What do you call open source software that just works?

by @edent | , , | 6 comments | Read ~241 times.

Binary code displayed on a screen.

The fashion industry has the concept of "prêt-à-porter" - ready to wear. You pick a thing off the rack and off you go. No tailoring needed. Similarly, the food industry has "prêt-à-manger" - ready to eat. No telling l'artiste du pain how much mayo you want, just grab a boxed sandwich and start munching. What's…

Creating a public, read-only calendar

by @edent | , , | 5 comments | Read ~238 times.

A bright and easy to use weekly view of my diary.

Last year, I blogged about why I make my work calendar public. It is useful to have a public website where people can see if I'm free or busy. But the version I created relied on Google Calendar which, sadly, isn't that great. It doesn't look wonderful, especially on small screens, and is limited to…

Sometimes a bad patch is better than no patch

by @edent | , | 1 comment | Read ~173 times.

A screenshot showing the difference between two text files.

Cunningham's Law states "the best way to get the right answer on the internet is not to ask a question; it's to post the wrong answer." Edent's 7th Law (My blog; my rules!) states "the best way to get an open source project to fix an issue is to send a slightly wrong Pull Request."…

Introducing - On This Day in Twistory

by @edent | , , | 3 comments | Read ~301 times.

A list of columns with Tweets in them.

One of the things I loved about Facebook was its "On This Day" feature. There's something delightful about seeing what nonsense you were talking about on this day a decade ago. Twitter doesn't have anything like that. So I built it. Introducing - Twistory.ml Stick your @ name in, hit the big button, and you'll…

Please Stop Inventing New Software Licences

by @edent | , | 2 comments | Read ~264 times.

Binary code displayed on a screen.

A few weeks ago, I received an unsolicited email inviting me to try out an exciting new "quantum resistant" cryptography app called Cyph. Because I hate myself, I signed up. Of particular interest to me was the fact that the homepage loudly proclaimed that it was "Open Source" - and had a public GitHub repo.…

Do any Open Source Licences require source history?

by @edent | , , | 10 comments | Read ~2,158 times.

Binary code displayed on a screen.

A question to the void. Are you entitled to get the source history of open source projects? Lots of Open Source licences give the consumer of software the right to a copy of the source code. For example, GPLv3 says that distributors of software have to: give anyone who possesses the object code ... a…

Howto: Disable image pop-ups in WordPress comments

by @edent | , , ,

An mshots popup obscuring the screen.

If you have the Akismet spam plugin for WordPress, you'll be familiar with this problem. When your mouse pointer goes over any URL, you get a large website preview taking over parts of your screen. I asked for a way to turn this off and I'm happy to say the developers listened! Sadly, there's no…

We've built a towering pile of shite

by @edent | , | 21 comments | Read ~17,098 times.

A pet cat typing on a computer keyboard.

This a rant, written at midnight, after battling software errors. Set your profanity filters accordingly. I despair over the state of software engineering - specifically, stability. We seem to have lost the understanding that computers are there to do the hard work for us. And I don't think we ever believed in a user-centred approach…

There's nothing I hate more than text config files

by @edent | , , | 8 comments | Read ~508 times.

A GUI for creating webhooks.

I'm going to revisit an argument I had in… Ooooh… 2001ish? I wanted to make some edits to my university's fledging student union website. In order to do this, I needed to learn the arcane art of SSH. This was one of my first introductions to text based config files. I was horrified! A single…