Comment On The Proven Fix

There are lots of ways to ruin a batch of steel. [expand full text]
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Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:03 • by mrtortoise (unregistered)
in first

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:09 • by Crash Magnet (unregistered)
293558 in reply to 293556
mrtortoise:
in first


But I'm first, I can prove it!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:10 • by Bosshog (unregistered)
There must be a bug in mathematics!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:10 • by frits (unregistered)
I never thought I'd see the day when a PHD would act arrogantly and be so disconnected from the real world.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:13 • by bored (unregistered)
293561 in reply to 293560
Agreed, good riddance. I knew something was amiss when they said Dog the Bounty Hunter ;)

captcha: ingenium != Vijay!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:14 • by RayMarron
Perhaps not coincidently[sic], all of the money-making products were developed and maintained by people without advanced degrees.
Word.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:16 • by Robert Kosten (unregistered)
"Beware of bugs in the above code; I have only proved it correct, not tried it." - Donald Knuth, Notes on the van Emde Boas construction of priority deques: An instructive use of recursion

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:16 • by dkf
It's hard to make proofs mean jack shit when they hit reality. Speaking as someone who has an advanced degree and does real software engineering. Of course, it's not impossible (I know some people who work in the area of railway signaling systems) but it's expensive and difficult. Only with safety critical work does it really become worth it. For mortals, it's usually better to use the proofs to establish completeness of coverage of the automatic test suite. (Without tests? You're not a software engineer, you're a cowboy code monkey.)

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:20 • by Rodnas (unregistered)
Well, it proves that reality has got it wrong again.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:23 • by spxza
I was secretly hoping that the patch would make it into production.

Damn the man and his stupid simulator.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:27 • by Alargule (unregistered)
293567 in reply to 293565
Rodnas:
Well, it proves that reality has got it wrong again.


I reject reality and substitute my own...arrogance!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:27 • by NotAphD (unregistered)
you lost me when you had the Computer Science phD wearing J Crew.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:28 • by SR (unregistered)
293569 in reply to 293560
frits:
I never thought I'd see the day when a PHD would act arrogantly and be so disconnected from the real world.


[applauds] Frits, you win sarcasm!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:29 • by anon (unregistered)
I used to work with a chap who, when asked to fix a problem, would say that he'd tested each part of the process and proved they were all working fine. That left just one possibility - there was no problem! Except there was...
Spock was quoted at him regularly.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:30 • by anon (unregistered)
293571 in reply to 293569
SR:
frits:
I never thought I'd see the day when a PHD would act arrogantly and be so disconnected from the real world.


[applauds] Frits, you win sarcasm!


And well done ST for spotting it!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:31 • by Kris Leech (unregistered)
This is the best WTF yet! Made me laugh.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:34 • by justsomedude (unregistered)
In theory there is no difference between practice and theory, but in practice there sure as hell is!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:35 • by justsomedude (unregistered)
In theory there is no difference between practice and theory, but in practice there sure as hell is!

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:38 • by fourchan
I think this is the third steel mill article. I wonder if it's a product of anonymization or if steel mills are actually such WTFy places.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:38 • by brazzy
Even when steel prices were highest, 150 tons of steel were worth MUCH less than "millions of dollars" (more like 20,000) - heck, even stuff that might be made from 150 tons of steel and includes a lot of energy and labot costs (e.g. a ship's engine) only has low 6 figure prices AFAIK.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:41 • by aristos_achaion (unregistered)
Evidently, someone has forgotten how easy it is to screw up a proof.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:42 • by dkf
293578 in reply to 293576
brazzy:
Even when steel prices were highest, 150 tons of steel were worth MUCH less than "millions of dollars" (more like 20,000) - heck, even stuff that might be made from 150 tons of steel and includes a lot of energy and labot costs (e.g. a ship's engine) only has low 6 figure prices AFAIK.
If the mix causes (unusual levels of) damage to the mill though, that's when you've got the big costs.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:45 • by SR (unregistered)
293579 in reply to 293576
brazzy:
Even when steel prices were highest, 150 tons of steel were worth MUCH less than "millions of dollars" (more like 20,000) - heck, even stuff that might be made from 150 tons of steel and includes a lot of energy and labot costs (e.g. a ship's engine) only has low 6 figure prices AFAIK.


