[Tfug] Cheap Memory = Lardy Men.

Robert Hunter hunter at tfug.org
Tue Dec 18 07:21:29 MST 2007

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On Mon, Dec 17, 2007 at 08:28:41PM -0700, Bowie J. Poag wrote:
> Good news is, if Moore's Law begins to break down, more people will 
> realize they're cutting holes in fat men's houses. The solution isn't to 
> cut holes in the sides of buildings, or build a bigger houses for fatter 
> and fatter men. The solution is to keep the fried chicken away from the 
> fat man in the first place.

Hehe.  So, what is the final message here, Bowie?  We should all run
Pentium 75s with 16MiB of RAM?  Write software in assembly with line
editors?  Debuggers --  bah!  Those are for pussies! ;-)

OK, you do have one point, which might be phrased as "necessity is
the mother of invention."  So, sometimes when people are faced with a
constraint, they will come up with an ingenious solution.

On the other hand, you are assuming optimization criteria which might
not always apply, such as "you must complete this task in the least
possible amount of memory."  Also, you seem to imply that an algorithm
which is optimized for memory use, will also have optimal time
complexity.  This is often not the case.  Ever hear of time-space

Optimization criteria might also include labor and training costs.
For instance, would you write a data-mining tool in C, or assembly?
Probably not.  You might instead use a slow, memory-hogging, scripting
language which is very good at text processing (e.g., Perl).

Moral of the story?  Use the right tool for the job.  It helps to keep
an open mind. ;-)

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