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Ask Moshe Bar about [your choice here] 473

Posted by Roblimo
from the rennaisance-men-of-the-computer-age dept.
Moshe Bar is (pick one) 1. A Linux kernel developer; 2. A motorcycle enthusiast; 3. The primary openMosix maintainer; 4. A respected Linux device driver writer; 5. Author of several books and many articles about Linux; 6. Newly married. 7. A Talmudic scholar; 8. All of the above. The correct answer is 8, and since in addition to (or perhaps because of) all this Moshe is a popular guy, this interview is here by reader request. (Yes, we take interview requests; send them to robin@roblimo.com.) Ask Moshe whatever you wish, one question per post. We'll send him 10 of the highest moderated questions and post his answers as soon as he gets them back to us.
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Ask Moshe Bar about [your choice here]

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  • Bikes (Score:3, Interesting)

    by crumbz (41803) <.moc.liamg>maps ... uj>maps_evomer> on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:03AM (#3631457) Homepage
    Why did you choose a Harley Davidson? Just curious.
    • A Harley Davidson isn't so much a motorcycle as a tractor with two wheels and "a lot of extra chrome".

      If you've actually ridden Harleys and other bikes you'll know that Harley Davidson survive pretty much solely by marketing their name and selling you the Harley Davidson lifestyle.

      Cruisers are really just toys to be brought out on sunny Sundays to pose round town.

  • by flewp (458359) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:04AM (#3631469)
    Where do you find the time for everything?
    • by FortKnox (169099) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:36AM (#3631730) Homepage Journal
      To make a more specific version of the parent question:

      You do all that and have a wife? How can you possibly find time for her? Does she want more time? Does she kernel hack with you?

      Sidenote: Before people bitch about the 'one question rule', all of it could be slurped up into one question, I just broke it down so that its more readable :-P
  • Time (Score:2, Interesting)

    by rnb (471088)
    How do you find time to follow all of your interests?
  • by Marx_Mrvelous (532372) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:07AM (#3631496) Homepage
    It seems like such a chore to write drivers that work on all distros since they all use different kernels. It seems to me that businesses only develop for windows because they are guaranteed that their drivers will work on all windows machines for X (4,5,6) years without any mroe work. Having experience writing Linux device drivers, do you think that a cross-distribution effort to standardize on kernel versions and guarantee major hardware manufacturers this compatibility would promote driver development in Linux?
    • You hit the nail on the head with this one. I think that a standardized driver system would help to persuade many people to use Linux. I know that my main concern about implementing Linux in business setting is it's incompatibility, and standardized drivers would be a giant leap towards solving this problem.
  • Open Source (Score:3, Interesting)

    by TweeKinDaBahx (583007) <tweek&nmt,edu> on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:07AM (#3631497) Homepage Journal
    What is your opinion of the current state of the open-source community at this time, and do you think open source beer has a future?

    Also, Do yout think that Germany's swich to open source will have a signifigant impact on the open source community and/or IT in general?
  • by Baldric Dominus (455367) <aelfrick@nospam.yahoo.com> on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:08AM (#3631505) Homepage
    Does Moshe have a son/daughter named "foo"?
  • openMosix (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:09AM (#3631508) Homepage
    What is the major difference between openMosix and Mosix, and what do you think openMosix needs to improve on the most?
  • by PM4RK5 (265536) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:11AM (#3631527) Homepage
    As an avid Linux user, and programmer, I've always been interested in developing the kernel. However, the sheer size of the kernel has been rather intimidating, and kept me away from it. I've also found myself to be better at programming "utilities" rather than "end-user" types of programs. Is there any section of the kernel that would be "the best place to start"?

    With that in mind, are there any suggestions you could make to those of us interested in kernel development, on how to get started?

