Roy Tang

roytang.net

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

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2020 December

  • Perfect Strangers

    While digging through some old stuff recently I found a copy of the late 80s/early 90s US sitcom Perfect Strangers and decided to binge through all 8 seasons of it (really more like 6 and a half, since seasons 1 and 8 were an abridged 6 episodes each). I grew up watching this series, on live tv even, before we had cable or Netflix or anything like that. During the binge-watch I remember a good number of the episodes from the first season all the way up to the end of season 7, which implies almost all of it was

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    Posted by under blog at #tv

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  • Dress Codes

    A while back someone I know went from working as a developer to working at a senior/management type position at a bank, and that new job came with the corresponding dress code, which meant he was now going to work in long sleeves or barongs. That kind of thing is not for me - back when I still considered a regular office job, one of the fastest ways to get me to run away from an "opportunity" would be an overly stringent and/or formal dress code. I was reminded of this because a few days ago, I read an article

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  • Ephemeral Echoes

    Last week, Twitter added Fleets, their own version of stories (short-lived posts). As could be expected, it's not something I can relate to. I did post one (saying "This is dumb.") just to see what the interface was like, but that's it. I thought about writing a blog post about how I dislike this sort of ephemeral social media, but it turns out that something I'd already written about before. Things don't change I guess, and they just come around. I still can't relate to this kind of thing, since I really prefer having a record of things I've posted

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    Posted by under blog at #tech-life

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  • Game Review: Super Mario Odyssey

    Posted by under blog at #gaming #nintendoswitch

    Also on: mastodon twitter / 997 words

  • Rhythm of War is book four in Sanderson's epic fantasy Stormlight Archive series. Goodreads tells me I read the prior book Oathbringer back in Nov 2017, but didn't bother writing a review, so I had to make sure I'd write one now. The book's launch day kind of caught me a bit unexpectedly so I didn't bother doing a re-read of the previous three books. Which given an epic fantasy series of this scope might have been a mistake, but watch me do it again for book five. No review meant while reading every so often I'd stop and be

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2020 November

  • We Shouldn't Need Heroes

    It's National Heroes Day over here, so I've been thinking about heroics. In software development, Heroic Programming can have a negative connotation: HeroicProgramming is often the only course of action left when poor planning, insufficient funds, and impractical schedules leave a project stranded and unlikely to complete successfully. I guess it's not just in software development either. Many times heroics are an indicator of failed systems. Bonifacio and other Philippine heroes were needed because Spanish colonialism had failed the Filipino people, necessitating a revolution. In this pandemic, we hail the medical workers and other frontliners as heroes for their sacrifices

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  • Weeknotes 2020-11-29

    December is almost upon us! I had an opportunity last week to take on some additional work, but on further reflection, I thought I'd pass on it. I am in general, averse to working during the Christmas season (that is to say, more so than during the entire year in general). Even back when I was working full-time, I'd prefer taking most of my leaves during December. It's really a result of the terrible traffic in Metro Manila, which gets significantly worse during Christmas season, a trauma that lingers even when I'm home all the time. The past week went

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  • This week felt weird. It kind of went by quickly for me, but it doesn't feel like anything important really happened. Its kind of like those moments in-between other events, where you're just coasting along and waiting for the more significant things to happen. My country is still recovering from the storms of the past few weeks, Trump is still flailing around trying to overturn democracy, and our own president is still insecure when someone gets more attention than him. These moments feel fleeting, but they're a pretty good time for some self-reflection. I probably need a bit more of

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  • Weeknotes 2020-11-15 Winds and Rain

    Weather this past week was very bad for those of us in Metro Manila (and many other places in Luzon). Howling winds and strong rains dominated for 2-3 days of the week due to typhoon Ulysses. This typhoon wasn't as strong as Rolly a couple of weeks ago, but it seems that it brought a lot more rains, causing flooding and loss of power in a whole lot of places. Metro Manila was hit quite badly, even drawing comparisons to Ondoy back in 2009. Even up to today I'm still reading about a ton of people who need assistance, relief

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  • The World: Somehow the week seemed to go by both quickly and agonizingly slowly, mostly because of the US presidential elections held this week. Slowly because after the initial burst of results on Tuesday night (US time), the remaining states' results trickled in very slowly. Quickly because much time was spent doomscrolling and refreshing election-related updates. I think the world collectively breathed a sigh of relief this weekend as the US networks finally called the race for former VP and now president-elect Joe Biden. Celebrations on the streets in many cities in the US, notably New York and Philadelphia. Trump

