Thursday, May 31, 2007

Mime4J version 0.3 released

The Apache JAMES team is pleased to announce the release of Apache
Mime4J version 0.3. Apache Mime4J mime4j provides parsing for e-mail
message streams in plain rfc822 and MIME format.

The 0.3 release is the first official release under The Apache Software
Foundation umbrella.

Distributions are available from the download page here:

More information on Apache Mime4j can be found at the Apache JAMES
project site:

The released packages will be also deployed to the central maven
repositories in the next days.

behavioral competencies

Apparently my employers will be "looking at" behavioural competencies. How alarming.
Spare a thought for us geeks who thought that we'd found a niche that tolerated a degree of social dysfunction.

I consulted wikipaedia on the subject, only to discover that the reason I can never type that URL is because they've misspelled the domain name, surely the c'rect English speling should be wikipaedia if it is meant to reflect similar roots to encyclopaedia?

Anyway I see the Scottish translation, a refreshingly down to earth work, refers to "behavioural competencies" with the reassuring message "The'r nae text on this page the nou." confirming my suspicion that it may be a load of poncy nonsense.

Open Source, Hostile Environment?

Some people have been talking recently about hostile environments in open source software projects. I came across this comment in code (while searching for "f**k microsoft", try it!:-D)
IMHO this truly is hostile and intimidating...

"Every time you put it back, I will come in and take it out again. I'm sorry. This field does not belong here."

... but on the other hand it can be hard to micro manage code in an open project if you aren't able to devote 100% attention to what's going on the whole time.

Didn't we already see this?

Palm, makers of the eponymous "pilot", have a new product, the "folio" which they're describing as "the worlds first mobile companion", which may be factually incorrect.
If we cast our hindsight over the 1990's we'll spot Psion (inventors of the eponymous organiserII) and the Revo. I had a Revo, its still in a cupboard somewhere, and it really was a phone companion, it let me manage my contacts and do my email with a qwerty keyboard. Before ssh was so widespread I even used it as a telnet terminal and re-started more than one server from the pub, though to be honest that was as much because I could as because I needed to.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Lifts and learned behaviour

It was bound to happen.
Since one of the lifts is out of action being replaced one of the remaining lifts has now broken down.

This has resulted in a new form of learned behaviour being quickly adopted by colleagues, who have been observed getting into the first lift to stop, no matter where it is going or how many people are already in it, and riding it in whatever direction, possession being 9/10ths of the law.

Dumbest use of [specify thing] of the [specify timeperiod] award

I just signed up for an account at - It should be aggregating my blog and my flickr photo feeds into one stream.
But no the award isn't for that.

However it did make me think what else I could aggregate, and I remembered that I could get feeds from Gmail labels.
So with all the talk about how much we could be doing with atom I felt that this award should remind us that technology is no better than the people who use it...

... The award goes to Google for Gmail's atom feed from the spam folder. :-) LoL.

If you have a gmail account check this out for the 100% most worthless use of atom...


This post should make it to tumblr

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Tory candidate who got no votes...

I thought everyone had heard the story of tory Shirley Bowes who didn't get a single vote in the English local elections. ROTFLMAO. But Martin hadn't so I thought I'd blog it for posterity.
What we know is that she didn't live in the ward so couldn't vote for herself, unlike the Arkansas Mayoral candidate who complained about the voting machines when he got zero because he'd at least voted for himself, we must charitably assume that her nearest and dearest were also not voters in the ward, because the other option is too cruel, but that still leaves the question of what she must have done to annoy the fifteen local people who had to have signed her nomination papers?

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

DDG 105 GRRG 87

Congratulations to the Detroit Derby Girls travel team on their 105-87 victory over the Grand Raggedy Roller Girls.
From what little I know of arithmetic this makes it three out of four for the DDG travel team this season. Sadly my new friend and Grand Rapids resident Dan was out of town and couldn't get to what sounds like a fine bout. :-(
In the absence of any pictures here's one from last year:

Dear Mr. W.U.I.P.R.T.T.M.A.M.S.O.C. Facilities

Niq pointed out an online government petition against changes in the Highway Code.

I looked at the list of signatories and was suprised to find someone calling himself "when u isiots[sic] pay road tax then moan about money spent on cycle facilities".

I'd like to put the record straight and publish an open letter to Mr. Facilities:

Dear My Facilities,
a) I do pay road tax (which, by the way, isn't all spent on roads), and council tax, and income tax, and a whole bloody lot of other taxes as well. I'm not just a cyclist I'm a functioning member of society.
b) I'm not moaning about money spent on cycle facilities, I'm moaning about the Highway Code, and my right to use the road.
c) You isiot, you just signed the petition.

Monday, May 21, 2007

My James slides from Apachecon EU07

Slides from my Apachecon EU talk on James can now be found here

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Normal service will be resumed eventually.

I hadn't come across Desktop Tower Defence before I innocently read this (No Nick you're not the last person to find it) and boy I wish I hadn't now! (Don't try it kids it'll f***k you up)

I suspect it's all a fiendish plot by the cybermen to get us hooked and upgrade us, evidenced by the blogfrenzy which it seems to have started.

