Monthly Archives: November 2008

Python 2.5 to 2.4

Last night we ran into a slight problem.  We are running Python 2.5 on our Macbook’s, but our server is running a very stable 2.4.  No problem right? Well kind of.

The first problem we encountered is related to PEP 308.  Someone who had written a RSS parsing plugin for Django, failed to mention that it minimally needed Python 2.5 to run correctly.  But this is one of the greatest advantages of open source.  I rolled up my sleeves and removed what the PEP calls conditional expressions.  I’ve always referred to these as the Ternary operator [or operation]. Continue reading


iPython on Mac OS X

What worked for me; short and simple:

1) Install iPython

  1. sudo easy_install ipython

2) Download the file/egg for Mac OSX readline, and place in path, then edit easy_install.pth

  1. Download:
  2. cp ~/Downloads/readline-2.5.1-py2.5-macosx-10.5-i386.egg .
  3. sudo vim easy-install.pth
  4. While editing the file add:   ./readline-2.5.1-py2.5-macosx-10.5-i386.egg

3) Run iPython and test.

Salute during National Anthem now permitted

A skydive buddy of mine, Arne, who served in the Marines just emailed me this:

WASHINGTON — Veterans and active-duty military not in uniform can now render the military-style hand salute during the playing of the national anthem, thanks to changes in federal law that took effect this month.

“The military salute is a unique gesture of respect that marks those who have served in our nation’s armed forces,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James B. Peake. “This provision allows the application of that honor in all events involving our nation’s flag.”

Which can also be found here. Nothing wrong with a proper salute by a vet.  Someone asked me today if I was happy being out of the military.  Hell no…I miss it, but it wasn’t fun all the time either.  The men and women who serve and the families left behind when they go off to fight dedicate a lot to this country.

To all the Veterans out there…thank you very much!

To my buddy Kurt….blue skies man…I’ll have a beer for you!

Earth Class Mail vs

I was reading this blog tonight and couldn’t believe my eyes! is claiming that is infringing on their copyright because of the use of the two words EARTH and MAIL in the domain name!

The irony at least for me, is I watched several entrepreneur TV shows that specifically talked about Earth Class Mail! I was quite interested and excited of what the company and CEO were doing.  Sure they had their problems with the start up.  Not to mention they rewrote their entire site to Microsoft’s ASP.NET barely finishing and pulling off fixing bugs before the start of a conference they were attending.  I was sorry to hear yet another company were accepting “offers” from Microsoft with no significant technical merit to back their decision.  Rather than perfect their product, they instead wasted precious time getting to market in fixing a new ASP.NET website written in haste! Still, I must admit, I watched the show.

Then I come across this blog, and find that Earth Class Mail is actually suing the domain name owner of! Are you kidding me? Maybe Earth Class Mail are borrowing lawyers from Microsoft as well?

Let me say one thing to this new company.  Piss off enough of us “little” people, and it will spread like wild fire…see you back on the streets in a couple years!

Anna Deavere Smith: Four American characters

I began watching TED earlier this year.  But it wasn’t until I purchased my iPhone until I began watching TED regularly.  TED podcasts have since been removed off the iPhone.  Instead, I download the HD version on my Apple TV.  I prefer to watch it in my home office or while in my living room without distractions.

Maybe I am growing old, but I have noticed lately I tend to listen more in conversations than to speak.  I find it enjoyable to truly process what one has said, combined with body language arriving in a few short sentences on the topic which we are discussing.

It is amazing even days ago that someone told me I am being too quiet during meetings at work.  I thought to myself; actually I only want to speak when I feel something is relevant.  I’ve come to the conclusion that people enjoy sharing their opinions, relevant or not.

There are also the people who speak because they are passionate or at times annoyed about a situation.  I use to be and still am one of those people.  My passion can cause me to dominate a conversation.  I would say I am making progress.  While others would say I am less passionate or disengaged.

The reason I am mentioning this is because I really enjoy listening to the stories shared on TED.  They host very passionate people who have some great ideas to share.  I don’t watch them all completely, but I give each one a few minutes to get started.

Tonight, I watched Anna Deavere Smith portray four American characters. Not only did she act out the parts, but the stories she shared caused me to become fully engaged in each.  Nothing seemed scripted, as she shared true accounts of research she had accomplished while traveling in America.  I highly recommend watching it! Anna demonstrates her acute listening skill by replaying her own encounters with these four American characters.

Overall, TED reminds me to be a better listener and consider what can be learned by each and every person I interact with in my daily life.  Listening better has helped me improve my personal and professional relationships.

Django 1.0 install on Mac OS X 10.5.5

I initially used this guide, but made some changes:

1) Downloaded Django-1.0.tar.gz from here.

2) Created and extracted the contents of the tar.gz:

mkdir ~/sandbox
cd ~/sandbox
tar xzf ~/Downloads/Django-1.0.tar.gz

3) Make the following soft-links:

cd /Library/Python/2.5/site-packages/
ln -s ~/sandbox/Django-1.0/django django
cd /usr/local/bin/
sudo ln -s ~/sandbox/Django-1.0/django/bin/