categories / tools

Stuff I found out there on the Internet, or some sort of new aspect of stuff I found out there on the Internet, focused on getting things done. The choice between this and Programming can be a little arbitrary.


February 19, 2018 / Tools
February 4, 2018 / tools
January 2, 2018 / tools
December 25, 2017 / tools
December 16, 2017 / Tools
October 31, 2017 / tools
October 1, 2017 / tools

My macOS iTunes music library includes over 21,000 songs. Some of those tracks contain the wrong information. Wrong title, wrong album, wrong artist, wrong year.

beets and AppleScript helped me fix my incorrect track information.

September 15, 2017 / tools
August 6, 2017 / tools
July 31, 2017 / tools

I am setting up Emacs org mode to track how I use my money. This is a healthy habit, which I applied in the past with a little paper notebook. This needs to be as easy as that little notebook, or I will never use it.

I only want to see how I use my money. This can eventually become part of a budget, but all I want today is the ability to make quick money notes.

  • My friend paid me back some money they borrowed
  • One of the housemates chipped in for groceries
  • I treated myself to coffee.

Stuff like that. Let’s see what I come up with.

July 1, 2017 / Tools

I try out archetype templates from the Hugo static site generator, smoothing the whole thing into my workflow with a bash script.

May 26, 2017 / tools
January 11, 2017 / tools
January 1, 2017 / tools
June 23, 2016 / tools
April 17, 2016 / tools
November 29, 2015 / tools
September 27, 2015 / tools
September 14, 2015 / tools
July 27, 2015 / tools
July 23, 2015 / tools
July 20, 2015 / tools
July 19, 2015 / tools
July 16, 2015 / tools

I am slowly learning more about how to use Atom for real work. First requirement: my “real work” almost exclusively takes place on a virtual machine. Atom alone cannot handle editing those files. remote-atom to the rescue!

July 13, 2015 / tools
July 12, 2015 / tools

Octopress is “an obsessively designed toolkit for writing and deploying Jekyll blogs.” A blog post earlier this year by author Brandon Mathis described frustrations with Octopress 2, along with plans for Octopress 3. I didn’t use Octopress before, so I can’t tell you anything about how much better or worse the newest Octopress is. This release feels like a straightforward and useful extension to Jekyll. Apparently the older releases did not.

July 9, 2015 / tools

Thought I’d share TOKUHIROM’s cpan-outdated tool, which simplifies the task of keeping your installed Perl 5 modules up to date. It simply lists available updates to Perl modules you have installed. That functionality is available in the CPAN shell with the r command, but it is hard to beat the convenience of the cpan-outdated command line tool.

October 21, 2014 / tools
An experiment with using Org mode to write Jekyll blog posts. Table of Contents 1 Introduction 2 Organize Directories 3 Front Matter 4 Configure HTML Export 5 Publishing A Post 6 Followup Introduction Much of what I've read about Org mode has focused on its utility as a task management tool. That's great. I wouldn't mind spending some time on that aspect. Mostly I've been focused on its usefulness for note-taking and writing.
October 4, 2014 / tools

I don’t know about you, but I had a pleasant Saturday. It started with an hour or so of the Coursera Programming Languages videos. I learned a little bit about SML, and have been trying to remember the instructor’s caution about comparing what’s learned in class to other languages. It’s supposed to be a fresh perspective on programming.

September 17, 2014 / tools

I installed Ubuntu 14.04 on a partition of my laptop today. This is not a novelty. What is unusual is the fact that today I decided to track what I installed before I felt like I had a “Minimum Viable Linux.” Turns out there was quite a bit.

August 19, 2014 / tools
August 14, 2014 / tools
August 6, 2014 / tools

Yesterday I finished a little project to set up a reusable Vagrant box for MongoDB and Perl Mojolicious experiments. That project is okay as it is right now, but I would like to get at MongoDB from the host system.

August 5, 2014 / tools

TL;DR Install Vagrant & VirtualBox. mkdir my-box && cd my-box && vagrant init brianwisti/trusty-mongo-mojo. Be aware that this is my first packaged Vagrant box, and it is probably not great.

July 4, 2014 / tools

I have been spending much of my coding time in Python recently. This site is built in Pelican. Many lines of Python have been written for work. I have even been poking at Google App Engine in what spare time is available. The only disappointment is that all of these have been in Python 2. I would prefer to be using Python 3. There is a little free time today, so I will set up a nice Python 3 workspace.

June 18, 2014 / tools
June 2, 2014 / tools

I have been curious about the Emacs Client for a long time. Because Emacs can have a long startup time, it can be made to run in a persistent mode. All buffers are handled by a central process. Your editor interface connects to that central process rather than managing its own buffers. Thinking about the Emacs client is what started me down the path of studying Emacs as a client/server Lisp environment. Anyways, I looked up some blog posts to tell me what to do.

May 31, 2014 / tools

TL;DR? git branch -r to list remote branches. git checkout --track -b <local-branch> <remote>/<branch> to check your branch out.

May 30, 2014 / tools

Today I got to take part in a User Experience Research interview with some fine folks from GitHub. It was straightforward. We chatted for about half an hour, mostly discussing GitHub. Makes sense. They learned how I used it. Since there is so little of GitHub that I use, they got to show me some nifty things.

May 27, 2014 / tools

The other day I talked some sort of nonsense about organizing my notes into some sort of coherent blog post. Heck with that. Life is too short. Instead I will just dump them here and hope somebody finds them useful. Maybe later I can do something with it. For now it’s just supplemental material for the official Emacs tutorial

May 24, 2014 / tools

I am trying to really learn how to use GNU Emacs. One thing that strikes me is how the Emacs user interface can be thought of as a client application to an Emacs Lisp API. This is not a revolutionary thought, but it really stuck in my head. I reread the official tutorial, focusing on the functions rather than the keybindings that invoke them.

May 16, 2014 / tools

TL;DR? C-h v org-export-backends to ensure that Markdown export is available. C-c C-e m m invokes org-md-export-to-markdown. You may need to update Org Mode, which could be a fussy process.

March 26, 2014 / tools

Ember.js is an impressive piece of work. It can also be painfully verbose. A little syntactic sugar would make that go down easier. EmberScript is CoffeeScript with fine-tuning specifically for Ember.js. Fine-tuning includes bits like replacing class and extends with Ember.class and Ember.extends.