[petsc-dev] How long?

Matthew Knepley knepley at gmail.com
Tue Mar 12 06:19:03 CDT 2019

On Tue, Mar 12, 2019 at 12:34 AM Smith, Barry F. via petsc-dev <
petsc-dev at mcs.anl.gov> wrote:

>    I think it is totally insane that the entire Linux kernel is
> implemented in C in 2019. Probably only 5 percent of the source needs to be
> implemented in a low level language like C and the rest could be written in
> a higher level language for enormous improvement in maintainability and
> extensibility.

I am not sure. I have a sizable code (PyLith) written in a mixture of C and
Python for exactly this reason. It is impossible to debug, which counts
against maintainabiltiy for me. If your C layer is anything but perfect,
you have problems. This would be even harder in a language farther from C
than Python. Also, C is pretty extensible. Much more so than most
languages. If I thought I would save myself tons of time, I would change.
However, anything I have ever tried faltered just when you want it to start
working for you.


> Similarly it is insane that the GNU portion of Linux/GNU is written in C
> instead of a higher level language.
>    Barry
>   And yes Linux is not very extendable. It is just a rewrite of a 40+ year
> old OS (yes with some improvements and extensions, I'll give you that).
> > On Mar 11, 2019, at 11:14 PM, Zhang, Hong <hongzhang at anl.gov> wrote:
> >
> > Is linux kernel maintainable and extendable? Does anyone want to
> reimplement linux in Julia?
> >
> > Hong (Mr.)
> >
> >> On Mar 11, 2019, at 9:28 PM, Smith, Barry F. via petsc-dev <
> petsc-dev at mcs.anl.gov> wrote:
> >>
> >>
> >>  PETSc source code is becoming an unmaintainable, unextendable
> monstrosity. How long until Julia is mature enough that we can
> (re)implement PETSc in it?
> >>
> >>  Barry
> >>
> >

What most experimenters take for granted before they begin their
experiments is infinitely more interesting than any results to which their
experiments lead.
-- Norbert Wiener

https://www.cse.buffalo.edu/~knepley/ <http://www.cse.buffalo.edu/~knepley/>
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