Sam Wilson's Website

March 2022

  1. The Dellers Cafe

    What a wild, wonderful, challenging and rewarding two years it’s been. We have met, and been supported by, so many amazing people and shared many tales over tasty coffees☕

    The time has come for us to move on from our little hidden oasis and take a break from coffee shop life for a while. It’s an exciting feeling for us and whilst not a decision made lightly it’s what’s right for our little family right now.

    Our last day will be this Friday the 11th so come by for one last hoorah. A massive shoutout must go to the superstar @emtangles, thankyou so much for everything, and thanks again for everyone’s support 🙏

    Lucy, Michael & Mae

  2. It’s Tuesday morning after a long weekend and I’m back at my desk. It was a long long weekend for me, because I got to go to Rottnest on Thursday and Friday. Such a relaxing place! There is some great calmness in the small rolling grassy hills, and it feels amazing that one can be sitting on Vlamingh lookout within an hour of leaving home, and have a 360° view of that lovely little island.

    I’ve been trying to update the OSM map of Rottnest (as usual) and it’s getting closer and closer to some sort of ‘done’. Not that it ever will be of course, because things change, and the usual thing with OpenStreetMap is that the more you map the more you see needs to be mapped. But at least things like the walking trail relations are getting closer. There’s also some contention with some features: someone is adding features from 1941, and marking them as current. For example, way 1004828012 is an oval marked landuse=military, but that’s not correct. Actually, it could barely be called an oval any more (it’s a reasonably flat area of sand dunes now, mostly re-vegetated with grasses). I’ll keep reaching out to the editor and talking about the best way to sort it out.

    Rottnest is a great place to walk, and my new tracking map (which soon will have ten years of my walking on it) is slowly filling up with blue dots. I feel slightly silly for putting lots of coding effort into tracking myself while at the same time objecting strongly to Google’s products that want to do the same, but at least the philosophical stance makes sense to me and it is rather fun seeing the map. The indieweb ideal is that one owns one’s own data, and in my case that means I also own a bespoke and slightly wonky system of storing it.

  3. I was writing some user documentation for RedirectManager just now, and wrote this sentence-and-a-bit:

    If you provide a name of an existing page to create as a redirect, an error message will be shown and no redirect will be created. Similarly, if you

    I was going to say something about how it’s not possible to create a redirect to a page that doesn’t exist. This isn’t a limitation of MediaWiki, but when I was writing the RedirectManager API I thought it would be good to prevent these “dangling redirects”. It wasn’t until I came to write the documentation that I realised the most obvious use-case: creating a redirect to a page that you’re in the process of creating! As in, while writing a new page, you want to add a shortcut to it — hardly a rare thing, I think.

    This is why I really like “documentation-driven development”, where one writes the docs first and pretends that they’re describing features that already exist. It really does help focus the mind on what’s required of the code, and (as in today’s example) highlights things that might otherwise be overlooked.

    So I’ll now go and change the API error to a warning, and not show it at all in the UI (although it might be worth having some indication that the target page doesn’t exist).