2006-09-26

Week 4 practice plan

Here is an outline for week 4 training. The goal is for the players to continue improving ball handling, speed in tight spaces, possession, and shooting.

  1. Passing and juggling: Warm up in pairs

  2. One touch: Four players, two tossing the ball and two returning it to the tosser with a particular body part. After returning the ball, quickly switch to the other tosser. Body parts to use follow this sequence: right foot, left foot, right thigh, left thigh, chest, head.

  3. Shield-steal

  4. Tag: Every child dribbles a soccer ball in the space defined while trying to tag other players with their hand. Players cannot leave their own ball. Have them keep count of how many people they have tagged and, if playing twice in a row, see if players can tag more people than they did in the first game. Version 2: Players must tag other players on their knees.

  5. 2v2+2 or 3v3+3

  6. Four-squares passing

  7. Triangle Goal Game

  8. 8v8 wide: Wide field with two goals in opposite corners to encourage spreading the field wide and making crossing passes.

For small sided games, encourage possession (a certain number of consecutive passes before shooting) and shooting from distance.

2006-09-25

ActiveSync error 80141003

I tried to synchronize my Contacts from my PocketPC with ActiveSync 3.7.1, but ActiveSync displayed a window like this:


The following contact cannot be written to Microsoft Outlook due to error 80141003. The item will be skipped.
Firstname Lastname" height="364" width="462">

I had added a URL to the contact's Notes field. The solution is to remove the URL and resynchronize.

Martial arts stores

Two nearby martial arts stores are:

  • Dragon Connections is on Moody Street in Waltham, across the street from New Mother India. The day I visited, the woman running the store was also taking care of her four year old and baby. She was very friendly and helpful, letting me try various products and sizes. I found exactly what I was looking for. Based on my one visit, I recommend this store.

  • Silky Way is at 38 Kneeland Street, near Harrison Avenue in Chinatown. It was closed the day I visited. A friend recommends it.

Florida vacation

Ah, Florida, a great place to vacation during hurricane season, especially if your travel and lodging are free. I redeemed my soon-to-expire airline voucher, my generous aunt and uncle gave me their vacation home for a long weekend, and Jake and I took off for some fun.

Day 1
Our 3.5 hour direct flight from Boston to Fort Meyers grew into a 10 hour odyssey of cancellations, connections, and lost luggage. I looked up driving directions on my PDA and read them to our map-challenged limo driver (no taxis, only limos here). Tired and hungry, we ate at Marsala Pizza in the Bonita Grande Crossing mini-mall. My personal size Margherita pizza and Jake's spaghetti and veal dinner hit the spot before we hit our beds.

Day 2
We started the day at Target on US-41, a good place to buy a day's worth of replacement clothes for Jake. From there, we headed for Sanibel, a short drive north along the beach roads.

We paid a $6 toll to cross bridge, and headed for the Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge, where we powered up on the subs we had bought at the Albertsons grocery store near Target. $30 got us a rented kayak. We paddled along the marked kayak trail, upstream and into a gentle headwind on the return half of the trip, and rewarded ourselves with ice cream bars at the gift shop.

The locals recommend Bowman's Beach for shell collecting, and t didn't let us down. After two hours of shelling, swimming, and repeatedly covering myself in sunblock ("Look, ma, no sunburn!"), we were ready to move on.

"Hi, I'm Michael, and I'm your Bubble Scout tonight." I thought I must have made a mistake. The Bubble Room on Captiva seemed like good advice until I saw the prices on the menu. I resigned myself to getting ripped off, only to be thrilled with the high quality and large portions.

We skipped desert, watched the sunset from one of Sanibel's beaches, and headed home.

Day 3
There was a space shuttle launch scheduled for Day 4. Our plan was to visit Kennedy Space Center the day before the launch, stay overnight at a nearby hotel, and, if we got lucky and the launch took place, watch the launch. The Visitor Center is closed on launch days, so arriving a day early was the only way to guarantee that we would get in. After a four hour drive and about $15 in tolls, we arrived at the Visitor Center. We paid $38 each for "Maximum Access" tickets, which include entry to the Astronaut Hall of Fame. We enjoyed the tour and saw Atlantis on the launch pad for the observation tower.

