September 1, 2002 - Personal Web Site: I'm going to Namibia with the Peace Corps to teach physics

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Namibia: Peace Corps Namibia : The Peace Corps in Namibia: September 1, 2002 - Personal Web Site: I'm going to Namibia with the Peace Corps to teach physics

By Admin1 (admin) on Friday, August 15, 2003 - 9:39 am: Edit Post

I'm going to Namibia with the Peace Corps to teach physics

I'm going to Namibia with the Peace Corps to teach physics

Personal info for wingo

This person is currently certified at Journeyer level.

Name: Andy Wingo


Notes: I've worked some on GStreamer, and dabble in other things. Right now, I'm teaching math and science in rural northern Namibia.

This person is:

* a Developer on project GStreamer.

Recent diary entries for wingo:

2 Jun 2003 »

... mumble mumble no update mumble mumble...


I've been on holiday for the last month. Some of the time was spent in Windhoek, but most was at home doing some work on...


I've been thinking a lot recently about electronic music. After a lot of thinking, a lot of reading, and a lot of poking about on the internet, I eventually remembered Paul Davis talking about supercollider on linux-audio-dev a long time ago. The ideas expressed in that project and the solutions it came up with impressed me quite a bit, so I started toying around with creating an implementation of its ideas using my new guile bindings for gstreamer as a backend. I got out my first little bleeps and bloops, which was immensely satisfying -- three years being in and out of various projects, finally doing the thing that I wanted to from the very beginning. The road to goal completion is a twisted one! For now it's in CVS over at, don't know if it's gettable via pserver or not...

26 Feb 2003 »

Greetings from Africa! There are many things to say about Namibia, but there's one thing in particular that might be of interest to the hacker community -- the prevalence of linux in this country. At least at the school level. I am typing on my laptop at the minute, but beside me (in my school's new library) is one server and three thin clients, all running SuSE 7.3 with KDE desktops. The server is a PII 266. 2 clients are 486/66's and one is a P133. The kids just love them. They like to write letters, even if they aren't going anywhere. They make paintings and they play games, well at least until today when I chmodded the games -x.

The computers are all old donated computers are are administered by a company called Schoolnet Namibia, Each school gets a domain for email, eg, powered by fetchmail/sendmail. We just now got some kind of wireless internet connection connecting us to a network in a larger town, so we can access the internet all the time for cheap. It's delightful, and the kids just can't get enough. The only problem with the computers is that we don't have enough for a class to use them -- squeeze as they might, you can only get about 6 people on a computer.

I'm writing for two things, one to say that we're getting a hell of a lot of use out of these 10 year old machines, and two to encourage donations to keep coming, wherever they go. There's some pretty anxious kids out there who would just love them.

5 Oct 2002 »

Monthly postings, so it goes.


Just about got a release out the door. Having a bit of trouble garnering interest for it, though -- sometimes there are just things that everyone wants done but no one wants to actually do. It makes me a bit pessimistic about free sw development, but that's probably just my social character; I enjoy doing things in a group more than alone. Go figure.

I suppose my concern is partly on a practical note, given that I leave the country on the 25th for two years. 14 hour layover in Amsterdam, yay :-) (peace corps -- namibia)

Code-wise it of course means that I need to wrap things up. I suppose that applies more generally across my life right now too. Sell the truck, pack up my stuff, get rid of many things. I don't want anything that woud force me to come back to the US -- If I do come back, I would prefer it to be a conscious choice.


So what are things going to be like in a couple of years? I'm a G* man myself, so my speculation is somewhat limited to the Gtk+/Gnome/Gst world I suppose. Also linux audio dev as well. Will there be a decent, free non-linear editor by then? Will ardour be in widespread use in studios? Will there be an integration of SVG in the desktop? What about the office products, where will they be with respect to M$? C#? Will mono have taken over mindshare by then?

Will I ever code in C again? Probably so, but damn, it's about time to stop.

Will my mom run linux? Probably not. Maybe five years, maybe.

Will I have to give a blood sample to play my cd's?

The questions. It's a nice time to think right now, being on the edge of leaving for a while. I'll probably have another entry before I do shove off -- until then, happy hacking.

1 Sep 2002 »

Been a little while.

So, the news:


I'm going to Namibia with the Peace Corps to teach physics. I leave in October for three months of training there, which is followed by two years of service. I'm quite excited about the whole thing :)

I would like to see if I can't get a community-based recording studio started up. I'll have some facilities in the school, but it would be really nice to have a network connection. I'm going to fix up my laptop for audio work and get a little mixer, maybe four channels or something. If anyone has equipment, advice, or leads on some funding that would be most useful. Thanks.


I've been plugging away at GStreamer's editor still. I hate having menu items that don't do anything, so I decided to make it feature-complete before releasing. I'd also like to make it threadsafe so that video can be played reliably.

In other news, GStreamer is in debian experimental now, yay! Thanks go to David Schleef and dlehn.


Still waiting tables, blah. That won't last too long. Five year high school reunion coming up soon, should be fun.

11 Aug 2002 »

bgeiger: Thanks for the suggestion. At first I thought, "Some POS self-help book from some..." -- then I realized that it's the same George Leonard sensei who posts to aikiweb and I understood. He writes the most insightful stuff over there, I'll actually see if I can't get a copy of his book now. Thanks!

That makes me wonder what the interfaces are between coding and other endeavors. Somehow, through this book, the implicit suggestion is that Leonard sensei's understanding, his mastery of aikido enabled him to formulate something that could apply to various aspects of life. What does coding tell us, then? When one reaches the status of 'master', are there any applications to other things? Mastery not, of course, meaning the color of your n ame on advo.

One thing I've been learning recently is that if a problem looks tough, something is wrong with the way I'm looking at it. Some things are more complicated than others, naturally, but I get the feeling that there are more simple answers than we expect. Maybe in programming, we might just have to re-orient our algorithmic coordinate system so that we can more clearly see the correct solution in algorithm-space.

Gah, I sound like a flake.

On a lighter note, I had a weekend of debauchery, more or less. Loitering, partying, staying out late and getting up in the afternoon. Some working on the new raleigh aikikai dojo -- we're building sprung floors, it's nice.

The first fall leaves that I've seen fell today. Pin oaks. Summer quickly fading into pumpkin season.

13 older entries...

This person has certified others as follows:

* wingo certified thomasvs as Journeyer

* wingo certified Uraeus as Journeyer

* wingo certified hadess as Journeyer

* wingo certified dobey as Journeyer

* wingo certified omega as Master

* wingo certified stevebaker as Journeyer

* wingo certified ncm as Master

* wingo certified habes as Journeyer

* wingo certified dlehn as Journeyer

* wingo certified lmjohns3 as Journeyer

Others have certified this person as follows:

* thomasvs certified wingo as Journeyer

* Uraeus certified wingo as Journeyer

* wardv certified wingo as Journeyer

* tnt certified wingo as Journeyer

* hadess certified wingo as Journeyer

* async certified wingo as Journeyer

* dobey certified wingo as Journeyer

* stevebaker certified wingo as Journeyer

* habes certified wingo as Journeyer

* DarthEvangelusII certified wingo as Journeyer

* dlehn certified wingo as Journeyer

* ishamael certified wingo as Journeyer

* lmjohns3 certified wingo as Journeyer

* ncm certified wingo as Journeyer

* linn certified wingo as Journeyer

* dolphy certified wingo as Journeyer

* mpr certified wingo as Journeyer

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This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Namibia; Physics; Linux



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