Archive for January 27, 2014

Monday, January 27, 2014

Joining PDF Files

The “Combine PDF Pages.action” Automator action includes a Python script that’s often more convenient to use (via akuhn).

Plain Text, Papers, Pandoc

Kieran Healy:

So, first I will say a little bit about the general problem, and then I will tell you something specific: how to take the draft of a scholarly paper, typically including bibliographical references, figures, and the results of some data analysis, and turn it into nice-looking PDF and HTML output. The hopefully redeeming thing about this discussion is that it will help you use the various resources I make available for doing this.

Update (2014-01-28): Dr. Drang:

The Markdown file is processed by a shell script, md2report, which spits out a LaTeX version of the report. Most of the time this file is ready to be processed by pdflatex, which also gathers in all the images files and creates the PDF output. If the report needs a particularly complex table, or if I need to tweak the spacing somewhere, I’ll go in and edit the LaTeX file directly. This is pretty rare, which is why I’ve grayed out my input to the LaTeX file. The great majority of my reports need no direct LaTeX input from me.

What Benefits Does the iPhone 5S Get From Being 64-bit?

Pierre Lebeaupin:

That means, for instance, that Anand’s comparison on the same hardware of two versions of Geekbench: the one just before and the one just after addition of ARM64 support, while clever and the best he could do, is not really a fair comparison of ARM64v8 and ARM32v8, but in fact a comparison between ARM64v8 and ARMv7. When you remove the impressive AES and SHA1 advantages from the comparison table, you end up with something that may be fair, though it’s still hard to know for sure.


I’m not going to conclude one way or the other: neither that the 64-bit aspect of the iPhone 5S is a marketing gimmick, or that it is everything Apple implied it would be. I won’t enter this game. Because what I do see here is the result of awesome work from both the processor side, the OS side, and the toolchain side at Apple to seamlessly get us a full 64-bit ARM environment (with 32-bit compatibility) all at once, without us having to double-guess the next increment. The shorter the transition, the better we’ll all be, and Apple couldn’t do shorter than that.

PHP Function Naming

Rasmus Lerdorf (via Hacker News):

htmlspecialchars was a very early function. Back when PHP had less than 100 functions and the function hashing mechanism was strlen(). In order to get a nice hash distribution of function names across the various function name lengths names were picked specifically to make them fit into a specific length bucket.

Disabling Auto Updates in WordPress

Andrew Nacin:

The DISALLOW_FILE_MODS constant blocks any kind of filesystem changes, not just by background updates but by all users as well. So, gone are the file editors; the ability to update core, themes, or plugins; and the ability to install new themes or plugins.

I want to disable automatic updates because I update my site by rsyncing to the server from my local copy. So anything that the server downloads itself will get blown away.