But if you throw in steel mill equipment* that presumably Vijay was also endangering you'd have that extra zero.

* yes I know the article didn't specifically say that but let's not split hairs**
** yes I know TDWTF's comments section is the last place I should be appealing not to split hairs

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 09:47 • by Dan (unregistered)
He must have trained under one of Dijkstra's disciples. I took a CS course from a professor who was one of Dijkstra's former grad students. It was marked by that famous Dijkstra arrogance, a love of algorithm proofs, and the inability of the professor to code his way out of a wet paper sack.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:00 • by NightDweller
First of all - brillant!
From now on i am going to remove all my unit tests and replace them with comments detailing the proof of how the system is sure to work correctly!

Second, what is going on with tdwtf website?
it was down yesterday and its been malfunctioning today.
Upgrades? bug fixes? did someone forget the "if it's working don't fix it" rule?

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:00 • by bencoder (unregistered)
293583 in reply to 293575
fourchan:
I think this is the third steel mill article. I wonder if it's a product of anonymization or if steel mills are actually such WTFy places.


Heard of Simulated Annealing?

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:01 • by hjd (unregistered)
293584 in reply to 293575
fourchan:
I think this is the third steel mill article. I wonder if it's a product of anonymization or if steel mills are actually such WTFy places.


according to The Simpsons, steel mills are full of flamboyant gay guys... This could lead us to the following conclusions:

* The contributors of TDWTF are working in steel mills
* The articles on TDWTF are adapted to their readers
* There is a correlation between hot places and gaping (security) holes
* The steel industry is more interested in hardware than software

I'm just going with the flow and changing the subject to pickuplines used by steel industry programmers:

* You're code looks hawt!
* I like my permissions strict
* Is that a stacktrace or are you just glad to see me?
* Does your party() #include <margaritas.h>?

I'll stop now...

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:04 • by Jack Frots (unregistered)
293585 in reply to 293563
Robert Kosten:
"Beware of bugs in the above code; I have only proved it correct, not tried it." - Donald Knuth, Notes on the van Emde Boas construction of priority deques: An instructive use of recursion

Well, apparently Knuth is a dunce, because Vijay's work doesn't need trying, only proof.

captcha: uxor. Latin for "wife". My wife proves over and over that I'm an idiot, but I keep trying...

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:06 • by fw (unregistered)
the real WTF is that every line in today's article makes sense.

ideo campers.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:12 • by vtcodger (unregistered)
293587 in reply to 293580
***He must have trained under one of Dijkstra's disciples. I took a CS course from a professor who was one of Dijkstra's former grad students. It was marked by that famous Dijkstra arrogance, a love of algorithm proofs, and the inability of the professor to code his way out of a wet paper sack.***

Having once been treated to the dubious pleasure of listening to Dijkstra himself droning on and on about some subject far beyond my understanding (and I suspect perhaps his as well), I think I know where you are coming from. "Limited contact area with reality" was my thought at the time.

However, I have since come to think the "GOTOs Considered Harmful" was about the difficulty/impossibility of understanding/testing software with significant numbers of poorly constrained control transfers. You know ... software like modern GUIs. The stuff that never seems to work quite right. Maybe I didn't give the old guy sufficient credit.

(Which is not to say that I would ever have released a patch received from anyone based only on a formal proof).

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:20 • by Gumpy Gus (unregistered)
293588 in reply to 293556
So he proved the rest of the program, the compiler, the run-time libraryies, all the device drivers, and the OS were correct?


Wow, that's quite a guy.


