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Comment Re:EMACS 2.0 (Score 1) 121

To be fair... Emacs 10.7 running on my Mac is currently consuming 150MB...

We've moved on past the days where we care how much memory this stuff takes up. If you're a developer you've probably got a pretty decent machine anyway.

I personally want more features... and more features means more memory and I'm happy to give it.

I did try Atom for a week and it wasn't quite ready for what I wanted to do with it and so I moved back to Emacs. I'm going to keep any eye on it though because the extensibility is CRAZY easy so there are going to be TONS of plugins built over time...

Comment Re:Slashdot Officially Sucks (Score 1) 86

Hehe - please don't label me a conspiracy theorist! ;-)

This is why I wanted to see the discussion - because my own intuition (which I totally agree is not based on any real world experience of such an event) led me to think that the ice hole wasn't right. Unfortunately, everyone was too damn busy making Soviet Russia meme jokes to actually talk about the physics involved...

But - we've now been able to have a bit of good discourse here in this thread and my understanding has definitely increased from the posts of others...

Comment Re:Slashdot Officially Sucks (Score 1) 86

Cool - I'm ok with that - that's why I came here to see some discussion ;-)

Mind providing some insight on why it wouldn't have? The car "analogy" above does give a good "feel" for why that hole wouldn't have been larger (although the terminal velocity of a rock would be somewhat higher than a car).

A bit of math / physics here would be insightful....

Comment Slashdot Officially Sucks (Score 5, Insightful) 86

After reading the summary and scanning the article (in true Slashdot fasion!) I went to look at the comments... and they are all complete drivel. Tons of stupid jokes and no actual discussion of the event. What the hell has happened here??

Anyway - back on topic: Does anyone else feel like that rock is WAY too big to have only left a 6m hole in the ice? That rock impacting the ice/water would have been an enormous event... it would have vaporized a ton of water and blown the ice away for at least several hundred feet.

Something doesn't add up here.

Comment Re:Benchmarks are bad metrics (Score 1) 258

As an aside - we just bought a couple of OCZ Revodrive 3 x2 (1TB each) cards and have been using them and benchmarking them over the last couple of days for scientific data analysis... DAMN they are fast! We're getting about 1.2GB/s (yes Bytes with a big B!) consecutive reads (which is was our main purpose happens to be).

The only downside we've found is spotty Linux (which, along with OSX is all we use... no Windows here) driver support. We have to actually use the commercial drivers for the Vertex and ZDXL... which are only precompiled for specific Linux kernel versions. Other than that the cards have worked great!

A bit back on topic - if this "turbo" mode were something any app could invoke somehow (with an API call for instance) then this wouldn't be a problem... but since they've only made it work with explicitly named executables it feels a bit underhanded....

Comment Re: Storage. (Score 1) 232

The only drives in my work machine are 3x512GB SSD's in a RAID0 array. This is to deal with datasets in the 300GB range that my code outputs as it runs on supercomputers (10,000+ cores).

When you're trying to make an animation that needs to read all 300GB serially through a file like that SSD's are a godsend.

Just last week I purchased a new workstation for tens of thousands of dollars (don't want to put the exact amount on here). It contains a 1TB "Revo" PCIE card (extremely fast SSD chips that plug into PCIE), 512GB of RAM and a Nvidia Quadro K6000 and a K5000.... all to accelerate this same workload...

Just because you can't think of workloads that would be useful with solid state drives doesn't mean they don't exist!

Comment Re: Storage. (Score 1) 232

I actually agree with this. I do large compiles all day long and when I switched to a 3xSSD RAID0 array I didn't see any improvement in compile time (but it did speed up everything else I do with large data loads). This is on a 12 core Mac Pro... so plenty of horsepower to keep the disks working during a compile.

In order to speed up compiling I just set up a 150+ core distcc array using 13 Mac Pros... THAT sped my compiling up by an order of magnitude!

Moral of the story: compiling is cpu bound.

Comment Simulation Visualization (Score 1) 41

I write massively parallel scientific simulation software for a living (the kind that runs on the biggest machines in the world)... and trying to come up with a way to display GBs or TBs of information from some of our largest simulations can be _tough_.

We use several open source packages ( Mostly and ), but most of our best visualizations are actual done using a commercial package ( )

For some examples check out the YouTube video here:

(That's me talking in the video). Those aren't necessarily our best visualizations - just some that happen to be on YouTube...

We find that the reactions to these simulations are mixed. They are certainly eye-pleasing... but sometimes if you go too far in making it look good it can actually turn scientists off. They will start to think that it looks "too good to be true" (I literally had a senior scientist in a room of 200 stand up at the end of one of my presentations and proclaim that "This is too good to be true!"). Because of this we try to do do just enough visualization that you can see all of the features of the simulation and understand what's happening without going overboard.

You have to realize that a lot of scientists still remember the days when they created line plots _by hand_ for publications! I suspect that as young scientists come up through the ranks this feeling that "slick graphics = not real" will go away.

At least, I hope....

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