Building notes, projects, and occasional rants


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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

The Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is now on pre-order on Yes, I've already ordered mine. The sales rank lists both versions of the book taking the two top spots. Amazing. Some time later... There is something wrong with some people... From the Wikipedia article about book seven: In September 2006, Rowling was nearly barred by US Transportation Security Administration officials from carrying a working manuscript for the seventh Harry Potter novel onto an airplane, due to security restrictions, but eventually she prevailed.


For the past 3 months, I've been working as a freelancer. In September, I left my previous employer, SAPO, where I worked for almost a year and a half as the Technical Project Manager for the Jabber/XMPP-powered instant messaging project, Mensageiro. The switch was due to family issues. My second son was born May 31th, and since then the pressure of doing a 200km commute to Lisbon twice a week was getting a little bit more than I was willing to handle.

MySQL and UTF8 support

I've talked about this before. Basically, if you use UTF8 in your database, the scalars returned by DBD::mysql wouldn't have the utf8 flag turned on for text fields. Until now. With the latest release (DBD-mysql-4.0000), things have changed. A patch from Dominic Mitchell was applied (in DBD-mysql-3.0008_1 according to the changelog) that does the right thing regarding UTF8 text fields. Check the documentation (search for mysql_enable_utf8) to see how it works.


Comments and Trackbacks are back, courtesy of HaloScan. It might go bonkers while I tweak my templates, but seems to work. Old comments are still available on each individual entry under the heading Comments BHS (Before HaloScan) (like this entry). The old Trackbacks are still missing though. I'll get to them later, the solution I used for old comments is not that good for Trackbacks.

Not that I'm a user, but...

The Beta-days we live in are getting to a point that it starts being funny. Check out the Google SOAP Search API page. It stills displays the Google-traditional Beta-stamp, but the API had a vasectomy, as of December 5, 2006. Can you at least remove the damn Beta-stamp? Is not likely to change now, is it?

Alive and kicking

Yes, I'm still breathing. This is just a quick post to tell you all that I'm closing comments and track-backs on all my posts for a couple of days, while I move them to HaloScan. After that is done, I'll give you a big update on life, and the meaning of freelance work.

One of the good things about Subversion is that all his internals (paths, commit messages, etc) are always UTF-8 encoded. I think that was one of the brightest decisions they made. Yet, for quite some time I was getting errors when I tried to use commit messages with accentuated characters: subversion/libsvnsubr/utf.c:466: (aprerr=22) In my case, the problem is that I didn't have a proper LANG environment variable. If run svn ci like this:

Apple showtime

I've just finished watching the Quicktime stream of the Apple Showtime presentation. My first impression is positive, but there are some issues. The iPod revamps are nothing spectacular in my opinion, with the exception of the iPod Shuffle which I find truly amazing. The extended batteries are cool for some of you, but I already get enough juice from my iPod Video. The new search features feel strange to me. I'll have to experiment a bit to see if they match with my brain.

Google + Apple + Skype

Rui did the .Mac part of Google + Apple. I'll do the XMPP part: Apple is using XMPP in it's iChat client, but still defaults to .Mac accounts based on the AIM network. If out of this get-together we get iChat using by default Jabber, powered by GTalk servers, and maybe even start using Jingle JEPs for all the cool iChat peer-to-peer multimedia capabilities, then the interoperability with iChat is even more closer.