Being there for only 30 hours has been far too short, it even looked as if we could have become productive during the hackathon.

The pedestrians of Dublin seem to ignore traffic lights completely. When I realized that I was the only one standing at a red traffic light for the fifth or sixth time in a row, I thought that my German education was showing more than I knew - you will probably find Germans waiting at a red traffic light in the middle of the night with no cars in an area of a square kilometer around them. To my defense I may add that the cars are all driving on the wrong side of the road in Ireland and I was afraid I was overlooking something.

People in Ireland must be rather short or being used to back-pain. The wash basin in my hotel was at the height of my knee and similar equipment was a lot lower than I'm used to as well. Sure, I'm rather tall at 1.96 m, but this was very unusual.

The automate in the gents restroom wasn't only selling condoms - which it probably does all over the world - but sweets as well. I don't think anybody would ever try to sell chocolate in a restroom in Germany.

path: /en/Apache/ApacheCon | #

As many others have already blogged, ApacheCon EU is taking place in Dublin this week.

This year it collides with school vacation in Northrhine Westfalia and so I won't be able to attend the full conference - building castles out of sand on a Northsea beach is the schedule for the rest of the week and beyond.

I met Carsten and his wife at the airport in Düsseldorf. We left Germany at somewhere around 26 degree and reached Dublin about 90 minutes later at 13 degree. When I entered the bus into town I met Betrand. This is what ApacheCon is mostly about for me, meeting people I've only ever met occasionally. I don't expect to do much coding, maybe discuss a few AntUnit things or try to get Torsten to fix the BCEL build in Gump, but not really become productive.

Right now Conor is sitting next to me which really tops it all. We've been working together on Ant for more than six years now but never met in person.

I even had my first Guinness (early as it is) while I watched Australia fall to Italy in a game decided by a last-minute penalty resulting from a bad decision by the referee.

path: /en/Apache/ApacheCon | #

I've just committed a new version of the Ant task for the WiX toolkit to Apache's subversion repo. The former version never worked since I forgot to add a few setters. I never claimed I had tested it anyway ;-)

This time it is tested and to prove it, I've added a target to Ant's own build file that uses it. If you have WiX and the .NET Antlib installed, you can now create an MSI installer package for it. No other software required.

This is how it looks:

    <dn:wix target="${msi.file}"
      mode="both" wixHome="${wix.home}" wixobjDestDir="${wixobj.dir}">
      <sources dir="src/etc" includes="*.wxs"/>
      <moresources dir="${dist.dir}"/>

      <candleParameter name="dist.dir" value="${dist.dir.resolved}"/>
      <candleParameter name="version" value="${manifest-version}"/>

This will create the MSI file using the .wxs descriptions in src/etc, skipping the task if the files in dist.dir haven't changed. The task combines candle and light but you can run them separately if you want to.

Writing the .wxs files turned out to be more cumbersome than I thought - in particular if you have several hundred HTML files of Javadocs to add. I'll have to sit down and write a task that does the equivalent of tallow (which isn't documented in the official manual, see this part of Gabor's excellent tutorial instead), but in a way that makes the resulting fragment more predictable (and valid, in the first place). I ended up running tallow and modifying the result manually.

I haven't even tried to create a UI for the MSI package, but it should be doable with the task as it is.

path: /en/Apache/Ant/dotnet | #