johnk's blog

WS Printing from HP Printers - more blues...

I had a pretty good experience getting a Canon WiFi photo printer installed via WS Printing, the feature in Windows that allows printer sharing without a Windows computer sharing the printer.

AirPrint Support (Sucks)

This article is now obsolete. See comments.

We've got a bunch of iPhones and one iPad user in the office, and they've wanted to print a few times. It seemed useful, so I read up about AirPrint, and we set up CUPS to serve AirPrint and send output to some HP printers (this is via a Linux server). The whole setup was too complex, so I wanted to get an office printer that supported AirPrint. It turned out that support for AirPrint sucks.

Long Delay in Receiving Email from Gmail

A party trying to send me an email via gmail got this error:

From: Mail Delivery Subsystem 
Date: Sat, Aug 11, 2012 at 12:50 PM

Templating with DOM

DOMTemplate is a new templating system that doesn't use any markup.

No More "Arabic" Numbers: American Numbers from Now Onward

I've been reading about the War on Terror and the potentially pernicious effects of Islam on western civilization and America, and have come to agree that we must purge our culture of this foreign inf

A Short Guide to Some Asian Brands, like LG, Samsung, ASUS, Acer, Lenovo

When people go to buy computers or other electronics, they end up encountering some Asian brands that are unfamiliar.

Information Technology Workers: an IT Labor Union?

If you have reached this page through a search engine, and are interested in IT organizations, please check out Bright Future Jobs. Their URL is

This is a short list of links to groups that organize or try to organize programmer labor unions and other computer-based worker unions, as well as lobby organizations. This document is undergoing constant revision.

Page News
I just found out about CyberUnions a podcast and community about FOSS and labor.

Printing Blues

What I learned today....

Back when there were only two types of printers, parallel and serial, it was a lot easier. But even then, there was this annoying issue of incompatible interfaces. Today, the three dominant interfaces are ethernet, wifi, and usb, which takes over the role played by parallel cord interfaces.

PHP DOM to Implement a Form Class with Pure HTML Templates

So, I had this painful gout attack today and was mostly bedridden. It sucked. But I got some reading done, which was nice. My mind wandered and came up with this idea (and a headache).

Languages, IMC Keywords, Zend Framework, and Bad Data (random caffeinated thoughts)

I'm getting back to setting up Drupal for LA IMC, but keep hitting little walls. I've decided I definitely want to extract proper nouns and keywords from the articles.

What is a Cat5 HDMI Extender?

More to the point, what the hell is a cat-5 HDMI extender?

File Naming Anti-Pattern

Click this link to see why you should not name your PHP files *.inc.

I still see people naming their files "". The problem with doing that is the server won't interpret .inc files as PHP files. By default it treats them as text. So if you have your database password in a file named, it might accidentally get exposed.

Managing and Displaying External Links in WordPress

I've been having a helluva time figuring out how to manage and display a list of links in WordPress. The program has a links feature, but it's aimed at managing the list of links in the sidebar.

Roff, Groff, and the Roots of Computer Typesetting

Today we take it for granted that computers can set type, but from the 60s to the 80s, most computers used either teletypes or character-based screens. The Xerox Star and Apple Lisa and Apple Macs, and PostScript changed this, but before them, typesetting was done using weird command languages that would send pages to special typesetters. The most well known setup was troff, which lives on in groff and in Solaris. The troff system used a computer typesetter called a CAT, and it wasn't a bitmap laser printer. It has these fonts that were spools of film that were photographs of letters. The font sizes were created by projecting the image of the letter onto the page at different sizes. I believe the rest of the process was like a photocopier - the toner goes on, and then is transferred to the paper, and fused.

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