A Country of Which Nothing is Known but the Name.

If you came here via a search engine, you were probably looking for Pierre Cartier’s wonderful mini-biography of the mathematician Alexander Grothendieck – from which I shamelessly stole the title. Please go straight there. Otherwise… “And so no one, except for two people, enters the top floor of the Aedificium. …” The abbot smiled. “No […]

Don't Blame the Mice.

Your kitchen is alive with vermin! Who is to blame? The cruel forces of nature? Or, might it be you – the fellow who scattered delicious crumbs everywhere; spilled honey a thousand times without picking up a mop once; and kept a mountain of old newspapers around for rodents to chew into nest liner? Your […]

Bitcoin Adventures.

The Bitcoin Kill Switch is quite alive, well, and waiting to be pressed: “I can’t assure with 100% certainty that the all the black dots are owned by Satoshi, but almost all are owned by a single entity, and that entity began mining right from block 1, and with the same performance as the genesis […]

A Review of MPEx, the Bitcoin Stock Exchange.

“The most important thing a crook needs is an impeccable reputation.” (Attributed to Agatha Christie.) Bitcoin interests me as an obvious example of a technological jewel tossed around aimlessly by the brutal hands of cave men. I can’t help but picture a flashlight or a radio set, left behind in the wilderness by geologists, to […]

Bitcoin, or How to Hammer in Nails with a Microscope.

“The enlightened, disciplined mind is the holiest of holies, a wonder among wonders. Upon the Earth – a grain of sand in the Universe, man is on the order of one-billionth of the smallest magnitude… And yet this particle in your mind’s eye, that lives but for sixty or so trips of the Earth around […]

To Lend is the Right of an Owner - That is, Not You.

Three years ago, I predicted that publishers will inevitably declare war on book-lending: “Let’s pretend that a Nook book (or any similar DRM’d ebook) could be lent in exactly the same manner as a physical book: to whomever you like, whenever you like, for as long as you like – with the added benefit of […]

Engelbart's Violin

Computing pioneer Alan Kay tells us that a computer is “an instrument whose music is ideas.” This seems like a beautiful metaphor, until you realize that we have somehow ended up in a world where the profession of musician is nearly unknown.  To continue with this analogy, let’s imagine that you were a child who […]

May 2012 Update

At present, I have taken a break from the hardware aspects of Loper – to work on “Jupiter,” a Linux-based emulator of the system’s essential aspects.  (Think QEMU.) Jupiter is unlikely to be of any practical use to anyone but myself.  However, at some point, I will make it public, so that interested persons who […]

Posted in: Cold Air, Computation, Hot Air, LoperOS, Progress by Stanislav 9 Comments

The curious incident of the Lisp in the night-time

Gregory (Scotland Yard detective): “Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?” Holmes: “To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.” Gregory: “The dog did nothing in the night-time.” Holmes: “That was the curious incident.” – “Silver Blaze” (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle) Yesterday, I heard a lecture […]

Posted in: Distractions, Hot Air, Lisp, NonLoper by Stanislav 11 Comments

March 2012 Update

Loper’s I2C controller is working.  The SPD ROM on the DDR2 RAM stick attached to the Xilinx ML-501 board is read correctly.  The video controller is working (though not feature-complete.)  The DDR2 SDRAM controller is still under testing, as is the cache SRAM controller.  The gigabit Ethernet controller is not yet complete. I should probably […]