This site was changed over to markdown-based authoring almost two years ago, but the back end always was a bit sluggish. Naturally I cache the converted data, so this wasn't a big issue until now.

Yesterday I reworked everything with a new css base (, quite nice, and a few silly glyphicons from, just because I can). Now the site should almost work properly for mobile kit, and it's still all pure CSS and no Eczemascript whatsoever.

While experimenting and hacking that stuff up I saw that some pages really really took time to prime. As it turns out, good old standard Text::Markdown is horribly slow. A number of my source articles took 5+ seconds to convert, each, and these are mostly very simple files. Can't have that.

So, today I completely reworked the back end with redis as an optional cache across processes /and/ a better markdown renderer.

markdown is not exactly strictly "standardized", and there's only discount as a practical alternative (for me), but that's primarily a C library and a command line tool. There's a perl wrapper for the library, Text::Markdown::Discount, but that thing is utter garbage (no access to the options, internal gotchas in the code etc.).

And discount is weird; it's got all those 'useful extensions' snort to the markdown syntax, most of which suck and many of which are on by default. yay!

So, in the end I resorted to fork+execing a discount process for every conversion, but that still takes only 4 milliseconds on average...not 5+ seconds as before.

Anyway, long story short, now it works properly. Still, I have to say it: ASS. A_NonStandardStandards_S, too - but then most of the Standard Standards are no much better.

(And should you be unfamiliar with the phrase "down, not across" - that's the ASR motto, being the effective way to slit your wrists.)

[ published on Sun 15.03.2015 21:03 | filed in about/site | ]

why? well, i've just rebuilt my blog engine to use markdown instead of raw html and homegrown hacks. (i had to rework surprisingly few articles, and grep, xargs and of course perl took care of that pretty quickly anyway.)

what, you thought i meant having tw*itter, freakbook, gargle and sundry 'social' garbage buttons on my site? YGTBK: in my book all that stuff belongs to the category 'naughties' and i'm not naughty.

Update (Mon 10.03.2014 19:55):

another evolutionary change:

i've just finished the rebuil the site's engine using mojolicious instead of HTML::Mason 1.x.

i did it mostly for the fun of it, partially because i needed more mojo mojo for work anyway, and last but not least because HTML::Mason and mod_perl2 are somewhat uneasy neighbours.

[ published on Thu 18.04.2013 12:04 | filed in about/site | ]

If you're situated somewhere near the Gold Coast and need a Unix/Linux sysadmin/netadmin/security person/software geek for some Unix-related magic, then you might like to know that I'm for hire (casual/hourly or long-term).

I'm likely not the cheapest around (cf. 'pay peanuts, get monkeys') but then I'm quite good at what I'm doing and have a fair amount of experience (22+ years various Unixes, C, Assembler, Lisp, 19+ years Linux, 15+ years Perl, 10+ years as Debian Developer - thus quite familiar with Debian and its derivatives like Ubuntu - and so on...)

[ published on Tue 16.08.2011 10:42 | filed in about/me | ]
 me in 1972 later that year around 97/98 me, myself and i in 2010 november 2013, still not king of style
  • born sometime in 1972

  • Austrian by chance, now living in Australia by choice

  • classic hacker in appearance and habit

  • graduate of the Technical University of Vienna (with the degree of "Dipl.-Ing. Tech. Math." which is somewhere between a "masters" degree in computer science and/or mathematics and a full PhD) and more recently of Bond Uni (with a PhD).

  • unix/linux sysadmin, security consultant, developer etc.
    This is clearly not my full resume; if you need one please ask.

  • and lots of other things no one cares about to know...but if you do, have a look in the interests section.

Update (Fri 06.08.2010 14:23):

I suppose it was time for a new photo, and Conny delivered a nice one :-)

[ published on Thu 01.01.2004 13:15 | filed in about/me | ]

I finally decided to get rid of Blosxom as the formatting engine for this website: there were some nice ideas but the plug-in system never matured properly, the internals were rather ugly and overall it was way too cranky to make it DWIM.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Wed 28.04.2010 01:11 | filed in about/site | ]

Last week I wanted to show something on this site to my mother, who just recently got herself fast(ish) Internet access. And I couldn't find what I was looking for -- at least not as fast as I'd have liked.

Now there is a search function (the form is on the left below the links). Crude, ht://Dig-based but sufficient.

[ published on Mon 19.02.2007 17:32 | filed in about/site | ]

If you want to contact me, and you're not using the Internet Exploder or MS Outhouse, then simply clicking on the comment link at the lower right edge of any post will connect you to an email address that works.

Mind you, both the URL as well as the email are close to the edge of what the standards allow. So far none of the spammer scraping engines has had sufficient clue to use these links. The same is true for Outhouse, I'm being told by friends. Well, that's GOOD: get yourself a Real Mail Program if you need to communicate with me!

