PDF Insider Demo

A small, on the fly video presentation of my new utility.



The emphasis of this application stands on parsing correctly the PDF format, if it can’t because the PDF is malformed (very common among malicious PDFs), then it provides the tools to read the objects nonetheless. I tested it on many PDF (also malicious ones) and it handles all of them very well.

As I have written this application in five days, there are still some small features I’d like to add, but most of the code is already there. I started the development of it quite some time ago on a weekend while I was sick at home and have found only now the time to finish it.

I have no plans about how and when to release it yet, but some friends of mine will start using it in real world scenarios.

P.S. Thanks to Alessandro Gario for the throughout testing.

CFF & Rebel.NET Update

Fixed some bugs in both applications.
In particular, made some part of the CFF Explorer more robust. The current CFF Explorer still contains the core I wrote when I was 19yo. The newer kernel, which I don’t know if I’ll ever get the time to finish, doesn’t have the same problems. Anyway, this should improve rebuilding, resources importing and displaying of .NET table elements with extremely long names (more than 4096 characters).

My first month at Hex-Rays

At the beginning of September I started looking for a job. I actually wanted a job to work from remote. Despite the fact that I got several offers, all of them required relocation. So in the end I saw the Hex-Rays hiring announcement on Woodmann and sent out my résumé. From all the relocations, Belgium was the nearest and best connected one and of course it’s a very good job.

The first month at Hex-Rays has been tough on all fronts. Mainly because of the relocation and getting used to work in an office. Now work is proceeding well, but the rest is still difficult. Having one day of sun here in Belgium would help, by the way.

Musil wrote in his life’s work that modern man is spending his life always increasing his level of expertise, remaining with a millimeter of specialistic knowledge which only few people in the world could really understand. The others, talking about his millimeter would only say stupid things and he himself can’t move from his own millimeter without running into the same problem.
I think I found my millimeter in the IT world. However, I can’t stand still on it. I always keep moving with exasperated restlessness.

I have written in the last 2 years at least 5 programs of bigger size which are almost complete, but as I’m now working at Hex-Rays they will have to wait. When I was writing mostly software on my own I did it almost entirely to be active in something. Now that I’m working on IDA every day I feel that my need of being active is fulfilled and I don’t feel the need to write more code when I’m at home. Instead, I feel the need of art.

Why haven’t I tried producing art instead of programming already? Because I have always been capable of judging my own work objectively and I know when the time is not right.

What’s the difference between programming and art? Both need experience. The difference is that one can build one’s technical experience alone in one’s room, without the help of events, social interaction, etc. In a technical field it is possible to make the time needed for experience advance faster. Viceversa, in one’s reflections about life one has to actually follow the time of his own life.

I feel that something is changing about that.

Busy & Qt 4.6

I apologize if in the last time I couldn’t answer to emails without many days of delay, but I’m incredibly busy in my real life.
There is some important news I can’t yet talk about but will soon.

Also, yesterday the new Qt 4.6 has come out. For Windows developers good news: the sdk come with gcc 4.4 with patches for phonon, in case you don’t want to use Visual Studio (like myself). Among the new features: animation and state machine frameworks, multi-touch support, symbian support. Also many improvements in Qt Creator.

P.S. I wanted to publish this post several days ago, but pressed Save Draft instead of Publish.