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3:00 PM
@HDE226868 It really is! My girlfriend, who works as an R&D chemist, has benefited more from her teaching degree than her chemistry degree in her job. Explaining things to sales and marketing in a language they understand prevents them from promising customers things that aren't physically possible.
 
"You take a large gas giant, and put a small black hole in the middle. Because of the gravitational forces pulling matter in and releasing a lot of energy, the gas giant will look a lot like a star, even though there is no fusion happening."
 
@AndyD273 That summary would go a long way towards helping with comprehension.
 
@sphennings Oh, absolutely. I imagine that engineers, programmers and some scientists have to deal with that a lot.
@AndyD273 Would you mind if I use a variant of that?
 
@HDE226868 As a programmer I can confirm your hypothesis
 
@Secespitus As an IT architect, I too can confirm this hypothesis. Most my job is translating what the customer says they want into product requirements that the engineers can understand/implement.
 
3:03 PM
@HDE226868 By all means! Like I said, the first paragraph really did work, I just don't have the background to fully understand the rest. It's partly why I avoid the hard science questions. I get the concepts enough to make an answer, but don't have the math to show my work.
 
Most of what I do in QA Automation is explain to programmers why business requirements matter and explain to Project Managers why some things are easy to automate and others are impossible.
 
@Green I was relieved that it worked well the first time around. I spent ~ 2 hours checking through data and making sure things were reasonable enough.
 
@HDE226868 I appreciate your validation efforts. Very few WBers could check your work.
 
@AndyD273 That's Charles Stross’ “necro star” from Palimpsest.
 
@HDE226868 Also, I'm not completely sure I get your mass measurments... 10^1M would be 10 solar masses, 10^2M would be 100 solar masses, which is fine, but the way it's written 10^1-2M is throwing me off.
 
3:11 PM
Black holes don’t suck.
 
@AndyD273 I was trying to write 10^1-10^2 solar masses relatively compactly.
 
@HDE226868 I'd optimize for clarity not compactness.
 
@HDE226868 That's kind of what I was thinking. It was just a little confusing at first because I was trying to figure out if it was some other math that I didn't know about :) I know it's less Hard Science than what you have, but you could simplify it by just saying 10-100 solar masses...
 
@AndyD273 @sphennings Fair point, editing.
 
So it basically works sorta like a giant florescent lightbulb? Energy released by the gas falling into the black hole excites the gas cloud envelope, causing it to light up? Since there is no fusion happening. I'm probably missing something :)
 
3:23 PM
That's basically it, yes.
 
Anyone familiar with Fortran? I want to move some run-time variables from a header file (that needs to be recompiled each time) to a config file that gets loaded on execution.
 
@JDługosz Had to refresh my memory on that. It's been a while since I read that one. The necrostar is just the Sun with a black hole injected into the middle, while this one is a protostar (huge gas cloud that hasn't collapsed enough to bootstrap fusion) with a black hole in the middle.
On a side note, a palimpsest sounds like something that you wouldn't talk about in polite company...
"Did you hear? They found him doing palimpsest!"
"No, I never would have imagined!"
 
Test.
So, what did I miss on the nuclear discussion?
 
@FutureHistorian We're going to skip fission and throw a black hole in the middle of it.
 
I meant in the nuclear terrorist attack discussion earlier.
 
3:30 PM
Which has absolutely nothing to do with your question :)
 
Because I should note: I did an update on the matter.
I changed it to be Iranian terrorists.
Oh and the bomb is now a higher blast yield of 40 kt.
So?
Iranian terrorists sound like a better idea to you?
 
@FutureHistorian Yeah, I kinda gotta admit that I have to agree with the others... It really has a lot of variable that could make it go a lot of different ways.
 
@FutureHistorian Those changes do nothing about the core problem with the question, which is that "Asking for political ramifications of [complicated event X] is likely too broad."
 
It doesn't matter where the bomb comes from
It doesn't matter who drops it, really
 
Well, what does matter?
is lost
 
3:33 PM
Who's in power when it's done, and what their personality is like.
 
