The President's Message
by Tony Butka
First, thanks to Steven Levine for stepping up to the plate this month and giving an excellent technical explanation of LEX and YACC, with brief sidelines into Flex and Bison. I will never admit that my eyes glazed towards the end, never. Still, I think that it is important for us marginal programmer types to get a basic understanding of how compilers get put together, and these are the tools that get you there. For those who don't know, LEX stands for 'A Lexical Analyzer Generator', and YACC stands for Yet Another Compiler-Compiler. Steven provided specific code examples of both input and output, as well as showing how the two tools work together.
We are also in the process of getting better organized regarding meeting topics and advance notice (what a concept). Below is the current list in no particular order of presentation:
- Back to the Basics: Keeping that OS/2 system clean. Running Unimaint and Check Ini, editing the config.sys file, managing path statements, filesystems and backing up.
- eComStation 1.2: Now that 1.2 and goodies are actually shipping (yes, we have it on good authority that they really are), it's time to do an installation to a partition and see all the stuff, kick the tires and check out how it works. We'll also take a look at the pricing and upgrade information for the basic CD, the AppPak CD, and SVISTA (remember the neat Virtual PC which got eaten by Microsoft? Here's our replacement, now in mid-beta).
- A presentation/update of Guiffy, which may well be at version 7 by the time we corral Bill into a demonstaration. Very very cool stuff.
- Producing bootable CD's
- OS/2 and fonts: TrueType fonts, Postscript fonts, screen fonts, printer fonts and how all of this stuff works together (or doesn't). Mabye even a look (simple one) at the OS/2 printing and font subsystems.
- A current look at scanners and OS/2, which means a look at SANE as well.
- E-mail: spamming, spoofing, pfishing, parsing headers, understanding how e-mail works and how to protect yourself from all that garbage without throwing out the baby in the bathwater.
- A Comic Show (more to be revealed)
- Looking at MySQL: the ultimate open source database which just keeps on getting better. Mabye a first part on the basics of installing under OS/2, running the server and clients, creating, modifying, and displaying databases; a look at the terrific resources for SQL, mysql and tools available. If we get really crazy (meaning that we find a volunteer or two) mabye we can do followups looking at neat tools working with mysql likecgi, php, rexx, perl, python, apache, hooks, and how to dynamically generate web pages.
If you have any suggestions for other topics, just let me know.
See you next month, when the topic will be Installing and tweaking 4OS/2, the (now free) OS/2 command line interpeter that lets you do everything you want from a command line, including listing file contents, printing the files, batch files, color coding, date stamping, range sizing, file completion and too much to even go into here. Time permitting, we may start in on an eCS install.
If you have comments or other suggestions, email Tony at
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