Go forward in time to August 2007.
I guess sprawl is a problem everywhere. It hurts to see cities like Xalapa, that were once small and pleasant, go to hell through rampant sprawling. There's zero effort to improve public transport, so everyone buys new cars and traffic becomes impossible. Forests and good chunks of ecological reserves are being torn down to build Walmarts and Home Depots. The son of the owner of the local supermarket chain is running for mayor, so you can guess how hard he'll fight to keep those green areas intact. There is a whole neighborhood of prefabricated houses, one kilometer from my home, that is not inhabited yet — because they haven't been able to plug the houses into the city's water infrastructure, as there's not enough water for that neighborhood.
Thomas: For GTD I use the tool I trust the most: Emacs. I simply have a big ~/todo.txt divided into sections (projects, next actions, someday, etc.) which I navigate using outline-mode (there's even a more fancy org-mode to do GTD in Emacs directly). It could certainly use some better integration with the rest of the desktop — click on a URL to gnome-open it, link to a certain contact or piece of email in Evolution, etc. But that's just a matter of lazywebbing for chunks of Elisp, right? :)
I'm in the middle of a 1.5 week vacation, which I'm using to help our builders make three ceiling vaults for the second floor of our home. Mexico has lost its tradition of vaulted or sloped ceilings. Nowadays, everyone builds flat concrete slabs — which suck for various reasons. First, they are completely uninspired, and they make rooms feel like boxes. Second, they use a lot of wooden formwork, which is basically impossible to get in Xalapa unless you buy illegally-cut wood, and which is expensive and wasteful. Third, flat slab roofs are a pain to make waterproof.
Oralia and I were quite inspired to read about vaulted roofs and ceilings in A Pattern Language (summary of the patterns). These require no formwork for building, are extremely solid, and can support big loads. The Manual of the Barefoot Architect also mentions similar methods for building vaults. And there's Flying Concrete, a fantastic page about concrete vaults in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
Funicular model in the style of Gaudí:
Day 1 was about obtaining the materials for the vaults. The original description from A Pattern Language calls for flexible strips of wood to form the vault's shape; we ended up using strips cut from a large sheet of particle board. However, these got very buckled when wet. Our builder had the idea of cutting a piece of rebar lengthwise to get two flexible strips, and then using these strips of metal to form the vault's shape. Then you put fine wire mesh over the rebar strips, tie it down with more wire, and lay down curved bars of steel which will give tensile strength to the vault.
On day 2 we finished with the metal, and put on the first, thin layer of concrete — about 3 cm thick. This layer can harden for a day. The next day it needs the final 8-10 cm of concrete on top of it, so as to cover all the steel bars.
Days 3 and 4 were about finishing the concrete on the first vault, and about starting to build the metalwork for the second, much larger vault. Tomorrow it should be ready for the first pour of concrete.
Aw, people... I am deeply thankful for the Pants of Thanks at GUADEC and the big ovation :) You've touched my heart.
It's amazing what we have done in 10 years. Ten years ago, GNU/Linux distributions did not boot to a graphical login screen. Ten years ago, using only free software, you could not do graphic design and illustration, you could not balance your checkbook, you could not download pictures from your camera to the computer, you could not do phone calls over the Internet, you could not create a spreadsheet with pie charts, and you could not plug an external hard drive to your computer and expect its icon show up on your desktop.
I hereby thank all the people that hacked, translated, documented, beautified, and marketed this into reality. You've given us freedom, jobs, knowledge, and an insanely great group of friends.
Sabayon 2.19.1 "Back to the present" is released! This release has a supercool debug log system to make better bug reports, and Michael Meeks's awesome support for OpenOffice.org lockdown.
Today I started merging Novell's patches for Sabayon back into the mainline, something which was quite overdue. The result should be a much more robust Sabayon.
In the process, I discovered git-svn. I've been using Git for a couple of months now, and while the learning curve is steep, it's worth the effort. I have a cheat-sheet of Git commands which could be turned into a little "workflow" tutorial.
Git-svn is awesome. You basically get offline capabilities for Subversion plus Git's nice branching functions. It's so nice to be able to consult svn history even while offline.
This is probably a good time to make git-daemon available in www.gnome.org, since a bunch of people have public ~/git repositories there these days...
|In a deep, heavy pan over high flame, sautee a thinly sliced onion in olive oil. Add a coarsely chopped bell pepper, sautee a bit more.|
|Add a cubed eggplant. Add some more olive oil. The eggplant will soak it up, and will release it once it's cooked. Keep stirring. Add a little salt and pepper.|
|Add two or three zucchini in thick slices; keep stirring. The eggplant will release the oil and let you brown the zucchini a bit.|
|Add a few cubed Portobello mushrooms. Keep stirring! Once the mushrooms start to get soft, add more salt, more pepper, a generous pinch of thyme and marjoram, and two or three bay leaves. I also added about a tablespoon of crushed coriander seeds.|
|Crush four large cloves of garlic and add them in. Add five or six coarsely chopped tomatoes. Stir some more in high heat. Lower the heat, cover, and let it simmer for a few minutes. Stir a bit, and turn the heat off when the tomatoes are cooked and pulpy, and the vegetables are soft but not too soft.|
|Serve with something starchy, such as these cheese-filled, fried potato cakes.|
This is very similar to a tian de courgettes, but with the ingredients in a different configuration. It's also much faster to make than the tian.
The beautiful Port of Veracruz.
Lately I've been using my old 50mm f/1.4 manual focus lens on my D200, where it ends up being a short telephoto and makes for a really nice portrait lens. I'm going to change the focusing screen on the camera so that manual focus will be easier; the lack of a microprism in these autofocus-oriented beasts is rather inconvenient.
Carlos Alberto Cortez has been creating some lovely patches to polish Mortadelo's user interface. For example, if a process gets pre-empted in the middle of a long system call, other processes will get to run their own system calls while the first call finishes. When you highlight the start or end of a system call, Mortadelo will now highlight the corresponding end or start, respectively (the start is when the process issues the system call; the end is when the system call actually returns). Here you can see that hal-addon-storage did an open() call and got pre-empted:
Go backward in time to June 2007.Federico Mena-Quintero <firstname.lastname@example.org> Thu 2007/Jul/05 10:45:26 CDT