work in progress…

Some status update: Moving jwchat.org’s services from one host to another appears to be a lot more time intense as I first thought. Currently I’m about to import roster data to the new mysql db which seems to take hours. Finally I managed to get the websites back in partial but there’s still a lot to do. SVN and TRAC still don’t work. SSL is b0rked and of course ejabberd still isn’t available. I hope to get the core jabber service back up within some hours.

new server for jwchat.org

I’ve just ordered a new server for jwchat.org as the old machine is running out of resources. As of this I’ll be moving services from one host to the new one within the next days so you might notice short periods of service downtimes. I’ll keep you up2date on this as soon as possible.

today: radio talk on openmicroblogging (in german)

Today I’ll be giving an interview to radio fsk, hamburg. The topic is about twitter and openmicroblogging. They’ll have Cem Basman from WhisperN News and Media (brokerz) at face and I’ll join later on to talk about the role of XMPP in the field of openmicroblogging. The live broadcast calls itself Nerdalert and will start at 17:00h CEST. And of course there is also a livestream available.

twitterspy – a jabber/xmpp gateway to twitter

Today I decided to give twitterspy a try in order to get rid of a dedicated twitter client that wastes space and resources on my desktop.

Twitterspy is a jabber bot that sits in your roster and forwards messages to twitter back and forth.

As it’s still missing some helpful documentation on howto setup such a service on your own I decided to write a short tutorial documenting the steps it took me to get it up and runninng.

Note: If you only want to use the service you don’t have to do this. You can use the public address ‘twitterspy@jabber.org‘ which is operated by the author of the software. In order to get started send ‘help’ to this address. Of course you should be aware of the fact that you’d have to provide your twitter login credentials to the bot in order to do anything useful with it. That said, I’ll continue with my guide.

I’m using Debian ‘etch’ 4.0r4 as host operating system. This guide should be applicable to almost any other Un*x/Linux system though.

First I downloaded a copy of twitterspy by

$ git clone git://github.com/dustin/twitterspy.git

(You need to have git installed for this work of course).

Note: The code there didn’t work for me. I had to apply a small fix, that’s why I’ve created a fork available at http://github.com/sstrigler/twitterspy/tree/master

Update: The fix has been backported to the original tree, so no need to use my fork.

Addtional software packages I had to install:

* ruby
* ruby1.8-dev (includes mkmf which was needed for building the json gem)
* rubygems
* libxmpp4r-ruby

Gems (quite a lot):

* summize (see below)
* json
* htmlentities
* dm-core (this took some time due to heavy dependencies)
* dm-aggregates
* do_sqlite3 (see below)
* twitter
* rake
* hoe
* launchy

In order to get do_sqlite3 working I had to install sqlite3 from source first.

Except for ‘summize’ I was able to install them using gem like

$ gem install json

summize is available at http://github.com/dustin/ruby-summize/tree/master.

Download using git:

$ git clone git://github.com/dustin/ruby-summize.git

I had to build my own gem with

$ cd ruby-summzie
$ gem build ruby-summize.gemspec
$ sudo gem install ruby-summize-0.3.gem

As a last step I coppied twitterspy.yml.sample to twitterspy.yml and edited it to suit my needs. Then I started with

$ ./twitterspy.start

You can watch messages and errors fly by at twitterspy.log. So if things don’t seem to work as they should have a look at there.

If you see strange errors starting with

No connection to server/usr/lib/ruby/gems/1.8/gems/activesupport-2.1.1/lib/active_support/vendor/memcache-client-1.5.0/memcache.rb:663:in `request_setup'

consider installing a memcache daemon.

And as a last note: Of course twitterspy is available at jwchat.org too now. It’s address is twitter@jwchat.org. Feel free to use it!

last steps towards jwchat-1.0 (and thoughts about what’s beyond)

Currently I’m preparing for the long awaited release of JWChat v1.0. I haven’t been working on it for a long time now (2-3 years) and all I want to do is to fix some remaining issues, do some compatibility tests and that’s it. So if you know of some things you think they should urgently make into the v1.0 release please let me know.
My plans are to discontinue development on JWChat’s code basis after the release. As so many other projects JWChat has evolved out of some initial proof of concept and as such the code is merely utterly ugly. What I’d like to see is a framework for building web enabled (aka AJAX), XMPP driven chats that is really easy to integrate into existing projects. Which is easy to adopt and customize. I’m thinking of something built on top of dojo(?) and jsjac(?) with an MVC driven approach that let’s you define which parts to (re)use wihtin your own app and let’s you customize those that aren’t exactly the way you like it. Actually I’ve already started with it but that’s not ready for prime time. Hope there’s enough spare time for it soon 😉

JWChat’s homepage moved

Another short note: Just finished moving all the content previously hosted at http://jwchat.sourceforge.net to this blog as http://blog.jwchat.org/jwchat/. Hope this will make it easier for me to maintain content and keep you up2date.

blog moved – wordpress downgrade considered harmful

Today I moved my blog away from IN-Berlin e.V. to my own server as I got frustrated by all those wordpress upgrades necessary lately. So maybe you might want to update your bookmarks. The new location is http://blog.jwchat.org.

On my private server I’m hosting debian’s default wordpress package which should get security updates automatically, thus I’m fine.
Unfortunately I had been using WordPress as of version 2.3.3 while this one is still at 2.0.x and that makes importing my old data a pain in the ass. I’ve written a small perl script which maybe could be of help for you too if you should need a downgrade of wordpress too (I guess it should work with wordpress 2.5.x, 2.6.x also):
wp_downgrade_2.3.x_to_2.0.x.pl

JabberHTTPBind 1.1.1

A quick one: Just uploaded JabberHTTPBind 1.1.1. It contains a little fix for a problem with connections using DNS SRV records (like connecting to gmail.com).

jwchat.org updated to fix problems with FF3

Just had an update of jwchat.org to the latest version from CVS. Problems with Firefox3 not working correctly should be gone now. Please make reports here if you’re still discovering any issues!

Chatbot repositories moved

As code.mabber.com has gone down some time ago I grabbed a dump of chatbot‘s SVN repository lately and uploaded it into my own subversion service. So please if you’re interested into chatbot development (or maybe even usage :D) relocate your repository to

http://svn.jwchat.org/chatbot/trunk

UPDATE:
Chatbot is now being hosted at http://github.com/sstrigler/chatbot/tree/master

That’s the new home of chatbot’s code. Maybe some day I’ll go mad and crazy and setup a trac again. But don’t count on it.