Back / De vuelta

Ok, after more than 6 years of silence, here we are with a new entry in the blog!

Lots of things during this time: a couple of sons, a new job, I recently started my 40’s… but life continues. Even Tom Waits played in Barcelona and I was there!

Anyway, I hope I could update the blog more often now…


¡Tras más de 6 años sin actualizar el blog, aquí estamos de vuelta!

Muchas cosas han cambiado, o más que cambiar, la vida ha seguido transcurriendo: un hijo, cambio de trabajo, otro hijo, los 40… Incluso pude acudir a un concierto de Tom Waits en Barcelona!

Bueno, comenzamos esta nueva temporada con buenas intenciones, entre ellas actualizar ésto de vez en cuando…

New Katxi web site oficially released

As I mentioned in last entry, during December I rewrote Katxijasotzaileak web page . This week I did last tests and changed the redirections, so the new web is officially released to the public now.

Old one was written using Zope application server v2.6.2 and used MySQL for permanent storage. Not bad, it has served for 2 or 3 years; but times are changing, you know, and web applications development uses other technologies nowdays… I’ve used CherryPy, SQLObject, SQLite and Cheetah templating system (see here for complete description of all tools involved). CherryPy app is served with a wsgi launcher run by lighttpd mod_scgi module.

It has been a great pleasure to use the combination of these powerful but simple tools, it has done the development easy and really fast. As a plus, and as this web site has just a few hits per day, I don’t need to have running some weighted processes like a big db or a complex application server (zope used ~90 MB and MySQL ~110 MB of virtual memory, now the wsgi app no more than 35 MB. You note the difference).

And btw, for nostalgic people, there is a place where you can find some presents…

Bye Apache, Hello Lighttpd

Along this week I’ve been reading the documentation of lighttpd, a light and fast web server.

Encouraged by its simplicity I installed and replicated my apache configuration (4 virtual hosts, some complex rewrite rules for a zope site…) in two non complete days. And I liked it, it is light and fast as they stated, but it’s really simple too. After two more days testing some things, mainly SSI and python CGIs, I took the decision to substitute the good ol’ apache with lighttpd.

Today I’ve done it and except a few minor issues regarding non complete support for SSI’s exec and the replacement of several .htaccess with lighttpd’s own method of authentication, it has been straightforward. Not much scientific measurements show virtual memory comsumption has lowered from ~27 MB to ~3 MB, and some large pages loading time improve ~33%.

Also, as far as I finish the new Katxi web site I’ll be able to get rid of zope and MySQL too, replaced by CherryPy and sqlite. Not that I don’t like them, they are great, but perhaps too cumbersome for my needs, not so complex personal webs. But as this will be announced soon, I won’t add more now.

By the way, I’ve also slightly changed site, replacing old-style tables with more modern CSS techniques.

Alive and new programs announced

Much time since I last blogged…

Anyway, today I released Pynahotheka, a python script which generates nice static HTML photo albums in which I’ve been working last 2 months. It’s written with Python, PIL and CheetahTemplate.

I’ve created my friends and my own photo galleries with this tool. Also I’m really proud that some friends uses it to build their own galleries.

I haven’t mention MyNewspaper either, a personal RSS aggregator and reader with a Web UI. This is a project I started this summer, but was halted due to pynakotheka development. I use it every day and it’s quite good!!! It’s written in Python and uses CheetahTemplate and Sqlite/SQLObject.

I’m very happy with both programs’ code… don’t know, maybe I’m learning to program ;-)

From now on, I’m considering different projects:

  • a total rewrite of Katxijasotzaileak web , changing Zope2 with CherryPy and MySql with Sqlite and SQLObject and designing a new more modern look
  • rewrite tintytw, a tripwire-like file system integrity monitor I wrote some years ago
  • and contine improving MyNewspaper, of course

New gdesklets: boxmail

One of the oldest projects in my TODO list was to rewrite a desklet I coded some time ago.

I’ve been considering the idea for many months - maybe too much - but with the latest improvements in gDesklets (Controls, Side Candy, etc) I run out of excuses, so this afternoon I’ve taken a look at SideCandyPopmail and adapted to my old code.

This is how it looks like:


The desklet shows the number of unread/total messages in an Unix mailbox, the size of the mailbox file and the subject of last 4 received emails. Its beauty comes from the SideCandy style.

You can download it from here.