Chip's Technical Blog

Tech commentary of thoughts, challenges, how-to's, and the mundane.

Archive for March, 2012

MaceKen: USENIX ATC 2012

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

I learned this morning that our submission to the 2012 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC) has been accepted for publication. As with other paper announcements on this blog, I am merely sharing the good news, and forward-referencing an eventual post describing the paper at our research group website (http://www.macesystems.org/). Briefly, the paper is about supporting a new failure model for programming large scale distributed systems, allowing those systems to ignore crash-restart failures using our otherwise pre-existing Mace programming model. Sunghwan Yoo is the main student author on the paper, and it is done in collaboration with Terence Kelly at HP Labs, Hyoun Kyu Cho—a prior intern of his, and Steve Plite—of the IT staff of the CS department at Purdue.

Trying to be paperless

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

In the quest to be paperless, both for environmental reasons, and also for being gentler on my back, I seek to not have to carry around printouts of documents as easily accessed using my tablet, phone, or computer. However, I have increasingly grown frustrated that a major hindrance to my attempts to be productive without paper are hampered by the FAA, and its historical policy preventing any electronics from being used during takeoff and landing. Since on many of the flights I ride this is more than half of the flight time, my air travel time has been wholly unproductive unless I have paper documents to work with. I was prepared to write a post criticizing this, questioning whether any data supported the risks, and considering how a tech company like Apple or Amazon could score major points by convincing the FAA to certify their tablet devices for takeoff and landing usage. Accordingly, I was very encouraged to read in articles such as this one at Ars, that the FAA is in fact planning to take a “fresh look” at the use of certain electronics devices during takeoff and landing.

If such efforts fail, I next wonder what tech can produce – some ability to create a display before takeoff that can be “frozen” during a “powered-off” state, that might be large enough to keep me busy reading during takeoff and landing…

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