    Thanks up front.
  • by valdis (160799) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:11AM (#3631528)
    We have already seen the Islamic religious authorities having to deal with the question of whether divorce via e-mail is binding. What do you see as the biggest and/or most interesting questions regarding Talmudic teaching as they apply to current/near-future technology?
    • > What do you see as the biggest and/or most interesting questions regarding Talmudic teaching as
      > they apply to current/near-future technology?

      On a related question about Jewish teachings and technology, I can't seem to get my Golem to work. I've mixed the four elements in the proper proportions and recited all the usual kabbalistic incantations, but the damn thing just won't come to life and smite my enemies.

      So, what's the proper way to compile a Golem?

      ;-)
      • On a related question about Jewish teachings and technology, I can't seem to get my Golem to work. I've mixed the four elements in the proper proportions and recited all the usual kabbalistic incantations, but the damn thing just won't come to life and smite my enemies.

        You've got the latest Shem and incantations, right? You can download patches by writing the correct command line and putting it under your pillow while you sleep. This is important, as some Eastern European developers have reported various crashes due to command conflicts. You have to be really careful here.
        (There have also been some embarrassing incidents involving denial-of-service attacks with commands from untrusted users - this has been known to cause flooding)

        So, what's the proper way to compile a Golem?

        The HOWTO is way too long to list here, but I'll give you this tip: Make sure your Perl is up to date.

        -- Yoz
  • by CAIMLAS (41445) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:11AM (#3631531) Homepage
    As someone involved in many different activities, do you have cohesive social groups? That is, do the people from, say, your motorcycle-riding friends develop/use linux as well? (Or does your wife know about your dirty little secret? [kernel.org] :P) I'm interested in knowing what your social ties are, being as it seems you are a fairly active individual.
  • He also has a long-standing love-affair with Israeli history.

    What is your favorite Isreali historical figure?

  • BitKeeper (Score:5, Offtopic)

    by AirLace (86148) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:15AM (#3631564)
    Despite staunch opposition [iu.edu] from certain developers, Linus has recently started [google.com] to maintain the kernel [bkbits.net] using the non-free BitKeeper [bitkeeper.com] SCM product, which is not only proprietary but also uses undocumented file formats, making interoperability difficult or impossible. Do you think it's fair to encourage developers who would otherwise keep to Free Software to turn to a proprietary solution and what is in effect, shareware?
  • ... your life is now an open book. Welcome to the life of the slashdot celebrity.

  • Do you see Mosix becoming so easy to use, so powerful and so fault-tolerant that cheap clusters of commodity boxes will soon displace big proprietary SMP machines?


    And, just to be totally random, have you found that your Talmudic studies have made you, as a person interfacing with other people, more easy to use, powerful, and fault-tolerant?

    • Do you see Mosix becoming so easy to use, so powerful and so fault-tolerant that cheap clusters of commodity boxes will soon displace big proprietary SMP machines?

      First, It's openMosix, not Mosix. Mosix is the legacy version that may not be open source at some point in the near future.

      Secondly, clusters are no where near SMP in as far as what problems they are applicable to. Maybe if we get some sort of high speed commodity interconnect that lets us have shared memory between nodes, then we will be gettting somewhere, otherwise, clusters work on mostly CPU bound problems that don't rely on tons of shared communication between nodes.
  • Serving With Linux [byte.com] is interesting.
  • I read that your past rides have been a Harley-Davidson Softail, a Fat Boy, and a Yamaha Dragstar 1100. I believe I see a Harley Sportster laid into the graphic on the front page of your web site [moshebar.com], so is that the new one on the way? 883 or 1200? Any special plans for it? Engine mods?
  • I wrote to the mosix-list a few years ago about whether Mosix would ever help me render animations with a Windows 3D animation app under Wine. I got a reply saying that anything running under Wine would require pooled memory. Are we going to be seeing this soon because Wine has definitely improved in ways that I don't think anybody imagined in just a few years.
  • Linux and Jewish Law (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Bonker (243350) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:22AM (#3631628)
    I understand that a lot of Jewish religous law about technology is based around the 'started fire' idea. Forgive me for not knowing more about it as I'm not Jewish, but the way I understand it, a fire cannot be started on the sabbath, but a fire can be maintained during the sabbath.

