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January 06, 2012
Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
Hi,

I just saw a follow up article from Herb Sutter about
the future of parallel computing.

http://herbsutter.com/welcome-to-the-jungle/

Very interesting read. Excuse me if someone has already
posted it.

--
Paulo
January 07, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
"Paulo Pinto" <pjmlp@progtools.org> wrote in message 
news:je7vvh$253f$1@digitalmars.com...
> Hi,
>
> I just saw a follow up article from Herb Sutter about
> the future of parallel computing.
>
> http://herbsutter.com/welcome-to-the-jungle/
>
> Very interesting read. Excuse me if someone has already
> posted it.
>

It is interesting...But I have to say: The *one* thing that really bugs me 
about it is that it seems to be written under the assumption that the 
highest-end hardware that's *sitting around on store shelves* is the only 
hardware that's relevant, or even exists. It makes the whole thing feel 
uncomfortably ivory-tower when reading through it. Even a simple 
*acknowledgment* of the distinction would have made a huge difference. But 
the way it's written, it makes him sound like (and for all I know, he may 
very well not be like this at all), but it makes him sound like "CliffyB", 
or Tim Sweeny, or some other such graphics-whore, "in bed with MS, NVidia 
and ATI" jackass over at Epic (Epic used to actually be respectable back in 
the "MegaGames" days...).
January 07, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
Am 07.01.2012 08:08, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
> "Paulo Pinto"<pjmlp@progtools.org>  wrote in message
> news:je7vvh$253f$1@digitalmars.com...
>> Hi,
>>
>> I just saw a follow up article from Herb Sutter about
>> the future of parallel computing.
>>
>> http://herbsutter.com/welcome-to-the-jungle/
>>
>> Very interesting read. Excuse me if someone has already
>> posted it.
>>
>
> It is interesting...But I have to say: The *one* thing that really bugs me
> about it is that it seems to be written under the assumption that the
> highest-end hardware that's *sitting around on store shelves* is the only
> hardware that's relevant, or even exists. It makes the whole thing feel
> uncomfortably ivory-tower when reading through it. Even a simple
> *acknowledgment* of the distinction would have made a huge difference. But
> the way it's written, it makes him sound like (and for all I know, he may
> very well not be like this at all), but it makes him sound like "CliffyB",
> or Tim Sweeny, or some other such graphics-whore, "in bed with MS, NVidia
> and ATI" jackass over at Epic (Epic used to actually be respectable back in
> the "MegaGames" days...).
>
>
>

But he is in a way right.

Even the small embedded systems are slowly becoming multicore. The most 
recent ARM processors are now multicore.

As an example of a multicore PIC, see the Parallax Propeller processor,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallax_Propeller.


Sure there will still be lots of scenarios where this won't be the case,
like there are still 8 bit PIC processors being deployed in Assembly, 
but they are niche products. The vast majority of the developers will 
have the reality he describes.

--
Paulo
January 07, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
"Paulo Pinto" <pjmlp@progtools.org> wrote in message 
news:je92bp$t68$1@digitalmars.com...
>
> But he is in a way right.
>
> Even the small embedded systems are slowly becoming multicore. The most 
> recent ARM processors are now multicore.
>

Yes, because after all, who *doesn't* need to decode genomes on their 
telephone? ;)

> As an example of a multicore PIC, see the Parallax Propeller processor,
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallax_Propeller.
>

Warning to all: The following two paragraphs may sound very strange 
considering they're coming from me...

The Propeller's awesome. Brilliant little chip. Not exactly a big fan of 
SPIN or the IDE, though (Personally, I would just as soon have spared the 
silicon used to embed that SPIN interpreter into the chip, or maybe 
repurposed it somehow). And the video output capabilities could be a little 
bit better. But those niggles aside, I admit, I'm a big fan of the 
Propeller. And the whole "multi-core microcontroller", believe it or not, is 
probably the main reason why. It's a cheap little thing and in terms of 
power, I'd estimate it to be...as if you had a device somewhere between an 
NES or SNES, but made the A/V circuitry almost entirely re-programmable.

I was actually lucky enough to have the opportunity to play with a Propeller 
on an early revision of the Hydra board ( www.xgamestation.com ) before 
either of their official releases. Still have the board right here on my 
desk, too:  https://www.semitwist.com/download/img/Hydra-v0.1.jpg  Although 
as you can see it's gathered...ummm...more than a little bit of dust since 
I've been drowning in the web world for so long now :/  (Actually, I'm kind 
of embarrassed by all the dust on it...I really should have covered it long 
ago...) I wrote the sound and eeprom drivers that come with the Hydra, and 
three of the demos: Hydra Rally, Deep Cavern 3D, and Piano Demo. (They're 
shown in a random rotation on the xgamestation homepage, reload the page a 
few times to see them all). It was a lot of exhausting work, but I had an 
absolute blast developing them. I love working with systems where you have 
full control and understanding over every single byte - especially when it's 
to the end of making games. Unfortunately I never really get the chance for 
such things anymore.


