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Earning my wings

March 18, 2011
By Jordi in public

I forgot when it happened, but it was sometime in late January or February that I was finally given push access to the Octave repositories, plus being a manager for Octave items at the Savannah website where it’s hosted. This means I have the privilege to commit my changes to Octave code on my own without needing to ask someone to push them for me, plus I can also handle bug reports to Octave on my own. In addition to that (bring it on, spammers!) I also now have an @octave.org mailing address.

This is a pretty big deal for me. I had been dreaming of being a formal member of the Octave dev team, and I’m really glad it’s finally happened.

At the same time, I wanted to get this distinction because I had obviously earned it… but what actually happened is that I obliquely requested it and head honcho jwe responded to it.

I’m a junior Octave dev, and I expect to be one for a while until I get to feel more comfortable with the code base. This means that I still need to be very careful with what I push, and I should consult publicly on the mailing list if my patches are acceptable before I push them.

So what have I done so far with my shiny new Octave badge? So far as I write this, not much only 8 changesets, of which 6 are documentation fixes, one was a minor m-script fix for imshow, and the last fix as I write this that looks like a minor thing, but took I would say around 30 hours of debugging to find. The Nikolai Tesla fable comes to mind.

I have done other things that don’t show up in the hg log. I try to help as much as I can in the mailing lists and in the #octave channel in Freenode. I’ve been trying to help triaging bug reports in Savannah. I’ve revived work on Agora a little. A friend has lent me hosting for it! Snippets are now fully functional as far as I’m concerned. I even created a better Octave syntax highlighter for Pygments, although I’m still waiting for the official Pygments maintainer to pull my patches. It really does work, although I gotta fiddle around with the setup in my shiny new webhost to make it work.

I’m going to keep working in the immediate future on the sparse matrix bugs I’ve been looking at. Squashing #32747 was a lot of fun, and it forced me to finally use a good gdb setup, plus learn more about gdb itself. Wow. What an awesome debugger.

And as I keep working on Octave, perhaps I’ll feel more justified for the Octave badge that has been handed to me, feel like I actually earned it, not that I just asked for it and jwe is just a generous guy.

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2 Responses

  1. Júlio HoffimannMarch 18, 2011 @ 21:21Reply

    Jordi! Congratulations! You are a deserver. :-)

    Do you know ddd? Particularly, i don’t like to use gdb directly, it’s so boring.

    Before you ask, ddd is free software:
    http://www.gnu.org/software/ddd/

    Regards,
    Júlio.

    • Hi, thanks for thinking I deserve them. :-)

      I have tried DDD, but it looks really old, and since I use Emacs, I’d rather do my debugging from there instead of installing something else. I’m happy with my choice.



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