Last day of the trip. Going for breakfast to “Raw Power Cafe” on Vulcan street off Queen Street in Auckland. Nice place, good food, freshly prepared juice. Hail storms in the morning, but the weather clears up and pretty nice and sunny later throughout the day.

10:30 Stuart and I meet with Prof. James Goodman

Jim is a bit late for the meeting – the ferry from his home in Davenport was late and he got stuck a bit in a hailstorm. Hi starts by explaining about hardware architecture and that synchronisation mechanisms lie at the bottom of the problem. Jim explains briefly the various TM models and their relationship to the hardware and cache eviction and consistency models. The programmer tends to think about the world as if it stops for a while when the sequence of instructions is being executed. There are traditionally two approaches to this problem: locks/critical section, and transactions. Transactions can be hardware-based and software-based. The two streams of research are merging now. There are many limiting factors on the hardware side, one being the problem with the length of transaction (limited by the CPU L1/L2 cache capacity). Software does not have this limitations, but the performance penalty is high. (Results and speculations …)

The discussion goes on about the general scalable system programming and education in Computer Science in general. The only compiler person retired recently from the AUT, student numbers drop, and it is generally difficult to keep up withthe core CS courses. 1 PhD student currently working on TM models. References to Mark Moir (Wellington, stays few summer months a year in NZ).

Jim says: “Multicore [hardware] architectures are being pushed onto our throats whether we like it or not, and it would be a shame not to take the advantage of it. The revolution is happening.”

Inviting Jim for the PDCAT 2008 conference PDCAT.

12:30 Lunch-time meeting with Telecom R&D people

Discussing Swicki – and other community and social networking search engines. Discussing document search and reference to Waikato: Richard Nielson, prof, data mining, search, context based, commercialised products. TODO watch Nomads documentary. Discussion follows up on smart cards, Sun-Ray, Secondary schools, grid and cloud computing.

Important: follow on IPv6, with Brett Tefler.

Next generartion services, mobile services, communities, etc. John talks about the idea of facilitating 10-20 ppl meetings in virtual space, similar to video conferencing for brainstorming and working on something. Talking with John Eyles and Brett Tefler about the idea – need to email about Wonderland and possibility of getting 10-20 people for a short period of time to dicsus a really focused discussion about something.

16:30 Cofee-time meeting with iJump

Meeting with Simon and Marie. Nice couple. Currently 2 people, 8-9 writers. On the market for 9 months. Discussion about new media types, influence of new social networking applications and technologies on the way people make business and expose themselves to customers, how to gather feedback and how to manage the information. Simon and Marie were interested in the Otago social networking group and the activities that are going on. Also, they are doing some consulting about second life and Web3D so they are interested in NVWG initiatives.

2 responses to “Day 3/3, Auckland.”

  1. Nicolas says:

    Hi Mariusz,

    I read the three blogs with big interest, and will re read later again. However, want to point three-four comments/questions

    a- Would appreciate more details re your meeting at NZTE given that you mentioned that the MCore report was discussed. As I said yesterday, I see a lot of mixed expectations about the scope, and as I said on an email to Stuart/Martin last week, there is a limit on budget/time to do everything that could be done. The main challenge of the report is to say something meaningful for them/public, and at the same time operational and opening of new stages, something that will trigger new actions, which brings me to the next point:

    b- your notes from the digital conference are brilliant (bah, your notes are pretty much always very good, taking notes on the spot is a skill that I envy from you 😉 but the most important conclusion that I see from them is: decision makers, “leaders”, people close to the industry but not up to speed, and EVEN people AT the industry itself, aren’t understanding what’s going on. You said somewhere that xx has his mind 15 years behind time…

    Well, it’s not entirely THEIR fault, people react to reality in different timings, and you quote people that I’ve been listening (and asking and challenging) for 4 years already since the Digital Strategy was launched: everyone is following the facts at their own pace, and certain things will just be “thrown to their faces” once it is too late…

    But this is reality, a mix of different things, and we need to learn to live with it, and the learning experience involves a lot of frustration. You told me once that Facebook is a success because the guy understands what their users expect (90 million already), and give it to them. Well, Facebook IS A SUCCESS because no one else understands the users as well as them…and this is simple market reality, always someone is better in certain aspects than the rest…

    what I am trying to say (and hope that I am doing it without leading to misunderstandings), is that nothing will happen unless we learn to deal with all the involved stakeholders in NZ. Do you remember when we discussed at World45 how we have been “neglecting” NZ markets? It wasn’t a whim. It simply was a reality. I mean, we go where is people ready to listen, in the meantime people improve their knowledge and later become ready at “due time”…

    In the meantime, everyone goes ahead with “life as usual”…and this is real for technology and any other industry.

    c- The quote from J Goodman re MCore “revolution”. Yes it’s happening, yes it would be a shame to do not take advantage of it, but it would be even worse to do not do anything at all about it. And my feeling from this cold, isolated and dark corner in Oamaru is that the actions towards the revolution are more shifting towards an “evolution”, that the possibility of not just to catch the “train of the history” but even of building our OWN TRAIN or at least a good amount of wagons from the train, are not being reasonably considered.

    My only consolation is that the change is soooo huge, that there is still room for everyone, there is still time to jump on the train, and even if we will not have as much time to do new mistakes as a way to learn, we still have an opportunity to do something for/with IT-NZ.

    d- What J Goodman says about having talented CS students / lecturers is a trend happening everywhere. It happens in the US, it even happens in India. And even if you see the salary structures, IT managers are better paid in average than most of the jobs around. What I want to share with you is a comment that I heard at the PEAC meeting a few months ago at Otago Polytechnic about the same topic of lack of good numbers of IT students: “IT is not cool anymore”. “For a young person, to study IT is pretty much like study accounting”. In one way, this is good, because it means that IT is now PART of our daily activities…I remember that in my Academy, just TEN years ago, we instructed a lot of people about how to use….Internet Explorer…and send emails…and we did a very good business then. Would a business like this, be feasible today? So the evolution is positive from this perspective, the point is to keep growing it to the next level. Compare it with Mathematics: every century someone comes and says: all the major theorems and theories are already discovered and proven, why keep searching for something else…? A question that has been current for the last 3-4,000 years…

    Anyway, good to be thinking here, thanks


  2. Stuart says:

    The main comments from the NZTE meeting were as I emailed you the other day.
    NZTE are concerned to see chapter headings and subheadings, with some indication of the content for each of these parts. Of course, these should reflect the coherence of points 2 to 6 in the contract.
    The other point they are concerned about (and I think I missed this from last week’s email) is that capability in NZ will well covered.

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