Oh.
So, even if I limited the extent of the ramifications, I am still dead?
 
In a case like this you'd have martial law at a start, while the successor is found. Maybe the military takes over, at least for a while?
All travel is shut down for quite a while
 
If I asked the question "What would my character Bob do in the event of a zombie apocalypse." it would be closed as character based. If I edited the question to clarify that I am talking about fast zombies, I haven't done anything to fix what is wrong with the question.
 
why not elbonian terrorists?
 
@JourneymanGeek Nukes made of mud are dirty bombs.
 
3:36 PM
;p
yup
 
@FutureHistorian It really is pretty character dependent, though there are some predicable outcomes that might make a better focus for the question.
And I'd be willing to believe that there is a contingency plan somewhere for this exact thing.
If I were to try to answer the real question as I see it, here's what I'd put.
1. All travel is shut down and martial law is declared. People rush to figure out who the designated survivor is and swear them in as quickly as possible.
2. The military is put on the highest alert while the admirals and generals debate who to nuke first.
3. If somehow WW3 is avoided, and we also avoid the military just taking over, the new president will start searching for new supreme court justices and get an election set up for the house and senate as fast as possible so things can get started back up again. A new temporary capitol will be set up until Washington DC can be rebuilt. If it's too radioactive then it's possible that we'll get a new permanent capitol.
 
3:53 PM
@AndyD273 not quite — they disassembled the sun, putting out the natural fusion. Then used the gas in the more efficient manner, to last for trillions of years.
 
Well, that can work.
 
@FutureHistorian It's a little vague, but here's what I've found so far of the contingency plan:
Continuity of Operations (COOP) is a United States federal government initiative, required by U.S. presidential directive, to ensure that agencies are able to continue performance of essential functions under a broad range of circumstances. The National Security Presidential Directive-51 (NSPD-51), the Homeland Security Presidential Directive-20 (HSPD-20), and the National Continuity Policy specify certain requirements for continuity plan development, including the requirement that all federal executive branch departments and agencies develop an integrated, overlapping continuity capability. The...
 
Well, still, how long can this go on without destroying the US as a political entity anyway?
Alright.
So, further limitations to the States themselves.
0
Q: What would change on a political context in the United States between 2018 and 2020 if they were to be hit by a nuclear terrorist attack?

Future HistorianSo, a little thing that propped into my head was an interesting idea I had. So, let us say it is the year 2018, and a bunch of Iranian terrorists are able to smuggle a 40 kt nuclear device stolen from Pakistan (which fell into a civil war in late 2017 after anti-government protests turned violent...

See?
 
@FutureHistorian That's a tough question. I'd go with "as long as we're able to secure our borders"
 
Political entity is such a nebulous concept that the answer can be basically whatever you want it to be.
 
3:57 PM
I meant as in: the US as a nation ceases to exist.
 
@FutureHistorian "Asking for political ramifications of [complicated event X] is likely too broad."
 
Well, what would you ask if you were the one doing the question?
Well?
If you were the one asking the question, what would you do differently?
 
Honestly I'd pick whatever was best suited for the story I was writing. Once I'd decided on what the political ramifications that resulted in the world I wanted. I'd ask people I trust if they bought my explanation for how the world ended up the way it did.
 
Because I have an idea.
I am going to ask that earlier question of whether the US can withstand the attack or not.
And survive without collapsing on itself.
 
@FutureHistorian That's what I mean. How does a nation cease to exist? The people are still there (or the ones that survive The Event), and the land is still there, even if it's glowing... Even the ones that were taken over by Russia after WW2 were still nations. They became the USSR, but once the USSR fell apart the countries remained...
 
4:06 PM
"Would the United States exist as a nation after [complicated event X]" is a better question. I think it's probably going to be too opinion based. Try it out on the sandbox and see what feedback you get on it.
 
@JDługosz Hmm, yes, upon further rereading of that section I do see that... Very good.
 
Alright, much better.
I think...........
Besides, here we go.
0
Q: Would the US as a nation cease to exist iif a nuclear terrorist attack struck it in 2018?

