Whenever I have to start working with a new software package to do a task I already know how to perform using a different software package, I feel a little frustrated. I’m sure everyone can relate to this. Programs that do similar things are often unnecessarily differentiated. It’s as if DeWalt and Makita made cordlessContinue reading “I Hate Your Favorite VCS”

# Author Archives: pirateguillermo

## Hey, I Built a Thing

My new job involves hacking on Bugzilla and part of that involves email. Bug email, system administration email, yadda yadda. I wanted a way to test that email without it ever leaving my development system. We had a mechanism in place where the emails would just get written to a plain file, but that doesn’tContinue reading “Hey, I Built a Thing”

## Always Ask One More Question

Badb just asked me if I could show her how to calculate the square root of a number. I cast my mind back to 7th grade and tried to remember going up to the blackboard and calculating arbitrary square roots. “Um, yeah, but let me go look it up. It’s been a long time andContinue reading “Always Ask One More Question”

## Time Out for SQL

Basic SQL is pretty simple, really. It’s only when I start dealing with big joins and group functions that I start to lose track of what exactly is going on. I’m in that situation now, so I’m constructing a small data set with short table and column names so I don’t have to type asContinue reading “Time Out for SQL”

## Factorize, More Boxes

Boxes and arrows, I know, it doesn’t look like a program yet. Still, it all is going somewhere, I promise. Let’s take a minute and talk about how factorization works. It’s pretty straightforward: either a number is evenly divisible by some other number (a factor) or it isn’t. Let’s look at an example: 48. WhatContinue reading “Factorize, More Boxes”

## Why You Gotta Hate?

For the past three weeks I’ve been working on a Bugzilla system. Specifically, working on fixing small bugs in the UI code of a customized Bugzilla installation. This system has been highly customized, with lots of new Javascript as well as a lot of server-side extensions to customize the process of bug entry and workflow.Continue reading “Why You Gotta Hate?”

## Factorization: Some Drawings

So here’s the very high level flowchart for the factorization program. The key insight here is that the things the program does are grouped together and put inside pretty inclusive boxes. The lower-level flowcharts will start to unpack these boxes. The really interesting thing about this is that for any box we don’t really knowContinue reading “Factorization: Some Drawings”

## Programming Assignment: Prime Factorization

Last night the Badb had to find the prime factorization of a number. Thrill moment! This is exactly the problem I once wrote a computer program to solve and wound up entering that program in the school science fair. That was pretty cool. Back when I had to solve this problem, my computer had aContinue reading “Programming Assignment: Prime Factorization”

## My New Commute

Highway 85 is, unless you’re a carpool, unusable during commute hours. I’ve been trying different ways to get to NASA for the past week and so far the best I’ve been able to come up with is 70 minutes. Without freeways, there are basically two routes: mountains north and a short run east across PaloContinue reading “My New Commute”

## Bagpipe Tuning

There are several pages out there that go into great detail about tuning the Great Highland Bagpipes. The real trick, for me, is making sure that the chanter is in tune. I am not blessed with perfect pitch and it can be difficult to do this by ear. On top of that, my instructor doesn’tContinue reading “Bagpipe Tuning”