Computer Nerdery 2016-04-17

Note - “Computer Nerdery” was a newsletter I ran a while back. Moving archives here for posterity.

It’s a bit late in the contest, but you can still spend some time enjoying the world’s largest trivia contest at - great music, and the hosts get loopy from sleep deprivation on the last day.

A Really Interesting Tape Drive Algorithm

Once you get past the click-bait title, this one’s a really good read. Give the Vitter paper it references a read too, if you’ve got the time.

Is the security of quantum computing guaranteed by the laws of physics?

DJB kills it again. Worth it for the abstract alone.

AlphaGo: How It Works

A really good overview of the techniques used to drive AlphaGo, the computer that beat Lee Sedol recently

A Decade of Wasted Cores

Some researchers found 4 different bugs in the Linux scheduler that left cores unutilized while there were threads waiting. Their paper gives a good background to how Linux has handled scheduling over the years

Shattering Reality

I really hadn’t thought too much of how glass breakage is simulated in video games, but it turns out to be a computationally hard problem. It’s got me wanting to re-play some of my games that I know have glass breaking (like GTA Vice City and Red Faction) and see how well they handle breakage.