Jun. 27th, 2011

terriko: (Default)
This is my (slightly cranky) record of building Firefox. I am reminded of why I don't do much open source dev directly on my mac -- documentation tends to be weak, and searching error messages yields many people being told by devs "I'm sorry, I don't have a mac to test this." Frustrating. Actually, I probably should have thrown more of the error messages into this document for those people... but I'm not going and breaking my build again to do that, so this is mostly for my own reference.

Mozilla does, a few layers deep, tell you that fink is not recommended for building Mozilla. It's buried in this document, but of course that came well after the "getting the source code" document which said fink was fine, and is surrounded by instructions on how to use fink. Oh well.

I had to upgrade fink to get Mercurial installed properly, so I'm feeling stubborn about it now and want to see if it can be done. So here's what I've had to do....


  1. Reinstall fink to get mercurial

  2. Get the source. Which takes a good long while, but takes even longer when it hangs the first time and you don't bother to fix it for an hour.

  3. Make a mozconfig file in the source directory. Mine currently contains:

    . $topsrcdir/browser/config/mozconfig
    mk_add_options MOZ_OBJDIR=@TOPSRCDIR@/ff-dbg
    mk_add_options MOZ_MAKE_FLAGS="-s -j4"
    ac_add_options --disable-optimize
    ac_add_options --enable-debug
    ac_add_options --enable-tests
    ac_add_options --disable-webm


    The very last line is because webm threw an error, and I didn't care enough to debug it just now.

  4. Then you can start trying to run make -f client.mk and see what breaks, such as webm as I mentioned above.

  5. You'll need autoconf2.13 because Mozilla is stuck in the past requires some features from it. The fink package is called autoconf2.13-legacy, and when you run fink -b install autoconf2.13-legacy it will install non-intuitively in /sw/lib/autoconf2.13 to avoid conflicts. I then added a link so that mozilla's default config file could find it:

    ln /sw/lib/autoconf2.13/bin/autoconf /sw/bin/autoconf2.13

  6. Next I was missing libIDL-2.0, which is libidl2 in fink. Yet another fink -b install libidl2 and some waiting.

  7. I thought my next problem is due to missing Java libraries, available from Apple, but it turns out that it was actually something else, so I have no idea if these are really necessary.

  8. The "something else" is that I don't have the 64bit libraries thanks to not having selected "64 bit only" when installing fink. Bank to reinstalling fink... *sigh*

    I'm awfully glad I started making this list, though, as I'm now going to have to go through it all again.

  9. Get some hideous error:

    IOError: $MACOSX_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET mismatch: now "10.3" but "10.5" during configure

    It seems related to this bug in python2.7, although it doesn't seem like it's python's fault so much as fink's if my python was build for 10...

    Fastest solution: uninstall python 2.7. Which uninstalls mercurial since it was based on 2.7, but I don't need to check anything in for a while and care more about having a functioning build atm.

  10. Over an hour of compiling later... Success! I can run TumucumaqueDebug.app (yes, that's Firefox) from obj-ff-uni/x86_64/dist -- not that this was helpfully given to me anywhere. After some fruitless directory clicking, I found it by searching for *.app.


Final mozconfig:

$topsrcdir/browser/config/mozconfig
. $topsrcdir/build/macosx/universal/mozconfig
mk_add_options MOZ_OBJDIR=@TOPSRCDIR@/obj-ff-uni
mk_add_options MOZ_MAKE_FLAGS="-s -j2"
mk_add_options MACOSX_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET=10.6
ac_add_options --disable-optimize
ac_add_options --enable-debug
ac_add_options --disable-webm
terriko: (Default)
New Scientist: Gender-spotting tool could have rumbled fake blogger.

It turned out the author of the blog, "Gay Girl in Damascus", was a man – something the online gender checker would have picked up on. When New Scientist fed the text of the last blog post into the software, it said that the author was 63.2 per cent likely to be male.


Seriously? This is not journalism. This is not news. My last three entries: two of them rank me around 55% male (the other, 53% female, ironically in the most technical of the posts). The worst part of the article claims that:

Even a "neutral" decision might indicate that someone is trying to write in a gender voice that does not come naturally to them, he says. "It could be quite telling."


Clearly, I've been living a lie all this time and should be forced to confess... that I don't fit into their boxes very well.
terriko: (Default)
Trying to catch up on some book reviews. This is just my returned library list, not counting the ones I got out of my sister's pile, borrowed from someone, got from librarything, or still ahve out. Because I don't feel like finding all of those right now given that my returned library list alone is already over 30 books that I haven't reviewed...

Rather than have you get all of those at once, you're getting them grouped by type of book. Today, non-fiction. Still to come: graphic novels and straight up novels. At least, assuming everything goes as planned. I wish dreamwidth had a nice way to queue up posts and put them up later!


Non-fiction




The Elements of Graphic Design by Alex White
I read a lot of books about graphic design both for my research work and for general interest on my part as someone who often has to produce attractive things, but this one stood out because it's a nice slim volume that contains just enough history to be interesting to read in a few sittings, and enough examples and ideas to be used as a quick reference guide. I'm not sure I've ever seen another volume where the balance was as perfect for my regular casual needs, so I may be getting a copy for my personal library sometime. Although then I'd be missing out on reading whatever text the library has on hand and getting a new perspective every time, so maybe I'll just buy it to give/lend to other people. That's honestly why I buy most books anyhow -- I read directly from the library as much as possible.


The Back of the Napkin Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures By Roam, Dan
A great little book about how to do simple visualizations to better explain your ideas. As someone who loves working in the visual space (see: visual security policy), this was partially stuff I knew, but with lots of good ideas for taking it to the next level. I found the second half or so bogged down a bit because I didn't have a particular project in mind for all the exercises, but it's well worth it for the first few chapters.

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