[ExI] The tyranny of context free grammars
rtomek at ceti.pl
Wed Dec 15 18:04:53 UTC 2010
On Tue, 7 Dec 2010, Alan Grimes wrote:
> Ryan Rawson wrote:
> > was merely pointing out the downfall of a context-ful grammar, since
> > the original poster makes it seem like "if only we shed the shackles
> > of CFGs we'd be better for it". There is a dark side of that though,
> > and perl is one of them... I've written a few thousand lines of perl,
> > it's great for hacking things out, but trying to re-discover what you
> > coded a few weeks/months/years ago can be... difficult.
> Not quite.
Let's say there is strong human factor in this - some people so much
dislike Perl that they have to relearn it every time they have a caprice
to "try it once more" (I seem to fall into this category).
> I was pointing out that the paradigm of the chomsky heirarchy is
> limiting in that it has failed to provide us with the tools we need to
> design software for CAM architectures which would seem to enable, with
> today's technology, several orders of magnitude more performance per
> transistor than is possible with von-neuman machines because millions of
> bits could be computed per clock cycle instead of a few thousand...
> Of course there could be problems with the idea of the cellular automata
> as being an optimal computing architecture. In any event, computronium
> is not just a fabrication issue, it's also a computer science issue.
While von Neumann architecture is not perfect, I think it was the easiest
__usable__ thing to be built in the past and it will continue to be such
in the quite a long future. Thanks to increasing performance, one can
research, emulate, and maybe find, a better computing architecture. After
emulation of the concept proves to be good, one can design
"transistor-level" implementation (VHDL or whatever is suitable for ASIC
synthesis) and submit it to manufacturer specialising in ASIC
custom-building. Or one can push this low-level design into FPGA.
I'm not sure cellular automata is better alternative for v-N. I guess it
is one of the easiest to fabricate, but programming it is, IMHO, tricky in
best case. And I don't want to think about debugging it. I may yet learn
the opposite after reading Wolfram's "New Kind of Science" but I don't
expect this much, even though I expect quite a lot :-).
Anyway, I may change my thinking when I see Linux ported to CA-CPU :-).
Before this happens, CAs are probably going to be confined to coprocessors
and other such helper hardware. And to be frank, I would rather invest my
time in something else, even though ATM I am not quite sure what exactly
(the subject is broad and needs a lot of exploring).
** A C programmer asked whether computer had Buddha's nature. **
** As the answer, master did "rm -rif" on the programmer's home **
** directory. And then the C programmer became enlightened... **
** Tomasz Rola mailto:tomasz_rola at bigfoot.com **
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