Programmer Birthday

Well, on August 10th (Friday), I miraculously made it to 32. That'd be a programmer birthday right there - 25.

Next one of those I get will be 32 years from now. I'm hoping I'll make it to 27, but I'm not counting on it. Barring hitting the Kurzweil singularity some time soon, I'm not expecting to get anywhere near 28 though.


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A while back I wrote an article on CodeProject about a bi-partite circular buffer algorithm I came up with to handle asynchronous network IO. (It's also useful for other things - pretty much any scenario where you have to pass data in contiguous blocks to other APIs, yet you don't know exactly how much data you're going to be passing at any time).

Well.. I just came across this blog post from someone:

A Pure Programmer
I read an article about circular buffer and related code, which written by Simon Cooke. It’s very good. I never heard of Simon Cooke before. I was moved by the last words in his article: “If you do find it (the code he write) useful, or use it in any of your code, all that I ask in return is that you drop me an email and let me know how the code is being used. It’s nice to know that it's out there, alive, and doing cool things."
Oh,what a pure programmer!

Awww... bless. It warms my heart that someone appreciates my work, it really does.

I must admit, I was rather proud of that little piece of code. It worked out to be pretty fast too - the only way to do anything faster would have been to use the virtual memory mirroring technique I laid out in the article - but unfortunately, that doesn't work on some architectures. (I'm looking at YOU, XBOX 360). Not sure if it's multiproc safe on other systems too. Damn cache coherency, I stab at thee.


So I got a bit narcissistic and did a Google search on the Bip Buffer... and lo and behold, people are using it. One guy's looking at it as a way of performing least-wear writing to flash memory (now that's a cool application I never even thought of!). So glad this code's getting some use!!!


Litty Takes Off...

Well well well... I'm out of original story, and now I'm totally on my own. My 1995-or-so self is no longer in control of this little shebang, and I'm up and rolling.

I've just finished putting together the elements of the plot that should take things all the way up to Act 3 of the film. I've deliberately kept it pretty vague so that I don't lose momentum. And I'm going to do it in stages - write chunks of synopsis, then write chunks of script - so that I don't hit my usual problem of knowing how a story ends and then losing interest in it.

Currently I'm sitting at the bottom of page 24. Litty is talking to other teachers about the drawings that Anna has been doing. And shit is about to go down.

11 pages and a road map of where the story's going to go today. Things are looking promising. Don't know if I can keep this pace up, but if I can... wooooo doggie. I'm either a third or a quarter of the way through. Let's say I get this all wrapped up by October... that gives me a couple of months for second and third drafts (I'll get my script reading crew on it at the second draft point), and then by December I should be ready to shop this mofo around.

Yay! All I have to do that is keep the momentum up now.


Writing Update

I wrote two more pages on the Little Miss Litty script today. About 10 more to go before I run out of my original material to work from. And then it's all new. And I finally have to figure out what the game the creature wants to play is.

I knew what the game was when I wrote the original story. Not any more though. That has disappeared to the winds of time. (I'm guessing that this is why writing a synopsis is a good thing - if you drop a story for a while, you can go back and pick up your original intent).

So now I have to come up with a new game for the creature to play. I've got some ideas that I'm toying with for that.

On the positive side, it's fascinating watching how the story changes as it moves from the original novel form to the cinematic realm. Thoughts and musings of characters have had to turn into dialogue between two characters. Scenes which worked great as prose (eg. the opening to the Litty in the mossy corridor scene) have had to be completely reworked and turned into entirely new sets of scenes - which all have their own inherent spookiness. And oddly, I don't think they'd have worked all that well as prose.

And frankly, I have to finish this one. My goal is to have the entire script done, redrafted, etc etc etc by December, ready to show to agents. We'll see.


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