[ published on Fri 16.02.2007 23:28 | filed in about/me | ]

My sister complained about "not finding old stuff" on this site, so I changed things around slightly: the newest 30 posts stay on the main index page. If its not on the main page, look in either of the archives: by date or by topic. Let's see if that helps.

[ published on Sat 17.09.2005 21:29 | filed in about/site | ]

I'm not going to implement even the most minimal comment functionality for this blog: I detest webfora and their ilk. First such an eyecandy excuse for a discussion board would get spammed dead, and second it's plain stupid to reimplement Usenet on top of the web of crap. Usenet exists! Long Live Usenet! ahem

If there ever happen to be enough people wanting to "discuss" (snort) my posts, I'll set up a private hierarchy on my newsbox and off we go.

For now there's this shiny comment link in the right bottom corner of every post. It serves as a RFC-stress test for your web browser / email client installation, which is a Very Good Thing; think of Darwin at work in the IT arena.

This is a valid, RFC2822-compliant email address: yes=no*&|.{maybe'?#}$^} It also exists and leads to me, which is the sole point of email. I've tried hard to trample on all the badly programmed dataminers' buttons - hard, but without breaking the RFCs. Sneaking this thing through the shell's quoting for something like /usr/lib/sendmail -bv is lotsa fun... My other, similarly built email addy for usenet use doesn't get spammed ever, so chances are good that this will keep out some of the idiots.

Then there is this; a valid and possible but not existing email address, which happens to be what the HTML quoting rules require/allow to be the representation of the above in a mailto url: %60yes%60%3Dno*%26%7C.%7Bmaybe'

And finally, there's the way mailto: urls can be built. Nobody says that the target address has to be the first thing in there. Which leads us to this contact thing (wrapped): mailto:? &to=%60yes%60%3Dno*%26%7C.%7Bmaybe' It's legal. It works. It's ugly. I'm happy. (I won't tell you how much time I've wasted concocting this abomination, though. exmh, btw, barfs on that thing; ah, another bug to fix...)

In general and because it's true: HTML stinks. Its excuse for quoting reeks of puke. XML and SGML fester by design. Still, even a piece of rotting garbage can be good for a laugh at times.

Update (Sun 06.03.2005 20:43):

Works like a treat. Lotsa comment spammers are busy getting blacklisted on mailing to,
which - yes, you guessed it! 10 points!- doesnt't exist (FAVO something).

[ published on Tue 01.03.2005 21:16 | filed in about/site | ]

For friends I've recently produced a website for a paragliding competition with a dark green theme. Which doesn't look too bad (for me being not a design person), so I added it as an optional stylesheet to the main site. Enjoy.

[ published on Fri 18.06.2004 00:00 | filed in about/site | ]

not much work for me, but easier to read for some people in aggregated form. blosxom does support RSS/RDF pretty much out of the box; in fact, every category and every single posting are available as rss thingies: just use bla.rss instead of bla.html. still todo: setting things up so that all html pages display links to the RSS counterparts..

[ published on Sat 24.04.2004 00:07 | filed in about/site | ]

What I write is decidedly, rabidly, never ever politically correct. political correctness and similar doublethink is for lying pollies, marketdroids and other pond scum.

[ published on Thu 15.01.2004 21:21 | filed in about/site | ]

this site is not under construction, it's under deconstruction...ahem... decomposition - gaining a bit here, losing stuff there.

After this switch over to a weblog-based environment updates might happen a bit more often now.

[ published on Thu 15.01.2004 21:19 | filed in about/site | ]

often you'll see me inconsistently switching between capitalising words and all-lowercase. although i'm a perfectionist about too many other things, i'm often too lazy to bother about this particular nicety. whenever you see me using proper capitalisation, it means that i thought of that topic as being important (or wanted to make a good impression).

[ published on Thu 15.01.2004 21:19 | filed in about/site | ]

I hate Spam. If you think about selling me something, forget it! I'll remember you and will never ever buy from you.

If you need to contact me, send me an email. My address consists of the local component az+no+fscking+spam and the domain-part should be No idea what I'm talking about? Read the relevant standards document, then.

If possible use GnuPG and encrypt+sign your message; see my crypto comms page for details.

What only stupid spammers do is to try this mail link.

[ published on Thu 15.01.2004 21:08 | filed in about/me | ]

Well, maybe: a test of whether a blog-like web environment is acceptable for me to work with. I'm not certain of that yet, but here goes.
click here for the rest of the story...

[ published on Wed 14.01.2004 22:45 | filed in about/site | ]

SNAFU is an acronym from the WWII-era that stands for "Situation Normal, All Fucked Up". I think this describes my life and the computers around me way too often to be a coincidence.

More about SNAFU & co can be found in the Jargon File.

[ published on Mon 29.12.2003 23:28 | filed in about/site | ]

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