SGI back from the dead (read: Chapter 11)!!!

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dc_v01
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Unread postby dc_v01 » Sun Oct 15, 2006 3:02 pm

unixmuseum wrote:No, you can't reach the levels of surface modeling with simple solid modeling or primitives, hell no...
Sure, you can do lofts and sweeps even with Solidworks nowadays, but there's much more to it than that. Continuity for instance, G0, G1 and G2, and the control you have over it... What hamei's talking about is hybrid modelers, there aren't that many CAD applications on the market offering this, really only the 4-5 top systems.

I don't need the gallery images to know the limits of CSG vs surfaces. :wink: My quibble was with the phrase "modern" CAD/CAM, which I don't think is only hybrid modelers (And certainly isn't surface-only modelers). I'd describe those "top 4-5 systems" as most advanced, most innovative, best, most capable, whatever, but "modern" isn't exclusive to them. And even in the hybrid systems, I'll bet the surface capabilities are not used by a fair percentage of the users. I just think a substantial percentage of "modern" CAD/CAM doesn't require surface capabilities, and these applications are well served by CSG - in fact, construction via surfaces would be discouraged. There are markets and applications that absolutely require surfaces, but not all do.

unixmuseum wrote:Huh?" back at you:-) Parametric? No, parametric was the shizzle in the 80s... Parametric is nothing, every commercial application offers parametric modeling as a minimum, and quite often variational modeling...

Given hamei's recent complaints about some other programs, and his fondness for work with CNC tape readers, I just wanted to be sure we were on the same page. :) I thought "modern" was interesting in the latter context. To me, parametric is a given, too, but for a surprising number of people it wasn't until quite recently. I never worked with AutoCAD or ME10, thankfully (well, viewed/modifed stuff with the former a bit), but I knew a few people who considered them CAD programs. And there was some amazingly complex stuff that was built with them, never understood how that worked. And I'm completely unable to adapt to the concept of a non-parametric CSG system, but they exist as above.

A lot of the organic shapes hamei's talking about didn't exist in store before CAD/CAM/CAID became practical, simply because the development cost of such surfaces using manual techniques was too high... Nowadays, a plastic Barbie & Ken car is designed using Class-A surfacing techniques, a bottle of shampoo is designed using free form high quality surface modelers, this wasn't the case before...

I was probably being too nitpicky about "didn't exist" - Barbie & Ken cars/shampoo bottles were out well before surface modeling took hold - but I agree it does help reduce development costs and increase the number of applications that can benefit. That's the most important effect to me - spreading the capabilities to new applications. For established industries, I actually think some of the old ways were cheaper than the new techniques for their development- but that's because they'd already invested quite a bit in developing the capabilities - didn't help anyone else with anything new. Market size/manufacturing volume can also be a big factor here.

But, what is your ranking for the "top 4-5" CAD systems?

dc_v01
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Unread postby dc_v01 » Sun Oct 15, 2006 3:03 pm

unixmuseum wrote:That's why you wouldn't make it in the US anymore: "everyone is special, everyone is great" is the M.O. with kids these days... Makes the interview process of young engineers very "interesting" sometimes :-D

Too true....

unixmuseum
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Unread postby unixmuseum » Sun Oct 15, 2006 3:36 pm

dc_v01 wrote:But, what is your ranking for the "top 4-5" CAD systems?
Well, not in any particular order, the usual suspects are Catia 5, NX4, I-DEAS and Pro/E... In terms of marketshare on the low-end (or midrange), I guess one can't forget to mention Solidworks, but it's nowhere near the 4 I mentionned before...

BTW, AutoCAD, ME10, CADAM, they're all CAD systems... There was life before solid modeling, a lot of life, the good old days (at least for old farts like hamei & I :-D )...

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blackcube
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Unread postby blackcube » Sun Oct 15, 2006 6:21 pm

unixmuseum wrote:BTW, AutoCAD, ME10, CADAM, they're all CAD systems... There was life before solid modeling, a lot of life, the good old days (at least for old farts like hamei & I :-D )...


