For Sale Portobello Mkt by Jason Jones, under a CC-by-nc-sa license.
It would be natural to anyone who doesn't know me to believe I live a life of luxury, international travel and exotic pleasures 1 but there is a small thing I am kinda ashamed of:
I hardly ever got paid to code.
Really! Most of the money I live on has absolutely nothing to do with whatever you read about on my blog.
I make my living doing things like installing Asterisk in call centers, or configuring MySQL replication, or configuring VPNs using assorted piece-of-crap routers and by all means if you need that kind of work done, please contact Net Managers we are freaky good at it and charge reasonable rates.
But while I like that kind of thing 2 I like other things better. I like programming much more than I like configuring Asterisk!
Then again, I am not a really great programmer. I am just about an average coder, except that I am faster than most.
And lately, an interesting phenomenon has taken place.
How much money I earned thanks to my first 14 years of open source and free software development? $0 3
How much money have I earned in the last year of FLOSS development? $500 (and it is bound to be more than that soon).
To a first-worlder that may seem like peanuts, but down here in the land of cheap beef, that's... about 100 pounds of good meat! Or 10 nice dinners in fine restaurants for me and my wife. 4
I am wondering, is this part of a trend? Have others been receiving more appreciation in the form of money lately?
In any case, it's a great feeling when a work of love (and trust me, noone does something for 14 years for free if he doesn't love it) is appreciated.
Just in case: this doesn't mean you have to pay me to get a bug fixed, or to get a feature implemented. However, it does mean that if you like or use any of my programs and want me to feel good about the time I spent writing them... well, you can just send me a nice email, I will be just as happy. Really!
And I do like it! It's like a grownup's version of Lego.
I did get boxed SuSE CD sets for a while but I actually lost money on them since I had to pay taxes.
To all those who have contributed I send my sincerest appreciation, and trust me that all this money has been wisely invested on having fun, cheap chinese gadgetry and chocolate mousse.
I am one of the speakers in the cycle of open python lectures at La Tribu in Buenos Aires, and here is the one where I speak about virtualenv, buildout, nose, hudson and other things.
One of my favourite things about Aranduka as a project is that it's an endless source of small, limited side projects.
For example, Aranduka is now close to being able to sync my book collection to my phone. But... what if what I want to read on the train is not a book but, say, a blog?
Well, blogs provide their content via a feed. And A feed is a collection of HTML pieces glued into a structure plus some data like author and such.
And there's a great module for parsing them, called feedparser. And I have written not one, not two, not three, but four RSS aggregators in the past.
So, how about converting the feed into something my phone can handle? [#] Would it be hard to do?
Well... not really hard. It's mostly a matter of taking a small, sample ePub document (created by Calibre) writing a few templates, feeding it the data from feedparser and zipping it up.
For example, this is this blog, as an ePub and here's FBReader reading it:
As usual, the code is open, and it's here in aranduka's mercurial.
It's not really interesting code, and requires templite feedparser and who knows what else.
The produced ePub doesn't validate, and it probably never will, because it has chunks of the original feed in it, so standard compliance doesn't depend on rss2epub.
Also, you get no images. That would imply parsing and fixing all img elements, I suppose, and I am not going to do it right now.
[#] I first saw this feature in plucker a long time ago, and I know Calibre has it too.