Apropos of Mark's story last night about the mole-man of Hackney
who has tunneled from his basement under the homes of his neighbors, this tid-bit about supercomputing pioneer Seymour Cray's digging habits:
John Rollwagen, a colleague for many years, tells the story of a French scientist who visited Cray's home in Chippewa Falls. Asked what were the secrets of his success, Cray said "Well, we have elves here, and they help me". Cray subsequently showed his visitor a tunnel he had built under his house, explaining that when he reached an impasse in his computer design, he would retire to the tunnel to dig. "While I'm digging in the tunnel, the elves will often come to me with solutions to my problem", he said.
Update: Mr Bali Hai sez, "I worked for Cray Research from 1984-1996, and I can tell you that the
story of him tunneling under his house is largely a fabrication made up by
John Rollwagen to enhance Seymour's reputation as a quirky, visionary
genius (which he was, but not because he was digging tunnels under his
house). What actually transpired involved Seymour having some excavation
work done on his basement by contractors. As far as I know, none of them
were elves. Rollwagen also took an incident where Seymour burned a sailboat at his
lake house and turned it into a mythic tale of Cray building a new
sailboat every year, then burning it so he could design and build a new
one the following year."
Alex Wood is an addict but won’t give up his smartphone. But he has five strategies for limiting its control over him: “I used to wake up tired. My body would ache and my head felt sore, like waking up with a hangover. Finally, I took control, like attending an AA class for addicts, I […]
We just got the Sport model of the EPIKGO hoverboard at my office. Besides being terribly chic, it’s apparently bulletproof.
Ok, it’s not just solar powered. It’s also an anti-theft, waterproof marvel that keeps my phone’s power bar from ever getting into the red.Sure the idea seems obvious now – tuck a gigantic solar powered battery pack into an exposed slot and turn the wearer into a walking energy harvester. Simple maybe, but I didn’t […]
You know the drill. You go to the dentist and they ask you how often you floss. You lie through your teeth and say, “every day!” (Bonus points if you have some cilantro or chives stuck in your gums from lunch). You don’t want to keep up the charade any longer, but rubbing that tiny strand […]
The Raspberry Pi Foundation has done outstanding work packing a fully capable desktop computer into a package the size of a deck cards—especially one that only costs $35. But if you already have a working laptop, why should you care? Oh, how much you have to learn. Besides operating well as a compact digital media hub, […]
Custom coffee vessels are the perfect piece of office flair, but it’s just a matter of time before your VOTE FOR PEDRO mug will start to lose its relevant wit. Why not have a new one every day, with whatever silly nonsense you want sticking off the sides? You can save big on your novelty […]