Odds & Ends

This page contains links to various documents that I have written or that I find interesting:

  • Aeolus critique: a critique of a recent paper on Aeolus, which argues that the paper's concerns about the Homa protocol are misguided and its proposed improvement to Homa most likely destroys Homa's performance.
  • Page limits: a discussion of page limits for conference papers and why they should be eliminated for final "camera ready" versions.
  • Quals information: information about the PhD Qualifying Exam in Operating Systems and Distributed Systems.
  • Startup company culture: a document I wrote to encourage a particular culture at Electric Cloud.
  • How to make decisions: describes an inclusive, consensus-based approach to making decisions that has worked well for me.
  • Fortnight milestones: a simple approach to managing software projects that worked well for us at Electric Cloud.
  • Tcl history: the story of how I invented the Tcl scripting language and how Tcl and Tk evolved.
  • Some notes about my RSI problems and how I have dealt with them.
  • Survivor Budgeting: an unorthodox proposal for making the California State Legislature more responsible in its fiscal planning.
  • Additional data for the paper "Scripting: Higher Level Programming for the 21st Century," which appeared in IEEE Computer in March 1998.
  • Why Threads Are A Bad Idea (for most purposes). This was an Invited Talk at the 1996 USENIX Technical Conference (January 25, 1996). The talk compares the threads style of programming to an alternative approach, events, that use only a single thread of control. Although each approach has its weaknesses, events result in simpler, more manageable code than threads, with efficiency that is generally as good as or better than threads. Many of the applications for which threading has been recommended (including nearly all user-interface applications) would be better off with an event-based implementation. The slides for the talk are available in PDF format. There isn't a written paper that corresponds to this talk.