Future HistorianAlright, so since the earlier question turned out to be too broad, I am going to ask a different one now. Here is the scenario from the earlier question: "So, a little thing that propped into my head was an interesting idea I had. So, let us say it is the year 2018, and a bunch of Iranian terro...

notices grammar error and rushes to fix the question
So? @sphennings and/or @AndyD273? Now is it better?
sighs
I feel alone now.
:(
Either that or I am just too impatient.
 
Probably the latter
 
Oh.
:D
So, is the question better now?
Or still too broad?
Or is it opinion-based now?
 
Did anyone ever compare you to a puppy on speed before?
I mean that in a nice way :)
 
4:14 PM
@FutureHistorian Once you ask a question our only real options are editing, and voting to close. We have a policy against invalidating a question by editing it after it has been answered. The only real option after a question has been answered is voting to close it. Because of this we have a place for people who are unsure of the quality of their questions to get feedback on them before posting them.
We call it the [sandbox](https://worldbuilding.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/4835/sandbox-for-proposed-questions) In the future please refrain from posting a question, then asking chat
"So, is the question better now?, Or still too broad?, Or is it opinion-based now?"
 
@FutureHistorian if you were to put it into the sandbox, I'd propose a slight change in focus... maybe something like "How do I explain the US fracturing into multiple smaller countries" as that's kind of how I'm reading the question now. I don't know if I see that being an outcome of your senario as stated though.
Historically in times of crisis the nation pulls closer together, not fall apart. We don't generally see ourselves as seperate states, and so if the nation is threatened, we're more likely to be more united, at least until the threat is ended.
 
4:36 PM
@AndyD273 I have a good memory for that sort of thing.
 
4:46 PM
@FutureHistorian You got a couple answers there. Pretty close to my own thoughts on the subject.
And I hope I didn't offend with the puppy on speed comment. Just slow down and let things happen. Expecting instant results is a great way to drive yourself crazy.
 
5:41 PM
hmm... I want to update the WB ad on RPG.SE, but the answer isn't a wiki and it's posted by a mod, so I'm worried that modifying it is a faux pas
but I've commented on the answer with a link to the updated image, and have not heard back in like three days
I think the best option would be to make a meta question about it, but I don't like drawing attention to myself, especially on sites I don't frequent
oh, I probably should've said, I'm looking for advice
 
Say, are there any new privileges at 4k?
 
@dot_Sp0T a secret sense of superiority
 
@dot_Sp0T Can't remember any.
@DaaaahWhoosh Make a meta question or talk to someone in their chat.
 
@DaaaahWhoosh I've pinged the mod asking them if they'll take a look.
 
5:49 PM
@HDE226868 oh, that'll probably work
thanks, I think
you guys have a mods-only chatroom, right?
 
Yep.
 
imagine all those morgies going on in there
3
 
hmm... actually, is it possible to flag a post in the moderator chatroom? And if so, what happens?
they could be above the law in there
 
@DaaaahWhoosh well, know we need to now
 
@DaaaahWhoosh It's done.
 
6:01 PM
@DaaaahWhoosh @HDE226868 reached out to us and I've added it in. You did good. Editing that answer ought to be fine; the mod who posted it was doing so on this community's behalf so it should be OK for people from this community to further revise it. I'll check with the mod who posted it to see if they're OK with the post becoming community wiki.
 
@doppelgreener all right, thanks for the change and the advice.
I probably should've just gone ahead and edited it, I now realize I chose the most complex route
 
@DaaaahWhoosh We all put on our Judge Dredd helmets and start shooting. Now you know why moderators don't have a limited period of service; we need them for as long as we can get until the gunfights, uh, "force retirement".
@DaaaahWhoosh It's fine. Your mindfulness and care was well-placed.
Not wholly necessary, but hindsight is 20/20. :)
 
well, now that I know what you guys do behind closed doors, I'll be even more careful when dealing with mods
I'm now going to go refresh RPG.SE constantly until the new ad shows up
 
@DaaaahWhoosh be wary of the ddos
 
the Dark Dungeon of Snakes?
 
