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04 November 2009 @ 03:49 pm
Meanwhile, on the work front....  
I'm tempted to claim the quantity of write-up I did for a code-review package yesterday as "actual writing." I've been wrangling with cleaning up this single file for 2 1/2 weeks (half the work is documenting the review stuff), after two additional engineers messed around in it AND it went from supporting 2 somewhat-similar ASICs to now needing to support 4. Our internal ASIC team doesn't seem to "get" the idea that having a totally different register-addressing scheme for the same feature on 4 in-family ASICs (plus, four different implementations of it, in four different parts of the ASIC!) chews up major software coding and testing time.

And although you're supposed to use the existing "style" of any code you modify, one engineer invented his own commenting format, and the other decided to duplicate all the functions for the new ASIC rather than streamlining the code. :\

Monday, we got a "SMOKE-O-GRAM" email from an engineer working on bringing up new hardware. I read it to HalfshellHusband, who claimed it made no sense at all, but in fact... the warning was basically, "I'm checking in code that turns on a new power-intensive feature on your hardware, so don't download it unless you've had your board modified or your hardware's gonna scorch!" Whoo-hoo!Nothing like a little in-office fire to liven things up. \o/

I got back from my bike ride just now to find new "promotional material" on my chair for our current marketing campaign. It includes a plastic flag, which I've mounted in my cubicle, but my GOD this thing stinks-- like a combination of plastic and diesel. P.U. Customers will love that, I'm sure. :0

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brigid_tannerbrigid_tanner on November 5th, 2009 02:31 am (UTC)
No idea what ASIC is, but it sounds incredibly frustrating when people won't do what they should do. Don't try to explain it to me. Too tired to follow much today ;0 In-office fire is always fun! I had a centrifuge catch on fire once. Or at least start smoking heavily. With all the STAT samples the ER had just sent inside it. Got them out okay, and we had a back-up centrifuge, but it was interesting for a bit. LOL!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: IronManhalfshellvenus on November 5th, 2009 07:59 am (UTC)
ASICs are logic chips, and in this case the different "families" of them provide a succession of newer/better features as time goes on. They get put into hardware sub-modules, so people can upgrade their functionality without replacing the entire product.

Hope that wasn't complete gobbledygood. ;)

Oh boy-- do you work in a lab? I can imagine smoke causing quite a sensation there!

Funny, about an hour after I posted this entry I could swear I smelled a hint of smoke from across the cubicle wall (where the hardware-bringup area is). There was enough of it to temporarily drown out the stink of that plastic promo flag. :0