Senior project ideas

William Tracy afishionado at
Mon Sep 1 19:10:03 PDT 2008


My name is William Tracy. I am a software engineering major at Cal
Poly State University. Right now, I am tossing around ideas for my
senior project.

I would really like to produce something that is actually helpful,
rather than producing yet another [raytracer|compiler|network stack]
that is only interesting in an academic context. I have always been
interested in Linux/Unix on the desktop, and think that Xorg is a
beautiful piece of software. After hearing how perennially
understaffed Xorg is, I had to pop in and see if I could build a
senior project around that.

I don't want to barge in and dump a bunch of unwanted patches on you,
so I'm here asking: Where could I actually be helpful?

Unfortunately, "Writing documentation" and "Fixing miscellaneous bugs"
don't look very good as senior project ideas. I'm looking for one
coherent entity I could work on for the next quarter or two. Either a
moderate-sized chunk of new functionality, or a swath of rotten old
code that just needs to be re-written and replaced would be good.

I have a lot of experience in C (and C++) and am quite comfortable
with system-level programming on Unix. However, I have never gotten
closer to X11 than the xlib API. I have not worked with the Xorg
internals before.

I am good at learning new technologies very fast, though. This summer
my boss asked me to learn JSP, and by the next week I had put together
a massive custom tag library. :-)

Anyway, thanks for reading, and keep up the good work!

William Tracy
afishionado at -- wtracy at

"We need a special holiday to honor the countless kind souls with
unsecured networks named 'linksys'."
 -- Randall Munroe

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