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Temporenc, comprehensive binary encoding format for dates and times

uwstopia - Thu, 30/10/2014 - 10:08pm

Today I published a new side project of mine: temporenc.

Temporenc is a comprehensive binary encoding format for dates and times that is flexible, compact, and machine-friendly. I’ve put up a website for the project at

Please give it a look and consider using it in your libraries and applications!

Plyvel, Pythonic bindings for LevelDB

uwstopia - Wed, 12/06/2013 - 9:03pm

I’m happy to introduce a new open source project of mine, Plyvel. Plyvel is a fast and feature-rich Python interface to LevelDB, a fast key-value storage library written at Google.

The Plyvel documentation contains a lot of information on its usage and installation. Visit Plyvel on Github for sources and issue tracker.

Introducing HappyBase

uwstopia - Tue, 22/05/2012 - 9:50pm

I’m happy to announce HappyBase, a developer-friendly Python library to interact with Apache HBase. HappyBase is designed for use in standard HBase setups, and offers application developers a Pythonic API to interact with HBase.

Gnome 3 has been released!

uwstopia - Wed, 06/04/2011 - 9:01pm

Today, Gnome 3 has been released. The Gnome 3.0 release notes contain lots of information, and a Dutch translation of the Gnome 3.0 release notes (translated by yours truly) is also available.

Check out the Gnome 3 website and the regular Gnome website for more information about this exciting new release!

Gnome loves passwords

uwstopia - Sat, 24/07/2010 - 1:28pm

By default, password entries in GTK+ applications show a black circle when you type a character. Boring! With just a few days to go before Guadec starts, this the time to show that you love Gnome. And you know what? You can make Gnome love you too in return!

Put this snippet in the file ~/.gtkrc-2.0 (create it if it does not exist):

Preparing the Guadec 2010 schedule

uwstopia - Sat, 08/05/2010 - 9:14pm

Today a team of local Gnome and Guadec people gathered at Revelation Space to discuss several topics, including the talk schedule.

Guadec schedule preparations

New coordinator for the Dutch Gnome translation team

uwstopia - Mon, 12/04/2010 - 10:20pm

The (now former) coordinator of the Dutch translation team, Vincent van Adrighem, has been active for more than 9 years now, and despite the small size of the Gnome-NL team, has done a marvellous job getting the Dutch translations into a good shape. However, after so many years, in all his wisdom, he has decided to step aside… which means:

Le coordinateur est mort — vive le coordinateur!

Ssscrape released as open-source software

uwstopia - Wed, 17/02/2010 - 7:10pm

I’m pleased to see that the people at the ILPS group of the University of Amsterdam have released a project I have been working on in the past under an open source license (LGPL).

Calculating the contents of fixed size pagination controls

uwstopia - Sun, 07/02/2010 - 8:36pm

When a web application needs to display many items, e.g. search results or large lists of records, it is often desirable to chunk the total list of items into equal-sized pages for easy navigation. This process is called pagination. Alternative techniques like continuous scrolling might also be worth considering, but this blog article is just about pagination.

Guadec 2010 Call for Volunteers

uwstopia - Tue, 02/02/2010 - 7:15pm

GUADEC (pronounced GWAH-DECK) is an acronym for the GNOME Users’ And Developers’ European Conference. Held annually in cities around Europe, GUADEC is the largest gettogether of GNOME users, developers, foundation leaders, individuals, governments and businesses in the world. Gnome is the Free and open source software stack that drives the user interface of many Linux-based devices, from smartphones to your home pc.

Weltschmerz and Whisky

uwstopia - Sun, 22/11/2009 - 8:35pm

Weltschmerz and whisky

Self-portrait titled Weltschmerz and whisky, © Wouter Bolsterlee, 2009 (click for large version)

Fascinated by cemeteries

uwstopia - Tue, 15/09/2009 - 6:41pm

It occurred to me that I have a somewhat morbid obsession: I can’t help but visit each cemetery I encounter when I’m abroad. For instance, a few weeks back I was in Edinburgh and visited three different graveyards in only four days.


uwstopia - Fri, 10/07/2009 - 10:11pm

Many similar posts are appearing on Planet Gnome. Philip, Jürg, Ryan and others are not afraid of people writing code. But people writing code are scary since they are geeks who do magic things with computers! So…

The Story of the Wallet

uwstopia - Thu, 30/04/2009 - 11:04pm

Please sit back, this is quite a long post.

