Firday 15 June 2001

So what did I do today? Well, I had a play with pnginfo (which is part of pngtools), I tried to debug a silly WIndows NT service that keeps crashing on me at work, I helped someone with some signal handling code on a FreeBSD machine, and I had a tour of the Civic phone exchange.

The phone exchange had to be the highlight of the day — there is a lot of hardware there, like the $300,000 web cache machines for the Telstra internet backbone, and stuff like that. Then again, this is only the Canberra infrastructure and I am sure there is better stuff out there around Australia. It was sort of as I expected it to be though, really there is nothing to running a back bone — at least in the sense that is just a bunch of nice Cisco routers and that is about it. It’s not like there is magical machines or anything. I think that the main value in this sort of operation is the staff — the hardware is nothing amazing.

Anyway, now I am working on automating my generation of the comp.text.pdf FAQ. I have looked at faq-o-matic and things like that, and they don’t really do what I am after, so I am in the process of whipping up a nasty little perl hack. I am getting quite good at this perl thing. I think you know when you are starting to become comfortable in a language when you start to think that perhaps the problem you are looking at is a “perl problem”, or a “c problem”.

Anyway, charity trivia night tonight and then some work on my talk for tomorrow. Too much fun…