Friday, September 02, 2011

Mark All As Read

I am a fan of “Zero Inbox” system. It means that my Outlook, Gmail and Hotmail (each one is used for different purposes) all stand on zero emails in Inbox.

Well, apart from Gmail which is based on search so the emails are just left there to rot.

Zero inbox means less worries for me, less things to remember, better response time for other people and less black pixels on my screen. I am a happy user.

There was something that bothered and nagged me though. Google Reader. I was struggling to get it under 100 unread messages and lost the battle most of the time. I always wondered:

What am I missing there? Maybe the next unread item is the most interesting one? Reader always dragged my attention to it, as there are always more stuff to read and (probably to learn).

Well, not anymore! I’ve seen the future and it is called” Mark All As Read” button

Google Reader - MarkAllAsRead

There is always interesting stuff to read out there. However, the good part is that really interesting pieces will be linked, commented, re-linked and flamed all over the Internet. It is REALLY hard to miss them. Should I worry then that one of the “marked as read” items is a ground-breaking, world-changing, socks-blowing one?


I have a zero unread items in Google Reader now and I am happy.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Taste Matters!

I was listening to the latest “This Developers Life” podcast called Taste and it stroke a chord with me.

I remember arguing whether appearance matters at work with some guy from my previous gigs. His point was that it should not matter, as the most important thing is one’s brain and ideas. Needless to say he looked like a bum.

Ultimately, he is right. Looks probably should not matter. It does not matter in two cases:image

  • email communication. The other guy might be flesh eating alien or even a girl. I don’t care.
  • when your pal says: “This guy is genius! He sleeps in a garbage can, but he is brilliant!”

These two cases, you don’t care how the other person look like, in all other cases, however, you do care. 

While it is correct that well dressed person conveys a message, I think it is more important that sloppily dressed person not only does not transmits the same message, but he conveys a negative message. Being a bum is to tell your colleagues: “I don’t care about you. I can come with my pajamas, uncut fingernails and unwashed, but you STILL will listen to me!”

It is a very negative thing to say to your co-workers…

Monday, August 15, 2011

Civilized Programming Language

Code worked and stopped working after minor changes. All of the sudden a loop is not working anymore.

1 while(cursor != NULL)
2 {
3 printk("mock_config_cache: checking %x\n", cursor);
4 if (mock_compare_cache_devices((mock_cache_device_t*)cursor, new_cdev))
5 {
6 printk("mock_config_cache: Device already exists: %x\n", cursor);
8 mock_free(new_cdev);
9 break;
10 }
12 cursor = cursor->next;
14 if (cursor == cache_devices);
15 {
16 break;
17 }
18 }

It should be easy, but this is a kernel code, so I’ve spent 1.5 hours to debug this code. Even if it weren’t a kernel code, it is not always easy to attach a debugger and step through the code. I’ve added a loop to print the linked list, which is basically the same code:

1 /* DEB */
2 cursor = cache_devices;
3 while(cursor != NULL)
4 {
5 printk("Cursor: (%x), next: (%x), prev: (%x)\n", cursor, cursor->next, cursor->prev);
6 cursor = cursor->next;
7 if (cursor == cache_devices)
8 break;
9 }

The same code, but this one is working!

Another coffee and I see the bug. Line #13 in the first code:

1 if (cursor == cache_devices);

Notice the “;” at the end of the line! DAMN! This is frustrating!

Now, the compiler should have told me something, as the IF statement does not even have a side-effects!

These days I have read an article by Andrei Alexandrescu (C++ template guru) called: “The case for D”, where he praised D language as a better C/C++. Naturally, I wondered if D would do better in the above bug:

1 import std.stdio;
3 void main()
4 {
5 writeln("hello world");
7 int i=3;
8 if (i == 3);
9 {
10 writeln("another hello");
11 }
12 }

OK. Let’s see:

C:\Users\derbep\Documents\Code\DTest>dmd if_test.d

if_test.d(8): use '{ }' for an empty statement, not a ';'

Much much better! Advance to D! It is better!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Training went bad. Or good.


This is a picture of punch-a-sand-bag training session.

It actually felt good during the training and even after, despite discomfort, it feels good to commit to training.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Problem on the horizon

Phone rings. It is my friend Mor.

- Hi. We have a new startup thing going on. You have to join!

- What are you doing?

- Can’t tell yet. It is in a stealth mode.

- I have to sign NDA to know?

- Nope. We don’t tell anyone before they start working.

- (pause)… I see. Well, anyway, I’ve got the best job now. We are changing the world.

I forgot it a minute later. Few months later, an email:


We went to University together and I remember you as a good guy. I am founding a storage related startup and you have tons of experience. Why don’t you join us? “

It is flattering and all, but I can’t. I am busy improving the world with DirectAccess.

Alon: “We have a chair with your name on, when are you coming to use it?”

Me: “Thanks man! Not in a near future for sure.”

Then, it is Mor again:

- Hi, we still looking for people and your skills are required. Come talk to our VP of R&D.

- I am not looking, but I can hear the guy out. Chances that I will come are zero.

Then it is a previous company:

- We are growing and you should still remember the stuff. Come, you have a potential.

- I am not looking and I am good at my current place.

Then Mor’s company bites the dust. Then one of my previous bosses leaves the company:

- (Me): where are you going now?

- (Her): I am going to start a new project from scratch.

- (Me): what people are you looking for?


Once I said it, I understood that something is wrong. It was me asking for position in another company. The thought actually crossed my mind. It never did before despite long hours, frustrations, disappointments and job offers. Now it did.

The good thing is that I know there is a problem and problems I can fix…