Latest Nightly Eclipse Re-Adds Editor Linkage

The latest build of Eclipse has re-added a feature that I had been missing since the M4 or so. This feature is a linking of location between the Package view and the current editor. You’ve always been able to double-click on a class in the package explorer and have it bring that class up in the editor. What you used to be able to do, and what you can do again, is to have the package view updated based on your location. So if I’m editing Foo and then I click on the tab for Bar, the package view will now show that I’m in Bar. This is now a toggle instead of being foisted upon those who don’t like it. If you install this latest version (remember to do it like this) you’ll now see a little icon on the top of the package explorer that looks like this

Toggle Switch

I’m really glad this is back because I missed it. But I’m also glad that there’s a toggle switch because there were times that this behavior was a real pain.

New Comments System

I’ve finally gotten Movable Type’s Standalone TrackBack system installed and working. As you can see each story now has a “0 Comments” or “1 Comment”, etc link at its end. Clicking on this will not only show comments left by other visitors, but it will allow you to leave comments for all the world (well, at least that small part of it that reads my blog) to see. It’s sort of like the old graffiti walls on BBSs.

I don’t claim to fully understand the intricacies of Trackback (as opposed to a regular old comment system), but it seems to work and that makes me happy.

Give it a try if you’re itching to say something. Just be nice. Or at least polite.

My Blosxom 2.0 Google Plugin

I’m releasing a preview version of my Google plugin for Blosxom 2.0. We’ve all seen blog entries with a little “G” or “Google” that when clicked execute a search at Google for something related to the blog topic. I’ve seen those that strictly took the article title and used all those words in the query, but I wanted more control. So in my plugin I inspect the first line of the blog entry body, and if it starts with “KW:” (user-configurable) then the rest of that line is taken as keywords. These keywords are joined with “+” signs and tacked onto a configurable Google search query URL. For example, if the first line of the body (obviously after the title) looked like this:

 	KW: fox news channel 

then the resulting URL (assuming no config changes) would look like this 

and would show up in the story as “| Google”.

The look of the link is also user-configurable. You can see from all of my entries that I use a pipe, then the word “Google” but you can use whatever you want. In order to get the link, just include $google::google in your story.html and that’s it.

There’s also a setting that will make the link open in a new window or not.

What license are people using for this type of stuff? I read through the Blosxom license but I couldn’t tell if it was one of the “well known” licenses or not. I think I lean towards LGPL, but the alphabet soup of licenses is somewhat hard to get through. Do I even need to license this?

This is a 0.1 release with very little in the way of docs other than this entry and the sparse comments in the code. Get it here

If you use this plugin, please let me know. If you have suggestions/comments/complaints send me an email.


Thanks to the rapid suggestions of Todd Larason I’ve made some changes to the plugin to make it better. Here’s what I did:

The new version is available here and the old version from here just in case I messed something up!

Again, please let me know of anything else!

New Version of Blosxom

Ooo yah! I checked my email this morning and see that Rael has dropped a new version of Blosxom. It’s 2.0 beta1 and it sports a new plugin architecture and other nifty features. I’ve gotten it setup on my local box and have ported some code I’d written against the 0+5i release to the new plugin format. I’ll be getting this site up with the new version later today I suspect.

Eclipse M5 Painless Upgrade

Man, I love Eclipse more and more every day. I’ve been using it for almost a year and it just keeps getting better. The fabulous Eclipse team released Eclipse 2.1 M5 a couple of hours ago and I fetched it shortly thereafter. Wanna know how the install went?

  1. I shut down the instance I had running
  2. Squirreled away trusty M4 version for safe-keeping
  3. Unzipped the M5 distro
  4. Copied my workspace folder from M4 to M5
  5. Copied my plugins over from M4
  6. Fired up the new version

Why can’t all installs be that easy?

If you are an Eclipse user, think about getting this version. There are quite a few tasty new features lurking about in there.

Irrational Pro-Piracy “Argument”

It’s really funny when someone knows something that he is doing is morally or ethically wrong but tries to explain it away as not really so bad. Case in point: on /. there is a thread about the BSA sending threatening letters to companies telling them to do a “self audit” of their software to make sure they are totally legal. One genius responded thusly

yeah but… so they “pirated” software. here is the result:

one, it doesn’t cost the software companies a thing. you steal a car, it takes steel, rubber, plastic from somewhere. you make a DIGITAL copy, it costs software co. nothing. and many of the “pirates” wouldn’t have bought the software.

Yep, it doesn’t “cost” the software companies anything. That’s a good one. Just like stealing cable or satellite service doesn’t “cost” those companies anything. His last sentence is the kicker, though. “[A]nd many of the ‘pirates’ wouldn’t have bought the software.” So, by this guy’s “logic” if you wouldn’t have bought a product anyway, but you still want to use it, it should be ok for you to just take it? Give me a break. It sounds to me like his conscience is whispering to him and he is doing his best not to listen.

Farewell Columbia

I was heartbroken Saturday morning when I read, around 10:15AM, that the space shuttle Columbia had burned up over Texas. I was especially saddened when I heard that the family of Ilan Ramon, the first Israeli astronaut, was at Cape Canaveral waiting for his return.

President Bush addressed the nation later that morning saying “The Columbia is lost. There are no survivors.” I believe he was genuinely saddened by this event. And then in a move that I’m sure has the “no one in government should ever even think of God” crowd in a lather, he quoted the prophet Isaiah saying

Lift your eyes and look to the heavens. Who created all these? He who brings out the starry hosts one by one and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength not one of them is missing.

He then continued

The same creator who names the stars also knows the names of the seven souls we mourn today. The crew of the shuttle Columbia did not return safely to Earth, yet we can pray that all are safely home.

There is a growing page of editorial cartoons paying tribute to Columbia here that are really good.

My minister ends each Sunday morning service with these words “whether we live in the Lord or die in the Lord, we are the Lord’s.” I believe that. And I also believe that those seven brave souls who died Saturday morning have most certainly gone home.