take a break

Merry Christmas

Season's greetings to every one out there. I hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday season and that everyone can take the time to enjoy with their family and friends.

I am actually writing this on the 24th and having it post automatically tomorrow morning. Today I go to my parent's house for Christmas Eve dinner and then we go to m's parent's for Christmas day.

Since I don't have to work next week I plan on doing some PHP experimenting as well as a little more work on Race Analyzer. For right now though I just have to do the rushing around for the holidays and then spend the next couple of days relaxing with family and friends. Anyway, look for some activity here next week.
category: General posted on Saturday December 25, 2004 at 07:00:00 by: 0xCC

Strange

I don't know when it happened but something with the content management system that I am using to run this site screwed up and was preventing the site from being viewed. I just changed a variable in the PHP that runs the site and things are back up now. I am a little bit worried about this because I don't really understand what happened. I guess I should do a little bit more reading of that PHP book that I just got. Next week will be a good time to get caught up on all that stuff and to do some stuff around the house and do some house cleaning around here and with Race Analyzer.

Anyway, if you visited lately and ran into a problem as you can see I have put a band-aid on the problem and will look into it in more detail next week.
category: General posted on Wednesday December 22, 2004 at 10:04:11 by: 0xCC

Still here...

Yes, I am still here.

I have been trying to figure out how to do what I have in mind for Race Analyzer. The concept is pretty simple. I want to have columns across the top of the area where I display the file the user has opened. These columns need to be re-sizeable so the user can click and drag the width of them as they wish, similar to the "Date", "Subject" and "Author" columns in Outlook or Thunderbird. When the user drags these columns a character should be added or removed from the column they are re-sizing and removed or added to the adjacent column. The ultimate goal is to have a number of columns of varying widths that when the user wants to save to a comma separated value (CSV) file that can be imported into Excel (or another spreadsheet) the app will just look at the widths of the columns and insert a comma at the end of each column. Repeat this for every line in the file and bingo; a file with race results has been turned into a CSV file ready for analysis in a spreadsheet. That is the plan anyway. I am not sure how to get there yet.

In other news, I made a slightly big purchase today. As I posted here my TV gave up the ghost earlier this week. I knew it was coming. The TV had been showing signs of failing for a number of weeks (crackling noises coming through the speakers just after turning off the set, sparkles on the screen and pops coming through the speakers when just watching TV) so I had started to look around at features in new TVs and I started to think about what I would like in a new TV. After much debate I decided to go with the Panasonic CT-30WX54 (that's funny, I didn't actually notice the WX as in wxPython in the model until just now). It comes tomorrow. You would think after going for almost a week without TV I would have had made more progress on Race Analyzer. Unfortunately some other things prevented me from really working on Race Analyzer and when I had the time to do it I ended up doing more PHP and MySQL reading (the Origins DVD and the book came the day before the TV went out so I haven't even been able to watch the DVD yet).

Anyway, I am trying to figure out how to do these column tricks that I want to do in wxPython (or even Win32/MFC so I can at least do it and then port to wxPython).
category: Development posted on Saturday December 11, 2004 at 22:24:58 by: 0xCC

Distractions

This is a normal thing for me. I am getting distracted from Race Analyzer development. I haven't really spent too much time on it so far so I guess I don't have a whole lot invested in it. However, I am losing my focus on it. So what is at the root of my waning interest? I don't quite know. Is that I run into a problem that I don't think I can solve? Sometimes. Is it because I start to find the development boring? Maybe. Is it because I don't think I am learning something or I don't find it a challenge any more? I don't know.

Every time I work on it I do learn something. I either learn something about Python or I learn something about wxPython. Learning is good and I do enjoy figuring things out, like the error that I was getting when Python choked on a non-ASCII character in the file I was using as a test. So now I am at the stage where I have to go a little bit beyond what I actually know and can solve with little thought. I don't even know the name of the control I want to use now. So there is some 'boring' research that I have to do in order to figure out what it is that I want to do and if what I want to do is actually as easy as I think it should be. So maybe that it is. Or maybe I have found something new and exciting to look into and I am getting drawn into that.

What could be new and exciting enough to draw me away from Race Analyzer and Python and wxPython? PHP, Apache and MySQL.

In my training blog I started to talk about planning and the beginning of my annual training plan. When I started to think about the training plan I also started to think about the training log. I was thinking that I would like to make it a little bit easier to enter things into my training log (and it would be a good research exercise for the next application I plan on making and eventually selling). So since the content management system I am using for this site (NucleusCMS) is written in PHP I thought I should learn PHP. I happened to be in a Chapters a couple of weeks ago and I found a book that talked about PHP, Apache and MySQL. It just happens that this site is using all three of those technologies and I would like to have a better understanding of how this CMS actually works.

So I have ordered a book which should get to me in a couple of weeks, I coupled the book with a DVD (Nova: Origins, an excellent series on the formation of the solar system and the earth) in order to get free shipping. The DVD isn't released until December 7 so I have to wait for the whole order to ship. My plan is to take some of the time over the Christmas holidays to see if I can tweak the CMS system I am using to make adding entries to my training blog a little easier and a little more informative.

Anyway, for now that is my distraction. I am going to do some research on the next step for Race Analyzer now. Maybe I will have an update on that tomorrow.
category: Development posted on Thursday December 02, 2004 at 19:38:09 by: 0xCC

Stocks

I wasn't sure whether I should post something about this or not. I started out this post wanting to talk about a specific stock that I had recently purchaced and that I was feeling a little bit uneasy about. Not uneasy enough to lose sleep but uneasy none the less. Since I haven't posted anything about this topic yet I want to give a little bit of background. So I will be splitting this post into two posts, one that gives the background on how I got to where I am with investing and one that talks specifically about that stock I was (am) uneasy about. There's more...
category: Finance posted on Thursday December 02, 2004 at 18:53:10 by: 0xCC