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- Hiatus                                                                   [1.0]
- Work                                                                     [2.0]
- KISS                                                                     [3.0]
- The Future                                                               [4.0]


[1.0] Hiatus
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There's not enough time in a day.

I got a new job in September of last year. I'm a Field Engineer at Canonical,
the company behind the distro that spawned my love for UNIX and FOSS. It's been
incredible. I thought it was a pipedream that I could be doing what I love to do
professionally, and I still don't believe I get to do this stuff on a daily
basis.

Verb
dilyn (first-person singular present dilynaf)

    1. to follow, to pursue
    2. to succeed, to follow
    3. to imitate

I have always shined in work done based off of highly imitatable tasks. I will
take instructions and run with them to their (hopefully) highest results. I am
passionate and ruthless.

Frequently, this zeal I was seemingly condemned to have from birth bites me. I
take failure hard, that somehow because I have not succeeded I was never meant
to. It is tricky balancing a drive for perfection sparked by imitation. To put
it succinctly: I will try my damnedest. But a hard a enough failure will make me
never try again.

I don't want to fail at what I love to do.

I love teaching. I spent years doing it, won an award for it. I could not for
the life of me get even an interview after two years of searching for a job.

I love philosophy of language and logic. The work I did in that field helps me
better understand the world around me, the culmination of a decade and a half of
rigorous work to figure out what I think about things, and more importantly HOW
I think about thigs. I was refused from every graduate program I applied to.

I love FOSS. I love simplicity. My ventures in the FOSS community have been
generally well-received, respected, appreciated, whatever. But I need this to
work - if it doesn't, I've lost that last bit of identity I have left.

So I committed myself to my work. I got a career coach. I constantly asked
managers and colleagues for how I could improve in my role. I pursued
interesting work. I achieved great feats, planted the seeds for potential future
commercial opportunities, succeeded in incredibly interesting projects
(hopefully more on that in a future post; it's killing me not being able to talk
about it).

And I think it paid off. I got a promotion.

---

I want to do 2023 different.


[2.0] Work
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My primary thing at Canonical has been RISC-V. In March I took on the task of
bringing Ubuntu Core to RISC-V hardware. We've now got it running on several
different platforms. In October I was hoping to coordinate with several teams to
actually publish official images folx could download, but that has stalled (EoY
mixed with small teams means some things go on hold...). In February I am
putting the bow on this mission with what will hopefully be a demonstration of
SecureBoot and Full Disk Encryption on at least one RISC-V board. A whole year
of effort, neatly wrapped like a gift. And I get to go to Copenhagen, my first
international trip ever. A dream come true.

In tandem with this effort surrounding hardware enablement, I did a stint on the
hardware enablement/kernel team here at Canonical to help with some projects.
Born out of that time was an effort to improve documentation and clarify how
these sorts of things should work internally. Hopefully I'll be finishing those
soon. One of them is a guide on git usage. It's pretty monolithic, perhaps I'll
share it here. It's a useful reference.

What does 2023 hold for me professionally? I have no idea. More of the same,
perhaps? I was sent to the RISC-V Summit in San Jose last week. It was a lot of
fun, and there are some really cool things happening in the RISC-V world right
now. I hope it turns into commercial opportunities so that my work can be used,
but there's a reason I put it up on GitHub, the whole point of FOSS: you don't
need commercial opps to have done something valuable.

So what's going to happen in the new year? No idea. But I'm learning Rust and
trying to keep up learning Go. I'm learning German and chess. Will these things
matter for me professionally? Who knows. But I'm excited about the future,
moreso now than ever.


[3.0] KISS
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I miss KISS.

I haven't booted into my KISS partition in almost a year. Turns out, doing work
on a systemd distro is hard to do on something like KISS. The tools I need don't
exist. It feels uncomfortable and gross to be using something other than the
distro I called home for three years. But you know, we make concessions to do
good work.

I'm hoping to make a reapparance in 2023. I'm already trying to be in IRC more,
I'm checking out the current state of affairs, etc. But I think ultimately I'm
going to be distancing myself from the community. Not out of distate or spite or
some corporate-sellout shenanigans (I swear I'm the same fam), but because
ultimately I want to do my own thing. The first thing you'll probably see from
me in this space is one-to-one transforming my Ubuntu workspace into a
KISS-based one. Lots of snaps, I hear.


[4.0] The Future
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So here we are. Another year over, another year older. I'm almost thirty.
Nowhere near where I thought I'd be, nowhere near where I started.

But hey, this time I'm not scared.

Cheers 2022; won't miss you, but I will celebrate you.

___


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