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LinuxPower: Interviewing GNOME Hacker Michael Meeks

May 18, 2000, 17:31 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Christian F.K. Schaller)

"After our tremendous success with the Christopher Blizzard interview we are now back again with another great developer interview. Even though he has a busy schedule with a large workload at both University and with Helix Code, Michael Meeks was kind enough to set of some time to answer our questions. He is one of the most productive talents among the GNOME hackers and has acquired a lot of respect and admiration for his work on projects such as Gnumeric and Bonobo. In addition to that he is the main architect of the gb project. I think many of you will be surprised when you learn what that is."

"LP: How long have you been involved with the GNOME project and what got you involved originally?

[MM:] I started playing with free software, particularly DJ's port of gcc to DOS, at age 17 or so. It was rather a heretical move from assembler for me. I soon found that profiling, rather than the ouija method of optimization, yielded better results. In a similar vein, in June 1998, I started on mahjongg writing the solubility code. Then I took on Excel import in gnumeric, this project consumed rather more time and was a very formative period. It was an amazing experience to work with like minded hackers and benefit from their criticism and experience. It also gave a huge amount of satisfaction to craft, and re-craft some of the internals of gnumeric each time adding more finesse and polish."

"LP: You recently started working for Helix Code, how has that experience been?

[MM:] Absolutely incredible. Helix Code is a big group of friends who get together to support people who want to make GNOME happen. We believe in truly free ( as in freedom ) software, and all our software is produced under the terms of the GNU GPL. We also hope to make both current GNOME hackers and users fabulously wealthy. Whilst we do it we also happen to have a great deal of fun and an amazing sense of achievement."

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