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Comment: Re:So much for long distance Listening (Score 1) 212

by Blaskowicz (#49503927) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Indeed with digital TVs I witnessed some crappy sound disruption that made the show unwatchable, at times.
With analog TV, we did have a digital sound track called NICAM, which could get disrupted : then we got fall back to analog mono sound. Some TVs had the option, sometimes on the remote to force analog mono sound, which is useful if it's constantly jumping back and forth between the analog mono and digital stereo track.

A good FM receiver may have a switch to stay in mono for about the same reason!, this time it's purely analog but you have mono + "stereo information" that are combined to form a real stereo signal (LP records are similar), if reception is bad there's a fall back to using the mono part only.

Comment: Re:So much for long distance Listening (Score 1) 212

by Blaskowicz (#49503899) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Where I am in France, if I tune in to AM I mostly hear a shit ton of spanish language spoken very fast, and broadcasts from across the Mediterranean. That requires using an old radio with a needle though, as most every radio with a digits display and electronic tuning just fails at receiving anything (some might work better if adding a piece of antenna or wire, but there has to be a connector on the back)
French AM station are a handful of national radios you can receive on FM anyway, only useful for grandmas and remote places (or from abroad, I guess)

Comment: Re:About half (Score 1) 212

by Blaskowicz (#49503861) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Chip amplifiers are very much worth it (class D amps). That's a chip, but it only amplifies sound, supported by a few capacitors etc.
You could have an uncomputerized car radio, with even a knob and needle rather than the "press the + button 95 times or do a search" feature, that uses the chip amp.

Bluetooth transmitter could sit in there.. as long as it's a small module wired as an analog input, next to "aux in".

Comment: Re:About half (Score 1) 212

by Blaskowicz (#49503829) Attached to: Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

I do have a cell phone which receives radio without the cable. It is nice for listening to some talk/news and occasionally a bit of music while walking and bored, but it is not really good for that.

Other cell phones, you can use a jack cable instead of a headphone, that is more convenient if you never use earbuds.

Comment: Re:Open Tech is closing? (Score 1) 108

That's S3 mode stand by, if you can accept the name and limitations. Such as : don't actually cut the power, never mind the occasionally possible network issues, or particular linux issues (when powered back up, it sends my graphics card in "emergency mode" i.e. fan at 100% speed and it stays at 100% speed till I reboot)


Gyrocopter Pilot Appears In Court; Judge Bans Him From D.C. 264

Posted by timothy
from the but-what-if-air-&-space-gets-the-copter? dept.
mpicpp writes The Florida mail carrier accused of landing a gyrocopter outside the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday was charged in federal court Thursday and has been barred from returning to the District of Columbia or flying any aircraft, officials said. Douglas Hughes, 61, was charged with violating aircraft registration requirements, a felony, and violating national defense airspace, a misdemeanor. If convicted, he could be sentenced to up to three years in prison for the felony and one year in prison for the airspace violation. U.S. Magistrate Judge Deborah A. Robinson also barred Hughes from the District of Columbia, except for court appearances, and said he must stay away from the Capitol, White House and nearby areas while he is there. He will also have to hand over his passport.

Comment: How to fix Google Earth to display pictures (Score 1) 203

by Blaskowicz (#49492785) Attached to: Google Sunsetting Old Version of Google Maps

Amazingly but unsurprisingly, Google Earth the 3D package that does about the same thing as the 2D Google maps is like an order of magnitude less demanding on hardware resources. It even requires little GPU performance (a geforce 6100 is more than fine for instance)

So I may recommend it as an alternative if Google Maps is too slow, or if you need something to run on old or very slow hardware. Roads/streets can be enabled with one click - you end up with something that looks like a superposition of plan and aerial photos, and street view is available.

Yet it may fail to display the damn little pictures. At least on linux (ubuntu 14.04 derivate), the embedded browser seems to fail depending on what version you use. Had to rip out "google-earth-stable" from my system, then install "googleearth-package" which is kind of like setup.exe files that act as downloaders for Windows software. Then run "make-googleearth-package" which you can helpfully find by typing "mak" and hitting tab, tab, or by searching for it with such thing as " find /usr -name '*google*' ". How wonderfully user friendly is that!
But unexpectedly, I've just fixed the problem.
It went from version to version, go figure. It seemed slow at first but that's a matter of repopulating the cache.

Comment: Re:Sadly, I don't see an "out" for AMD (Score 1) 123

by Blaskowicz (#49492061) Attached to: AMD Withdraws From High-Density Server Business

AMD still has too low single-thread performance and if you care about that, Intel came out with Celeron G1620 and Pentium G2020 (now updated with the same as Haswell) and has ruled the low end too.

AMD ironically requires a more expensive motherboard and an aftermarket heatsink/fan if you go for that old six-core CPU. (but I do have that opinion that a CPU with four or six or more cores is most needed for games, unless you're a professional who works all the time with lots of big pictures or video)
I would get an AMD set up only knowingly, knowing that's is barely better than Phenom II / C2Q 9550 performance. Flagship recent AMD CPU are A10 7850K and Athlon 860K, still a lot slower than an Intel 2500K.
Fortunately I lost interest in games, as they required to spend hundreds $/€ for incremental graphics improvements and they required to use Vista/7/8.

Comment: Re:Consumers are not going to notice much differen (Score 1) 72

Weren't workstations of the 80s and 90s just powerful microcomputers?
CPU with memory protection (e.g. 68010 plus MMU), SCSI disks, high resolution (about a megapixel), several megabytes of memory, advanced OS : Unix-like, Windows NT or something else.

By that measure, any good low end desktop computer is a workstation. By 2001, that had Windows XP and Ultra DMA IDE modes ; a decade or less later we had SATA with NCQ (no need for SCSI), support for dual monitor and SMP as standard (dual and quad core).

Comment: Re:Consumers are not going to notice much differen (Score 1) 72

There is a nice improvement going from AHCI to NVMe protocol, though. I/O gets lower latency, less CPU intensive, less "blocking".

That may seem "philosophical" still. At a first approximation latency is halved. The tech will be a good thing to have once the drives get plentiful and cheap.

Comment: Re:It's sucks but.. (Score 1) 309

by Blaskowicz (#49480225) Attached to: NVIDIA's New GPUs Are Very Open-Source Unfriendly

I mean these are so ridiculously powerful cards that if one buy one, that may be because you wanted to run some demanding and advanced game. There are at least a handful available now for linux desktops. But if you use an open source driver, and it manages to run the game without crashing or debilitating bugs, the driver will likely bottleneck you so much you get like 10% or 20% of the performance.
Way to waste a computer upgrade, both GPU and CPU - you do need to upgrade the latter to play advanced and recent games, too.

Comment: FirefoxOS has notifications? (Score 1) 197

by Blaskowicz (#49476585) Attached to: Chrome 42 Launches With Push Notifications

I don't have a FirefoxOS device to experience it, but they say they added that feature in an 1.x version. I remember thinking that crap, I thought it's the smartphone for normal people and should be a less intrusive smartphone : if you want to check mail go to the mail app. But you do have legitimate notifications on a phone : SMS and missed calls.

So.. is the web notification feature somewhat old already?
Found this on push notification, says it's supported by no desktop browser
And just "notifications", whatever they are : purportedly supported by Chrome 22 and Firefox 22, but I don't know what they are about

You will have a head crash on your private pack.