Listen out for the screams.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

What Future for Apache Jakarta?

Apache Jakarta is a project which has spawned many significant landmarks in open source Java; Ant, Tomcat, Jakarta Commons, Maven, and Struts amongst many others.

In years gone by it was a widely known and respected "brand" which working java developers trusted.
I trusted it, I got free stuff to help me with what I was doing but more important than that I knew that I could make Jakarta my first stop if I had a problem that needed solving.

However the world moved on and two things happened:

Firstly the ASF Board indicated three years or so ago that the Members weren't happy that Jakarta should be as large, powerful and autonomous as it was fast becoming, and so after much debate the agreed direction was clear, Jakarta sub-projects would be encouraged and supported in becoming top level projects of Apache, deflating Jakarta and restoring balance and oversight. Most of them have been promoted in the intervening years, and only a few die-hards remain, but this is changing and they are now preparing to leave as well.

Secondly the Java ecology has changed radically in the past few years. Not only through the normal maturing of ideas and the distillation of best practice, but also from the introduction of resources like, the entry of other trusted (often commercial) players into the open source arena, and changes to the JCP which have resulted in JSR's actually completing their life cycle. All of these have significantly enhanced the pool of "trusted sources" that java developers can go to.

So as we now approach the end of the reorganisation of Jakarta we're faced with a big decision, should we consign the brand to the history blogs? Or does it continue to represent something valuable to Java developers?

Successful brands are hard to create and easy to destroy, if we act without thinking about it we might be making a big mistake. On the other hand I am too close to it now to know whether or not this brand still means something to people who are, like I was then, the geek on the street.

So Please let me know whether you think the Apache Jakarta brand is worth preserving, or not worth loosing too much sleep over.

Record your opinion: (If you can't see the drop down list below click here)
  • If you think the brand should be retained choose I agree.
  • If you think there is no longer a need for it in today's world choose I disagree.

Click here to view the votes so far.

Or you can comment here, say something on general@jakarta, or blog about it and link your posts to this one.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Most Haunted

If you've ever seen even a trailer for Most Haunted you might enjoy this silly video my kids made with their friends at the weekend. (you need to listen to it too)

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friend or FUD?

Jonathan Schwartz is quoted by Tim O'Brian as having said "There is nothing at all right now stopping Apache from shipping Harmony. Nothing, they are free to do so, the code is available they can distribute it wherever and whenever they want…We’re very, very, very focused right now on the GPL community."

I have to ask whether he (as a busy guy with lots of PR plates to keep spinning during conference season) has just misunderstood the issue, or whether this reveals an attempt to divide the OSS community and reduce their influence over Sun's baby.

I hope that Mr. Schwartz just missed the point here, which is that the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) want to be able to give their users software which passes certification, and
the use of which is unrestricted.

The alternative implication is much less pleasant.
It's well known that the ASF and the Free Software Foundation (FSF) (publishers of the GPL) have repeatedly failed to find enough common ground to achieve compatibility between their licences, and now that the ASF has come out publicly against some of the IP restrictions around the JCK (the TCK for JSE) Sun seems to be moving towards the GPL. Is it coincidence that the FSF's GPL prevents downstream users from benefiting commercially whereas the Apache Licence deliberately allows anyone to profit as long as the code is "free" (free as in speech, not beer)? I really hope not, that would just be bad for everyone.

**NB I'm not trying to score any points here, just saying it as I see it, if I'm wrong post a comment. **

Jason Donvan meets Change Analysts in sandwich bar

Australian star and de-facto brit Jason Donovan must've enjoyed himself in Glasgow this morning when he was fortunate enough to spot two local change analysts in a nearby sandwich bar. In a bizarre twist of irony colleague X (on the left) has just returned to earth from performing in the Gala World Premier of "Fame Forever", sequel to the infamous 80's musical "Fame".

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Apache is Java Community Process Member of the year

The JCP have voted the Apache Software Foundation as "Member of the year 2007".
In the light of the recent waves Apache has been creating around IP restrictions on test kits this is either very ironic, or something of a show of support from the other members. In either case well done to the Apache folks who participate.

Geir Magnusson Jr. told ASF Members,

"It's a combination of our broad and deep participation in
expert groups, our numerous implementations of specifications, and
our activities as a EC member, where in our drive to bring our values
of transparency and openness, we push the JCP out of it's "comfort
zone", in a constructive and progressive manner that is good for the
ecosystem as a whole."

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Even more spoiled ballots - how stupid were we?

There's a sneaking suspicion that perhaps it wasn't too complicated to vote but instead we're a bunch of idiots, as the BBC report that the total was even higher at ~142,000 or 3.5%.

New Lifts!

For some time now my colleagues (including the ones who made those xmas decorations!) and I have taken our lives in our hands when using the lifts. They creak rumble and twang alarmingly and the probability of being trapped in one increases with the frequency of breakdowns.

However a mail just came round ...

"Our Landlord has now finally agreed a programme to upgrade the passenger lifts. The works will commence on the 17th May and will not be complete until the end of February 2008. Each of the lifts will be taken out of service for approximately 9 weeks at a time for the upgrade so this will obviously have an impact on waiting times and I would ask for your patience during this time ."

