I have an ObjC project that I compiled under Cygwin using the trunk GCC. I’m linking against a rare .dll that I could only find in my Eclipse download as its no longer supported. The whole thing powers my web service. It works fine on my 32 bit XP box but crashes on my 64 bit Vista server when I call it from a Linux VM running on the same box. However, if I run it on my other 64bit Vista server which has an Itanium processor, then it will work but slows down over time due to a known memory leak in the IIS server that front-ends it. Does this sound like you? Do you often find yourself in the middle of a smorgasbord of ELF files, incompatible IDE plugins that sometimes work well enough on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and other layered technologies that only you seem to understand? How does that happen? Hi, I’m Cliff. You’re here because your VPN client conflicts with a video driver running on your modified Debian kernel that supports both Ubuntu and Lenny binaries. I’m here because it’s not your fault. Don’t most people hack undocumented config files just prior to building a Linux distro to power the mission critical server that they plan to release just prior to taking vacation. How were you supposed to know that the “#IF DEF” you hand authored to work around a segmentation fault would cause a kernel panic at peak time?
Here at “Can’t see nothing but the source” we discuss a lot of diverse technologies. I’m no stranger to loading something as proprietary as the RIM compiler directly on Mac hardware under OS X. I’ve also tried my hand at dynamically defining Ant tasks using the Ant-Maven jar under a Groovy/Gant build launched from a Maven pom invoked from a custom GMaven plug-in. My point here is that I’m crazy. I’m crazy and you’re stoopid for following me. Now I’d normally refrain from insulting my audience especially since I only have 3 audience people that visit regularly, but C’mon son! I’ve been at this for years now and not once has anybody posted a comment like, “Dude, the OS X platform was like, not made for running AS/400 binaries!” Instead, my audience agrees with most of the nonsense I post. No matter how hard I try to launch VMWare on my Blackberry, nobody stands up and says, “Stobbit you clown! There’s only 1MB of free memory on that thing!”
I’ve come to this realization today while I almost figured out how to use BZR to hook IntelliJ up to an svn repo to work around the Kerberos issue that causes SVNKit to give up the ghost. I said, “gosh, nobody does this sort of stuff! Why not?” You know that feeling you get when you finally realize that everyone else on the planet wears a T-shirt under a turtleneck? (And I promised I would never get personal on my site!) Well that’s how I feel. Don’t act like it’s just me! A whole lot of you probably go through this every evening! Dare to be different!
So this is what we’re gonna do. I want you, yes you, to think back. Remember the craziest combination or kludge of software you ever assembled. Remember how hard you toiled to get two or more totally opposite software packages to pretend like they were one. Re-live the feeling of superiority you experienced when it finally, almost, kinda worked, sorta? After you summon those old thoughts list them below. Include various detail like, how heavy was the font use to list said accomplishment on your resume? How many other people actually cared or prevented you from connecting your dishwasher to your leaf blower? Did the lights go dim when you ran the four billion record full outer join query that was so necessary to add the cost column from the first four records on your screen? Sure you could have copy/pasted to Excel or even launched the calculator to get the same number, but who does that when there’s obviously production servers available that were hand crafted for this particular task? How about that OCR routine you called from VBScript to parse the values from the MS Access screen shot? The one where you took the actual screen shot after using OLE DB to connect to the remote Oracle server then later used the parsed numbers to automate an SQL stored procedure update to the same server… a stored procedure that you wrote. Whatever it is, go ahead and embarass yourself below.