Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Open discussion on or around SGI; software/hardware related posts should go in the appropriate subforum.
Forum rules
Any posts concerning pirated software or offering to buy/sell/trade commercial software are subject to removal.
User avatar
josehill
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3334
Joined: Mon Jun 06, 2005 9:53 pm
Location: New England, USA
Contact:

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby josehill » Wed Nov 29, 2017 2:41 pm

VenomousPinecone wrote:We are fighting entropy and it is a losing battle.

I seriously will never forget the moment almost 30 years ago when I was wrestling with equations for my Physical Chemistry course, and I finally understood entropy at the mathematical level. Entropy has no mercy...probably the most sobering thing I learned in college. I was young and immortal until that moment! :lol:

jwhat
Posts: 317
Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 6:25 pm
Location: Australia

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby jwhat » Wed Nov 29, 2017 4:55 pm

Hi josehill & venomousepinecone,

ha ha ha ... as a poor sod with a physics degree, I have to admit you are right. We have been battling against entropy in parallel universes.

But the ignorant practical biologist in us refuses to give up the fight ;-)

Cheers from Oz,

jwhat.
jwhat - ask questions, provide answers

Shiunbird
Donor
Donor
Posts: 416
Joined: Fri May 06, 2016 1:43 pm
Location: Czech Republic

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby Shiunbird » Thu Nov 30, 2017 1:48 am

josehill wrote:I seriously will never forget the moment almost 30 years ago when I was wrestling with equations for my Physical Chemistry course, and I finally understood entropy at the mathematical level. Entropy has no mercy...probably the most sobering thing I learned in college.


Could you share something on the matter?
A short-ish read?

That sounds fascinating!
ImageImage

User avatar
josehill
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3334
Joined: Mon Jun 06, 2005 9:53 pm
Location: New England, USA
Contact:

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby josehill » Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:44 am

Shiunbird wrote:
josehill wrote:I seriously will never forget the moment almost 30 years ago when I was wrestling with equations for my Physical Chemistry course, and I finally understood entropy at the mathematical level. Entropy has no mercy...probably the most sobering thing I learned in college.


Could you share something on the matter?
A short-ish read?

That sounds fascinating!


I'll look around to see if I can find something. The challenge is to bridge the gap between simple (but reasonably accurate) analogies about disorder (like throwing a deck of playing cards in the air and expecting them to land in numeric order, i.e. the chances of things becoming more disordered or "breaking" vastly outnumber the chances of maintaining the status quo or improving, or "errors accrue, and they kill us") and the collection of math skills and related knowledge needed to make you say, "Yeah, it really is true." I understood all the analogies when I was a teenager, but it took a lot of math and physics courses before I had enough working knowledge to have a breakthrough in understanding. I also have little doubt that a professional physicist in the field would consider the level of hard-won understanding I had in college to be woefully naive.

I had a similar experience "doing the math" for relativity. It's one thing to be told that the apparent mass of an object increases as it approaches the speed of light, in a way that ensures it never can reach the speed of light, but it's quite another to build up the math skills and physics knowledge that let you evaluate the equations and see it for yourself. It's when you go from "surely there must be a loophole that will give us warp drive, because I want to be Captain Kirk," to "Wow, we'd need an entirely new understanding of how the universe works to think about going faster than the speed of light in any useful way. It ain't happening soon."

User avatar
vishnu
Donor
Donor
Posts: 3189
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2007 3:25 pm
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota USA

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby vishnu » Thu Nov 30, 2017 2:53 pm

Not to mention that time stops at the speed of light and the apparent size of the Universe shrinks to zero... :shock:
Project:
Temporarily lost at sea...
Plan:
World domination! Or something...

:Tezro: :Octane2:

MrBill
Posts: 272
Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 12:50 pm
Location: Vero Beach, Florida

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby MrBill » Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:12 am

I took a bit of a vacation and have a bit of a clearer head now. Ditched my old crummy job, it gave me lots of free time to troubleshoot the problems i was having and get things back on track. I thank everyone here for the advice. I was having a real bad day with both my onyx machines developing issues. I still do worry about the long term for maintaining the machines, but as of right now, i have things back up and running.
:Octane: :Octane: :Octane: :Octane2: :Indy: :Indy: :Indigo: :Indigo2: :Crimson:Image :Tezro: :Tezro: :Onyx2: :Onyx2: :Onyx: :OnyxR: :BA213:

User avatar
GRudolf94
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:49 pm
Contact:

Re: Maintaining Hardware / fesability of keeping hardware running

Unread postby GRudolf94 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 2:29 pm

I was thinking about this, and, in this thinking, I came to conclude the lack of documentation is a major roadblock in mantaining obsolete systems. Sure, one can poke and probe and maybe eventually trace a fault. But sometimes, without docs, you're lost and hopeless. Shamefully, SiliconGraphics systems are scarcely documented.

Simple parts and boards can be fabbed, and new prototyping technologies are taking that further, however, we have not a chance of replicating the functionality of custom ASICs that weren't documented, even less so if the subsystem in which they're integrated is also a black box. Big multilayer PCBs are also still beyond reach of the poor hobbyist, so too bad for us.
:Indy: Indy R5000, 256MB, XL-24, IndyCam
:Indigo2: Impact10K 195MHz in teal case with purple bottom, missing several bits, awaiting completion
misc: Some Sun stuff, lots of x86 crap, one MSX and a MSX2+, a ZX Spectrum clone, slotloader 400MHz iMac G3


Return to “SGI: Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], uunix and 2 guests