350 reputation
16
bio website
location New Jersey
age 28
visits member for 5 years, 3 months
seen yesterday

I'm a programmer, occasional sysadmin, Unix automator, and general geek living in New Jersey (but in the general sphere of New York City).

The majority of my code is written in Perl (my weapon of choice) but I'm also familiar with C, JavaScript, and Bourne sh and bash. I also have some passing familiarity with (or ancient memories of) Java, C++, Python, Prolog, BASIC, older flavors of Visual Basic, and more.

I dabble in Haskell but I've never thrown a real problem at it.

I run Linux at home and at work but that doesn't mean I'm ignorant of other systems :)


Dec
6
comment What is the little twist in this floppy ribbon cable for?
yeah, the info was more for @fluffy than you I guess :)
Dec
6
comment What is the little twist in this floppy ribbon cable for?
The rest of the pins (read and write data, stepper motor control, head select, etc.) are bussed in the normal fashion, which is why the drive select pins are so critical. A drive has to ignore all input and produce no output when it's not selected.
Dec
6
comment What is the little twist in this floppy ribbon cable for?
The pins are in fact "Drive Select A", "Drive Select B", "Motor Enable A", and "Motor Enable B". The twist swaps Drive Select A<->B (pins 14 and 12, respectively) and Motor Enable A<->B (pins 10 and 16, respectively). All are outputs on the floppy controller and inputs on the drives.
Dec
3
answered Renaming Linux files that accidentally have multiple .mp3 extensions
Nov
11
comment How do web-servers “listen” to IP addresses, interrupt or polling?
@Aron it doesn't make much difference to the stuff that's described in this answer — instead of many threads each blocking on their own events, you have one thread blocking until it gets any event, but the principle is still the same.
Nov
4
awarded  Commentator
Nov
4
comment How come one user can delete another user's 755 files?
@supercat it's not incredibly common, but it is correct. Consider the st_nlink ("number of hard links") field in struct stat. Put simply, directories hold hard links to files.
Oct
16
comment What do you call the area on a hard disk smaller than a sector?
@supercat (that accurately describes RLL codes, which are actually out of date for hard drives, but I don't have good information on the coding techniques used with PRML. They still have to guarantee enough transitions for clock recovery somehow.)
Oct
16
comment What do you call the area on a hard disk smaller than a sector?
@supercat the data is self-clocking, there isn't such an issue. A series of bits gets turned into a series of reversals. Each reversal is constrained to lie within a minimum and a maximum number of clocks of its neighbors. The variations within that range allow the data to be decoded, but the constraints allow the clock to be recovered.
Oct
16
comment What do you call the area on a hard disk smaller than a sector?
Besides that the statement "any area that is magnetised represents a binary 1 and any area that is not magnetised represents a binary 0" isn't true at all (even MFM, from the 1970s, was more complicated than that), how are these areas anything like transistors?
Sep
24
awarded  Autobiographer
Sep
10
comment How does domain name registration work?
(and TUCOWS was one of the biggest collections of shareware on the internet, rather than one of the biggest domain registrars...)
Sep
10
comment How does domain name registration work?
@AshBurlaczenko nothing — in the 1990s, Verisign was the only registrar you could buy from. I believe they still offer the same pricing they did then: $35/year for the big three TLDs, with a two year minimum.
Sep
4
comment Can other people on an encrypted Wi-Fi AP see what you're doing?
WPA-PSK really doesn't use a secure key-exchange protocol to establish session keys?
Jan
23
comment Why is there such a big difference between “Size” and “Size on disk”?
(Less technically, it's just called "slack".)
Jan
23
comment Why is there such a big difference between “Size” and “Size on disk”?
The wasted space due to minimum allocation sizes is actually technically called "internal fragmentation", so you could say that fragmentation is the culprit. But it's still not something that any "defragment" tool can do anything about.
Jan
8
awarded  Critic
Oct
8
awarded  Yearling
Jul
4
answered How to run linux 0.01?
Jan
2
answered Setting up scripts in Amazon EC2 Cloud