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Publicaciones sobre urssus (publicaciones antiguas, página 7)

Urssus update: 12/2/2009

Yes, af­ter months of do­ing noth­ing, I hve made some changes in uRSSus, my RSS ag­gre­ga­tor.

Ba­si­cal­ly, I re­moved the Qt MVC tree for feeds and re­placed it with a old, re­li­able item-based tree.

And now, mag­i­cal­ly you can drop feeds in­to fold­er­s, sort feeds by un­read coun­t, and it all seems to work.

I am prob­a­bly the on­ly uRSSus us­er in the world, so I am not both­er­ing with a re­lease un­til I kick the beast in­to shape with at least some nice fea­tures, but it's some­thing.

Back to my own dogfood.

So, I must con­fess some­thing. I have not been us­ing uRSSus for a cou­ple of month­s. It all start­ed on my va­ca­tion­s. Since I had on­ly my eee, I ran in­to some prob­lems and was forced to use google read­er.

And it was NOT ter­ri­ble. Mind you, it was not great, ei­ther, but re­al­ly, not ter­ri­ble at al­l.

Since switch­ing RSS apps is a pain (be­cause you need to RE­AL­LY catchup on your read­ing be­fore switch­ing), it took me a long time to get back.

And now I find all sorts of prob­lems in uRSSus which I will have to fix. Which means I bet­ter start crank­ing.

Not that it looks bad, it's a hand­some pro­gram!

urssus22

I don't ex­pect to do any­thing like last year's "A re­lease of some­thing ev­ery fri­day" mad­ness, but I will do some­thing.

Al­so, I need to re­write Bartle­Blog, the app that gen­er­ates this blog you are read­ing. It's bro­ken in many ways.

uRSSus in a magazine DVD?

Of course I could be mis­un­der­stand­ing this, but it seems they in­clud­ed uRSSus 0.2.10 in a DVD for some rea­son :-)

The link and I will not make a "in so­vi­et rus­si­a" joke.

Lessons learned in a month of hobby programming

A lit­tle over a month ago, on Ju­ly 15th, I opened a Google Code project called uRSSus. Here's the com­mit. My goal was to try build­ing a desk­top ap­pli­ca­tion like if I were build­ing a web ap­pli­ca­tion, us­ing a OR­M, tem­plat­ing, gener­ic views, and oth­er things.

The first thing I learned is that it was more fun to just write the ap­pli­ca­tion and see it grow than spend­ing time writ­ing the frame­work need­ed to do what I want­ed, so I just kept the OR­M, and the rest is pret­ty tra­di­tion­al code.

The sec­ond thing I learned is that for a hob­by­ist pro­gram­mer, this is a gold­en age. I am not ex­act­ly an awe­some pro­gram­mer my­self, and with to­day´s tool­s, I could al­most wish my app in­to ex­is­tence. When I start­ed pro­gram­ming on a PC, I had to swap flop­pies to change from the IDE to the com­pil­er 1. And if I made a mis­take, the com­put­er crashed. No, not the pro­gram. The com­put­er crashed.

Now? I get a pret­ty di­alog, a link to the po­si­tion, a stack dump, etc, etc, etc. Not miss­ing the old days at al­l.

An­oth­er way this is a gold­en age is that there is a lot of code out there. I lit­er­al­ly had to learn my code from book­s. I first "got" C by read­ing the help for a pi­rat­ed copy of Au­todesk An­i­ma­tor's POCO ex­ten­sion lan­guage. There were no col­lec­tions of code I could look at and learn. There were not even any large li­braries of code I could legal­ly use!

And that´s an­oth­er rea­son why this is a gold­en age: Open Source and Free Soft­ware. You re­al­ly can be a pro­gram­mer just by will­ing it and ef­fort. You will not lack tool­s, you will find users (if you are good), you will find helpers (if you are luck­y), you will find free in­fra­struc­ture (svn re­pos, free wik­is, free file host­ing, free ev­ery­thing), you will find li­braries you can use!.

The third thing I learned is that Python does come with bat­ter­ies in­clud­ed. Many things that would be an­noy­ing ef­fort in oth­er lan­guages are just there, ready to be used. Add the in­ter­net, and it´s a Mr. Fu­sion in­stead of a bat­tery.

The ap­pli­ca­tion I de­vel­oped is a News ag­gre­ga­tor and thanks to Mark Pil­grim I had Feed Pars­er and thanks to Troll Tech (Now Noki­a) I had Qt for the UI, and many many oth­er things. I could fo­cus on ap­pli­ca­tion log­ic, not on pars­ing and draw­ing.

The fourth thing I learned is that a month is a long time when you have pro­duc­tive tool­s. Urssus (that's my ap­pli­ca­tion) was func­tion­al (but aw­ful) in a day or two. It was not aw­ful in 2 week­s. It was pret­ty good in 3.In a mon­th? Down­load it and see for your­self, I like it, the SVN ver­sion is much bet­ter most of the time, try re­vi­sion 619 ;-)

The fifth thing I learned is that Python per­for­mance is good enough. I don´t see much per­for­mance dif­fer­ence be­tween uRSSus and, say, Akre­ga­tor, which is C++, ex­cept on places which are ob­vi­ous­ly bro­ken. Sure, the data­base is C, the UI tool­kit is C++... they are all black box­es to me here. I code Python. My pieces do well.

The last thing I learned is that I can still code free soft­ware. I had not writ­ten a use­ful/us­able large free soft­ware ap­pli­ca­tion in per­haps 8 years. I am 36.9 years old... ex­cuse me if I feel mid­dle-aged, sur­round­ed by young­sters which are faster, more ded­i­cat­ed and ac­tu­al­ly have free time.

Be­cause of the pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of the tool­s, I man­aged to code just a cou­ple of hours a day for the first week­s, and progress was still good, so I did­n´t get dis­cour­aged, which is the worst en­e­my of free soft­ware.

It has been a fun ex­per­i­men­t, hope­ful­ly it will be a fun on­go­ing hob­by.

1

Can you guess what I was us­ing?

uRSSus: is that an icon in your pocket?

Yes, some­times I think a fea­ture is much hard­er than it re­al­ly is.

urssus21

So, since re­vi­sion 571, ev­ery once in a while a new fav­i­con will ap­pear in your feed tree when you use uRSSus. No, they won't all ap­pear at once. They will ap­pear when­ev­er:

  1. You ac­­tu­al­­ly fetched new posts from a feed

  2. You restart the app

Once they ap­pear they will nev­er change, ei­ther.


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