Tenth week: Facebook swag, double victory, C++11

published on December 8, 2011

Static build of Qt: VICTORY!

On Monday, I finally got Qt committed (if you’ve been reading my blog, then you’ll know that I started this two weeks ago). It cost me about five full work days.

Funny note about git (the Qt build must be committed to a massive ‘third party code’ repository): interactive rebasing (git rebase -i) would result in out of memory errors … on a (shared) dev server with 64 GB RAM, of which 15 GB was free. Yes, that implies >15 GB of RAM was necessary. git doesn’t seem to perform particularly well for doing diffs over hundreds of files at the same time, especially if there are also binary files among them.

On Tuesday, I again fought with git, because there was a tiny glitch in the Qt build that had gotten committed: a wrong --prefix parameter had been passed, causing an in correct QT_INSTALL_PREFIX being baked into qmake and other Qt binaries…

Biking + leafs = fa(i)(l)l

For the first time in about 15 years, I fell with my bike.
I was biking very relaxed — I had plenty of time before the intern shuttle would arrive, and about 50—100 meters away from the shuttle stop, I decided to bike on the sidewalk. So I steered towards a driveway onto the sidewalk, through leafs, onto a very low border of the sidewalk, and poof, my wheels skidded and, not realizing what was happening, kept in riding position on my bike, while going horizontal, to start scratching the surface to reduce my velocity.

Result: several scrape wounds, but most importantly: (slightly) torn up jeans and jacket. They were my favorite! So the worst part of all of this is that I’ll have to go shopping again. Could’ve been worse! :)

The disturbing part is that two bypassers simply ignored what happened. One person just walked right past me. Without helping me a hand or even just asking if I’m okay, he walked right by.

Later that day, my Facebook swag1 order arrived, to make the day right again, so to speak.

Facebook swag!

Eating with the interviewer/boss

On Wednesday evening, Benjamin Billings — the Site Speed Team’s manager and also my original interviewer — and I went for German food in Palo Alto, to a place that unfortunately no longer existed, so we went to an Italian place instead (neither of us liked the Facebook café menu of that night). We talked about all things Facebook, U.S., European, Cambodian (where he’d just gone on a vacation) and whatnot.

There’s no akwardness about eating with your boss here at Facebook. That in itself is so insanely cool :)

Static build of Project Awesome Llama: VICTORY!

Yes, I did in fact name my intern project “Awesome Llama”. Because I like llamas. And because I can.

After having struggled with getting my project to build (statically linked to Qt, glibc, stdlibc++, and so on, see week 8) all Wednesday, I finally succeeded on Thursday. I couldn’t believe it had finally happened. This had taken about two weeks of frustrating attempts, but it had finally happened!

I put together an awesome oneliner that cloned the git repo for my project, built it, ran it and then performed an analysis on a stream containing several hours worth of data in less than 15 minutes.
This way, others could easily see my work in action.

Minutes after posting this awesome one-liner, we left with a bunch of the Site Speed team and some of the Site Reliability team for drinks. That’s right, we skipped dinner, and just went directly for beer + peanuts.
My dinner consisted of a Jack in the Box burger + fries at 22:00… :)


On Friday, I spent the better part of the day in Andrei Alexandrescu’s talks on C++11, of which the one on variadic templates was definitely the most interesting slash mind boggling one. I still have so much work ahead of me, but this was just a too interesting opportunity to pass on.

Okay (my mentor/manager) was okay with this. Once again: Facebook goes out of its way to ensure you stay motivated and keep learning new things!

  1. Every Facebook intern/employee gets a $50 Facebook swag store gift card when they start. ↩︎