30 Jul 2003 ladypine   » (Journeyer)

Back from OLS

Just came back from OLS. Ottawa is a beautiful city indeed, though I have not seen much of it. I found many of the lectures hard to understand, and in general I might say the lectures were divided to really good ones and really bad ones.

Mat Porter gave a very good overview of porting, though it was highly technical and I got lost on the way. I wish I could understand it fully- this is how a porting lecture should look like.

Paul Mackerras's lecture had a very smooth bottom line: optimizing based on reading the code only (without profiling) may end up gaining nothing in performance.

Patricia Gaughen was insipring: she made me want to get there and try to solve those problems: for example, make it possible to migrate pages between NUMA nodes, at first withought trying to optimize it. Though at the BOFS somebody said that it is posible to migrate pages, only it turned out inefficient: in that case, that is a very tingelling research problem, of when to migrate pages.

Rik Van Riel of course gave a hit lecture, called Towards an O(1) VM. Although I lost him in the middle (as he said himself, seeing the amount of people in his lecture, he could not expect everyone to know his way in the VM: there are not that many people who fully understand it!), I enjoyed his talk very much.

Meeting people I heard of on lkml, people I heard of from mulix, and hackers from all around the world was an interesting experiance, though not always easy. The standard view of the lounge was of people with their nose up their computer (wireless internet was available freely, and an email garden was established). Making eye contact is a mighty hard job, when people never look at you. The gpg signing was a good ice breaker, but unfortunately I was late with submitting my finger print.

Still, I met benh, lmb, sarnold, zwane and behdad, who were all very fun to be with.

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