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Welcome at MirBSD!

MirBSD is mirabilos’ Open Source playground. (You might also have arrived here looking for MirOS, MirPorts or MirSolutions — these are no longer. This website contains, however, a lot of historic information about those; see e.g. the About page linked to the left.) Primary way of contact is IRC (as, also, linked in the menu.) Please consider to donate if you like my work.

News / weblog

ISP change

2019-04-22
Tags: hardware personal

I’m going to be switched from ADSL (version 1) at Netcologne to VDSL with Vectoring at Telekom Business tomorrow. So, if I seem to have fallen off the earth, you’ll know why.

I should also take this as chance to replace the ne(4) NIC my current DSL modem is connected to (a 10 Mbit/s card, but at least already PCI) with another fxp(4) to make use of the more speed (50/10 Mbit/s instead of 4/½ or so).

I’ve set up Backup MX (already had Backup NS), so nothing should suffer too much except response times, perhaps.

The Freizeitkarte offline OpenStreetMap vector maps can be rendered with MapsForge, a library which is embedded in several Android applications like c:geo. (Note that c:geo ships two instances of it, the “old MapsForge v3 API” which works much better on my ancient HTC Desire and the standard newer one.) However, this uses the stock rendering theme of MapsForge by default, which is an old Osmarender one (in v3 at least, later MapsForge extends it) and kinda sucks for detailled navigation, such as what GPS Stash Hunters need to do.

Thankfully Freizeitkarte ships a MapsForge theme, well two, one with more contrast or something. Did I say “ships”? Oops, “shipped” is more correct. It was taken offline (with, unfortunately, no trace any more online) some years ago due to difficulties or something.

Luckily, I still have a copy (in which I enabled several “extra” features (such as displaying bus stops, which ought to be default…) which I can use. But this has several problems: it needs fixing, as upstream said, and OSM also developed, so I could not see any ramps (lanes to join/exit highways) any more.

Well, jupp and XML editing and OSM data inspection to the rescue. I now maintain the XML in a private git repo (although I unfortunately only have the preconfigured one as starting point), and I extended, changed and fixed it a lot and redrew two of the images, and freizeitkarte.zip is the fruit of these efforts. It likely can still use more fixing and extending but is at least usable, and the licence is rather liberal. Perhaps I should rename it to Mirzeitkarte to clarify it is not the original any more, but for now I did it in the title of this wlog entry. (Dear Freizeitkarte people, please do contact me if you have anything to say. We could even populate your fzk-theme github repository.)

Update 2019-04-22: I’ve renamed the XML (but not the PKZIP archive name, as to not break deep links) and have fixed more stuff, continuing to do so. Freizeitkarte people just pointed me to Geoclub (an independent webforum) for “support”, so they seem to not be interested. I do have permission though.

In unrelated news, the Free Music repository also grew, and the soundfont has an update.

I’ve updated a lot of things in MirBSD and for use with the Debian operating system. More to come, pax(1) has been converted to Mirtoconf (the successful Build.sh system of mksh’s) but needs to be re-ported to a lot of systems (and some more bugs squished). My “WTF” APT repository also received a number of updates, such as to the ever-desired wtf(1), but it’s the time of that two-year cycle which invites general care for all of one’s packages.

On the other hand, MirBSD stops offering RSS feeds by tags. The world has become more insular, first by DSGVO, now by other cultural issues. I’ll be at FOSDEM, as usual, though, so rejoice!

You can now directly download, for all platforms and synthesisers, the soundfonts shipped in Debian for MuseScore (and others) I maintain. This service may cease at any time, without notice. Also, do mind the MIT licence.

On an unrelated note, happy new year in the western calendar!

learn.to/quote

2018-10-25
Tags: archaeology debian news pcli tip

The “properly quote eMail messages and on Usenet” documentation is hosted on a server that appears to not get too much care at the moment. I’ve dug out workable versions:

The original link, with its http://learn.to/quote/ redirection, which contained the links to the translations into Dutch and English, unfortunately no longer works.

