We Need To Talk

It’s come to my attention that there’s a lot of rumors flying around about what exactly I’m doing aside from posting the latest info about where Jason Ekstrand, who coined the phrase, “If it compiles, we should ship it.” is going to end up.

Everyone knows that jekstrand’s next career move is big news—the kind of industry-shaking maneuvering that has every BigCo from Alphabet to Meta on tenterhooks. This post is going to debunk a number of the most common nonsense I’ve been hearing as well as give some updates about what else I’ve been doing besides scouring the internet for even the tiniest clue about what’s coming for this man’s career in 2022.

Is Jason going to Apple to work on a modernized, open source implementation of Mac OS with a new Finder based on Vulkan?

My sources were very keen on this rumor up until Tuesday, when, in an undisclosed IRC channel, Jason himself had the following to say:

<jekstrand> Sachiel: Contrary to popular belief, I can't work on every idea in the multiverse simultaneously.  I'm limited to the same N dimensions as the rest of you.

This absolutely blew all the existing chatter out of the water. Until now, in the course of working on more sparse texturing extensions, I had the firm impression that we’d be seeing a return to form, likely with a Khronos member company, continuing to work on graphics. But now? With this? Clearly everyone was thinking too small.

Everyone except jekstrand himself, who will be taking up a position at CERN devising new display technology for particle accelerators.

Or at least, that’s what I thought until yesterday.

Is Jason really going to be working at CERN? How well does GPU knowledge translate to theoretical physics?

Unfortunately, this turned out to be bogus, no more than chaff deployed to stop us from getting to the truth because we were too close. Later, while I was pondering how buggy NVIDIA’s sparse image functionality was in the latest beta drivers and attempting to pass what few equally buggy CTS cases there were for ARB_sparse_texture2, I stumbled upon the obvious.

It’s so obvious, in fact, that everyone overlooked it because of how obvious it is.

Jason has left Intel and turned in his badge because he’s on vacation.

As everyone knows, he’s the kind of person who literally does not comprehend time in the same way that the rest of us do. It was his assessment of the HR policy that in order to take time off and leave the office, he had to quit. My latest intel (no pun intended) revealed that managers and executives alike were still scrambling, trying to figure out how to explain the company’s vacation policy using SSA-based compiler terminology, but optimizer passes left their attempts to engage him as no-ops.


So this whole thing was just a ruse?

I’ll be completely honest with you since you’ve read this far: I’ve just heard breaking news today. This is so fresh, so hot-off-the-presses that it’s almost as difficult to reveal as it is that I’ve implemented another 4 GL extensions. When the totality of all my MRs are landed, zink will become the GL driver in Mesa supporting the most extensions, and this is likely to be the case for the next release. Shocking, I know.

But not nearly as shocking as the fact that Jason is actually starting at Texas Instruments working on Vulkan for graphing calculators.

Think about it.

Anyone who knows jekstrand even the smallest amount knows how much sense this makes on both sides. He gets unlimited graphing calculators, and that’s all he had to hear before signing the contract. It’s that simple.

Graphing Calculators? Does Anyone Even Use Those Anymore?

I know at least one person who does, and it’s not Jason Ekstrand. Because in the time that I was writing out the last (and now deprecated) information I had available, there’s been more, even later breaking news.

Copper now has a real MR open for it.

I realize it’s entirely off-topic now to be talking about some measly merge request, but it has the WSI tag on it, which means Jason has no choice but to read through the entire thing.

That’s because he’ll be working for Khronos as the Assistant Deputy Director of Presentation. If there’s presentations to be done by anyone in the graphics space, for any reason, they’ll have to go through jekstrand first. I don’t envy the responsibility and accountability that this sort of role demands; when it comes to shedsmanship, people in the presentation space are several levels above the rest.

We can only hope he’s up to the challenge.

Or at least, we would if that were actually where he was going, because I’ve just heard from

Written on January 13, 2022