Personal info for Stevey

This person is currently certified at Master level.

Name: Steve Kemp



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 [For the curious I live in Edinburgh, Scotland ..]

 I'm a big believer in the benefits of the open source software, so much so that I joined the Debian Project where I can help those who've given us so much.

 On other fronts here's a small list of some of the projects and applications I've contributed to or worked upon:

 My largest single contribution to the OS world is the GNU MP3 / OGG streaming, written in 100% C++.

 GNUMP3d is now included in Debian GNU/Linux, SuSE Linux, and other distribtions such as Gentoo and FreeBSD.

 If you want me to .. I will program for cool stuff ;)

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Recent diary entries for Stevey:

19 Jan 2004  »


I updated my Debian personal page, to make it look prettier.

Those pages host the my SSP compiler packages and not very much else.

I've also been working on the new improved logcheck program which is now almost redone in perl.

Right now my biggest pain is the argument parsing. I wish to use Getopt::Long - but it's painful as the command line flags I wish to use are descriptive and do not match the old ones.

Essentially I have the choice, I can reuse the old command line args, or I can be non-backwards-compatible and just change them.

In the interests of clarity and "niceness" I wish to do the later, in the interest of least suprise and non-breakage I must do the former.

I can't bring myself to decide, I don't imagine this script is used by many people in anything other than the default manner ..


It's been satisfying working on the new LiveJournal valentine system this is my first usage of CGI::Session, CGI::Application and friends and I like them. A lot.

Already I'm very close to having it completed, although there does need to be more testing.

8 Jan 2004  »

Matt Hope:

I believe that if you wish your password reset on Advogato you should mail raph politely and wait.

There are several password reminding patches around for the site; including a quick hack I wrote, but nothing in the main site; it's just a case of storing your cookie safely and hoping you don't forget!


I adopted the libnids1 package as it is only used by dsniff the package I maintain. libnids1 was the recently updated to cover a security problem (DSA-410) so I had to adopt this package or dsniff would become unavailable to me.

Still looking for a decent system of organising audits and getting more involvement. As time goes on I'm getting less convinced that people will help which is unfortunate.

7 Jan 2004  »


Waiting for some more DSA's and hoping to move the Debian Auditing Project to a new location.

By some fluke I managed to register which is where I've started building up a collection of shellcode examples for different platforms - more appreciated.

This is also the location where I discussed my GCC patches and kernel modules - which I must look at porting to 2.6.x.

As well as that I must make a few more package updates - it seems that I can now. There have been things holding me up, ranging from the compromise to the alioth problems.

I'm still desperate to start working properly on the

rewrite although it's looking increasingly likely that I will have to do this alone.

I will upload my design documents to the Alioth repository and start commiting stuff to CVS - I think that's working again now.

5 Jan 2004  »


Now that these entries are being being syndicated it might be worth the time to give a real introduction.

Normally this kind of thing is discussed in my livejournal where I ramble about things - plan pub trips with local users, and etc.

So I'll try to avoid stuff that has been recently covered in there.

(I'll also leave out anything that's rude; which is a large part of my life ;)

I'm 27 living in Edinburgh, the location of the Scottish Parliment the wonderful Edinburgh Castle and other fine attractions.

I've been living in Edinburgh for 9 years now and still think that it's a beautiful city, lots of old buildings, interesting scenery, and large chunks of greenery appear randomly inside the city.

The only city in the world that I've visitted and liked more than Edinburgh was Barcelona. I was lucky enough to work on an EU funded project which was in conjunction with The University of Catalonia, the University of Edinburgh and a commercial partner.

Day to day life for me involves waking up around 7AM, playing with my lovely cat snatching a quick cup of coffee before moving into work at around 8:30/8:45.

The walk to work is brief and takes me over a nice park/field/piece of grass and down a couple of cobbled streets.

Once at work I remain there until around 5:30pm barring a trip outside for lunch.

Upon returning home the rest of the night is usally spent in a combination of watching films, stroking Six, calling friends, going to the pub, and talking to wonderful people online.

Weekends are very different. The weekend is the time I like to spend in bed until mid morning: 11AM 1PM or later.

The weekend is also where I like to walk around the city shopping, flirting, having a nice time.

That's probably a nice summery - and I didn't even mention sadism. Oops did now... ;)


Russell Coker brought up an interesting point about the SSP patched compiler I put together - protected binaries read from /dev/urandom.

It hadn't occurred to me that this might be a sensitive issue, but apparently under SELinux access to dev/u?random is prohibitted by default.

I might see if I can make this tweakable and optionally allow rand() to be used instead - but that will weaken the randomness of the chosen numbers and may be a bad thing to do. I shall have to consider it.

Security work continues I've got some more alerts pending one waiting for clarification by the upstream author of the software to make sure I'm not misunderstanding what I've discovered.

I accidently reported one bug to wrong address - meaning that many many Debian developers saw it instead of the security team. I've removed the wrong address from Mutt's address book to ensure this doesn't happen again - but I do feel very guilty and embaressed about it.

2 Jan 2004  »

Valentines Day

Last year I put together a quick hack - double-blind Valentines day matching aimed at LiveJournal users.

Now it's time for this years version.

It seems strange to me to be working on this in my own time, for nothing other than the slight chance that people will appreciate it. I'm wondering at my motivation and I cannot quite pin it down, but I'm having fun.

(For reference last years implementation was the result of my very definate interest in one lady, and also as a fun way to spend a weekend. Yes the lady worked out well ;)

"Large" CGI Applications

I've been working on this application for around four days now - maybe longer.

After flirting with PHP I've settled on using Perl. I like perl, perl is good.

So far I'm using a mixture of CGI::Application, HTML::Template, CGI::Session and DBI.

I haven't used all of these modules before, and using them together is proving to be interesting.

I have no idea why I've not used CGI::Application before - it does have a few flaws - but it's a wonderful framework for building "page-centric" applications. I'm having fun.

Ditto for CGI::Session, rather than rolling my own login functionality I just create a session object - and let it keep track of people being logged in, etc. Wonderful.

My code isn't wonderful and is still evolving but for the moment the site is here - and the code is here. (The code relies upon some templates).

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