The Ballad of 15-740

Words: Bridget Spitznagel

Music: The Ballad Of Davy Crockett, Tom Blackburn and George Bruns

Meets in a classroom in dear old Wean,
Concrete-est building there's ever been.
Taught every year so's students have seen
Hardware and code and everything between

Fifteen Seven-Forty, known as the CS core

Started with MIPS and DLX,
A comparison of instruction sets,
All kinds of pipelining covered next,
And computer arithmetic - joys of hex

Fifteen Seven-Forty, hold on 'cause there's more

Caches and virtual memory,
I/O, buses, storage and TCP,
Multimedia, shared memory,
Cache protocols checked with SMV

Fifteen Seven-Forty, every week there's more

Hypercubes and toruses and butterflies
Routing and wormholes and VLSI,
Processor/memory interface, slides
of the Cray T3E to exemplify.

Fifteen Seven-Forty, pass that CS core

Parallel programming (NESL here)
Data or control, algorithms made clear,
And PVM and vectors and the next 10 years,
Take the final and go drink beer

Fifteen Seven-Forty, let's go find some beer

  (... meet at PHI after the final)

Background: One of the courses that CMU CS graduate students are required to take is the computer systems core course. One of the assignments dealt with the bandwidth and storage needs of multimedia, and incidentally involved watching the Davy Crockett themesong. Repeatedly.

In addition to cataloguing subjects the course had covered, the final verse suggested reviving the dying tradition of hitting the Panther Hollow Inn (picturesquely described as "a dive down the street") after the final. I handed it round before the final but it met with little success. Bad weather didn't help.

Legal frufru: Lyrics © 1996, Bridget Spitznagel. Permission granted for private noncommercial use and reproduction of these lyrics, provided that this copyright notice remains intact. Other uses are negotiable.

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Bridget Spitznagel
Last modified: Tue Nov 11 19:17:09 EST 1997