Thursday 28 August 2014, 18:59
I don't think I have officially mentioned this here on my Web log yet,
but here it is: I am moving to Denmark to work as a postdoc in the
Scaleable Similarity Search project at the IT University of Copenhagen.
This is a one-year temporary position with a possible renewal for a second
As I type this, I am in my apartment in Winnipeg, sitting on top of my
modular synthesizer in its Pelican case because that is the closest thing to
furniture that hasn't been taken away by either the movers or Goodwill.
Sunday 17 August 2014, 16:26
I have just posted Tsukurimashou
0.9, the latest version of my Japanese-language font project.
After almost a year in development since the last version, this one contains
1754 kanji, including all through Grade Four and 100 from Grade Five (a
little more than half of the 185 assigned to that grade). This version also
includes extensive infrastructure changes, most notably a bundled
interpreter for the FontForge native scripting language, intended to provide
insurance of future support as mainline FontForge moves further and further
away from that language.
The future of Tsukurimashou development may be tangled, as my commitments
and priorities change with my upcoming move to Denmark. This 0.9 release was
produced in a bit of a rush to get something out the door before I pack up
my computer for shipment. I don't know when I will next get a change to
work on it more, but that will be at least two months from now. You can do
your bit to support continued work on Tsukurimashou by building it, using
it, and above all by writing about it. What the project needs most of all
Sunday 20 July 2014, 20:20
The Apollo moon landings were fake.
I don't mean that they did not occur - it was before I was born, but it
seems clear that men did at one time walk on the Moon. There are too many
independent confirmations of that for it to be in any reasonable doubt.
However, the Apollo Moon landings occurred under false pretences. The
story told about the factual events, both at the time and now, was and is a
dishonest story, carefully constructed to further the goals of the US
government and certain other powerful forces.
Sunday 20 April 2014, 16:52
In my last posting I
described getting Slackware ARM to boot headless on the ODROID U3
single-board computer, and I said that the next step would be to try to make
it handle ungraceful shutdown (power loss) better. I plan to put this board
into a Eurorack synthesizer module with no easy access to the microHDMI monitor
connection, and SSH over the Ethernet connection as the only access to
administrative functions. If, when the power is pulled on it, it comes up
on next boot in a state where it requires console interaction to do a step
like checking the filesystem before it will accept SSH connections, that is
a disaster; I'd have to disassemble the whole module to extract the
microSDMI card and replace the OS image. To be useful, the ODROID
must be guaranteed or almost guaranteed to survive a power drop
and come up SSH-able on the next boot. Ideally, I want pulling the plug
on it with no shutdown formalities to be the normal expected way of shutting
it down too, not just an error condition from which it can recover. A good
journalling filesystem can increase the chance of recovery from occasional
accidental power drops, but I think the only way to make routine
non-accidental power drops safe is to keep the filesystem mounted read-only
- which might be desirable anyway, to reduce wear on the flash memory
and prevent its being corrupted by other kinds of accidents. So this
posting is about my experiences configuring Slackware ARM on the ODROID U3
to keep its root filesystem read-only.
Sunday 13 April 2014, 18:20
Our last episode
concluded with the discovery that the clip leads I was using to power the
ODROID U3 had nontrivial resistance, possibly close to two Ohms for the pair.
That's a lot, when one is pulling up to 2A through them from a 5V supply.
I switched them for some lower-resistance ones, and the ODROID seemed to
behave much better. Between that and a replacement of the
Hardkernel-supplied microSD card, I was hopeful that the reliability
problems would be much reduced and I could make some
progress on the software side of things.
Wednesday 9 April 2014, 20:39
As of last update, I had
given up on setting up the ODROID U3 without connecting a monitor to it, and
was shopping for a micro-HDMI cable. Here are some further notes
Sunday 6 April 2014, 20:09
I recently bought a Hardkernel
ODROID U3 single-board computer to use in one of my projects. The
ODROID U3 is an ARM-based computer capable of running Linux or Android, with
Ethernet, USB, microSD, and some other ports that I wasn't planning to use.
My plan is to use it for controlling a music synthesizer, with the USB ports
used to interface to the synth and a little LCD panel, and the Ethernet port
used to talk to other computers. This posting contains some notes on
getting it to work.
Wednesday 5 March 2014, 08:25
FontAnvil is a script language interpreter for manipulating fonts.
FontAnvil is substantially compatible with the PfaEdit/FontForge native
scripting language, but FontAnvil is intended for non-interactive use; for
instance, invocation from the build systems of font packages like
Tsukurimashou. To better serve font package build systems in general and
Tsukurimashou in particular, FontAnvil has no GUI and, to a reasonable
extent, avoids dependencies on external packages.
Visit the FontAnvil home page.
Monday 10 February 2014, 08:39
The text below pretty much speaks for itself. Bold highlighting and
numbered footnotes in [square brackets] are mine; all the rest is as I
received it. Some irregularities of spacing and punctuation, visible in the
original email, aren't obvious in the HTML. Names of the students are
redacted because (after finding several more copies on the Web) I imagine
the students are relatively innocent victims of bad advice. Name of the
institution not redacted because I hope others who receive such letters and
look for them on the Web will be able to easily find this posting.
Friday 13 December 2013, 13:09