SMR Update

The SMR versions of the freelist, queue (unbounded many many) and stack now compile.

I have to make tests for them now, from the non-SMR test code – that’s quite a lot of work.

I’m going to make a benchmark for the freelist first, I really want to see how much impact SMR has.

The way I’ve implemented SMR involved one CAS per operation, which is a lot of work. The freelist however now only needs CAS, not DWCAS, so that gives a 50% or so performance improvement. So we’re now two CAS rather than one DWCAS – but we also have the overhead of the SMR clean/release work.

I also need to fix the freelist – which is to say, make the elimination layer perform as I think it should, rather than how it is!


Currently adding back in the SMR versions of freelist, queue (unbounded, many, many) and stack.

An observation by a colleague regarding IA64 made me realised that the IA64 instruction which compares one word but swaps two is enough for the data structures which require contious double-word compare-and-swap. You simply compare the counter. I’ll be making the necessary changes to support this. It is unfortunate this comes after IA64 has basically died!

Always provide an email address with your contact form

Advice to web-site developers.

If you are going to provide a form for people to contact you, always also provide an email address, because – believe it or not – YOU MAY IN FACT HAVE FUCKED UP THE FORM. In fact, most of you have. I speak from experience.

I have this site -> -> currently in mind.

I’ve spent the last fucking twenty minutes filling in that fucking form again and again. It works about 50% of the time. I’m actually trying to pay, and I can’t, because their site thinks my Dutch and Italian IBANs are invalid. So I used the form – hit submit – it clears. No message on screen, no email, nothing.

So I send them a message to suggest they do provide some feedback on successful submission, because most on-line forms are broken, so I more or less have to assume their form is broken too, and my question was not sent.

This time – lo and behold – there’s a send confirmation.

Fucks sake. I need to pay now, so I can get to the gym. I do not need a couple of fucking days delay while I eventually figure out their fucking form is broken.

Then I discover there’s a silent character limit on the question text. You find out because you can’t type any more. Fucking idiots, time two. First for the limit, second for letting people waste their fucking time typing a meaningful message to discover it. ANYONE who does this need a fucking brain surgeon – to repair the lobotomy they clearly already had.

Using to select manufacturers when buying a product

I’ve just ordered a little switch, to go with the wireless router.

What I came to pick a switch, I was as is usual overwhelmed – there are so many products, so many manufacturers, how do you choose?

Normally I google for reviews, read a bunch, and that way come to make a choice – although often I find the product I want is very hard to find. Just seems to work out that way.

However, this time, I hit upon a new method; I started using to look up the employee review scores for the given company. I figure in general the happier employees are, the better run the company, and the better the product.

Turns out a LOT of the ethernet switch manufacturers have really bad scores – glassdoor rates out of 5.0, and most were 2.x – which is really *not* good. Cisco were the best, at 3.8 out of 5.0. So I looked into their product range, and found a very suitable product – very small, physically, lightweight, five ports, dead cheap – like 25 euro. Absolutely perfect.

Amazon rule because everyone else sucks at order forms

I hate, I mean I *REALLY* hate, ordering on-line.

I have just spent 15 very tedious minutes filling in form after form, looking up address after address, card details, fake phone number (mandatory field for something I don’t have, remember to remove all spaces because half the time forms object to spaces – which you only find out when you submit), replace the “ß” in the street name with “ss” because no clue if they support unicode, checking data entered, *guessing* I should use my USD card because it isn’t clear yet what Paypal will actually bill me in – I need to enter all the addresses to find this out, and if I’m wrong, go back to square one – etc, etc, etc – only to be taken to Paypal, where I had to enter the card address again, AND THEN FOUND THE SHIPPING ADDRESS WAS BROKEN BECAUSE IT NOW OMITTED THE COMPANY NAME. My name and my workplace address are not enough, because there are a ton of companies in the building. Paypal has no option to edit the shipping address.

So I had to abort, which brings me back to the very start – with all forms cleared.

This time, repeating the lot, I need to ensure I have the company name in the address field, in addition to the deadly misleading extra “company name” field.

This I have to say is par for the course. The main reason I order from Amazon whenever I can *is to avoid this problem*. Sadly, the product I want to order from Amazon is not shipped to Germany – so I have to order direct from the supplier.

Washing Machines


I have for many years now found washing machines problematic. This is a partial list of problems…

1. washing machine floods the kitchen sink, and so the kitchen
2. washing machine blocks, and so after filling, never drains (my dressing gown and towel were locked in there for a week)
3. washing machine has no “start” button, so you put stuff in, select the programme and temperature… …and nothing happens, so you take your stuff out (eventually – when the damn thing decides after some random but always long interval that you can now unlock the door, even though there is no water in there and never was any water in there)
4. washing machine runs, but does not use water

All I want in a washing machine is that it starts, uses water, and drains.

IS IT SO DIFFICULT?!?!?!?!?!?!


AirBnB in Berlin is a catastrophe. It’s completely impossible.

I have never had so many declines, and they all happen without any message. You select dates, ask if available, and get declined. No explanations.

I just tried to book a room – just now. I had a decline within a MINUTE. No explanation. I tried booking another place last night. Also declined, no explanation.

So, I have 14 our of 14 positive recommendations on my profile. I’m pretty sure I don’t smell. What gives? I have no idea – but I can see that AirBnB isn’t functioning.

Germans seem to have trouble with negotiation

So, I’ve been using AirBnB (spit, etc) to try to find a place in Berlin. It’s unlikely to work, city rent controls and direct anti-AirBnB legislation, but if it could, it’d be super useful.

So I’ve been trying.

What I’m finding is this : Germans (German culture, that is) seems to be totally unable to handle negotiation. If you *attempt* to negotiation, i.e. say anything which argues for a change in the deal, there is no response and the other party leaves.

They don’t talk, don’t say no, it’s just – you tried to negotiate, so the deal is off. They instantly stop responding and close down any open booking.

This is wholly and utterly different to every other country – and that’s a few now – where I’ve AirBnBed.

Word of warning re AirBnB exchange rates

AirBnB are doing the Ryanair trick – silently ripping people off on exchange rates.

On 1154 euro, my bank charges about 10 USD to convert to USD.

AirBnB are charging about 50 USD.

AFAICT it’s not optional (it is on Ryanair, so AirBnB are actually *worse*).