The Astronaut Hall of Fame's style was a nice contrast to the Visitor Center, which is mostly look-but-don't-touch. Most of the exhibits were interactive, including a high-G-force hurl-a-whirl. We didn't feel like waiting in line for an hour—no exaggeration—but the people who rode it looked like they had a good time.

Day 4
It was a late night driving back from Kennedy Space Center, so today was our rest day. Late in the afternoon, we spent some time in the pool at the Fitness Center.

Day 5
We drove south to the Everglades City visitor center in Everglades National Park. We arrived just in time to watch the park rangers locking everything down—they had closed the entire park as we were driving. Hurricane Ernesto was approaching, and the park's new policy was to shut down a full day before a hurricane's predicted landfall.

Determined to enjoy ourselves, we headed for Captain Doug's Small Airboat Tours. We paid $35 for me and $17.50 for Jake, and Captain Glen took us for a ride. Captain Glen piloted us through the mangroves and showed us the "wild" animals: a raccoon, a group of pigs, and a really big gator. The animals aren't exactly wild; they are well trained to know that airboat captains bring food.

We returned to Bonita Springs and spent the afternoon at Barefoot Beach.

Day 6
We spent the morning cleaning up the apartment, and called a taxi for a ride to the airport. Our Delta/Song flight had personal entertainment systems on each seat back. A nearby system kept rebooting, and I noticed that it ran Linux. As it booted, Tux appeared in the top left corner of the screen, and the boot sequence announced that it was running Red Hat something.

2006-09-22

Code churn and defect density

As a software producer, your goal is to deliver a high quality product to your customers. As you approach your release date, you want your product to have a known quality level. The released product will contain bugs. Your team's goal is to find as many bugs as possible, fixing the most important ones before the release date, listing the less important ones in the product documentation and fixing them later.

That last step is bug triage. You need to classify the known bugs into two categories: the ones that are important to fix, and the ones you can live with. Every bug fix is a code change, and every code change can introduce a new bug, so you want to limit the number of bug fixes. You don't want to accidentally introduce new bugs that you don't have time to find and fix before the release date.

Here is a quick survey of articles and literature on the topics of bug triage, code churn, and defect density:

  • The politics of bug fixing discusses bug triage and the political games that take place as people lobby to get their favorite bugs fixed.

  • My life as a Code Economist is a great overview on the subject. It gives bug triage advice and includes the quote, "Every time you fix a bug, you risk introducing another one.".

  • Use of Relative Code Churn Measures to Preduct System Defect Density (avalaible to ACM Digital Library subscribers) reaches these conclusions:

    • Increase in relative code churn measures is accompanied by an increase in system defect density;

    • Using relative values of code churn predictors is better than using absolute values to explain the system defect density;

    • Relative code churn measures can be used as efficient predictors of system defect density; and

    • Relative code churn measures can be used to discriminate between fault and not fault-prone binaries.

  • Where the Bugs Are (ACM) starts with the assumption that being able to preduct which modules contains bugs is an important contributor to the efficiency of the test team.

2006-09-21

Directions to Belmont Field 3A

Here are directions to Belmont Field 3A, courtesy of the Belmont coach:

Hello Richard, yes 2:30pm at the field on concord ave, please see this link...

http://www.belmontsoccer.com/

the field is 3A, passing the belmont high school on your right continue down concord ave, it is after the football field, just after the hockey rink, before the baseball field (all on your right) if you pass the mobile gas station (also on your right) you've gone too far.

Here is a map, and here are the directions on the Belmont Soccer web site.

2006-09-18

Intenational Talk Like a Pirate Day

Pirate Day badge

Avast! Language Log reminded me that tomorrow is International Talk Like a Pirate Day! Arrr, Cambridge soccer is off the port side, and we will hold a Pirates training session tomorrow, like usual.

2006-09-16

Week 3 practice plan

Here is an outline for week 3 training. The goal is for the players to continue improving their skills.

