronPython Category

emoticon:avocado I've just added a new category for this blog 'IronPython'. Smile

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-01 16:15:50 | |

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WTF ? (And IronPython plus Other Stuff...)

emoticon:globepage Seo Sanghyeon is one of the most prodigious members of the IronPython community. He has submitted patches to Mono to maintain compatibility with IronPython, and has provided various wrappers to provide CPython modules that aren't otherwise available in IronPython.

He has also created several patches to the IronPython source code that address issues the main team haven't yet been able to fix. Unfortunately the Microsoft team are (currently ?) unable to accept outside contributions. It looks like they could do with a PSF style license.

Seo has put together a special version of IronPython :

IronPython Community Edition - Fepy

This includes all the patches and wrappers. Version 1.0r2 has just been announced.

One amusing facet of this useful project is that it is released under Seo's WTF license.

It has been suggested that there are a couple of issues with this license :

  • It is not 'safe-for-work' and the language choice may cause the page to be blocked by corporate censoring firewalls
  • It may not be a valid open source license

Addressing the second point, Seo points out that it does seem to be a recognised public license. Smile

The binaries provided by IPCE are obviously most useful for those running IronPython on Mono. There may be a good reason to compile your own binaries from sources even on Windows [1].

The IronPython dlls are Authenticode Signed Assemblies :

When the CLR loads an assembly which has an Authenticode signature, it will always try to verify that signature. [...] This verification can be quite time intensive, since it can require hitting the network several times to download up to date certificate revocation lists, and also to ensure that there is a full chain of valid certificates on the way to a trusted root. So, when an Authenticode signature is applied to an assembly it's not unheard of to see a several second delay while that assembly is being loaded.

At Resolver we are investigating whether we can improve our startup time by using unsigned assemblies, and whether this will have an impact on users with reduced security permissions.

Other News

  • I've re-jigged the Voidspace templates and joined the BlogAds Network.
  • A New Version of Kamaelia has just been released. I've never used this, but the latest release includes this intriguing sentence BitTorrent support (using the official BitTorrent client). It looks like implementing p2p support into Python programs (PyGame support is also included in Kamaelia) might just have got easier.
  • Guido has made a pronouncement on PEP 355. This would has seen a modified version of path.py by Jason Orendorff included in the standard library to provide object oriented filesystem paths. It's a shame this has been rejected, but Guido holds out the hope that an alternative proposal may still be acceptable.
  • My Jornada 820 Auction on ebay ends soon. If you want something lighter than a laptop, but with a larger keyboard than a PDA can provide... hurry, hurry, hurry. Smile
  • I'm basically happy with Tradebit, which provides a very low cost digital shop for Voidspace. it doesn't give me full control though. I'm considering AMember which looks like it is very configurable and does everything I would need. (Particularly delivering digital downloads from a time limited 'group', providing several files (including updates) to group members.)
[1]Which should be trivially easy with the free Visual Studio Express for C#.

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Posted by Fuzzyman on 2006-10-01 15:00:04 | |

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