subclipse

For the zillionth time I decided to spend some time trying to get subclipse (http://subclipse.tigris.org/) to play nice with our svn+ssh repository at work. For those scratching their heads: eclipse is a popular java development ide; subversion is a version management system and subclipse is a subversion backend for eclipse’s team synchronization functionality. Until recently subclipse did not support subversion repositories secured with ssh, which unfortunately is a very common type of subversion repsository (and also very easy to setup). So, no subclipse. The reason was that subclipse depends on a native subversion library which in turn depends on the presence of ssh. That’s a lot of dependencies and it doesn’t work without a lot of tinkering and even then it may not work.

But the good news is that the guys at http://tmate.org fixed things for the subclipse guys by providing a java only implementation of the svn library. I installed it today and it works beautifully. The eclipse team synchronization stuff looks really useful and with subclipse finally working I can now put it to work.

Pivot

I’ve long avoided the use of an actual php based blog tool. However pivot makes it really easy to do what I want and I plan to not touch any of the php stuff so I installed it. It’s a pretty nice cms / blog tool. It seems to have everything a blog needs like comments, rss feeds, archives, etc. Also it doesn’t use a database so it is portable and maintenance free. It’s just a bunch of files in a directory. I like it that way.
I still need to fix lots of things like getting rid of the default layout and putting some content on this page. The frequency of posts won’t necessarily increase btw.

Anamorphic aspect ratio calculator

Anamorphic aspect ratio calculator. I sometimes play movies from my PC to my widescreen TV. Unfortunately the tvout of my Geforce 4 card does not support widescreen. In other words, it sends a signal with a 4:3 aspect
ratio to my tv. Luckily my tv can stretch the image to 16×9. Normally this would result in a flattened picture on the tv, which is not the intention. So suppose you have a cinematic dvd movie (aspect ratio 11:5) and want to play it on the tv. If you just send it to the tv, you’d have a 4:3 picture with enormous black bars ontop. Using the zoom function of the tv it will display fine but you are also not using a significant amount of tv signal so you’re losing precious pixels!

What you can do instead is change the aspect ratio of the movie and let the tv stretch it back to its orginal 11:5 aspect ratio. The new aspect ratio for the film is called the anamorhic aspect ratio and you can
calculate it with this neat little calculator I created. You can enter the results in bsplayer,
which allthough enormously feature rich does not have an anamorphic setting built in (at the moment of writing) and play your movie using the full available resolution and enjoy the extra detail :-).

The jar file can be started by double clicking on it (windows, must have a Java 2 jvm installed of course) or running “java -jar anamorphic.jar” from the commandline. Source code in the form of an eclipse project can be found here.

If this all sounds too nerdy, just download media player classic from sourceforge.net and use the options->pan&scan->scale to 16:9 option to get the same effect.

Explorerer menu option to generate m3u file for directory

If you are like me, you probably ‘receive’ mp3s occasionally. Unfortunately, most mp3s do not have proper filenames and generally have incomplete metainformation tags attached. I’m one of these guys who likes the songs on an album played in the order they were put on the album. So, I rename the songs with the track number listed first with leading zeros if appropriate (for sorting) and then use this small windows shell extension to right click on the folder and automatically create a play.m3u file. On win2k or winnt you can just rightclick on the reg file and choose install. On win 9x you need to open the file and replace cmd with command and then right click and install. One limitation is that the windows commandline does not handle some characters correctly (e.g. scandinavian characters, like a few of my favorite bob hund songs).

Update 26 Aug 2002, it seems Bill Gates can’t even get the dir command right.

Update. GRR, on some machines the /s parameter was working correctly while on others it wasn’t (used the ancient 8+3 format for files, even on ntfs). I’ve removed it for the moment so the command does not work recursively.

JQWeb

JQWeb is a software package for creating and running webquestionaires. You can create questionaires with JQWebEdit, save them as an XML file. The XML file can then be read by the JQWebServlet which produces an HTML form. The response of the form is processed by another servlet which simply appends it to a textfile. This textfile can than be read by JQWebEdit for analysis. Currently the only analysis supported is converting to tab separated format for easy importing in spreadsheet programs but more complex analysis strategies are on my to-do list. JQWeb is available under LGPL so you can change it as much as you like. And change you should because I never bothered to finish the program.

Beercan crusher

BeercanCrusher. This is a demo application for Aspectj I created for my own pleasure. It is absolutley completely useless. The demo requires AspectJ 0.6 and won’t work on later versions. Porting is also not easy to do because some features were removed from the language that I rely on in this demo.