Older blog entries for deirdre (starting at number 24)

Had some fun at the Linux Expo, though I missed lilo, who I'd intended on catching up with. I read his diary entry. All I gotta say is, "Dude, and you thought *I* was being harsh sometimes." Not that I'm complaining. :) I noticed that, while most of the Linuxcare people I talked to were friendly, at least one marketing person avoided looking at me. But then, some of my slashdot comments hit pretty hard, didn't they?

Lilo's comments on large Linux companies I think reflect the fact that Linuxcare was a services company. I think large companies centered around Linux can work as long as the revenue model isn't reliant strictly upon open source.

Which brings me to TiVo. Shipping a box that is an embedded Linux system with some custom utilities is cool. I talked to a lot of people who didn't know that a TiVo was an embedded Linux box. It's not like we don't have our kernel patches up.

Even more amusing is the comments from Linuxcare folk about the TiVo. Not surprisingly, Andrew Tridgell has ported rsync to his.

I love it there. The only other company I've enjoyed working for as much (at least in recent memory) is Be. At TiVo, they'd rather have you in a different group than lose you, and people can and do move between groups. At my final days at Linuxcare, I offered to move groups and was refused. Another person also made the same request almost two months earlier and was refused. Linuxcare bled people and money, neither of which it could afford.

TiVo's being out of the mainstream of Linux though (at least culturally) has posed some problems for finding people. We are always looking; if you want to work there, email me. We're not looking for remote employees though. And please don't ask if I can get you a TiVo. I got quite enough of that at the show. We don't make money off the boxes, we make it off the service.

It's funny, but when I handed out TiVo business cards (which have, unlike Linuxcare, Your Choice Of Job Title on them), even people working for "cool" Linux companies all wanted them. I got a few resumes; I was being low-key, but I really did have my boss' explicit permission to go on a geek finding mission. And I suspect that TiVo's involvement in Linux events will be more official in the future.


Lilo, when I saw the ARM docs, they weren't on the Intel site but rather on the arm.co.uk site. It's been a while though, I haven't used the Netwinder much in the last year.

Been a while since I posted -- been really busy on UK stuff. Working on embedded stuff is more interesting than I'd expected and the people are great.

The project for this weekend: finally deploy data. The code's been done for a while but the data's not schlepped in yet.

Nice to be back in the Linux space again. After the short "Focus Shift Purple Heart" award-winning experience recently, ::shakes head:: well, it's good to be home, let's leave it at that.

I really like many (OK, most) of my former coworkers and we're all bummed we can't work together.

Off to Hawaii for some much-needed R&R this weekend.

Been depressed since the weekend. It's a long story. The upside is that Rick and I have decided to go to Conolulu, the annual Westercon (science fiction convention). But I feel so awful I can't even get excited about going to Hawaii in a month.

All I want to do today is knit. I'll probably go to the local knitting store for the evening's knit-in. At least there's something I typically want to do when I really feel down -- something that doesn't have the calories of ice cream. Then again, I could really go for some Krispy Kreme doughnuts, gluten reaction or no gluten reaction.

Some birdie suggested that I post a note for the ex-Linuxcare people, many of whom are on Advogato. There is a mailing list that's existed since the first departure from Linuxcare[1] called linuxcare-alumni. Former Linuxcare folk can join.

[1]: Roger Gregory of the Xanadu project, fired basically for calling his boss an asshole. Thus proving the point. Clearly Roger felt backed into a corner, but it became really apparent that the wrong person had been fired. Thus leading to the verbalization of Deirdre's Rule of Bad Managers[2].

While some might question my feelings on this matter, my fundamental assumption is that it is the role of a manager to help their employees GET the work done. An upset employee is not productive, thus the role of a manager is to deflate the situation and, if necessary, resolve it later. Instead, a shouting match ensued. This kind of thing happens when managers look at themselves as "over" or "superior to" their employees rather than seeing their role as simply having different responsibilities.

[2]: "Bad Managers almost always outlast good employees."

I ran into ESR the other night; he and Rick went to BayLISA and I went with my friend Vinnie and my mom. The talk was a howl.

Just reading a bit before doing more writing tonight. Deadlines loom.

I have to disagree with Elise about how good the last Baylinuxchix meeting was. In fact, I was seriously considering, given how lame it was, never going again. Let's just say it was all way too newage (rhymes with "sewage") for me. Elise mentioned two of the reasons I think it was so pathetic: tarot readings and bird burials, neither of which have to do with Linux or chix.

And, to my immense embarrassment and horror[1], Lile and Gail decided to go to DevCon and *have a panel* on how you didn't have to be male to be a hacker. No, and you don't have to be male to be a twit either. How about if you just produce some insanely cool piece of code? Or would that be so fscking difficult? ::rolls eyes::

For GOOD examples of group meetings, there was last week's FreeBSD meeting in Foster City. I've been to other good meetings of course, but that stands out as a recent example.

[1] Speaking as someone who makes a living as a coder.

Been doing a lot of BeOS hacking lately. My C++ was slightly rusty, but fortunately my recent PHP coding bouts had gotten me back in the habits of braces and semicolons. Perhaps some cool stuff to come out in the near future, but some of it I can't talk about.

Busy week this week, and depressed about my cat, who was injured (not badly, but he needed antibiotics). He had two infections and, it was pointed out, a heart murmur. It's the last part that is somewhat depressing.

Spent time learning more about programming for BeOS this week and, I must confess, it has really changed my opinion of the suitability of C++ for core libraries. Favorably.

My coauthor and I received the contracts for our book on Python thiss week. I'm quite excited.

Last night, Linuxstammtisch in Mountain View. As Seth says, Mountain View's not all that bad a place. Not all the peninsula or south bay cities have "charm clusters" like downtown MV, but there's a few that are OK. I'm now working in downtown Menlo Park, which isn't as charming but still pretty nice.

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