    By the same doctrine, computerized systems can be booted on the day before the sabbath and then put on an autmatic mode during the sabbath. During that time, a sysadmin can address important issues as they creep up, just like he would add a log to the fire he started before the sabbath.

    Right? Please correct me if I'm not.

    Okay, this said, is Linux kosher for the sabbath? Is it permissable to say, perform a checkfs during the holy day? What tasks can you perform and what tasks can't you?
    • by Otter (3800)
      I understand that a lot of Jewish religous law about technology is based around the 'started fire' idea.

      It's more that electricity is classified as 'fire' and electrical devices are subject to the laws governing fire. That is the case when the electricity has the potential to create a fire, because it creates heat or sparks. Solid-state electronics and LEDs are a different matter, but that's getting into some obscure rulings and in practice almost all electrical devices are treated as fire.

      but the way I understand it, a fire cannot be started on the sabbath, but a fire can be maintained during the sabbath...just like he would add a log to the fire he started before the sabbath.

      No, the fire can't be touched at all, except for reasons of safety. On holidays, which have a weaker set of restrictions, the fire can be tended.

      By the same doctrine, computerized systems can be booted on the day before the sabbath and then put on an autmatic mode during the sabbath.

      That's a different issue -- if a cron job or something similar is configured before the Sabbath starts, there's no problem with its running itself. Most religious Jewish homes have lights connected to timers for precisely that sort of thing.

    • I always felt the sabbath fire ban was a bit tricky. As I understand it (IANAJ), making fire is considered work. However, there are numerous situations where making fire can be considered play. Just look at any "dad" on a holiday picnic burning the hamburgers over a barbeque, fire is involved, but he's having a damn good time being "master chef". Same goes for computing, firing up (pun intended) a computer to play a game is certainly not work. Even some computing things many would call work is fun for some, e.g. kernel hacking.
      • IAAJ, but Reform.

        My understanding is that the spark is considered "Creation", and that that's where the work comes in. Remember, Hashem did the WORK of CREATION in 6 days and on the seventh day he rested. So (in my imperfect understanding), creation is forbidden.

        Oh, and observant Jews don't cook on Shabbat, either.
      • by The Wing Lover (106357) <awh@awh.org> on Monday June 03, 2002 @01:39PM (#3632800) Homepage

        However, there are numerous situations where making fire can be considered play.



        Not by orthodox jews. "Work" is probably a poor translation into English of what is forbidden on the Sabbath. For example, a Rabbi and his staff are permitted to do their jobs on the Sabbath (it is their job). Likewise, there are several leisure activities which are forbidden. So the distinction isn't "fun vs. not fun" or "making money vs. not making money". Even if you like playiung video games or want to watch the hockey game, you can't.



        "Doing Work" really means "using technology" or "doing creative things" or "transporting large objects outdoors", etc.



        Note that I'm not Jewish either, but for 2 1/2 years I rented a basement apartment from an Orthodox Jewish family and learned a lot about the religion at that time.



        An excellent read is Judaism 101 [jewfaq.org]

        .
        • Not quite. One of our consultants, who's Orthodox, tells me that on the Sabbath, unless someone is in mortal danger, and you, as the Jew, are the only person around who could possibly affect the outcome for the better, you are allowed to work to that point only.

          LV
      • Enjoyment isn't the issue.

        It is presumed that God enjoyed creating the world; it wasn't "work." But yet He took a break from creating.

        A writer who loves to write or a painter who loves to paint would still be rejoined from partaking in their craft. And so would a kernel hacker.

