Archive for May, 2008

Old-tattered-notebook-from-1999 notes

2008-05-27

So, these are probably more useful here than sitting in a dusty binder…

2003.07

  • “Common Lisp, Typing, and Mathematics” by Francis Sergereart – good (long) paper about one application of Common Lisp; Postscript here
  • “Getting Started With LaTeX”, David R. Wilkins – here

2004.07

  • AT&T Graphviz – very very useful program for visualization of directed and undirected graphs

2005.04

  • Croquet (from the Croquet Project, not to be confused with the Croquet Consortium) – by my description, an attempt to extend the original 2-dimensional paradigm for a GUI into 3 dimensions; by their description, “Croquet is a powerful new open source software development environment and software infrastructure for creating and deploying deeply collaborative multi-user online applications and metaverses on and across multiple operating systems and devices.”… I think it’s an interesting project, anyhow. Check out some of the papers Alan Kay helped write, and look at some of the videos.

2005.??

  • JGraph – some sort of graphing and visualization software, open-source and written in Java
  • Ploticus – more graphing and visualization, not as shiny as JGraph, but not Java either; apparently good for on-the-fly graph generation, for websites and such
  • TeXmacs – ” GNU TeXmacs is a free wysiwyw (what you see is what you want) editing platform with special features for scientists.”… it puts Mathematica’s rendering to shame.

2005.08.23

  • Very useful link for using matrices in POV-Ray
  • Media and Particle Systems in POV-Ray, here
  • Photons & caustics in POV-Ray, here

2006.12.11

  • “Weaving the Web”, Tim Berners-Lee – “The original design and ultimate destiny of the World Wide Web, by its inventor.”

2006.12.15

  • Grasshopper Enterprises, “Borders of science, boundaries of imagination,” might be complete and total bullshit, but the page has some interesting things on lucid dreaming and other workings of the mind

2007.04.19

  • cachegrind – cache profiler, part of the valgrind suite, designed to pinpoint cache misses in code
  • I don’t know why, but I wrote down “BDI2000 JTAG”, maybe because the Abatron BDI-2000 can be used to debug the Linux kernel via JTAG?

2007.04.26

  • “The Grand Inquisitor” from “The Brothers Karamazov” by Fyodor Dostoevsky  –  I think I’m supposed to read this because I don’t know why else I’d have written it down.

2007.11.02

2008.05.26

20 pages of scrap notes, 2008.05.19-05.23

2008-05-24

I astound myself by how many pages of scrap notes I accumulate over 5 days, just during my down time at work.

2008.05.19

  • “Exposing the Modern Racist Paradigm,” extremely long page here
  • Someone’s opinions on why the Amiga is awesome, here . . . meaningful to me because I haven’t used an Amiga
  • Simputer – “self-contained, open hardware handheld computer, designed for use in environments where computing devices such as personal computers are deemed inappropriate.” (quoth wikipedia)… this looks like a project that didn’t do as well as expected and is rather old right now, but it looks interesting anyhow.
  • Someone’s blog about the memristor, and why it’s the 4th circuit element, and why he thinks it’s useful/revolutionary.
  • Reversible computing . . . worthy of consideration

2008.05.20

  • Intel Atom D945GCLF motherboard from Tranquil PC Ltd. – $82 for motherboard with 1.60 GHz Atom 230; looks like a pretty good deal
  • OLPC XO 2.0 – new version of the XO, which “isn’t really a laptop at all but a double-screened, fold-up electronic book”, and which Negroponte has a goal of being producing for $75 each.
  • Pen Computing – good resource on mobile/handheld/rugged computing products

2008.05.21

  • Lulu – Self publishing service; allows you to publish (as in, actual physical books that can be purchased online) with no setup fees. You keep 80% of creator revenue on sales, and you keep the copyrights to the material.
  • Adam Smith’s Lost Legacy – because someone’s pissed about how people constantly mangle what Adam Smith said

2008.05.22

  • Digilent Inc. – Offers some inexpensive starter boards with Xilinx Spartan FPGAs or Atmel AVR microcontrollers
  • Xtreme Data, Inc. – “Database Analytics Appliance able to sustain 1TB/min of SQL processing”… well, that’s kinda boring, but I suppose it does live up to the name, and somehow accomplishes this with FPGAs.
  • DRC Computer Corporation – offers Reconfigurable Processor Unit which fits into an AMD Opteron socket on a multiway board, allowing it to directly connect to its bus and access memory, and offload CPU-intensive software routines to hardware; they use Xilinx FPGAs for this.
  • Project VGA – “Low Budget, Open Source, VGA Compatible video card”
  • FPGA Central – Good resource for FPGA links