And, oh, did he prove that his proof was correct? And did he prove that his proof check was correct? ....


Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:21 • by monkeyPushButton (unregistered)
293589 in reply to 293579
SR:
brazzy:
Even when steel prices were highest, 150 tons of steel were worth MUCH less than "millions of dollars" (more like 20,000) - heck, even stuff that might be made from 150 tons of steel and includes a lot of energy and labot costs (e.g. a ship's engine) only has low 6 figure prices AFAIK.
But if you throw in steel mill equipment* that presumably Vijay was also endangering you'd have that extra zero.

* yes I know the article didn't specifically say that but let's not split hairs**
** yes I know TDWTF's comments section is the last place I should be appealing not to split hairs
Don't know much about steel mills, but with molten glass, problems with temperature can cause a loss of more than just the material at the wrong temperature. Having to jackhammer out a tank of solidified (but still several hundred degree) glass is long, hot work that keeps the plant down but everyone busy (and getting paid overtime).

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:21 • by Ken B (unregistered)
293590 in reply to 293581
NightDweller:
Second, what is going on with tdwtf website?
it was down yesterday and its been malfunctioning today.
Upgrades? bug fixes? did someone forget the "if it's working don't fix it" rule?
But it is working! For the proof, go to prooftp://thedailyftf.com/itsworking.nyah

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:21 • by Brandon (unregistered)
293591 in reply to 293575
fourchan:
I think this is the third steel mill article. I wonder if it's a product of anonymization or if steel mills are actually such WTFy places.


Probably the same place that has their furnaces shut down because thousands of tons of coal end up on Pier 53.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:25 • by WhiskeyJack
Actually, I get pretty annoyed too when I've proven that my fix works, and then it doesn't.

Not so much that I'd leave, though. Otherwise I'd have only been on the job for about a week.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:27 • by Steve H (unregistered)
293593 in reply to 293586
fw:
the real WTF is that every line in today's article makes sense.


Not if you live outside the US. Coffee club? J Crew? Dog the what?

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:33 • by SenTree
293594 in reply to 293575
fourchan:
I think this is the third steel mill article. I wonder if it's a product of anonymization or if steel mills are actually such WTFy places.
We recently had a contractor with some steel industry experience. One of his milder anecdotes involved the plant control automation sharing the same network as the office IT. Others included fatalities of the 'flesh and molten steel' don't mix variety (that batch had a higher carbon content than usual...).

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:35 • by Ken B (unregistered)
293595 in reply to 293589
monkeyPushButton:
Don't know much about steel mills, but with molten glass, problems with temperature can cause a loss of more than just the material at the wrong temperature. Having to jackhammer out a tank of solidified (but still several hundred degree) glass is long, hot work that keeps the plant down but everyone busy (and getting paid overtime).
I know someone whose family runs a plastic bag manufacturing plant. (All sorts of widths, lengths, thicknesses, etc.) They get raw materials in by the trainload. (Literally. They hook up the car to some hoses, which feed directly into the production process.)

If something goes wrong, and they need to stop the production line, they lose everything that was already being processed, and they need to re-prime everything once things start up again. I was told that a problem on one production line would cost $10,000 in lost materials alone.

Okay, so plastics manufacturing and steel mills aren't the same thing. The point is there is often more lost than the one "oopsie".

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:37 • by grammer nasty (unregistered)
TRWTF is that American, which often seems logically to simplify English, uses "proven" so often, when "proved" is perfectly good enough and more logical. "Proven" should be kept as an adjective...

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:39 • by Seminymous Coward (unregistered)
It's not a proof until a couple of hard, pipe-hittin' professors got to work on it with a pair of pliers and a blow torch... or pencils, I forget which.

Seriously, y'all are going to unanimously go with "proofs are stupid?" A real proof is a guarantee of correctness. TRWTF is abuse of the word "proof." Even an idiot can say they have a proof.

