Eric D. Schabell: June 2007

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Final ride in Normandy, France!

Yes, all good things must come to an end. Soon to be back to flat cycling in the Netherlands, but first my last ride.

I cycled from Isigny-Sur-Mer, through Grandcamp-Maisy along the beach, climbed out of that village past Pointe du Hoc, taking a big climb from the US Cemetery (needed my second gear to get up the last bit, was very steep), down along Omaha beach and climbing up past the museum to finish at Port-en-Bassin.

Total ride was 40 km and we ate a huge seafood dinner with the whole family (11 oyster starter, can you imagine?) before hanging the bike on the car to drive home.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Utah beach ride!

Today I toured up north, through Carentan, Dead Man's Corner, and up to Utah Beach. Lots of great climbing on the way and speeds of 36-38 km/hour on the long stretches of road for a total of 56km's. Legs seem to be adjusting to the climbing, not tired after the ride at all.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Cycling to Omaha Beach!

My second ride in France. I covered 57 km from our house, via La Cambe to view the German cemetery (slide show). It has over 21300 German soldiers, many unknown.

From there I went on through the country side down towards the coast through one lane villages like Asnieres where I stumbled across a memorial in a field from a P40 crash site from the D-Day invasion.

I went down along Omaha Beach for another look at the memorial site:

From there it was up a steep climb at Verville-Sur-Mer, down along the coast at Grandcamp-Maisy and home to Isigny-Sur-Mer.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Viewing the Utah beach landing routes in Normandy, France

We toured through the northern part of Normandy today. From Isigny-Sur-Mer we headed through Carentan where some of the heaviest fighting went on. We stopped at Dead Man's Corner and spent some time in Sainte-Mere-Englise:

We ended at the famous WWII landing site of Utah Beach. A few photo's give you an impression:

Here is a nice video view of what you see when just exiting the waters onto the beach:

Monday, June 18, 2007

Omaha beach landing birds-eye-view

Toured the famous WWII D-Day landing site of Omaha Beach. Here is a slide show and a video impression of the view the soldiers had upon reaching dry beach:

After taking a look around, we happened upon a flag raising with the Mayor and an Omaha veteran with a group of US school children, very moving.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

First ride in France!

My first ride through France is in Normandy on Fathers Day. I took a short exploration ride up to Pointe du Hoc and back to Isigny-Sur-Mer, getting caught in the rain on the way home. Welcome to the quickly changing weather in Normandy! Total ride was 34 km's and I walked around a bit at the battle site.

Friday, June 15, 2007

AbTLinux - caching package installs now!

Having not put time and/or energy into my AbTLinux project lately I decided to push for at implementing one of the failing unit tests (only 27 to go!).

I choose caching a package, which is in the AbTLogManager and runs now after a successful package installation. You can see the coding progress on our Trac (if you get some Trac error message, just hit refresh until it goes away).

Only 26 failing unit tests to go!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Mocking up packages in AbTLinux with FlexMock

I was looking for a solution to mocking up objects for my Ruby project Unit Tests and came across the FlexMock project.

I have been looking for something simple that would allow objects, in my case software packages, to be easily tested without all the overhead of actually running through downloads, configuring, building and installing a real package. The obvious solution is to mock up the package object and test that. FlexMock provides a rather extensive tool set for mocking up my package objects.

As of yet I have not exactly decided where and how to integrate this, but I will. For now I have included the library into the code base and will get back to this soon.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Gmail Rolls Out PowerPoint Preview

Not that I am a big fan or user of PowerPoint, but should some DoDo send me one I am now able to view them painlessly as a slideshow. For more information:

"Interesting: Google rolled out their slideshow feature for Gmail (some of you were already getting this as experiment for a while). What happens is that whenever someone sends you a PowerPoint attachment, you can instantly open it in a new browser window by clicking “view as slideshow” to then go through the pages." [ more...]

AbTLinux wiki setup on Sourceforge

With the announcement of Sourceforge hosting support of project wikis, AbTLinux will now be hosting it's within it's Sourceforge project space.

I have migrated all old pages over to the new location, set security to prevent spamming and encourage both developers and eventual interested persons to take a look.

To edit the wiki you need to be a project member, which entails getting a sourceforge user account and then requesting addition to the About Time Linux project.

The original announcement for those interested:

SourceForge, Inc. (NASDAQ: LNUX) today said it has teamed-up with Wikispaces to integrate wikis directly into, the world's largest repository of open source software. The addition of wiki functionality into gives the community a simpler and more efficient tool to mass-author the documentation and communication necessary to support its open source projects.

"Open source succeeds because of community," said Michael Rudolph, vice president and general manager, "Adding the collaborative power of wikis into what is already a vibrant community will create a better way for the members of to maintain their projects. Wikispaces gives us the ability to support the high volume of projects on the site and bring greater value to the open source community." [ more...]

Portland Velo riding club

Cycling in Portland, Oregon is something I have not ever really done much of. When I was first taking up the sport in 1988 I was stationed in California (USMC) so only rode in the dessert.

After putting the bike away for some years due to travel and work constraints, I picked up a new one and started again last year here in the Netherlands. I have since rode in Belgium and soon will be doing some riding in France (Normandy).

Looking for some contact points for my next trip home I came across this club in Portland that does not mind if guest riders tag along, Portland Velo. Looks like a well organized group with a good ride calendar that has a bit of everything for each level of rider.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Notifier for Google Reader

Google Reader Watcher is a Firefox extension that monitors your feeds from Google Reader and shows alerts when there's something new to read. The extension shows the number of unread posts in the status bar (this number is only an approximation, because Google Reader doesn't count past 100 for an individual feed). If you hover over the icon [ more...]

Friday, June 8, 2007

Another ride to work yesterday!

I did a run to work on the bike again, this time the wind was a bit much on the way to work so after 26 km's I just jumped a train for the rest of the way.

The return trip was nice and warm (28 degrees) and a bit of a tail wind so was able to keep the speed up around 35 km/hr and was home in 90 minutes for a total ride of 83 km.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Integrating Digg tools into your Blog

I was messing around with trying to get a pretty embedded Digg button on my Blog and found this integration manual with all the button options explained with examples.

I added it to my Blogger template as the following code (results are on my site by each posted article):

<!-- digg button -->
<div style="float:left; margin-left:10px;">

<script type="text/javascript">
digg_url = "<data:post.url/>";
digg_bgcolor = "lightyellow";
digg_skin = "compact";
digg_title = "<data:post.title/>";


<script src="" type="text/javascript"/>
<!-- end digg button -->

* The only option missing (I don't use it) is:
digg_bodytext = "<data:post.body/>";

Searching for PFC Henry L. Hooper

I have often visited the American Memorial Cemetery Margraten. I can not even begin to describe to you the feeling you get when you approach such a field of crosses, more than 8000 of them... I have adopted a grave and have some background information posted here on PFC Henry L. Hooper but would like to make a call for help.

Full details on his story as far as I have them can be found on the PFC Henry L. Hooper page.

Do you know anything about this person, his history, his family or just want to leave some information, please submit a comment here.

Free online Linux courses (slideshow's available)

I have redone the presentation of these courses and due to site migration I thought the best way to let everyone know how to find them again was to push them here. As previously stated, these are released under GFDL, viewable now in online slideshows (Linux First Steps, Linux on Apache and Linux Networking).

See the Linux courses page.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Moved to Blogger

I have moved my site over to Blogger this last week.

This means many of my old links are no longer working and that trackbacks and pingbacks need to be updated. Is there a way to do notify the link owners?

I am also working on subscriber migration to provide email updates when posting. Let me know if you notice broken links or any other such problems?