My last version of AutoCAD is V12. It does everything I ask of it, so I've never considered upgrading. All of my things are 2D wiring diagrams, so it's pretty low end. I still run it on my Dell Dimension Pro200 - Pentium Pro 200 128mb ram, Windows 98, Kurta IS-1 tablet, Zericon PC3610 C/D pen plotter, Apple LaserWriter 8500 for A/B plots.
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angora
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Unread postby angora » Tue Oct 17, 2006 8:34 pm

R-ten-K wrote:
hamei wrote:Right, but you will agree that is quite a far cry from the "most inovative company in history of computing ever!!!" that you were saying with a straight face earlier in the thread. No one was saying that SGI was not innovative (albeit not much during the past half a decade or more, which is an eternity in computing industry years), it just that falls rather short from being even close to the "most inovative"


SGI innovated awesome coloured cases. The Crimson, Indigo, Indigo2, these machines all have sweet-ass case colours that chump companies can't even compare to today, much less the even more innovative things like granite keyboards and sparkles when you click an icon. Vista is going to be like 30gigs of diskspace just for the text editor, and it can't do sparkles. WTF?

Some innovations are important like the "I want Red" mug. Other innovations such as OS/360, out of order execution, penut butter and jelly sandwiches, and ccNUMA architectures are really over-rated. You got to look beyond the surface and see real innovation. Like the way Steve Jobs can steal shit, skirt human rights violations in the apple Longhua factory, buy emagic and kill it's PC offerings, have those dumb comercials where the PC guy falls over even though the Mac is basically a PC now. The way Steve Jobs gets away with all that stuff and looks like the good guy fighting against the evil Bill Gates and his evil $30 billion charty fund; that's real innovation right there, not some PDP-8 junk.

Xerox PARC? Please! Total losers that could pull a good espresso shot to save their lives. What have they ever done for computing? It's not like some hot chick from my stats class wouldn't have invented GUIs as we know them. It's real innovation man. Like the einstein cube that came with the indy. That is the stuff that puts your company on top, not this MMU crap.

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R-ten-K
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Unread postby R-ten-K » Tue Oct 17, 2006 9:28 pm

I don't know what you just ate/drank/snorted/injected/smoked BUT I WANT SOME OF THAT! :P
"Was it a dream where you see yourself standing in sort of sun-god robes on a
pyramid with thousand naked women screaming and throwing little pickles at you?"

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Frapazoid
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Unread postby Frapazoid » Wed Oct 18, 2006 5:47 am

angora wrote:The way Steve Jobs gets away with all that stuff and looks like the good guy fighting against the evil Bill Gates and his evil $30 billion charty fund; that's real innovation right there, not some PDP-8 junk.


Not only that, but be a big hit with the liberal hippies too :?
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angora
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Unread postby angora » Wed Oct 18, 2006 2:02 pm

R-ten-K wrote:I don't know what you just ate/drank/snorted/injected/smoked BUT I WANT SOME OF THAT! :P


It's mah Indigo2. She's a sexy beast! :P

Hehehe....The real truth is that SGI innovated sexy computers that made people want them even if they really didn't have a use for them. If they were smart, they'd re-work indigo magic to work with enlightenment, eterm, etc. and make it the gui for their own version of linux. Then just sell standard PCs in ultra-sexy cases running linux for a small premium that is about the same as a windows XP license. The idea being that you pay the within $100 of the cost of a normal PC, but you get a sexy case instead of a windows license.

Then they could have a comercial where a guy goes "Hi, I'm a Mac" and the girl standing next to him kicks him in the nuts and says "I'm hell'uva sexy". When the Mac guy hits the floor she walks off and says "Buy a real computer" as the cube logo appears.

See, I could have these po'buckers making cash in no time. I'd sell the machines in four or five different colours too, and have a special a addtion pink argyle case for October.

....Maybe I should get on that. My mom wants me to write my own OS so she doesn't get all those bloody popups from windows. ....humm.

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Dr. Dave
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Unread postby Dr. Dave » Wed Oct 18, 2006 7:26 pm

angora wrote:Then they could have a comercial where a guy goes "Hi, I'm a Mac" and the girl standing next to him kicks him in the nuts and says "I'm hell'uva sexy". When the Mac guy hits the floor she walks off and says "Buy a real computer" as the cube logo appears.


ROFLMAO!

