Links of the Week: July 15th

Yeah, so I lied. Thursday didn’t happen. Friday didn’t happen. Hopefully today will. I’ve been pretty busy working on a few other things (Will knows) and will be unveiling a new layout either later tonight or tomorrow. I’m also planning on cleaning it up and releasing it as a free WordPress theme. If I get a few creative streaks, I might even make a few extra themes here and there.

Following along with a LotW layout I did about two weeks ago, I’m just going to write random rubbish about some of the things I stumbled upon in the last four or five days.


Google’s progress on Unladen Swallow is moving ahead nicely.

Digging through my bookmarks, I came across this gem related to JavaScript arrays. If you’ve ever wanted to know how to create associative arrays (although they’re not technically associative arrays) in JS, look no further. It’s also a great reference if you happened to forget the exact syntax after playing around with a few other languages in the interim.

Khaled alHabache has an insightful write-up on Scala. I’ve been eyeing the language off for a couple of months now, but I think he’s convinced me to give it a try. It seems appealing.

Adrian Pelletier has an article that explains how to create a realistic hover effect using jQuery. I’m not sure what utility this would have for most sites, but I imagine flashy media sites that refuse to use Adobe Flash might find a use. (Note: This is a good example of JavaScript supplanting Flash in some cases; using Flash for menus and simple animations? Ridiculous.)


Did you know that simple and fairly common household items can make your old plastic hardware look new again? Surprised me, too!


Speaking of hardware, I’ve finally decided to replace my ages old SoundBlaster Live! with this puppy. It should be coming in tomorrow afternoon sometime. I’ll take some pictures and write up a brief review.

Well, that’ll be it for now. I need to do some work on a new template!

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Python Gotchas: Class Attributes versus Instance Members

Links of the Week will be delayed until tomorrow or Friday.

Today, I’d like to share with you a real treat. It happened well into the evening last night when my coherent thought processes were lost in a semi-drunken stupor induced by lack of sleep (I don’t drink, but I do have slight insomnia sometimes). What was most ironic is that in the five or so years of writing in Python (off and on) I have never encountered this particular problem.

Click that fancy link (below) to read more. This is a fairly lengthy article, so make sure you have some free time! Read more…

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Migrating Eclipse Workbench from Windows to Linux

Some folks like to have a relationship among the development tools they use regardless of the underlying operating system. I would certainly qualify as one such individual, because I honestly don’t believe that the operating system should adversely impact the development environment of choice. Of course, there are specific exceptions to the rule: .NET development is a little painful in Mono Develop, and most people writing .NET applications are very likely going to be working under Visual Studio.

My desire to maintain such similarity first started with ActiveState’s Komodo which I once used for PHP and Python development. It amused me to no end that I could purchase one license and use the same IDE under Windows and Linux with virtually no difference in environment. (There was a bug with the color picker under X windows when it came to syntax highlighting and other preferences, but there was a really cheesy solution. More on that in a moment.) The best part, too, was that I could copy my configurations from Windows over to my .komodo directory, change the file and directory paths in one or two XML configs, and it’d work just like it did in Windows. Remember that little bug I mentioned in the parenthetical about colors? By setting your color preferences under Windows and copying the configurations over it was possible to work around such limitations. It was a kludge but it worked.

Eclipse is a whole ‘nother animal. Although it’s slightly more well-behaved with Galileo (Eclipse 3.5), it’s nearly impossible to copy a workspace from Windows to Linux and expect anything to work. However, if you’d like to maintain your open projects and files, I have just the solution. Some fair warning is in order: This little tip does take some effort to complete, and I’d highly recommend having access to Python (Ruby would work just as well). Unless you know a great deal more about Eclipse internals than I do, the extra effort of guessing data types isn’t really worth it. Read more…

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