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Comment: Re:not the problem (Score 2) 90

Centralized remote syslog server that also feeds to Elasticsearch which indexes the syslog entries for reporting and searching. After daily aggregate reports are done, a week later the entries are moved to spinning rust and only the canned reports stay on SSD. With the way Lucene works and our indexing is setup, a 100 byte syslog entry can easily turn into 2k of index. The canned reports now only take a tenth of the time they took before we added the five Samsung drives and the historical reports load even faster than that, but the drives are just wearing out too quickly for comfort.

So you're simply using the wrong drives. The 840 EVO is a consumer level drive. You want a more enterprise like drive like Intel 3700, which is warranted for 10 drive writes per day for 5 years. It costs more, sure, but you can surely justify the cost based on the performance and reliability benefits.

Comment: Re:Star Wars! (Score 1) 253

by Christian Smith (#49162815) Attached to: 20-Year-Old Military Weather Satellite Explodes In Orbit

It took nearly that long for the current battery tech to leave the lab and be a commodity, so bleeding edge satellite batteries from 20 years ago may compare directly to ten year old or maybe even five year old laptop batteries.

I doubt it. The last thing you want in an unserviceable satellite is bleeding edge battery technology. You want to use what you know works, stable mature technology, and work within the known limitations of such technology.

Comment: Re:The solution is obvious (Score 1) 579

It's not a problem with the kernel or any part of the software-hardware interface - it's a bug in the browser component, which is purely software. They could patch it for everyone if they wanted.

They have. It's called Android KitKat.

And when you say "they", who is "they". My contention is "they" is the hardware vendor/carrier, not Google, for the reasons outlined above.

Comment: Re:The solution is obvious (Score 1) 579

No, it's your hardware provider that is your problem, not Google.

Do you update your Windows/Linux/OSX PC/laptop from the OS vendor or the company that sold you the hardware? It's almost always the OS vendor. A PC/laptop is very similar to a smartphone except the latter is smaller. Google's model of pushing updates through the hardware vendor utterly stupid and adds an extra unnecessary middleman to the process.

Not the same issue. PCs are standard, using largely off the shelf parts, a discoverable PCI based bus architecture to attach peripherals to the CPU, and the OS component is bought in.

In the case of a phone, the hardware is proprietry, using device trees to describe where peripherals are mapped (may vary between vendors) and the OS image itself usually customized by the network operator to push their crapware and "value add" tools.

Contact your hardware provider and bitch to them, not Google.

Why can't google's patch fix the issue? Is there a different kernel for each android phone so that different patches are needed for each phone?

Exactly. Each hardware vendor provides it's own kernel, and probably own version of drivers such as GPU and radio devices. The way Android is put onto phones is via a single monolithic read-only image, so it's all or nothing when updating the base Android image.

Now, if the hardware vendors make after market ROMs easier to install (or just possible to install without hacking the phone) then it might not even be an issue. My HTC One S (stock Android == 4.1) is happily running CM12 (Lollipop based), and it rocks. But again, this is outside Google's control, and I had to get unlock codes from HTC to do so (but at least they do so without requiring jail-breaking hacks.)

+ - Lost Mars probe, Beagle2, found apparently intact.->

Submitted by Christian Smith
Christian Smith (3497) writes "Although comfort to the late Colin Pillinger, the plucky european lander appears to have been found on the Mars surface by Nasa's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, just 5km off center of it's targeted touchdown zone.

The lander, assumed destroyed on entry to the Martion atmosphere, appears to have landed as planned, but failed to completely deploy its solar panel "petals", blocking the communications antenna.

Close, but no cigar."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Hope he doesn't lose power (Score 1) 56

by Christian Smith (#48595889) Attached to: Raspberry Pi In Space

Pis are great.
But when the power drops.the filesystem on the SDcard is corrupt.

That's probably more a function of your crappy SDCard. These things are cheap, and probably not engineered to handle partial writes that would corrupt the card.