Also, if y'all have that much difficulty getting your theory to match real data accurately, your model is what sucks, not the idea of modeling.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:44 • by Big G (unregistered)
293598 in reply to 293593
Steve H:
fw:
the real WTF is that every line in today's article makes sense.


Not if you live outside the US. Coffee club? J Crew? Dog the what?



Good point. The coffee club is an employee who provides (as in buys the coffee and runs the coffee maker) coffee to his/her co-workers at cost (typically $0.25/cup aka a quarter for a cup).

In case your Google isn't working:
J Crew: Clothing for yuppies.

Dog the Bounty Hunter In the US if someone does not appear in court they are typically tracked down by a bounty hunter who works for the bail bondsman who floated a loan to bail someone out of jail while they are awaiting trial. Dog is known for um, interesting clothing/hairstyles. Definitely worth looking up a photo if nothing else.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 10:55 • by DaveyDaveDave
293599 in reply to 293594
SenTree:
fourchan:
I think this is the third steel mill article. I wonder if it's a product of anonymization or if steel mills are actually such WTFy places.
We recently had a contractor with some steel industry experience. One of his milder anecdotes involved the plant control automation sharing the same network as the office IT. Others included fatalities of the 'flesh and molten steel' don't mix variety (that batch had a higher carbon content than usual...).


Heh - I have a network admin friend who was employed at the same (I hope there isn't more than one) steel mill, to replace one of the guys who went to prison for criminal negligence, or some such charge.

He had an anecdote about how his predecessor had bought a large batch of network cards from a rather questionable source. After some time, when several of them had been used to replace faulty cards at various disparate locations around the network, it was discovered that they all had the same MAC address. Hilarity ensued.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:00 • by Zylon
293600 in reply to 293570
anon:
I used to work with a chap who, when asked to fix a problem, would say that he'd tested each part of the process and proved they were all working fine. That left just one possibility - there was no problem! Except there was...
Spock was quoted at him regularly.

I'm going to assume the Spock quote you're referring to is "When all logical possibilities have been eliminated, whatever remains - however unlikely - must be the truth.", from The Undiscovered Country. Except, this is a Sherlock Holmes quote, which Spock was himself quoting.

You fail at culture.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:04 • by RBoy (unregistered)
293601 in reply to 293558
Crash Magnet:
mrtortoise:
in first


But I'm first, I can prove it!



Best First Ever!*

* today

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:08 • by Mike (unregistered)
This is why I didn't start my Master's degree until I'd been working for a while. Theory and application are such different beasts and you are better if you understand application better than theory rather than the opposite...

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:08 • by iToad (unregistered)
For some people, when their model of reality disagrees with reality, then reality is wrong.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:09 • by hoodaticus
293605 in reply to 293569
SR:
frits:
I never thought I'd see the day when a PHD would act arrogantly and be so disconnected from the real world.


[applauds] Frits, you win sarcasm!


Frits always wins sarcasm.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:11 • by hoodaticus
293606 in reply to 293597
Seminymous Coward:
TRWTF is abuse of the word "proof." Even an idiot can say they have a proof.


This.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:12 • by dkf
293607 in reply to 293597
Seminymous Coward:
Seriously, y'all are going to unanimously go with "proofs are stupid?" A real proof is a guarantee of correctness. TRWTF is abuse of the word "proof." Even an idiot can say they have a proof.
Well, you see, to do this you throw some equations together and blend (with coffee to lubricate) until you feel in your gut that it has appropriate proofiness.

Re: The Proven Fix

2009-12-17 11:17 • by cdosrun
293611 in reply to 293598
Big G:

In case your Google isn't working:
J Crew: Clothing for yuppies.


I'm not sure "yuppies" will translate either. :-)

Yuppies traditionally care more about appearance than function. Clothing for yuppies would, stereotypically, be expensive, poorly made, not last very long, and show the Logo of the designer prominently.

I don't own any J Crew, nor am I familiar with the name, but that's the typical view of the "Yuppie" from my own culture.
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