Behdad Esfahbod's daily notes on GNOME, Pango, Fedora, Persian Computing, Bob Dylan, and Dan Bern!

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McEs, A Hacker Life
Saturday, April 01, 2006
 Various Misc Points Redux

Frysk and SystemTap: These two I've wanted to blog about for quite a while. SystemTap is a DTrace clone (Ok, not clone), while Frysk is an "intelligent, distributed, always-on system monitoring and debugging tool". Just check out their screenshots, I can't explain. Both projects are highly under development at Red Hat, and I can't wait until getting them running after upgrading to FC5. Frysk specifically looks so cool that we may not envy Apple's Shark in the future anymore :).

HarfBuzz: Spent the entire night last night (Thursday night I mean) refactoring and rebranding the OpenType Layout code that was in pango/opentype and imported it into a new repository on fd.o. This 17kloc code is the single most complex C code I've seen. The complexity is to be blamed on the OpenType standard, not the implementation though.

Spam: Rich, The biggest advantage of having your own domain and using different email addresses per site is that you identify spam from nonspam from the To: address easily. For example if I see an email claiming to be from, which is sent to any address of mine other than at, I know where to send it. That also helps figuring out who's leaking my addresses to spammers. Today's first of month, time to get password reminders from mailman's around the world, eh? I received two password reminders from an Iranian who had subscribed two addresses of mine that I use in JavaScript files that I publish. Bastard! I checked out his homepage too, and he has even translated ESR's How To Become A Hacker, yet he gathers email addresses on the net to spam. I wonder if he knows what ESR means by "hacker"...

GUADEC: Registration is open now, hurry up. And reserve accomodation in the GNOME village! I ended up submitting a proposal for a Pango/fontconfig talk in the last minute. Also submitted a performance hackfest and a performance BOF too, which compliment federico's performance talk. I'm also cohosting two other sessions, one on SIL technologies, another Danilo's i18n/L10n hackfest. Extreme fun guaranteed. I better make it this year...

CN Tower: There are two days every year that you can climb up the CN Tower. It's "free", but you have to raise 50CAD! Typical NorthAmerican "free" offers... Anyway, after letting a few of them pass by, I decided to climb this time, so I'm going to raise funds out of my own pocket if need be, but you can help by sponsoring me here. :-D

Tanenbaum: On Wednesday Andrew Tanenbaum was talking in the CS department about MINIX3. Nothing new, same old "my tiny kernel is better than the 50mloc Windows and 2.5mloc Linux" thing. He has developed quite a sense of humour though. To point out just three of his jokes:

You said:
same old "my tiny kernel is better than
the 50mloc Windows and 2.5mloc Linux" thing

Why is it that a-nobody has to make derogatory comments about a-somebody? Lets match your achievements up against his; you loose.

This is my first visit to your blog and with the level of comment made it will probably be the last.
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