Since I last visited the People's Republic of China, I have learnt
many new skills to do with computers. One of these is how to write
my own HTML instead of relying on a piece of software to do it for
The other important skill I have learnt is how to be
concise when writing perl. Consequently, this year's website
is brought to you by only a few perl scripts, as opposed to last
Each page on this website has a script on it to see if anyone is
visiting it. This allows me to tell you that there have been
visitors to this website since midnight on the 8th of
August, which was when I installed the counter. The counting is done
by the familiar Count.cgi program written by Muhammad A. Muquit.
Also, the number of words I have e-mailed this diary so far is
, which is either a) impressive b) unimpressive or c) very
unimpressive because the numbers graphics didn't work.
Below is a list of what is running to bring you the online diary
This perl script downloads my Hermes (University of Cambridge
e-mail) folder containing the reports from each place, extracts
the text from the e-mails (i.e. discarding all the headers) and
finds out where and when the report was written (i.e. the last
two lines of the e-mail should be something like "Beijing
\n 23/08/2001". Files are then generated accordingly, and
a nice index strip is added to each page.
I have also made it
count the number of words I have written and it reports this
fact to the paragraph above.
This shell script runs convertSpool.pl and catches the output of
the program. Depending on whether it is running on-line or on
the windoze box (as a test site), it concatenates a header and
footer onto the output and saves it to ../debug/index.html.
||This crontab updates a text file
each night with a list of who has looked at the website
on that day. This history list is appended to the file
thus showing a list of everyone who has hit the site. Nice