Simon Willison’s Weblog


Monday, 10th July 2023

Latent Space: Code Interpreter == GPT 4.5 (via) I presented as part of this Latent Space episode over the weekend, talking about the newly released ChatGPT Code Interpreter mode with swyx, Alex Volkov, Daniel Wilson and more. swyx did a great job editing our Twitter Spaces conversation into a podcast and writing up a detailed executive summary, posted here along with the transcript. If you’re curious you can listen to the first 15 minutes to get a great high-level explanation of Code Interpreter, or stick around for the full two hours for all of the details.

Apparently our live conversation had 17,000+ listeners! # 10:06 pm

Lima VM—Linux Virtual Machines On macOS (via) This looks really useful: “brew install lima” to install, then “limactl start default” to start an Ubuntu VM running and “lima” to get a shell. Julia Evans wrote about the tool this morning, and here Adam Gordon Bell includes details on adding a writable directory (by default lima mounts your macOS home directory in read-only mode). # 7:01 pm

At The Guardian we had a pretty direct way to fix this [the problem of zombie feature flags]: experiments were associated with expiry dates, and if your team’s experiments expired the build system simply wouldn’t process your jobs without outside intervention. Seems harsh, but I’ve found with many orgs the only way to fix negative externalities in a shared codebase is a tool that says “you broke your promises, now we break your builds”.

jbreckmckye # 6:53 pm

Why We Replaced Firecracker with QEMU (via) Hocus are building a self-hosted alternative to cloud development environment tools like GitPod and Codespaces. They moved away from Firecracker because it’s optimized for short-running (AWS Lambda style) functions—which means it never releases allocated RAM or storage volume space back to the host machine unless the container is entirely restarted. It also lacks GPU support. # 3:09 pm

2023 » July