Tuesday, January 30, 2007

What have I been upto?

I've spread myself quite thin, with a lot of code to write, books to read, things to buy and documentation to write.

For now, I have started reading Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs. I've started reading it, don't skip the foreword or the preface. Be patient with the author and go read it, it's fun!

Meanwhile, I hope to get back to productive coding soon, instead of just reading hundreds and hundreds of papers.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

One of the hardest problems software faces today

I think the biggest problem is to get users to read the documentation associated with the software.

Try answering these questions and score yourself.

  1. How many times have you seen a question about a problem being repeated?
  2. Why do you they created FAQs?
  3. How many FAQs have you read?
  4. What was the last release notes you read?
  5. Which book did you read last (not related to your course)?
  6. What new techniques did you read and discover in the last two years?
  7. What kind of documentation did you write and share for your last project?
  8. What was the last software manual you read?
  9. What was the ratio of comments to code in
  • Programs you wrote
  • Programs you read

The answers to these questions might not be a simple yes or no, but it will give you a fair idea of how we programmers are lazy and totally ignore documentation.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Some pictures from our New year and Lohri celebration (A Story!)

Me and my gorgeous wife before we left for the new year party

I sparked off the Lohri celebrations

Popcorn and Peanuts in fire
A Lohri ritual

The flames got higher, lohri had now begun

Ritual walk around the fire

The crowd got bigger as the flames got higher

My brother enjoyed the heat

My in-laws got involved as well
(My brother-in-law, his wife and son)

I had to keep encouraging people

The last round

There was only so much firewood!

It was time for dinner
(The chef was ready!)

Dinner was served, the food was awesome!

My wife's nephew, he came, he saw

He bowed!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Happy Lohri

Mufli ki khusbu, gurh ki mittaas
Makki ki roti aur sarson ka saag
Dil ki kushi aur apno ka pyar
Mubarak ho apko Lohri ka thyohar!

If the whole thing bounced over you, see http://www.lohrifestival.org/. We are celebrating our first Lohri

Friday, January 12, 2007

Article: A Conversation with John Hennessy and David Patterson

Read A Conversation with John Hennessy and David Patterson published in ACM Queue. It's one of the best articles, I've read lately. They talk about the challenge with parallelism, the free ride software has had, their new book, new projects and much more.

I highly recommend reading the article

Sunday, January 07, 2007

It's prediction time!

It's come a little late this year, but here goes anyway. The list includes technology, business and other predictions for the year 2007

  1. Apple will go back to using the PowerPC
  2. Intel will gain an upper hand over AMD in the 64 bit space
  3. Microsoft (R) Vista (TM) will not be widely accepted, people will expect too much from it
  4. Internet Explorer 7 will do well, but will begin to loose out gradually towards the end of the year
  5. India, Dravid, Chappel and Tendulkar will have a rather forgivable (we'll loose out before the semi-finals) world cup
  6. The world will get ready to move to 128 bit computing, there will be rapid growth towards 1024 bit computing machines
  7. Adobe, Google and Apple will continue to do well
  8. Open source movement will slow down for this year

These predictions are not very scientific, they are based on gut feeling. Feel free to comment on any of the predictions. I'll try and keep the list up to date or add your predictions if I really like them

Monday, January 01, 2007

Have A Great New Year!

Let's all welcome the new year with a big smile! I hope it turns out to be a great year for us, our families and friends, and all of mankind. There are so many things to do, so let's get started!

Dynamic programming for the binomial coefficient

More fun things, this time with some visualisation of what happens when memoisation is used and what happens when we don't. I don'...