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Mesquite Software Newsletter

Volume 10 - Summer 2009

Newsletter Contents
Introduction: Real World Things You Can't (or Shouldn't) Try to Simulate
CSIM 20 Now Available for Online Purchase
Special CSIM 20 Introductory Discount for CSIM Users
The Many Platforms of CSIM 20
CSIM for Java and CSIM 20 Student Editions - Now Available Online
Tech Tip: 64-Bit versus 32-Bit

Greetings, CSIM programmers,

We hope 2009 is treating you well so far, as it is us. We were recently reminded that as much as we love simulation, some things are better experienced in real-time with real objects. We had the pleasure of visiting the new California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, and what an amazing real-life experience that was! A new museum dedicated to "exploring, explaining and protecting the natural world," the Academy features an all-digital planetarium, a unique aquarium, a rainforest (that you can ride up and down through in an elevator), and even a penguin colony. If you like science, animals, and/or museums, we highly recommend it as a stop on your next trip to San Francisco.

Of course, good simulations can be a delight as well, and our newly-released CSIM versions can help make yours even better. Keep reading to learn more about CSIM 20 and the special discount we're offering to existing CSIM users...

Note: This newsletter, along with the full Tech Tip by Dr. Herb Schwetman, is available on our website at www.mesquite.com/newsletter/.

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CSIM 20 Now Available for Online Purchase

CSIM 20, which features a native 64-bit version of the CSIM library, is now available for online purchase and download.

In addition to enabling larger and more complex models on 64-bit hardware, the latest version of our long-proven CSIM simulation software also features:

  • Optimized core routines
  • Additional Process classes for Storage and Buffer objects
  • Improvements to Facilities, Mailboxes, Random Number generation, and many other objects and functions

For a detailed list of CSIM 20 features, visit
www.mesquite.com/products/csim20.htm.
You can also find all CSIM documentation online at mesquite.com/documentation/.

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Special CSIM 20 Introductory Discount for CSIM Users

From now until the end of September, we're discounting CSIM 20 for current customers as follows:

  • 75% discount if you purchased CSIM 19 in last 3 months
  • 50% for customers with active Extended Support
  • 20% for all other existing CSIM customers (note that Student Edition customers do not quality for discounts on Professional version)

CSIM 20 is normally priced at $1195 per seat for a single seat, with substantially-reduced prices for multiple seats and for educational use.

Please contact us directly to purchase CSIM 20 and receive your discount, or simply reply to this email. While CSIM 20 is available for purchase on our website, you must contact us to receive your discount so we can verify that you're an existing user.

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The Many Platforms of CSIM 20

CSIM 20 is built to work with a multitude of different platforms and compilers in both 32- and 64-bit versions. The software runs on Windows, Mac, Linux, and Solaris (both SPARC and x86), and it supports the following compilers:

  • MS Visual Studio 2008
  • MS Visual Studio 2008 Express
  • MS Visual Studio 2005
  • MS Visual Studio 6
  • Cygwin / GCC / G++
  • GCC
  • Sun Studio C/C++

For a full list of the combinations of platforms, compilers, and 64-bit versions we support, please visit www.mesquite.com/products/csim20.htm.

Note that CSIM 20 introduces support for the Mac Intel platform. However, due to lack of demand, it no longer supports Mac PPC or AIX. If you need a version of CSIM that supports these platforms, please contact Mesquite.

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CSIM for Java and CSIM 20 Student Editions - Now Available Online

Both the CSIM for Java and CSIM 20 Student Editions are now available on our website for purchase and immediate download! A limited yet very powerful version of the Professional CSIM, the CSIM Student Edition allows students affordable access to CSIM's powerful simulations. In addition to the Java version, the CSIM Student Edition is available for both C and C++ on the Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X. For a full list of supported platforms and compilers, please visit www.mesquite.com/products/csim20.htm.

Students and educators using the software for instruction (not research) are eligible to purchase the CSIM Student Edition.

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Tech Tip: 64-Bit versus 32-Bit
By Dr. Herb Schwetman

So, what is the big deal about 64-bit systems? And why is CSIM 20 available in both 32-bit and 64-bit versions?

Most programmers know (or have perhaps learned the hard way) that a program running on a 32-bit system is limited in the amount of main memory it can use. This issue stems from the fact that a 32-bit register can address at most 2^32 bytes (addresses 0 through 2^32 - 1) in main memory - which amounts to at most 4 gigabytes (about 4 billion bytes). In reality, 32 bit systems are usually limited to 2 or 3 gigabytes of main memory. So, the change to 64-bit systems is driven primarily by the need to address larger amounts of main memory. Other benefits of a 64-bit architecture include support for "long long" integer data types and the ability to handle double precision variables in one memory access. Programs compiled for 64-bit mode can usually execute faster (less time) that the same program compiled for 32-bit mode.

You might ask, "Why wasn't this done sooner?" First, large memories have only become affordable in recent times. In 1977, I authorized the purchase of memory for a VAX 11/780 system; the cost of this memory was $32K per megabyte. So 1000 megabytes (a gigabyte) was out of the question. As memory prices have decreased, larger memories have become much more affordable.

Second, while 64-bit computing is not exactly a new phenomenon, its use has only become widespread in the past few years. Some systems have supported 64-bit computing for more than 10 years; 64-bit Sun SPARC processors were available in the 1990s (as were 64-bit IBM and 64-bit MIPS processors). However, since the overwhelming majority of processors in use today are based on the Intel IA-32 instruction set, 64-bit processors did not become widespread until 64-bit versions of the IA-32 were developed by AMD and Intel. Today, almost all desktop and laptop systems can support 64-bit computing. The genius of the 64-bit version of IA-32 is that programs from either mode can operate on this version. Of course, the operating system on your system must support the computing mode you are using (32-bit or 64-bit).

Many CSIM users have expressed a need to implement very large simulation models; in some cases, these models were limited by the 2 gigabyte limit imposed by 32-bit processors. An example of such a large simulation model is a model of a large multiprocessor computer system with possibly 1000's of processing nodes.

Mesquite has responded to these expressed needs by providing support for 64-bit computing in CSIM 20. This upgrade involved making changes in the core routines of the simulation engine.

So, if your plans for simulation models include large models, with demands for large amounts of main memory, CSIM 20 may be just what you need. Both the 64-bit and the 32-bit versions are provided in each package to support users using these kinds of systems. Check with Mesquite Software for the specific platforms that are supported.

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We hope you find our new versions (CSIM 20, CSIM 20 Student Edition and CSIM for Java Student Edition) efficient, fast, and valuable. We certainly welcome your feedback, questions, and thoughts, so feel free to drop us an email or give us a call.

Warm regards,

Nan Schwetman, President
Mesquite Software, Inc.
P.O. Box 63206
Austin, Texas 78755
Tel: (800) 538-9153 (US) or +1 (512) 338-9153
Fax: +1 (512) 338-4966
E-mail: nhs@mesquite.com
www: www.mesquite.com

This newsletter is sent to our user community and interested parties by Mesquite Software. You may subscribe by visiting: www.mesquite.com/newsletter/signup.html