        -jon

  • by dalutong (260603) <[djtansey] [at] [gmail.com]> on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:23AM (#3631644)
    do you think that the Linux kernel should follow the same route as the Mozilla project. That being that when Mozilla reaches 1.0 the API will freeze and any plugins, applications that use gecko, etc. will be compatible until version 1.2 is out. Should the Linux kernel make some sort of standardized API for drivers so a driver that works with 2.4.0 will work for 2.4.20?

    Is this a reasonable request? (doable?)

    why/why not?
  • by haggar (72771) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:27AM (#3631667) Homepage Journal
    After reading this cheerful little event [moshebar.com] I decided to ask you: what was the expression on the faces of these Microsoft executives, when you delivered your speech about Linux?

    Talk about priceless :o)

  • Database Clusters (Score:5, Interesting)

    by emil (695) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:27AM (#3631673) Homepage

    As a cluster guru, I am curious about your take on database server clustering in both the commercial and the open-source space.

    First, it appears that IBM DB2 has been wiping the floor with Oracle on the TPC benchmarks lately, and Oracle "RAC" has been a flop. However, IBM is not using any hardware from its proprietary server lines, but instead relies on clusters of "federated" databases running on 32 standard PCs running either Linux or Windows. It does appear that Oracle still generally beats IBM in raw performance on a single system (as IBM refuses to post any non-clustered benchmarks AFAIK).

    Do you think that any of the hype over either of these vendors cluster packages is worth attention? Do you agree with Sun's claim that TPC(-C) no longer has any practical relevance? It all seems to be getting rather silly.

    Second, is there any push to make any of the ACID-leaning open databases (Postgres, SAP-DB, etc.) fault-tolerant, perhaps using Mosix? I assume this would require modifications to Postgres enabling it to access raw partitions. Have you had any talks with the Red Hat Database people about cluster modifications to Postgres, just out of curiousity?

    • What the hell does that have to do with openMosix.

      You are talking about fault tolerant clustering, which openMosix isn't. OM is parallel processing type clustering.
  • the future of linux (Score:2, Interesting)

    by larry bagina (561269)
    Linux (as is a lot of open source software) is mostly just a reimplementation. Although there are some novel ideas, unix, clustering, etc, were done by others years ago.


    Do you think the linux kernel, openMosix, and Open Source in general can break out of that stereotype?

  • Motorcycle Question (Score:3, Interesting)

    by w.p.richardson (218394) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:30AM (#3631691) Homepage
    What do you think of the return of the Indian [indianmotorcycle.com] brand?

    As for me, I think someone is cashing in on a classic. Tis a shame.

  • Please restate your assumptions ;)

  • by Dimwit (36756) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:41AM (#3631785)
    ...but the article said pick anything. Since there are quite a few philosophers on Slashdot (and since I'm Jewish and this question gets a lot of thought from me, and when will I ever be able to ask again?) here's my question:

    Do you see any reconciliation between science and the G-d of the Torah? What about between Science and any sort of Creationism at all? Do you see the possibility that science, as it approaches the moment of Creation itself, becomes more in tune with religion? I guess a big part of what I'm asking - do you see a place for (or proof of) G-d in science?

    Thanks...sorry this isn't the usual Slashdot fare, but I can't help but ask.
    • These are great questions, Dimwit! (I must say, I feel a little odd writing your handle and hping it doesn't sound like sarcasm!).

      A question back to you (and others): do you see any inherent division between science and the G-d of the Torah? Or between science and "God" as the English call it, or "Allah" as Muslims call it, etc.?
      • Err, Jews don't actually call the supreme being "gee, underscore, dee". They just feel (or at least some do) that it's profane to write the name of the holy one in books that are not holy. So they write "G_d" the same way people write, "What the f___?"
    • As far as I can tell, there's a big loophole in Genesis that allows for Evolution. Essentially, the loophole can be summed up in the question "how long is a day?" The loophole was pointed out in the New Testament by John (IIRC), who said "to God a day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years is but a day". To anyone who insists that the 7 days of creation were 24 hours, I say "who are you to tell God how long a day is?"

