1. 16

The weekly thread to discuss what you have done recently and are working on this week.

Be descriptive, and don’t hesitate to ask for help!

  1.  

  2. 8

    Writing my first TLA+ spec.

    1. 4

      glee

      Feel free to message me if you run into any problems!

      1. 3

        …are you Leslie Lamport?

        1. 4

          No, but I’ve written a ton about it and Lamport is a lot busier than I am.

    2. 4

      Catching up on all the VODs from SGDQ and trying to resist the urge to get into speedrunning.

      1. 1

        Oblivion was amazing :D

      2. 4

        We just released our new big update for the search engine. It now uses D3.js for rendering all the mind maps, it is super smooth and we are quite happy with it.

        Here is the search engine : https://learn-anything.xyz/

        Would really love to hear your guys thoughts on it. ?

        1. 1

          I came across learn-anything before and found it really interesting! What did you guys use before D3?

          1. 1

            We used our own renderer and panzoom for zooming in and out. But it’s really bad compared to what D3.js allows us to do.

        2. 3

          These threads seem to be pretty useful as far as motivating me to actually work on side projects. I finally finished up a few cleanup tasks on DailyNotes to make it a better workflow for new users. I put in a few panels and notes explaining how it works, only shown for new users, and adjusted the signup/signin workflow to create a note stream for you and dump you in it, instead of leaving the user to figure it out.

          Relatedly, all of my little side projects are hosted on a DigitalOcean small box with 0.5GB RAM. I keep thinking of setting up a Cron task to do my LetsEncrypt renewals, but at least half the time, it seems to try to update itself and run into a RAM issue, where I have to shut down a few things for it to be able to complete. Doesn’t seem worth the trouble to automate that, and kinda risky too. Plus it seems like a good idea generally to have to log into the box at least every once in awhile just to make sure things are all right.

          1. 3

            Mostly just preparing for a move to a new house. We’ve lived in this one for ten years and as a consequence have a huge amount of crap to move. Anyone want to lift heavy boxes?

            Personal project side, not much since the move is taking up most of my time. I added a status bar to my little terminal multiplexer.

            On the work side, I just got done adding in a fail-fast mechanism for the code that lets us exclude the vast majority of stuff that we don’t care about from most processing. Should be a major performance win.

            1. 3

              I’ve managed to do this, making me feel rather productive:

              • a simple daemon that resets prio, ioprio and oom_score_adj for all new processes by name according to its configuration; I haven’t even tried yet whether it achieves anything, though
              • a tool that automatically reruns applications e.g. when they get recompiled
              • prepared an article about the desktop-tools package in which these tools are contained
              • done some work on an article that discusses TUI creation for *nix terminals and discovered a few things in the process; this article is going to take a lot of time to finish, though, it seems
              1. 1

                That daemon is something that needed to be written. Thank you for that.

              2. 3

                Continuing my switch to iPad-only workflows, in amongst sporting activities and general life. Next on my list to sort is how to get my static site building & publishing, which rather happily includes moving the site to a new server along the way. I’m thinking of hooking the github webhooks to build branches on-demand and a merge to master builds for the live site. Then I’m free to edit & push to github to have the site builds triggered.

                Also borrowing a 1980s bike off my mate for an [Audax][http://www.aukweb.net] event next weekend, because why wouldn’t I ride an old bone-shaker in the spirit of the self-navigating distance events. He’s not ridden it for a year or so though, so need to fettle it a bit beforehand to make sure it’s roadworthy.

                1. 3

                  Currently applying for Master’s degrees. I am working on my Bachelor’s thesis and – if everything works out nicely – will be done at the end of September and can then enroll in a university of my choice for the winter semester. It’s actually quite a hassle gathering all the documents but that process has fortunately finished by now. Universities that I apply to are located in Bonn, Darmstadt, and Tübingen. I am not quite sure how good my chances are or which one I would prefer, should I get to choose.

                  1. 2

                    How does applying to universities work in Germany? Is it similar to the US? Can you just pick any school in Germany that has a program you’re interested in and apply?

                    1. 1

                      Yep, that’s pretty much it. Although the universities have the ability to select their students, and some also require a written entrance exam to measure how big the discrepancies are. I guess the universities in the US do pretty much the same. A notable exception is the enrollment for bachelor’s degress, where in some courses you have a guaranteed spot as long as you hand in all required documents.

                      What makes the process different is that in Germany the hierarchies of universities are a bit more subtle than in the US, as there are only little private insitutions. Thus, it makes sense to look at the publications of the working groups, but I found it hard to draw a good conclusion from just that as I am not that experienced in academic work.

