this looks like a job for... tomorrow!

My Hack Week

By now, all blog aggregators have been inundated by Hack Week posts. I'll finish up the week by adding mine. :)

I decided that part of my Hack Week would be to venture from my "happy place" of Winforms in Visual Studio and write something in GTK# using MonoDevelop. I chose to write a plugin for Banshee that allows it to sync with and display files generated by taking your iPod for a run with the Nike+ accessory. Oh, and using Moonlight, just because it seemed fashionable.

I didn't get as far as I would have liked because I struggled alot with compiling and installing all the Moonlight prerequisites to the right places. I no doubt have several copies of mono, moon, olive, and cairo floating around on my SuSE box now. :) It should be a lot easier when Moonlight is a little more 'finished' and comes in a neat little package. But it was a great learning experience for things I didn't understand: prefixes, LD_LIBRARY_PATH, and PKG_CONFIG.

Anyways, here's what I got finished. This is displaying all the run files I have:

This is displaying the pace over time of the latest run:

I like to think that my out-of-shapedness is a testament to being a computer geek, so no need to point out that the graphs show my inability to run. Thanks.

I left a little list of what works and what doesn't work on the Hack Week page. Hopefully I will get around to finishing it up some day. I figure there isn't much hurry, as Moonlight needs to be stable and packaged first.

Anyways, next week it's back to Winforms!

My First Year of Mono

A year ago today I made my first contribution to Mono. I was in a very interesting work situation. I was being paid to work on a project that didn't really exist, so basically I sat in my home office and did absolutely nothing except be ready should I get a phone call or email. This of course led to extreme boredom, not having anything to do but yet unable to leave the house. So I decided I better find something to keep my sanity.

I had watched the Mono project for years with interest, and decided that there were some easy things in Winforms 2.0 that I could implement to help out and as a way for me to learn C#. So a year ago today I submitted a zip file of 57 new 2.0 enumerations. From there I moved to new EventHandlers and EventArgs. Next came the VisualStyles namespace, then FlowLayoutPanel, SplitContainer, TableLayoutPanel, and finally the network of *Strip controls. I also deviated a bit to make a little app called MoMA.

I hadn't taken any vacation last year and had never been to Boston, so on a whim I went to the Mono Summit to hang out with a bunch of people I had never met. There I got to put some faces with names and make some contacts that would land me a full time Mono job with Novell when my company decided it could offshore my sitting around.

Since then it's been finishing up *Strip stuff, implementing all kinds of random Winforms goodness, and fixing bugs. I think it's been a great year, and I can't wait to see what year two brings!

Also, I want to thank those who took a chance on some random guy who showed up in #mono-winforms and didn't really know much about Mono, but wanted to help. Thanks pdb, jchambers, toshok, jackson, spouliot, mkestner, and miguel for your patience and your guidance!