May 2017

I only started writing this update on the 28th April, so it might be a little shorter than usual.

Birthday

May 4th was my birthday, which I learned a few years ago coincides with the (unofficial) Star Wars Day (”May the Fourth be with you”). I turned 24 this year. I don’t really feel twenty-four, but oh well.

Star Wars fic

New working title is: In the pale Darkness of Dawn. Casing tbc.

Due to conferencing and traveling and the effect that has on my writing as well as a very unfortunate (and frustrating) bout of flu or cold or whatever in the last week of April, I didn’t get as much writing done as I’d hoped.

I have about 6k of material written, but I do have a fairly large amount of notes and a good outline for two of the four threads in the fic. So it’s not too bad. And now that I’m nearing the final design of this fic (or have already achieved it? it’s hard to tell), it should go much faster.

The form of the fic has also evolved from more traditional prose in long sections and chapters, towards smaller single-scene sections ranging from 600 to 1500 words in length each, and then organised in semi-chronological order and grouped in chapters. It’s a particular form, and it provides interesting possibilities, like making it very easy to present the same scene from multiple point of views, almost in a side-by-side manner. It’s also much closer to my own ‘natural’ writing style.

Play By Play

I went to Play By Play! Both the festival (for two of the days) and the conference. I tweeted a bunch. Honestly, I’m not a game developer. I think it’s something I might want to do later on?

Mostly, I went because I wanted to do something different, it sounded like a cool event, and I knew there would be some great talks at least. (There were!)

So soon after NZ.js(con), it might have been too much city and crowd at once, though. I was mostly fine during the festival days, which I spent sometimes at the expo space and a lot walking around Wellington (eating stuff and drinking coffee and climbing up Mt Victoria like I try to do everytime I go to Welly), but on the day of the con… I think I blanked out for most of the morning shuffle, at least until talks started really going. And after the con, I was definitely frazzled; I was so out of it and wanting away that I walked in completely the wrong direction for a good kilometre before I realised!

So, I won’t be going down to cities and crowdy events for a little bit.

I did get a nice haircut out of it, though.

Cargo Watch

I released Cargo Watch v5.0.0. It’s bittersweet because it’s kinda giving up on the original project that made Notify a reality, but I eventually realised that I really had no interest in implementing and maintaining the intricacies of process groups and restarting servers on three different platforms, and that Cargo Watch is a cargo tool.

So now we embed watchexec, which does all the stuff I don’t want to do way better than I would ever have done, and leaves me to crafting a cargo-focused experienced, with cargo-specific features, and geared precisely at development workloads and use cases. It feels like a breath of fresh air.

Docker on BSD

I briefly attempted to get Docker running on FreeBSD (the native implementation) in the view of running Kubernetes on FreeBSD on Digital Ocean, but quickly got disabused of that notion when I tried running trivial containers and got fatal and critical errors straight out of the gate. So much for that idea.

Catflap

A small single-purpose development tool for server reloading. Initially from a feature request on Cargo Watch, I wrote it instead as a separate tool for Linux/Mac/Unix. The name Catflap is both because it’s a small door that you install so that you don’t have to constantly open and close and open and close a door, and as a play on the netcat tool.

I was initially skeptical of the benefits, but testing it convinced me!