August 2004

Uploading from OS X

If you are reading this on-line then I have finally managed to alter my Expect script to work with the Mac OS X version of ftp. This is part of the long drawn-out battle to transfer my projects to my PowerBook so that my old desktop (circa 1998) can be repurposed. Read more

Demand-dialled modem configuration on Debian (Sarge)

Debian GNU/Linux has excellent configuration dialogues for almost every aspect of the newly installed operating system. One fly in the ointment is that -- just as when I installed Red Hat 6.1 six years ago -- they do not account for people who might want their sysem to automatically dial up to the internet on demand. (For the sake of Google, I mention the terms auto-dial, autodial, and intermittent connection.) Read more

MU compared with ...

I have been outlining a hypothetical alternative to XML that I am calling MU. In this note I compare MU to some other mark-up notations. Read more

Why XML is bad for data serialization

A lot of people use XML to serialize data structures; with the XML parsers bundled with many programming environments it is easier than writing one's own parser. But XML was not designed with this in mind and contains too many traps causzed by the mismatch between the XML object model and that of your application. A text format designed expressly for for the purpose (my favourite is YAML) would be more convenient and safer. Read more