That's just *brilliant!*

Yer hired...
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SAQ
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Unread postby SAQ » Wed Oct 18, 2006 8:27 pm

angora wrote: "Buy a real computer" as the cube logo appears.


Just a pity that their new offerings arent "real computers".

They'd need to engage in a great deal of engineering to transform a PC into a real computer. HyperTransport and PCIe are a step in the right direction, but the mantra of PC makers is "performance as long as it's cheap".

They'd need to roll their own support logic and firmware (BIOS is not even good enough to be a bad joke) to turn one of these into a real computer. The much-maligned Altix is a better example of what SGI can do (even with technology a couple of years old) than somebody else's PC with a cube stuck on the front. Build a x86_64 system around that technology, throw in OpenFirmware (ARCS and SRM are nice, but OpenFirmware has compatible cards on the market now) and a high-end graphics system and you'll have a real computer.

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gcb
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Unread postby gcb » Fri Oct 20, 2006 9:28 am

http://www.sgi.com/features/2006/october/growth/

i'd forget about sgi. they're just stating that they're going to be more like dell.

Sun is getting up.

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skywriter
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Unread postby skywriter » Fri Oct 20, 2006 12:48 pm

gcb wrote:http://www.sgi.com/features/2006/october/growth/

i'd forget about sgi. they're just stating that they're going to be more like dell.


I don't see that at all. the most successful companies will exceed in one of three categories:

1) operational excellence
2) customer focused
3) technical superiority

Dell is one of the best examples of #1. they compete by managing the product creation and delivery process in the extreme.

SGI was a good example of #3 up until the the mid 90's when their technology was unmatched in their market. most of that has gone by the wayside. and although they still have compelling technology in ccNUMA; the market in small.

now they are striving to be an example of #2 by playing in the 'solutions' market.

sgi PR wrote:As it redoubles its focus on solving problems for customers in its core technical markets, the new SGI business model - and its expanded potential within new and existing customer organizations - is built in part around solutions that help enterprises address the data explosion underway within companies worldwide.


which explains their new partner lineup, and product development (on non-development whichever way you want to look at it).

some companies can succeed by doing two of the three 'very well'. if they maintain NUMALINK and ReconfigurableProcessing technology steady enough they could claim to still good at #3. but this is looking doubtful in the long run. they'll lose pace as soon as anyone catches up. QDR Infiniband is a multigigabyte commodity shared memory (RDMA) interconnect. which could easily displace NUMALINK. FPGA's on PCI-EX cards can finish the rest. the downfall of this hardware is only a matter of software now.

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squeen
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Unread postby squeen » Fri Oct 20, 2006 4:45 pm

dc_v01 wrote: I never worked with AutoCAD or ME10, thankfully (well, viewed/modifed stuff with the former a bit), but I knew a few people who considered them CAD programs. And there was some amazingly complex stuff that was built with them, never understood how that worked.


Holy smokes!...they designed and built the Apollo rockets and Space Shuttle with pen and paper. yeesh!

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hamei
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Unread postby hamei » Fri Oct 20, 2006 7:09 pm

squeen wrote: Holy smokes!...they designed and built the Apollo rockets and Space Shuttle with pen and paper. yeesh!

You could always do anything - look at Italian cars of the thirties :-) But what Octanes running Pro/E or I-DEAS did, was make designs such as modern auto interiors economical to produce. Patternmakers used to have to make a cup-saucer-spoon to become journeymen. It took time and skill. Now a pimply-faced teenager with a peecee and $5,000 worth of software can do the same thing. Or something very similar, at any rate. Good enough for most people ...

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virtualsim
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Unread postby virtualsim » Sat Oct 21, 2006 5:52 am

hamei wrote:
squeen wrote: Holy smokes!...they designed and built the Apollo rockets and Space Shuttle with pen and paper. yeesh!

You could always do anything - look at Italian cars of the thirties :-) But what Octanes running Pro/E or I-DEAS did, was make designs such as modern auto interiors economical to produce. Patternmakers used to have to make a cup-saucer-spoon to become journeymen. It took time and skill. Now a pimply-faced teenager with a peecee and $5,000 worth of software can do the same thing. Or something very similar, at any rate. Good enough for most people ...


Ah! So that's how american car interiors are designed nowadays! No wonder... It was the PFY all along... :wink:
In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice...
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