Kubuntu a dist in crisis?

Steve Lamb grey at dmiyu.org
Tue Oct 27 20:51:55 UTC 2009

Paul Rumelhart wrote:
> Take a look at the Computer Languages Benchmark Game:
> http://shootout.alioth.debian.org/

    I am familiar with the shootout, thanks.  More so than you, it seems.

> They run different programs written in a variety of languages on the same
> architecture and show the results.

    No, they run different test algorithms written in a variety of languages.

> You almost always see C and C++ (with
> different compiler optimizations) at the top and scripted languages like
> Perl, Python, and Ruby at the bottom when measuring speed and resource
> usage.  Occasionally, something like Haskell or Ada will do surprisingly
> well.

    And?  I never refuted that.  I also pointed out that programmer work
declines dramatically as well.  So move your eyes over to the third column and
state what output there.

> Scripting languages have a different goal in mind, in my opinion, that
> makes them unsuitable for some types of programming.

    Agreed.  Which is why I made the difference between system programming (C)
and application programming (Python).

> In the data tables on the page referenced above, the
> difference is often minutes compared to a few seconds.

    Sometimes, not often.  And again, these are algorithms and tests designed
to exaggerate differences.

> If every
> application library and application front-end was written in a scripting
> language, our vast memory, CPU, and hard-disk resources wouldn't save us
> from a sluggish, unusable system. 

    Which is never what I said.  On the other hand there have been
applications which were written in Python and compared to their C counterparts
weren't all that harsh on the CPU or memory.  Bittorrent clients come to mind.

> When it comes down to it, a programming language is a tool.  Use it where
> it makes sense.

    Yes, now like I said, move your eyes over to the third column and see what
the shootout shows.  Some algorithms are 1/3rd the size of the C counterparts.
  Put that in perspective.  A 60,000 line project in C would be 20,000 lines
in Python.  As I said, a factor or two more CPU/RAM usage (0.5% to 2.5%, 3mb
to 12Mb, for example) to obtain several magnitudes of savings on the code
side?  Absolutely!

    You don't think these languages are up to the task.  I do.  You have the
shootout on your side.  I've got practical applications on mine.

         Steve C. Lamb         | But who decides what they dream?
       PGP Key: 8B6E99C5       |   And dream I do...

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