This afternoon, I got into a train that was about to depart and found myself a quiet place to sit, when I noticed a wallet in the chair right next to me. I was quite sure the owner of the wallet was long gone, since this location was the final destination of that train when it arrived at this terminus station, so everyone had left the train when it arrived. Moreover, the train had been waiting there (mostly empty) for some time already.

Greyscale Xorg

uwstopia - Tue, 10/03/2009 - 1:06am

Colour is highly overrated, so let’s get rid of that new-fashioned nonsense on and return to the good old days of greyscale computer screens!

It’s really easy: in your xorg.conf, add DefaultDepth 8 to the Screen section, and within that section, add Visual "StaticGray" to SubSection "Display".

Now, after restarting X, you will not be distracted by colours anymore: everything will be neatly desaturated.

Bashing Bazaar again?

uwstopia - Wed, 25/02/2009 - 8:49pm

Dear Lennart,

It’s not my intention to start another flame war, but your blog post about bzr clearly shows that your real intention was not to obtain source code, but to bash bzr. I’ll explain why.

MySQL last insert id performance issues

uwstopia - Wed, 25/02/2009 - 4:39pm

So, after suffering from severe performance problems for a rather data intensive application, the culprit was found: a often executed piece of code did not execute SELECT LAST_INSERT_ID(), but SELECT LAST_INSERT_ID() FROM some_table.

Fishy audio metadata

uwstopia - Sat, 14/02/2009 - 6:48pm

I’m delighted to find out that both FLAC and ID3v2 explicitly have support for the only picture type that really matters, namely that of a bright(ly) coloured fish. Both the ID3v2 specification (section 4.14) and the FLAC format specification (see METADATA_BLOCK_PICTURE) reserve picture type 0x11 for a picture of a fish.

Birthday cake

uwstopia - Thu, 15/01/2009 - 10:36pm

I’ve had many birthdays before, but this year’s Gnome cake is awesome. Too bad it’s only a picture. Thanks anyway, Daniel!

Launchpad for Gnome?

uwstopia - Sat, 10/01/2009 - 11:39pm

Perhaps this is a crazy idea, but wouldn’t it be great if Gnome would set up its own Launchpad instance in the future?

The Gnome Bugzilla installation is outdated and hard to maintain since it’s an old Bugzilla version that is hard to upgrade (at least that’s what I understand from Olav). I think Launchpad can be made to do everything Gnome needs (if it doesn’t already).

Magic numbers

uwstopia - Mon, 05/01/2009 - 7:19pm

A few minutes ago I filed bug 566666 (Dutch l10n issue). That means we have 100.000 bugs to go before Gnome will officially turn evil, just like Ubuntu 6.66.

Evolution signature without dashes

uwstopia - Sat, 03/01/2009 - 1:37pm

Most mail messages I send end with my name. It’s quite tiresome to type it all over again (yes, I’m lazy), so let’s try to do something about it.

First try: force Evolution to somehow use a template with my name already typed in when composing a message. I haven’t found out how to do that, and I gave up looking for it quickly when I realized this would only work for new messages, but not for replies.

Gouda by night

uwstopia - Mon, 22/12/2008 - 2:29pm

This is how Gouda looks by night these days:

Illuminated town hall and christmas tree

Illuminated town hall and christmas tree

Every once in a while, the projected patterns and colors change:

I will drink Kopi Luwak again

uwstopia - Sat, 13/12/2008 - 9:20pm

Ha! I got my hands on 100 grams of Kopi Luwak coffee, just like last year. Awesome.


Drawing of a Luwak (from Wikipedia), also known as koffierat (coffee rat) in Dutch, for obvious reasons.


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