An old piece of programming which may be useful to some

This is a java program that used to display gnome and KDE menus on Linux desktops.  It was designed to be useful with very lightweight windows managers like icewm, which didn’t have menus by default.  It could be useful with unity with the right environment variables set.

If you find this and think it might be useful send me a message.


I actually wrote it to understand  It is not great java.

Go activity

With the invitation to go to the Korean tournament this year, it is time to resurrect my interest in go.  I don’t expect to get back to my best, but I need to make a decent account of myself.

So I will take part in the Australia-New Zealand online tournament starting this week.

My first game is tonight against TriDat Tran from Australia.

UPDATE: In spite of being rusty I managed a win.  A new opponent will be assigned tomorrow (Sunday 3 July).

Building a server

This blog is to capture some of the challenges in building a new home server.  The server is to act as the DMZ and firewalls for the home network.  I have a cable modem with a fixed IP (IP4) address that the new server plugs into.  All my home computing equipment, computers, WIFI router, network printer etc plug into a network switch at the back.

The server acts as

  • Firewall external and internal
  • DNS server (it was to serve as authority for my domains but Vodafone seems to block UDP DNS queries from outside it’s network)
  • Router
  • LAMP stack (Apache2 plus MySQL plus PHP/Perl running on Linux)
  • Email server (SMTP + POP3/IMAP)

Getting these set up is not so difficult but I decided to try using ISPConfig3 to manage them.  ISPConfig This is a tool that makes it look like you are running an ISP and you can easily provision web sites, and email accounts.  It has some functionality that I don’t need and some features don’t quite work as intended, but in general it makes it easier to manage everything for multiple users.

I also installed wordpress for this blog and for all the users.  The ungrateful people aren’t rushing to create content.


Toastmasters is a system to help learn public speaking.

I have been going to 2 groups as I split my time between Wellington and Christchurch

In Wellington I go to Mid City group on Thursdays

In Christchurch I go to Avon group on Tuesdays

and I have also been to a group in Petone which meets once a month on Friday

I think I have become more confident in general and better able to construct and deliver a speech/presentation that people want to listen to.

Redo site

After a small computer disaster, I have had to restart my blog. That means the dates will all be wrong. I could reclaim the database but it seems easier to just put up with wrong dates.