Monday, January 19, 2009

programming languages that I still can't read:
  1. LISP (and scheme)
  2. C++ Templates

which suggests I need to take some time to really grok macros.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

debian linux: bigmem gives you highmem and you need it or you'll be missing memory

if you're running a debian system, make sure you have a bigmem kernel installed, like this one, or memory above (somewhat less than) 1GB will be ignored.

sudo grep -i memory /var/log/dmesg
[ 0.004000] Memory: 899224k/917504k available (1693k kernel code, 17724k reserved, 746k data, 320k init, 0k highmem)

sudo grep -i memory /var/log/dmesg
[ 0.004000] Memory: 2059204k/2087744k available (1834k kernel code, 27260k reserved, 788k data, 256k init, 1170240k highmem)

Now I can stop blaming firefox.

I've become convinced that this is a bug in Debian's 2.6.26 image. The previous version (2.6.24) had "highmem" (memory above 1GB) turned on even if "bigmem" (memory above 4GB) was turned off.
(I think. Someone should confirm this.)

Monday, January 12, 2009

mixed types

In scala, it's possible to mix parameterized types (e.g. TypeOne[T]) with inheritance (e.g. TypeOneTwo extends TypeOne[TypeTwo] )
but it's complicated.
Lesson learned: if it's possible to just pick one or the other (pure inheritance or pure parametrization), do so.

more on that later.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

gij is a bad citizen

I think I've found what was going on with my scala interpreter. The debian scala package depends on gij, the GNU Interpreter for Java. THIS IS BAD. I didn't notice it get installed, but suddenly everything that called java on my system was filling up system memory, going into swap, filling up the entire swap, and crashing. I suspect that if I install a version of scala that uses the real java interpreter, it won't use 1GB of RAM to call 'hello world'.
Come on debian. Java is GPL now. Let's get out of the ghetto.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

TO: larry drebes <>

Larry, I think it is despicable that the same company that was responsible for shepherding the OpenID 2.0 spec is now selling a proprietary product that capitalizes on the failures of that spec. I think it is obscene that the open source libraries that your company maintains[1] are now being pitched as excessively complicated[2] so that you can sell a proprietary wrapper for them. This is a fundamental conflict of interest.

~Jesse Wolfe