If you’re missing a decent Objective-C DOM-based XML library for the iPhone, Google has a NSXMLDocument replacement available under the Apache license, as part of their Objective-C GData Library:
I’ve also had some success replacing missing classes using the Cocotron implementations — I’m using Cocotron’s NSPredicate implementation for selective receive in my message-passing actor [wikipedia] library.
Sun has approved merging the JRL-licensed BSD Java to the GPLv2+ClassPath OpenJDK-6. That means that all of the BSD Java changes, including the SoyLatte Mac OS X port, can now be sent to the OpenJDK project, and an official BSD porters group can be proposed:
The purpose of this letter is to confirm our understanding that you are providing to Sun under the terms of the Sun Contributor Agreement  the modifications that you made and are choosing to submit to code originally made available by Sun to you under the Sun Community Source License (“SCSL”) and subsequently modified by you pursuant to the Java Research License (“JRL”), where your modifications are expressed as diffs against Sun’s current OpenJDK-6 code base  (“Diffs”).
For the avoidance of doubt, this letter does not give you rights to distribute modifications made to code provided to you under SCSL or JRL, or the code originally provided by Sun pursuant thereto, in ways inconsistent with those licenses except specifically to provide the Diffs to Sun as stated above.
On behalf of Sun,
- Mark Reinhold, Principal Engineer
This week I spent a couple days reading through Geographic Information Systems and Science (Paul Longley, Michael Goodchild, David Maguire, David Rhind).
The book is an excellent introduction to GIS — covering everything from basic principals and vocabulary to statistical analysis and project planning. In this, I’d place the book up there with Data Modeling Essentials or Applied Cryptography in giving comprehensive treatment to a complex field.
I found the section on uncertainity to be the most interesting — in measuring the physical world, uncertainity is inevitable. There is no possible perfect representation, and uncertainity can not be eliminated. In GIS, it is your responsibility to account for these uncertanties in data, avoiding misrepresenting your certainity, and manage uncertainity introduced through aggregation of imperfect data.
The book reads like a text book, and can be incredibly tedious in explaining programming topics and business planning (in this, it’s not very different from Data Modelling Essentials). While this may detract from your reading enjoyment, the book remains an excellent introduction and reference source.
Has Ruby become the new rapid application development tool for common application developers? Ruby seems to be filling the traditional roles (and seeing the same sorts of developers) as tools like VisualBasic or REALBasic, especially in terms of rapid development of web applications (as opposed to desktop applications).
Doing some Googling, I’m not the first one to ask this question: Is Ruby the New VB?
What sort of shifts will the surrounding programming communities see with the ongoing influx of application developers traditionally constrained to the Windows universe?
If you’re interested in GIS, you’ve surely come across the OpenStreetMap project — they’re working to “provide free geographic data such as street maps to anyone who wants them.”
Only problem is their rather unexpected choice of license for their data: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license
This choice of licensing means that any data aggregated and distributed with theirs must also be licensed under the CC share-alike license — this includes any data your customers might wish to aggregate with map data. This is more or less a non-starter for any non-hobbiest project — commercial or otherwise. At what point does “aggregation” of factual data end? Does it ever?
The project has attempted to address this licensing quandry, but work in that direction is mired in a seemingly never-ending political morass: see this mailing list thread. There is a proposal to move to the “Open Database License”, which still applies the same “share-alike” restrictions to derivative databases (as opposed to, say, rendered maps). This improves the situation, but not by much — this licensing precludes the use in projects requiring aggregated data (ie, most of them) without share-alike licensing.
What amuses me the most is OpenStreetMap’s heavy reliance on public domain data — They’re happy to repackage it under more restrictive terms than it arrived.
Seems like there’s room for an ActuallyOpenStreetMaps project.