Hardware Woes: Light at the End of the Tunnel

If you’ve been following my “Offtopic” or “Hawaii” topics, you’ve been hearing me lament what it’s been like assembling a non-standard desktop machine (dual processors, huge hard drives, All-in-Wonder 800XT) by mail order when you live 3,000 miles from the mainland. Well, aside from cleaning up the boxes everywhere and re-installing all my software, I’ve got a fast multiprocessor machine up and running (as you might have guessed from my /openMp /clr post below).

On the other hand, it is loud. Two Zalman CPU fans, 1 fan on the graphics board, power-supply fan, and 5 case fans. And I swear to god, it’s making my office uncomfortably hot. I live in the tropics, and this thing’s throwing out so many BTUs that it’s outperforming the sun. I didn’t go with water cooling, because…well…it’s expensive and it scares me.

Ruby: Rails or the Language?

My colleague Andrew Binstock, who’s always been too busy making money to blog, disagrees with me that Ruby-the-language is crossing the chasm. He think that Rails is great, but is not enamored of Ruby-the-language. I, on the other hand, continue to be skeptical about Rails (has it changed the dialogue about how frameworks should be? Yes. But it’s a long way from displacing ASP.NET or even PHP).

Firefox hijacks Url opening from IE7 (!?!?!?!)

Firefox 1.5.06 is my default browser. It’s acting a little strangely with some of the admin facilities on this site, though, so I just opened IE (7, beta 3). OK, but now I discover that when I type a URI into the IE addressbar, a new tab opens in Firefox and loads the page! I mean, there’s default and then there’s default.

/clr /openMp

/clr /openMp

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

2:34 PM

I’ve been working with C++/CLI and OpenMP lately. OpenMP is a multiprocessing facility for C++ and FORTRAN that is, as such things go, dead simple to use (this is one of those "power to shoot yourself in the foot" things). One line of code (#pragma omp parallel for) changed my CPU utilization from:


Now that’s what I’m talking about! Get those cores cooking!


Anyhow, OpenMP and C++/CLI are a sweet match: C++/CLI makes GUIs and strings and such .NET-easy and OpenMP unleashes the processors. Look for an upcoming article on DevX.


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