November 11, 2007: Email, Ruby, Perl, Podcasting

Oreo made me take him out late before going to bed and then got me up in the middle of the night to take him on a long adventure through Newark.  I’m not sure if he had a tummy ache or if he was just bored and tired of just laying in bed.  But it was a pretty serious interruption to the night and I didn’t sleep very well.

I am so relived to have my Java class over and done with.  I did not need that hanging over my head this week.  This week is going to be more than hectic enough for Dominica and I without having to deal with homework too.  We are going to be spending the rest of this week attempting to get ready to leave for the UK as much as possible although we are definitely in a scramble at this point.

I took the day to work on some serious Ruby scripting that I have been putting off because of the Java class.  Dominica split her day between some Perl that she is trying to learn and working on her program design for Empire State College.  We didn’t go anywhere today at all.  Dominica cooked us a late breakfast and we ordered in our dinner from Golden City.

Dominica also worked on getting iTunes, and the iPods set up so that they would be ready for us to take them on the trip with plenty of books to listen to as well as some walking tour podcasts which she is very excited about.

I actually spent a lot more time working today than normal.  I did a ton of programming and managed to finally get the first (and very rough) form of my Ruby logging utility working.  The program takes emailed log files from routers and firewalls that are sent to a central email address and processes them into a few basic components and then connects to a remote MySQL database and uploads log data into the database.  So I had to get IMAP, MySQL, some parsing and a few other things working.  At the end of the day I ran a small test and moved almost thirteen thousand logs over and it worked flawlessly.  I was very happy about the results.

My big project tonight is updating my Zimbra email server from 4.5.0 to 4.5.9 which is a fairly serious update.  That required that I stay up late so that I would only take down the email server when there wasn’t very much mail going through and people weren’t using the server.  I started working on it around eight or a little bit later in the evening.  As I feared that it might, it turned into an all night kind of project.  Anything this critical – who can live without working email – always takes a long time even when things go smoothly.  It ended up taking about seven hours to complete.  Most of the time was spent making careful backups and being sure that nothing was out of place.  Then I got surprised that the new version required a significantly larger amount of space than the version that I have been running so I had to add all new storage to accommodate it before I could continue.  What a night!

While I was working on the Zimbra server I had the opportunity to squeeze off the fifty-sixth SGL podcast!  It is short and not nearly as polished as most of the shows that I do but it has been a long time, since May 19th, since I have been able to get any show completed at all so I am very happy that at least this one was done.  I got it posted to Podomatic and uploaded to OurMedia and the Internet Archive which took a very long time as they have changed their architecture since the last time that I did a show.   I am really hoping that Min and I will do a few shows from the UK but the chances seem slim that more than one or two could be done with our limited time there.  We will definitely be taking a lot of pictures, though.

Don’t forget that the OLPC XO goes on sale tomorrow morning at six!

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