E-Scribe : a programmer’s blog

About Me

PBX I'm Paul Bissex. I build web applications using open source software, especially Django. Started my career doing graphic design for newspapers and magazines in the '90s. Then wrote tech commentary and reviews for Wired, Salon, Chicago Tribune, and others you never heard of. Then I built operations software at a photography school. Then I helped big media serve 40 million pages a day. Then I worked on a translation services API doing millions of dollars of business. Now I'm building the core platform of a global startup accelerator. Feel free to email me.


I co-wrote "Python Web Development with Django". It was the first book to cover the long-awaited Django 1.0. Published by Addison-Wesley and still in print!


Built using Django, served with gunicorn and nginx. The database is SQLite. Hosted on a FreeBSD VPS at Johncompanies.com. Comment-spam protection by Akismet.


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Stuff I Use

Bitbucket, Debian Linux, Django, Emacs, FreeBSD, Git, jQuery, LaunchBar, macOS, Markdown, Mercurial, Python, S3, SQLite, Sublime Text, xmonad

Spam Report

At least 237143 pieces of comment spam killed since 2008, mostly via Akismet.

WebKit screen-grabbers

Missing in action for many months after a server hard drive failure, the webkit2png utility by Paul Hammond reappeared in August. It uses WebKit to automatically render PNG images of web pages. It beats regular screen grabs mainly in its ability to render full-length images -- as if you had an infinitely tall monitor. By default it produces three versions: an actual-size "clipped" version, an actual-size long version, and a thumbnail-size long version (here's an example). It requires that you have PyObjC.

There's also a newer utility called Paparazzi that puts a nice GUI interface on the concept (though it is not in fact based on the webkit2png code).

Sunday, October 30th, 2005
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