Python

[1 of 3] Updating your brightkite location using Google latitude

BrightKite is a service, much like twitter actually, but that uses your location to find interesting stuff. It could be a great tool to create ad-hoc gatherings of some group of people, for instance coders. If there were a lot of BrightKite users in Bergen for instance, I could leave a message on brightkite that I and some other Python coders were going for a beer at Henriks, and that any others that is interested could join if they wanted, together with the GPS coordinates for Henriks.

Great news in the software world

During the last week there has been a couple of great releases in the software I use every day. First out was Python 3.1. It was released June 27th and features An ordered dictionary type Various optimizations to the int type New unittest features including test skipping and new assert methods. A much faster io module Tile support for Tkinter A pure Python reference implementation of the import statement New syntax for nested with statements Next out was Mozilla Firefox 3.

Merging two lists

Lets say you have two lists, one of them containing the values [1,2,3] and the other one containing the values [4,5,6], and you want to combine these two lists into one list, like this one: [1,2,3,4,5,6]. Let’s see how this can be done in different (high level) programming (or scripting or templating) languages. Java Java has multiple list implementations, lets start with the most basic one, the builtin array.

New howto: Using apache to create an authenticated proxy

UiB har fått nye nettsider

Jeg har visst om at disse ville komme en stund, de nye nettsidene har vært tilgjengelig som beta en stund, i ekte web-2.0 stil. De nye nettsidene har nå erstattet de vanlige nettsidenepå uib.no, og har et tiltalende visuellt preg. Den viktigste nyheten er IMHO “Det skjer”-kalenderen. Nå har det blitt enkelt å få vite om gjesteforelesninger og slikt, som for eksempel foredraget til Richard Stallman “The Free Software Movement and the GNU/LINUX Operating System” 19.

Chumby phone

The chumby device is an interesting device, being one of the few open source electronic gadgets and all. But sadly, its the hardware that’s open source. And for me that is really a bummer, since I’m a software hacker. I’m not that confident with the soldering iron. That means that the fact that the hardware in this device is open source doesn’t matter that much to me, especially since I’ve found only one producer and reseller of the Chumby, namely the chumby store.

Unreadable code

If you’re really trying, you will always be able to write completely unreadable code in any programming language. All the language designers attemts to force you to write readable code, and even making it so the easiest way ahead, even for quick hacks is to write it as readable and reusable code will fail if you’re really trying to write unreadable code. This guy is obviously concerned about “job security”. (not the blog author, but the code author)

The value of tool…

… is greater than zero. Python is a dynamically, strong typed programming language. In my opinion that makes it more important to have good tools than for statically typed languages. Sadly, it also makes it more difficult to create great code analysis tools and IDEs. Meanwhile, I find more people in the Python community that is happy coding with Vi(m) even for quite large projects, than in the Java community. My guess is that that is because the tool support for Python has been poor.

Static typing VS. Unit tests

Okay. It’s kind of stupid to put static typing up against Unit tests. Even so, lots of people does so a lot of times in the discussion between dynamic and static programming languages.

Static typing provides you with a security net when it comes to typos. Alhough, it doesn’t give you any security against logical errors.

Blog meme: Phrase From Nearest Book

I spotted this meme on Steve Holden’s blog. Grab the nearest book. Open it to page 56. Find the fifth sentence. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the cool book, or the intellectual one: pick the CLOSEST. So. In my case, the closest book to me when writing this post was Python phrasebook by Brad Dayley.