6:13 PM
if one guy hitting refresh can ddos you, you have bigger problems
 
in RPG General Chat, 45 secs ago, by Karelzarath
@doppelgreener They're both pretty great, but the new one makes me chuckle.
(this is in reference to the new ad)
 
@DaaaahWhoosh Is this the ad with the knight and wizard fighting the shoggoth?
 
and, fun fact, the knight and wizard are supposed to be the robot and lady from our site's sidebar
not sure if anyone picks up on that
 
I just found the most amazing thing ever...
 
@DaaaahWhoosh well the knight's bulk did make me think of him, but the wizard didn't get me to think of the lady :/
@DaaaahWhoosh but again, nice work mate
 
6:19 PM
that one ^
 
@doppelgreener Yup, that's the one I was thinking of.
 
@DaaaahWhoosh I thought they might be alternate versions of the characters in the old ad, but I didn't realise they were the same characters as in your layout! Cool. :D
 
Well, that failed.
 
@doppelgreener yeah, that was the idea, I guess it's hard to notice without seeing both ads and the site often enough to make the connection. But, fun fact, I sort of invented the lady and the robot
by which I mean I proposed a site design from which certain elements were used in the actual design, one of which was two people looking off into the horizon, one of whom was a robot
 
@JDługosz I finally had the chance to listen to this... That's weird...
 
6:27 PM
@DaaaahWhoosh I remember that. :)
 
lol yeah I really should've taken more time on that sketch
 
I just noticed the meta vs main appearance & clothing differences:
 
0
A: Sandbox for Proposed Questions

Redacted RedactedQ title: Handling railgun recoil I was working on my titan ripping, tank piercing, infinite magazine depth, named after mass-shooters weapons, The Railway series. When a problem hit me: "How in the Creator's name are you going to protect your hands from the recoil?!" When I brought up la...

 
yeah, and I think the cities are different
one of them has a balloon whale
 
6:31 PM
We're special
3
 
@doppelgreener The implication clearly being that meta users are trolls.
 
@HDE226868 Well, of course.
 
Hey, talking about site designs and sketches... Has there ever been any news on the subject of the sketchbook and other swag that was announced around the time that the site came out of beta?
 
@AndyD273 I thought that only went to high-rep users? :(
 
ooh, 'swag' has one of those 'a' sounds that makes it good for screaming in fury
 
6:34 PM
@dot_Sp0T Well, yes, I wasn't talking about YOU getting it, of course.
 
SWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGGG!!!!
 
@AndyD273 I'll hunt you down
 
@dot_Sp0T I believe it goes to the top 72. The good news is that since it's taking so long, you have a chance to get in there!
 
oh wait, that's not the right 'a' sound
it's more like a cry of despair than fury
 
@AndyD273 I thought it was the top-somethingsomething users when the site graduated :/
@AndyD273 also I am not sure if I am ready to whore myself out for another rep-surge again
 
6:38 PM
@DaaaahWhoosh We're not quite there YET... There's still a chance that it could happen...
@dot_Sp0T Yeah, I don't actually know if it was locked in at that time, or if it is set whenever they decide to actually do it...
 
@AndyD273 I can scarcely remember there having been a motion to ask if we could use the logo, etc. for self-ordered-swag
 
@AndyD273 yeah, I just mean I thought the 'a' in swag was like the 'a' in @James. Which is definitely a name I can cry out in fury
 
@DaaaahWhoosh be careful, he might actually hear you!
 
that's the weird thing about the Internet, you can't scream and you can't whisper
 
/whisper @DaaaahWhoosh
ah too bad
 
6:42 PM
@dot_Sp0T Well, the good news is that if you were to do something like that just for personal use, it's likely that no one would ever know or care. If you try to sell to others or market it then it's probably not a good idea
 
@AndyD273 it's still wrong to use it without getting permission
 
some day, I'll look into trying to get myself a Worldbuilding shirt. I would wear it with pride
 
@DaaaahWhoosh I'd wear it with... a fedora - I guess
 
@dot_Sp0T Would you download a car?
 
