Thursday, November 29, 2007

Tip: Bug in Ruby 1.8.5 on 10.5 Leopard

When I first got Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, one of the first things I had to do with compile and install ruby 1.8.5 in order to facilitate my job as a Ruby on Rails developer (as we are just getting around to upgrading our thousands of lines of enterprise code to work in rails 1.2.x).

I downloaded, compiled, and installed, ruby 1.8.5 p114, and for the most part things went smoothly.

However I would intermittently get the weirdest error:

NoMemoryError (negative allocation size (or too big))

I still don't know what the root cause of this error is, but as of this morning it seems that downgrading to p52 fixed my problem.

Hopefully this will pan out in the long run, but so far this error (which I'd see several times an hour during active development) has disappeared.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Rant: Auto-Refresh News Sites

I was reading and article at this morning, who, like many other news sites, seems to think that they need to force a server side refresh on the whole page every five minutes to reload an article so that I can have the latest, greatest, news in some ticker.

In this case the problem was that their server is flaky, and on refresh, it gave me a "Server Too Busy" error! So now instead of getting to read the article (which was apparently in necessity of updating because the content of individual articles changes so frequently), I get to stare at an error message generated by a Microsoft Web Server.

This is just the most infuriating case in a string of annoyances with auto-refreshing news pages.

One thing I consistently find annoying is how Google News has to refresh the news listing on me, while I'm browsing through the article summaries.

Indeed, it always seems to do it when I am about to click on the link to an article I think would be very interesting to read, and it always seems that that article has rolled off the bottom of the list and I have to dig around if I want to read it!

Now the question on my mind is "why"? Why do we need to have our news updated so frequently (or at all)? Did so many important things happen in the course of the ten minutes I was reading the site that I need to have it updated?

And if I'm that addicted to news, what am I going to do for the hours that I'm actually working? Or for that matter, how do I possibly think I could make it through a nights sleep!

Or is it that they think we are so freakin' lazy that we can't hit 'refresh' several hours later to reload the page if we want to be ten extra minutes up to date with the cutting edge news?