Doing more with less? (2 Jun, 2021)

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Doing more with less? (2 Jun, 2021)

Postby aardvark_admin » Wed Jun 02, 2021 6:54 am

This column is archived at: https://aardvark.co.nz/daily/2021/0602.shtml

Who remembers spending inordinate amounts of time trying to squeeze a quart (their program code) into a pint pot (the available RAM)?

Did you ever use languages that relied on overlays to mitigate the limited amount of RAM available in those early systems?

When was the last time you wrote code that had to be optimised for speed -- rather than simply using a more powerful computer if performance wasn't to the required level?

Is optimisation a lost-art, given that CPU power still follows Moore's law and processor power seems to know no limits?
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Re: Doing more with less? (2 Jun, 2021)

Postby hagfish » Wed Jun 02, 2021 12:34 pm

I've 'constructed' a large factory simulator, and it's running on a relatively weak PC. The code attempts to update every entity in the game 60 times a second. This means each update has to complete within 16.67ms, or the game-time has to slow down. Early in the game, I was optimising my systems to make the best use of in-game resources, but now I'm having to optimise for 'updates per second'. A >4.5GHz processor and some DDR4-3600 RAM would solve the problem, but so does an elegantly-signalled train network.
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