2008.05.23

  • Llamasoft Blog – From the maker of one of my favorite games, Llamatron. He has written some interesting software.
  • JavaSpaces – distributed shared memory in Java, along with other stuff, and part of Jini from Sun. This could be neat if I actually used Java.
  • VX32 – “virtual extension environment” for x86; one can run x86 apps in this for a secure, isolated environment in which they are limited in what they are allowed to do.
  • ACL2 (Applicative Common Lisp) – “both a programming language in which you can model computer systems and a tool to help you prove properties of those models,” and part of the Boyer-Moore family of theorem provers

Overdue scrap notes, 2008.05.01-05.16

2008-05-17

2008.04.30

  • Reaktor diary: might be helpful as I learn to use Reaktor
  • Despite that this program is not open source but proprietary, it offers more comprehensible insight into its workings than any of the open source synth software I have tried so far.
  • Given, I’ve only used a couple premade instruments, but their internal structure is out-in-the-open in the form of modules, not as blocks of code that I would have a hard time finding and a harder time comprehending.

2008.05.06

  • Chilling Effects Clearinghouse: “A joint project of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and (about a dozen schools)…. Chilling Effects aims to help you understand the protections that the First Amendment and intellectual property laws give to your online activities.”
  • Linux Softpedia – EDA: looks like a good collection of Electronic Design Automation software for Linux
  • Signs (or here): “a tool for logic synthesis and gate level simulation… include synthesis of RTL-style VHDL circuit descriptions and a dynamic graphical netlist viewer…”
  • KTechLab: “…an Open Source Intergated Design Environment (IDE) for electronic and PIC microcontroller circuit design and simulation.”
  • Alliance CAD: “a complete set of free CAD tools and portable libraries for VLSI design… includes a VHDL compiler and simulator, logic synthesis tools, and automatic place and route tools.”
  • Octeon Plus – some chip, 4 to 16 MIPS64 core, 600-1000 MHz, 15-40W power usage… looks pretty fast (Linuxdevices link)
  • Helpful link about silkscreening/screenprinting from nomediakings.org

2008.05.09

  • “This Film is Not Yet Rated” (IMDB) – some movie my friend Adam recommended; looks like the full version is online, for now, at Google Videos
  • Univ. of Manchester, Advanced Processor Tech. Group – good link for some software projects and papers relevant to processors
  • “In Defense of Lost Causes” – Slavoj Zizek (Amazon)… maybe an interesting book from a “Slovene sociologist, philosopher, and cultural critic.” who describes himself as a Marxist
  • Right Is Wrong: How the Lunatic Fringe Hijacked America, Shredded the Constitution, and Made Us All Less Safe” – Arianna Huffington (Amazon) . . . just in case you needed more anti-conservative propaganda
  • Past public lectures from Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics are available here (though videos look like mostly Windows Media Player or Flash).
  • SIMH: software from the Computer History Simulation Project, able to simulate (not emulate?) a variety of rather old hardware, like the DEC PDP

2008.05.16

  • Excerpts from Einstein’s letter to Eric Gutkind on 1954-01-03 – expresses some of his views on religion pretty well… apparently lining up a bit with the “Deus sive nature” views of Spinoza
  • Reconfigurable computing… worth learning about.
  • Microcode… also worth learning about, particularly with x86
  • FpgaC: “FpgaC compiles a subset of the C language to net lists which can be imported into an FPGA vendors tool chains… excellent alternative to VHDL/Verilog for algorithmic expression of FPGA reconfigurable computing tasks.” . . . like an HLL rather than an HDL.
  • Atmel FPSLIC: AVR microcontroller and SRAM-based FPGA combined on one die
  • Achronix: FPGAs running up to around 2 GHz
  • OpenCores: Designs and publishes core designs (for FPGAs, CPLDs, ASICs in general) under a license based on the LGPL
  • OpenFPGA: Promote FPGAs in blahblahblah by trying to have open standards and information and practices
  • Pragmatic Marketing: I dunno, but I’ve read a few useful links here

2008.05.16

Scrap notes, 2008.04.25ish-2008.05.03

2008-05-05
  • Adobe Open Screen Project – apparently Adobe is now opening up the SWF and FLV formats, which hopefully soon means significantly less trouble getting Flash to work for me on Linux.
  • Tilera TILE64 – some sort of chip with 64 interconnected cores (or “tiles”); according to their site, tiles can be grouped into clusters, and the chip can run multiple operating systems simultaneously. Maybe kinda neat.
  • Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest – “whimsical literary competition that challenges entrants to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels.” Kinda interesting to read.
  • Contiki OS – “Contiki is a small, open source, highly portable, multitasking computer operating system developed for use on a number of memory-constrained networked systems ranging from 8-bit computers to embedded systems on microcontrollers, including sensor network motes.” (from Wikipedia entry). Apparently can run from a few KB and provide multitasking and TCP/IP, as well as a full GUI if given about 30 KB. It runs on a variety of systems, including AVR micros, Commodore, Apple II, blahblahblah. Looks handy.
  • Sort of reminds me of the TRON Project despite not really being anything like it.