Hi, I'm Brian. I hack on software and hardware.
I've been writing operating systems for a living for 20-odd years now: BeOS @ Be, HiptopOS @ Danger, Android @ Android, then Google, Fuchsia/Zircon at Google, LK here and there. Various toy and experimental systems from time to time.
I grew up with the C64 in the early 80s and worry a lot about modern platforms being too closed and restrictive.
I am a fan of sci-fi and fantasy written, televised, animated, and gamed.
Pizza Delivery, Post Apocalypse
Not only did I bring this pie from the bottom to the top of the map, flat, fresh, and early, I also was carrying 2520kg of metals and ceramics (the largest single shipment I have yet seen -- it and the pizza and the carrier only fit in the truck because I had one crate of ceramics ride shotgun).
Death Stranding, mild spoilers up to early Ch 2
So a few friends have been playing Death Stranding and apparently enjoying it, so I decided to give it a look last night...
3 hours in (and nearly 2 of those were cutscenes, though I gather that's supposed to thin out toward the middle game?) and it appears that I am the only gig economy delivery and internet installation guy who can Save America (apart from all the other folks out there delivering packages and leaving the landscape cluttered with ladders, ropes, postboxes, etc)
America is in trouble because it's disconnected and because if a human corpse is not incinerated within 48 hours of death it can (a little fuzzy on exactly how or what's going on here) result in a city-destroy explosion. But it is not possible to cremate folks near cities because of the dangerous something or other they emit when burnt. How exactly this post-apocalyptic setting has survived some decades? with fancy high tech outposts being built up and staffed is a mystery to me. I expect it is one that will not be adequately explained.
So, the Last President of The United Cities of America (my mom!) has died and I have delivered her corpse to the giant incinerator facility near the city near the city that exploded when I couldn't help dispose of that other corpse in time. Some other relative of mine (maybe?) who is frozen in time (I think?) and held hostage by skull-mask-wearing left coast terrorists is now the President (working via holographic teleconference from whereever she's being held).
I am a bit confused as to what convinced my character to do this beyond a dream he had, after which he's completely bought in, except also griping about it. I'll interpret that as it's hard getting good work in the post-apoc gig-economy.
I am now off to Re-Connect America, which I think means I shall hike to the Pacific Coast in some amount of time that is absurdly unrealistically short for traversing a country that is much, much wider (and much much less full of mountains and fjords) than the development team appears to believe it is. Also Post Apocalyptic America calls all cities <Something> Knot City for Reasons.
I'm kinda having fun with the trekking across the landscape bits. I'm not terribly impressed by the writing. The setting is visually kinda neat.
So I've been hacking on this little RISC-V RV32I/RV32IM emulator as part of a toy compiler and bootstrap-the-world hobby computer project and it's been fun:
I saw on this other RV32IMAC emulator project linked on hackernews, which is similar, though a bit fancier (loads ELF files, emulates some linux syscalls, and is full of super fancy C++ that I find rather complex to follow). At the core though it's another small emulator, so somewhat interesting to see an alternate approach:
Now that the iCEBreaker FPGA campaign and pre-order fulfillment is completed. You can order iCEBreaker, Pmod and LED Panels in the regular 1BitSquared store! https://1bitsquared.com/collections/fpga
I've been getting familiar with the RISC-V ISA by writing a little simulator (and disassembler) for RV32I and getting it to pass riscv-compliance over the past week or so. I don't hate it.
Tamsyn Muir's *Gideon the Ninth* is the most fun thing I've read so far in 2019. A scifi/fantasy/horror/locked-room-mystery/adventure mashup reminiscent of a crazy JRPG setting. A massively enjoyable snarky swordswoman protagonist and her necromancer. Much mayhem. Many skeletons.
“Festooned with skeletons, aglitter with technonecromantic delights, both middle fingers raised to the galaxy, Gideon the Ninth is a gothy Tank Girl-Meets-Utena-Meets-Gormenghast dueling wildcard mashup that has me positively giddy for the future of the genre.” ―Max Gladstone
“Lesbian necromancers explore a haunted gothic palace in space! Decadent nobles vie to serve the deathless emperor! Skeletons!” ―Charles Stross
Dear everyone who is considering making a video of yourself talking rather than just writing the *exact same words* into a text file, a blog post or a PDF:
Unless you're specifically targeting people who literally cannot read...
Sincerely, A Person Who Doesn't Have Literal Free Hours To Hear You Slooooowly Say Something It Would Take Me Five Seconds To Read And Also I Can Ctrl-F It
You'd need to define that interface (I'm not aware of a generalized VM interface suitable for this), but if you think about what services libc generally needs (files, sockets, time, waiting on one or more of the aforementioned, etc) there aren't actually all that many and the surface area can be pretty constrained.
Once you have the concept of a handle you can read/write/close/waitfor and the ability to request a handle from a handle (connect), you're most of the way there.
i feel the same way about whimsical release notes that tell me nothing ("so many fixes! booya! get yr groove on daddy-o!") as i do about corporations trying to perform april fool's jokes.
save it for improv. tell me exactly what changed and why i want this update. assume i'm frowning at you, arms folded
"But with sufficient power, with carefully chosen words, a god can do anything it is possible to do. How can a god be a god with no language? And if language is a thing humans had to teach to gods—my experience suggests this was the case—how did those other gods I saw so long ago do anything? I do not know. I can only assure you that my account of my history is true. "
I am really enjoying the relationship between gods, language, and truth in Leckie's The Raven Tower:
"A god’s words are inescapably true, and gods make things happen by speaking them—so long as a god has sufficient power, of course. To say something beyond one’s power to enforce can wound a god badly, can take decades or centuries or even millennia to recover from. To speak an utter impossibility—there are such, I assure you—is to drain one’s own power endlessly, to no purpose."
Full Sequel to Hollow Knight! OMG.