matt martin

the programmer tells you three rules so your code can be fast enough for h.f.t.      “do not touch the kernel        do not touch main memory      don’t branch”      any of those crimes will slow a computer’s running of its operations in parallel      if you wanted to make h.f.t. slow enough for human minds to follow      you’d need a text branching from page to page in baroque ‘if then’ loops      you’d need to reach elbow-deep into memory’s morally grey matter and squeeze it until it cried meaningfully      you’d have to plant a kernel beneath london’s financial centre then wait for coiling growth to push upwards through pavements and topple the corporate towers      to attempt such branching would be madness      instead your trading activities shine along unimaginably straight cable that runs on for hundreds of miles underground      you can’t detect light because you have become light      but if eyes could operate down here they might wish they couldn’t when faced with horizonless distance      a tunnel two feet wide was bored through a mountain range’s base to accommodate this fibre-optic route    the owner of an ice cream parlour was paid millions to let it pass beneath the yard behind his shop      a bridge was built over an estuary with no purpose but to hold this pipeline level      no traffic allowed on the crossing in case vibrations should skew a photon from its path      no refraction      no distraction      your trading speed now approaches that of light      the one way to increase your advantage is to change the laws of physics      how might this be done

     •    take physics to court and force it to lift its restrictions
     •    fund research into transmission routes that don’t require passage through space