Monday, December 25, 2006


i've always wondered why so many developers leave documentation for their applications, libraries and other things online, as in on web pages that are problematic to get offline. i do realise that developing is a labourious process, and creating documentation makes it more so, but if you really want to release your program/library/toolkit for general use, make sure there's some documentation that users can get. on my former blog, i ranted about the availability of offline documentation for Blender. it seems as though the ASP.NET AJAX team want me stuck online. dude, it's expensive for me to stay online, but if i want the documentation for ASP.NET AJAX, i need to. that just means i can't use it until they let me have an offline copy of the docs. ah, well. i just hope i don't do the same thing.

Christmas is troublesome!

so here i am in school, and it being the 25th of December, too! due to the "festive" season, i haven't left school for home because of the traffic jams between school and Lagos. i heard some people spent over 14 hours on the road. dude, that majorly sucks! i haven't left for home yet, maybe that's why i'm feeling some saaki from home. okay, maybe it isn't killing, but i feel like i will get sacrified once i get home. so i hope to get home today. and am i bored stiff in school!

i can't send a text message to my sister, even though i've been trying over the last two hours. i'm not surprised, though - the empty network has its limits. i mean, with everyone and their dog trying to communicate at this time, even a stellar network (which the empty network is not) would be hard-pressed to deliver hiccup-free services.

this year, Christmas is on a monday (arrgh!). i don't beef the season, only the mindless activity that fills so many lives just about this time. it's really dumb seeing so many people fritter away time and money without thinking. Christmas itself has lost what it should mean - not that it started out meaning that anyway. anyhow, guess, we'll see later. (i can't believe i'm doing this) merry Christmas! and God bless us, everyone!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

erm, so what was i going to talk about again?

can't remember. or don't want to talk about it anymore. works the same both ways. anyhow, wish those who celebrate christmas a merry one. not quite sure i'll blog agin before next year, still…anyhow, see y'all!

Saturday, December 16, 2006

It's that season of the year again...

dude, lots of new versions of software is showing up just now - just in time for Christmas, heh, heh! among some of the new versions of software showing up are:

  • wxWidgets 2.8 has been released. finally, they release the documentation for the current version (how come i wasn't told that version 2.7 wasn't stable?)! grab your copy if you use it.
  • VideoLAN VLC player has hit version 0.8.6. An excellent player, you might want this handy for that day you feel like streaming that audio all over your network…as far as i can tell, it still doesn't support Real media files, but i guess maybe the maintainers might add that, what with all the activity going on at the Helix Community, some miracle might occur, though i'm not holding my breath because of licensing issues…
  • lately, software giant Microsoft has been really nice to some of us who can afford to shell out precious $$$ for software. Lots of software development tools are available from the Redmond company. Rather recently, the new XNA Game Studio Express is production-ready and waiting for the next great game developer. Got .NET? Want to create games using Visual C# Express Edition? Will travel (actually, travelling isn't necessary, but downloading is)? Will not create XBox 360 titles without a license? then get this one. 'Nuff said.
  • still talking about Microsoft, the new home page debuted two days ago. and i can find a link to free accounting software software there. eh??? a contest to win retail space in NY plus $100,000 (USD i guess) to get your business started? i smell a big, fat, rat. sorry, i smell the work of a bunch of guys who want to take over the world.
  • And for the company that wanted to give me a heart attack recently - Planetside Software. Yes, the long-awaited release of Terragen 2 Tech Preview is finally here. maybe it's me, but i'm sure i scanned the entire site yesterday and never found the download link. fortunately, i googled this morning and found the link to the download before i could give them a piece or two of my (much-needed) mind. all's well that ends in the well, i suppose. i now have a shiny new Terragen 2 Tech Preview download, and i'm retaining all the pieces of my mind too ;). well, here's the link to the download page. i wish Planetside many sales of this one (hopefully, i'll be able to afford it when it finally is production-quality).

well, gotta go. other things await my perusal. later!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Women are troublesome!

after mulling about it, i guess i'll just leave the header and this note. if you're a guy, i'm sure you'll have your own experiences with woman trouble. and this really has zilch to do with romance or any such thing. relating with them can be such a pain. arrgggh! if someone can tell me just how to live with them, but without their trouble, i'd listen.


ever since i was introduced to hMailServer, i've never looked back. it's really nice for it's weight. part of the requirements for it to run is a database server, either MySQL or Microsoft SQL Server ™. when setting up the server, you're allowed to choose whether or not you want to use an external MySQL database server. not using an external database server makes use of the one that comes bundled with the hMailServer package.

with MySQL versions up to 3.x, i worked well with hMailServer. unfortunately, from version 4 upwards, i've struggled with using hMailServer and MySQL. that's because i generally install MySQL for purposes other than running a mail server. however, the last time i installed hMailServer, i did the usual thing: create a new database for the mail server's use using my existing MySQL server installation. however, for some reason, hMailServer choked on the external database, so i was left with the option of downgrading hMailServer or MySQL. for the first time, i got mad, reinstalled hMailServer and let it use its internal MySQL server. it's nice to know that even though i now have two MySQL server services running on my computer, i can use my existing MySQL server along the one installed with hMailServer.

one thing of note, if you're going to install hMailServer, please note that the username used to authenticate to the mail server must be the full email address, not just the username portion, that is, it needs to be '', not just 'username'. this is something that i've seen trip up new users of hMailServer.

