Hobbies

Programming

I really like computer programming. I'm trying to become a computer programming guru, but there's a hell of a lot to know (and it's not all available in books yet, either). I program computers at work, and I get paid to do it. I program computers when I'm not at work, and don't get paid for it. I pay a price in hand/finger strain, weight gain, and social isolation, but I reap the benefits of becoming really good at computer programming. :)

Windows

I program for the Microsoft Windows platform at work. This platform was targeted because of the broad installed base of potential customers, and not for its outstanding developer support (obviously, because it sucks). Now that Apple has introduced Mac OS X with a FreeBSD core called Darwin, perhaps they will have something more stable than a prettied up DOS which we can target.

I use Microsoft Visual C++ 6 to develop software at work. I find its class browser to be invaluable during development. It extracts the class interface and makes it available via mouse-over in a panel next to the text editor window. The wizards and such that also come with it are okay I guess, but I could do without them. I also have noticed that the code optimizations that their compiler performs are often completely wrong, resulting in code that does not do what it is supposed to do. It is very troubling because the debugging versions work just fine but optimized release builds don't. If turning off optimizations Project menu->Settings...->C/C++ tab->Optimizations: None (Debug) causes the program to subsequently resume functioning normally in release mode, it's probably those erroneous optimizations (e.g. 'Gremlins') behind it all.

Note: I am not just making this up as an excuse for my poor programming ability. It's been documented. There are several other bugs with the Visual C++ compiler, documented here, here, here, here, here, and elsewhere. My poor programming ability is something else altogether. ;)

Note: Many of these deficiencies have been rectified with service update 3, but the compiler still sucks badly when it comes to templates. We'll eventually be forced to upgrade to VC7 because of this.

MudOS and LPC

I'm a volunteer programmer (called 'creator') on New Moon Mud. A 'Mud' is a Multi-User Domain (or, more traditionally, a Multi-User Dungeon) which means that a bunch of people can connect to it over the Internet and play together. New Moon is Free (as in Beer) to play, but in order to look at the source code you have to be invited to become a creator.

I've developed an entire area of my website to New Moon and things related.

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