Erlang’s GC only runs when you’re running

Recently, as part of RabbitMQ server development, we ran into an interesting issue regarding Erlang’s per-process garbage collection. If a process is idle — not doing any work at all, simply waiting for an external event — then its garbage-collector will not run until it starts working again. The solution is to hibernate idle processes,…

Where did all my space go?

Over the last little while, I’ve started to suffer from lack of space on the hard disk in my laptop, which is ridiculous, since there’s an 80GB disk in there and there is no way I have that much data I need to hang on to. I decided to do something about it last week.…

Toy raytracer in Python

I spent a few days in Wellington recently with my 12-year-old brother. We somehow got to talking about ray tracing, and so we ran through a bit of linear algebra (vectors, normals, and dot products, basically) and built ourselves a raytracer in Python as a lark. We collaborated on the Vector and Point classes, and…