I think one reason I’ve been avoiding posting to my blog lately is the time commitment of writing something of decent length. To get over this hump, I’m going to shift my focus to writing smaller little discoveries of things I find during my researches into Haskell and technology. Let’s see how that goes.

To show just how significant parallelized algorithms can be, today I discovered pxz, a parallelized version of the xz compression utility, which I use constantly. The proof is in the numbers:

Command Before After Ratio Time
xz 2937M 305M 0.104 32m
pxz -9e 2937M 281M 0.096 4m(!)

I put this alias in my .zshrc:

alias tar='tar --use-compress-program=pxz'

Note that to build pxz on the Mac, I had to comment out a reference to MAP_POPULATE, which the OS X’s mmap function doesn’t support.

The following is an amalgam of several letters I sent to Richard Stallman, founder of the free software movement, expressing my concern about the direction GPL licensing is taking, and why I disagree with some of the objectives of the Free Software Foundation.

I’ve seen this issue mentioned in some random and hard to reach places on the Net, so I thought I’d re-express it here for those who find Google sending them this way.

UPDATE: According to the discussion at https://trac.macports.org/ticket/27237, the real problem here is not fully dynamic string, but the use of _GLIBCXX_DEBUG. So I recommend ignoring what follows, as it will help you on Snow Leopard or Lion with gcc 4.6 and above.

I’ve been managing my Ledger project with Git for some time now, and I’ve finally settled into a comfortable groove concerning branches and where to commit stuff.