A mingling of thoughts and benevolent misrepresentations on tech, language, music and life.

Behave-Django Monkey Patches

I’m building a Django dev environment in Docker, and I want to be able to write Gherkin feature scripts to drive Selenium testing with Chrome and Firefox. I’m using Docker Compose to orchestrate containers named python, postgresql, selenium_hub, selenium_chrome, and selenium_firefox. In particular, I’m using the selenium/node-chrome-debug and selenium/node-firefox-debug images so that I can open the containers with a VNC client where I can watch the browsers run and even interact with them when I need to troubleshoot tests.

Cigar Shop

For a very brief time in college I was developing a comic strip that I called “Life of Slice.” The misadventure depicted below was loosely autobiographical. Why are the initials KM instead of KW? My name used to be Kevin Moriarty. When I got married my wife and I blended our last names. Hers used to be Wilson.

Curvy Worm

MIT’s Scratch platform can get under your skin. No pun inten… Well, no, actually, I’ll just own that. Pun intended. Their visual coding language and web-based IDE are loads of fun, and not just for kids, though definitely also for kids. Every once in a while I get the itch to mock up some old arcade game or other. Below is my effort at a snake game. Unfortunately it requires Flash.

Spring Light

In sun-dappled wood Fleet-footed deer spring lightly Past budding cyclist

soroban — そろばん

For about two years I lived in Japan. It was a long time ago, and it is now a smaller fraction of my life than an hour is of a day. Then again, a lot can happen in an hour, and there are facets of who I am today that I can trace back to that time. Living and working in Japan was both wonderful and difficult. I remember commuting ninety minutes each morning and evening in stifling trains so full at times that I could find nothing to hold onto.

The Dog Injures Me Every Night

There are many things to like about Duolingo, but one of the chiefest among those is the delightful array of surprising sentences that pop up from time to time. Gortaíonn an madra mé gach oíche. The dog injures me every night. Those few words, like a poem, conjure an unexpectedly rich sensory tapestry. And although “usefulness” is a poor measure of an expression’s worth, it only adds to the pleasure to put myself into the scene and to envision the context in which I might, as a traveller in Ireland, have occasion to fire off this devastating linguistic salvo.

Mother of Discontent

Translation and programming scratch a similar itch: I take pleasure in the act of giving form to ideas. On occasion I have been asked how much I change things when I translate. It’s not an easy question to answer. A lot and very little. It’s not word for word, or even sentence for sentence. In the end it’s not the language itself I am translating, but a narrative populated by characters with emotions, problems, and their own ways of seeing the world.

Loopback Workaround

Promenade across the floor, Sashay right on out the door, Out the door and into the glade, And everybody promenade. – Bugs Bunny, cited on IMDb I run a small server at home. I’ve got Plex on there alongside a wee Dokuwiki where I chronicle my impressions of various single-malts and high-end chewing gums. I wanted a domain name for that server, but my ISP does not offer static IP addresses.

Full Stack

“What kind of work do you do?” asks a fellow web developer, someone I’ve just met. The question caught me off guard. “Front end? Back end? Tight end? Book end?” He could see I was puzzled. “Deep end?” “Well, actually, I kind of do all the things. Some better than others, of course, but whatever needs to be done. I work a lot with Moodle and Drupal, sometimes with WordPress, usually on a LAMP stack.