  1. Passing and juggling: Warm up in pairs

  2. One touch: Four players, two tossing the ball and two returning it to the tosser with a particular body part. After returning the ball, quickly switch to the other tosser. Body parts to use follow this sequence: right foot, left foot, right thigh, left thigh, chest, head.

  3. Speed dribble: Players line up on any side of a square. Players dribble across the square and back as many times as possible within 60 seconds. The player that goes across the square the most times wins.

  4. 2v2+2 or 3v3+3

  5. Four-squares passing

  6. Four Small Goals

  7. Triange Goal Game: Make a triangle with three cones in the center if the field. The sides of the triangle each serve as a goal mouth so teams can shoot at three different goals. Place 2 goalies in the triangle and the 2 goalies must protect the three goal mouths. Two even teams play a normal soccer game, except they both can score on any of the three faces of the triangle for a point. The game is continuous and if a goalie catches the ball he just throws it out so the game continues. Version 2: Use two balls at the same time.

  8. 8v8 wide: Wide field with two goals in opposite corners to encourage spreading the field wide and making crossing passes.

For small sided games, award extra points for each successful wall pass, or require wall passes before shooting on goal.

Directions to Cutting Field, Sudbury

Here are directions to Cutting Field in Sudbury, courtesy of the Sudbury coach:

The web link is
http://www.sudburysoccer.org/directions.htm

the directions with out the map are:

Cutting Field

Directions: From Rte. 128 take Rte. 20 west to Wayland Center. Turn right at the lights onto Rte. 27, heading to Sudbury Center. A bit more than three miles later you will pass Sudbury's main fire station. At that point the road forks. Veer right to stay on Rte. 27, which becomes Maynard Road. Continue on Maynard Road for approximately 2 miles. Cutting Field, with its artificial surface, is easy to spot on your left, just past Wyman Drive and about 100 yards before the Maynard line. Parking is available in a lot behind the field.

The field is turf, cleats or turf shoes are fine.

2006-09-12

How to run Tomcat automatically

To configure Linux to run Tomcat automatically at boot up, follow these steps.

First, note where you installed Java and Tomcat. My JAVA_HOME is /usr/java/jdk1.5.0, and my CATALINA_HOME is /opt/apache-tomcat. Specify these directory names in the tomcat script that you create.

Login as the tomcat user and create a script in directory $CATALINA_HOME/bin named tomcat. The script contains this text:

:
# Starts and stops Tomcat.
# Richard Kasperowski
# 2006-09-12

export JAVA_HOME=/usr/java/jdk1.5.0
export CATALINA_HOME=/opt/apache-tomcat

cd $CATALINA_HOME/bin

case "$1" in
start)
echo -n "Starting tomcat: "
su tomcat -c "./catalina.sh start"
retval=$?
echo
;;

stop)
echo -n "Shutting down tomcat: "
su tomcat -c "./catalina.sh stop"
retval=$?
echo
;;

restart)
$0 stop
$0 start
retval=$?
;;

*)
echo "Usage: tomcat {start|stop|restart}"
exit 1
esac

exit $retval

Make the script executable:

$ chmod +x tomcat

Create links from /etc/init.d and /etc/rc.d to the new script:

$ sudo ln -s /opt/apache-tomcat/bin/tomcat /etc/init.d/tomcat
$ sudo ln -s /etc/init.d/tomcat /etc/rc3.d/S99tomcat
$ sudo ln -s /etc/init.d/tomcat /etc/rc3.d/K99tomcat

Test the links:

$ sudo /etc/init.d/tomcat stop
Shutting down tomcat: Using CATALINA_BASE: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_HOME: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_TMPDIR: /opt/apache-tomcat/temp
Using JRE_HOME: /usr/java/jdk1.5.0

$ sudo /etc/init.d/tomcat start
Starting tomcat: Using CATALINA_BASE: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_HOME: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_TMPDIR: /opt/apache-tomcat/temp
Using JRE_HOME: /usr/java/jdk1.5.0

$ sudo /etc/rc3.d/K99tomcat stop
Shutting down tomcat: Using CATALINA_BASE: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_HOME: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_TMPDIR: /opt/apache-tomcat/temp
Using JRE_HOME: /usr/java/jdk1.5.0

$ sudo /etc/rc3.d/S99tomcat start
Starting tomcat: Using CATALINA_BASE: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_HOME: /opt/apache-tomcat
Using CATALINA_TMPDIR: /opt/apache-tomcat/temp
Using JRE_HOME: /usr/java/jdk1.5.0

$

If that all worked, you succeeded.