@AndyD273 if it's shareware, sure
 
6:45 PM
@DaaaahWhoosh Ok, I can kinda see the A in Swag getting a little mixed up with the A in Kahn, which is the classic example, but the A in @James?
 
@AndyD273 I was blinded by fury and despair
I wonder if all the vowels have some sort of emotional connection
 
@dot_Sp0T Yeah, definitely shouldn't do that.
 
@DaaaahWhoosh that could be an interesting basis for a conlang
 
@DaaaahWhoosh That A and O are very similar... ("NOOOOOOOOOOO!")
 
7:08 PM
@Green sure thing, I'll try to get that to you, if not tonight, tomorrow night
 
So it's really annoying on youtube, where you'll see a video with a title like "2017 games we're most excited about" but the thumbnail is some video game character in a bikini or something, and it's annoying because if that is actually a screenshot from any of the games it's just going to be a short piece, which means that it's just a shameless attempt to manipulate guys into clicking on the video. So while I might be interested in upcoming games, I don't want to reward that kind of behavior.
 
@AndyD273 suit yourself, I'm chancing it
 
It's youtube. There isn't going to be anything.
 
@AndyD273 but... I mean, it works
 
the "o" in english is most of the time a diphthong of either /ou/ or /au/
 
7:14 PM
@PedroEtCetera That's fine.
 
@DaaaahWhoosh It does, and that's why I hate it. They know in a long list of videos the one with boobs is going to stand out, even if the actual video has no actual boobs, except for the poor people that click on the video.
 
There is some complexity in the code because jpeg images will introduce subtle color variations (like, [252, 32, 0] instead of [255, 32, 0] as red).
 
@Green what are you talking about?
 
@PedroEtCetera But /ou/ COOOOOOOOOOOOW would just be weird.
 
@dot_Sp0T Pedro gave me some ocean depths data for a world he's building and I'm trying to translate that image into a dataset that I can use in ocean current simulation.
 
7:20 PM
@Green AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH. There I was thinking you were talking steganography
 
@dot_Sp0T It's been really fascinating work actually. I had no idea that python image processing capabilities were as strong as they are. I'm quite impressed.
 
@Green so you're basically translating it into a matrix of depth numbers I guess?
 
@dot_Sp0T Yep.
 
@Green sweet!
 
@dot_Sp0T I think I've also found some python libraries that will let me render the ocean depths in 3D so you could see how deep things are. Staring at the map of depths is okay. Watching it turn in 3space is much more intuitive.
 
7:22 PM
@Green what colour-depth is the picture? Actually it doesn't matter... When translating from colour-points to data you could just use only the 5 highest bits of every byte, that's more than enough resolution to parse any human-made image and should make your code more robust against the slight hue-variations
 
@dot_Sp0T RGB 8 bit. The target dataset is matrix of 32bit or 64bit integers (pretty sure it's int, not float)
The depths are show on a rainbow spectrum so I've got to map each RGB triple to a depth.
@dot_Sp0T I've got the full 8 bits. I'm gonna use it.
 
@Green I was just proposing a non-programming way of bypassing the issue with the subtle variations :D
But I'm definitely interested in your result :D
 
@dot_Sp0T Ah, that is a good idea. I'm not sure my python-fu is that strong yet but I'll dig around.
@dot_Sp0T The package I've found can do atmospheric currents as well as ocean currents so I asked him for topographic maps so I can infer wind patterns.
And from what I read in the literature, the wind currents have a huge effect on the ocean currents. I could fake wind currents but I'd rather get calculated winds from the topography.
@PedroEtCetera, do you have a desired max depth for the dark red regions?
 
7:45 PM
@AndyD273 Sex sells. Youtube just understands this better than most.
 
@NexTerren It's not really youtube, but the channel owners (which is probably what you meant...) I just think it's a crappy practice.
 
@AndyD273 Haha, I agree. Just me being cynical.
 
@kingledion oh that's just nitpicking there
 
And it's not like the internet has a shortage of sex... most of it is not on youtube. If you're looking for it there are better places.
 