                      1. 2

                        Numerus clausus is no longer a thing?

                        1. 1

                          Didn’t think that it’s really important, in most technical programs they do not exist nowadays. But yes, they still exist for medicine or psychology.

                  2. 3

                    Going to be at Gophercon. Please say hi if you will be there as well!

                    1. 2

                      @!Work

                      Interviewing a lot of candidates. Most of them are run of the mill, but one’s kind of a funny story. Our standard practice is to send a coding challenge and then, in person, ask them to iterate on it. Usually it’s in a language we use, like Ruby or JS, and less often it’s in a language that we don’t use but at least a couple of people know well, like Java or Python. Last week somebody submitted a challenge, which was well-organized with clear documentation and great design… and was written in Perl 5. So, my Friday was a little like this:

                      • Me: “Okay okay okay so I found out that we can use graphviz to design our new system let’s document everything in graphviz!”
                      • Boss: “You really like niche tools? What about niche languages?”
                      • Me: “uh oh”

                      So now I’m learning Perl 5 on the company time.

                      @!Fun

                      I have a bad habit of getting excited about an idea, doing half the work involved, and wandering off. Taking this week to gather some of the side projects I talked about here and see them to completion. I’m seeing it as a discipline exercise.

                      1. 1

                        Hah, Perl 5 is now niche. Man, at my last job a mere 5 years ago, everything was in Perl, although they were slowly moving to Python. I expect they still have a lot of Perl running around, though.

                      2. 2

                        I finished my data size optimisations for now. Turns out that 8bit horizon maps are good enough and PNG crushes them, so they went from 34MB to 2MB, and increasing the collision quadtree bottom level size from 1x1 to 2x2 shrunk them from 26MB to 7MB. Total initial download is now back under 20MB, which is good enough for the time being. I knocked off a few more minor todos, and was able to push a new release, which was the first to include a Linux client.

                        Since then I’ve fixed the OSX client but it runs like trash because OpenGL on OSX sucks, and I built an installer (MUCH easier than on Windows) but the launcher aborts immediately when it tries to update to a root owned directory. If anyone knows common causes of GL slowness on OSX please let me know.

                        I also added a fake shader to my skybox shader. It’s not accurate and the terrain/fog lighting has not been updated yet but I still think it looks quite good.

                        Next to do is fixing the (very basic) multiplayer and adding player physics so it starts to resemble a playable game. I have a very very nice cache-aware + SIMD optimised ray vs quadtree test which I will probably write up at some point too.

                        1. 2

                          I got a Raspberry Pi recently, I am hoping to get Alexa on it and have a Voice Assistant at home.

                          1. 2

                            Doing a deep dive into device trees, the boundary layer between hardware layout and software drivers.

                            It all hurts.

                            ps: At the risk of stating the obvious…. there exists a devicetree mode for emacs on melpa.

                            1. 2

                              Making a configuration language because we totally need another one and there’s definitely not enough of them :D It’s for an upcoming container/jail runner project… yeah there’s not enough of them too…

                              Recently I’ve contributed FreeBSD (often actually BSD in general) compatibility fixes to several hipster shells and helped one of the ion maintainers with job control. (Now ion doesn’t build on FreeBSD again, but because of a dependency :D Working on that now.)

                              Also added a gallery layout to my over-engineered personal website engine to make the photos page look nice.

                              1. 2

                                Learning Golang! I’m a devops/infrastructure engineer with a background in C/C++ and Python, and a bunch of our internal apps are written in Go so I thought I’d give it a spin. I’ve been following A Tour of Go.

                                1. 2

                                  concepts around a learner / active learner in the form of a mobile game which measures (precision/recall) quality of labeling

                                  1. 2

                                    I’m working on making CryptPad (open source encrypted collaboration https://cryptpad.fr/ ) more usable. It’s an uphill battle because we are developers (and crypto developers at that) so even though I know how important usability and design is, I’m still not able to make any decisions of value without a designer to hold my hand. It’s a learning experience.

                                    1. 1

                                      Furnishing my 19” 9U cabinet in the wake of moving in to the new house. Fiber in from the ISP, then cat6 on to the rooms and coax to the tv wall.

                                      Also, hoping to get my ALSA bindings for Common Lisp usable by Friday.

                                      1. 1

                                        Where do you live that you have fiber and can I come live with you?

                                        1. 1

                                          Western Norway… the current plan is capping it at modest 100/100 though. And I could at least find some beer in the fridge - when we get the fridge that is!

                                      2. 1

                                        Developing my first product.

                                        I posted the pitch for the Pocket Gopher’s Guide to JSON last week. Now I just need to bring it into existence.