>
> Sure there will still be lots of scenarios where this won't be the case,
> like there are still 8 bit PIC processors being deployed in Assembly, but 
> they are niche products. The vast majority of the developers will have the 
> reality he describes.
>
> --
> Paulo
January 07, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
Hi,

so you are also following Andre's attemps to revive the
old homebrew developer feeling. :)

I also miss those days. I grew up with the ZX Spectrum,
doing some BASIC and Z80 stuff, then most of my friends
moved up to the Amiga 500 and I eventually got a PC,
since my dad was the opinion the PC would be the future.

Anyway, I had lots of fun doing x86 assembly programming
with some Turbo Pascal and eventually C. Then quite a few
languages after that.

Nowadays I develop business software mostly in JVM and .NET
languages, running in clustered environments. With development
teams scattered around the globe.

Doing low level programming and graphics related stuff is
now only a hobby, when real life permits to do so. Until the
day I manage to change area.

Wow, now I am a bit nostaligic

--
Paulo


Am 07.01.2012 11:19, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
>
> Warning to all: The following two paragraphs may sound very strange
> considering they're coming from me...
>
> The Propeller's awesome. Brilliant little chip. Not exactly a big fan of
> SPIN or the IDE, though (Personally, I would just as soon have spared the
> silicon used to embed that SPIN interpreter into the chip, or maybe
> repurposed it somehow). And the video output capabilities could be a little
> bit better. But those niggles aside, I admit, I'm a big fan of the
> Propeller. And the whole "multi-core microcontroller", believe it or not, is
> probably the main reason why. It's a cheap little thing and in terms of
> power, I'd estimate it to be...as if you had a device somewhere between an
> NES or SNES, but made the A/V circuitry almost entirely re-programmable.
>
> I was actually lucky enough to have the opportunity to play with a Propeller
> on an early revision of the Hydra board ( www.xgamestation.com ) before
> either of their official releases. Still have the board right here on my
> desk, too:  https://www.semitwist.com/download/img/Hydra-v0.1.jpg  Although
> as you can see it's gathered...ummm...more than a little bit of dust since
> I've been drowning in the web world for so long now :/  (Actually, I'm kind
> of embarrassed by all the dust on it...I really should have covered it long
> ago...) I wrote the sound and eeprom drivers that come with the Hydra, and
> three of the demos: Hydra Rally, Deep Cavern 3D, and Piano Demo. (They're
> shown in a random rotation on the xgamestation homepage, reload the page a
> few times to see them all). It was a lot of exhausting work, but I had an
> absolute blast developing them. I love working with systems where you have
> full control and understanding over every single byte - especially when it's
> to the end of making games. Unfortunately I never really get the chance for
> such things anymore.
January 07, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
On 01/06/2012 11:08 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
> "Paulo Pinto"<pjmlp@progtools.org>  wrote in message
> news:je7vvh$253f$1@digitalmars.com...
>> >  Hi,
>> >
>> >  I just saw a follow up article from Herb Sutter about
>> >  the future of parallel computing.
>> >
>> >  http://herbsutter.com/welcome-to-the-jungle/
>> >
>> >  Very interesting read. Excuse me if someone has already
>> >  posted it.
>> >
> It is interesting...But I have to say: The*one*  thing that really bugs me
> about it is that it seems to be written under the assumption that the
> highest-end hardware that's*sitting around on store shelves*  is the only
> hardware that's relevant, or even exists.

I think the thought is that *in the long run* the only chips that will 
hang around fall into one of two sets: The most powerful chips available 
and the most power efficient chips available. When you are buying new, 
why would you get anything else? In the short term there will be older 
stuff around but firstly, "nobody" buys used and secondly it's going to 
get replaced at some point (if for no other reason but getting damaged 
by handling).

As a second rebuttal, I think the article is directed squarely at the 
"My program needs to run faster (lets throw hardware at it)!" crowd.
January 07, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
"Paulo Pinto" <pjmlp@progtools.org> wrote in message 
news:je9e3t$1g3l$1@digitalmars.com...
> Hi,
>
> so you are also following Andre's attemps to revive the
> old homebrew developer feeling. :)
>

Yea, I grew up on that sort of thing. And I'd been working with Andre' 
(LaMothe, of course) since well before he started doing hardware kits. His 
old DOS-based game dev books are what moved me from various forms of BASIC 
into finally really grokking things like C, pointers and low-level 
programming (which I had only "kind of" understood before). Then I just 
happened to end up in contact with him through a mutual aquaintence (via AOL 
1.x ;) heh, yea, way back then). Andre' was starting up a budget-game 
publishing company and was looking for a breakout clone, which I happened to 
already be working on. So there was that, and then he started some gamedev 
forums that I was a regular on for years. Then Hasbro Interactive fucked 
everything up with unsubstantiated litigation and typical corporate "drown 
in legal fees" tactics, and then he got into doing hardware kits like he's 
doing now.

