Author Archive

Ruby on Rails derailed by unknown creature.. film at 11.

January 25, 2007 1 comment

It’s so damn frustrating when Ruby on Rails does not want to cooperate. I started working back to the rails4days pdf that helped me start the basics into RoR and even that pdf doesn’t cover the problems that I am having. I think the problem may lie with the fact that my plural versions of the names of my databases are not the same. That’s the only thing I can think of…

I have created a MySQL database called “ruby”. Inside this database is a table called “tacops”. I populated ‘tacops’ with the proper fields that I want populated inside the scafford that I will create later on (scaffold :tacops). Anyway, i put in the directory rails ‘tacops’. Something I probably should have named ‘ruby’ but doesn’t matter at this point (at least I don’t think so). I have Apache pointing into that directory (c:\www\webroot\tacops\blah blah blah). I ran the controller script, the model script and the scaffold scripts. I edited the controller script and added “scaffold :tacops” line into the script to activate the tables for rails. When I go to the site, it just tells me “uninitialized constant Tacop”. I ran every scenerio I could think of to correct the issue, but I think ruby has a problem when i name my databases plural instead of singular. The problem with that is the notification system I want to impliment is tacops. It’s not plural but alas Ruby think’s it is.

Either way this shouldn’t cause a problem..right? I won’t get the chance to work on this issue on this database for probably another couple of weeks because I am being relocated to my old spot in the back area again. It has a win2k machine and I don’t feel like installing servers everywhere I go. I have 2 apache servers and ruby installed on both machines as well.

I’,m just a little frustrated today. That’s all. I just need to get my Linux box working with ruby but I haven’t put much effort into that either. Just another project..

Categories: Nerd Stuff

Cable vs iTunes & Netflix

January 25, 2007 Leave a comment

Trade your cable for Tunes & Netflix

I just recently read an article (link above) where a blogger traded his cable (being Comcast) in for iTunes and Netflix. The effect saving him $300 a year. The reason was, the shows he actually watches was on iTunes that being only a couple of shows – available for $2 each and whatever movies he wishes (Netflix subscription). I think this is a great idea for those who are really picky in what they watch and granted it’s on the iTunes store available for download. However, I think this only works for certain people, not everyone is apt to this general practice. One reason being is there are many shows that are NOT available on iTunes. Another reason is, that services (like Comcast) have on-demand capabilities that allow certain programming to become available.

Services like iTunes is great because they offer shows may have been the shows your missed the night before. There are even shows that have full downloads available free on their website, ie: There are many shows that are not available on iTunes (example, Mythbusters shown in Discovery) that you would have to download via bittorrent or any other illegal means. The legitamite reason for going to iTunes in the first place to to become legitimate, and second to have availability. However, if there are shows that are not available, you may be tempted to go the illegal route and find the bittorrents of the programming you missed and by-pass the buying all together. Esentially, you end up going free anyway, cancelling out the iTunes / purchasing all together. Bummer for the industry.

Secondly, you have services like Comcast that offer on-demand services. Programming that is free (including movies) that are avaialable. All you need is one of their digital boxes. Myself (for example), I have Comcast with basic cable. I also have their digital box (I believe it’s $5/month extra) with basic cable (that being $14 a month). If I am paying $20 a month (rounded up) x 12 = $240 a year. This also gives me the capability of using that for movies that I want to see and especially gives me the children’s programming that my 2 kids watch. They love the PBSKids stuff and anything else they can watch. The on-demand programming effectly gives me this type of programming available with their basic service. I also do not have a Netflix account either so I don’t even have that bill. I may not know what the Netflix monthly service usually costs, but I know it doesn’t match my $240 a year service.

All together, I think the model described in the link only applys to certain people. People with kids like myself don’t apply because they tune into different types of programming and in effect negates the need for movies and other downloadable iTunes programming.

Categories: Reviewish

Would I switch to a Mac after Vista is released?

January 24, 2007 2 comments

My friend Ben and I got into this conversation. We were talking about the new Mac announcement set for Feb. 20th. I told him about the possible rumors set abound with Leopard, iLife ’07, the 8-core Mac’s and such.

Then he mentioned the oddest thing which I dared not ask in detail because that would be a conversation and a half. He then told me that if I could piece together a laptop from scratch, then he would give Windows (Vista) a positive thought. It really baffled me as to why I would piece together a laptop from scratch. Even Mac computers aren’t pieced together from scratch. They’re all manufactured (OEM) from Apple, not companies like Dell, HP, etc. I will ask him about the details about it later. Either way, I told him that my next laptop would not be a PC but instead a Mac.

