academic

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Nice dinner at home after Kaz's presentation

Submitted by gwolf on Mon, 05/19/2014 - 16:18
Nice dinner at home after Kaz's presentation

With eclectic sushi and several other goodies.

Guest class: Jose Juan "Kaz" Casimiro ( @brit_kazito ) dissects the Ext4 filesystem module

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:49

Yesterday night, we had the opportunity to have –for the first time– my friend Kaz as a guest in my Operating Systems class. We are about to finish the semester, and he took the opportunity not just to show how the Ext4 filesystem is structured, but how it is implemented in a current Linux release.

Kaz took a very different approach from what I do: He did it really hands-on, starting with the explanation on how a hello world module would be created, and then digging in following the code of the ext4 module in Linux 3.14 (and some bits in the general filesystem-related includes).

Of course, for a ~2hr session, he did not go into the full details, but did show where the main structures of a filesystem are defined, including a general walkthrough on the general kernel coding style.

The class was very enjoyable and clear. We had the bad luck of the projector's lamp burning out at the beginning of the class, but still, you can see in the pictures the students were really into his exposition. I think the exposition did make it through and got the students involved and interested — And that makes it really worth it!

Now... Sadly, due to a (most probably) human factor, I tried to record this talk but lost most of it :-( I have only the first part, but lost most of the second one. I have some bits recorded by a second camera, but have to check if they make sense by themselves, or do need the whole context. Anyway, I'll be reviewing those bits, and will update this post when I get around to cleaning+fixing+integrating them.

Some more photos...

A talk by Kaz cannot be complete...

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
A talk by Kaz cannot be complete...

Until a cartoon version of one of the attendees is produced!

Nice dinner at home after Kaz's presentation

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Nice dinner at home after Kaz's presentation

With eclectic sushi and several other goodies.

Kaz explaining ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Kaz explaining ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

Kaz explaining ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Kaz explaining ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

Little piece of the ext4 explanation

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Little piece of the ext4 explanation

After the projector blew up at the beginning of the class, all of the exposition had to be directly in Kaz's laptop screen...

Kaz explaining ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Kaz explaining ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

Kaz explaining ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Kaz explaining ext4

Following the source code in his laptop screen, with ~10 eager students following from behind

Kaz explaining ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Kaz explaining ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

The students following Kaz's explanation of ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
The students following Kaz's explanation of ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

The students following Kaz's explanation of ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
The students following Kaz's explanation of ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

Kaz explaining ext4

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 16:34
Kaz explaining ext4

A full group of students following on Kaz's thorough explanation

Guest class: César Yáñez (@caesarcomptus) talks about virtual memory

Submitted by gwolf on Sat, 05/17/2014 - 15:05

Shame on me... I should have uploaded this video a long time ago. I wanted to edit this video to remove pauses, add some in-band indications on who and what it is, and stuff... But after a month, I have not yet got around to do it.

On April 23, I invited César Yáñez to present a talk on virtual memory management to my students (for the Operating Systems class). As always (this is the third time I invite him — The previous iteration was on process scheduling, and is on my site as well), he gave a great class.

I still have some pending videos to upload from the other guests we had this semester, they should come shortly.

Finally: A student once again

Submitted by gwolf on Tue, 01/21/2014 - 21:47

Formally, today is my first day as a student on a formal, scholarized institution — Basically for the first time in almost twenty years!

Yes, those that know me know that I aspire to live the life of academia. I have worked at public universities for almost all of my adult life (between 1997 and 1999 I worked at a local ISP and at a private school), and have had a minor academic position («Técnico Académico») for almost ten years. And not having a proper degree limited me from pursuing anything further.

Then, in early 2010 I presented the written exam. By late 2010, the corresponding oral exam. That allowed me to get my formal diploma in December 2010. By the end of 2011, I requested to be a teacher in the Engineering Faculty of UNAM, and started teaching Operating Systems a year ago, in January 2012.

So, a good advance in the last few years... But I know that if I just sit here, I won't be able to advance my position towards really entering the Sacred Halls of Academia. And there are some rituals I have to comply with. One of those rituals is... Devoting some long time to studying under the formal structures.

Ok, so I'm finally a postgraduate student — I have enrolled in Especialidad en Seguridad Informática y Tecnologías de la Información, a short (one year) postgraduate program in ESIME Culhuacán, of Instituto Politécnico Nacional (a small campus of Mexico's second-largest university).

Some friends have asked me, why am I starting with a Specialization and not a Masters degree. Some simple reasons: Just as when I went to Tijuana in 2010 to do my written exam, once I got and started with the paperwork, I didn't want to let it go — If I postpone it, I will probably lose the push to do it by May-July, when the Masters admission process starts. Also, this specialization can be linked with the masters degree on the same topic given at the same campus. This program is one year long, and the masters two — But having them both takes 2.5 years. So, not such a bad deal after all. And finally, because, after such a long time without being scholarized, I fear not having an easy time getting to grips with the discipline. I can commit to overworking myself for a year — If it's too much for me, I'll just stay with that degree and give up. I expect to like it and continue... But it's also a safe bet :-)

Now, there has to be a downside to picking up this path: Of course, my free time will be harshly reduced. I have reduced my Debian involvement in the last year, as I devoted a huge chunk of my time to teaching and book-writing... This year... We shall see what happens. I can for now only confirm what I have said publicly but inside our team only: I have requested to my peers and to our DPL to step down as a DebConf chair. I love organizing DebConf, but I don't want to be formally committed to a position I just cannot fulfill as I did when I started with it. As for package maintenance, by far most of my packges are team maintained, and those that are not are relatively easy to keep track of. And of course, I'll keep an eye on my keyring-maint duties as well — Will even try to link that work with what I do at school!

Anyway, lets see what comes now!

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