I do wonder why though, is it so difficult to order writes so that what's committed to FLASH is always recoverable?

Comment: Re:.50 WHAT? (Score 1) 127

by Christian Smith (#48553759) Attached to: Samsung SSD 850 EVO 32-Layer 3D V-NAND-Based SSD Tested

But flash was already that cheap, so that would hardly be a breakthrough.

They only have to match the current market, which is a bonus if you can do so with an effectively new technology.

Once mature, Samsung will probably be able to bang these out much cheaper. Also, any bad non-SSD grade chips will just be redirected to their SD Card devision, which will map out the bad blocks at the controller level and work with what would otherwise be waste.

The FLASH industry is very efficient, and the price will remain high (price parity with planer FLASH) until Samsung recoup their upfront R&D costs, before raking in the money.

Comment: Re:lowering price? (Score 1) 127

by Christian Smith (#48553739) Attached to: Samsung SSD 850 EVO 32-Layer 3D V-NAND-Based SSD Tested

They're not stacking silicon wafers on top of each other. Rather, they're putting more layers of oxide, semiconductor, etc onto each wafer in order to produce the 3d stacking. Yes, it's more complex. But it's a pretty mature technology.

They're actually doing both. The 120GB drive only has a single NAND package (the PCB is tiny!) which contains 8 stacked 3D NAND dies. The NAND package has eight chip select pins, one for each die, and the controller interleaves requests to each die to achieve parallelism.

Comment: Re:It's an Intel cpu (Score 2) 109

by Christian Smith (#48416387) Attached to: Nokia's N1 Android Tablet Is Actually a Foxconn Tablet

Still, the only advantage is if someone manages to run Linux on it. Might make up for the extra heat and lower battery life, to be able to run full featured Linux on it.

Um, you know Android is Linux, right? There's not much special about the Linux kernel in Android, just a few tweaks to the stock kernel to make it suitable to the environement on which it runs.

Almost all the Android special sauce is the user space, so the main difference between an Android system and a regular Linux distribution is what happens when PID 1 is executed. Change init, and you change the system entirely.

Run a debian chroot under Android if you want a regular looking Linux. Install a terminal app on android, and use a BT keyboard for input, and you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference from a regular Linux distro command line.

Comment: Re:No (Score 1) 232

by Christian Smith (#48300133) Attached to: Will HP's $200 Stream 11 Make People Forget About Chromebooks?

- return Windows to Microsoft for a $100 refund

Seriously - if you can score this hardware for $100 and run some other OS, they'll sell like hotcakes.

Except you'd more likely get around the ~$15 (guesstimate, no citation) OEM unit license cost as a refund. We're not talking the retail license here, and it puts into light what a rip-off the retail license cost actually is (assuming the extra cost of for the "support" that comes with the retail license.)

Comment: Re:Top Gear had an interesting experiment (Score 1) 403

Top Gear had an interesting experiment where they raced a Prius against a BMW M3. But what they did was have the Prius go all out and the M3 just paced it. Then they measured the actual gas consumed and found that the BMW had better mileage under those circumstances.

This is what I'd expect, to be honest. I'd expect efficiency losses from the mixed drive train of the Prius, as there are energy losses when charging the battery under braking. Plus, most of the kinetic energy of the Prius is lost under braking as heat in the brakes, as the battery can't handle the power of hard braking under regenerative braking, so the physical brakes take over. Under normal driving conditions, much more of the kinetic energy would have been captured with much less aggressive breaking.

This scenario was pretty much the worst case for the Prius, whereas the BMW was very far from the worst case (being a faster car generally, it was cantering.)

But Jezza did make the point that it is largely how you drive that determines mileage, and even quite big cars can get excellent mileage with highway driving, especially if they use efficient turbo diesel egines (which have much better part throttle efficiency compared to comparable gas/petrol engines.) Get up to speed, stick the cruise control on, then relax.

Comment: Re:No warning? (Score 1) 54

by Christian Smith (#48018261) Attached to: Update: At Least 31 People Feared Dead After Japan Volcano Erupts

Perhaps you should read the articles you link.

The scientists where well aware of the earth quake! But they did not issue proper warnings! And that *is manslaughter*!

According the article, the scientists were well aware of the tremors that preceded the major earth quake, but as Italy is seismically very active anyway, didn't see any cause for concern of the tremors over and above all the other trremors Italy gets. And as none of them were alive in the 14th, 15th and 18th century (for which I doubt accurate, detailed seismic accounts are kept) they had no previous data on which to base their findings other than the ongoing seismic activity.

The article points to nothing else other than a travesty of justice.

Comment: Re:Stop using Facebook (Score 1) 261

Dick Cheney brought us the current mess. He set the bar. W was just his sock-puppet.

Oh yeah, that makes sense. The son of a former President, former CIA Director, grandson of a U.S. Senator, and great-grandson of one of the 19th centuries rail barons was merely a sock puppet serving the interests of the son of a minor bureaucrat with the Department of Agriculture. You know, people should look at the nature of history before they start building conspiracy theories.

This son of a bastard nobody changed millions of lives with war.

If you think "stock" makes people great or powerful, then you're no better than all the various monarchies overthrown in the last few hundred years. Nepotism only goes so far.

Comment: Re:quiet = powerful (Score 3, Insightful) 116

by Christian Smith (#47823955) Attached to: The Quiet Revolution of Formula E Electric Car Racing

A lot of car makers left F1 in the past, Mercedes has returned, but Honda, BMW and Toyota have left.

Only because they were having their ass handed to them on a plate. Toyota achieved literally nothing in their F1 stint, BMW did get some wins, but weren't competitive enough to justify the investment. Honda ditto, but left at the wrong time (the post-Honda Brawn team won the 2009 championship with the Honda designed car.)

And there are other racing series, which may be more road relevent. The Audi R18 e-tron has a Diesel hybrid drivetrainm with flywheel based energy storage. Very road relavent and innovative in the field.

Motor Racing does help drive innovation but in a sport where the FIA have virtually done away with any concept of innovation, it'll be difficult to see how this new formula will enhance the sport or spur innovation in day to day cars. Fans are leaving, sponsors are worried and that means no money and a dead series coming soon.

It's not all about innovation. It's also about the grunt work of refining what you have. That's why Mercedes are dominating even the other identically powered cars. They've done the best job within the rules defined.

And there are lots of ways to innovate in chassis and aerodynamic design. The current crop of F1 cars have a very diverse array of front end designs.

And lets be honest, most F1 innovations don't translate to road cars anyway. The biggest influence of F1 and other motor racing has been in the engine management and fuel injection areas. Racing aerodynamics? Moot. Suspension design? Not applicable to most road cars. Sequential gearboxes? Came from bikes anyway. Tires? Irrelevent unless you only want your tires to last a week.

Comment: Final nail in the Itanium coffin (Score 1, Interesting) 161

by Christian Smith (#47774165) Attached to: Research Shows RISC vs. CISC Doesn't Matter

20 years ago, RISC vs CISC absolutely mattered. The x86 decoding was a major bottleneck and transistor budget overhead.

As the years have gone by, the x86 decode overhead has been dwarfed by the overhead of other units like functional units, reorder buffers, branch prediction, caches etc. The years have been kind to x86, making the x86 overhead appear like noise in performance. Just an extra stage in an already long pipeline.

All of which paints a bleak picture for Itanium. There is no compelling reason to keep Itanium alive other than existing contractual agreements with HP. SGI was the only other major Itanium holdout, and they basically dumped it long ago. And Itaiums are basically just glorified space heaters in terms of power usage.

No amount of careful planning will ever replace dumb luck.