My yearly post!

Wow, another year has gone by, and I haven't had much to say. I'm guessing that this is also something most people are experiencing right now, so I'm sure you understand.

What's new: we did another 20x2 Chicago show, and the videos are up on YouTube for your perusal. We had the very distinguished Peter Sagal as one of the readers this time out, so it was a very exciting evening.

The 20x2 timer was MIA for this event, mainly due to a rather large failure of the Arduino code that was connecting to the time server. See, the original idea for the 20x2 timer was a single server keeping the time, and the timer displays would be clients connecting via WiFi hotspot to the server. Unfortunately the libraries updated to an incompatible change a couple of weeks before the event, so I had to do some emergency code changes. But along with this, I started having issues with one of the LED controller boards, and ultimately I realized that the whole timer setup was just too complex to maintain.

So! There is a new redesigned 20x2 timer application, which reduces the number of "moving parts" (note: they don't actually move) to make the setup a lot easier to set up and maintain. I won't go into the tech aspects right now (still need to do full tests) but the code repositories is available at Codeberg.

Yes, Codeberg, and not Github. Something that's come up since I last posted is that Github, now a company owned by Microsoft, has introduced their Copilot feature, which allows users to get code snippets and hints from projects hosted on the service. This sounds great except for two things:

  • it doesn't take into account the licensing status of the code that it indexes;
  • and Copilot is a pay service, thereby going against the licenses of some of the code projects.

So for these reasons, I have decided to minimize my Github presence. I was notified about this issue by the Software Freedom Conservancy, an organization that keeps tabs on licensing issues for FOSS, and ask you to read their post about this issue on their site.

One of their most significant points in their argument is that git itself (git the command-line Linux tool, as opposed to Github, the hosted service) was actually created because the source control tools being used for Linux at the time were going to a pay model, and the parallels between that event and this one are hard to ignore. Since Codeberg has a large subset of Github features*, and it's actual open source, I chose that as the platform to move to. It's not going to be easy working without Github, but I don't want my code to be used in paid services without my consent, so that is the decision I needed to make. More on this later, probably.

*One of the biggest missing features is the lack of code search capabilities, due to the large amount of system resources required to implement the feature. Apparently there have been issues with people creating huge repositories on Codeberg just for free storage of media, and that's a considerable drain on a site that doesn't have resources that come with corporate backing. So for right now, if code searching is a must-have for you, don't switch to Codeberg.

This article is my 91st oldest. It is 559 words long