Snow Sprint Report (Part 3)

So, I think the first thing we did when we got to Vienna was to check
the train schedule to Praha. We had to go from Westbanhof to
Sudbanhof. There was a train in less than 2 hours I think so we bought
the tickets and went to eat a Donner Kebap (?) I had never eat one of
those, but it looked quite tasty. That was to be our main source of
food for the following days. I really enjoyed the food, specially
because I was feeling quite hungry, and even more because it was
generous on pepper (and I love that). Unfortunately, the luck was not
on our side. Well, I don’t think I can say that. It was more a matter
of bad planning, but it ended being nice in some sense.

What happened next is that we took the train to Praha, only to find
less than 20 minutes later the hardest way that brazilians need visa
to enter the Czech Republic. What a mess. We had to jump off the train
on the next station and take the train back to Vienna. It was really
cold outside, and getting dark. From the time we left Vienna to the
time we got back it was nearly four hours. Ugh. Alan seemed quite
pissed
at me. Alan called Robert Boulanger which promptly found us a
nice hotel next to the Westbanhof. The hotel was amazing, with bathtub
and all, and it was really nice taking a shower.

Next morning, off we go to try to get a visa, but again luck wasn’t on
our side. It was sunday, and the Czech embassy was closed. Alan
quickly decided that we should turn around and go to Germany
instead. He wanted to see the BodyWorlds expo, which he was
sure was in Stuttgart. There we go, another train. We had to
change trains in a little town (which I can’t seem to remember the name, I
guess was Leinz or something), and the next train would be around two
hours later. We walked around, trying to find something to eat, but
there was only a McDonalds open. Ugh. A few more steps and I devised a
Donner place (suggestively called Food Master). It was quite some
luck, because it was Sunday, and every single shop was closed, except
for the Food Master and McDonalds. During the food, I and Alan
discussed the peculiarities of the government and the expectations for
the future of both US and Brazil. What a chat!

Time for calling home, notifying the girls of our messy situation, and
to take another train. We arrived in Stuttgart when it was already
dark, so the first thing we did was to find a hotel to stay. There
were a couple ones not too far from the Haupftbanhof, so choose one of
the first we found.

On the train from Leinz (?) to Stuttgart, Alan and
I were discussing ways to make Plone faster, so we profiled a bit and
figured that quite some time was spent on rendering templates,
specially loops and stuff like that. Some stuff was being calculated
again and again for each item in the folder_contents template, for
example, and that was quite bad. So, I decided to use a helper View
instance that would be used for doing the expensive calculations, and
would be available on the context of Page Templates. It was quite
quick to hack it, and after some profiling we had it running in with
an improvement of 8s over the unoptimized template (22s original, 14s
optimized). Then I fiddled with it a bit more to make the View use the
Ram Cache machinery, and we cut on another 3s. At this time, the
optimized template was running roughly 10s faster than the
original. Alan seemed pretty happy, given our bad luck on the trip
itinerary :)

(to be continued…)

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