Resources:
The script was adapted from webMathematica configuration instructions.

2006-09-10

Fall 2006 schedule

Oct. 31 update: note the new date and time for the Week 8 game vs. Belmont.

Here is the Cambridge Pirates BAYS U14B game schedule for Fall 2006:

Week

Date

Opponent

Location

Time

Directions

1

Sep 9

Brookline

Danehy 2

1:00

Danehy Park

2

Sep 16

Sudbury

Sudbury CU

2:30

Cutting Field

3

Sep 23

Belmont

Belmont 3A

2:30

Field 3A

4

Sep 30

Lexington

Danehy 4

2:30

Danehy Park

5

Oct 7

Acton-Boxborough

A-B 14

2:30

Leary Field

6

Oct 14

Brookline

Downs Field (5A)

1:30

Downs Field (5A)

7

Oct 21

Sudbury

Danehy 4

2:30

Danehy Park

8

Nov 12 (was Oct 28)

Belmont

Danehy 4

12:00

Danehy Park

9

Nov 4

Lexington

Lexington 1

3:00

Lexington 1

10

Nov 11

Acton-Boxborough

Danehy 4

2:30

Danehy Park

Our home games are on the artificial turf field, and Lexington also has artificial turf, so it is unlikely that any of the home games or the Lexington game will be postponed due to bad weather. For home games, call the Danehy Park hot line at 617-349-4895 to see whether the field is open. For away games, Ed or I will send email announcing a postponed game.

Please be at all games 30 minutes before the scheduled start time, prepared and ready to warm up and play. Being prepared includes:

  • Wearing all equipment, including uniform, shin guards, and shoes

  • Not wearing any jewelry, necklaces, or bracelets

  • Ready to warm up

  • Brought your own drink and snack

For away games, Ed or I will coordinate with the opposing coach to verify the time and location and to get driving directions. We will send an update by email before each away game.

2006-09-09

Week 2 practice plan

Here is an outline for week 2 training. The goals are for the coaches to continue getting to know the players, and for the players to begin improving their skills.

  1. Passing and juggling: Warm up in pairs or small groups

  2. One touch: Toss the ball to your partner, and he returns it to you with a particular body part. Body parts to use follow this sequence: right foot, left foot, right thigh, left thigh, chest, head.

  3. 2v2+2 or 3v3+3

  4. 5 Goal Game: 4v4+2; or N+1 goal game, with NvN+2, where N is the number of players per side. Add: make a certain number of passes before shooting, then turn it into Gates Passing.

  5. Four-squares passing

  6. Four Small Goals: Conditions to add include: make a certain number of passes before shooting; shoot from farther away.

  7. Triange Goal Game: Make a triangle with three cones in the center if the field. The sides of the triangle each serve as a goal mouth so teams can shoot at three different goals. Place 2 goalies in the triangle and the 2 goalies must protect the three goal mouths. Two even teams play a normal soccer game, except they both can score on any of the three faces of the triangle for a point. The game is continuous and if a goalie catches the ball he just throws it out so the game continues. Version 2: Use two balls at the same time.

  8. 8v8: Two goals. Start with goals in opposite corners to encourage spreading the field wide and making crossing passes.

Resource: Massachusetts Youth Soccer U6-U12 Curriculum

How to remove comments from Roller 2.0-incubating

It's easy to prohibit people from adding comments to blog entries, but Roller 2.0 doesn't make it easy to delete them. Here's how I do it.

