wo 21 november 2018

Upon our arrival in New Orleans on November 5th, 2018, my friend Nathan explained to me, with a mix of apparent excitement and apprehension: “our internal Jepsen test suite found a real consistency bug.”

I replied: “This is great! This confirms yet again that good testing is actually useful! Have …

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wo 16 mei 2018

CockroachDB happens to be somewhat compatible with PostgreSQL, meaning that software written to use PostgreSQL can sometimes (often!) be used with CockroachDB without changes.

Why was CockroachDB designed to be compatible with PostgreSQL?

Perhaps surprisingly, the answer to this question is currently (as of early May 2018) not documented publicly …

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di 08 mei 2018

When I started contributing to CockroachDB, I was foremost excited to contribute to an open source project with a strong “free as in freedom” component, which makes CockroachDB agreeably FOSS in my eyes.

FOSS has a social purpose, one that supports giving others both the tools to progress forward and …

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wo 02 mei 2018

A few months ago, I was invited to present CockroachDB to a tech consulting office in Amsterdam. The audience was welcoming and receptive. They understood, appreciated, and lauded the “flagship” features of CockroachDB: distribution, scalability, high availability, operating simplicity.

Yet a question came up which I had not heard before …

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di 14 juni 2016

In any comparative discussion about programming languages, the probability that the conversation will mention Brainfuck or INTERCAL approaches 1 over time.

(Based on years of empirical evidence as a scientist, programmer and unix hacker.)

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za 20 december 2014

Say you have invented “the next big thing”, e.g. the next C, the next operating system, the next processor, and hope your thing will shine, masses will come to it and you will be forever famous.

You will invest money, time, the best engineering expertise you can get, to …

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di 07 oktober 2014

Every now and then a scientist should step back from his specialization and reflect in the entire research domain around him/her. What are the big, hard problems in my general area of research? I can see a couple:

  1. Privacy and data retention: we must discover and learn how to …
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zo 14 september 2014

For the last 4 years I have been growing dissatisfied with the quality and contents of the BSc programs in informatics in the Netherlands. So as the engineer inside me requires, I have also thought hard to find a (putative) solution. This is the result.


Two components: Foundations of …

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zo 10 november 2013

Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet.—-Agent Smith, The Matrix

One morning I woke up suddenly at 4am. A dream brought me An Idea, and I could not shake it away. As the hours went by, I became convinced it would make a crazy yet quite …

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vr 18 oktober 2013

I need to pick a programming language to prototype some initial ideas for my next research project, an interactive shell to program and control lightweight process networks. I initially started with Python, but I stumbled into the need for efficient and concise pattern matching on tree-like data structures, which Python …

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