      I'm a Buddhist, so these questions are much easier for me, but I was raised Christian and still believe in a higher power, so I've put some thought into them. It's been a while since I've read the Bible, but I recall that there was enough ambiguity and strangeness in Genesis to allow room for things like Evolution if the reader was willing to put some though into it, as opposed to simply accepting the dogma handed to them at face value.

      • Until there is a light/dark cycle in existence, the word "Day" is totally undefined. One of the silly things about literalist creationism (the type that insists it was exactly 7 of our normal earth-days) is that before the earth exists, the measurement "day" is undefined. Before there was light, the measurement "day" is undefined. How long is a "day" when there isn't even a rotating earth or a sun yet?

        Of course, as an atheist, I don't see this as evidence of creationism and evolution being compatable. I see it as evidence of the story being likely made up by ordinary humans at a time when people didn't realize what causes days and nights, and didn't realize that the length of a day is different depending on what planet you are talking about. The story was good enough to explain the unknown at the time, but later on as some of those unknowns became knowns, the errors in the explanation started to become noticable, and apologists started finding strange ways to patch around those errors.

      • Nevermind that the Bible itself has gone through lots of translations and has had meaning lost.

        For all we know, God mandated evolution. There is a gap between percieved/measured reality and "Truth". I am completely comfortable with religion having free reign in this gap.
    • Sorry to reply to my own post - let me clarify something here. When I say "Creationism", I don't mean right-wing dinosaurs-never-existed Creationism. I mean "the existance of an intelligent Creator and (at least somewhat) planned design for the Universe, as opposed to pure Atheism."

      Sorry, just wanted to clear that up.
    • My answer to this question used to be my .sig:

      "Religion answers the question "Why" and science answers the question "How". A poor mind confuses these questions, but most people can't outthink a grapefruit."

      -jon

  • ok, so I admit it... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by morgajel (568462) <slashreader@@@morgajel...com> on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:44AM (#3631811) Homepage
    I have no Idea who you are.

    however, it says here you develop drivers.
    how does one get into that sort of thing starting out? obviously you've been doing it for a while. how would someone who has a base understanding of assembly and C get into this? it's a big field, and I wouldn't know where to start, but I would like to help some day.
  • For me, that's the main thing that i fear of "fork and forget", a non-migrating socket would easily double the network traffic on a cluster... but i've never been able to found any word of progress on this area.

    And what about other forms of IPC communication? is there a (performance) contrainidication on their use on mosix clusters?
  • by gosand (234100) on Monday June 03, 2002 @11:52AM (#3631870)
    According to the FAQ [moshebar.com] on your website, you are currently studying for your first law degree. With such a heavy technical background, especially in CS, I am curious as to what area of the law you are planning on going into. Is it a technology-related area? It would be nice to have some more technically-capable people in the law profession, especially those who are Linux friendly. Or is going into law just your way of making money for that early retirement?
  • I just wonder how difficult it is to keep your head in maintaining complex and sophisticated code with a new family while living in the midst of tensions that most of us can't imagine.
  • Many geeks track politics from a logically analytical standpoint rather than from an emotional, nationalistic, or religiously prescribed stance.

    Some of these "freethinkers" have come to the conclusion that Israel is a racist theocracy no better than the WW2 German Nationialism that spawned it. Right or wrong, this viewpoint exists, and my question is based not on the debatable truth of this view but rather on its existence.

    Much technology development, and many great programmers (Arnold Robbins comes to mind) are resident in Israel. Is it legitimate (from your perspective as a student of the Talmud) to use one's influence to dissuade one's employer from using technology developed in Israel, if one has anti-Zionist beliefs? What if using one's position to show solidarity with the oppressed Semitic peoples of Israel and Palestine is a disservice to one's employer? Is the responsibility to the employer greater than the responsibility to personal conscience?

