g0blin Bringing together art & technology


Ubuntu Preseed, VirtualBox and Hetzner EQ4 Virtual Machines

In February 2011, Hetzner.de added a funky bit of functionality to their hosting panel which made me rejoice - the ability to create a virtual MAC address for your extra IP addresses! As Hetzner are very restrictive in which NICs can use which IP addresses based on their MAC address, getting a Virtual Machine online in Bridged Mode was very hard, if not impossible.

This is a guide that will teach you not only how to create your own preseeded Ubuntu installation ISOs, but also how to get your Virtual Machines online with Hetzners EQ root server range.


Installing TortoiseHG 2.0 under Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick)

On the 1st of March 2011 version 2.0 of TortoiseHG was released - and the people rejoiced. 2.0 features a much-refined interface allowing the user to perform most of the common tasks from a single dialog, instead of having to switch between a swathe of different dialogs. Unfortunately this new version is not available as a package under the Ubuntu repositories yet, but in this post you will find out how to install TortoiseHG 2.0 under Ubuntu 10.10.


MCPipe, Minecraft bridge

As an experiment, I decided to see if I could put together an intermediary for an indy-game that has been growing in popularity recently - Minecraft. This intermediary would act as a bridge between the Server and Client, extracting data from the packets and passing them on.


Breaking out of subprocess

While creating a wrapper for the Mincraft server, I came across a small problem. In order to execute the JAR file from within the Python script I needed to fire it up as a subprocess. Unfortunately, Python kills off subprocesses automatically before closing itself (I'm not sure if this is infact the default behaviour of Python or a behaviour caused by using the CherryPy library). This would not do - Power to the Process!


Reading data from Twitters API stream

Thanks to Twitters Stream API, retrieving large sets of live and real data to analyze in a social context is now very easy to accomplish. At our disposal we have a never-ending stream of Tweets from people all around the globe. In this article you will learn how to tap into this stream using the PHP scripting language.


Extracting and making use of ANEW tables

The ANEW (Affective Norms for English Words) is a dataset that puts a valence, or mood to words. Using this (all be it from 1999) data, we can derive the mood of a body of text, such as a Tweet - however first things first, lets get the data into a usable form and learn how we can make use of it.


Twitter location filtering

During my daily visit to NewScientist, I came across an article detailing a researchers efforts to map the mood of the USA, based on data available through the Twitter Stream API. The method of determining the mood I will go into in another article - however for those who are interested you should look into Affective Norms for English Words - the aim of this article is to make available to us an easy to way to determine the bounding boxes for the locations filtering parameters required to filter the Twitter Stream by location, instead of keywords.