Rough Book

random musings of just another computer nerd

Category: Work

Sorry for the delay

I’m really sorry for not updating this journal for… well, seems like forever. I figured I’d start writing regularly but that turned out to not be the case. A few things got in my way. Ever since I started working at Infusionsoft, I’ve had less of a desire to come back home and sit at the computer… again. The reason being, that most of my code-cravings are taken care of at work. Seriously, I love it. As a result I don’t really feel like coming back home and sitting in front of the computer.

The second thing was that my parents were here for a long time, and so I was spending most of my time with them. Then what else… oh yes, there was a thunderstorm and the power went out and my server decided that it didn’t recognize the NIC it had recognized for the past four years. So I went and bought a new one, and as soon as I plugged it in, it recognized the old one. I love computers. Then of course, there’s the fact that I was just pretty lazy. For some insane reason I decided that I wanted to upgrade the server to FreeBSD 7.0 and then I kinda just dragged my foot on setting everything else up.

Finally, there was my getting deployed again. Yeah, you read that right. I was going to Iraq… again. I pretty much found out about it around the time of my WLC training. So there was all the preparation for that. I really wasn’t looking forward to going (who does, anyway?) but I figured I had to (all that duty stuff, raising my right hand, taking the oath). However a few weeks ago I found out that I really didn’t have to go. As it turned out it hadn’t been two years since I got back and so I had the option of not going. So I told my readiness NCO that I didn’t want to go. I have my career to think of, and I think one tour in Iraq is more than enough. I was pretty torn when I had to make that decision. It took me about half a second to decide what I wanted to do. Part of me almost wanted to say “yes”. But I think this is the better decision.

Anyway, I just wanted to let you all know that I’m alive and that I’m definitely going to try and write more frequently on this journal. I’m doing a lot of exciting things at work and I’d like to be able to write about them. So, until next time…

A lot of stuff

I didn’t update this site for a while because I had a lot of stuff going on. A lot happened towards the end of last year. My house was destroyed, and then it was rebuilt. While that was going on, I also lost my job when Intel decided to “redeploy” my entire group. I was offered an option to look for positions within the company, but I declined. I honestly wasn’t doing as much programming as I would have liked, so I decided to look for jobs outside Intel. I interviewed with Google and didn’t get in despite doing really well (their words) on the phone and in-person interviews. I got a call back from the recruiter who said that “although the interviewers really liked you and thought that you were incredibly smart and knowledgeable, they didn’t feel that your skills are a good match for the position”. I thought it was a standard “Thanks, but no thanks” response and I was a little disheartened. To be honest, my faith in my own skills and knowledge was a little shaken. I talk to my friend Iliyan (he works and google and he’s the one who actually referred me) and he said that they were actually telling the truth. Apparently, at Google they try to match you up pretty well with your job. If they feel that you don’t match up with the position, they don’t offer it. He said that if I had applied to Google and Mountain View, instead of Phoenix, I would have received an offer for sure. He also let them know that they made a mistake in not hiring me. Either way, I wasn’t all that depressed.

I got a few more offers and did a few more interviews before finally accepting a position at Infusion Software. They basically write CRM (Content and Resource Management) Software for small businesses. They are a relatively new company. I have been here for a month and I’ve been loving it since my first day. The first day I walked in, they basically said “Here’s your system. Pick an OS and install it and set up your development environment”. I was like “Awesome!”. Of course, I set up PC-BSD (which is basically a FreeBSD distro). The environment at Infusion Software is very energetic and fast-paced. The demographic is also rather young. During my interview they showed me around and when I got to the developer room, they showed me a projector and said “This is where we play Halo or Guitar Hero 3 when we need to take a break”. ‘Nuff said. I’m glad everything eventually worked out. I was rather stressed after my house got wrecked, and to add to it, I got laid-off. The way my friend Suhrid puts it. “You have the weirdest luck in the world. Really bad stuff happens to you, but then something really cool happens after that to make it better than before… you got to remodel your home for a great price, and you got a better job!”

My parents came down for a month at the beginning of January. My mom’s staying behind to help me set up the house. Of course, because of that I had to tell my girlfriend that she couldn’t come over anymore (this is all true, yes it is). Oh yeah, so I’m renting out my house. My parents had bought a house here that they don’t live in. So I’ve basically moved over there. It’s a bit of a drive to places, but nothing too bad.

Oh yes, I finally got to put my citizenship to use. Yes, I voted in the primaries. I registered as Republican so I could vote for Ron Paul. Let’s just say that I believe in a lot of what he says because I identify myself as Libertarian. I know a lot of people said that he wasn’t going to win, but that wasn’t the point. This country needs to change. It’s constitutionally a multi-party system, but the only parties that matter are the Republicans and Democrats and they haven’t been doing anything for this country. The current administration has done a great job of ignoring that piece of paper this country was founded up. The subtle erosion of Civil Rights alarms me. We need to remember what this country was founded upon. Honest, law-abiding citizens should have no fear of their government. That is why I support Ron Paul. It is besides the point that he didn’t win. We need to challenge the current situation. We need to change the current situation. Of course, the idiotic media ignored Ron Paul and didn’t even talk about him. Despite that, the man was able to garner a large and loyal following through the internet. What that says is that there are people who are willing to listen and who want to listen and who want change. The sad truth is that the people with big pockets, and big media exposure get all the attention, and not the people with the good ideas. I hope that in time his ideas will prevail. I hope in time Americans will realize that this country needs to get back to its roots.