8:08 PM
@dot_Sp0T Wait what did I do
 
@kingledion shunting that poor person for writing trillions of light-years instead of far far away
 
Oh, sorry
Well, he did change it to billions
But that wasn't the nicest thing for his first post
 
@kingledion yeah I guess he didn't think Star Wars :/
 
There, I gave him a sympathy upvote
 
@kingledion no bother there, I just thought I'd point it out as it's something I am striving to improve on myself :D
 
8:15 PM
@Green Hey, I am interested in your package that does atmospheric currents as well as ocean currents, especially if its python
 
I mean there was a valid question there "Could an asteroid form with a flat face?" But the more he edits it the more problems are popping up.
 
@Green I have finals in a week, then a whole summer to tackle like 15 questions I favorited about atmospheric circulation
 
I find the question has potential, just need to nudge him to ease on the unnecessary details :D
 
@kingledion It's MITgcm and it's Fortran. From what I've seen, the only need to recompile is to get higher resolution simulations. All the various models and solvers seem to get wrapped up in the same executable.
 
@Green Holy schmokes, I actually used that for my undergrad research project
 
8:17 PM
@kingledion Really? What did you do with it?
 
We re-wrote that and the Princeton Ocean Model in matlab optimized for parallel computing
 
Rewrote it to which language? Python?
 
We made it like 20 times faster when using 16 times as many processors
using MATLAB
That being said, I suppose I was hoping for something more user friendly
 
So you got a 25% increase in performance with Matlab?
 
Although, I suppose numpy does all the same functions MATLAB does, so I might even be able to port my old code to python
 
8:18 PM
Nope, MITgcm is what I'm using.
 
You could parallelize it with CUDA if you own an NVIDIA card
 
@dot_Sp0T That's beyond my means and aims. Cool project though.
 
@dot_Sp0T Someone would have to buy 16 graphics cards
And I don't even know how you mount them....can you stick 16 graphics cards in one server?
 
@kingledion More than my budget allows.
 
@kingledion why?
 
8:20 PM
@kingledion I don't think so. That'd be an absurd powersupply to push enough current for all those cards.
 
Graphics Cards have hundreds of processor-cores on them already
That is why we use them for graphics, because we need raw math power in as-short-as-possible time
 
Ohhhh, I see it lets you use all the shader processors indepdedantly
Interesting
Although for circulation modeling, you'd end up memory limited long before you were processor limited
 
true that
 
What if you went Quadro with like 32GB of RAM on card?
 
But you don't have to use the graphics memory. You can do multiple passes and store results in your normal RAM
 
8:24 PM
@Green Now that would let you do a lot
 
@dot_Sp0T Isn't that slower?
 
@Green you'll be limited by the bus-speeds and read/write on your RAM; but you'd still get lots of calculations done in a short time
 
@dot_Sp0T Well, it turned out for my research project, ethernet bus speed was the limiting factor on faster computations
 
It's funny because we just did an example on parallelizing matrix computations in our parallel programming class
 
@kingledion The Quadro P6000 is a $4500USD card. Holy crap!
 
8:26 PM
@kingledion oooh, did you combine multiple machines via LAN?
 
Alright I saw a little red square pop-up what did I miss?
 
@DaaaahWhoosh THERE, YOU DID IT! ARE YOU HAPPY NOW?!
 
Anyone know of a webcomic that is funny and related to IT work?
 
We had 64 identical processors, but for whatever reason they would not run at the same speed. Any time a prosessor lagged (for microseconds) it would cause a delay to propgate around the ring bus
 
@James UserFriendly?
 
8:27 PM
(other than the occasional xkcd)?
Yeah, SFW
 
...though I'm not sure if UserFriendly is still being written.
 
@kingledion yeah, that's threading for you :D Did you run windows?^^
 
@kingledion How stripped down was the OS on those boxes?
 
Since the nodes had to exchange information every know and then, the lag times on the LAN would propogate round the ring bus like waves; it was actually amazing to see when we would plot the boxes against each other
It was a super bare Red Hat; just the server with MATLAB's distributed computing toolkit
 
@kingledion Curious that microsecond lags would affect the millisecond transfer times on the network.
 
