DragonFly users List (threaded) for 2007-02
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DragonFly users List (threaded) for 2007-02
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Re: Plans for 1.8+ (2.0?)

From: Robert Luciani <rluciani@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: 19 Feb 2007 11:29:48 GMT

> Bill Hacker wrote:
>> Simon 'corecode' Schubert wrote:
>>> Rupert Pigott wrote:
>> But a brief scan of those that were 'free' brings up the question:
>> 'Just who is it that actually NEEDS this anyway?'
>> Bill Hacker
> Well Rupert Pigott gave some pretty convincing explanations of the
> usefulness of the concept. Personnally i see the problem from the other
> side, i am a physicist in a lab which has a cluster, the lab below us also
> has a cluster. Besides pissing contests, who has the biggest, i have hard
> time finding the real usefulness of this stuff. Basically the cluster is
> used by people as a collection of independent computers running independent
> computations. Probably few of these guys if any has any notion of
> concurrent programming. On the other hand i know an american physicist who
> has a cluster and does real clustered computations on it, in fact QCD
> computations on the lattice. This is the work of his life, he has learnt
> MPI and other hard stuff to exploit parallelism. People like that are so
> rare, and can get funding both for the harware and software, that this
> doesn't justify, in my opinion, lots of efforts from free software
> developers. Of course developers develop what they like, i have absolutely
> nothing against that. People see advantages in distributed filesystems.
> Now AFS is 30 years old, its rejuvenated version ARLA is 10 years old, who
> is really using that in the real world? Of course i don't know much but i
> don't know a single installation using it. This says a lot about the
> usefulness or the necessity of these concepts.

I think it's important to ask oneself these questions since it's a shame
to waste time on something that nobody can ever appreciate. On the other
hand, in Matt's and many other's vision clustered computing will perhaps
be an integral part of the future, just like many cored processors will be
in all personal computers of the future. Because of this, only now are
people scrambling and trying to figure out how they can squeeze more juice
out of their programs and operating systems in SMP environments. 

Jokingly: I think the notion of functional individual computers
helping each other out sounds a bit like neourons in a brain. The
technological singularity is coming, nothing can stop it!

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