    And finally, does it make a difference if you're Jewish, and have spent countless hours in thought, study and prayer before arriving at the decision to boycott Israel?
    • I assume that you are talking about yourself so I have to ask. Just what is it that Israel does that is like the Nazis in any way shape or form? I have yet to come across anyone who holds that opnion that can back it up but you may be the first. mail me at rayp@unixnetworking.net if you want to take this off fourm and prevent us from getting modded down. I strongly disagree with you but I am open to rational arguments based on fact and looking at the whole picture. Please respond.
  • UnitedLinux (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Arethan (223197) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:06PM (#3631987) Journal
    What are your feelings toward UnitedLinux? Do you feel that it is a blatant misuse of other people's hard work, or is it merely a misunderstood attempt to standardize the vast differences between various Linux distributions? Lastly, do you feel that Linux needs this sort of standardization in order to succeed in the business world (both server and desktop markets)?
  • Which one? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Cardhore (216574) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:07PM (#3631990) Homepage Journal
    1. Emacs
    2. VI
  • Mosix is indeed one of the nicest things ever to hit the Linux kernel.

    Altough Mosix may be seen as a process dispatching tool (a la PVM), albeit automatic and without requiring specific application coding, some people envision much more for it.

    Specifically, uses may range from creating distributed fault-tolerant systems to providing a platform for mobile agents and other forms of code mobility.

    If this is the desired route, current obstacles lay in I/O portability, including disk, but especially network.
    Is this where you think Mosix needs to go? What do you envision a future "completed" Mosix system doing?


  • In the broad sense, where do you see scalable large computer systems going in the long (10+ year) term? Think of all the competing methods to attain scalbility (SMP, NUMA, application-layer clustering, tight single system image clustering, etc) - which model or hybrid of models do you expect will succeed in the long run as the primary architecture for heavy computing - and is the answer different for databases or other data-centric needs?
  • by Bytenik (313942) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:15PM (#3632053)
    Right now, as you've mentioned in the documentation, programs that access databases or shared memory do not derive any particular benefit from using openMosix.

    Is there any work planned to enhance openMosix to support a single memory space among all nodes or to otherwise allow implicit sharing of memory? Is this what the "network RAM" research is attempting?

    Implementing something along these lines in an efficient manner would hugely expand the range of problems that openMosix could be used to tackle.

    Imagine being able to split a database transaction into hundreds of parts and run it in parallel on hundreds of openMosix nodes with a terabyte or more of combined RAM. The processes that share data would automatically migrate to the same node. Mmmmm good!
  • Congratulations... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by crisco (4669) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:16PM (#3632060) Homepage
    ... on your recent wedding.

    Introducing a Ms. usually complicates the hacker lifestyle. Despite good intentions on both sides, scheduling conflicts erupt and something has to give.

    How well does Ms. Bar understand your {"fascination", "interest", "obsession", "devotion"} to computing? How about your other hobbies and interests?

  • IBM and Hercules? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Jay Maynard (54798) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:27PM (#3632142) Homepage
    (I'm the maintainer of Hercules [conmicro.cx], an open source emulator for IBM mainframes that runs on Linux and Windows.)


    You've mentioned Hercules in your column a couple of times, both quite favorably. Thanks!

    One industry analyst from Germany has claimed repeatedly that IBM is getting ready to slap down Hercules with its lawyers, on the basis of some unspecified violations of their intellectual property rights. He's said that it's not just patent infringement, but refuses to go into exactly what else.

    What effect would you think that taking such an action would have on IBM once the open source community finds out?

  • Thread migration (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Bobo_the_Chimp (313377) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:28PM (#3632144)
    One of the advantages of OpenMosix is that programs do not need recompilation or any special design techniques to take advantage of clustering.

    This design goal isn't always realized though, because OpenMosix works with processes as the atomic work-distribution unit, and not treads. ie. OpenMosix can't migrate multithreaded apps.

    Is thread support planned for *any* future version of OpenMosix?

