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Comment: Google & ISC have MeasurementLab.NET (Score 2) 294

by Hobart (#48105041) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: An Accurate Broadband Speed Test?

The Network Diagnostic Test was able to see performance problems on my cablemodem connection that Ookla's speedtests did not.

http://www.measurementlab.net/...

Unfortunately, the number of ridiculous hoops you need to go through to let an unsigned Java applet run an arbitrary network I/O makes it much less useful.

Comment: Re:Graphics appear to be closed/proprietary. (Score 2) 106

From the Matchstick SDK download agreement: (abridged)

4. Restrictions. You agree not to exploit ... content provided to you as a Registered Matchstick Developer, in any unauthorized way ... other than for authorized purposes. Copyright and other intellectual property laws protect ... content provided to you, and you agree to abide by and maintain all notices, license information, and restrictions contained therein. You may not decompile, reverse engineer, disassemble, attempt to derive the source code of any software or software components of the Matchstick software including the Matchstick SDK software.

"Open Source Hardware" ?

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. — Inigo Montoya

Comment: Graphics appear to be closed/proprietary. (Score 5, Informative) 106

The Rockchip 3066 appears to use ARM's proprietary Mali T-series graphics. No, thanks.

Quote from the dev lead on the Mali graphics:

"I really do understand your frustration and I'm sorry that this makes life harder for you and similar developers. We are genuinely not against Open Source, as I hope I've tried to explain. I myself spent a long time working on the Linux kernel in the past and I wish I could give you a simple answer. Unfortunately, it is a genuinely complex problem, with a lot of trade-offs and judgements to be made as well as economic and legal issues. Ultimately I cannot easily reduce this to an answer here, and probably not to one that will satisfy you. Rest assured that you are not being ignored. However, as a relatively small company with a business model that is Partner driven, the resources that we have, need to be applied to projects in ways that meet Partner requirements."
(2014-09) ARM Still Not Doing Open Drivers

Comment: Proprietary firmware blob? (Score 5, Informative) 106

From the Kickstarter page, the computer they are trying to fund is going to be based around a Rockchip 3066 SoC.

Will this have the same proprietary blob required to function / use video like the various Broadcom (Videocore in Raspberry Pi) / Marvell chips are stuck with?

If so, it's not actually Free/Open hardware, because that mystery embedded RTOS can do anything to my system at any time. If Mozilla and/or Matchstick are working with Rockchip (or whomever Rockchip licenses their cores from) to fully document the toolchain, I'd be delighted. (I'm not holding my breath.)

I don't just want a Free and open-source graphics device driver, I want the full documented toolchain for everything on the chip.

Comment: Re:What if there isn't any truth out there? (Score 1) 93

by tyen (#47123685) Attached to: Hunt Intensifies For Aliens On Kepler's Planets

The numbers work out for habitat-stealing if interstellar travel involved some quirk of technology that made dropping back into a gravity well somehow attractive at the end of the trip.

From what we can extrapolate given our current rudimentary state of technology, we think that if you can work out interstellar travel, then Iain Banks' popularized Culture series take on the matter is probably correct: that is, interstellar travel necessarily solves space habitat issues as a precondition. And once you have an interstellar-travel-grade space habitat, it is only the eccentrics who want to drop back down a gravity well.

Comment: School Missed An Opportunity Here (Score 1) 1010

by tyen (#45600257) Attached to: EV Owner Arrested Over 5 Cents Worth of Electricity From School's Outlet
The school could have stepped in and said they have informally allowed it (thus graciously letting this guy off the hook), but now that it has become a big deal, they'll print up $30 per year tags to hang on the rear view mirror that gives parents the right to charge during school operating hours. Win for the school: they get to tap a small revenue source (but every little bit helps), and get to look progressive with parents that have the disposable income to choose EV's. Win for the parents: they get to top off during school events that they attend.

Comment: Re:But that wouldn't have had the leverage (Score 0) 293

by Alex Belits (#45547701) Attached to: Microsoft May Finally Put Windows RT Out To Pasture

Oh but they tried that in the past -- those products had a consistent result of killing the whole market segment then themselves.

1. Windows CE PDAs -- almost completely replaced healthy PDA-oriented OS due to Windows name, then wiped out the first generation of non-phone PDAs due to being absolutely inadequate in all ways possible. Survivors were iPAQ (Windows CE/Mobile), Palm (PalmOS), Visor (PalmOS), Blackberry (Blackberry OS, a phone but from PDA generation).

2. Windows Mobile phones -- sold to carriers, disappointed users, lost all market to dumbphones and Symbian-based Nokia, then completely wiped out by iPhone.

3. Windows Phone phones -- Survive by being produced by zombified Nokia, can't get any presence on the market due to iPhone and Android competition.

4. Windows RT tablets -- No one bought them in the first place.

Comment: Re:Fine with me (Score -1) 274

by Alex Belits (#44530469) Attached to: Microsoft Will Squeeze Datacenters On Price of Windows Server

If anything, competition from Microsoft causes people to hastily add features and polished look while infesting their products with boatloads of bugs and painting themselves into a corner as far as technology development is concerned. The best projects are those that ignore Microsoft completely, Linux among them.

Comment: Re:The key to consumer based gear (Score 1) 241

by tyen (#44278953) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Enterprise Level Network Devices For Home Use?
Are you talking about something like a bench top supply, or just a high quality AC wall wart adapter replacement? If the former, sure they'll supply clean power for the price, but if the latter, please post some brands that you have had good experience with over the years. These days if I'm lazy I'll just order one from adafruit, or just grab the first switching wall wart adapter that meets my specs from mouser or digikey; are there specific brands that are known for high quality, reliability, and durability?

It's time to boot, do your boot ROMs know where your disk controllers are?

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