Fun_People Archive
19 Jul
From u.washington's grad school brochure

Date: Wed, 19 Jul 95 18:51:44 -0700
From: Peter Langston <psl>
To: Fun_People
Subject: From u.washington's grad school brochure

Forwarded-by: bostic@CS.Berkeley.EDU (Keith Bostic)
Forwarded-by: glen mccready <>
Forwarded-by: Timothy Newsham <>

Currently, his principal research project involves the construction and
programming of a vaguely parallel computer, consisting of 32 steam-powered
Turing machines installed in the basement of Sieg Hall.  Of particular
interest is the use of triple-expansion bypass valves, coupled to invididual
governors on each engine, to achieve write-synchronization of the machines.
Graduate students have played an important role in the construction of the
engine, particularly in stoking the boilers, and advanced undergraduates
are occasionally allowed to polish the brass guages.

Originally intended as a general computing engine, restrictions imposed by
the Pollution Control and Noise Abatement Boards require that only
algorithms running in polynomial time may be used.  The project recently
suffered another setback when on of Professor Ruzo's graduate students
slipped on a mouldering stack of ungraded homework exercises and fell under
the write head of one of the machines.  Now permanmently embossed with a
series of 1's and 0's, the student is suing to have the machine dismantled.

[=] © 1995 Peter Langston []