My reasoning behind it is because I can not only have the Mac OS on it, but I can load Linux and Windows (respectably). A little hard core to have 3 OS’ on a laptop, but it’s something i’m interested in doing. Having an 8-core Mac to play on.. is well.. like having an ant killed with a sledgehammer. Who wouldn’t want that sort of power available. It definately would not become obsolete in the new few years, but it seems that hardware is caught up to their software predicessors.

Ben may be an Apple buff, but Apple does know where to put their money where their mouth is. I don’t know, I guess I need to be diversed. I haven’t really played with a Mac, just Windows and Linux. Don’t get me wrong, I can get around in a Mac, but it’s something that I definately need to get my feet wet in.

Would I use Vista when it’s released. Well, you won’t catch me in the Vista line. I’m already using Vista Ultimate (RC2–maybe..) but i’m not eager to rush out to get an OS that is a few hundred bucks. Yes, you can get OEM version on ebay but i’m not too excited to get out there yet. I’ll wait, my Vista is just fine the way it is. Same goes with Linux on my laptop (although the flash doesn’t work too well on Linux, but that’s a known issue in the Linux community).

Categories: Reviewish

Steve Wozniak failed High School German

January 23, 2007 Leave a comment

So I went to a housecall yesterday to a gentleman who wanted his DSL from SBC Global hooked up. During the install process, I was talking to this gentleman and he told me that he used to teach High School German and (I think spanish). He went on and told me that one of his students used to be Steve Wozniak. described him as being an odd fellow. Never really cared about the class. He eventually ended up failing the German class all together because he was “monkeying” around in the class.

All together I think it’s really interesting information on someone we all know so well.

Categories: Nerd Stuff

Hello World

January 16, 2007 Leave a comment

Here’s the first post on this blog.

My recent project has been programming on Ruby on Rails.  The easiest part (for me anyway) was setting up MySql. I was playing with SQL earlier these past few months so it was rather natural on how SQL works. I’ve also been using a program called HeidiSQL which makes a graphical representation of SQL. It’s a really helpful program. Especially when it comes to moving tables, databases, etc. Until today, i’ve had Ruby on Rails on my computer at work. I was playing around with it trying to get the idea of how it works. I think I have an idea of how it’s run, however there are a few things I don’t like about it. I don’t know if it’s me that is having the issues or Ruby itself.

  •  – First, the problem I had was which database it was calling on.  When I selected a database, I had to manually change the location of it. This only occurred when I used the built-in Ruby Web-server. Apache seemed to be alright with it.
  • – Second, Ruby seemed to break if something wasn’t right. I had added a scaffold into the code and I accidentally gave it the wrong scaffold to use. When I corrected it, the code would not take. It still would not render the database into the server. Even when I restarted the server it would not take. I created a second project with ruby with identical code and it worked well. I don’t know what it is with Ruby, but it just seems finicky to me. I’m just hoping it’s temporary or just me as well.
  • – Third, there seems to be little documentation on learning about this on-line.  The tutorial I saw on-line (the pdf of Ruby 4 rails) is rather simple.  However, I wanted to learn about different parts and I had to go through myself and break stuff to learn what other parts of Ruby and Rails did for me.  It seems that you have to break something to see what it did.  I did learn from it though.  That is what gives me a better idea of how it runs.

It’s definitely a good start where I am.  I haven’t been too dedicated on working with it.  At work, I obviously have work to concentrate on, however I think I can get a working database setup in less than an hour.  It’s definitely some good learning.

Something that I am going to work on at home (when we move back in after the renovation), is getting Linux installed with MythTV.  My computer is dying and I believe it is a hardware issue.  If that is the case, i’m running a botched version of Vista Ultimate which obviously means that I will not be able to install it again.  I would either have to.. 1) find a legal copy of Vista (Ultimate or Home Premium) at no cost. or 2) install MythTV with my current setup. My problem with that is that I won’t be able to use certain proprietary programs for Windows in Linux.  I believe Wine may be able to resolve that, but I have had very little success in using it.  It will definately be a project I will be working with to get resolved. That’s a whole new article to write about too.

My friend and I went to (or tried to) go to MacWorld.  We had the tickets.. I even still have my badge.  The problem is, that he thought it started on Monday. Obviously, it started after Tuesday (The Keynote), but he thought the registration was the actual opening. Although it was eventful, it wasn’t a complete waste. We went to the Sony Metreon and tried out the Sony PS3. I do have to say that the PS3 is awesome. The graphics were the best I have ever seen. Although I won’t pay anything over $200 for it, it was nice to check them out. Especially on the 60″ Hi-Def TV. My friend and I made an agreement afterward to try and go to CES next year so we won’t miss out on anything again.

Anyway I think that is it for now. 🙂

Categories: Nerd Stuff