Some things I learned about dealing with RSI

The first time had a painful RSI attack was in 2003. It was as if my world collapsed: I’d dealt with hand weirdness since the late 90s (twitches, tingles) but I didn’t recognize that as symptoms of RSI. When both my hands started hurting and even everyday chores like folding laundry turned painful, I started doubting whether I could continue my career in technology.

As it turns out, it is possible to deal with RSI, not be in pain and have a career that involves a lot of typing.


Better filters for gmail with google apps scripts

At my workplace, we use github pretty extensively, and with github, we use organization teams. They allow assigning permissions on different repos to groups of people, but, are a really great way of @-mentioning people. This is wonderful, but sadly, github doesn’t make it easy for gmail filters to tell the difference between an email notification that you got because it was interesting to you, or because somebody sent a heads-up @-mention to a team you’re on.

I thought that was impossible to solve, but I was so wrong!


Deptyr, or how I learned to love UNIX domain sockets
Let’s say you have a program that needs to do I/O on a terminal (it draws really nice ascii graphics!), but it usually runs unsupervised. If the program crashes, you want a think like s6 or systemd to restart that program. The problem here is the terminal I/O: Since most process supervision tools usually redirect standard I/O to a log file, the wonderful terminal graphics just end up being non-ascii chunder that confuses you if you try to tail the log file.


Hosting my blog on Google App Engine with Letsencrypt

Editing my last post in Octopress was such a pain that I decided to switch the blog over to Hugo. While doing that, I decided that the yak stack wasn’t deep enough and that I should be moving my blog to https in the process. Here is my story (and links to automation shell scripts!)


2015 in books

OK OK, time to join in the book review fun.


Elixir: First Impressions
For the longest time now, I’ve admired Erlang from afar. It always seemed to be a bit daunting to take on. For one, there was the slightly weird and inconsistent Prolog-inspired syntax (I was always scratching my head over why this place needs a period and that place doesn’t), and then there was just plain weird stuff like one-based indexes. While you don’t end up needing indexes very often, a nice syntax on top of Erlang is something I always kind of wanted, but nothing really could deliver.


Write gmail filters in a nice Ruby DSL: gmail-britta
I’ve just finished (mostly) documenting and writing tests for my latest little library, gmail-britta, so thought I should release it to the world as a sort of holiday gift. Gmail-britta is a library that lets you write Gmail filters (hah, Britta, get it?) in a way that doesn’t drive you insane - you write them as a ruby program, run that program, and out comes XML that you can import into Gmail’s filter settings.


Some more updates
So I’ve been moving stuff off my 6 year old server to a machine hosted in Germany lately. I hope to bring back Boinkmarks on it some day soon. (Not in the way I brought back the git repos, though - no outsourcing for benchmarks!) (-: There are a couple state changes in my projects that would not warrant a blog post on their own, but I think as a whole are still something to write home about: I’m retiring the Jofr.li web site - it pretty much got obsoleted at birth by Twitter’s URL shortening thing, and it was just a finger exercise anyway.


Git lives again - somewhere else
I’ve revived the git repos affected by this outage - the cvs->git conversion is now alive again, and the repos there are now kept on github.com. Turns out there are only two more CVS repos left that I was converting to git: McCLIM and SLIME. So, they’re online again, and I hope you still find them useful. If you are missing any repos that I forgot to move, please send me a note.


git.boinkor.net outage
I’m currently moving some of boinkor.net’s services off the creaky old machine that used to host it, over to another machine. This affects git.boinkor.net - it’s not going to be available for the next 2 days. (With a bit of luck, it may be back up a little sooner, though.) This probably affects you if you follow the slime and mcclim git repos hosted there. This was caused by a case of really bad planning on my part.