Anti-Bio

Opposite of bio, and much more fun.


VAX VMS sysadmin (2001)

Known worldwide as shouting guy, Brendan is the inventor of the special tools for system administrators. These include bottom (opposite of top), psss (process status with star-sign), and 3rot13 (you can probably guess). He also authored the ged text editor: A graphical version of ed (a line editor) that adds sorely-needed productivity features such as sound effects, color themes, and a splash screen.

He can write code in many obsolete programming languages, including FORTRAN 77, Algol 60, logo, and GW-BASIC. He once developed and taught a programming class on embperl (Perl embedded in HTML). He authored the world's leading site on dtksh (the graphical Desktop Korn Shell), and for many years was the only person publishing dtksh code. He is also a contributor to the INTERCAL programming language, developing guess.i for the pit, and making commit #1 to its new location on gitlab.

He has expertise in other obsolete technologies. He became a well-known name in computing performance at Sun Microsystems, a tech giant that no longer exists, especially for the Solaris operating system. He co-authored the Solaris Performance and Tools book and edited Solaris Internals 2nd Edition. His first full-time job was as a VAX VMS programmer and system administrator, where he became proficient at loading reel-to-reel data tapes and reloading the continual paper feed (aka tractor feed) of teletypes. VAX VMS was already obsolete at the time he was using it.

His recent work includes using eBPF to develop a theremin (musical instrument) and software to make electric keyboards noisy. He types on a dvorak-layout keyboard.

He may be the only person, ever, to have been struck in the head by a grouse at over 50 mph. Both parties survived.


Last updated: 17-Jul-2021