Thursday, November 22, 2007

FactorCon MN 2007 post-mortem

FactorCon 2007 in Minneapolis was awesome, despite low attendance: it was just me, Doug, and Slava. Besides coding, we went to one of Doug's girlfriend's concerts, visited Loring Park with the big sculpture of the cherry on a spoon, made mole twice, out of guacs, and successfully avoided bro rape. I don't have pictures, but Doug or Slava probably will have them soon. Unfortunately, unlike the last FactorCon which I missed, we only stayed up until 3:00 or so coding most nights.

Overall, it was maybe a bit too short, but here's what came out of it:

  • Slava had a project to get Windows I/O working better, and make deployment work for Windows the way it does for Mac OS X. The deployment tool can spit out a directory with the proper DLLs, a minimal image, and an executable, but it's not finished yet. Slava blogged about this.

  • Doug's project was to get his regex engine in Factor to work better. Instead of refurbishing the old one, he's writing a new one using parser combinators which generate a parser which uses parser combinators itself. This should be more efficient once Chris Double's pacrat parser in Factor is done.

  • My project, which I really didn't intend to be my project, was getting Factor to work on Mac OS X x86-64 with Leopard. This wasn't going to be that hard; by the first day, I was done with all the compilation stuff. The only thing that made it difficult was the fact that Apple significantly changed the Objective C API in their new ObjC 2.0, included in Leopard. On 32-bit mode, there's backwards compatibility, but not in 64-bit mode. This is going to be a bit more work.

Looks like most future FactorCons will be in Austin, since that's where most people are, for some reason. I hope to see many of you (my readers) there!

Because of my college's weird trimester system, which conjures up images of pregnancy, we have a six-week break from before Thanksgiving until after the new year. (Next term, I'll be taking Abstract Algebra, Algorithms, Social Dance and Syntax Theory, all of which should be fun.) So, over the next month or so, during the break, you can expect more regular posts, and maybe I'll even be able to get some programming done.

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