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Graphics

Khronos Group Announces Vulkan To Compete Against DirectX 12 80

Posted by timothy
from the cross-platform-good dept.
Phopojijo writes The Khronos Group has announced the Vulkan API for compute and graphics. Its goal is to compete against DirectX 12. It has some interesting features, such as queuing to multiple GPUs and an LLVM-based bytecode for its shading language to remove the need for a compiler from the graphics drivers. Also, the API allows graphics card vendors to support Vulkan with drivers back to Windows XP "and beyond."
Censorship

Inside the North Korean Data Smuggling Movement 60

Posted by timothy
from the western-imperialists-violating-the-kim-family's-rights dept.
Sparrowvsrevolution writes A new Wired magazine story goes inside the North Korean rebel movement seeking to overthrow Kim Jong-un by smuggling USB drives into the country packed with foreign television and movies. As the story describes, one group has stashed USB drives in Chinese cargo trucks. Another has passed them over from tourist boats that meet with fishermen mid-river. Others arrange USB handoffs at the Chinese border in the middle of the night with walkie talkies, laser pointers, and bountiful bribes. Even Kim assassination comedy The Interview, which the North Korean government allegedly hacked Sony to prevent from being released, has made it into the country: Chinese traders' trucks carried 20 copies of the film across the border the day after Christmas, just two days after its online release.

Comment: Re:Irrelevent (Score 1) 94

You're right that Dell laptops are relatively easy to modify and upgrade - for a laptop. But still you can't expect to transplant a motherboard into any but the most closely related model. I upgraded my old M90 to an M6300 by replacing the motherboard, CPU and memory. For the M6400, I believe that the motherboard and case from the M6500 should be compatible (provided you change the CPU and CPU heatsink) but I cannot be entirely sure. The newer 17 inch Dell models have 1920x1080 screens instead of 1920x1200. You couldn't jam the older screen into them because it is physically a different size, even if the connector turns out to be the same.
Earth

Fish Found Living Half a Mile Under Antarctic Ice 79

Posted by timothy
from the we're-going-to-need-a-lot-more-line dept.
BarbaraHudson (3785311) writes "Researchers were startled to find fish, crustaceans and jellyfish investigating a submersible camera after drilling through nearly 2,500 feet (740 meters) of Antarctic ice. The swimmers are in one of the world's most extreme ecosystems, hidden beneath the Ross Ice Shelf, roughly 530 miles (850 kilometers) from the open ocean. "This is the closest we can get to something like Europa," said Slawek Tulaczyk, a glaciologist at the University of California, Santa Cruz and a chief scientist on the drilling project. More pictures here."

Comment: Re:Modern Technology (Score 2) 189

by Ed Avis (#48766465) Attached to: UK Government Department Still Runs VME Operating System Installed In 1974
I think you're missing the point. It is not about hardware durability. The original hardware installed in 1974 has long since been replaced (probably several times over). It is the software that costs money over the long term - hiring programmers to maintain it. And it is the software that is the reason the system hasn't been replaced with something else.

Comment: Re:Comodo's certificate extortion (Score 1) 237

by Ed Avis (#48505021) Attached to: Firefox 34 Arrives With Video Chat, Yahoo Search As Default
Fine, self-signed certs should not be "silently accepted" - but then totally unencrypted, plain-text-over-the-wire, any-idiot-with-a-network-card-can-sniff-it traffic shouldn't be silently accepted either! Nobody objects to a reasonable browser warning on self-signed certificates. What many gripe about is the fact that these same browsers then show unencrypted sites with no question at all. Often, if Firefox produces an SSL certificate warning I just change the URI from https: to http: to get the damn thing out of my way.

Comment: It's a 68008, as used in... (Score 1) 147

by Ed Avis (#48441023) Attached to: Linux On a Motorola 68000 Solder-less Breadboard
In fact this is not the 68000 but its crippled little brother the 68008, which uses an 8-bit external data bus (as the 8088 is to the 8086). That was also used in the Sinclair QL, which was Linus's first computer before he bought a 386 PC and got into Minix. Could Linux now be ported to run on the QL?

Comment: Re:Will take years to tackle Oracle crown (Score 1) 102

by Ed Avis (#48376683) Attached to: Amazon Goes After Oracle (Again) With New Aurora Database
Don't SAP have their own RDBMS, called SAP DB or MaxDB? It was even released as free software a few years back (then they changed their mind and went back to proprietary). Do you mean that despite that, the only database backend that works well with large SAP installations is Oracle?

Comment: Re:Could have been worse (Score 5, Interesting) 236

by Ed Avis (#48324793) Attached to: CNN Anchors Caught On Camera Using Microsoft Surface As an iPad Stand

In terms of sheer numbers, I'd guess you are right: more Win32 applications have been written since 1995 or so than there are apps for iOS. Especially if you include in-house software.

In terms of applications to do something most people want to do, which is a subjective measure I admit, iOS may have the lead. Particularly so if you look for software that's optimized for tablet use: there are a lot of very capable Windows programs which are rather less usable on a tablet than with a physical keyboard and mouse, whereas iOS apps are all designed around touchscreen use.

For example, I've been looking for a map program (similar to Google Maps) that runs on a handheld Windows 7 PC with attached GPS. It's surprising how few choices there are that do the basic function of showing your GPS position on a map, and aren't some crusty thing last updated in 2004. True, if I included Windows 8 "Metro" apps there would be a wider choice, but still it is dwarfed by what you get on Android or iOS. (FTR - in the end I went with Anquet Maps for hiking maps and Mapfactor PC-Navigator for city use.)

Comment: Re:One line? (Score 3, Insightful) 169

by Ed Avis (#48234803) Attached to: Tetris Is Hard To Test
It's analogous to testing itself. Testing cannot prove the absence of bugs, though it can find them. Similarly a coverage check cannot show that your test suite is adequate, but it can show it to be inadequate (or perhaps reveal dead code to prune). Nobody is claiming that coverage is the be all and end all of testing. That does not mean it is useless to measure it.

What the world *really* needs is a good Automatic Bicycle Sharpener.

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