Python Workshop, Pets, and Salmon

Vancouver Python Workshop

Had a good (and very geeky) time. Met some cool people (including a local Summer-of-Coder)! Sweet. I was almost always in the “Beginner Track,” as I was completely unfamiliar with the language. Paul Prescod did an excellent job of offering a two-day introduction to the Python language, and Jim O’Leary had a great 45 minutes on object orientation. (I’ve never before seen anyone try to cover polymorphism in 5 minutes.) I wish most of it moved at a faster pace, but I understand that there was a large range of skills and backgrounds in the room. All the slides are supposed to be available soon through the website, for anyone interested.

Python’s really cool. I can see myself using it quite a bit. I even got a really cool idea for a project while going for a run, the other day! We’ll see how that comes.

Adopting Pets

Over the last several months, I’ve adopted a catch and release program whenever I find a spider in the house. I put it in a container and release it at the bottom of the driveway when I get a chance. Well, I do find these creatures quite interesting, and I found a rather large jumping spider[1] on the deck, which I found especially interesting! I’ve been reluctant to release him, cuz he’s so cool! The problem? Well, I have to feed him, of course. So far, he’s eaten a pill bug I found for him, and two other (smaller) spiders that I didn’t really intend as food….

Actually, I took the container outside with me , looking for “spider food.” At this point, it contained an ant, the large jumping spider, and a smaller spindly spider. For purposes of brevity, lets refer to the jumping spider as “BJ,” and the little spider as “Petey.” I released the ant because he was able to fit through one of the holes at the top (the spiders didn’t seem interested in him), so I just flicked him away. But when the spiders saw him crawl through a hole, they got really excited! I’m not sure if they saw it as food escaping or verification that it was possible. Both BJ and Petey crawled up to the top of the container and started feeling around.

For a couple of days, these spiders had been living together with no conflict, but when excited little Petey got too close to BJ, BJ lashed out at Petey. So Petey scuttled off, wounded, and now *really* wanting to get out. BJ just sat there watching… and waiting, I guess. Petey tried to squeeze through one of the holes, and managed to get two legs and half his body through. He pulled up and tried another one. All the holes are the same size, so he made about the same progress: 2 legs and half his body. BJ leaped on Petey’s helplessly stuck self, and that was the end of poor ‘lil Petey, his legs twitching. I felt pretty sad for the little guy, I was actually planning on releasing him right after the ant.

Anyways, I took lots of pictures of BJ and he’s been quite entertaining. I released him, today.

MMmmmm, Food

I cooked salmon, last night. It was very good, if I do say so, myself. Jesse declined the invite, but Kurtis was willing to come over for a late dinner. šŸ™‚

Some Link Spewage

  • Synergy is a very nice way to use one keyboard and mouse to control multiple desktops, over the network. I just started using it for my desktop & laptop.
  • is fantastic. Join it. Add me as friend. I’m friendly. izm99
  • If you use Linux, I recommend last-exit as a player. (Of course, I may be toolkit-biased).

  • Excellent talk on how Google is getting people to want to work for them. for free.
  • Vancouver coffee shops that offer free wireless (with reviews!). Been told these weren’t terribly reliable, however.
  • The Fireworks are over. I didn’t go.
  • This looks interesting.
  • Google Browser Sync
  • Cheap domain names (according to a VanLUG newsgroup discussion):


  1. Holy crap, I thought there were 3 posts when in fact there was only ONE!

    My gosh, “BJ” was a huge, mean spider. Can’t believe you expected any other insect to live while being in the same jar. I bet you were secretly enjoying the feeding process.

    I think BJ was really hungry when it decided to jump on Petey.

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