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Theodore Ts'o
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I don't know about you, but the recent, somewhat interesting.... excitement in Washington, D.C. has inspired me to learn more about public policy matters. Here are three of the best talks that I've found.

The first is by Robert Reich, who was Secretary of Labor under President Clinton, and who also worked for Robert Bork (the former Supreme Court Justice nominee) in the Ford Administration. The title of the talk[1] was Preparing Our Economy for the Impact of Automation & AI, but it's a very thoughtful discussion about how we got to the Trump presidency (interesting factoid: all of the districts that voted for Trump had a net decrease in median income in the past 5-10 years, so it's not because people are racist or nativist; people really are hurting out there, and it's only very minimally due to globalism and trade, but more due to technology, automation, and the "gig" economy.)


The other two talks are by Michael Hayden, who served as the director of NSA and CIA during the Clinton and Bush administrations. Terrorism and Islam's Civil War: Whither the Threat?[2] is a really good examination of how complicated things are in the Middle East and the Arab Spring, in far more detail than is usually covered in the news. The other is a talk[3] he gave at the Stephens Institute of Technology, and it covers a more global view of the "plate tectonics" which are driving issues around the world.


Anyway, for those people who might be getting depressed or stressed out about what's been showing up on the nightly news, this might be a much more informative and thoughtful alternative. The talks are mostly not about politics, but about public policy, and in a way that transcends the whole Republican versus Democratic rhetoric.

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Just when you think flying hadn't already sunk to the level of taking a Greyhoud bus....

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"Evolving Ext4 for Shingled Disks" by Aghayev, Ts'o, Gibson, and Desnoyers was accepted by the FAST 2017 conference!

An initial set of patches are in the unstable portion of the ext4 patch queue and I hope to get the polished them into shape for upstream merging in the next few months.
I'm really enjoying working with a graduate student at CMU who has been working on implementing an SMR-friendly journal for ext4. It's almost, but not quite enough to wonder if I would have enjoyed an Academic career. Fortunately, having read +Matt Welsh's musings about what it's like to grub for research dollars, I think I'm much happier working with a grad student (or maybe two, who knows) as a hobby. :-)

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In Scalzi's words: "I’m a well-off straight white man, which means of all the segments of the population, the Trump years will likely punish me the least.... I can’t say the same for my friends and loved ones who are women or minorities or LGTBQ or who struggle financially to make ends meet, or some combination of all of those. I wish I could say to them that it’ll be fine and that they’ll be able to ride out the next four (or, God forbid, eight) years, but I can’t."

This is what privilege looks like. To all those who who aren't so privileged, take care of yourself. I'm not sure what I can do to be a good ally, but I pray that I can be shown how do what I can. For now, I'll try to keep the faith that Love trumps fear and hate.... eventually.

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So in 2010, Donald Trump "fired" someone from The Apprentice due to "locker room talk". And Billy Bush has been suspended from the Today show, and there are rumors that he may never return. So does that mean that as far as the hiring criteria for the most powerful man in the world is concerned, the Republican National Committee's standards are lower than that of the Today Show and "The Apprentice"?

Got it.

Huh. +Quora has blocked me because it doesn't think Theodore Ts'o is my real name....

#1 Real name policies are really stupid.
#2 I'm guessing they are using zero sanity checks before banning people.

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I got tired of Calibre's installation and update mechanism being the logical equivalent of "sudo wget $URL | python", so I finally got around to creating a method for running Calibre into a container where it only has access to my e-book library.

Hat tip to +Jessica Frazelle since I borrowed heavily from her Dockerfiles and dotfiles repositories on github to figure out how to make something like this work.

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Wow. Just Wow.

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For people who like to run random binaries that they pull off the network as root, I now have Docker images for kvm-xfstests. Example use: "docker run -it --privileged -v /build/linux:/root/linux tytso/kvm-xfstests kvm-xfstests smoke"

Or you can build the kvm image yourself using: "docker build -t kvm-xfstests"

Of course, there is still the question of why you would want to run a VM inside a container. Reminds me of Hitler's Docker rant:

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I just presented the following talk at #LinuxCon  this afternoon: GCE-xfstests: Testing kernels using Google Compute Engine.
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