Neil's News


7 February 2008

Google took us all on a three-day trip to Disneyland this week. This was my first time to such a facility. It was an interesting trip. Disneyland is the only place where the wind blows in all directions at the same time. It also offers a vivid depiction of what happens when one has insufficient unit tests -- reminds me of some code I've seen. I also went out of my way to find and photograph this trash can; most visitors to this website will understand the significance.

After about three hours I'd exhausted what Disneyland had to offer and wandered off to find a power connection for my laptop. The rest of the day was very productive. Here is the resulting demo of highlighting the history of text edits. This should be rather nice for visualizing what has changed on Moo verbs. Amongst other obvious applications. Larry and Eric walked by where a group of us were hacking and gave us an amused smile.

While trying to compile GD, I got this error message: "Invalid configuration `powerpc-unknown-linux-'". Ok, not too helpful. Googling the message returns a Japanese page where a couple of people are discussing the same error. I can't read enough Japanese to be useful, but Google helpfully offered to translate it: "If you are looking for a pet-ri Chopstick covered sea, feel free to fill out the dragon under the law now sea air gun If you say, please fill out the actual shoes". I'm not sure if that's more or less helpful than Babel Fish which simply spits out error "157".

On the flight back the TSA goon saw my ID badge, got envious and joked about keeping it and using it to get into Google. Wait a minute. It is illegal (according to the signs posted in front of the security area) to joke about bombs and the like. So why can he joke about subverting my job, whereas I can't joke about subverting his job? I chose to leave the question unanswered.

Follow up: Five years ago I poked fun at the (apparently now defunct) Canadian Alliance for having if ("F" == "E") in their JavaScript. I was wrong. Although this looks silly, this was likely the result of a bridge between server-side logic and client-side code. The server probably used a lightweight templating system such as PHP or Clearsilver which had a variable set to 'E' or 'F', then they dynamically inserted that variable into their JavaScript as it is being served. Thus the JavaScript on the server's side would have looked something like 'if ([?user.lang?] == "E")'.

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