Monday, December 11, 2006

i was taught wrong proportions

Back in primary school(i guess that would be grade school for some people), i was taught that if 1 man completes a piece of work in 10 days, 10 men would complete the same piece of work in 1 day. i have since come to question the validity of that premise, because if we consider the men actually completing the work in 1 day:
  • as Prof Olicks mentioned, we're assuming that they all work at the same time, and they don't have to queue up the work - in other words, no person's work is dependent on any other person's
  • we're assuming there are no slackers among them, which is most likely not true. come on, any group of 10 people will almost certainly have one or more slackers.
  • we're assuming each of the 10 men has exactly the same rate of work as the 1 man - which is of course, not plausible.
  • we're assuming the men don't do anything to affect their work rate, either positively (like cheering each other on or smoking weed) or negatively (like...i dunno!).
  • we're assuming they even begin to cooperate.
  • we're assuming they don't get into each other's way, which will obviously slow down the rate of work.
  • we're assuming they don't go off, form a union and call a strike for some reason.
  • we're assuming having 10 men on the site isn't a violation of safety laws.
  • as Prof Biyi reminded me before i publish this, it also depends on the nature of the work. if it takes 1 man 1 minute to put on a pair of trousers, how long will it take 10 men to put on the same pair of trousers? i think that bears thinking about.
  • from Prof Biyi's postulation, we can also assume that we have not asked the employer of labour if he would be willing to pay 10 men as against 1, since the 1 has the (decided) advantage of not being able to form a union (of course, that doesn't stop him from getting a shotgun...).
  • since we learnt this before we found out about the law of diminishing returns, we can safely assume that we are assuming without the said law, which IMHO, has a bad habit of not knowing how to be ignored gracefully.
  • we're assuming that some other thing i haven't taken into consideration does (not) happen.
in my opinion, the smart answer to the question: "if 1 man takes 10 days to complete a piece of work, how long will it take 10 men to complete the same piece of work?" would be: "it depends".

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

New virus/worm/whatever!

last night (or in the early hours of this morning), someone asked me to take a look at his WinXP computer. he said it was giving some weird text on right click. sure enough, when i right clicked his C: drive, the first two items were in some gibberish, the kind you only see when you don't have Asian fonts installed. However, the first two menu items (&Open and E&xplore), have their accesskeys underlined, like normal. i first started checking the registry to see if there was any custom autorun handler. there didn't seem to be. the thought was then brought to my mind the autorun.inf trick. so i checked, and there were a number of files named autorun* (that is, files that had the name autorun-something. apparently, the worm spreads via removable drives, and executes itelf using Windows Scripting Host. i'm not sure exactly what the payload (the actual damage caused by it other than being annoying) at any rate, disabling Windows Script Host is very easy if you have the right tools, or if you don't mind running around in the registry. i can't tell you exacty what registry key to modify other than HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows Script Host\Settings\ (set both the Enabled and Remote values to 0). use Task Manager or any other process manager to kill any instances of Windows Script Host (wscript.exe) running, otherwise, cleaning the worm will be really difficult. Next, make sure that the worm doesn't start up with the system by searching for and deleting all intances of "autorun.bat" in the HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\IniFileMapping\system.ini key. Finally, at the console, run: attrib -h -s -r autorun* and delete the files that appear if you have the default setting, which is to hide system and hidden files. if this doesn't make sense, post a comment. i'm falling asleep at my computer and i don't want it to drop off my lap. later then! oh, yeah - tools you can easily use to disable Windows Scripting include the excellent Xpy and AVG Antispyware. With Xpy, simply download, unzip and run the application. you'll see it under the 'General' settings. For AVG Antispyware, go to the Tools tab and expand Other services (or something like that; i don't have it installed for a number of reasons).

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

English is the pits!

i'm taking a couple of tests on Brainbench (free of course! :D), among which is the Personality test. i was looking at the text at the top of the screen and started wondering of "today" referred to "this present day", or "an amount of time around and including the present day". there are too many words with multiple languages in English! since the world generally agrees that i'm not a native English speaker, i'll have to say we chose a really weird language for the most popular one (quoting Ryuk from Death Note episode #1)

Wings 3D 0.98.36 is out!

i once again decided to creep around the Subdivision Modeling forums, ostensibly to revive my almost-dead modeling career. there, i was greeted with the wonderful news that Wings3D 0.98.36 is out! okay, so i haven't tested it, but if my experience with the previous versions is anything to go by, it's going to be l33t! oooooh, i can hardly wait to get my hands on a shiny new copy! erm, forgive my behaviour - everyone is allowed 5 minutes of insanity daily. i was just getting warmed up :D. later then!