So, one fewer lifts between now and next February. Time to get a desk on the ground floor I think. Or use the stairs of course. I hope the new ones are like the ones in the Apachecon Hotel.


Of course as someone just pointed out the Movenpick lifts made us use a swipe card, and no I don't fancy that at all, its bad enough having to use a proximity card every time I go through a door in here without the lifts joining in.
And come to think of if the movenpick lifts weren't the fastest in the world either. At least the lifts we have now are fairly quick, in the down hill direction at least. ;-)

Mailet Site goes up

Thanks to everyone who helped, we now have a site for the Mailet API.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Democracy was too complicated for many

I posted a few days ago that I though the voting for the Scottish parliament and the local councils was perhaps a trifle too involved, there were two different forms of PR in use, and that it might cause problems for people. There was some concern being expressed too, about the counting machines. Someone commented to assure me that my concerns were unfounded, it sounded at the time suspiciously like spin.
Well I appear to have had the last laugh. Lol.
While I was away at Apachecon Nikki voted for me by proxy, and whilst she maintains that it wasn't all that complicated around 100,000 people (about one in ten) still found it confusing enough and managed to spoil their ballots as reported by the BBC here and the Herald here which also mentions issues with the counting machines.
I gather that in some cases there were more spoiled ballots than the majority of the winning candidate.
Democracy? Maybe but only a wee bit.

Architect tools

Steve Loughran took the piss out of architects during the lightning talks at Apachecon, claiming that we (and when I say we I was the only mug to put my hand up!) worked only in M$ Word and PowerPoint. Well, I'm glad to say that I put him straight on that one, his blog post on the subject which proposes "ArchitectUnit" now acknowledges that I was right all along and there is a lot more to the job than that, namely Visio diagrams as well. Hopefully we can now expect to see our efforts recognised for the true value they add, with not only ArchitectUnit but why not an ant task to turn our priceless hard work directly into fully operational systems? Thus avoiding all the opportunities for mistakes to creep in during the so called analysis and development phases of a project, and highlighting the fact that innacurate claims in the vendor marketing literature on which we base our product selections is the *real* reason why IT projects so often fail to live up to their promises. ;-)

Sarcasm the anti-search

Just had a quick look at the search terms that have brought people here since I went to Apachecon, and I realised that some poor souls are being directed to my blog because the big "G" indexes my mildly sarcastic post titles with a straight face. Some poor person searching for "changed my life in middle age" found my post titled, with tongue in cheek, "this book changed my life".

Saturday, May 05, 2007

This is Apache calling The World, come in world...

When David came to talk to me for feathercast I wanted to take a pic of him in action, but it was just two middle age blokes talking, however just as I was leaving Apachecon EU 07 I spotted Rich in *exactly* the pose I have in my mind whenever I listen to feathercasts, so I snapped him with my phone. (I've never exchanged more than two word with Rich so if this embarrasses him I'm truly sorry)

Friday, May 04, 2007

Robert falls in!

2, originally uploaded by ki113rb33s.

Yes, that's right!
Robert Burrell Donkin fell in this dock in Amsterdam last night, with his bag containing his laptop.
Looking none the worse for his ordeal this morning his only concern is for his mac which went in with him.
Apparently the Axio bag it was in helped to protect it on its journey to the bottom of the sea. Lets hope the all the incubator docs he'd written over the week can be saved. oops!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Apache Mailet API lives

We've just finished setting up subversion and the build stuff for the Mailet API sub project of James.

There are still tasks to complete:

  1. Fix james-server trunk before the next nightly build
  2. Change the server website "mailet" links
  3. Create some decent content for the API website
  4. Get the web-site updated
  5. sort the svn commit emails so they go to the right list
  6. release the current version from the sub-project.
However its a big step, and one I've been looking forward to since James became a TLP.

Talk done

img_6490.jpg, originally uploaded by herberts.

Gave my talk on James yesterday, I'm not sure how it went, I can never tell. However its done now. I could've done with less material, or more time, which isn't such a bad thing.
If it gets accepted for Apachecon US 07 I'll definitely rationalise it a bit.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Blogger international

Damn fine job of making blogger appear in Dutch when I'm in Holland blogger guys, now how the hell do I make it appear in English so I can understand it?!


Hackathon, originally uploaded by ki113rb33s.

Well I got here, after a 1hr delay to my flight, and a further delay while the pilot drove round the airport looking for a parking place. "There's a space over there dad" we all yelled.

And lo! The hackathon is already progress.

flight delayed :-(

I know nothing, I'm not a fortune teller, and you'd be insane to think that I am. This disclaimer was cribbed from an email footer I once received. It is so ridiculous I had to have it for myself.

Statements in this blog that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements including, without limitation, statements regarding my expectations, objectives, anticipations, plans, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward looking statements include risks and uncertainties such as any unforeseen event or any unforeseen system failures, and other risks. It is important to note that actual outcomes could differ materially from those in such forward-looking statements.

Danny Angus Copyright © 2006-2013 (OMG that's seven years of this nonsense)