IMO, Indie gamedev is really the only way to go if you want to make games. 
All the way until college I was convinced I wanted to work for a major game 
company. Then I started learning more about the nature of the industry at 
the time (around 2000-2001), and that was also the point where the industry 
itself was starting its slow descent into becoming into the 
Hollywood-wannabe cesspool it mostly is today. ("Fuck actual gaming, we're 
gonna be cinematic storytellers!" Too many Pixar rejects in the industry 
now, I guess...Not to mention all the "packaged-goods" managers...)

> I also miss those days. I grew up with the ZX Spectrum,
> doing some BASIC and Z80 stuff, then most of my friends
> moved up to the Amiga 500 and I eventually got a PC,
> since my dad was the opinion the PC would be the future.
>

For me, it was Apple IIc and ApplesoftBASIC (I'm normally critical of apple 
products, especially after having spent a year or so with OSX, but the Apple 
II line is the one major exception for me. I guess you could say Woz was the 
*real* Apple for me). Plus a small amount of Logo and machine code on the 
machine. Then I got a [Packard Bell, remember them?] 486DX2 and moved to 
QBASIC, had an enormous amount of fun with that. (IIRC, Amiga was pretty 
much out of the picture by then, and I hadn't even heard of it. Sometimes 
now I feel like I really missed out on it.)

Tinkered a bit with C/C++, but didn't quite "get it". Then did VB 3 (It came 
on a bunch of floppies and was for Win3 :) ). Then I found Andre's DOS books 
(this was still *just* before DirectX, or at least around the time of what 
was then called the "Game SDK"). Was into that for years, and somehow 
managed to get sucked into web dev, and these days all my free time goes to 
D-related projects (mostly things that will directly or indirectly make my 
webdev work slightly less painful).

> Anyway, I had lots of fun doing x86 assembly programming
> with some Turbo Pascal and eventually C. Then quite a few
> languages after that.
>
> Nowadays I develop business software mostly in JVM and .NET
> languages, running in clustered environments. With development
> teams scattered around the globe.
>
> Doing low level programming and graphics related stuff is
> now only a hobby, when real life permits to do so. Until the
> day I manage to change area.
>
> Wow, now I am a bit nostaligic
>
January 08, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
On Sat, Jan 7, 2012 at 12:29 PM, Nick Sabalausky <a@a.a> wrote:

> "Paulo Pinto" <pjmlp@progtools.org> wrote in message
> news:je9e3t$1g3l$1@digitalmars.com...
> > Hi,
> >
> > so you are also following Andre's attemps to revive the
> > old homebrew developer feeling. :)
> >
>
> Yea, I grew up on that sort of thing. And I'd been working with Andre'
> (LaMothe, of course) since well before he started doing hardware kits. His
> old DOS-based game dev books are what moved me from various forms of BASIC
> into finally really grokking things like C, pointers and low-level
> programming (which I had only "kind of" understood before). Then I just
> happened to end up in contact with him through a mutual aquaintence (via
> AOL
> 1.x ;) heh, yea, way back then). Andre' was starting up a budget-game
> publishing company and was looking for a breakout clone, which I happened
> to
> already be working on. So there was that, and then he started some gamedev
> forums that I was a regular on for years. Then Hasbro Interactive fucked
> everything up with unsubstantiated litigation and typical corporate "drown
> in legal fees" tactics, and then he got into doing hardware kits like he's
> doing now.
>

I was a regular on there too.  Small world.

