Wed, 03 Dec 2003

My first Open Source contribution

This morning, Jonathan Lundquist and I found and fixed a bug in the Squid Web Proxy Cache. I'm not sure about Jonathan, but it was my first, direct contribution to Open Source and a rewarding experience.

It took my knowledge of the Linux development environment, tools, and protocol for creating and submitting a patch; and it took Jonathan's excellent analysis and debugging skills to quickly locate the bug and suggest a patch. Individually, it may have taken either of us 2 days to find and fix the problem in totally foreign code. But together, we found it, fixed it, made a report including a patch in under 2 hours.

I think it is rare to find a working relationship that multiplies productivity that way. Several years ago, Jonathan and I wrote the first version of a Windows based application in a single 30+ hour session, passing the keyboard back and forth. That product has gone through many revisions with thousands of man hours invested, but the core of the application still consists of the code we wrote in those 30-some-odd hours.

Sadly, after 12 years working closely together, that working relationship will end, soon. Jonathan has accepted a position as CFO of for one of our clients. Good luck, Jonathan. I'll miss you most when debugging code on my own!

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CSS stolen from Tom Coates who didn't even complain.