This is me (wearing a half beard-moustache that I loved, but my wife did not)

On this blog (and in my old blog) I write about

  1. My physics and math study.  This was initially focused on Geometric (Clifford) Algebra, then covered material from the undergrad physics courses I was taking at UofT as a non-degree student (2010-2013).  It now includes material from the M.Eng ECE electromagnetics program (a course based masters degree) I did from 2014-2018. On this site, you’ll find my
    • self study notes for classical mechanics, geometric algebra, and other miscellaneous physics,
    • a PDF notes collection for each undergraduate physics course that between 2010 and 2014 (generally about 200-450 pages per course.)
    • a PDF for each graduate physics or engineering course that I took for my M.Eng degree,
    • my Geometric Algebra for Electrical Engineers book, available for purchase in color ($40 USD), in black-and-white for much less, and for free as a PDF.
  2. Tricks and tips of a career C++ Unix software developer, including debugger and text manipulation tricks that seemed notable.
  3. Occasional home improvement stuff.
  4. Occasional random rants and comments on world or local events or miscellanea.
  5. Odds and ends about COBOL, PL/I, JCL, VSAM, and other mainframe related things that I’ve learned for the day job at LzLabs.

My math and physics writing is somewhat selfish, written for myself to improve my understanding, and represents a running log of my personal learning progress. Please feel free to comment or write if you find any post confusing, helpful, spot an error, or have something to say. I’ll also take tips in bitcoin if you find something of value.

I did all this study with the aim of eventually doing some scientific computing work, which would mesh well with my programming experience, but also require both actively learning and application of interesting science concepts.  That change of careers didn’t materialize since I’m currently having too much fun working for LzLabs.

Despite the fact that I don’t usually write any more than 6 pages in any given day, the total page count now weighs in around 6400 pages.

My occasional programming related posts are usually related to work problems in some way, massaged to obfuscate the original code.

A short non-chronological biography

I’m a dad and stepdad and have two plus two kids at max capacity. I blinked and they somehow transformed from fit-on-my-lap sized to almost all full grown. I have a wife who not only tolerates and encourages my studies, but is also awesome enough to think that math is sexy.

I’m a scripting junkie, and have burned large swaths of time writing perl and python code to “save time”.  Regular expressions are beautiful things.

I worked as a computer programmer for IBM Toronto on the Unix/Windows version of DB2 for about 20 years.  This was programming in the lowest levels of guts of the product, doing system level stuff like asynchronous IO implementation and exploitation, Linux and 64-bit porting, concurrency infrastructure (lockless reader/writer mutex implementation, …), as well as work on the DB2 interface to the pureScale server (redundancy, failover, …).  I rarely saw SQL and knew the product from the inside out, not the outside in.

In April 2016, I joined LzLabs.  I work on our COBOL and PL/I compiler runtime, and am the informal manager (+regression-test lead and staff) of our compiler and debugger project, coordinating our side of the project with Raincode‘s awesome compiler engineers.  I also implemented and maintain the LzLabs legacy C language runtime.

I’m now a lapsed student of martial arts. I took Tae Kwan Do long enough that I earned a black belt by Canadian standards (despite the fact that our school did no competitive sparring, and I have+had very little flexibility).  Later I took some Wing Chun style Kung Fu at Chung’s Arts Academy in Markham.  That is a style that is very non-intuitive compared to Tae Kwan Do, and at one point in time I was able to go through some of the motions in a less clumsy fashion.  It’s interesting how different the spirit of Tae Kwan Do (stand back and kick) and Wing Chun (up close and personal) are.

I was raised in a Scientology family, but haven’t practiced or studied it since I was a teenager.  This background gave me a curiously non-rational acceptance of ideas like ‘past lives’, and ‘out of body experiences’ despite not having any personal observation of either.  I don’t have any immediate desire to reconcile these ideas with the science that I am actively studying, but find the dichotomy amusing and ironic.