Older blog entries for sits (starting at number 5)

5 Mar 2002 (updated 5 Mar 2002 at 20:57 UTC) »

John Tucker, Department head of Computer Science at Swansea.
John Jones, BT Ignite Web Services
Alan Cox, Redhat Linux Developer
Dick Porter, Ximian Developer

Tucker: Delighted to see people. Discussions of milestones in computing such as Fortran, Visicalc. There is an invisible part to the world of software development. Many transformations over the past 50 years.

Charles Symmoney (creator of Microsoft Word, Excel). The founder of Adobe. Creator of visicalc which was later surpassed by Lotus. Jeff Raskin. Only well known by those who have been forced to study the arcane history of software.

John then went to to talk about how the two speakers did lots of work at university(?) and that the Swansea Univeristy Computer Society was a nuturing ground for program development.

John Jones: Ignite is part of the reformation of BT. Talked about how an Internet based business should no longer have location as a barrier. Ignite was started in 2000. Many web hosting companies are suffering because they are running out of power and only offered one hotel like service. BT Ignite offers end to end services.

£100,000 investment in building in Cardiff Bay. Awareness of what is on our doorstep. Delighted to sponsor this and many more events.


TUcker: Big place is increasingly weired up. Alan Cox graduated from Swansea in 1991 and Dick in 1992. Brief plug for itwalesonline newsletter.

Alan Cox: Doing Things Differently Linux, Past, Present and Future

When I was at university peole told me that you needed to work hard and have a plan. However, the reason why I started working on Linux was because I was trying to improve a game I was writing.

People used to throw software in with hardware but this changed wwith Bill Gates when he started to threaten hobbiests who were sharing his BASIC interpreter.

Unix was started by AT&T (and was originally designed to play the game Space War, proving that all good software is originally designed to run games). Originally it was readily available because AT&T were to open their work because they were overcharging and running a monopoly.

Many operating systems courses are often 20 years out of date. Unix licences were expensive so it was not possible to show students the currently in use techniques.

Talked about the development of Uzi and Steve Hosgood's OMU.

5 Mar 2002 (updated 5 Mar 2002 at 20:52 UTC) »

Summary of Alan Cox lecture to come...

1 Mar 2002 (updated 2 Mar 2002 at 12:23 UTC) »

Finally got around to posting again. This was mostly brought on because I hope to write up the upcomming Alan Cox lecture that will be taking place at Swansea University on the 5th. I would have posted it to NTK if I had remembered in time.

One of the things that put me off posting regularly to advogato is the erratic connection I get to it. It often takes several attempts to actually be able to log in without timing out (although the front page doesn't seem to be so slow). I guess that's what happens with privately run popular websites.

Telsa was very right about something at the SUCS Christmas party (I'm not going to say what it was because my observation of human nature makes me think that it would be abused).

Almost forgot to post that I'm not SUCS president any more. I passed on the postion at Christmas (what with this being my final year and everything).

2 Dec 2001 (updated 2 Dec 2001 at 16:30 UTC) »

Well I spent most of yesterday updating (but not really upgrading because I did a format) platinum (the sucs X server) from a Ximianed RedHat 7.1 to a vanilla RedHat 7.2. The main reasoning behind this as so that I could get some practice at upgrading before I tried it on silver (which is on RedHat 6.2). This was made all the more difficult because I was missing bits of information that were hard won the last time it was upgraded.

The installation mostly consisted of backing up /etc/ to our other server and then putting in the required network boot disks.

Having said that I am especially fond of the way I mounted the isos as directories on our ftp server and then killed off the ftp connection so I could unmount the first cd and mount the second cd in the same place, thus allowing the installation to continue.

The major pitfall surfaced after I had gone back home At around 11pm I received a mail saying that internet access to certain sites was no longer working (and that the upgrade was to blame. Incredibly perceptive users here). After doing a painful remote X session to my computer back at home to confirm the problem, I decided to check the logs and found them full of can't find /lib/modules/2.4.7 errors.

After reading fxn's reply to yesterday's rant about certification, I now realise that I was approaching Advogato (gah I'm still having trouble spelling that) in slightly the wrong direction. More on that at a later date though...

It was about then that I remembered that I hadn't rebooted after installing the newer kernel package. After rebooting and not being able to connect to platinum any more I came to the conclusion that maybe I should have checked grub's configuration before I decided to reboot. It was also about then that I decided that I'd had enough of this and that I would go to bed.

1 Dec 2001 (updated 1 Mar 2002 at 23:29 UTC) »

Hmm. I am still a bit confused as to what I should have put on my page to make other people's lives easier and certify me:

  • Do I certify myself to give people a better idea of how what level I am at?
  • Do I certify other people who are already certified in order get their attention and certify me?
I have read the through the Adavogato trust metric page and I do not understand why people repeatedly certify Alan as a Master. Don't misunderstand me - I know that Alan does great work and should be at the Master level, but he is one of the seed accounts so my rating him as a Master is not going to make any difference right?

I have been reading Telsa's diary and she seems to suggest that you should display links to all the projects you have worked on. Are there any newbie guides to Advogato? I did a quick google search but I didn't turn up anything.

I've just realised I can help people quantify how much work I did on mozilla. If you do a Bugzilla search for Sitsofe Wheeler then you will have a better idea. Please note: that link shows the number of bugs I added a comment to - not the number that I reported, or were duplicates etc.

30 Nov 2001 (updated 1 Dec 2001 at 11:13 UTC) »

Well, this is my first diary entry. I have contributed a small amount the free software (if you use Mandrake then you may notice my name in the RPM changelogs of two packages, if you look hard enough) and I was also a Mozilla tester a while back. Anyhow let's see how this goes and whether any one will certify me...

While I'm here, I guess I should mention that I'm the current president of SUCS - The Swansea University Computer Society. Just for the record, no I don't know anything about Linux's TCP/IP stack. That was all done by Alan. Sorry.

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