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So what’s wrong with 1975 programming?

Notes from the Architect picks up Varnish as his application example to highlight that things have changed since then. You can extrapolate from his examples to, say, Python or Java versus BASIC or C. I have spent many years working on the FreeBSD kernel, and only rarely did I venture into userland programming, but when […]

Tech directions: IkaScope

They call it the IkaScope. “Robust and reliable analog front end, Measuring signals with IkaScope is quick, easy and intuitive. Sampling rate 200 MSPS; Bandwidth 25 MHz; Memory 4000 pts; Input range ± 40V; Coupling AC / DC; Refresh rate 200 FPS*.” At this time, it’s a gleam in the designer’s eye so who knows […]

1700’s tech: A piano story

It may not have been crafting nanocircuits on silicon but innovation and craftsmanship have legs in history. Here’s a good story of that: What Does the World Oldest Surviving Piano Sound Like?: Watch Pianist Give a Performance on a 1720 Cristofori Piano. Imagine your favorite works for the piano—the delicate and haunting, the thundering and […]

Seek and ye shall find – that it’s a harder journey than you ever imagined.

Luboš Motl takes off on Nautilus’ disillusioned ex-physicist. “Bob Henderson wrote an autobiography for Nautil.Us” and that provided the ammunition for a rant on Life’s Journey that any college freshman with ambition should read carefully. This is a sketch of the “path towards the deep laws of the Universe” that I already had in mind […]

Tools and how they corrupt the mind. Programming languages, thinking, and doing

Keep in mind that it is the craftsman and not the tools that solve problems and create solutions and that tools are the product of craftsman, too. Tools not only enable and facilitate, they also communicate. They are one craftsman sharing ideas with another. How you can do something influences how you think about doing […]

Federico Faggin on his early work

A YouTube presentation: Federico Faggin at UC Berkeley 2-19-2014 “Microelectronics & Microprocessors: The Early Years” (1:21) This is one of those guys at the very top of the ‘been there, built it’ pyramid telling his story. He was the right engineer in the right place at the right time and the result was the modern microcomputer […]

Linux reinstalled: samples from 1993 – 2003

How Linux got to be Linux: Test driving 1993-2003 distros — “Enjoy a trip down Linux memory lane as we take early distros for a spin.” Posted 20 Dec 2016 Seth Kenlon. By the early 2000s, it’s clear that Linux has well and truly hit its stride. The desktop is more polished than ever, the […]

Matzobrei

There have been a few essays on the meaning of Christmas with ideas to consider. Here’s one: Incomprehensible Word, Uncomprehending World: The Puzzle of Christmas by N.T. Wright. A Jewish word spoken to an uncomprehending world; a child’s word spoken to uncomprehending adults; a word for a food of which others were unaware –  … […]

Linux growth in 2016 – developer’s numbers

Phoronix picks up on the latest Linux kernal release and takes a look at how much it has changed in 2016. Linux 4.10-rc1 Gained 488k Lines, Kernel Up 1.9+ Million Lines For 2016. For those wondering how much weight the kernel gained in 2016, comparing the 4.10-rc1 kernel to 4.4-rc8 (released on 3 January 2016, […]

History of the 8008 (caution: pictures of a naked cpu!)

“As you can see, the 1970s were a time of large changes in semiconductor chip technology. The 4004 and 8008 were created when the technological capability intersected with the right market.” Ken Shirriff shows how he got Die photos and analysis of the revolutionary 8008 microprocessor, 45 years old. This chip, Intel’s first 8-bit microprocessor, […]