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Hacker School Day 43 – Everything else from last week

Aside from the pstree updates, there’s been a lot going on at Hacker School for me in the last week!

Matt Might was a resident here and it was great! His presentation at eBay on Monday night was titled “Lambda: Turtles all the way up” and was super informative and funny. I was also lucky enough to see him give a talk where he live-coded an interpreter using syntactic reduction for the lambda calculus in Racket. I was also around for some of his discussion about parsing with derivatives. It was all super fascinating stuff. I’m really glad I got to see it in person — I’ve skipped some of the posts on his blog out of being intimidated and now I feel like I can try to approach it!

I paired with Chase on different stuff this week. We worked through some Top Coder challenges, and looked at his final lab in the operating systems course he’s taking from an online MIT syllabus. The objective in the last lab is to connect your system to the internet, and it starts from building the driver for the ethernet card! It’s using QEMU to drive everything but I was amazed at how real the lab was. It was great working with him and talking about some of the stuff he’s been working on.

Yesterday I worked on the Job Prep Friday challenge, which was all about hash tables. I was familiar with them from my data structures course but was happy to give it a new shot. A lot of my positive experiences at Hacker School come out from “Now that I have time to go as deep as I want with this, I can really learn it”. I took a whole different path learning about the different pieces than I did when I was trying to complete assignments from school. I also spent a lot of time working on Go-specific stuff: I got 100% test coverage (checked with go test -cover), and ended up having a terrible time with packages and testing. I might save that sorrow for another post.

I was also a part of a bunch of Hacker School blog posts and got super excited about them! The first post I was mentioned in was:

23 Hacker Schoolers and Residents on their experiences at Hacker School

I was surprised to see it and happy too! I was also linked in their recent post, announcing the super awesome Code Words publication they’ve been working on.

I still get excited when someone tells me they’re reading these posts, so seeing those links was really great.

Ludum Dare! Ludum Dare started last night! I’ve never entered one before, but Connor Osborn was talking about it and it sounded like fun. I found some SDL2 bindings in Go last night and started to mess with the examples. Way back when I wrote some other games, I was not experienced at all, and in it was in C++ and DirectX. I have some work to do, especially if the game should be done by tomorrow night. I’ve decided that a basic pong clone is a good enough goal for me, since I’m mostly doing it to continue rounding out my practice with Go. Last night I just got the window to flash different colors, but it was nice because I was able to submit a PR to update the example I was using. Games and open source! Woo!

The docs for the bindings don’t exist yet, and some of the function names are slightly different than the C API, but the code is pretty readable and I think pong might be doable.

I’m definitely feeling the pressure of Hacker School ending soon. I have so much stuff left that I want to do. I started writing a list but I’ll write the motto instead: Never Graduate.

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  1. “Never Graduate.” I love this. I have been going to school full time for like 7 years now lol.. even when I finish I feel like I just want to keep learning. This is a great way to look at life. 🙂