Autosketch: running 1989 software on modern day hardware.

This article describes how to run Autosketch 2.0 for Dos (dated 1989) on modern day hardware. I consider this a triumph of magic, legacy compatibility, open source software and computing in general. After all, 23 years have passed since the release of Autosketch 2.0 and such an amount of time in the computing domain is equivalent to geological aeons in real life: to be able to still run 23 year old software with no degradation is nothing short of astounding.



The Product Manager interview @ Google

Like a million other articles already out there, I want to spend some minutes to chat about interviewing in Google. I’ll focus on interviews for Product Manager positions. Why that? Turns out there are quite a few resources out there for wanna-be software engineers (SWE) interviews, but not that much about PMs. As a result, I tend to see a skewed representation of what the PM role and associated interview is about. Why me? Over my time in Google I have interviewed over a hundred candidates, for a variety of roles and PM ones have always been the most difficult to gauge (for me being a software engineer). The usual disclaimer applies: what follows are the opinions of mine and not necessarily those of my employer. Also, there are bazillions other people @google, so consider that my opinion is just one among the group and not necessarily the most representative one.



Borg 3.2 is out

Quick post to announce the release of Borg version 3.2. Borg is the minimalistic cms and blog engine that powers this website. The release includes a new visual theme, kennedy, inspired by the Google+ look and feel. As usual, the new theme supports both desktop, tablet and smartphone users. Learn more at the project page, or look at the code directly on GitHub.



Book Review: Last Light

I just finished reading Last Light, by Alex Scarrow and I highly recommend it if you haven’t header of of it before. If you are into fiction centered around post-apocalyptic Britain (think Children of Men, or 28 Days Later), or you are even mildly interested about Peak Oil topics, you will surely enjoy this book as well.



This thing, I like.

One of the things I like best in London, if not the best, is going around by bike. I don’t mean the daily bike commute to and from work. I mean the occasional bicycle run across half of the city with no hurry to reach the destination. Update: August 7th, another trip from Fulham up to Hampstead Heath, with photos.



Google Chart Tools at London GTUG

On June 29th, I presented Google Chart Tools at the London GTUG (Google Technology User Group). Thanks to all the people that attended the event and to Mark Lunney for organizing the event. Feel free to browse all the presentation slides here or download them as a zip file. The presentation uses an HTML5 template, so please use a recent Chrome, Firefox or Safari browser to navigate it. (also please excuse the underlying code, it’s not as clean as it should be :-) ). If you have any questions, direct them to me at battlehorse at gmail dot com or via twitter at twitter.com/battlehorse. Happy charting!



Chart Tools at Google I/O 2011: Video

I should have posted this before, but here is the video for the talk I (co-)presented at Google I/O 2011: Using Google Chart Tools to create interactive dashboards.



Life with a Chromebook

I have been using a ChromeOs cr-48 device for a few weeks now, and these are my findings. I tried using the cr-48 for as many tasks as I could, including writing, image editing and even coding. Am I satisfied with the device? For some tasks, it’s just awesome. For other things, the entire cloud model is still not just there, either because of completely broken workflows, or small details.



Live Javascript Editor

I released on github a small project called Live Javascript Editor. LJE is a simple javascript app that lets you type and execute Javascript code and snippets on the fly. Its main purpose is to help a speaker present and illustrate Javascript code to an audience, like you would do during a tech conference.



Borg 3.1 is out, and on github

I have released a new version of the Borg CMS that powers this blog (and is free for anyone to use for their own sites). Among the major new features: improved readability for the theme you are currently looking at, improved rendering support for tablets (including the Xoom) and smartphones, new support for draft pages and license notices and more bugfixes. Also, borg is now 100% hosted on github. You can find it here.

Hi there

The name is Riccardo Govoni. I’m a Software Engineer working in Google London. I have a passion for data visualizations, data mining, theoretical physics, xkcd, having lots of vi (or emacs, depending on the mood) buffers on screen and coding in general. Learn more about me.

Additional Resources

Have a look at the site blog, the Site map or a selection of some of the projects I work on (mostly in my spare time, likely to be out of date).

Featured Projects

Rhizosphere, is an innovative project to provide in-browser html-based spatial navigation and interaction on structured data.

Borg, brand new v3.2 is out!