I installed Tomcat under /opt/apache-tomcat, which I'll call TOMCAT_HOME, and I installed Roller under TOMCAT_HOME/webapps/blog, which I'll call ROLLER_HOME. When I installed Roller, I used file ROLLER_HOME/WEB-INF/dbscripts/mysql/createdb.sql to create the MySQL database schema. In this file, I find:

create table roller_comment (
...

This looks like the table from which I will delete rows. Now I need to remember my MySQL username and passwsord for Roller. File TOMCAT_HOME/conf/Catalina/localhost/blog.xml contains this entry, in which I tell Roller my MySQL credentials:

 driverClassName="com.mysql.jdbc.Driver"
url="jdbc:mysql://localhost:3306/roller?autoReconnect=true&useUnicode=true
&characterEncoding=utf-8&mysqlEncoding=utf8"
username="MyRollerUser"
password="MyRollerPass"
maxActive="20"
maxIdle="3"
removeAbandoned="true"
maxWait="3000" />

Then I log in to MySQL:

$ mysql roller -h localhost -u MyRollerUser -pMyRollerPass
Reading table information for completion of table and column names
You can turn off this feature to get a quicker startup with -A

Welcome to the MySQL monitor. Commands end with ; or \g.
Your MySQL connection id is 111 to server version: 4.1.20

Type 'help;' or '\h' for help. Type '\c' to clear the buffer.

mysql>

To see all the comments, I type:

mysql> select * from roller_comment;
...
11 rows in set (0.00 sec)

mysql>

In this case, the only comment worth keeping has id ff808081084877d1010c56353ddc02c4. I test a WHERE clause that I will use to delete all the other comments:

mysql> select * from roller_comment where id != 'ff808081084877d1010c56353ddc02c4';
...
10 rows in set (0.00 sec)

mysql>

The result is correct, so I delete the offensive comments and verify the result:

mysql> delete from roller_comment where id != 'ff808081084877d1010c56353ddc02c4';
Query OK, 10 rows affected (0.00 sec)

mysql> select * from roller_comment;
...
1 row in set (0.00 sec)

mysql>

All done. Now I can share my blog with the kids again.

2006-09-06

How to hide comments in Roller

Someone defeated my Roller-based blog's amazingly difficult CAPTCHA (e.g., "What is 3 + 4?") and posted some embarrassing spam comments. I needed a quick way to hide them. In Settings, Preferences/Templates, I edited my _day template by commenting out #showCommentsPageLink( $entry ). My _day template now looks like this:


#showDayPermalink( $day )
#showEntryDate( $day )


#foreach( $entry in $entries )



$entry.title
#showEntryText($entry)
$text.get("macro.weblog.postedby") $entry.creator.userName
(#showTimestamp($entry.pubTime))
#showEntryPermalink( $entry )


#end

#showLinkbacks( $day )

This almost does what I want: now, no one can add new comments. It's not obvious how to prevent comments from being displayed, though. There are two things I still need to do: 1) Quickly delete the comments from the database using the MySQL command line, and 2) Upgrade to Roller 2.3, which is available on the Roller download page. According to the user guide, Roller 2.3 has better comment management and spam handling.

2006-09-03

Week 1 practice plan

Here is an outline for week 1 training. The goals are to get to know each other and review U12 skills.

  1. Passing and juggling: Warm up in pairs or small groups

  2. Colors passing: Half of the players in red pennies, half in blue. Teams playing together in the same space combine in the passing sequence blue-blue-red-red-blue-blue-red-red etc. etc. Ball can never stop, players can never stop moving, and ball cannot leave area of play. Coach can limit touch-count, mandate which foot to pass with or which side of foot to pass with as sees fit. When players can do first sequence adequately and without frequent errors change the sequence to blue-blue-blue-red-red-red-blue-blue-blue etc. etc. Stress communication and technical passing points throughout. Make this activity competitive by counting errors and setting goals by lowering allowed errors.

  3. Shield-steal

  4. 2v2+2 or 3v3+3

  5. 5 Goal Game: 4v4+2; or N+1 goal game, with NvN+2, where N is the number of players per side

  6. Four-squares passing

  7. Four Small Goals

  8. 8v8: two goals

Resource: Massachusetts Youth Soccer U6-U12 Curriculum

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