Archive for the 'google' Category

May '10
Customize Chrome Omnibar
by Frank Spychalski filed under google

I love Chrome! But one thing drove me crazy: we have numerous internal web-apps running on different hosts. From Firefox was easy to get to these tools by just typing the toolname (not the FQDN) in the url bar. Chrome knows it better and assumes that I want to search for toolname. A moment later it asked me if I meant toolname/ and remebers this choice (at least it annoys me only once per tool).

Yesterday I I got an idea and tryed a snippet of javascript as a search engine and was happy to see that it worked as intended. A few minutes of javascript hacking later the omnibar behaved the way I like it:

  • multiple words are a search query
  • single words are URLs, even without the trailing slash, always!
  • fix broken http at the start of an URL (happens to me sometimes when I cut’n'paste)

This is the current version of my default search engine, feel free to criticize, I’m a JS noob:
javascript:query="%s"; if (\s/) != -1) { window.location="" + query; } else { query = query.replace(/^h?t?t?p?:///, ""); window.location="http://"+query; }

Enjoy and let me know if you have other ideas on how to improve this!

Feb '10
by Frank Spychalski filed under google, Work

This is mainly a test to see how adding this blog to my Buzz account works. Additionally I want to say how thrilled I am to finally buzz with people outside work ;-)

Jan '10
JRuby on appengine with Ubuntu
by Frank Spychalski filed under appengine, JRuby, Ruby

Overall the instructions on are really good, so this is just a dump to remind me of the Ubuntu specific stuff I did on a pristine Ubuntu installation…

sudo apt-get install sun-java6-jdk
sudo apt-get install ruby-full rubygems

This installs only rubygems 1.3.1 but appengine needs 1.3.5.

ERROR: Error installing google-appengine:
bundler requires RubyGems version >= 1.3.5

sudo gem install rubygems-update
sudo /var/lib/gems/1.8/bin/update_rubygems
sudo gem install google-appengine

Et voilà! Ten minutes later I have a running hello world in the cloud ;-)

Aug '09
Android scripting environment supports JRuby
by Frank Spychalski filed under android, Ruby

Quite some time has passed since the last time I wrote something on this blog, mostly because I did little non-work related worth mentioning.

But last week I helped Damon to finally support JRuby on his Android Scripting Environment (ASE).

  • Downloaded JRuby sources (jruby-1.2.0RC1) from
  • Patched the build.xml to not include doc/index.html from dynalang.jar otherwise dx will complain about an HTML page in the ruby-complete.jar.

    $ diff -r jruby-1.2.0RC1 jruby-1.2.0RC1.patched/
    Only in jruby-1.2.0RC1.patched/: build
    diff -r jruby-1.2.0RC1/build.xml jruby-1.2.0RC1.patched/build.xml
    <         <zipfileset src="${build.lib.dir}/dynalang-0.3.jar"/>
    >         <zipfileset src="${build.lib.dir}/dynalang-0.3.jar">
    >           <exclude name="**/doc/index.html"/>
    >         </zipfileset>
    <         <zipfileset src="${build.lib.dir}/dynalang-0.3.jar"/>
    >         <zipfileset src="${build.lib.dir}/dynalang-0.3.jar">
    >           <exclude name="**/doc/index.html"/>
    >         </zipfileset>
    <         <zipfileset src="${build.lib.dir}/dynalang-0.3.jar"/>
    >         <zipfileset src="${build.lib.dir}/dynalang-0.3.jar">
    >           <exclude name="**/doc/index.html"/>
    >         </zipfileset>
  • Downloaded the JSON sources from and put them in lib/ruby/1.8/json/
  • Copied android.rb to lib/ruby/1.8/.
  • Built jar-complete (ant jar-complete) and added jruby-complete.jar to eclipse project.
  • Connected the bits and pieces in

    But beware! The new ASE apk is HUGE (4.6M) and JRuby is fairly slow. But it works ;-)

Feb '09
Code reviews work
by Frank Spychalski filed under articles, comments, google

Seems like nowadays I only write blog posts in response to other blog articles… But I hope this is better than not writing at all. Ted Neward asks if code reviews do actually work because evidence suggests, that the scientific review process does not. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr '08
Looking for an intern
by Frank Spychalski filed under google, Work

Asok the internI am looking for an intern (more details) for later this year. I have a number of interesting ideas for projects, most of them involve Ruby (more specific JRuby), Android and Eclipse. Your skill set should include at least Java and if possible Ruby and/or Eclipse API.

I’m looking for a commitment of at least three months (I would prefer six) and you should be within one or two years of receiving degree. If this sounds interesting please apply here and add a note that you would like to work with Frank Spychalski in Munich.

Apr '08
Girl’s day in the office
by Frank Spychalski filed under Computer, Fun, google

Google had a special doodle for the Girl's day
Yesterday was Girl’s day and our office hosted a few girls from schools in and around Munich. Read the rest of this entry »

Dec '07
JRuby on Android
by Frank Spychalski filed under android, google, Ruby, Work

a red robotToday I tried to run JRuby on Android. I failed. This article is more like a lab report so expect more boring details… Read the rest of this entry »

Dec '07
First glance at Android
by Frank Spychalski filed under android, google, Work

As you can see I’m toying around with the android SDK. I guess this will be my first 20 percent project here at Google.

So far I’m impressed with the state of the SDK. There is a ton of documentation and up to now everything worked at once.

I have a couple of ideas I would like to try on android but unfortunately all of them involve bluetooth and there is no bluetooth support for the emulator (yet?).

If you have a great idea you would like to see as an app for your next cellphone, just leave me a comment or implement it on your own :-)