UTOSC 2010 Day 2: Advanced Git

Git has become my favorite version control of late, so I was very excited about this presentation. With that, I attended Tim Harper's presentation on Advanced Git. We got started 30 minutes late, he had some technical issues with his content, and we ended up with only 15 minutes of class time. That was a real disappointment. I did learn about gitk, a repository visualizer. I think I have a somewhat better idea on how to browse around my branches.

Miscellaneous Notes:

  • rebase
  • clean commits
  • bisect
  • always review before you commit
  • git add -p - yes/no before it adds
  • gitk - repository visualizer. gitk --all
  • tig - console visualizer
  • git log branch1...branch2 - show changes that are same in both branches
  • git reflog
  • lose your head

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UTOSC 2010 Day 1: Twisted

Last presentation for the day was from Gabe Gunderson. We were all a little concerned that Gabe would show up. Turned out due to a miscommunication he thought the presentation started half an hour later. Oh, well. Life goes on.

Gabe gave us an introduction to Twisted which is an event driven networking framework. Sounds like a nice way to abstract away the details of a network application. I was particularly interested in this since I'm using Zenoss, which is Python based. So far I can't see quite how this will fit into anything I'm doing.

Miscellaneous Notes:

  • event driven network framework for python
  • MIT license
  • protocols and transports separated
  • network and gui share event paradigm
  • event driven means debugging is a pain
  • events means you have to save context
  • "deferreds" are returned by functions that run asynchronously
  • common classes: reactor, protocol
  • protocol.Protocol - wire protocol (pop3, etc or write your own)
  • protocol.ClientFactory - creates instances of class for each connections
  • perspective broker

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UTOSC 2010 Day 1: TORQUE

Second class I unfortunately came in a little late, so I missed a few things (including a seat!), which is sad because it was a good presentation. Scott McQuay showed us TORQUE. It's a cluster resource manager, which is a fancy way to say that it handles distributing jobs to a cluster of computers. Overall I was impressed with it. The only weak point appears to be the scheduler where the default scheduler is naive and a more advanced one is proprietary only. And unfortunately I can't see anywhere that I could actually use this software, but it's a good one to keep in mind.

Miscellaneous Notes:

  • resource manager
  • pbs_mom - per-node daemon
  • pbs_server - master
  • qstat
  • pbs_sched - basic fifo scheduler
  • moab - commercial scheduler with more brains
  • set number of cpus per back-end
  • jobs can be wall time limited
  • dancer shell w/ public keys

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UTOSC 2010 Day 1: VMLB IP Load Balancer

First session of the day was about VMLB IP Load Balancer, presented by Clint Tinsley of Inductys. It's a formerly proprietary application whose development stopped in 2006. They're now looking to relaunch development and build it as Open Source. Overall sounds like an interesting project which could turn into something if the project works out. At this point it's not something I could actually use, unfortunately. I'll have to keep an eye on it.

Miscellaneous Notes:

  • project dormant since 2006
  • persistent connections to real server
  • designed for 2 interfaces
  • supports 4 interfaces
  • no vlan support
  • no snat support
  • mgmg ip separate from lb ip
  • layer 7 content type awareness
  • redundant controllers
  • support for ssl processor cards
  • http/https/ftp/imap/pop/ldap/smtp
  • roundrobin/weighted/least conn/src dst hash/expected delay/never queue
  • service checks
  • redhat/centos 3.0
  • uses ultra monkey - stopped dev in 2005 - or not?
  • snort built-in
  • built-in help system
  • und.cgi - management web app
  • ssl proxy for back-end http
  • real-time monitoring is missing
  • code release next week
  • source going in github (ossvmlb)
  • release on sourceforge
  • custom health checks? does basic alive (ping?). adding new ones might be hard.

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Utah Open Source Conference 2010

In just under two weeks I'll be presenting at the annual Utah Open Source Conference again. This will be my third year attending and presenting and as always I'm excited. The speakers are top notch and the presentations are not to be missed. This year I'll be covering Zenoss, which my company has recently rolled out for our internal monitoring system. If you've ever complained about your monitoring system, or the lack thereof, you will want to check this out.

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HDCP Key Compromised

As confirmed by Intel, the Blu-ray HDCP master key was leaked the other day. Anybody who is surprised has seriously deluded themselves. The whole concept of DRM is flawed, namely that you'll give people access to watch a video (or whatever) but not give them access to copy it. If you believe that, I'd like to sell you some water that's guaranteed not to get you wet.

One particular thing in the PCMag story stood out to me:

The code to unlock DVDs protected by the Content Scrambling System have been known for years, and are protected by the DVD-CCA, which has sued companies like RealNetworks and Kaleidescape that have attempted to market solutions that rip or store DVD content on a hard drive.

Take note that both RealNetworks and Kaleidescape were DVD-CCA members who paid their license fees and tried to follow the rules. Both were smacked down. This is not about preventing copyright infringement, as evidenced by a visit to any bittorrent site. It's all about preventing anybody from rocking the nice little boat they've got for themselves. It's the medieval guild system re-invented. Nuts to that.

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Summer Of Pie: Sour Cream Lemon

You might have been wondering where all the pies went. Don't fear as they are not gone for good. The memory card with all the pictures on it went on vacation to the coast (it took my wife and kids too), and with everybody gone I didn't feel up to eating an entire pie by myself. But now that they've returned, I'm back in full swing.

Just before they left I made this delicious pie. It was one of the pies listed on Shari's menu and it sounded intriguing, since sour cream isn't typically a dessert food. The recipe is fuzzy since it's been a while. Essentially what I made was a lemon curd with the addition of sour cream. I took the curd off the heat too soon and it didn't set up enough. Gun shy about curdling it I suppose.

The flavor was over-the-top lemony. Using fresh lemons helped there, I'm sure. It could have used a good bit more sugar though, as it was quite sour as well. The kids were not quite as thrilled by this one; the oldest even turned down a second piece. Just not in line with their sweet teeth, but I did enjoy it and my wife loved it. To each his own.

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Summer Of Pie: Frozen Oreo

I'm still waiting for local berries to come into season so I dug into the non-seasonal list and pulled out an idea for an ice cream pie. I made a simple crust using crushed Oreos. I followed my normal recipe for crust, 1 1/2 cups of crumbs plus 1/4 cup of melted butter, but skipped the 1/4 cup sugar since the cookies took care of that nicely. The crust worked out well, having a nice flavor and a nice crunch but was not crumbly.

For the filling I made vanilla ice cream, from scratch of course. My sister had gotten me a vanilla bean many moons ago. It seemed to have some flavor left, but I added some vanilla extract just to be safe. The big debate was whether to use egg yolks or not. In the end I opted to leave them out as I thought the bright white would look better. I was satisfied with the results.

The flavor was great. My wife came back around with this pie, having been burned out by the overly chocolate pie last go around. I wanted to make some caramel to drizzle on the plate and on top, but I lazied out. It would have been a nice addition I'm sure. This pie will certainly make a repeat in the future, but I might opt for store ice cream just to save time. It would be fun to try some different flavors.

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Why Chocolate Seizes

As a follow up to my previous post about Chocolate Fudge Overload Pie, I found out why chocolate seizes and why adding more water is a viable solution to recover. It's all about the emulsion of course. The short answer is that chocolate is a delicate balance between fat and water. When heated, it's easy to disrupt that balance with the addition of just a tiny bit of water and the sugar will crystallize. By adding more water the emulsion is reversed and balance is restored.

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