Thomas Jay Peckish II on Life and Death

Skills are important. A surgeon screws up, a person dies. A programmer screws up, a process dies. The stakes are identical. Unless you think a process is worth less than a human life...

On the other hand, SW is penetrating everything these days, even the innards of airplanes, but most probably, all of that is done in a real programming language like ADA ...

More good food from Thomas Jay Peckish is on the catfish blog.

Part of the Bench in the Show Trial of the Gang of Four

And now to something completely different (ANTSCD):

Nicht übel, sprach der Dübel und verschwand in der Wand. Bis die Schraube kam und ihm die Unschuld nahm.

Man beachte die Geschlechter und damit die strukturelle Nähe zu mehr als einem Moment in 'Kill Bill - The Movie'.

plink,  only 1 comment,    praise or blame!

Carver Mead not quite believing in Unschärfe

Carver Mead, eminent physicist of VLSI- and analog-digital fame, does not quite believe in the commonly accepted uncertainty principle or at least he does not take for granted some of the heuristics derived off of Heisenberg's very important theorem.

Carver Mead, Moore professor of engineering and applied science

It may have gone under in my Brian Brain comment last week but that link, the story behind it and comment deserve better, because they're funny, radical and understandable even for the layman:

Mead makes some pretty interesting points about the sorry state of obscurantism that typifies our current interpretation of quantum mechanics.

Replace quantum mechanics with unsichtbare Weltanschauungsgrundlagen and you will recognize that Carver Mead and some other hard scientists, some of which get mentioned in the interview, are pretty radical guys. The times, they keep on changing. For the goode, mostly.

Brian "Laputan" Foote, by way of name coincidence has redetected a real gem here:

An Interview the American Spectator did with Carver Mead in 2002. American Spectator quite obviously does not offer the interview online anymore and is to busy to serve any content quite often anyway, so it looks like the reconstructed by Wayne Stewart version, done for Laputan Logic and linked above is the place to go.

Carver Mead, a lot younger

Even if you do not quite accept all the propositions of Mr. Mead they can serve as a very fine point of entry to rethink one or the other weltbild-dogma introduced in the last century.

(In the meantime we have also found a backup on

Here's an interview Technology Review died with Mr. Mead, more focused on the world computing technolgies.

TR: Is it the inherent difficulty of adapting digital technologies to our mostly analog human world? MEAD: Digital abstraction is a wonderful thing. It substitutes a very simple set of logic operations and, or, and not for an infinite set of physical things. Working in analog is much harder, because there are essentially countless ways for the thing to go wrong. You're working with the physics itself, rather than with some very small set of circuits that have been crafted to show digital behavior.

We really really do recommend reading both interviews. Many things get put into a slightly more real perspective than common by this Old Man Mead (born in '34). Straight stuff, straight story.

plink, 3 comments,    praise or blame!

The hardware myth

Habe heute auf der blendobox einen interessanten Artikel von Tom Fürstner über die Verwandlung von HW in SW gelesen: Soften your hardware, baby! Ich muss da ein weiteres Mal hinzufügen, daß es seit 1979 keine Hardware im strengen Sinn mehr gibt.

Seit Masatoshi Shima den Zilog Z8000 fertig hatte und Lynn Conway und Carver Mead ihr Lehrbuch über VLSI-Design samt SW vorgestellt hatten, werden CPUs und andere HW Logic mittels der Allgemeinheit eher unbekannter Sprachen wie z.B. VHDL gecodet und - ein bissi vereinfacht - einer Suite von Silicon-Compilern umgesetzt. Und dann kristallisiert die SW halt wieder im solid state.

Carver Mead, a lot younger

Dazu die Anekdote aus Chapter 14 von George Gilder's Microcosm: During 1979, Mead went to Zilog in Cupertino to visit with microprocessor pioneer Frederico Faggin. Walking down one of the halls, the two men encountered Shima. "Hey, Carver," he said, "I want a copy of your book." "Oh," said Mead bashfully, "it's really just for teaching students. It doesn't have anything to tell someone like you. It's not up to your standards." But Shima insisted. "I've just finished the Z8000," he said, "it's the last of the big mothers. No way we can ever design a chip like that again. Send me your book!"

