This is the NYPD

April 18th, 2009

More unnecessary force and an illegal arrest. Many officers in the NYPD continue to work of control and above the law.

Check out their use of pepper spray and especially how they deal with a bystander yelling during last week’s New School building occupation:

If you were living under a rock last year, here is the video of a bicyclist being thrown from his bike that got mainstream media coverage:

Stewart Brand on Gavin Newsom’s sustainable cities talk

April 9th, 2009

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom gave a seminar for The Long Now Foundation entitled “Cities and Time”. If you live in San Francisco or are interested in Cities going “Green”, check out Stewart Brand‘s summary of the talk: Mayor Gavin Newsom, “Cities and Time”.

It’s interesting to read about some of the things the mayor would like to see happen in San Francisco. Of course, he won’t be in office to make good on his desires, but these kinds of comments are probably smart if you want to run for Governor of California. ;-)

Why Reddit uses Python

April 8th, 2009

During Steve Huffman’s and Alexis Ohanian’s Pycon Keynote, someone asked why Reddit was moved from Lisp to Python. The reason for moving wasn’t too interesting, but why they have stayed is. Steve gave two “huge” reasons Reddit continues to use Python:

The biggest thing that has kept us on Python … well, there are two huge things. One are the libraries. There’s a library for everything. We’ve been learning a lot of these technologies and a lot of these architectures as we go. And, so, when I didn’t understand connection pools, I can just find a library until I understand it better myself and write our own. Don’t understand web frameworks, so we’ll use someone else’s until we make our own. Don’t understand a lot of stuff. And Python has an awesome crutch like that. And now, as we’ve been learning more, pulling more stuff back in house — just so we can have things the way we like them — it’s made the transition super super easy.

The other thing that keeps us on Python, and this is the major thing, is how readable and writable it is. When we hire new employees … I don’t think we’ve yet hired an employee who knew Python. I just say, “everything you write needs to be in Python.” Just so I can read it. And it’s awesome because I can see from across the room, looking at their screen, whether their code is good or bad. Because good Python code has a very obvious structure. And that makes my life so much easier. […] It’s extremely expressive, extremely readable, and extremely writable. And that just keeps life smooth.

The question gets asked around 25:54 on the video.

WordPress SSL redirect failure

April 5th, 2009

I have had so many problems managing the wordpress software, it’s ridiculous. If I could find a decent replacement, I’d move everyone over, but this appears to be the best out there. It reminds me of the time when all web browsers sucked and all email clients sucked. The sad thing is, WordPress used to be really solid; now every new version feels a bit more degraded than the last. Perhaps I’ll let them blame it on using PHP. ;-) Enjoy:1

$ curl -k -I
HTTP/1.1 302 Found
Date: Mon, 06 Apr 2009 02:08:18 GMT
Server: Apache/2.2.9
X-Powered-By: PHP/5.2.6-2ubuntu4.1
Vary: Accept-Encoding
Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8
  1. HINT: Compare the URL I requested, and the one I was redirected to.

Forbidden Twitter

April 1st, 2009

On most sites I visit, error pages are infrequent. On Twitter, problems are so common the error pages have their own cultural currency. Sadly, I still regularly hit errors without such soothing imagery:

403 Twitter