Chicago at night

Chicago at night


Randomly shuffle lines in a file

shuf -o output.txt input.txt

Install coreutils on Mac OS X using Homebrew, if not already installed. Call gshuf instead of shuf.

Octave CLI with AquaTerm on Mac OS X

I’m in need of AquaTerm to plot graphics using gnuplot with octave-cli. I’ll use the following Octave command to produce a nice little graphical plot

octave:1> sombrero


To install aquaterm using homebrew

brew cask install aquaterm

Check lib and headers are properly linked

ls /usr/local/lib/libaquaterm*
ls /usr/local/include/aquaterm/*

If that lists nothing, run

ln -s /Library/Frameworks/AquaTerm.framework/Versions/A/AquaTerm /usr/local/lib/libaquaterm.dylib
ln -s /Library/Frameworks/AquaTerm.framework/Versions/A/AquaTerm /usr/local/lib/libaquaterm.1.1.1.dylib
mkdir /usr/local/include/aquaterm
ln -s /Library/Frameworks/AquaTerm.framework/Versions/A/Headers/* /usr/local/include/aquaterm/.

Install gnuplot with aquaterm

brew install gnuplot --with-aquaterm

Run gnuplot and check whether terminal is set to aqua

$ gnuplot 

	G N U P L O T
	Version 5.0 patchlevel 6    last modified 2017-03-18

	Copyright (C) 1986-1993, 1998, 2004, 2007-2017
	Thomas Williams, Colin Kelley and many others

	gnuplot home:
	faq, bugs, etc:   type "help FAQ"
	immediate help:   type "help"  (plot window: hit 'h')

Terminal type set to 'aqua'
gnuplot> test

The test command should produce a nice little plot such as


Prior versions of octave-cli e.g. 3.8.0 use gnuplot, so you don’t have to do anything else. Newer versions of Octave e.g. 4.2.1 use a different graphics toolkit  that leverages OpenGL. You can switch to gnuplot as follows

octave:1> graphics_toolkit ("gnuplot")

Use JavaFX in a Swing or console app

This short post explores how to integrate JavaFX into a legacy console or Swing application.

Assuming you’ve created an application such as the WebView Sample, create a separate thread to launch JavaFX’s Application class

Thread appThread = new Thread(() -> {

To allow us to control when JavaFX will exit, disable implicit exit. Implicit exit happens when the last window (Stage) is closed by calling hide() or close(). Add this snippet of code to the start() method to JavaFX’s Application class


To run code on JavaFX Application thread

Platform.runLater(new Runnable() {
  @Override public void run() {
    // code runs on JavaFX thread

To exit gracefully when legacy application exits


Run Node.js in a Docker container

In this post, I explore how to run a Node.js web application in a Docker container based on the StrongLoop Process Manager image. I also have a requirement to export and deploy the Docker container to a server that lacks internet access.


Create a new Node.js web app using express-example-app as the starting point

git clone

Head into the app folder and install dependencies

npm install

Start application using PM

slc start

Access http://localhost:3001 in a browser to ensure it works.

Shutdown PM

slc ctl shutdown

Create a new Docker container using StrongLoop PM image as the starting point

docker run --detach --restart=no --publish 8701:8701 --publish 3001:3001 --name strong-pm-container strongloop/strong-pm

Deploy example app by running following command in directory of app

slc deploy http://localhost:8701/ master

Access http://localhost:3001 in a browser to ensure it works.

Discover container’s id

docker ps -a

Commit container to a new image

docker commit 653811fd29f3 myimage

Save image to tar file

docker save -o myimage.tar myimage

Load image file in a new Docker instance (on another machine)

docker load -i myimage.tar

Run image in a new container

docker run --detach --restart=no --publish 3001:3001 --name strong-pm-container myimage

Access http://localhost:3001 in a browser to ensure it works.

Wireshark dissector in Lua for custom protocol over WebSockets

It is fairly easy to write a Wireshark dissector in Lua for your custom protocol over WebSockets. To understand the basics of writing, and using, dissectors for Wireshark in Lua, see Create a Wireshark dissector in Lua.

Here’s a template to get you started with writing your custom dissector. Replace port number 8002, with the port number where your WebSocket server listens for incoming connections, and the dissector should be called.


You can also register the dissector using declared WebSocket protocol name. Retrieve the ws.protocol dissector table instead of ws.port, and add your dissector to the dissector table using protocol name (a string) instead of port number.

If using WebSockets over SSL/TLS, you need to specify the server’s private key file in SSL protocol dissector‘s configuration, so that Wireshark can decrypt the traffic. The protocol field in configuration should be set to http.