monday at oscon

It’s about quarter after ten, here, and I’m really ready to fall asleep. Maybe it’s that I got up at 0530 local time, or maybe it’s that my body is still on Eastern time, where it’s now 0115, well past my bedtime. Either way, I’m really tired.

My notes for the talks I go to will be published in my OSCON directory, but my thoughts follow below.

I woke up really early this morning. The clock said it was five something in the morning, and I wasn’t quite sure I could fall asleep again. Then, just as I thought I might, my two-way chirped. Work was calling to ask whether I was in the building; a former employee had stopped by to return some things I’d lent. I lay in bed a bit longer, but then got up and went downstairs to check my mail and wake up a bit more. I had a decent muffin and some lousy cranberry juice cocktail and met Jeff McA, who on seeing me said, “Ah, someone else on east coast time.”

I had a conference call with Bethlehem and Cardiff at 0800 local time, which went better than I expected, I think. I was mainly concerned with finding out whether my current plan of attack would be acceptable to some of the users, only to realize that it resembles their current system in some important ways. The US representative couldn’t make it, but with the understanding I got I think I will be able to get him on board. I should phrase that differently, I suppose: I don’t want to sell him, I want to find out that the current idea is a good one, because it will mean I can get down to brass tacks.

I rushed from the call to my first tutorial: Best Practices in Perl. It was basically “Damian’s Style Guide.” A lot of the content was just good suggestions for style guide content, starting with the important “it doesn’t matter what you choose, but you must choose something.” I did a little collaborating on note-taking with SubEthaEdit. It’s just perfect for that task, although I still want Vim. I also like taking my own notes, because I know just waht I mean. If I could have several threads running in my brain to control several edit points in my Vim buffer… well, that would be ideal.

Damian briefly mentioned Module::Starter, saying that he hadn’t looked at it yet, but that other similar tools hadn’t met his needs. I told him that I figured M::S would—I got the impression that his needs in that area were just templating, since he implied that he just copies some template files into place.

Speaking of Module::Starter, there were some dev releases there today, removing a somewhat extraneous prereq and cleaning up the use of a old-style FILEHANDLEs in the SimpleStore and TT2 dists. I’ve gotten some good feedback today and yesterday, and maybe I’ll call it a release tomorrow. I tried talking to Ian today about KwikiStore for M::S, but I think we were both too tired to communicate clearly. It might be a good reason to look at reimplementing the current Wiki::Gateway concept.

After Best Practices, ther was lunch. I went to a nice little place called VQ, or Veritable Quandry, with Casey, Joel, Artur, James DD, Robert, and some other folks whom I can’t recall at this late hour. It was quite a nice lunch. I had a seafood stew; it was heavily curry-flavored, but I’m not sure I could describe the style beyond that. There was a lot of interesting lunchtable discussion.

The second tutorial of the day was also Damian: “Presentation Aikido.” Despite the name, it wasn’t really so much of a response to Presentation Judo. It addressed a much larger question, ranging from “how do I decide what to talk about (and whether to talk)” to “what do I do if nobody asks any questions?” I enjoyed it quite a lot, and I’m eager to put it to use. I almost want to rewrite some old presentations to use the wisdom I acquired. Almost.

As I left the basement, heading for my room, I saw Joel wave me toward the door, where a superset of the lunch crew was heading for dinner. We went to a place called August Moon, a Chinese restaurant. Additions included another James, Joshua K, Nick, Jouke, and many others. After staring out our menus, we asked the waitress to just let the chef decide what to serve us. She said, “Ok,” and shuffled off. Later, two people had plates. We kept waiting and waiting, and finally asked when more food would come. “Yes,” she said, “you want menu?” James (or was it Joshua?) noted that some cultures just don’t allow for the admission that, “I don’t understand you.” We tried to explain our desire, again, but finally just ordered a pile of random dishes and shared them. Despite the hassle in ordering, the food was really good. The sesame chicken was very sweet, and stuck to my teeth, and was great. We also had mediocre beer.

After going back to the hotel, a number of people went to a weird “SCO vs Whoever” moot court, but I really wasn’t interested. I’d thought about going to the Apple store, but I got the impression from Joshua and that it would be at least 2 hours of my time, and I wasn’t that interested. Instead, I went upstairs and sat in the lobby for a while.

Gloria and I had a lovely iChat conversation. We’d spoken a little, earlier in the day, but not for very long. I remain completely happy with my iSight. It’s just fantastic to have a face-to-face chat with Gloria while I’m away. It’s not the same as being there by any stretch, but it’s far better than text or voice alone. I definitely need to start taking the iSight cable and mount with me, though. This flexy metal firewire cable just doens’t cut it. I ended up having to hold the camera still, which is no good.

It turns out that Gloria won’t get the results of her test for “six to eight weeks.” This, I think, is total crap. Still, that’s how it is, and there isn’t much we can do about it. I think she must’ve done well, because that’s the way she does things. She was feeling pretty pessimistic, but I think that a day of reassurance from others has gotten her feeling more up about things, which is good. I’m glad other people are trying to keep her thinking positively, too. Earlier in the year I said that I was excited to see her persuing a career that she’ll really enjoy, and my excitement has not abated. To see bravery rewarded with success will be a nice little lesson for me.

I know there are other things to say, but I’m completely exhausted. I’ll just note: other people I met today include Jesse, Jeff Bisbee, Rael, and surely others. I also saw a few people whom I recognized but who didn’t seem to immediately recognized me. For now, I didn’t go out of my way to catch up, mostly because I was always busy or overwhelmed. Later in the week, I hope I’ll get to be more outgoing.

Good night!

Written on July 27, 2004