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Re: Competition

On 08/26/2011 11:47 PM, Scrap Happy wrote:
True. My supervisor mainly cares about the results. He doesn't care much
what software I use to analyze my data or create my plots as long as it
works (I use a Perl script to do the analysis and pipe the results to

That sounds unusually tolerant. Are you living in Academia, perchance?

Yup, academia. Astrophysics to be exact. I am a grad student interested in theoretical work, and especially computer simulations. Right now I'm studying rocky planets like Earth and how likely they are to stay in a nice stable orbit when the gas giants go bezerk.

Earlier I worked for a small company making web applications. Again, I had a lot of freedom as long as the apps ran fine in all browsers. So I haven't had the experience of truly having to integrate tools the way you do.

If I draft a schematic, I have to ensure that the PCB layout tool
can *read* that schematic. The output (photoplot) from the PCB tool
has to be comprehensible to the PCB fabricator. The part list from
the schematic tool has to be compatible with the MRP system the
client has in place. etc.

It is rare that something will exist in isolation, for me (even
paper documents need to be transported to print shops, posted on
web pages, etc. -- this affects the fonts used, document format,

I see. Yeah, that's worlds apart from the things I do. With your work everything has to fit perfectly or else the work is useless.

Yes. For example, any "pro bono" work that I do (typically, 500-1000
hours annually) -- where *I* have exclusive control of how things are
done -- tends to gravitate towards FOSS. It places no demands on those
that will eventually have to maintain my work later (by contrast, if I
had to take a commercial tool and ensure its continued availability at
some future date, then I -- or someone else -- has to ante up the money
to purchase that license...)

And, it (hopefully) entices that future maintainer to look into
something (FOSS) that he/she might not otherwise have done (since
it is a lot easier to maintain an existing system with its existing
toolchain than to risk porting the whole thing to a different
toolchain -- esp when that existing toolchain is "free"!)

Very interesting.

I'm not overweight, I'm undertall.

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