  • a mature kernel? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by bcrowell (177657) on Monday June 03, 2002 @12:43PM (#3632256) Homepage
    Great software projects may (should?) eventually mature to the point where they don't need to change anymore. A classic example is TeX, whose version number is converging to pi. Is there a point at which the Linux kernel will become a mature project, and most of you smart kernel hackers can turn your talents to other open-source work? As a desktop user, it seems to me that the kernel has already reached that point; the only time I ever run into low-level system bugs, it's always X bugs, not kernel bugs. Is it getting to the point (e.g., with virtual memory stuff) where any change you can make will cause the kernel to perform just a little worse for some people, and just a little better for others?

    I can't help thinking that the Linux kernel may be a little like string theory in physics. String theory tends to attract young people who are the most talented of all, and you have to wonder whether their talents are being wasted, since string theory might not even reflect reality.

    • This may be off-topic. However, the Linux kernel is an interesting topic.

      If Linux were a microkernel, then I'd probably say that it could actually be "finished", as far as any software project can be said to be finished. A microkernel basically provides the minimum necessary services for an operating system, such as a scheduler and memory management.

      Monolithic kernels, which provide much more than absolutely necessary, do not seem able to achieve any degree of being finished. Look at khttpd, the the kernel httpd implementation. Is this necessary? No, of course not, not even in anyone's wildest dreams. Is it nifty or useful? Sure. Could we stick anything else in the kernel that's nifty or useful? Sure. So, by my way of thinking, there is no time that a "bloated", (to use a loaded word - maybe "inclusive" or "feature-rich" would be better) monolithic kernel could ever be close to finished.

      Specific parts of the kernel may very well be finished, with only tweaks and bug-fixes necessary. Most drivers are in this state. SCSI, TCP/IP packet filtering, SMP (especially high-end SMP with 8+ processors), and the filesystem code are in constant flux. None of them have stayed even remotely similar between any recent major kernel versions (2.0 through 2.4). However, look at how stable the Alpha port is or how little the IDE subsystem has changed from 1.0 to 2.4 (one major change, which basically added EIDE support and Ultra DMA).

      So, there's no prayer of the kernel being finished, but there is a good chance that the SCSI subsystem will be finally etched in stone, much like the IDE subsystem.
  • I understand that you're a Talmudic scholar. This is interesting in itself since most of the highest profile members of the Free Software community usually express anti-religious ideas or are from religious traditions drastically at variance with the Judeo-Christian traditions (ie, neo-paganism and oriental misticysm).

    How is that you relate your Jewish faith with the work as a Free Software developer, and the central tenets of the Free Software movement?
  • Practical OpenMosix (Score:3, Interesting)

    by bozoman42 (564217) on Monday June 03, 2002 @01:50PM (#3632895) Homepage
    What are some of the most interesting computing projects you've heard about using MOSIX that could pretty much only happen using MOSIX (as opposed to "plain old" PVM/MPI/etc)?
  • I have not ever been tempted to post on /. but there is always a first time.

    There have been a lot of posts about conflicts or lackof with Halachik (orthodox) Judaism and tech. I'm sure Moshe knows his stuff and I'm also sure that he would be embarassed to be called a Talmud scholar. However, could he/you perhaps spend some time dispelling myths and explaining facts about some of the issues. I don't think a discussion on using email as a shaliach (third party) for divorce papers is necessary or the difference between "G-D" on paper and "God" on a computer screen (which is a comlex issue. But ideas about how the sabbath fits in with practical life and place of God in his personal life would be illuminating.
  • What is the most useless / weirdest / hackish / funny "feature" that you ever saw on a linux machine or in a proposed kernel patch?

    What would you like to see on linux that would fit that category?
  • Fast compile server (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Snake (13761)
    Like every decently equipped developer, you have a compile server. However, you recently (2 months ago, IIRC) said that you wanted to accelerate [moshebar.com] the speed of compilation.

    What solution have you used?

    Did you look at using ram disks?

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