Hosed my hard drive

I have a dual-boot desktop, and I usually run Linux on it. I tried to boot into Windows today for the first time in a long time, and Windows did not boot up. I booted into some “safety mode” which restored Windows, but wrote over the master boot record. I guess it is “safety” from Microsoft’s perspective, not necessarily mine. So now I cannot access Linux. I have backed up the important stuff recently, so I am not totally up a creek.

I am trying to follow some online tutorials on restoring GRUB to the MBR via a live CD. So far none of them are working. I may have to reinstall Linux. I would lose a lot of stuff (mostly mp3 files of podcasts, although I could re-download those). I am not too happy about this, but I guess I have to do what I have to do.

Image from Wikimedia, assumed allowed under Fair Use. Illustration of Spartan Kings from Alexandrian World Chronicle, 5th century Greek chronicle.

Another CJUG Update

There was another CJUG meeting last week. One of the current acting officers was not there, so the handover did not happen. So I will have to wait another month. In the meantime, I will contact some other Java user groups and get some input on how to run a group.

At one meeting I met a recruiter who says on his Linked In profile that he has a copyrighted class on how to interview. One idea that I have is getting some people to speak about “getting to know the business,” as people say.

Image from Wikimedia, assumed allowed under Fair Use. Illustration from Quedlinburg Itala fragment, a 5th century Latin manuscript.

Another Update

The CJUG election has not happened yet. Only myself and another person were up for the four positions. But I spoke to a couple of people afterwards, and they agreed that a regular mailing list might help bring some publicity to the group. One said he never checked the Yahoo Group.

Also, I am still working on Shelf Unit. I am testing out the Struts and JSF versions. I am also looking into JUnit and adding some tests. It looks like unit testing database operations is a big pain. I asked a few people at CJUG last night about this, and they mentioned Hypersonic, DBUnit and JMock. So it looks like I have to learn five things just to do one thing.

Image from Wikipedia, assumed allowed under Fair Use. Illustration from Codex Washingtonianus, a 5th century Greek manuscript.

Quick Start on getting involved in James Development

Here is a quick guide on getting involved in helping develop the Apache James server and project.

First you need to fill out a Contributor License Agreement, which you can find here. I mailed it in, and it took two about two weeks until my name showed up on the committer list here.

Then get some accounts on the Apache tools: Confluence and  JIRA issue tracker. The James Wiki is here.

You will also need to get the code. You can get a list of the SVN directory by typing this at a prompt: svn list http://svn.apache.org/repos/asf/james/

The current version of James is 2.3. You can get that here:

svn checkout http://svn.apache.org/repos/asf/james/server/branches/v2.3

Image from Wikimedia, assumed allowed under Fair Use. Illustration from Codex Glazier, a 5th century Coptic manuscript.

President of CJUG

The Chicago Java Users Group is having board elections. I put my name in for president.

I have been going for a few years. For a while there were a lot of people. They had some pretty big names come in: Gavin King, Martin Fowler, Marc Fleury. Then for a while it was pretty bare. Sometimes it was just me, a guy named Rakesh (the acting president) and the presenter. Now there are 20 people or so at each meeting. So Rakesh has done a good job of building it back up.

I have a few ideas about building CJUG up. I would contact other Java Users Groups for some ideas for one thing. I would move the mailing list from Yahoo Groups to a regular list. I spoke to someone who spent a year in Salt Lake City. He told me that he got a lot of reminders about presentations in Salt Lake City, and not much from CJUG. I know you can have Yahoo Groups messages emailed to you, but I still think that the site and the list should be connected. Making the list more accessible might bring a few more people in.

Image from Wikimedia, assumed allowed under Fair Use. Illustration from Charioteer Papyrus, 5th century book fragment.

Shelf Unit

A while back I made an app called “ShellfSpace”. It was available as ShellfSpace.net. It was a Java app that allowed users to enter information about websites (URLs, file extensions) and specify whether or not a site worked on Linux or other Unix-based OS with a browser other than IE. This was back when dot NET started and Microsoft was starting to push Trusted Computing.

I also did it so that if I ever needed to look for a job I would have something to point to. Well, now I am looking for a job, and I need to have something to show off. So I may bring it back to this site. I will also post on my blog about it as well.

I  called it “ShellfSpace” as a joke. I spelled it with two L’s as a pun on the fact that Unix-based systems are accessible via a shell. But I got tired of explaining that, so after a while I just let the domain expire and I just abandoned the site. Now I will call it “Shelf Unit”.

I may also post the source code to it as well. I first wrote it in servlets, then in Struts, and then in JSF. I may post the source code to every iteration.

Image from Wikimedia, assumed allowed under Fair Use. Section of a fragment of 2nd century Greek manuscript of an unknown romance.