>
> IMO, Indie gamedev is really the only way to go if you want to make games.
> All the way until college I was convinced I wanted to work for a major game
> company. Then I started learning more about the nature of the industry at
> the time (around 2000-2001), and that was also the point where the industry
> itself was starting its slow descent into becoming into the
> Hollywood-wannabe cesspool it mostly is today. ("Fuck actual gaming, we're
> gonna be cinematic storytellers!" Too many Pixar rejects in the industry
> now, I guess...Not to mention all the "packaged-goods" managers...)
>
> > I also miss those days. I grew up with the ZX Spectrum,
> > doing some BASIC and Z80 stuff, then most of my friends
> > moved up to the Amiga 500 and I eventually got a PC,
> > since my dad was the opinion the PC would be the future.
> >
>
> For me, it was Apple IIc and ApplesoftBASIC (I'm normally critical of apple
> products, especially after having spent a year or so with OSX, but the
> Apple
> II line is the one major exception for me. I guess you could say Woz was
> the
> *real* Apple for me). Plus a small amount of Logo and machine code on the
> machine. Then I got a [Packard Bell, remember them?] 486DX2 and moved to
> QBASIC, had an enormous amount of fun with that. (IIRC, Amiga was pretty
> much out of the picture by then, and I hadn't even heard of it. Sometimes
> now I feel like I really missed out on it.)
>
> Tinkered a bit with C/C++, but didn't quite "get it". Then did VB 3 (It
> came
> on a bunch of floppies and was for Win3 :) ). Then I found Andre's DOS
> books
> (this was still *just* before DirectX, or at least around the time of what
> was then called the "Game SDK"). Was into that for years, and somehow
> managed to get sucked into web dev, and these days all my free time goes to
> D-related projects (mostly things that will directly or indirectly make my
> webdev work slightly less painful).
>
> > Anyway, I had lots of fun doing x86 assembly programming
> > with some Turbo Pascal and eventually C. Then quite a few
> > languages after that.
> >
> > Nowadays I develop business software mostly in JVM and .NET
> > languages, running in clustered environments. With development
> > teams scattered around the globe.
> >
> > Doing low level programming and graphics related stuff is
> > now only a hobby, when real life permits to do so. Until the
> > day I manage to change area.
> >
> > Wow, now I am a bit nostaligic
> >
>
>
>
Regards,
Brad Anderson
January 08, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallelcomputing)
"Brad Anderson" <eco@gnuk.net> wrote in message 
news:mailman.185.1325982241.16222.digitalmars-d@puremagic.com...
> On Sat, Jan 7, 2012 at 12:29 PM, Nick Sabalausky <a@a.a> wrote:
>
>> "Paulo Pinto" <pjmlp@progtools.org> wrote in message
>> news:je9e3t$1g3l$1@digitalmars.com...
>> > Hi,
>> >
>> > so you are also following Andre's attemps to revive the
>> > old homebrew developer feeling. :)
>> >
>>
>> Yea, I grew up on that sort of thing. And I'd been working with Andre'
>> (LaMothe, of course) since well before he started doing hardware kits. 
>> His
>> old DOS-based game dev books are what moved me from various forms of 
>> BASIC
>> into finally really grokking things like C, pointers and low-level
>> programming (which I had only "kind of" understood before). Then I just
>> happened to end up in contact with him through a mutual aquaintence (via
>> AOL
>> 1.x ;) heh, yea, way back then). Andre' was starting up a budget-game
>> publishing company and was looking for a breakout clone, which I happened
>> to
>> already be working on. So there was that, and then he started some 
>> gamedev
>> forums that I was a regular on for years. Then Hasbro Interactive fucked
>> everything up with unsubstantiated litigation and typical corporate 
>> "drown
>> in legal fees" tactics, and then he got into doing hardware kits like 
>> he's
>> doing now.
>>
>
> I was a regular on there too.  Small world.
>

Heh, cool. I'm "Abscissa" over there (although I haven't posted or even 
lurked much in years). I was one of the two-digit user numbers :)
January 08, 2012
Re: Welcome to the Jungle (article about the future of parallel computing)
On 1/8/2012 9:23 AM, Brad Anderson wrote:
> On Sat, Jan 7, 2012 at 12:29 PM, Nick Sabalausky <a@a.a> wrote:
>
>     "Paulo Pinto" <pjmlp@progtools.org <mailto:pjmlp@progtools.org>>
>     wrote in message
>     news:je9e3t$1g3l$1@digitalmars.com...
>      > Hi,
>      >
>      > so you are also following Andre's attemps to revive the
>      > old homebrew developer feeling. :)
>      >
>
>     Yea, I grew up on that sort of thing. And I'd been working with Andre'
>     (LaMothe, of course) since well before he started doing hardware
>     kits. His
>     old DOS-based game dev books are what moved me from various forms of
>     BASIC
>     into finally really grokking things like C, pointers and low-level
>     programming (which I had only "kind of" understood before). Then I just
>     happened to end up in contact with him through a mutual aquaintence
>     (via AOL
>     1.x ;) heh, yea, way back then). Andre' was starting up a budget-game
>     publishing company and was looking for a breakout clone, which I
>     happened to
>     already be working on. So there was that, and then he started some
>     gamedev
>     forums that I was a regular on for years. Then Hasbro Interactive fucked
>     everything up with unsubstantiated litigation and typical corporate
>     "drown
>     in legal fees" tactics, and then he got into doing hardware kits
>     like he's
>     doing now.
>
>
> I was a regular on there too.  Small world.
>

I was a regular lurker for a while. Until around the time of the Hasbro 
suit. When I saw 'Abscissa' posting over at the DSource forums, and 
later connected it with Nick, I thought it likely to be the same 
Abscissa from the XtremeGames boards. That was a long time ago.
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