After resigning from Zarlink (and rejecting Google) I'm still unemployed! This is despite looking for five months. The IT sector in the UK/Europe seems to have collapsed in on itself, and apart from finance/public sector infrastructure projects, all work seems to be in either Digital TV or mobile phones. Unfortunately after working in digital TV for three years I'm looking for something different. Seriously if anyone knows of Linux kernel work that can be done from the UK please get in touch!
I've done a lot of tidying up on Squashfs (open source compressed filesystem) and I have made some major improvements to directory handling. When I originally wrote Squashfs I envisaged it mainly being used in embedded systems which tend to have filesystems with small(ish) directories. Due to this I limited directories to a maximum size of 512K and I knew handling of directories over 64K was slow. As with many things the uses that some people have put Squashfs to have surprised me, and I've had complaints where people have tried to archive directories with 100,000 + entries with Squashfs. Needless to say the original design didn't work terribly well! I've completely over-hauled the directory design, and I happy to say the next release can handle directories of many megabytes in size with no performance loss.
It probably goes without saying that the last few months of unemployment have shown the importance of having an open source project to work on. Before I started my open source work after leaving a company I had literally nothing to show for my years of work at the company, and no programming of importance to do until I got my new job. At least now with Squashfs I've had something to work on during the months of unemployment!