The Cattle Grid

Splashes of digital ink by Michele Beltrame

Me on facebook Me on GitHub Me on Twitter


I am Michele Beltrame, I love computer programming, Unix systems, languages, hiking in the mountains and playing the bass guitar.

This personal web site contains a blog with mainly tech-related articles, plus some extras. Most blog posts (all the tech stuff) are in English, but there's also the occasional Italian language writing.

Latest blog posts

Printing banners on continuous paper (dot matrix printer) from modern Linux

I’ve always loved dot matrix printers. Today it’s possible to easily use them on Linux, even if they are very old. Recently I became interested in printing multi-page banners, a popular task back in the days: I do that nowadays with an Amiga, but using a modern Linux gives access to more fonts and to all the clip-art you can get on the Internet.

Read article »

Two-factor authentication (2FA) in Perl with TOTP algorithm (Microsoft or Google Authenticator or others)

Two-factor authentication is now essential for a lot of web sites, as it ensures that - even if someone gets your access credentials - he/she cannot login, because a token from your mobile phone is required. Therefor, the hacker should also have access to your phone and to the code to unlock it, which is highly unlikely.

Read article »

Cleaner code with perl 5.36 and defer

Version 5.36 of perl was recently released. Amid the new features it contains, there is a very interesting, and maybe lesser-know one: the new defer keyword.

Read article »

Properly transferring away mail from Gmail via IMAP

I wanted to name this article How to finally do away with Gmail, but such a title wouldn’t have revealed the technical content of the writing, which represents its most relevant part.

Read article »

Quick and dirty Apache and mySQL "watchdog"

Continuing the “quick&dirty” series, here’s a solution I implemented on a server where sometimes (once a week or so) mySQL just dies.

Read article »