Write books in the HTMLBook standard using Scrivener

By on October 20, 2014 - Geekery

My favorite writing tool is Scrivener. I wrote the Learning MCollective book for O’Reilly Media entirely in Scrivener, exporting to AsciiDoc. I was afraid this wouldn’t work very well, but it ended up working just great. You can get my export settings and processing scripts from https://github.com/jorhett/scrivener-asciidoc.

O’Reilly Media promotes and utilizes a lot of web standards. They have switched over to using HTMLBook for new projects. HTMLBook is an XHTML5-based standard for the authoring and production of both print and digital books.

To support this in my upcoming book, I created a Scrivener compile format which outputs chapter headings in HTMLBook. Then I wrote some scripts to process the output from Scrivener compile to make valid HTMLBook, cut into parts and adjusted for the expectations of O’Reilly Atlas.

I have released my Scrivener compile settings and scripts so that others can use them. They are open source under an Apache license at https://github.com/jorhett/scrivener-htmlbook.

Where did that duck come from?

By on October 18, 2014 - Opinion Tags:

I use Android phones and the fastest way for me to enter text is to Swype or Flow the words. This is where you press the first key then swype your finger from one letter to another without picking up your finger. It was incredibly fast way to enter text…until keyboards decided that predicting your words is so important that you can’t turn it off.

It is perhaps understandable that when I swype F-I-X-E-S that it might insert F-O-X-E-S. I’m really not prone to talk about foxes, but I understand that guess.

I completely fail to understand when I swype my fingers through T-U-R-N-S and get F-I-R-M-S. Those letters aren’t close. No, my fingers weren’t inaccurate. Yes, I really meant turns. Worse yet is that turns is a valid English word, is found in the keyboard’s dictionary, but is not in the list of suggestions.

Samsung, Google, Swype, SwiftKey: Trust me. I swyped exactly what I meant. You can suggest something else but please insert the word I swyped. Not what you think I meant. Because I really, truly, never write sentences on my phone containing duck.

Why Net Neutrality matters to you.

By on September 10, 2014 - Opinion

Many people seem to believe that the battle for Net Neutrality is a geek matter that won’t concern them. In reality, the loss of Net Neutrality is an important issue that will cost everyone significant time and money.

If the proposed legislation passed, it explicitly authorizes Internet access companies to charge you more to access sites that haven’t paid them as well. Yes, that’s right, the Internet access company would get paid by both sides for the same bytes. However, the most important part of the legislation is that it allows them to block and slow down sites which haven’t paid them. Let’s discuss what this means to you:
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The final print version of Learning MCollective is available now!

By on September 5, 2014 - News Tags:

Learning MCollective

Learning MCollective: Parallel Server Management in Puppet and Chef

Orchestrate change across server clusters in near realtime with MCollective, a framework that works in concert with Puppet, Chef, and other configuration management tools. Ideal for system administrators and operations or DevOps engineers at any level, this hands-on guide teaches you to build and maintain a real installation of MCollective servers and clients in your environment.

Learn how to build an entire installation by hand, know where every configuration file lives, and understand every configuration parameter and what it means. Whether you manage a small environment or one that’s immense in scale, this book shows you how to orchestrate specific actions faster and better than you do now.

  • Tour MCollective’s architecture, backbone, transport, and security controls
  • Configure MCollective components to match your production environment
  • Create and use collectives to handle thousands of remote MCollective agents
  • Use ActiveMQ Network of Brokers to resolve multi-site or redundancy requirements
  • Learn how to use community-built client and agent plugins, with concrete examples
  • Create your own server and client plugins to perform a variety of actions
  • Learn recommended best practices for using MCollective

You can purchase Paper and ePub versions at O’Reilly Media
http://shop.oreilly.com/product/0636920032472.do

It’s also available at:
  Safari Books: http://www.safaribooksonline.com/library/view/learning-mcollective/9781491945681/
  Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/learning-mcollective-jo-rhett/1119919994?ean=9781491945674
  Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Learning-MCollective-Parallel-Server-Management/dp/1491945672
  Books a Million: http://www.booksamillion.com/p/Learning-MCollective/Jo-Rhett/9781491945674?id=6099715226928

Yahoo no longer accepts Abuse reports. Time to blacklist Yahoo.

By on August 2, 2014 - Geekery, Opinion Tags:

Today I received a spam that the headers clearly showed was generated within Yahoo and went directly from their mail system to mine. So I reported it to their published Abuse address, so that Yahoo would know their user is spamming. I received back the following e-mail:

This is an automated response; please do not reply to this email as replies will not be answered.

To report spam, security, or abuse-related issues involving Yahoo!'s services, please go to http://abuse.yahoo.com.

Thank you,

Yahoo! Customer Care

Fail #1: They are required to accept abuse reports at their published Abuse address.

Fail #2: Going to this address gets redirected to http://help.yahoo.com/abuse/ which has hundreds of different links, but after spending 30 minutes looking through every single one of them not a single one provides a place to report a spam sent by Yahoo.

Result: Yahoo no longer accepts spam reports. I am therefore blocking Yahoo on every mail gateway for which I have control, and listing them in the Pink Providers blacklist effective immediately.