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Comment: Re:"There's zero benefit a consumer gets from that (Score 1) 47

by Erich (#46693911) Attached to: Qualcomm Announces Next-Gen Snapdragon 808 and 810 SoCs
So these cores with the arm V8 architecture add:
  • More registers (16->32)
  • DP SIMD
  • New instructions for crypto

and a handfull of other things. But all of the above aren't really benefits of 64 bitness, just the improvements to the architecture. The real benefit of a 64 bit architecture is the larger virtual address space... processes with >2-3 GB of memory. Every other improvement is usually just improvements that could have been added in 32-bit mode but they threw into 64 bit arch. Similar with x86-64.

Comment: Glad to hear it! (Score 1) 392

by Erich (#46541949) Attached to: The Myth of the Science and Engineering Shortage
Now come here and show us the stack of qualified, talented people for these open positions we have? Oh, wait, you're not actually trying to hire people? Maybe you mean there's no shortage of people writing crap on the Internet?

My total compensation as a qualified Engineer is similar to the average compensation for a doctor. I think that's reasonable. It's very hard to fill positions right now.

Comment: Because it's like Literacy. (Score 5, Insightful) 158

by Erich (#46204971) Attached to: Non-Coders As the Face of the Learn-to-Code Movements
Because being able to use logic to write instructions that are correct and unambiguous is a skill that everyone should learn. And basically that's what coding is.

It's like literacy or numeracy or basic understanding of science. You have a problem as a culture if it is culturally acceptable to say "I can't do math" or "I can't understand written language" or "I have no idea about the universe around me or how people go about understanding it" or "I can't read or write logical directions."

Do you expect everyone to be a best-selling novelist (or a writer that is enjoyed for all history?) No.

Do you expect everyone to be the next Ramanujan? No.

Do you expect everyone to be the next Knuth? No.

But it is expected that everyone have basic skills in these kinds of things. It's just necessary to understand the world. If you don't understand these kinds of things -- if you don't have basic skills in language or mathematics or logic -- then you are at a disadvantage in modern society.

I group computer science'logic here separate from Mathematics. Perhaps it shouldn't be. But having a population that doesn't understand things like this shuold be considered as problematic as a population that can not read and write.

Comment: The driver is responsible. (Score 1) 937

by Erich (#45908157) Attached to: Who Is Liable When a Self-Driving Car Crashes?
If you are driving, you are responsible.

A car that drives itself is responsible for itself.

Who pays in the event of an accident is the driver. In this case, the car. Probably the manufacturer would be liable.

Manufacturers will probably get insurance for the car when driven autonomously. If self-driving cars are safer, this should be a lower insurance rate than you pay now. Additionally, self-driving cars will probably have sensor input that will prove/disprove fault.

Comment: Re:ARM computers (Score 5, Insightful) 321

by Erich (#44814747) Attached to: Intel's Haswell Chips Pushing Windows RT Into Oblivion
Woah. Woah. Woah. Woah. Woah.

I will let people crap all over a post that's basically regurgitating Intel Developer Forum drivel, and I'm certainly not going to say that WinRT has a future.

But I will NOT let you trash talk Alpha.

The Alpha was simply a much better processor than anything from Intel at the time. It was pretty much the fastest out there, though you might argue with some high end POWER or MIPS 10K or something.

Maybe you were running Windows and x86 programs on the Alpha? Those weren't blazing. But native Alpha programs were fast fast fast. And the architecture is clean and beautiful. Just beautiful.

So you can say that ARM has not much advantage over x86 today. That's probably true. You can say that ARM sucks, has too much complexity, and the system architecture is an abomination. That's probably true also. But you leave the Alpha out of your talk unless you know what the hell you're talking about.

Comment: Re:SPOILERS (Score 1) 1233

by slamb (#44664377) Attached to: Don't Fly During Ramadan

Explosive test comes up positive in an airport and you wonder why they react strongly? You truly are a fuckwit.

They have false positives. My Ortlieb roller bags tested positive after a month-long bicycling trip. Could have been the construction of the bag, could have been the Tanzanian dirt throughly embedded in everything by then, who knows. It didn't come directly into contact with anything combustible, much less explosive. Apparently soap/lotions can cause false positives. And of course, ammonium nitrate (the explosive used in the Oklahoma City bombings) is more commonly called "fertilizer". So, no, they shouldn't be reacting so strongly. They should know that it's likely a false positive.

Comment: Re:Watching the video (Score 1) 127

by Erich (#44575385) Attached to: The Grasshopper Can Fly Sideways
Your "1ST rule of Rocket Engineering" can also be stated: You always develop sub-optimal rockets.

Seems like a stupid rule to me.

If an engine goes out, or there is some other problem, you need extra fuel to accomplish the mission (increased gravity drag). So you have some extra fuel and extra delta v, and that's a good thing.

But if those events are rare -- and, eventually, they should be -- then you often have extra fuel. If you can use that fuel to return the craft intact to reuse and make more money, then I think that's a damn good idea. If you must burn the extra fuel, then you will lose the stage. It will cost the company more, but "less profit" is maybe an OK choice.

The goal is to optimize cost while maintaining very high reliability. For very high reliability, you need to understand worst case behavior. For optimizing cost, you need to make the common case cost efficient. Having extra delta v for anomalies and using that delta v to lower launch cost (via reuse) when no problems arise seems like smart engineering to me.

Comment: Do you have a CLEARANCE, Clarence? (Score 1) 207

You probably have a clearance. This is very valuable to many employers. Make sure you have that at the top of your resume.

Seriously, though, Clearance + EE is quite valuable. If you're worried about seeming "rusty" on the engineering side, get a MSEE from some university... a lot of very good universities have distance programs where you might be able to get started early.

Comment: Re:Speed based on heat is a feature? (Score 1) 126

by slamb (#44118909) Attached to: AMD Overhauls Open-Source Linux Driver

A compute rate that varies with temperature would seem to be a bug, rather than a feature. I don't want a GPU that does that. I need repeatable Gazebo simulations.

I think they're talking about the opposite (a temperature that depends on load), which your CPU has probably been doing for a long, long time.

But you've lost this one, anyway; modern Intel processors have Turbo Boost, meaning the performance does indeed depend on temperature. I was scared, too, from a worst-case provisioning perspective in an environment where I can't predict what will be running on other cores. But I've had a couple years to come to terms with it, and in practice, it doesn't actually seem any worse than other factors like last-level cache contention.

Comment: Re:Another false dichotomy (Score 1) 434

by Khomar (#43942277) Attached to: Fear of Death Makes People Into Believers (of Science)

Absolutely. Actually, I believe that science works through God in that it is God who established and maintains the physical laws that we see. After all, where did they come from, and what keeps them running? So my faith in science is rooted in my faith in God and His faithfulness to keep the natural world around me running just like He did yesterday and the day before, etc. Science is therefore the study of God's faithfulness. He is so reliable that we can create formulas based upon it.

You can not get anything worthwhile done without raising a sweat. -- The First Law Of Thermodynamics

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