I got bored of having two windows open and having to copy the ISBN from the O’Reilly site, tab to the amazon.co.uk window, paste in to the search box and press return. And when I was looking at more than a single book it got worse… So in a fit of laziness that cost me two hours I wrote my first Greasemonkey user script; which I called O’Reilly ISBN Link2Amazon.co.uk. The script is pretty simple, it replaces the plain text ISBN on the O’Reilly catalog pages with a link to the book at Amazon.co.uk My JavaScript is terrible and so it took way too long for me to put together and it’s got a very hacky ISBN extractor. Read on →

I’m a big fan of the “big three” scripting languages, Perl, Python and Ruby, but I don’t get a lot of time to keep up with all the relevant news. Fortunately you can now download and listen to the official Ruby on Rails Podcast or the ever growing Perlcast.

While reading the comments at the Digitial Rights Pledge page I noticed one by D Walker: “Digital Rights” would too easily be muddled up with “Digital Rights Management”, which in itself should be called “Digital Restrictions Management”. It’s an ever so small point but I think it’s important; Digital Restrictions Management is a much better name than “Digital Rights Management”. It pushes the point that it’s taking things away from Read on →

Over the last couple of years comic book fans have been spoiled by some great big-screen adaptations. Spiderman 1 and 2 (which NEED more witty one-liners from the wall crawler), X-Men 2, HellBoy and Sin City have all been enjoyable and lived up to the franchises that spawned them. We’ve also been witness to some truly dire moments, Catwomen and Electra spring to mind. So where does Fantastic Four fit? It’s pretty average. Read on →

If you add a NOPASSWD directive in your sudoers file then you can, as you’d expect from its name, use those commands without a password. This is a pretty useful trick that allows you to set up sudo entries that allow commands to be run with different privileges from cron without requiring the setuid flag. However twice this week I’ve seen a similar question asked on mailing lists and I thought I’d stick this entry up, hope google indexes it and saves me from ever seeing it again. Read on →

There’s something up at connection.oreilly.com… will it be another jobs site or do they have an ace up their collective, animal decorated, sleeves?

For a small play project I needed the ability to pull down all the DVDs from a given persons Amazon wishlist. After a quick look on CPAN two main options presented themselves, first up we have WWW::Amazon::Wishlist. The module has an easy to use interface, doesn’t require an Amazon developer token (it’s a naughty screen-scraper) and doesn’t need any XML modules. Unfortunately while it has no problems getting books I couldn’t get it to download any of the DVDs from the wishlist so I moved on. Read on →

Yesterday was my last day at my now-previous employers, For the rest of this week I’m on emergency phone support only (which they’ll never have to use as things pretty much work). Next week I’m at the UKUUG conference in Swansea and then a couple of days after I get back I start my new job at one of Londons premier OpenSource and Perl companies. No, not the BBC. ;) I’ve been thinking about why I only stayed for a year at a company that has a hell of a lot of potential and some very top notch people and I’ve come up with a couple of ideas, how valid they are I guess I’ll work out over time. Read on →

I’m going to take a break from my session by session breakdown and point out some other resources instead. OpenTech Recordings OpenTech photos on Flickr. I even show up in some; but if you're lucky you won't see notice those ones ;) OpenTech del.icio.us tag. OpenTech Technorati search OpenTech coverage at Newsforge. I really enjoyed OpenTech and the organisers did an excellent job with the venue, speakers and keeping everything moving. Read on →

James Larsson’s talk was a short, media clip packed one in which he presented things you shouldn’t do with hardware. From playing music through a monitor (very cool visual effects) to a very sick mouse-trap made from a broken monitor to removing capacitors from a running system until it crashed the videos were amusing but worrying. This man must never even look at my laptops…