We baked a cake for dinner with the Browns last week. It was a cake Rebecca and I had sampled at my Mom’s house and I needed to have again.
While it’s obvious my dusting technique is wanting, that didn’t affect the taste. Given the opportunity the Browns and Jorgensens would have devoured at least half a cake more.
Cake mixes are awesome. They’ve got all kinds of neat stuff in them to make it hard to fail. They can also be boring. People will even try to fix a boring cake by putting frosting on it. Yuck! By contrast cakes from scratch require some education and some care to get right. Luckily you can have your cake and eat it to. Cake mixes can be used as the basis for tastier, more interesting baked goods.
The cake in question here is Almond Cream Cheese Pound Cake from The Cake Mix Doctor by Anne Byrn.
We were once given a bag of some unknown mix and directions for cookies. Months later we finally gave it a try and were delighted at the results. We hungered for more only to discover weeks later what you have already surmised.
Regarding dusting: If someone knows of a store in Utah County where I can get some Baker’s Joy please let me know, or just bring me some. Pam makes a similar spray but I am told that lecithin can leave a sticky residue on my Bundt® pan.
For nearly a year we’ve had these crayon colorings on our fridge. They’re from a family home evening lesson about the creation story. They’ve been falling off the fridge lately. I wanted to share them because to me they’re an interesting example of the difference between Rebecca’s style and my own.
Ignore the subject and the outlines, of course, as they were drawn by a professional. Rebecca colored the plants, I did the animals.
Numbers dwindle at Hack Week on the 5th floor of Novell Provo
It’s been a good week. Reportedly last year’s Hack Week was more… enthusiastic. Hopefully this isn’t the last one. I got a handful of little things done and gave a shot at a couple of others.
Giver on Mono.Zeroconf
Giver, a simple file sharing application, was written against avahi-sharp for service discovery. This means it can only be used on a system that runs Avahi (which excludes SLED 10, Mac, and Windows). Using avahi-sharp can also be error-prone because you have to write your own event handlers and resolver thread. Aaron Bockover recently released a DNS-SD abstraction library called Mono.Zeroconf (which has actually been used for some time in Banshee). I ported Giver to Mono.Zeroconf. In theory this should mean that Giver can run on SLED 10 now and could be more easily ported to Mac and Windows. I’ll have a go at getting it to build on SLED 10 next week.
Tasky is a simple task management app (TODO list) for the Linux Desktop and probably this year’s best hack week project. Aside from being a pretty sweet app it has a back-end to synchronize to Remember The Milk. Let it be understood that I am not claiming a developer role. I did the packaging for it, put it in the openSUSE Build Service, and got it ready for submission to SuSE for inclusion in future distributions.
Wade Berrier has been working on an sqlite data-store for Tomboy (some of that work was already done). He got some criticism from a user who likes to look at his notes from the command-line while logged in remotely. I wrote a simple console application called tomboy-remote that can list and search your notes, show you a specific note, and allow you to safely edit a note. It should be trivial to add other features. Underneath it uses Tomboy’s D-Bus interface. This requires that Tomboy be running already but Boyd Timothy and I have talked about turning Tomboy into a D-Bus-activated service with a separate front-end.
Update: A short screencast is available.
Novell’s second ever Hack Week
February 11 – 15
I didn’t get to participate in last year’s Hack Week because I was working in another part of the company at the time. This year I may get interrupted occasionally to help get Mono 1.9 out the door on time. In any case I may try to hack up an XRandR 1.2 preference management service for GNOME. I’d like my laptop to automagically switch to my desktop monitor when it’s plugged in, and ask me what I’d like to do if it doesn’t already know.
Update: Simon Holm Thøgersen wrote me to point out that Søren Sandmann is already well into this effort.
I had another idea for a virtual bluetooth keyboard (so that I could type at my N800 from my desktop) but that’s not as interesting now that I’ve got an N810. Maybe I’ll work on specs for a geo-location extension to XMPP instead? Aw nuts, that’s already in progress too!
Today I am 30 years old. I remember when Rebecca turned 30 last year I was pretty excited to be married to an older woman. We get to be the same age for two months out of the year.
Rebecca went crazy with office decorations with the help of Wade, my co-worker and friend, and Devon, a security guard. It was pretty embarrassing.
Traditionally in my parent’s family we’d have a dinner on Sunday to celebrate a birthday but that tradition is giving way to a Saturday brunch that can stretch on into the night. I look forward to these events. Unfortunately I’m allergic to Amanda’s dog. I can usually go several hours at Jorgensen Manor before it gets to me.
In our own family we have a tradition of inviting my friends over for cake on the evening of my birthday. This year I had essentially called it off because I was too allergic to want to go pick up a cake (we had a coupon for Costco’s huge chocolate cake that expired Saturday) but apparently Rebecca had other plans. Wade showed up and said he was just in the area and thought he’d stop by. I believed him because I trust my friends. Then the Browns showed up, then Jim, then the Jobes’. I was delighted!
Cameron didn’t show up because he doesn’t check his messages. He even says so but really he could be more clear. We’ll make it up to him.
Thank you all for your thoughts, wishes, and presence.