Das war's mit der engineered HW. Zuviele Transistoren, zu viel Logik, zu viel alles. Nobody has been able to design or realise any significant HW anymore since 1980. Time to humble ourselves.

Dieser Text war einmal auf dem Science Museum: "California Institute of Technology professor Carver Mead and Xerox Corp. computer scientist Lynn Conway wrote a manual of chip design, "Introduction to VLSI Systems." Demystifying the planning of very large scale integrated (VLSI) systems, the text expanded the ranks of engineers capable of creating such chips. The authors had observed that computer architects seldom participated in the specification of the standard integrated circuits with which they worked. The authors intended "Introduction to VLSI Systems" to fill a gap in the literature and introduce all electrical engineering and computer science students to integrated system architecture."

plink, nix,    praise or blame!

last updated: 22.10.21, 01:16

Youre not logged in ... Login

Oktober 2021
Made with Antville
powered by
Helma Object Publisher
recently modified
Should be
pretty easy to guess from the context and image who HaFi and InTu are. Besides, thx for the hint to the open bold-tag.
by MaryW (22.10.21, 01:16)
Low hanging fruit
1 comment, lower geht es mathematisch schon aber psychosomatisch nicht.
by MaryW (15.10.21, 19:51)
da ist wohl ein <b> offen geblieben… und wer oder was sind HF und IT?
by tobi (25.09.21, 10:50)
manche nennen das
low hanging fruits, no?¿
by motzes (25.08.21, 20:33)
Freiwillige Feuerwehr
Wie ist das mit den freiwilligen und den professionellen Feuerwehren? Wenn 4 Häuser brennen und nur 2 Löschzüge da sind, dann gibt es doch eine....
by MaryW (22.07.21, 07:06)
That is a good argument and not to be underestimated. I was convinced a malevolent or rigid social environment (the others) posed the largest obstacle....
by MaryW (18.07.21, 08:54)
Und noch etwas
Die Schutzkleidung ist ein großes Problem. Sie verhindert allzu oft, dass mann mit anderen Säugetieren gut umgehen kann.
by StefanL (26.05.19, 07:09)
U get 1 big smile from me 4 that comment! And yes, i do not like embedded except it is good like this. It's like....
by StefanL (19.05.19, 16:30)
Just saying. #esc #strachevideo— Helene Voglreiter (@HeeLene) May 19, 2019 (Sorry, falls embedded unsocial media unerwünscht ist…)
by tobi (19.05.19, 10:57)
That's an adequate comment! Und das erste Zitat ein ganz besonders tolles Beispiel für den "Umschlag von Quantität in Qualität".
by MaryW (15.05.19, 19:57)
In the future everyone will be famous for fifteen people. – Momus You’ll always be a planet to me, Mr Bacchus. – Charon Fußnote! Find ick knorke.....
by tobi (15.05.19, 14:07)
I think I maybe know what you meant. It is the present we know best and the future we invent. And history is mostly used....
by StefanL (13.05.19, 00:55)
by StefanL (05.05.19, 21:15)
what about hindsight is 20/20?
by tobi (05.05.19, 14:00)
Ja echt.
Vielleicht schaffen wir es aber ja wieder einmal auf ein Konzert zusammen.
by StefanL (01.05.19, 05:55)
oh schade, verpasst…
by tobi (30.04.19, 09:07)
Als ethnische Gruppe bezeichnete Max Weber eine "Menschengruppe, welche auf Grund von Ähnlichkeiten des äußeren Habitus oder der Sitten oder beider ... einen subjektiven Glauben....
by StefanL (28.04.19, 07:28)
vielleicht aber
hat er auch während des Moderierens seinen Text sozusagen live in die Wikipedia kopiert? (leider wird diese theorie durch überprüfung der datenlage nicht unbedingt erhärtet.)
by chris (30.03.19, 09:08)
by misc (28.03.19, 09:28)
Na, heute wird er nicht weinen, sondern die Korken knallen lassen. Aber bald wird er wieder weinen, nämlich wenn er mit Verspätung merkt, dass der....
by ArchibaldL (27.03.19, 06:15)

RSS Feed