Monthly Archives: October 2013

The Art of Extremely Inefficient Self-Benchmarking

factoring_the_time

On one cold night not too long ago, as I pondered my upcoming PC build (a build that I’ve been dreaming planning to do for the past 2 years, and has yet to happen, and inevitably wont for the foreseeable future) I wondered whether I could create my own benchmark. And to keep it simple, one targeted primarily for CPU usage.

I thought of a few ways to test my aging CPU’s little remaining mettle (for reference it’s a Core 2 Duo E6600. And yes, I know… it sucks). But without getting too much memory or HDD I/O activity involved, I eventually decided on the ever reliable prime numbers. “Easy enough” I thought to myself, shouldn’t be more than a few lines of code.

And surprisingly, for once, I was right.

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Visual Pains In the Year 2012

compiling

“I’m starting to think they’re catching on to us guys…”

I like Visual Studio 2012, I really do. But deep down inside, somewhere, I also really don’t like it.

When VS2012 was released I was eager to explore and experiment its inner depths. Compelling additions to the .NET Framework 4.5, improvements to semantic colourization (slowly catching up to XCode), and an actual editing environment for shaders in HLSL – they were all so, so tempting. But even with all that, even with all the squeaky IDE goodness that would’ve made my programming life far more easy and awesome, I simply couldn’t get passed that UI. I couldn’t. I tried, but I couldn’t. Why is everything monochrome? Why are the new icons small and difficult to spot (without colours they all practically look alike)? And, for some bizarre reason, why are all the menus UPPERCASE?

According to Andrew Binstock in his review of Visual Studio 2012:

Speaking off the record, a Microsoft employee with the Windows 8 team confessed that the Metro team was “very surprised” when they saw how the Visual Studio team had interpreted the Metro guidelines.

So letting that quote sink in, and without risking taking this post any further into rant-land, I shall explain what it is I did to heal myself of any further eye-related injury.

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