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Comment Every action has an equal and opposite reaction (Score 1) 230

Barnes & Noble, which paid almost $14 million for Borders' intellectual assets (including customer information) at auction last week, said it should not have to comply with certain customer-privacy standards recommended by a third-party ombudsman.

In unrelated news, I say customers should not buy anything from Barnes and Noble ever again.

Comment Re:Linux already runs on thousands of cores (Score 3, Interesting) 462

Um, no. The early Itanium-based Altixes (Altices?) could go up to 512 cores running a single copy of Linux. The new Nehalem-based Altixes can have up to 2048 cores in a single system image IIRC. We just finished acceptance testing on an SGI Altix UV 1000 with 1024 cores. It runs one copy of Linux on it.

Comment Parallel programming is hard, film at 11. (Score 5, Informative) 626

The /. summary of TFA is almost exquisitely bad. It's not Window or Linux that's not ready for multicore (as both have supported multi-processor machines for on the order of a decade or more), but rather the userspace applications that aren't ready. The reason is simple: Parallel programming is rather hard, and historically most ISVs have haven't wanted to invest in it because they could rely on the processors getting faster every year or two... but no longer.

One area where I disagree with TFA is the claimed paucity of programming models and tools. Virtually every OS out there supports some kind of concurrent programming model, and often more than one depending on what language is used -- pthreads, Win32 threads, Java threads, OpenMP, MPI or Global Arrays on the high end, etc. Most debuggers (even gdb) also support debugging threaded programs, and if those don't have enough heft, there's always Totalview. The problem is that most ISVs have studiously avoided using any of these except when given no other choice.

--t

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