[FoRK] Stand up and face the future
sdw at lig.net
Mon Dec 21 02:11:54 PST 2009
Jeff Bone wrote:
> There's this occupational hazard we programmers, techie types, and
> similar geeks face as we ease on down that road to professional
> "Parallel programming? That's just like doing multi-tasking on big
> iron. We were doing that 10 years ago. More."
Hey, I get to do that now! How's this?
He worries about Buddylist-like applications with 7 billion users
(Presence/IM, Twitter (which is just presence with 140 character status
and no IM), etc.).
Buddylist @ AOL in 1995-1998 handled 3-8 million simultaneous users with
100Mhz (PA Risc ) and 1GB RAM. Assuming the same rate of efficiency,
scaling, and usage (not accurate, but within an order or two of
magnitude), 7 Billion users would take:
2333 machines of the same power
4 computers with 3Ghz dual quad-core with hyperthreading (does not
include various other benefits of modern processors)
36 computers with 64GB of RAM.
With 2 orders of magnitude of overhead (larger IDs, more frequent
"updates", terribly expensive protocols requiring communication
concentration), that's 3600 nodes max for real-time tracking of every
living person. Not so tough. Or so it seems.
> But with this article, at least the author has had the courage and has
> made the effort to cast off some assumptions that may be convenient
> and comfortable but are prima facie false. At least he has had the
> courage to stand up and face the future, unflinching, and tell it like
> it is.
The idea of an open post-feudal market, the "Ambient Cloud", is very good.
> I wish more of us did this. I wish I did more often.
> Read it:
It's a nice read actually. A freaking kitchen sink of ideas,
references, and ideas, but nice.
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