Valkertown Home

Index rss

Welcome to Valkertown this is my home page and blog, recently I moved to static site generation, this is a very basic setup using Poole

Longboarding, part 2 September 16, 2013

It has been a while since the last post, I'm posting this after an intense longboarding session with my dogs. This thing has absorbed me and I'm completely enjoying every moment I spend above my longboard.

After a lot of practicing I got a real longboard, a complete set from Birdhouse which is discontinued now; it was on sale in a sports shop in Bogotá. This board helped me a lot, I improved a lot but for me learning this kind of things is quite difficult.

Complete, Birdhouse

I got overconfident and tried to ride a small hill in a park in Bogotá and fell quite hard. My smashed helmet saved me from a concussion, the other protections I was wearing did their job wonderfully, but my elbow got smashed quite hard and I broke my collarbone. I'm glad I was wearing all my protective gear that day or it might have been much worse.

That day the first doctor did take my collarbone pain and swelling seriously enough and let me go home with a mix of painkillers and a anti-inflamatory shot. I really hate hospitals and as I didn't hit my head, mainly thanks to my helmet, decided to go yo my house and numb the pain with some beers. We got a sling and waited for the swelling in my shoulder and collarbone to subside, after a week or so, we decided it was time to get an x-ray of my collarbone as the pain was still very intense after the swelling was gone. When the results came we could see it was effectively broken and when I went to see a doctor he told me that I could wear a sling or a eight shaped bandage to restrict my movements and let the fracture heal itself, or I could get a surgery with some screws and a plate to fix it better. The research didn't gave me any strong reasong to expose myself to the sugery and if I took enough care of myself I could get away with a minor malunion of my collarbone.

So the result is that I have a minor malunion of the bones yet the result is not bad, as soon as the pain subsided I removed the eight shaped bandage and started excercising my arms where the pain permitted. I have full range and just minor pain when I rest over the shoulder which I do quite frequently; I' getting used to the sensation. I have fallen again and hit the same shoulder a few times and everything feels normal now. The muscle of my shoulder recovered quite fast and the eight shape bandage let me keep a good posture, the shoulder still looks a bit "fallen" but it's barely noticeable

I moved to Cali, Colombia, and curiosly as I wrote in the last post it matches quite well with I was looking for: here I got the chance to improve a lot my longboarding skills at the same time got to create amazing systems in Erlang.

We bought a small plastic board, a paradise board, which served quite well but it's very hard to ride for me and it was hindering @deepsabbath which also got hooked on this, but it enabled us to improve and gave us some parts to assemble boards and experiment.

Cali is a hot place for longboarding and it's the house of the first and currently only longboard carver in Colombia: Wepa Longboards. I fell in love with their designs, the idea of having a longboard crafted here in Colombia and the fact that they carve boards in the native Guadua Bamboo.

Wepa Longboard

I simply love this board, now we have two boards and the habit of finding new places to use them. I can kick now quite confidently and love the carving sensation of my boards. Now I regulary ride my boards to my job and enjoy it a lot, even if it's very short, but the sound of the wheels is something you learn to yearn.

The next step I want to tackle is going to be start riding more hills, getting used to higher speeds and sliding. I might start practicing some tricks from the short boards as they help a lot in acquiring the much needed confidence.

It has been quite a while since I started this longboard trip and I really appreciate the encouragement I have received from the longboarders I have met. Initally this enterpise was received with a lot of incredulity and someone even called it my thirties crisis, and well if it was at least it has rewarded me with a new passion and a skill that I really wanted to have and I'm not thirty yet, I still have that whole year to have said crisis.

One really good thing that I need to note is that I still don't have any expensive equipment and I have barely spent the price of a premium longboard. I think it was a good approach as initially I didn't knew if longboarding would stick for me.

Longboarding March 22, 2013

I grew up learning to love doing difficult stuff, being constantly challenged, tackling difficult problems or scaling big simple problems; these are the things that gives me a thrill.

Recently I've been having troubles in finding new stuff in the programming world or in technology at all that motivates me enough. I have to note that this is after nine years of having a laboratory at my hands where I did build everything I wanted. I had a nice budget to purchase development kits and I did some serious projects using microcontrollers, wireless communications, fpgas, fpaa, embbedded processors, compilers, embedded systems, distributed systems, large databases and while the vast majority of the stuff I did purchase or build never got into a real application, I'm very proud of the ones that did . Right now, I'm building smaller systems in the sense of scale and complexity. It's fun to relax and think, but I have yet to decide which is the next big project I'm going to tackle.

I have a huge list of things that would need to be improved, right now I'm working on the Loovus project and the projects we do at Bora. These are highly challenging projects and require a lot of sofware to be developed, yet I want to keep improving my programming skills beyond the level they currently are. I have been improving my lisp and my emacs, I want to develop another nice system in erlang, javascript is very nice as it supports a lot of the things I learned to love about lisp and erlang. Even so I still need to study more and give it more tiem before I can figure out which is the next problem I'm going to tackle.

I'm tired of doing so many things sitting and not being out with my dogs. So now I'm learning how to ride a longboard, well not really I just got a very cheap skateboard and tested if I was going to like it before spending some real money on a decent setup. At first the board was incredibly shitty, it barely rolled yet it was good enough to start learning how to stand on it and push a bit; soon I decided at least I had to replace the bearings, the ones that came were absolutely useless. After that the board improved a lot and I'm being able to practice with it but now I'm beggining to understand why this board is so shitty and I'm not even trying to jump, the thing squeaks whenever I do any harsh movement and the tracks make hard to do any turning, the wheels are so soft that I suspect they will be gone very soon.

