Wander

Auto Blogging with Rake & Rails

I have a long running blog that I struggle to keep current. The blog centers on mountain bike racing scene here in Northern California, so the content needs to stay timely as there are races every weekend all year long. Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of free time to devote to it. Long story short, I wanted to automatically create a post every Thursday morning to let people know what races were being held that weekend.

Custom iPhone Notifications with Prowl

On of my favorite iPhone feature is push notifications. However, only a few applications use these well (ESPN ScoreCenter, AP mobile, Twitter, etc.) and I’ve always wished I could write my own without creating a full blown iPhone application. Enter a simple application called Prowl. Prowl is a Growl client for iOS that pushes notifications to your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad with a simple API. To send yourself custom push notifications, you’ll first need to buy Prowl for your iPhone (around USD$2.

Configurable Instance Types For OpenStack

Over the past three weeks, new Nova core developer Josh Kearney (congrats @jk0) and I have been working on adding runtime configuration of instance types (read the full specification) to the OpenStack Nova compute service. Instance types (or “flavors” as Rackspace calls them) are resources granted to virtual machines (“instances”) in the Nova cloud. In more specific terms, this is the size of the instance (vCPUs, RAM, Storage, etc.) that you will be launching.

OpenStack Development with virtualenvwrapper

Coming from the ruby/ruby on rails world, i’ve been a bit lost when it comes to the python development process used in the openstack project. One of the biggest hurdles has been the usage of virtualenv in the workflow. Basically, virtualenv lets you create a stable configuration of python libraries (eggs) much like freezing gems in your rails application. The pitfalls here is that you need to integrate it’s usage into your development flow (activate/deactivate environments), it can take some time to recreate environments if you use a lot of eggs (like nova does) and it seems pretty fragile (it lives in repo and takes some chicanery to avoid duplicating in each bzr branch).

Speaking at CommunityOne

Over the past few weeks, Scott Mattoon, John Stanford and I have been documenting infrastructure patterns to help application developers architect for cloud computing environments as part of a larger program around enabling cloud computing for our customers. It’s been an interesting project, as cloud computing is both very new, but based on some very old concepts. On Monday, we will be presenting our work in progress at CommunityOne West in San Francisco’s Moscone Center.

Open Group Beijing Kickoff

I had a great opportunity to revisit China, part of my old region (and now part of my new global responsibility), as part of The Open Group’s kickoff last week. The Open Group, which recently established a franchise in China with Kingdee, is a vendor-neutral and technology-neutral consortium, which drives the creation of Boundaryless Information Flow™ that will enable access to integrated information within and between enterprises based on open standards and global interoperability.