Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   geese in the gusts
Thursday, October 17 2019
This morning on the drive to work, the sky was full of wild angry clouds that seemed to be whipped around by strong winds, though, initially at least, these winds didn't reach the ground. I saw a flock of geese heading southward, and they apparently kept encountering sudden downdrafts that would make a section of the flock appear to dive in unison. They'd quickly recover and soldier on, only to hit another patch of uncomfortable air. I don't think I've seen geese battling such irregular winds before.

In my department at my workplace, we've been using my importer for six months now, and at this point it has completely supplanted our older methods of data importation. But I'd yet to actually present it to other members of the department except Alex (the department head). Earlier this week, he announced that on Friday I would be presenting it formally to the others in the department. They all already know about it and have even provided guidance on improvements, but I've never actually shown how it works to anyone but Alex. Knowing other coders would soon be seeing the fruits of my an effort that has taken nearly a year, today I made a mad dash to improve its most impressive (and still underutilized) piece: the reporting component. My experience with building the reporting component on the Mercy For Animals CRM gave me a deep awareness of what features were useful and what could be back-burnered. Things like the ability to upload and arbitrarily manipulate spreadsheets was something that could wait, but now that I was supporting online (web-based) editing of reports, it seemed that providing a better text editor than an HTML textarea would be a good return on investment (if there was a plugin available and it was easy to wire up). It hadn't been easy to get a code editor working on the proprietary Javascript framework powering the Mercy For Animals CRM, but once I'd done it (a little less than two years ago), it had made online report editing much more pleasant. Early indications this morning were that wiring up vendor plugins in Angular would be super easy. It took only a few minutes, for example, to get a SQL highlighter called ngx-highlightjs to make beautifully colorful renderings of SQL previews. Such displays were read-only, and what I was going for was more like a small web-based version of Sublime Text. My first attempt was with a plugin called ngx-monaco-editor. But after an hour or so of struggle I gave up, knowing there were other alternatives in the vast world reachable by npm install. My second try was with something called ng2-ace-editor, and it worked great once I figured out the dependencies (it requires something called braces for it syntactic highlighting and theming information, an essential piece of information that is mysteriously absent from its documentation). I still kind of hate Angular, but if wiring up plugins is going to be this easy, my opinion could change.
Another big improvement to the reporting component was a tabbed navigation system similar to (but better than) the one I'd developed for the reporting system on the Mercy For Animals CRM.

It was raining again on the drive home from work, though it had largely stopped by the time I got home. This meant that I could go do more work on the stone wall. The recent rains had softened up the ground enough to let me extract a number of conveniently close-by rocks that had resisted my efforts in drier conditions.

This evening the old Mercy For Animals IT Department diaspora had another of its occasional videochat happy hours. There wasn't much new news. Cameron had recently run a whole marathon and is now using a dating app called Hinge (though his date tonight didn't work out), Dan is in the final month of his wife's pregnancy, and Allison is contemplating a possible move to Washington, DC, though this would require finally separating from her unhygenic boyfriend, Pickle Matt. "There are other pickles in the sea," I pointed out. "They might be smaller, but they're probably cleaner," she and Dan agreed.

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