I'm incredibly clumsy at this moment but I feel how I'm improving each time I practice with my shitty board, I know that sooner than later I'm going to have to change the setup as the board is going to start hindering my progress very soon, but right now doing the kick and achieving some decent speed it's my current challenge, I've dropped myself with this thing in some small hills and I love the feeling. Now I'm certaing that I will continue doing this and practicing, I've seen some very nice hills around here that I would love to ride.

Right now I'm beggining the research on the setup I'm going to be buying, yet the naming scheme is aboslutely shitty and the information about specification of the parts is almost non-existent. It seems in this area you have to believe the hype or trust someone that recommends you some brand name, or the real alternative is to try yourself, the selecion is based mostly on experience. It's hard being an engineer and not seeing data about the stuff I'm going to buy. I guess I'm going to be wasting some money before I understand the art behind the assembly of the setup.

I have not yet complete protection but that thing is easier as for my current needs, cheap protection is more than enough but in this area I have more experience and it's easier to pick.

Wish me luck.

Enabling SuperFeedr March 17, 2013

This is a small post about http://superfeedr.com, and now I'm enabling htt://pubsubhubbub.googlecode.com/ in this Blog.

PubSubHubBub is a protocol that enables the notification of subscribers when a publisher updates it's content. It was part of the core of Ostatus when Branbird was alive. Now it will enable me to do the ublog and this blog and people subscribe to it.

I need to figure out the details on how I'm going to use it with the ublog, maybe I'm going to mix it with the mimir as it's a news reader for me.

Also since this blog is handled by static generation I'm only pinging the SuperFeedr when I'm deploying new content. This should be improved as this is done with rsync and the ping with curl.

The current xml of this blog feed is too trivial and I want to improve it.

I'm hoping this change improves a bit the visibility of the blog, and how it can be used.

Theme update February 15, 2013

This time I've decided to go a little further into customizing the original theme for Valkertown, now I've mixed in a theme from bootswatch, which show cases some nice bootstrap themes.

I like a lot what bootstrap provides as in some common elements and design guides for sites and lets you build pretty fast some good looking websites. I don't want to be yet another bootstrap site so the use is quite minimal and I'm keeping everything from the original theme, I'm just adding some elements that mix well.

Also I decided to keep using the µblog paradigm as in short posts which should be accesible via it's dedicated RSS feed, that I might end publishing into my not so used Twitter account

I'm falling in love with this simple site setup and using emacs to write, it simply removed all friction on publishing and keeping a lot of drafts.

The Mimir February 12, 2013

I have setup the "mimir" back online as a simple webpage based on bootstrap, it's very simple and works well for me as a news reader replacement now that Brainbird is gone.

The URL for it is: http://mimir.brainbird.net

It runs every eight hours and collects everything from the RSS feeds I have setup.

I really would like to setup disqus comments back on the articles, I might do it soon, but will be hard to connect the old post with their original threads.

Leaving viper January 30, 2013

Viper as is an emacs mode that enables modal editing in emacs that tries to replicate most of vi(vim?) keybindings and some features. What I like about modal editing is that Io found easier to modify existing code and move around with few keystrokes, I never found vi/vim comfortable or smart enough to help me writting new code and emacs just excels when creating macros and the fact I love lisp makes emacs my tool of choice.

I don't use many emacs modes but I rely heavily in lots of custom keybindings and I have been using macros more and more and while I can even record macros that involve mode switching and mix and match of vi/emacs functions, I decided that emacs way feels more confortable in my hands.

So I've decided of turning viper for good now, I'm now learning more and more emacs movement commands for my macros and I'm loving it. It was a good experience, I still use vim a lot, but for now on, no more viper in my emacs.

Shutting off Brainbird December 23, 2012

A couple of days ago I decided to shutdown Brainbird as I got tired of keeping it alive and updated. It hasn't been used by most of the users for a long while and I dont have time for it's original purpose. Some of my friends might miss it, but the attention Brainbird received wasn't worth the effort and money I had been throwing at the thing.

I will scale down the server quite a bit now as the main load is now gone and I've been moving a lof of my stuff to static site generation and when not the user base is very small and the task doesn't generate the same load as Brainbird did.

I will miss the @Mimir which was like my feed reader, but I can generate a simpler thing from the script I was using to feed Brainbird.

So long, and thanks for the support of everyone who cared about my experiment while it lasted.

acer-s3 December 02, 2012

I just receive an Acer S3 for work, it's going to be my main machine for a long while, I'm typing this post it.

It's amazing how easy is to setup Linux in these things these days, yes I use Arch Linux and the setup is far from easy, but the hardware specific setup I had to do to have all the hardware supported was absolutely zero. And it's not that Arch does anything to provide improved hardware support, it's just that the Linux kernel provides so much hardware support these days that I have been experiencing true plug and play for a while now.

It does weird things for me as it now supports many power management features that can become quite annoying for me as I don't relly like auto-magic so I have been disabling most of them.

It only has two USB ports which is quite annoying, yet simple to solve with a HUB.

Poole November 20, 2012

Poole is a pretty simple but quite handy static site generator that uses Markdown files as source and a single template file.

I like a lot the idea of static website generation as it simplifies a lot the site administration. Specially small sites that aren't updated often or maintained for a single person like this one

Paired with something like Initializr one can bootstrap a new site incredibly fast.

I tried moving from wordpress to octopres, but the lot of Ruby stuff I had to install and the fact I'm not that much into Ruby got me out of it. In fact I tried to setup this on Octopress but the html and styling is very tied to the default template wich I don't like that much. I like a lot the style I adapted for this site and I know it well so I decided to do it on Poole.

So today I moved and merged the blog and my public site into a single source using this tool and the files I got from exitwp.

© 2008-2022 Carlos A. Perilla deepspawn at valkertown dot org