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  • I recently did a server migration since I moved to new hosting, The move was from managed/shared hosting to a VPS, these are some notes I took during the process, which I figure might be helpful if I ever tried to do this again. (And maybe someone else finds it helpful too). Links and references to helpeful resources are included. Setting up a webserver and WSGI container I already knew I wanted to use Nginx (managed hosting on the old server always used Apache), that meant needing to choose a WSGI container for the Django apps. The choices were either

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  • Now: Stormy weekend here in Manila. Supposedly the "strongest storm of 2020" so far, typhoon Rolly made landfall earlier today and is currently battering many of the provinces south of Metro Manila. Storm signals are as high as number 5. As of this writing, weather is currently cold and nippy but not particularly rainy where I am. We expect stronger winds and rain to hit us as evening approaches as well. On top of everything, a second typhoon has entered the PH area of responsibility and is expected to affect us over the next couple of days as well. If

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2020 October

  • Site Migration from Hugo to Django

    Leaving Hugo It's been a bit under two years since I migrated the site from Wordpress to Hugo. As discussed in this post one year ago, I was very happy with the general workflow of managing posts through markdown files in git, but had big problems with the Hugo build time, largely a consequence of my social media archiving. At that time, I didn't want to invest effort into migrating to a different backend, but the problem has only gotten incrementally worse since then, so I decided to take the jump and started working on it last month. Migration goals

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  • Weeknotes 2020-10-25

    Server migration update: I had encountered some trouble with the Travis-CI -based Hugo build generating this here website last week. Luckily, most of the migration work to the new backend was already done, so I went ahead and switched over the servers. So this site is no longer plain-old deployed HTML, but rather powered by a Django backend. The site should be mostly the same, though I did take the opportunity to move some stuff around. There's probably some bugs floating around, and maybe some secrets even. Probably need a longer blog post writing about the migration itself, though it

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    Posted by under blog at #weeknotes #changelog

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  • Game Review: Super Mario 3d All-stars

    So I got a Nintendo Switch last month. One of the first games I had gotten for the system was the recently released Super Mario 3d All-Stars. I had really been wanting to play Super Mario Odyssey instead, but my brother had a copy of that game that I could borrow later, so I decided to get 3dAS first, as I had never really played the 3 games on the collection. I've mostly played the 2d Mario games prior to this, with the exception of 3d Land (3DS) and 3d World (WiiU), although both of those games were closer in

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  • Weeknotes 2020-10-18

    So my current webhost finally decided to give me a deadline, the long and short of it is that my new server needs to be ready by December the 9th, giving me a bit under a month to get things in order. I'm already in the middle of setting up the new server, so I think I'll be ready by early November anyway. Most of the code to run the new blog is also mostly ready (who knows how many bugs there are though!) I am (re-)learning a lot about server setups though, so hopefully I'll have quite a few

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  • Weeknotes 2020-10-11

    The world continues to be terrible. The PH government wants people to get back to work and everything to spur the economy (with health precautions and everything). A lot of people have no choice, but I'm fortunate enough to not have to go out there yet, and I'm sure people like me will still hold back. This all would have been a lot easier if the government had gotten control of this pandemic early on but it is what it is. Still not writing blog posts apparently. I have a lot of thoughts swirling in my head, I'm sure they'll

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  • In the news this week: Donald Trump, who for some reason is still the US president, has tested positive for Covid19, adding even more chaos and uncertainty to the US election season. The rest of the world has no choice but to pay attention, given how much US politics affects the rest of us The Philippines is now #20 worldwide in total Covid cases, yay! Yay? Some drama about the PH congress leadership? IDK, whatever man. Annoyingly, I've not been doing any blog posts other than these weeknotes during the past few weeks. It is what it is though. I

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2020 September

  • Weeknotes 2020-09-27

    October is imminent! There are two distractions I'm looking forward to in the coming month. The first one is Inktober, which I've been doing since 2016. Basically it's just to do 30 ink drawings in October, one per day. There are some official prompts, which I'll probably follow. I haven't really done any serious sketching in a while, maybe this will help me get back into the groove. The second one is Hacktoberfest! Basically it's an event where you have to submitted some number of GitHub PRs in October, and there's some swag for people who finished. I last participated

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  • Weeknotes 2020-09-20

    It's hard to imagine this is already the 3rd week of September, it feels like the month is passing by quickly, although I haven't been particularly busy recently. I did do some paid work this past week; not a lot, just filling in to provide some emergency support/consultation. I guess the reason it feels like the week passed by quickly is that I started a new side project (like many programmers, I am afflicted by the curse of wanting to start too many side projects). This one will probably get finished: I'm writing a Django based server for this website.

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