If the universe as a whole can be considered as a computational fabric on which matter is organized to allow for computations to be efficiently done (cf Beliefs#B1), then the choice of which to conduct is of fundamental importance.

Those political decisions can be partly witnessed in the history of large computations at the scale of nations (hence the dedicated section on this page) but also through individual decision leveraged by the private sector, typically 2-sided market as explained in InformationRules (still to develop).

Overall allocation of resources is strategical and have fundamental social implication. Computation, despite the famous adage that "knowledge is power", have rarely so far been considered as a resource per se, yet it might be one of the most important one around which others revolve.

This should be use as a part of ways to be politically more efficient, e.g. with VotingIsALearningProcess.


  • patterns
    • mostly only information about the technical specification of the supercomputers but hardly about the computations they ran
    • pushing structured matter around (final product)
    • pushing information to locally build the final product around
    • pre-computations, distributed computation, ...
    • handling increasingly large datasets (thus endless race)
      • e.g. manipulating no genome then 1 genome with difficulty then currently doing work with hundreds or whole taxa
    • economy of scale, specialization/standardization/distribution
  • at the political level, who decides how supercomputers will be allocated?
    • how does the hierarchy influences such choices?
    • how does the underlying ideology influences such choices?
  • publicly funded classics
    • weather
    • high energy with no foreseeable exploitation means
    • cosmological simulations
    • defense
      • note that Agnotology could help distinguish a pattern from the history of declassification
  • private sector classics
    • energy e.g. drilling simulation for B.P., ...
    • finance e.g. JP Morgan
    • mass end-user information e.g. Google, Facebook, ...
  • large computations
  • military battle
    • what was computed before? what outcome did it result it?
      • map, estimation of enemy resource, ...
  • note that the energy required to run might not be the most important, cf WithoutNotesSeptember11#WatsonEnergyConsumptionEstimate which would seem to show that it is actually potentially negligible!

Financing such a study

  • How many "rich" history inclined geeks Financial#crowdfunding principle to the point of donating?
  • potential bonus for helpers
    • shipped paper copy from
    • shipped poster of a summing-up infographic
    • dedicated visit of a significant place (e.g. Computer History Museum)

Inspired by

See also