Your Guide to Software Development

Open Source in Business

Written 2019-07-24 by Len Payne in Learning

On July 25th, I will be presenting for the Canadian Undergraduate Computer Science Conference (CUCSC) at one of my alma maters, the University of Windsor. The presentation will be on a topic I think is valuable to current students, namely the implications of using open source technology in business, both pros and cons, and how to manage the balance.

This article is mostly a brain-dump of all the things I think I might talk about.

I will include this link in my presentation, and I will attach the slides on my site for people to download. To dig into the meat of the matter, keep reading.

Deep Learning and AI from the Shallow End

Written 2019-02-20 by Len Payne in Learning

On February 27th, I will be presenting for the Sarnia Tech Community on a topic near-and-dear to my last thirteen months: Deep Learning for Good.

I’m hoping to take this presentation on tour, but it will undoubtedly take some iterations and practice.

At Link2Feed, we are the market leader for food bank client intake software. It’s not a big market, but we’ve been able to help our partners serve more than 3 million individuals in over 50 million hunger relief transactions. I would like to discuss the story around our use case, around tech for good, and how deep learning has helped us gain insights that help us measurably improve the lives of our food-insecure neighbours.

Annual is "Regularly Scheduled", Right?

Written 2019-02-18 by Len Payne in Learning

I was not very good at continuing to post in the last year.

I wrote a draft around late November when I got into Mastodon (before the Tumblr Exodus) about setting up Mastodon on the RHEL 8 beta. It… didn’t go well.

You can find some of my musings on Mastodon @LenPayne@Cybre.Space

When I have occasion to wax on things, I am often waxing there. I do not have occasion very often, though.

If you’re interested, follow through for a more full update. But the Coles’ Notes version is:

  • I officially resigned from the College in mid-2018
  • I have been the full-time CTO of Link2Feed for 13 months now
  • I have not posted since last Family Day – it is again Family Day
  • The Sarnia Tech Community and Sarnia-Lambton Linux Users Group are going strong
  • I am still running a DragonflyBSD VM here at home
  • I tried to run some production loads on the RHEL 8 beta and realized how many non-standard tools we use

DragonFly BSD - First Impressions

Written 2018-02-19 by Len Payne in Learning

As part of SLLUG, we have monthly chats about open source software. One of the places I’ve had a significant blind spot in my FLOSS knowledge is with the BSD ecosystem. Our March conversation is about enterprise technologies. I tasked our members with some homework: go learn something new, and tell us about it!

So I’m diving in a very specific direction: I’m going to learn about DragonFly BSD.

History Lesson

Unix history-simple.svg

I was introduced to DragonFly BSD through Lobsters some time ago. For those (like me) unfamiliar with the BSD world, I want to get into a brief history lesson before I get more specifically into DragonFly BSD.

  • Jan 1st, 1970 - The UNIX Epoch. The effective start of time (and UNIXes)
  • 1977 - UC Berkeley produced an academic UNIX-derivative called the Berkeley Software Distribution
  • The 80s - BSD development was largely done in academic circles, on mainframes
  • 1991 - Linus Torvalds launches Linux, to bring a UNIX-like kernel to his Intel 80386 PC at home
  • 1992 - Not to be outdone, two Berkeley alumni ported BSD 4.2 and BSD Net/2 to the Intel 80386 and dubbed it 386BSD
  • 1993 - Two forks of 386BSD appeared: FreeBSD and NetBSD
  • 1995 - Berkeley stopped supporting BSD, and 4.4BSD-Lite Release 2 was released to the world. BSD did not die, it merely shifted to governance in forks (FreeBSD, NetBSD, Mac OS X, etc)
  • 1996 - Conflict in the NetBSD project brought rise to a third fork: OpenBSD
  • 2003 - This is where our story begins, with the launch of DragonFly BSD

What is DragonFly BSD?

Resuming our Regularly Scheduled Programming

Written 2018-02-19 by Len Payne in Learning

Welcome back. It’s been too long. Far too long. Today is Family Day in Ontario, and I am spending time with my family. Which means I get a rare chance to do things not related to work.

I’ve got some refreshing to do on the site. A few updates to make. But I’m going to try and keep it short and optimize my use of time.

Big News:

Lots of stuff going on both offline and online in Sarnia. It’s a very exciting time!