8:28 PM
@dot_Sp0T summoning James is much less dangerous than summoning most other third-level demons
 
@DaaaahWhoosh just make sure not to tell him your real name
 
@Green and yes I saw the price on that thing! Who buys those! That is like 10 playstations
 
@kingledion or 9 real consoles
 
@James A discussion of atmospheric simulation packages.
 
@Green Yeah, I don't care about that...
 
8:30 PM
Boo hiss
 
@kingledion People who either need that kind of horsepower or those who are compensating for something.
@kingledion are you familiar with cubic grids on spheres?
MITgcm 66g claims to support them so I'm trying to learn as much as I can about them.
 
@James Dilbert?
 
So what we (myself and James Greenberg) did was to reformulate the Eulerian grids into Lagrangian vector fields.
Well, he did all the math, I did all the programming
So instead of using set grids, we build vector fields corresponding to motion and then allowed the fields to deform over time. Then we would trade parts of the vector field to adjacent nodes to keep the processors evenly balanced.
 
@kingledion I've seen those words before but I'm not sure what they mean. Keep talking :)
 
As necessary
 
8:34 PM
And that got your performance increases?
 
Yeah, that was the whole point of the research, the Navy paid Greenberg to do this new mathematical interpretation, and I (in the Navy at the time) got tossed in do the programming since he wasn't going to muck around with that.
Frankly, I barely understood what he was doing with the math, but he made me write the paper so it took me like 50 drafts to get all the equations right
It was like 70 pages long
 
@kingledion 25% speed up is no joke.
 
It was ridiculous
I bet not 10 people read it
Yeah, I wonder what ever happened to that work
 
@kingledion Ha! That's like some super long answers on WB sometimes.
 
Greenberg retired, and I went to the surface fleet, so maybe it never got utilized
Anyways, thats my cool 'I was a scientist this one time' story
Actually, it is a fortuitous day to discuss this, because I finally strongarmed someone into being my Master's thesis advisor this morning
2
10 years later
At this rate I'll have a PhD by the time I'm 50!
 
8:38 PM
Congratulations!
 
@kingledion Any idea how much time it would take to shift configuration parameters from compiled-in headers to config files?
 
@kingledion Congratulations
 
@sphennings Thank you
 
The tricky part is that the header file in question is used everywhere.
@kingledion Congratulations!@
 
@Green Just copy and paste, then compile 100 times to fix all the errors that fall out :)
 
8:39 PM
@kingledion Oh gross! XD
 
Yeah, reused headers are the bane of old code
 
...though that's probably what's going to end up happening.
 
We have FORTRAN stuff at work some people made in the 1980s, no one dares touch it
 
If I can get it working, I might push the change back to MIT to see if they'll include in v67.
 
You should
Open source effort by interested parties is the only way that would get done
 
8:41 PM
The fortran doesn't look too bad but that's also the opinion of someone who's never written fortran before.
 
Ok, funny story, the link I sent you to Greenberg's profile page has the code from our project on it
I clicked to take a look, and behold, configuration parameters in the header :)
 
@kingledion Oh geez.
Recompiling my simulation code every time I need to run a slightly different experiment seems like a really bad habit to me.
 
How long does it take to compile?
 
@kingledion Not very long on the boxes I'm working on. Still, it's an extra step and complicates some plans I have for the code base.
 
Yeah, with FORTRAN, I'm imagining the way to go is to modify the code to accept arguments, then you can write a shell script to ram through a buch of different arguments and pipe output to files
 
8:47 PM
If the parameters are just in a config file, I can use the same executable all over the place.
 
Then you can run it all week and check the results later
 
MITgcm compiles down to just one executable so I don't think there's a bunch of arguments to push.
Scripting would be "run it. Okay."
 
