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Hack and Tell Round 19 Wrap up!

Subject: Round 19: Beware of the spooks.

(Have a complaint about this email? Want to make it better, fix a typo, or add more info? Fork the gist on GitHub!

Hello Hackers-

Thanks to Facebook NYC for hosting us! I always give Facebook a lot of crap, but they were very gracious hosts and even invited us back!

A fun way to spend some time...

Implement RC4 in your favorite language. It's not incredibly complicated, and it has many known weaknesses, but it's a fun exercise in crytographic meanderings. Then, you should of course share it on the list.

(See my implementation in Guile Scheme. It took 27 minutes to write and debug (at 5:30 in the morning). See? Quick.)

Projects Presented (in random-pseudo order)

Jay Goel

Jay hates GMail and most webmail clients, but is attempting to rectify that situation with Hipflask, an MUA over the web that can connect to multiple IMAP accounts.

[ I'm very excited about this and would love to have the free time to help out. If you have some free time and hate your mail situation please, please, contribute! -- ed]

Bjorne Roche

Bjorne wrote a basic command line guitar tuner so you can be even more nerdy when playing ukelele[0]. We were then treated to an impromptu concert, in which the singer was a little flat...

[Last minute weather substitution] Jay Goel

[ Round 19 was Jay's first Hack and Tell, and was very excited about presenting--he submitted 3 proposals! He got the chance to talk again after bad weather made a presenter cancel. Thanks Jay -- ed]

For Jay's second act, he showed us his version of most people's shoddy management of resumes. The punchline is bootstrap, and the setup is JSON. The climax though, is a very useful tool that could save many people a lot of frustration when writing a resume.

[Braindump] Zachary Kanfer

Zach showed us how he won a game of golf by implementing K-Means clustering in Arc. Not discussed is how K really means jibberish.

Moses Nakamaru

Moses showed us how he used parser combinators in Scala to create an argument parsing library that doesn't suck so bad.

[ What apartment did the pirate live in? 2RRRRRRRRRRRRRR! -- ed]

Aditya Mukerjee

Aditya is a data guy, and he and a few friends hacked together a way to collect real time sentiment on the presidential debates. [ Personally, it'd be more interesting to see it hooked up to someone undergoing Ludovico therapy -- ed]

Siraaj Khandkar

Conway's Game of Life, in Erlang (where each cell is a process!), awk and in OCaml.

Roman Shtylman

Roman shared with us his ventures into building Chrome Apps, which I guess you could consider Google's take on XUL? His first attempt, a full blown IRC client.

Announcements and Things to Watch out for...

Round 20 - Coming Soon

We've got two potential spaces lined up, so look for us again right before the holiday rush!

Coder Weekly [recycled from last time, but still great!]

I don't get much time to read the web these days, so I've been relying more and more on a weekly mailing list called Coder Weekly. It gets sent every weekend and has a good mix of interesting articles.

Clouds in many shapes and sizes...

Until next time!

Happy Hacking,

Andrew and James

[0]: Oh just kidding. I too have a ukelele, though I have no musical talent. On my ever long list of things to do is to learn to play punk rock covers on it.

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