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Preview: Jeremy Zawodny's blog

Jeremy Zawodny's blog

Random thoughts on technology, aviation, and life in general...

Published: 2012-01-06T17:27:07-08:00

Last Build Date: 2010-02-25T17:20:32-08:00


I'm Blogging Elsewhere


I haven't written much here recently. And that's really due to a lot of reason, not the last of which is being busy and that we have a wonderful new kitten named Bear: The other issue is that I've becoming increasingly unhappy with my blogging tools, the custom hacks I've added over the years, and the required maintenance and upkeep. So I've decided to give WordPress a try. You can visit my new experimental (likely semi-permanent) blog here: Jeremy Zawodny's...

Zip Line and Rappelling Adventure in Puerto Vallarta


A few weeks ago, Kathleen and I went on our first cruise together. It was her fifth and my first, so I got to experience a lot of new things. If time allows, I'll try to write about that in the future. But for now, I want to talk about one of our shore excursions. Our first day in port was in Puerto Vallarta. The weather was absolutely perfect: a few scattered clouds, light winds, and about 80 degrees with...

Paper vs. Screen


I arrived at the Knoxville, TN airpot a bit ago for my slightly delayed flight back to San Jose via Dallas. Since I finished my book on the flight(s) out, I stopped by one of the shops to do something I rarely do: buy print media. Well, I still buy books now and then. But today I bought a couple of magazines: Disocver and Business Week. I sat in the Ruby Tuesday's at the airport and managed to read a...

Remembering Barnes


Yesterday was a very sad day for us. Barnes, one of our four cats, had to be put to sleep after we took him to the pet hospital because he was having trouble breathing. A bit over a year ago, Barnes was diagnosed with Diabetes and he'd been getting regular insulin injections (2 per day) and vet visits. In fact, his most recent visit (3-4 weeks back) was very good. The doctor was happy with his progress and he generally...

Sphinx and Gearman: A Distributed Computing AH-HA! Moment


A week ago I decided to finally get serious about putting gearman to use for search indexing. I had been batting the idea around in my head for a long time (too long, really) but figured I should just write the code and see what happens. It took less than a day to get a prototype working in our development environment, but the end result made me very happy. Today, in our production deployment, when a sphinx cluster pulls new...

On the MyBlogLog Shutdown


Marshall Kirkpatrick is reporting that Yahoo! will shut down MyBlogLog next year. Well, color me unsurprised. The service has languished for years. I removed it from my site a long time ago. It made me a little sad to do so, but it was just slowing things down and not really "adding value" as they like to say. It's sad because I was involved in the MyBlogLog acquisition at Yahoo! and believed in what they were doing. I worked to...

Trust Oracle? Why?


In a 10-point press release issued today Oracle has listed a series of "commitments" regarding their acquisition of MySQL by way of acquiring Sun. I am not impressed. As a former employee of a large Internet company (the largest at the time, in fact) that used both Oracle and MySQL, I'm utterly puzzled by this. I can't think of why we should trust Oracle to do right by the users of MySQL--especially the non-paying users. You see, for years Oracle...

Weird Email People Send Me


I really have no idea what prompted this: This is Rev.Willson and am interested in some of your Barrel. I need the Barrel in the specifications of 55 Gallon Barrel. Blue Plastic.So what will the total cost of the Barrel with the dimensions i gave and i need 100 quantities of the Barrel.So i will like you to go ahead and quote me the total charges of 100 quantities of the Barrel + tax without shipping charges included.Because i will...

Speaking at San Francisco MySQL Meetup


I'll be speaking Tuesday night at the San Francisco MySQL Meetup. Here's the blurb from the announcement: Jeremy Zawodny will talk about Craigslist's current use of MySQL, where it's painful, and how things are being re-architected to make the pains go away. This includes hardware changes, sphinx, redis, memcached, and some custom Perl work. Despite not living too far away from the SF MySQL Meetup venue, I'm a little annoyed at myself for never having attended. So this will be...

Fixing Poor MySQL Default Configuration Values


I've recently been accumulating some MySQL configuration variables that have defaults which have proven to be problematic in a high-volume production environment. The thing they all have in common is a network blip or two can trigger some very undesirable behavior. max_connect_errors If a client is having trouble connecting to MySQL, the server will give up waiting after connect_timeout seconds and increment the counter which tracks the number of connect errors it has seen for the host. Then, when that...

Recent Sphinx Updates


If you use the Sphinx search engine and have been watching the development branch (0.9.10) and wondering when to upgrade, I'm here to tell you that "now" is a great time. As of r2037, the last major issue I regularly saw has been fixed. The other big bug was fixed in r2031. Late last week I began testing those fixes in a "burn-in" test I've developed that makes liberal use of indextool --check. Instead of seeing index corruption within...

Oracle and MySQL


In The EU and MySQL, Tim Bray treads lightly on the topic of Oracle's pending ownership of MySQL if the Sun acquisition goes through. I left a comment on his post, but he's likely to be heavily moderating what appears there since he works for Sun. So here's what I posted on his blog. I haven't yet seen anyone explain what motivation Oracle has for pouring resources into MySQL, especially if it eats away at their DBMS business on the...

Lazy Shopping Carts


What's with all the lazy shopping carts? It seems that through the years, shopping carts have become progressively more lazy. Years ago, when a shopping cart was done with its duty, it had to find its way all the way back from your car to the store entrance--either just inside or just outside. But, apparently as the result of an aging population of shopping carts, grocery store designers started scattering "cart corrals" around the parking lot so that the poor...

Pass the Duct Tape


Reading The Duct Tape Programmer really hit a nerve with me. If you code for a living (or part of your living), go read it. I sometimes get annoyed by Joel Spolsky's writing, but this time he hit the nail right on the head. I am by no means putting myself in the same league as Jamie Zawinski, but I definitely subscribe to the idea that keeping my code as simple as possible is going to pay big, big dividends...

Watching Yahoo's Transformation


Having not worked at Yahoo in a bit over a year, it's interesting, amusing, and frustrating to watch what's going on over there. Some of their moves confirm feelings I've had for some time, while others are more puzzling. The Search deal with Microsoft was basically inevitable. You could see even two years ago how out-gunned Yahoo was compared to Google and to what Microsoft was rumored to be thinking of doing. Based on what I knew, Yahoo was spending...