Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been spreading my community wings a bit further than Linux and Birmingham.
It was a very detailed technical talk given by Darren and Andrew about setting up your own DNS server but after a brief overview of the standard and how it came about, the bulk of the talk was looking at all the possible options for resource records.
Unfortunately we ran out of time to actually see how the resource records are put together and how you configure named to read them. This will be the topic of the next meeting on 20th March which I hope to attend.
In hindsight it would have been better I believe to look at the most simple resource records say the SOA and A types and then show how to configure a system, then go back and look at more complex resource records.
That said the talk was very authoratative and detailed and it’s a topic I’ve been peripherally involved in and always felt where a more detailed knowledge would be very useful.
Python West Midlands User Group
On Saturday 24th I attended my first and in fact the first technical meeting of the Python West Midlands User Group (PUG) PyWM. This is a relatively new group started by a couple of the leading lights of the SBLUG. I couldn’t make the first social meet so this was the first chance to meet the other PyWM members.
The day was very kindly hosted by John Pinner of Clocksoft at his premises near Sutton Coldfield and it took form of a tutorial introduction to Python in the morning with John demonstrating the key features of the langauge and giving us the opportunity to try things out. As a newbie to the language this was great and gave me a much better taste for the language than you get from reading books and following along with examples in code.
Although a lot of people there were experienced Pythonistas I think they found it interesting as they were able to pick up other people’s ways of doing things and share their experiences.
Most of the afternoon session was taken up with Zeth demonstrating some of the web frameworks available that are written round Python ( Plone, Zope, Pylons etc. ) and options for GUI programming such as TKInter, pyQT, PyGTK and wxWindows.
There was also a discussion about organising a community based Python conference in Birmingham in September this year.
Spurred on by my exposure to Python the next day I wrote my first practical Python script to do some text file processing for a big ftp log file I have to look after. I found the language really clean and elegant to use and great for doing what I needed in just a few lines of code. I’ll definitely be spending more time with Python.