[Beowulf] Stroustrup regarding multicore

Vincent Diepeveen diep at xs4all.nl
Wed Aug 27 16:04:10 EDT 2008


Jim,

I would go even further. It is definately true that from physics some  
scientists learn programming really well, at the best level i'd say.
That's not their job however. From hardware engineering sometimes  
even better low level programmers get on the scene.

The point being that a great low level programmers can do many low  
level jobs, whereas 99% from the PHD's have no clue where to
even start. Those great low level coders are without exception by  
definition of what IQ is, high IQ persons (let's just consider
technical IQ here), not seldom 180+.

Some definitions of what a high technical IQ is as it was not so long  
ago written on the wiki pages,
is managing to distinguish tiny details and from those details  
managing to understand everything from fundamental
conceptual level (this is my own words, the social dudes have a few  
thousand more pages on this most likely).

So from that great low level coder you know he has all that.

180+ is more than what most PHD's have. Additionally most are busy at  
conceptual level more than
implementing tiny details into code at cycle level.

Therefore it is easy to deduce from the above lemma's that it is more  
likely that the coder can understand
the theories the scientist wants to implement, than that the  
scientist will be able to within 10 years implement
the code real low level, provided he has the TIME to learn  
programming that well.

Vincent

On Aug 27, 2008, at 6:42 PM, Lux, James P wrote:

>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Steve Herborn [mailto:herborn at usna.edu]
> Sent: Wednesday, August 27, 2008 9:33 AM
> To: 'Vincent Diepeveen'; 'Tim Cutts'
> Cc: Beowulf at beowulf.org; Lux, James P
> Subject: RE: [Beowulf] Stroustrup regarding multicore
>
> Perhaps his judgment isn't "universally" objective (not influenced by
> personal feelings, interpretations, or prejudice; based on facts),  
> but could
> very well could be objective (and his version of reality) in his  
> little part
> of the world.  Being at a University I've run across more of what  
> he said
> then your particular comments on the subject.
>
> However, that being said I would think that it is usually easier to  
> teach a
> Scientist to code, then a coder the PhD level of the science.
>
>
> ----
>
>
> I would say that you shouldn't be teaching the Scientist to code.  
> You should be teaching them to write good requirements documents &  
> test cases that someone who is skilled at coding can use.  That  
> way, you can leverage the years of tuning experience and down and  
> dirty knowledge of the computational platform.  Giving the  
> Scientist background information so that they can effectively ask  
> for things is another story (i.e. make them an intelligent consumer).
>
> And, even if the Scientist does wind up coding, they'll produce  
> better code if they didn't just do it in a ad-hoc "let's go in and  
> modify what 30 years of grad students have done and see what  
> happens".. Not that you're not going to wind up modifying the 30  
> years of heritage, but at least, you'll have a clearer picture of  
> what, exactly, you're trying to accomplish and how you'll know that  
> you got there. That's always nice when you have to justify how you  
> spent all that money.
>
> {This comment is given, of course, wearing my software development  
> manager hat.  I reserve the right to hack up my own stuff, at my  
> own risk, of course.}
>
> Jim Lux
>
>
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