When a computer program needs memory, it allocates it. When it no longer needs it, it frees it. Computer memory is shared among programs, so it really is bad practice to hold on to memory when it is no longer needed. Freeing the memory makes it available to other programs. When I worked for Ithaca Software on HOOPS, a platform independent 3D graphics system, HOOPS had an error message:
Size of memory allocated not equal to size of memory freed. Oh dear.
This meant that the application using HOOPS had some kind of programming error where the application was not freeing up the same amount of memory as it had originally allocated. This condition is referred to as a memory leak since the memory will not be available to other applications until the computer is restarted.
Today Autodesk Labs had a leak of another kind. Torrential rain leaked through the windows of our offices.
The team attached plastic to funnel the leaking water into containers. I guess this is the counterpoint to our sun dial. Half of the parking lot of our San Rafael offices was flooded:
High winds overturned tractor trailer trucks on California highways. Despite all of this, we did successfully demo Autodesk Design Review and Metropolis on our multi-touch display. I guess we're like the US Post Office: "Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these developers from the swift completion of their appointed demos."
We hope everyone remains safe amid the stormy weather across the world.