My Secret Life as a Spaghetti Coder
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Don't listen to the advice out there that tells you to waste an entire weekend backup, delete, create a new (and bigger!) partition, then restore when you want to resize your Boot Camp partition. There is a much easier way: iPartition.

Ordinarily I probably would have skipped writing this post. But there's so much of the bad advice out there that I thought I'd post this in hopes that it will save someone the hassle of the ridiculous process described above.

iPartition is not the most user friendly of applications I've used on a platform known for "just working", but it does get the job done.

For instance, when I opened up iPartition for the first time, there was no indication of what to do. I couldn't figure out how to resize the partition. Well, it turns out that a tiny warning told me: I just had to find it first:

Now I need to find a CD and create a bootable disk. Ok, pop it in to create one, and...

Uh oh! I've got Leopard, version 10.5. Well, now I have to take my laptop home and use the Leopard DVD. But it didn't tell me I'd still need to burn something. That's ok, I've got blank CDs at home. Unfortunately, it didn't say I'd need DVDs either. I didn't bring one from the office, so I had to trek up to the store.

No problem. I figured I'd need to defrag the drive anyway, since it would need to make sure nothing gets overwritten at the end of the drive when we resize it. So, I'll start the defrag while I go out and get a blank DVD.

Ugh. Ok, here are the algorithms:

But the one it says I need isn't available:

Oh well. I guess I'll go to the store and do the defrag after I create the disk. Thirty minutes later, I'm well on my way to resizing partition bliss:

Only one more hiccup: How was I supposed to know what to do or that it was done?

Oh, there you are!

iPartition wasn't the only program that gave me trouble during this process. After seeing the beachball of doom, Firefox decided it couldn't handle the pain:

After I got past all the distractions, the actual defrag process and resizing partitions went really smoothly. Even with all the trouble, I'd estimate it took about 3 hours from start to done. Without the trouble, perhaps only 1.5 hours: and most of that you don't have to be present for - just start it and go lay down to nurse your Saturday Morning Hangover with some Gatorade, beans on toast with fried eggs, and Saturday morning cartoons.

It may cost $50, but it's well worth it. Likewise, it might have given me a lesson in how not to design the flow of an application, but most importantly, it saved me a weekend.

Hey! Why don't you make your life easier and subscribe to the full post or short blurb RSS feed? I'm so confident you'll love my smelly pasta plate wisdom that I'm offering a no-strings-attached, lifetime money back guarantee!

If you follow me on twitter, you already know I ran into some trouble compiling Ruby and OpenSSL the other day. Calling it "Some Trouble" might be a bit of an understatement. The next morning, I likened it to this title bout:

Mac vs. Cthulhu

Not only was Ruby and OpenSSL giving me trouble, in my quest to get it working, I totally messed up everything that depended on OpenSSL.


Yesterday I got sick of typing rake test and rake db:migrate and being told
You have already activated rake 0.9.2, but your Gemfile requires rake 0.8.7. Consider using bundle exec.
I know you should always run bundle exec, but my unconscious memory has not caught up with my conscious one on that aspect, so I always forget to run rake under bundle exec.

So I wondered aloud on twitter if I could just alias rake to bundle exec rake, but confine that setting to specific directories (with bash being my shell).

Turns out, it is possible with the help of another tool that Calvin Spealman pointed me towards: capn.


Logging Good Ideas Without Interrupting Your Flow Recently I decided I'd start using a wiki to manage knowledge and ideas, adding research and thoughts as I flushed them out over time. I'd like to see how the things I think about are interrelated, and I think using a wiki is going to help me on that front.

One problem I've had with the traditional to-do list, emails, calendars, and wikis was that when you open the whole thing up, you can pretty easily get distracted from what you were doing by all of the information that floods your brain: all the emails in your inbox (especially the bold ones), the rest of the to-do list, tomorrow's events, and -- well everyone knows the time-sink a wiki can be. More...


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