Thursday, 16 December 2010

Programming puzzles

These are some of the programming puzzles that have occupied my mind this year, outside work:
  • Distributed file systems with unreliable networks or no network at all.
  • Multi-master file synchronisation
  • Windows Presentation Foundation
  • Pentominoes and exact coverage puzzles
  • YAML and other human-friendly, machine-processable file formats
I have wide-ranging interests, but they tend to cluster around algorithmic investigation (WPF being the exception here). I guess I've always been an algorithmist at heart. I love to figure out how to get a computer to solve a problem, though I don't do as well as some professors do.

This also explains why I write my own software to exactly match my needs and why I get so discouraged when I need to find workarounds for bugs or limitations in the frameworks or hardware I use. It's not interesting or fun to try and trick the computer into doing what you want. Only occasionally are the limitations part of the puzzle.

Mokalus of Borg

PS - The tough days are when my work is much less interesting than these puzzles.
PPS - The only classical "puzzle" here is pentominoes.

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