Ropes I Know

June 28, 2008

“Effective Concurrency” by Herb Sutter

Filed under: Computer, Concurrency — Tags: , , — Yeti @ 12:58

I’m a regular reader of Sutter’s Mill (as you can guess from my blogroll).

Herb Sutter is generally considered a leading authority on software development. Here you can read a bit about him, he’s involved in just about everything you would consider cutting edge in software development. I strongly recommend following the link to the article “The Free Lunch is Over” – but you could just as well follow it from here directly. 🙂

Just have a look around his blog, he’s got many, many, very interesting things to say. And he’s got a big archive as well.

Since I’m particularly interested in high performance and real-time computing, I especially enjoy his ongoing coloumn at Dr. Dobb’s Journal about “Efficient Concurrency”. His publications are real gems of information, so I thought I’ld share them with possible readers of my still young and meager blog.

His latest post is on concurrency-friendly data structures. His writings generally touch things you wouldn’t suppose they could have such a large impact on efficiency. In his post you’ll find an excerpt of the latest journal-article, plus links to all the ones published at DDJ. This is definitely recommended reading for anyone seriously into software development who wants to benefit from the ever-increasing number of cores in modern CPUs despite the stagnating increase in clock frequency and overall efficiency of single cores.

I have started to build a page where I want to accumulate interesting facts, thoughts, links and perhaps common misconceptions, regarding software development in modern hardware (and network) environments. Things I have learned the hard way (meaning: by myself, while developing software that had to have higher performance than at the time was considered normal), things I have learned from others, even things that are so fundamental that they haven’t lost significance even if they’re some 30 years old. I’ll just say “The Art of Computer Programming” and “Don E. Knuth” at the moment, more on this is to come on the page(s) I’m setting up.

Perhaps you might want to check back from time to time, because I will announce here if and when I update these pages.

Oh, and remember to check Herb’s blog!

June 14, 2008

The Root of All Evil?

Filed under: Atheism, Religion — Tags: , , , , — Yeti @ 22:13

Part 1, The God Delusion:

The Root of All Evil? is a television documentary, written and presented by Richard Dawkins, in which he argues that the world would be better off without religion. The documentary was first broadcast in January 2006, in the form of two 45-minute episodes (excluding advertisement breaks), on Channel 4 in the UK. Dawkins has said that the title “The Root of All Evil?” was not his preferred choice, but that Channel 4 had insisted on it to create controversy.[1] His sole concession from the producers on the title was the addition of the question mark. Dawkins has stated that the notion of anything being the root of all evil is ridiculous.[2] Dawkins’s book The God Delusion, released in September 2006, goes on to examine the topics raised in the documentary in greater detail. The God Delusion explores the unproven beliefs that are treated as factual by many religions and the extremes to which some followers have taken them. Dawkins opens the programme by describing the “would-be murderers . . . who want to kill you and me, and themselves, because they’re motivated by what they think is the highest ideal.” Dawkins argues that “the process of non-thinking called faith” is not a way of understanding the world, but instead stands in fundamental opposition to modern science and the scientific method, and is divisive and dangerous.

Part 2, The Virus of Faith:

In The Virus of Faith, Dawkins opines that the moral framework of religions is warped, and argues against the religious indoctrination of children. The title of this episode comes from The Selfish Gene, in which Dawkins discussed the concept of memes. The Root of All Evil? is a television documentary, written and presented by Richard Dawkins, in which he argues that the world would be better off without religion. The documentary was first broadcast in January 2006, in the form of two 45-minute episodes (excluding advertisement breaks), on Channel 4 in the UK.

For the moment, I just want to say that I mostly – if not totally – agree with Dawkins.

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