atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,
atomic_fungus
atomic_fungus

#3247: Prediction: it closes in a year, maybe two.

"Straight-friendly" gay hotel opens in NYC.

Either THE OUT NYC will close, or it will change into something else.

Reason: straights won't go there. Oh, a few will, from the richest sectors of the hardcore pro-perversion crowd (ie folks who think sex is the do-all-be-all of the human condition, and the freakier it is the better) but it's going to be a sex club with doors. It's why the YMCA fell into such disrepute after the 1960s. The song by the Village People was an advertisement: "this is where you can go for lots of unprotected and anonymous gay sex!" But the average run-of-the-mill straight person? He'll stay away.

* * *

Ten reasons there'll be unprecedented Democrat vote fraud this November. Remember, Democrats! Vote Early, Vote Often! BTW, Republican voting is held on Wednesday this year....

*rolleyes*

* * *

Big surprise: Obama is lying about contraception.

Well, it's all the Democrats have. It's why they're desperately funneling all this effort into convincing the public that the GOP wants to ban contraceptives. They cannot win on Barack Hussein's record; therefore they must change the subject to something they can win on.

* * *

They really can't win on Obama's economic record. Obamanomics is an abejct failure. Even with the epic number-fudging that the feds are doing to make things look better than they are, even accepting those numbers as factual (which they're not!) we're still in the worst recession/recovery/depression/whatev we've seen in the past century.

* * *

Man-made global warming is resulting in the recovery of arctic sea ice to a 7-year high.

There have been plenty of times in recent history (like the last two centuries) that the arctic sea was relatively free of ice. Each time, the ice came back. It's true this time as well; the arctic ice pack was "vanishing" and we were treated to Al Gore's (faked) picture of a polar bear on a melting ice floe as evidence that YOUR SUV IS RUINING THE WORLD...

I'm sure that the climatologists are shocked and dismayed that yet another dire prediction of theirs has been trumped by an ugly reality.

* * *

I talked about this in a prior Fungus.

#1364: Ten years from now this will be "entry level".

Short form: guys at MIT are simulating a microprocessor with 100 (or more) computing cores.

Microprocessors have gone multi-core because we've run into a snag with the progression of Moore's Law. Intel's Pentium 4 line of processors was originally meant to scale up to about 10 GHz over the course of a few years; but Intel found out that they simply could not run a microprocessor at anything approaching that speed.

You can build a microprocessor to run at 10 GHz. It'd be nothing like a P4, though, and it would not exactly be a commercially viable product. It would be fantastically expensive, for one thing, and I'd wager you'd have to cool it with liquid nitrogen.

In fact, Intel discovered that they could make a P4 run a bit north of 3 GHz before it simply stopped working for one reason or another; beyond that limit, though, reliability became a serious problem. (See below, "economy of scale".)

...so the answer was to start doing multi-core processors. Running two computing cores at 3 GHz is not as good as one computing core at 6 GHz, but it's almost as good and a lot easier to accomplish. Running four cores at 3 GHz is faster than a single core at 10 GHz.

It's not a straight-on doubling of computing power, of course. The Laws of Thermodynamics apply and cannot be avoided; four cores at 3 GHz can't execute twelve billion instructions as fast as one core at 12 GHz could. But it lets you increase the computing power of a single IC without having to raise the clock speed over the speed limit we've come up against, which is about 4 GHz (give or take 5-10%) and it keeps microprocessor prices from heading into low earth orbit.

The problem is, when you start running multiple cores on a single die, it causes other problems that have to be resolved. Since the statistical universe you have to work in is pretty simple, you can simulate it with a high degree of confidence in the results...and that's what these guys at MIT are doing: running a computer simulation of a computer to see what problems crop up.

This is essentially a new wrinkle on a technique the manufacturers have been doing for a long time. MIT's simulator is merely more accurate.

Still, it's damned cool to know that this kind of thing is being worked on.

* * *

"Economy of scale":

You realize, don't you, that there are several billion transistors in your computer and every one of them has to work right every time for your computer to be usable?

Further, when someone makes a microprocessor, they make about a dozen on a single piece of silicon and then split out the individual processors for packaging. If your processor has 5 billion transistors in it, the silicon wafer has perhaps 60 billion transistors on it...and while a certain percentage of them will always turn out to be bad, in order for the thing to make any money at a decent price point that percentage has to be vanishingly small.

If I had more energy, I would dig deeper into the wonder that is semiconductor manufacture; but I think I've made enough of the point.

* * *

Last night I was falling asleep playing WoW, and finally I gave up and listened to some music.

I haven't done that for quite a while: put on music, sit in my rocking chair in the dark, and just listen. It was amazingly relaxing. I was also listening to the first SD card I filled with music after getting the MP3 player, rather than one I normally listen to. It has a slightly different mix of ambient on it than #2 does, and I haven't heard some of those tunes for quite a while. It was kind of like listening to "Musical Starstreams" again--except that it was only songs I like--which was nice.

* * *

I put the phone on "do not disturb" before going to bed, and looking at the Caller ID thingy this morning I see that I avoided being awakened three times today. I think I may have to make a habit of doing that....

* * *

Put a big duct-tape "Y" on the old trash barrel. I'd stuffed into it the sticks and twigs from the branch that fell the other day; with the "Y" on it, it was appropriately marked (more or less) as "yard waste". A few branches were left in it; I have no idea why, as they weren't jammed or stuck in it or anything. Oh well. They won't hurt anything in there and can go out the next time I have that much yard waste.

When I went down to bring up the trash cans, I noticed that it was pleasantly warm. "Hey, maybe I ought to ride the motorcycle! Ehh...not sure I want to, though."

When I saw the weather report, I was glad I hadn't immediately geared up and gone for a ride: there was heavy weather on the way...and in fact about 20 minutes after that I heard thunder outside.

*shrug* Whatev.
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