So then the shell script would read a set of arguments out of a config file then run the fortran executable on each set of arguments, then store the output somewhere
 
@kingledion if this is about the compiling down to one executable > remember that a) arguments can only be evaluated at runtime, thus there's less optimizing that can be performed by the compiler; b) every evaluation of an argument introduces at least one logic operation (many more if happening inside of any loops)
Which means we end up with something way slower than if we had just made multiple executables :D
 
So I'm a huge functional programming proponent, so by doing it that way, you turn your executable into a closed function that doesn't require any further modification to run all sorts of tests
@dot_Sp0T Well I think he is already down to one executable
You see, that is my primary beef with old code (including my own, apparently) is that the functional mentality isn't there, its a 'script' mentality of writing this code to this task.
 
8:56 PM
If you know you're going to want to run your code multiple times where the only thing that differs is the value of some variables, you should design your code to not need to recompile between executions.
That's just good sense.
 
It was my exposure to python that really taught me the value of piling on layers of functions, to give you maximum flexibility for code reuse
 
While your arguments for.. well.. arguments are good. The reasoning that code written for one specific task is bad.. is just, well, bad reasoning - if you need to get as fast as possible then hardcoding things and compiling different versions can be the way to go
 
If actually need things hardcoded for speed, write a python script to take a config file and set the values in the header file before compiling.
 
@sphennings Now we're talking like a functional programmer :)
 
Or use any other tool in any other language (e.g. #DEFINE in C / C++)
 
9:02 PM
@kingledion I'm talking like a lazy programmer
 
@AndyD273 I pinged a CM about our swag last week ('cause it sure has been a long time with no news), and apparently we and one other site fell into a black hole (more appropriate for us than Salesforce, I guess?). They're trying to get it sorted out and send apologies.
 
It can be hard to tell the difference
 
I've been told that my job is to automate myself out of a job.
 
I'm highly confident our future robot overlords will be buggy enough that they need us around
 
@MonicaCellio I think our 404 page is a black hole, so that's actually spot-on.
 
9:05 PM
A Roman "Swiss Army" knife 2nd - 3rd century AD. It most likely belong to an Officer in the Roman army or a wealthy… https://twitter.com/i/web/status/861607427468296192
 
@kingledion We will know that robots have reached so far past human intelligence that we are screwed when they start writing code that works first time.
 
And to think I thought the fork was a medieval invention. Should have known better... http://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/collections/greeceandrome/70534 ht… https://twitter.com/i/web/status/861622518037319681
 
@kingledion That's why I want to get rid of the header file parameters. By convention, MITgcm pulls from data and config files to run. I'd like to push that paradigm through the entire code base.
 
Well that is definitely admirable
I won't promise that I would help, but it does sound like a good use of my time this summer, when I refuse to turn up the AC and can't sleep
 
@kingledion I'm working off the MITgcm 66g code-base if you're interested.
@kingledion what time zone are you in?
 
9:14 PM
Eastern
 
Ah, me too.
 
If I do find myself interested in a few weeks, I'll send you a message to coordinate
 
Also, it blows me away that MITgcm is hosted on CVS. CVS! REALLY!!?!?!?!?
@kingledion Excellent.
 
It actually does sound like fun...though I do have a master's thesis to start
Yeah CVS....sigh
Maybe we can pull a copy onto git until the headers are cleaned up :)
 
Occasionally, someone will pull in a release to github then abandon it.
 
9:16 PM
CVS is fun
 
If I could give you a negative star for that, I would
CVS is the reason I didn't learn version control for years
 
Isn't CVS the one that can version empty folders?
 
@kingledion I "grew up" on SVN and it was okay. I much prefer Git.
 
@dot_Sp0T I don't know
I don't know anything besides git
I'm like Mike Pence, I don't have dinner with other version control software
 
Okay, I'm off for the evening. Have fun without me!
 
9:23 PM
Sure will
I am also going home for the day.
It was a great day and you were all part of it! See you later
 
9:41 PM
4
Q: Should the rep requirement for Meta be lowered to 1?

LaurelCurrently, brand new (1 rep) users cannot use the sandbox because that privilege is unlocked at 5 rep. However, if we want to change it, a Community Manager can change it. This has already been done for another site (PPCG) for exactly the same reason (the sandbox). According to the relevant meta...

 
 
2 hours later…
11:52 PM
@Secespitus weird?
@AndyD273 there is a flag for misleading thumbnails.
 
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