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Comment: Beyond not new... (Score 1) 43

by BillX (#48119795) Attached to: Startup's Open Source Device Promises Gamers "Surround Sound For Your Eyes"

"...people have been home-brewing their own content-driven lighting like this for a while, but this is the first I've seen that looks like a simple add-on."

There's a reason for this. What they are trying to sell is Ambilight, and Ambilight is patented.

Google "ambilight clone" and you'll find hundreds of open designs you can easily build yourself - patent holders generally don't (or can't) touch distribution of paper designs - but they're not legal to sell commercially.

Open Source

LLVM 3.5 Brings C++1y Improvements, Unified 64-bit ARM Backend 99

Posted by Soulskill
from the onward-and-upward dept.
An anonymous reader writes: LLVM 3.5 along with Clang 3.5 are now available for download. LLVM 3.5 offers many compiler advancements including a unified 64-bit ARM back-end from the merging of the Apple and community AArch64 back-ends, C++1y/C++1z language additions, self-hosting support of Clang on SPARC64, and various other compiler improvements.

Comment: Re:Simple Solution - Exam Mode (Score 1) 359

by BillX (#47831791) Attached to: How the Outdated TI-84 Plus Still Holds a Monopoly On Classrooms

Ah, those were the days. At my HS the teachers were wise and would personally clear the memory on your calculator themselves. A fake "Mem cleared" program circulated widely. It not just intercepted the keystrokes you would use to actually clear the memory, but even displayed the text dimly (probably by clearing and rewriting the string rapidly) to simulate the fact that clearing the memory on a TI-8x also reset the screen contrast to (extraordinarily dim) factory default.

Comment: The important bit (Score 5, Informative) 338

by BillX (#47725897) Attached to: FCC Warned Not To Take Actions a Republican-Led FCC Would Dislike

This has nothing to do with "banning municipal broadband" today, and everything to do with not granting a power at the Fed level that would let a future FCC in 1-2 election cycles do exactly that.


"If the history of American politics teaches us anything, it is that one political party will not remain in power for perpetuity. At some point, to quote Sam Cooke, 'a change is gonna come,'" Berry said. "And that change could come a little more than two years from now. So those who are potential supporters of the current FCC interpreting Section 706 [of the Telecommunications Act] to give the Commission the authority to preempt state laws about municipal broadband should think long and hard about what a future FCC might do with that power."

Arguing that municipal broadband networks could discourage investment by private companies, Berry said, "Itâ(TM)s not hard, then, to imagine a future FCC concluding that taxpayer-funded, municipal broadband projects themselves are barriers to infrastructure investment. So if the current FCC were successful in preempting state and local laws under Section 706, what would stop a future FCC from using Section 706 to forbid states and localities from constructing any future broadband projects? Nothing that I can see."

Comment: Re:What kind of fish? (Score 1) 180

by BillX (#47700979) Attached to: Fighting Invasive Fish With Forks and Knives

They can be delicious if prepared correctly. The main problem with carp is the pin-bones all through the flesh - you can't just split them down the middle, peel out the skeleton and enjoy, so many folks give them a pass. They're also a fairly thick fish, and with those bones it's not really practical to fillet them, so cooking them through without overcooking some part can be tricky. Slow smoking works great - a slab of smoked fish is basically finger food anyway and usually pinched off in small pieces, so it makes the bones less of an issue.

Comment: Re:good intentions? (Score 1) 135

by BillX (#47683027) Attached to: The Man Responsible For Pop-Up Ads On Building a Better Web

Ads were not an original part of free web hosts' user agreements during much of the the Web 1.0 bubble (only the usual "we can change this agreement whenever we like" clause) - and in the area where a static 468x60 banner was the gold standard, few could have forseen the evilness that was the popup ad. (Disclaimer: I tried Geocities and Angelfire circa 1997. Angelfire at the time appeared to be a medical transcription company that happened to have some server space left over.)

Comment: Re:Quick rule of thumb (Score 1) 561

by BillX (#47668885) Attached to: Apple's Diversity Numbers: 70% Male, 55% White

I know a couple radfems and social justice, professional victim types, and use a very similar test for the stuff they are always parroting: I call it the Black People test. Replace every occurrence of "men", "white straight males", etc. with "black people" and re-read it. If posting the revised copy under your name would get you fired from your day-job, it fails the test.

Comment: Twist on a very old idea? (Score 2) 89

by BillX (#47463981) Attached to: Harvesting Energy From Humidity

While the "water droplets spontaneously jumping off superhydrophobic surfaces" effect is interesting in itself, the mechanism of stripping charge from those droplets as they leave the apparatus sounds like a variation of the Kelvin water-drop energy harvester from 1867. In this case, rather than charge separation via the cross-connected cups, electric-double-layer charge-separation occurs between the droplet and the hydrophobic surface, causing the two to come away similarly unbalanced when the droplet jumps away.

I go on working for the same reason a hen goes on laying eggs. -- H.L. Mencken