Kevin Braunsdorf better known as ksb

Most people (like my Mother) call me Kayessbee. That all started when my 3 year old daughter started coming to work with me. I have team members named "Kevin", "Scott", and "Braunsdorf" all working in the same area. When someone wanted to notify me that the daughter needed me, they had to call me by a unique name. At that same time we dropped the local site policy that said all admin accounts had to start with an `a', so I got `ksb' rather than `agt') as my login and everyone started calling me Kayessbee. I even put that on my USENIX and LISA badges.

So it stuck.

Curriculum vitae

Graduated from Purdue Unversity in December 1988 with a Bachelor of Science in both Systems and General Computer Science. I worked there for the University's Computing Center from 1986 to 1994. I also ran the Purdue Daemons where, in 1993, Ian Murdock was inspired by William and Duan's X windows talk to put together Debian Linux. Mostly because it was so hard to get X installed.

While there I substituted for various professors, gave introduction talks to freshmen, and taught the co-operative extension classes for C, shell, and sometimes others. My C class was still available at the (Potter) library last I checked. Oh, and I wrote test for the bash project, which became /bin/test for most Linux distros. Rich (rsk) and I also stopped the Morris worm. I was the moderator of comp.sources.reviewed, and published a few Usenix/Lisa papers together with my student programmers. I wrote another classic program: math.sed, the renowned sed calculator. After a daemon's meeting where we talked about how a novice user might view an open source version of UNIX, I wrote a little rant. That posting changed a lot of people's minds about how important documentation, error messages are to most people. I published file entombing with Matt Bradburn. Then a popular version of the serial line console server that originally came from Purdue's ECN and Ohio State's Tom Fine. I also wrote the first shell interface to flock(2), which was published in an AIX-based magazine (the new Linux one had a timeout, how sad).

In late 1994 I moved to FedEx. I was hired to help with the remote configuration of field devices, so I brought all the code I wrote at Purdue with me. Most of those tools I still use and have kept up-to-date. Now days we call this "configuration engineering", because we actually have doctrine that guides us -- not just a set of hacks which we "make do".

I convinced a few of my friends to follow me to FedEx; working with people I knew and the great people at FedEx made my transition sweet. But I didn't stay in that position very long; instead I was asked to architect the new www.fedex.com web presence. My friends and I built a great dmz/zmd/admin network structure that we still use today.

I also taugh C at State Tech in Memphis (which now has a different name). I really enjoy teaching, and I got great reviews from my students. I'd, more than likely, be a teacher (as my parents are) if it paid as well as Technical Fellow of Operations at FedEx does. I submitted patches to the FreeBSD project, like fixing math in m4 in 2004.

I moved to Colorado Springs in 2011, when FedEx opened a new data-center. I helped design the air-flow, power, and the race/rack structures. I pride myself on almost never having to visit the data-center: it is supposed to a lights-out operation, and "no visits" means we are winning.

Now I work on special projects. I solve problems other people don't know we have until I fix them. It is a good life.

Why "npcguild.org"?

When we played D&D we always had to subtly prevent the player characters from killing key non-player characters. If they massed their power to take out someone who was going to tell them a key bit of information, then the game was a lot harder to play. So we made all the harmless non-player character part of the NPC Guild: they wore jackets. Killing any jacket-wearing NPC was a recipe for an untimely setback from his guild members. This makes playing D&D a lot more fun.

I thought that was a great "hack" to the game. And it stuck. I've seen NPCGuild T-shirts and such (which have nothing to do with this site, or me)! So I've had the domain name since I moved to Memphis.

Topics of interest

April 10 UCCS slides as a PDF.

My npcguild.org e-mail addresses is back. I read it about 2 times a week.

As I recover my old webpages and build new ones I'll fill in this section. For now see the ReadMe index.

UCCS Apr 29 2015 DataXCenterXPrimer.pdf.


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