History always repeats itself and sometimes that's good. Here's a second chance to be part of it: tmdtc.com

Friday, 28 December 2007

Interactive Voice Response adventures

I already had a "funny" adventure with an IVR, where after goind 10 entries deep I got a ringing tone but no one answering.

Now, I got it again at the belgian Finance ministry. I called the number on their website and after choosing several options, I get a message "We wish you happy celebrations, you can contact us back from 4 january". I tried several path in the IVR and all end up with this message.

I wonder what's the cause of this config: the system that's not flexible enough, or the admin people who were too lazy?

Friday, 21 December 2007

A Profoss ad published

IT Professional has published the first ad for the virtualisation event in january. You can see it included in their newsletter as displayed here.

I really took great care to make the schedule interesting, and I hope lots of people will agree with me of course! :-)

Remember that if you want to help promote Profoss, there's some material available. Let me know when you use it, and I'll include you in the promoters list.

bulkmail.pl to ease the sending of season's greetings

So I wanted to mail season's greetings to quite some people. And I needed a solution with very simple requirements:
  • recipients to be stored in a text file
  • message to be stored in a text file
  • To: set to the recipient's mail
With these requirements I couldn't use the solution based on ActiveMailer I used for MyOwnDB.
But I didn't find a solution. My currently prefered language being Ruby, I looked for a Ruby library, and found Bulkmail, but it didn't work out of the box, and error logs were not very informational. And I really didn't want to loose time on that....

As the title implies, I finally settled on using Perl's Mail::Bulkmail to write a small script with this usage:

bulkmail.pl -f '"mailer name" ' \
-m path/to/message.txt \
-r "/path/to/recipients_list.txt" \
-s "subject of mail"

You can put all the recipients in one text file, one recipient per line:
"John Doe"

You can download the script, but before running it, edit the config file to set the correct domain used for the SMTP HELO!

It had been years I haven't touched to Perl, and this wasn't enough to remind me of Perl's syntax and concepts. But this has only confirmed what I knew: Perl has an unbelievably high number of libraries and that can make it the tool to use for a lot of applications! Wondering if I shouldn't refresh my Perl :-)

Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Open source virtualization group on LinkedIn

Tarry Singh has started a Group on LinkedIn for people interested in Open Source virtualisation. You can become a member here.

Tarry is a speaker at the next Profoss event, and even links to Profoss' website from the group. Cool!

Monday, 10 December 2007

Quand la politique dépasse la fiction

D'abord la réalité: un politicien compare la RTBF à Radio Mille Collines.

Et voici la fiction:

Lequel est le plus déjanté? Je ne suis pas sûr que Pirette aurait pu placer les mots de Leterme dans son sketch vieux de 2 ans sans se faire lyncher médiatiquement.

Enfin, au moins, avec Pirette, on peut rire le coeur léger. Pas sûr que ça soit le cas avec Leterme....

La question qui reste: quand va-t-on cesser cette politique d'une niveau équivalent aux disputes dans les cours de récréation de maternelle? Chaque fois que j'en parle à des francophones ou des flamands, on trouve ça ridicule. Et pourtant ça continue.... Il faut dire que c'est plus facile de bomber le torse sur des questions futiles que de s'occuper des vrais problèmes de sociétés.