Recent blog entries for saugart

Yesterday (Saturday, May 8th), I accepted a position with vmware's new Cambridge, Massachusetts office, as technical employee # 2. One of their in-house recruiters saw the words "Virtual Machine" on my resume and decided that there must be a match. I'll probably start on Monday, May 23rd. So, after almost sixteen years away, I have finally returned to Cambridge.

I also had a competing offer from Mazu Networks, another fine firm with its headquarters in Cambridge. Where was either of these offers when I really wanted one in Los Angeles three years ago?

Thursday, March 31st was my last day as a contractor at IBM's T. J. Watson research center in Hawthorne, New York. I didn't properly set up new infrastructure outside of IBM for myself to use, and so I am only now back to having a Linux workstation that I can build Jikes RVM on! I still don't have a permanently connected server that I can run some of the Jikes RVM nightly tasks on in places where I can get to the results.

Since April 4th, I have been in Massachusetts, consulting on an (unfree) Personal Digital Video Recorder product that is implemented in real-time Java on top of Embedded Linux. Pretty cool, except for the proprietary software aspect of it. I like the people at Motorola's UCentric division, and I like what I'm learning there; I'll be sorry to say goodbye to them. But I'd be a fool to turn down VMware, which is offering me more money, better benefits, a better location, and more interesting work.

I sent in my resignation letter today. Tomorrow I'm driving in from home in New York to work in Maynard, Massachusetts. I don't know if they're going to want to keep me on for two weeks or to end the contract immediately; either way would be fair.

14 Jan 2005 (updated 14 Jan 2005 at 21:33 UTC) »

I libelled the Jikes Java-source-to-byte-code compiler in my diary entry of January 12th, 2005. Jikes seems to have done a fine job of building GNU Classpath; my troubles were almost certainly due to other causes, ones which I have still not fully tracked down. I apologize to the members of the Jikes project and retract that diary entry.

13 Jan 2005 (updated 14 Jan 2005 at 21:31 UTC) »
I retract my unfair accusations against the Jikes compiler. The problems I was experiencing were almost certainly due to other causes.

I have retroactively edited this diary entry to prefix it with this retraction, but am leaving the diary entry untouched.

--14 January 2005

Trying to get GNU Classpath 0.13+CVS and Jikes RVM to work together. Sigh; the Jikes compiler is not behaving very well these days. Jikes 0.21 [Here I meant 1.21 --14 Jan 2005] seems to be building a bogus version of GNU Classpath; ouch.

It's the first snow of the year here in New York. Whee.

I'm glad to see that Advogato is back up; I can post blog entries again now.

One of my software patents has been granted. Time to contact some sort of free patent foundation.

I've been sad for the past week, and not very interested in software. Nancy's pregnancy didn't take. Dimitri may end up being an only child.

I read Tom Tromey's blog entry on Planet Classpath, where he discusses concerns about large companies acquiring software patents and using them to stifle innovation.

I have three software patents pending, which I've filed for on my own. It is expensive -- several thousand dollars of legal fees each. I was working on them yesterday, wondering why I still bother, since the software startup that I started the applications for has long since folded. But I will grant a perpetual royalty-free license to them for any software that meets the Debian Free Software Guidelines.

Just uploaded my Debian Jikes RVM package to my personal FTP site for my Debian Mentor (Greg Prokopski, a.k.a. gadek) to look at.

I was disappointed to see that Debian's glibc apparently does not use the GS register to store per-thread data. This means that I had to compile a version of Jikes RVM that won't be capable of exploiting SMP processors. The correct fix to the problem would be to get rid of Jikes RVM's m:n threading. I wonder how much work that would be. It would solve other problems as well, since otherwise any JNI calls we do on such a platform may hang. However, a much better bet would be to finish the self-bootstrapping work that I paused in order to build the Debian packages before Sarge gets frozen.

I found out why I was so unenthusiastic about driving Dimitri up to Boston. I have a nasty cold of some sort -- been coughing up green mucus.

I spent much of the weekend resting.

Am still working on packing up Jikes RVM for Debian. My application to be a Debian Developer is currently holding, waiting for an AM.

I took my son, Dimitri, up to Boston for Easter and to visit with Dylan, his best friend from our old home in Los Angeles.

We might be able to go up and see Dylan again tomorrow or Saturday. But do I really want to drive another four hours each way (8 hours round trip) just so that he can see his friend? Do I care more about my convenience and my enthusiasm for hacking on Jikes RVM, or about my son's friendship? And how much will this matter a few months from now?

I certainly don't need to put in the hours at work; I've been putting in plenty of overtime.

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