That’s about it. I’m going to try and update this blog a little more frequently, but no promises.

Work, Moving, Halloween, Unknown Girlfriend

So it’s October. I should be moving to my house this month if everything goes well. I am not looking forward to moving. I hate moving. I really wish we had Star Trek transporters. I could just transport all my stuff over there. Seriously.

What else? Work is cool. I am writing some neat perl scripts and pretty soon I think I might get to do some C. Sometimes I feel that I shouldn’t enjoy my job so much. Most people don’t. What if this means I will hate it a lot later? I really should stop being so paranoid and suspicious. Yeah so that’s pretty much what’s happening at work. It’s fun and I work with a great bunch of people.

I can’t wait for Halloween. I don’t know if I posted this before, but I got myself a Halloween costume. It’s a DS9 Star Trek Costume. Captain Sisko’s, so it’s the command uniform (red shoulder). I even got a communicator that beeps and says “Bridge Here, Status Report” when you press it. It sounds like Worf, or some dude who’s voice has been slowed down, or maybe the battery on the thing is dying. Yeah, so this whole thing screams “NERD!”. I don’t care. Hey, I enjoy it and it’s fun for me. If it pisses you off, then I don’t give a crap.

I have an unknown girlfriend. I have no idea who this girl is. If any of you see her, please tell her to call me. Or maybe she expects me to call her seeing as I have never called her. Everyone seems to think I have a girlfriend. They keep asking me about my “girlfriend” or “girlfriends”. I can only give them a blank look and go “Uhhh… girl… who?”.

That’s pretty much it.

Lost Badge

Talk about a crazy way to lose my Intel badge. I was walking into the elevator when it fell down and into the crack between the external elevator doors and the elevator car. What are the odds?

Intel and Artificial Life

This is my fourth day at Intel. I think I will enjoy working here. I haven’t done much yet though, and I still don’t know exactly what it is I am supposed to be doing. I tested some 140 chips yesterday, but that wasn’t too much work. My supervisor is out until Tuesday, so until then I am doing some odd jobs and reading up some documentation about the platforms and tools we use. I am excited to be working here. It looks like it’s going to be hard work, but I think it will also be fun.

Now about the Artificial Life. I have written up some specs on an Artificial Life program. This is different from earlier ones. I am implementing the “creatures” like assembly programs. This code is their “DNA”. It describes how they behave. A “God Program” executes one instruction of each “creature” and moves on to the next. Sort of like a pre-emptive multitasking operating system. The creatures all live in a two-dimensional area of memory. They can reproduce, and there is chance of error during reproduction.

I think I was going about it the wrong way earlier. I was trying to describe behaviour through variables and through discrete quantities. Now, I represent each creature as a bit-pattern – exactly like an assembly program. I have instructions for moving, eating, moving and attacking, reproducing, and sleeping. In addition, I have some very basic branches and loops. So based on the bit pattern, the creature has a certain behaviour. Also, changes in the bit-pattern can cause changes in behaviour. They can be subtle, or drastic. At least, that is what I believe. I need to actually implement my idea before I can find out! My God program is essentially an operating system, and the “creatures” are tasks. There’s a little more to all of this, but I can’t write it all here. If and when I finish the program, I will make a separate page for it and describe it in detail.

I am thinking of calling this program “Eden”. Anyway, that’s all for now!

Whoa

I had my very first code review. It was interesting and slightly unnerving. I had all these people who had gone over my code, tell me what was wrong with it. Luckily, nothing too serious! Just minor issues. I learnt some new stuff though.

THEN, I found out that my highschool friend is GETTING MARRIED! Yeah, he’s getting engaged this year… Crazy stuff… I can’t believe it…

Look Ma! I’m on TV!

They did a video interview of the interns at Motorola today. They asked me some questions about the internship. It is a promotional video for the Embedded Systems Consortium. They want to show others how much the interns are learning.

Doing things that are probably illegal

Ok, so if comments aren’t showing up, it’s because of newlines… I need to fix that. I thought I had taken care of it, but apparently not… hmmm…

Anyway, at work I am trying to tunnel through our proxy. M$ has to screw everything up with the proprietary NTLM authorization. Stupid Microsoft. I probably shouldn’t be trying to tunnel through the corporate proxy. Well, tough. They should let me have access to everything I want access too.

This is probably why people say I shouldn’t be let anywhere near a computer. Oh come on! That’s just a major overreaction.

httptunnel

I’m finally able to ssh to my machine at home from work! We have a proxy that doesn’t let me ssh to anything outside the corporate network. So I found out about this thing called httptunnel that let’s you forward connections from your local machine, to the proxy, and from the proxy to a specific port on your server. I set up a server running on one of the ports on my FreeBSD machine and then ran the client program from here to forward all connections from port 22 on the localhost to the proxy. The proxy then takes the information from the client and connects to the port on the FreeBSD machine where the daemon is listening. Pretty sweet!

Crazy Semester

My last semester and SO much to do. It looks like I will be writing code 24-7… not too bad. I need to get a job… a REAL one… citizenship… a house… AAARRGHH SOO MUCH TO DO! And then there’s CSE521 – I am sooo tempted to drop it…

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