These crazy people in Toronto...
Ok, so, I was telling one of my friends about this, and since it's surprisingly not a rare occurrence for me, he suggested I start a blog on the weird stuff that happens to me.
I was sitting on a little thing in around Dundas Square in downtown Toronto, looking at my handheld GPS, waiting for it to finish getting satellite signals. This was taking a bit, especially with the tall buildings all around. So, I'm sitting there, just looking at this thing that everybody takes to be a bulky cell phone, and a guy comes up and asks me for the time. I look at my watch, since it's more natural, and this guy seems surprised my "phone" didin't have a clock on it. I go on to explain to him that it's a GPS, not a phone, and so a conversation entails...
Seeing as he sat down about 1.5-2 feet from me, I couldn't get a good look at hsi clothes, but to give you an idea, he looked to be in his mid to late 30's, good quality sunglasses, beard-moustanc-thing, whatever it's called, baseball hat, and fairly well groomed, all things considered.
But basically, he starts talking to me, and starts thinking I must have a fair amoutn of money (read: he called me rich) just because I could afford a GPS and to do some geocaching. Somehow, it got to my mentioning that I was lucky to have gotten a job about a month or so before the economy crapped out, my mentioning that i'm working for a government--he suggested, based on personality--that I could be wokring for the city, but I never said which level I actually work for.
Anyways, I ask him what he does for a living, he says he doesn't have a job, and goes on to say that he's been living on the streets for 20 years (or was it 10? whatever...), says he knows all the streets of Toronto, and knows a lot of people all over the city. Told me that if anybody tries to hassle me, to tell them to take it up with "Old Man Scotia", saying earlier that his name was Scotia.
Weird conversation, all said and done, and I know I'm forgetting a few things here, but I'm just kinda writing as things come into my mind, which I think is how I'll keep this section going. No filtering, no editing, just my thgouths, straight from my head.
Weirdest thing is, I've had a similar incident on the subway (guy started talking to me while I was reading a textbook with headphones on) about 3 weeks ago, and another with some crazy lady about 3-4 months ago, and that's just this year. unfortuately, I don't get enough girls of my age coming up to me, and haven't had one do it in quite awhile. i'm beginning to miss it, despite it being rare to start with.
mnAutoLogin now on SourceForge
Last Updated on Tuesday, 06 January 2009 10:08
With the new year, comes a new home for my nmAutoLogin project. The project home can be found at its project page on SourceForge, although I don't have any releases for it yet. The actual releasing of the project proper is very much still "in development", and the files are sitting in SVN to download.
I still need to move the required Firefox extension to the project page as well, and make a downloadable package of it all, but it's coming together. I made an extension page on Mozilla Addons, but since I haven't finished the description yet, it can't be accessed yet, but hopefully this will be done soon.
Now, on a different note, WebSense at my new job seems to think that Seneca's Open Source Planet is a Phishing/scam website, and blocks it.
A little side project
Haven't been doing much on good ol' nmAutoLogin recently, but I plan to get back on that when my laptop gets back from repairs. The next major step is dropping the C, for reasons I will explain later, and replacing it with Python.
In the meantime, I just thought I'd go and mention a small freeware app I've thrown together. It's an instant messenger client and server written entirely in Java, with a nice little description page that can be found over here.
It's freeware, but not open source, mostly because releasing it as open source would be more of a hassle than its worth, especially since I don't see it becoming overly popular, with such things as AIM, MSN, and Pidgin flying around. Now, for a quick rundown of noteable features:
NetworkManager Automatic Web Authentication 0.1 (0.3) release
Some of this is just going to be a repeat from my pre-release post, but since this is the full release, I feel I should put it all here anyway.
Before I get too far into this, I will state this: this is a dual-numbered release. It is numbered 0.3 for my OSD600 course, but since this is the first release that is actually close to the original idea (0.1 and 0.2 were just working on DBus in XPCOM), it is officially numbered 0.1.
For those who are new to this blog, or just the idea of the NetworkManaher Automatic Web Authentication I've been working on (which I'm calling "nmAutoLogin" inside itself) , the idea is that several networks, such as colleges, workplaces, café hotspots, trains, airplanes, etc. require you to navigate to a webpage and login to there before you can access the internet, even outside of the browser. Having to do this manually can be a bit of a chore, or just an annoyance.
Would it not be nice if you could just have NetworkManager in Linux connect to a wireless network, then automatically have a browser like Firefox open this page and log in to it? That's what the idea here is: When NetworkManager connects to a wifi network that needs such a login to take place, a daemon will pick up on this connection, open Firefox if it's not open, navigate to the page, and log the user in, using Firefox's Password Manager to hold the username & password for this website.
The reasoning for using Firefox rather than one of several web browsing libraries available out there is relatively sound:
- Firefox has a Password Manager: Why would we want to store passwords in yet another place, when we can keep them centralized?
- Firefox is a GUI: If something goes wrong (wrong password, unable to connect, etc) the user should be able to see this, and be able to react to it
The basic structure of how this entire thing works: