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Comment: Re:The bigger question IMHO (Score 1) 189

by DrXym (#48679359) Attached to: MIT Unifies Web Development In Single, Speedy New Language
The reason that other languages have sprung up is because Javascript is a horrible language. It's incredibly easy to write bugs that slip through and cost more time / money to find and fix. e.g. Write o.foo() in your JS and with strict mode the runtime compiler will throw an error if o wasn't declared but it doesn't give a damn if foo() is undefined, or that foo() takes those parameters, or even if foo() is a function to begin with. It's only when o.foo() is invoked and the runtime discovers it's undefined, nil, an array, or a function that you discover if there was a bug or not. And your entire JS might just break at that point. It's the sort of thing an IDE for another language would have caught even while you were typing the code. So you need to write a bazillion unit tests and stoke up the code coverage just to catch stupid errors. Even things like the "this" reference have obscure behaviours that can befuddle developers (and strict / non strict changes those behaviours!).

That's why an entire industry has sprung up to solve Javascript. It starts with the likes of JQuery / Underscore which paper over the cracks between implementations and battle tested code that every site needs. Then you have things like CoffeeScript / Typescript are basically glorified precompilers which add terseness (cs) or types (ts) but spit out recognizable JS. The likes of Dart and GWT do more complex generation. At the extreme you have the likes of Emscripten which compiles C/C++ code into LLVM bitcode and a JS runtime - so basically you can compile and run any language at that point, within the limitations with JS.

Even browsers recognize how problematic JS is. We have a "use strict" mode that take the edge of the worst ambiguities. We even have a "use asm" to support compiled runtimes like Emscripten with an optimizable subset of JS. And the likes of Firefox / Chrome will look for a .map file when you debug JS and will show you the input source - unminified js / cs / ts / dart / whatever if it finds one. Basically they know JS sucks and are trying to facilitate devs who use another language.

Comment: Let's apply the same logic to these assholes (Score 1) 325

by DrXym (#48675283) Attached to: Why Lizard Squad Took Down PSN and Xbox Live On Christmas Day
We should teach them the importance of protecting their fingers by smashing their fingers with a lump hammer. The same logic they used as justification for their attack.

The real reason they attacked is quite simple. They're antisocial, immature pricks. If they ever get caught you just know these losers will play the asperger's card in their defence.

Comment: Well thank goodness (Score 5, Insightful) 189

by DrXym (#48675267) Attached to: MIT Unifies Web Development In Single, Speedy New Language
I always thought that the one thing web programming needed was YET ANOTHER PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE. One that seems to reinvent cgi programming combining business logic and structure into a single file and tosses the lot into a functional programming blender so nobody has a fucking clue what's going on.

Comment: Like butter spread over too much bread (Score 3, Insightful) 348

by DrXym (#48663987) Attached to: Ars: Final Hobbit Movie Is 'Soulless End' To 'Flawed' Trilogy
The Hobbit moves weren't bad - indeed some of sections were expertly done. But god were they padded out. The entire story could have been told competently in 2 movies without missing out anything of significance. I expect there will be an even more extended edition in time but really there should also be a reduced edition. But that would be admission that commercial interests outweighed artistic ones.

But Phantom Menace bad? Nowhere close.

Comment: Re:Microsoft has free support cards (Score 2) 128

by DrXym (#48659597) Attached to: Comcast's Lobbyists Hand Out VIP Cards To Skip the Customer Service Wait
I bet lots of companies do it - sign up for their most expensive credit card, or phone plan, or cable package and the number you call prioritizes you in the queue. The reason of course is simple - they care more about keeping the cash cows happy more than the scum signed up on the basic package.

Comment: Re:SOAP vs Rest (Score 1) 183

by DrXym (#48658679) Attached to: Devuan Progress Report Published
I don't see many parallels. Working with systemd isn't exactly rocket science for admins or end users. Instead of typing one command to start or stop a service you type another. Systems even provide aliases or links to support the old notation, e.g. shutdown in FC21 is a link to systemctl which infers what to do from argv[0].

Tenuous comparison aside, probably the main reason SOAP dropped out of sight was it wasn't suitable for the eventual problem domain. SOAP was fine for computer to computer (B2B) communication where it's rather important to have schemas with validation, XML signatures, bindings like Axis that generate some nice stub classes for you and all that stuff. But it's a pain in the ass when you're a bit of JS in a browser trying to process some text you just got from a server and it's too much effort to produce schemas for the sake of some snippets of data. Of course JSON has taken off so much that suddenly having a schema for validation purposes is quite important again. I bet anyone who has used JSON in a server or wherever has had to handroll validators to ensure what they're getting is correct (e.g. that a field exists or contains a number etc.). There are drafts to produce a JSON schema spec and I expect in time tools will appear that spew out stubs and validators from a schema in a manner not wholly dissimilar from SOAP. So things will turn full circle in time. Doubtless someone will proclaim that JSON is too much effort at that point and suddenly we'll all supposed to be using YAML.

Comment: Re: Crackberry is Back (Score 1) 132

by DrXym (#48635145) Attached to: Review: The BlackBerry Classic Is One of the Best Phones of 2009

It's not self-evident. There are serious jank problems while scrolling, 10-second latency problems navigating trivial apps like Settings, and nagging battery-drain problems with Android. These are the main problems the platform has.

Utter bollocks. And even if it were true (and it isn't) it does not mean the kernel is to blame so your point would still be bollocks.

Memory use isn't one of the problems: the standard phone went from 0.5GByte to 2GByte RAM a couple years ago without any significant change in app functionality, and the K release used less memory than the J release so general platform bloat is actually going backwards: the stack's memory tax is therefore less than a quarter of the standard platform size and not a big deal for emulation.

Utter bollocks again. Android has increased memory generally so more apps stay resident in memory. The less memory, the more likely it would be to purge apps. In other words it makes use of the memory for stuff.

Performance probably isn't a problem wrt the emulation because the performance problems are not flat-out CPU bound work nor mean-latency problems: doubling the mean latency would not be a big deal because android has such huge tail-latency problems. And doubling mean latency in return for cutting max latency is exactly what hard-realtime kernels like Neutrino are made for. Whether they can do this through the android stack is doubtful because the latency is probably coming from java crappo, but who knows. Anyway it's not self-evident that emulation will cause a memory problem for Android, nor that it will cause a performance/battery problem.

Utter bollocks because it presupposes your other bollocks and makes no sense in any event. The point I was making was that to emulate Android, a Black Berry device has the memory pressure of two runtimes in memory at once (the native one) and the emulated one (plus shims). It obviously impacts on memory and performance.

Emulation and battery-drain problems aren't related because they're caused by poor scheduling, bugs, held "wake locks", etc. Part of the area where bugs can exist will be replaced, so if QNX is higher-quality than Android in this replaced area it will win the battery game.

It's true that a misbehaved app can drain battery but normal drain is caused by the screen, radio and general activity. And in any event it's largely an irrelevance what kernel is underneath because an app can misbehave over any kernel. And modern kernels are wasting CPU / battery unless something above is telling them to.

Comment: Re: Crackberry is Back (Score 2) 132

by DrXym (#48632323) Attached to: Review: The BlackBerry Classic Is One of the Best Phones of 2009
It's largely a matter of indifference to a handset's performance what kernel is running under a phone handset. Providing the kernel offers functionality required by handsets it could be NT, Linux, BSD or something else. It's the user land and application sitting on top which dictates the user experience and what hardware / battery the device which dictates that. I assume that Blackberry pack a big battery, the smaller screen and some aggressive power saving defaults could extend the life of the device.

It should also be self evident that if a Blackberry device has to load up a substantial chunk of an Android runtime and an emulation layer (in addition to its own services) to run an Android app that it will be neither as performant or memory efficient as a standard Android device. It has two stacks to wrangle and there might be limits on the Android emulation that cause performance issues of its own.

In fact it's hard to see why they bother emulating Android at all when they could just *be* Android. Doesn't stopping them locking it down with Knox, encrypted storage etc. It would save them a hell of a lot of effort in the long run and would broaden the appeal of a device if it actually ran the apps people wanted to use. Emulation and Amazon's store is better than nothing but it's still an extremely poor substitute for the Play store.

Comment: Re:Riiiiight. (Score 1) 233

by DrXym (#48596677) Attached to: Ford Ditches Microsoft Partnership On Sync, Goes With QNX
I have no trouble running a Windows 7 desktop for months without a reboot. Typically I'll work all day and sleep it at night. That's a desktop which is hammering resources for most of the day. Some poxy media system is not going to trouble a kernel even assuming the kernel leaked (which I doubt any modern kernel does).

Comment: Re:Riiiiight. (Score 1) 233

by DrXym (#48582561) Attached to: Ford Ditches Microsoft Partnership On Sync, Goes With QNX

It does sound like an advertising pitch, but this is accurate about QNX. The OS isn't cheap, but it does offer realtime functionality. It also is designed to be quite stable to where a bug or a hang can cause tremendous disasters, be it software with X-ray machine or figuring out what position to move a set of control rods in a reactor. QNX has excellent internal security, and a decent development kit.

The thing is here it's being used for an in-car entertainment system. It doesn't have to be realtime, it doesn't have to require stability beyond what a regular kernel would offer. In fact it shouldn't matter a damn what kernel is powering the system since most of the functionality is going to be sitting in an application layer well above the kernel itself.

I'm not sure what motivated Ford to switch. Maybe QNX uses less memory or is more performant with the chipset they want to use, or is simply cheaper to licence. Or maybe the automotive industry is naturally conservative and comforted by some extra certification QNX offers that Windows doesn't. Whatever the reason, I doubt the end user experience or reliability would be appreciably different whether they had used an NT, Linux, BSD or a QNX kernel - any modern kernel would have served the software well. Whether the application itself is good is an entirely separate matter altogether.

Comment: Re:dropped that fool and the systemd it rode in on (Score 1) 106

by DrXym (#48571951) Attached to: Fedora 21 Released
I'm not saying it's hard but it's still has usability that's all over the place. A done button in the top left, an install in the bottom right, where's cancel? The post install welcome screen puts its buttons in the top right! And it's not clear the tasks are actually clickable since they don't look like things to be clicked on (a slight background might help). Another confusion is the exclamation mark sometimes means "you must do something" and other times "you might do something" e.g. I must set my partition but during installation I don't have to create a user, or rather if I change the root password, the exclamation point disappears from add user task.

It's not insurmountable. It's just a bad first impression.

Comment: Re:JPEG2000 replaced JPEG (Score 2) 377

by DrXym (#48571097) Attached to: Bellard Creates New Image Format To Replace JPEG

A bigger roadblock might be that these days, bandwidth (and storage) is cheap, and so savings in image size are less relevant than they used to be.

Bandwidth isn't cheap on mobile data networks. On the other hand, requiring phones to execute battery sapping image decompression in Javascript is hardly a great idea either.

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