I’m asking everyone to please honour these guidelines when posting in Usenet and responding to eMail messages, as not doing so is an insult to all the (multiple, in the case of Usenet and mailing lists) readers / recipients of your messages. Even if you have to spend a little time trimming the quote, it’s much less than the time spent by all readers trying to figure out a TOFU (reply over fullquote) message.

Ich bitte jeden darum, sich bitte beim Posten im Usenet und Verfassen von eMails sich an diese Richtilinien zu halten; dies nicht zu tun ist ein Affront wider alle (im Falle von Usenet und Mailinglisten viele) Leser bzw. Empfänger eurer Nachrichten. Selbst wenn man zum Kürzen des Zitats ein bißchen Zeit aufwenden muß ist das immer noch deutlich weniger als die Mühe, die jeder einzelne Leser aufwenden muß, herauszufinden, was mit einer als TOFU (Text oben, Vollzitat unten) geschriebenen eMail gemeint ist.

Mag ik iederéén verzoeken, postings in het Usenet en mailtjes volgens deze regels te schrijven? Als het niet te doen is vies tegen alle ontvanger’s en moeilijk om te lezen. Zelfs als je een beetje tijd nodig heb om het oorspronkelijke deel te korten is het nog steeds minder dan de moeite van alleman, om een TOFU (antwoord boven, fullquote beneden) boodschap proberen te begrepen.

Nik wishes you to know that the Movim packaging sprint (sponsored by the DPL, thank you!) is handled under the umbrella of the Debian Edu sprint (similarily sponsored) since this package is handled by the Teckids Debian Task Force, personnel from Teckids e.V.

After arriving, I’ve started collecting knowledge first. I reviewed upstream’s composer.json file and Wiki page about dependencies and, after it quickly became apparent that we need much more information (e.g. which versions are in sid, what the package names are, and, most importantly, recursive dependencies), a Wiki page of our own grew. Then I made a hunt for information about how to package stuff that uses PHP Composer upstream, and found the, ahem, wonderfully abundant, structured, plentiful and clear documentation from the Debian PHP/PEAR Packaging team. (Some time and reverse-engineering later I figured out that we just ignore composer and read its control file in pkg-php-tools converting dependency information to Debian package relationships. Much time later I also figured out it mangles package names in a specific way and had to rename one of the packages I created in the meantime… thankfully before having uploaded it.) Quickly, the Wiki page grew listing the package names we’re supposed to use. I created a package which I could use as template for all others later.

The upstream Movim developer arrived as well — we have quite an amount of upstream developers of various projects attending MiniDebConf, to the joy of the attendees actually directly involved in Debian, and this makes things much easier, as he immediately started removing dependencies (to make our job easier) and fixing bugs and helping us understand how some of those dependencies work. (I also contributed code upstream that replaces some Unicode codepoints or sequences thereof, such as 3⃣ or ‼ or 👱🏻‍♀️, with <img…/> tags pointing to the SVG images shipped with Movim, with a description (generated from their Unicode names) in the alt attribute.)

Now, Saturday, all dependencies are packaged so far, although we’re still waiting for maintainer feedback for those two we’d need to NMU (or have them upload or us take the packages over); most are in NEW of course, but that’s no problem. Now we can tackle packaging Movim itself — I guess we’ll see whether those other packages actually work then ☺

We also had a chance to fix bugs in other packages, like guacamole-client and musescore.

In the meantime we’ve also had the chance to socialise, discuss, meet, etc. other Debian Developers and associates and enjoy the wonderful food and superb coffee of the “Cantina” at the venue; let me hereby express heartfelt thanks to the MiniDebConf organisation for this good location pick!

Update, later this night: we took over the remaining two packages with permission from their previous team and uploader, and have already started with actually packaging Movim, discovering untold gruesome things in the upstream of the two webfonts it bundles.


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