I’m a DMOZ editor

A few years ago I became an editor on DMOZ. The categories I chose were pretty static, so eventually my account got deactivated because I wasn’t using it.

But I recently got re-excited about being able to edit the directory, so I’ve gotten my account re-activated and I’m back in business! Maybe after a week or so of maintaining my current categories I’ll branch out and pick up another one.

Anyways, editing is pretty fun and adding or removing sites from the directory can drastically effect their search engine listings, so the changes you make actually matter.

Getting approved for a small category is very easy and only takes a few minutes of work. So head over to DMOZ, pick an unedited category, and apply for it using the link at the bottom.

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Making Eclipse for PHP Useful

Out of the box, Eclipse for PHP is lacking a few vital features.

Problem: How do I run SQL queries in Eclipse?

Solution: The SQL Explorer plugin.

To install:

  • Go to Help->Install New Software.
  • Add a new site called SQL Explorer with the URL http://eclipsesql.sourceforge.net/
  • Select SQL Explorer.
  • Keeping clicking Next/Finish until the plugin is installed.

Problem: Okay, I can run some queries now, but not against Microsoft SQL Server!

Solution: Use the jTDS JDBC driver. (Note: In my experience, this driver is much faster and more reliable than the driver you can get from Microsoft.)

To use:

  • Download the latest driver
  • Unzip the download and put the jtds-1.2.5.jar file somewhere safe.
  • In Eclipse, go to Window->Preferences.
  • In the Preferences window, go to SQL Explorer->JDBC Drivers. Select Microsoft MSSQL Server JDBC Driver.
  • Go to the Extra Class Path tab. Click Add JARs and select the jtds-1.2.5.jar you downloaded earlier.
  • Click List Drivers and ensure that net.sourceforge.jtds.jdbc.Driver is in the Driver Class Name box.
  • Your example URL should look like jdbc:jtds:sqlserver://<server_name>:<1433>

Problem: What about editing files on a remote server? The built in Remote System Explorer doesn’t seem to work…

Solution: Use CDT and Target Management (this includes a working version of Remote System Explorer).

To install CDT:

  • Go to Help->Install New Software.
  • Add a new site called CDT with the URL http://download.eclipse.org/tools/cdt/releases/galileo
  • Select Eclipse C/C++ Development Tools.
  • Keeping clicking Next/Finish until the plugin is installed.

To install Target Management (requires CDT):

  • Go to Help->Install New Software.
  • Add a new site called Target Management with the URL http://download.eclipse.org/dsdp/tm/updates/3.1/
  • Select TM and RSE 3.1.1.
  • Keeping clicking Next/Finish until the plugin is installed.

To connect to a Linux box over SSH:

  • Open the Remote System Explorer perspective.
  • Create a new connection, and select SSH Only as the system type.
  • Follow the wizard.
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Jumbo Jenga: It is finished!

After nearly 2 months, my jumbo Jenga set is finished! I would have finished sooner, but it kept snowing and/or being below freezing nearly every weekend for weeks.

I rubbed the finished blocks with some mineral oil to protect them stains and splitting, and it had the beneficial side effect of making them look amazing! And they conveniently fit into two promotional Windows 7 bags for easy storage.

Anyways, check out the original post if you want instructions on how to make your own!

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What is my IP?

This past weekend I found a fun domain name for a project: ipaddr.es. Yeah, it is missing an “s” at the end, but I think it is still a fun domain.

So I threw up a “what is my IP” style page and am having some fun with it.

What makes IP Addr.es better than the competition? A few things:

  • The IP address is the primary element on the page, located in a big, modern-looking green box.
  • The IP address is included in the page title. I’m surprised how few “What is my IP” sites do this…
  • You can get your private IP. I only found one other site that does this.
  • Each page has a “How does this page work?” link at the bottom that explains what you need to do to copy me. For example, the private IP “how does it work” page includes the source to the Java applet I am using, and explains how to use it.

It has been up less than a week so it isn’t as feature-packed as I hope to get it, but it is already bringing in some ad revenue, which is always a good encouragement to keep adding features. I have a few ideas of basic things to add:

  • Basic internet tools (ping, trace, reverse DNS, hostname resolver)
  • DNS record lookup
  • Spam IP blacklist check
  • Domain WHOIS (maybe.. these tend to get abused by spammers..)
  • Basic encode/decode features (URL, base64)
  • Maybe some basic bin/dex/hex converters..

Anyways, what do you think? Check it out at IP Addr.es and let me know!

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Oracle rocks!

Oracle rocks!

Curtis, an Oracle employee, contacted me a week or two ago to ask for permission to use data from the Fake Name Generator at Oracle. I freely license the data under both a Creative Commons license and the GPLv3. While these licenses are wonderful licenses for people working on open projects, they leave a bit to be desired for closed-source commercial projects.

Because I like Oracle and I know they aren’t going to do anything nefarious with my data, I promptly gave Curtis and Oracle permission to use the data from the Fake Name Generator under the CC license without the “Share Alike” condition. This basically gives them permission to use it however they want as long as they give me credit.

As a “thank you”, Curtis sent me a couple fun goodies: an Oracle pen, hat, t-shirt, and coffee hot cocoa mug. I’m looking forward to the next casual Friday at work!

Just one more reason I love Oracle. :)

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