The future of Kanbn

A bit over a year ago I was exploring alternative to Jira’s/Trello’s kanban boards. I was looking for something that would ideally not require an internet connection, and that I would be able to use without leaving my text editor. That lead me to Kanbn. It was a killer VSCode extension: it looked really good visually and it did most of what I needed it to do. The one issue I had with it at first was that it only allowed for one board per workspace, so I forked the repo and added support for an unlimited amount of boards per workspace.
A bit over a month ago I started an experiment where I set out weekly goals for myself, intending to follow up with a post about my progress each week on this blog. That lasted for a total of 2 weeks. I didn’t even end up making the update at the end of the second week. Can’t really consider that a success, as I was intending this to be a long term experiment.
It’s been a productive week. I had ambitious goals in my last post. Some of them went well, some didn’t, but nothing goes perfectly the first time. Now that I have one data point, a point of reference, I can strive to do a little bit better next week! Week review Limiting addictions time wasters Zero chess! Neither playing, nor watching on Youtube. As for Youtube, I still haven’t quite figured out a way to measure my time accurately, and I think I quite often go over the 1 hour mark I set for myself each day.
This blog post is either the stupidest or the best thing I’m doing this year. Hi reader! I’m Zigmas, I’m a software engineer by day, and a thoughtful guy also by day (I have a lot of thoughts about a lot of things). I have been thinking about what I’m doing with my life, what I want to be doing in 5 years, and I decided that these don’t match up, so it’s time for some changes.
I decided to share the way in which I have set up my competitive programming environment, as I think there are quite a few cool things to share here. I will focus more on my reasoning for doing things my way than the implementation details (though there is a link to all the code at the end of the blog post). Firstly the boring stuff: I use Ubuntu, write my programs in VSCode, and compile and run them with the in-built terminal.

Massive blog update

Since I start this blog back in spring I have made a multitude of changes to how the blog looks and functions. It has taken me way longer than I expected but I can finally say that I am (mostly) happy with the result, to the point that I finally feel proud to share it with others! In this post I want to share my journey of getting to this point, as a person who knows just enough Liquid / Jekyll / (S)CSS to get by.
Competition on CTF time: Google CTF I participated in the 2020 Google CTF competition and even though I only managed to solve only 2 of the problems, I found the competition very educational and want to share my solutions. Basics This was the easy hardware challenge, and it was fairly straightforward. All it involved was reading and understanding a SystemVerilog file, as well as an emulator written in C. That being said, I am a complete noob when it comes to hardware design languages, and I am quite lazy, so I guessed my way through most of the syntax.
I recently participated in the GSA ULTRA 2020 summer competition. I have been participating in GSA ULTRA competitions since 2018, but this was the first time that I seriously tried for the top prizes. Here I present my solutions, in what I consider to be more or less increasing order of difficulty. As there were almost 20 problems in the competition, this is an extra long blog post. I tried to trim a lot of the statements and did not include the code so that the post is as concise as possible.
Competition on CTF time: CSI CTF Final position: #100 / 1022 I was responsible for the web, pwn, linux and reversing challenges, and feel that I have done pretty well. I did most of the challenges from the first wave of challenges, as well as several from the second wave. Here I present a brief summary of how I did them. Misc Miscellaneous challenges tend to be the easiest ones for me as I’m still a beginner in most security concepts, but have a lot of competitive programming experience and random knowledge about programming languages.
Competition on CTFTime: RGB CTF Final position: #58/1047 This was the first CTF I ever participated in with a team. We almost made it into the top 50, which I consider to be a big success! I did Misc, Pwn, Web and the special ZTC challenges (and honestly mostly just Misc, as I am still quite a noob). Here I present an overview of the problems that I solved. Misc I generally excel at Misc challenges, as I have a lot of algorithmic knowledge and random knowledge about quirks of different tools.