Subject: Re: Working Spice for Linux?
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Date: Fri, 18 Oct 2002 10:40:42 -0500
NNTP-Posting-Date: Fri, 18 Oct 2002 10:17:30 EST
"Spam Hater" wrote in message news:firstname.lastname@example.org...
> Hi John,
> It's not a matter of their programming skills. It's their not
> understanding the underlaying mathematics involved.
> There's some -serious- math going on inside there. All of the "fixed"
> versions I've seen, and I've looked at a few, were done by people
> without the necessary knowledge of the mathematics involved.
Refer to the rather useful VM algorithms in FreeBSD, and the attempts
to replicate the behavior (by the large number of Chimps in a room.)
The VM enhancements were done on my own free time, with collaboration
from other committed developers, without direct
funding. It did require alot of deep understanding of the feedback
mechanisms that would maintain a less chaotic behavior. If I was
very time constrained, the 1yr part time conceptual work would have
been short-circuited. Some researchers in schools aren't time
constrained, but most seem to be limited in resources (either
by themselves, by the funding, or competing interests.) Alas, I
could have just as happily worked to improve Spice, or get hooked
on another interesting development. It is an extreme underestimate
of many who have 'hobbies', that they are not also working
engineers/compsci/math-savvy (like me.) Even Kevin's work is likely
an extension of a hobby idea (and is, like mine, a hobby that had
gone wild.) That deep involvement in my own hobby has taken a
few years to divorce myself (it ended up subsuming my life.)
I have found ALOT of very competent people who do interesting things
for hobbies. My own hobby work is beyond the abilities of many people
who do my sort of 'hobby work' for a living. There is a difference in
expertise, and 'labors of love' by people who are competent will often
overtake the 'work product' of those who are also 'just competent.'
Don't be confused by the sort-of people who are SOMETIMES interviewed
by Art Bell as the only kind of people who have hobbies.
There is too much the view that the only challenges are security
exploits, and/or all inventions have already been invented. There
is ALOT of suboptimal workproduct from the universities and
commercial realm. It would be great if more people would
indulge more 'productive' hobbies. Alot more good stuff could/would
be produced. Spice is only one example of unversity work product
that benefits from significant upgrading.
For example, the math and nonlinear solvers in Spice are well within
my capabilities (I even maintained my own spice for years.) However,
I never took it on as my primary hobby work product, therefore it didn't
get the 'labor of love' treatment. Some of these kinds of hobbies turn
into insane 'fractal antenna' type projects, but otherwise, some are also