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Comment Re:If you have physical access... (Score 1) 66 66

It doesn't really mean that, though that helps. It means that at some point you must have had a way to inject your software onto it. That might mean physical access to the computer. Or it might mean physical access to the operating system image before it was loaded onto the computer. Or it might mean physical access to the bespoke software image before it was loaded onto the computer.

One scenario, for example. You work for a company that produces software to control lottery random number machines. You insert, suitably obfuscated, code working on this principle into the software before release. The code is audited, but as all eyes are on modules relating to the retrieval and display of the random number, your code is largely ignored and just assumed to be poorly written, not evil, per-se.

Your accomplice then gets a job as a janitor at SuperMegaBall HQ, one of your clients. They're able to use a cellphone to extract the secure login credentials, which you then crack, and said accomplice is then able to gain full access to the computer with the credentials and upload a software update that'll give you the numbers you want.

This is so foolproof I could work as the scriptwriter for "Scorpion". *kills myself*

Comment Re:How soon until x86 is dropped? (Score 1) 143 143

I'm not sure I've heard anyone suggest ARM is superior. It happens to be fulfilling a good niche as an architecture that provides decent performance per watt. But you're not seeing anyone wanting to use it in areas where power isn't a concern.

I suspect ARM will eventually be the architecture that's supplanted, not ix86 or ix86-64. Intel's getting good at producing low power ix86 family CPUs - I have one in my tablet, and the mobile space isn't really wedded to any architecture, but the desktop space is.

Comment Re:Update Clashes (Score 1) 310 310

You know, it kinda makes sense, but given that I've had months where I've been unable to play a specific game or two (without turning off various features that severely degrade performance) because "the latest driver" from AMD/ATI has had one issue or another, with no bug fixes available short of running the unsupported beta version, the idea of being forced to upgrade a driver that is currently not causing any problems is a definitely negative to me.

It'd be one thing if display card drivers were always being updated to fix bugs/security holes, but in practice, 99% of the updates I see are actually to support new cards (which isn't something I need or want a software update for), or to fiddle with the hardware optimization in theory to improve performance (which might be useful, but there's no reason to force such an update on people.)

Windows Update needs the ability to "pin" versions much as apt-get does. For security updates, fine, force them, but if an update is solely there to "improve performance" - or will have no affect whatsoever, it absolutely needs to be blockable.

Comment Re:How about this... (Score 1, Informative) 180 180

They might cut their bandwidth cost in half. Computational cost for each video will possibly increase

You'll be surprised what can be done with a codec like MPEG-1 if you have unlimited computational power. Much of the point of better codecs is to reduce the computational power needed to achieve a substantial reduction in bandwidth for a given level of quality. So while it'll likely increase, the amount is unlikely to be substantial, not even a doubling of processing power.

Comment Re:How about this... (Score 1) 180 180

Google has gone out of their way to invest in video codecs to ensure there are non-encumbered standards that are in the same ballpark as H.264. There will always be incentive to improve bandwidth by producing better codecs.

I suspect actually that patents are holding back codecs, not helping. Who wants to innovate in that space if you know that whatever you end up with is likely going to be crippled with other people's patents given you'll have to build on the work of others to make something affective?

Comment Re:They do it because of VR (Score 1) 180 180

I get the impression H.265 isn't good enough given what you suggest it needs to do. It's only a 50% reduction in bandwidth compared to H.264. The fact Carmack can just casually announce he's dropping support suggests that the industry itself didn't see it as much more than a convenience.

Comment Re:This legislation brought to you by.. (Score 1) 446 446

You perhaps should read the article you noted. Bowman didn't buy something advertised as "Not Monsanto", in fact he deliberately bought seed that had been advertised as not for planting, by someone he knew was using transgenic seed.

Like I said, every time I hear someone bitching about Monsanto, and then look into it, I find the supportable party is the latter.

Comment Re:It's a good thing for people who aren't aggresi (Score 1) 428 428

The reason you're seeing new packaging with slightly smaller sizes isn't some conspiracy to help the government cover up inflation (why?), but because of an opposite fact: Wal-Mart has gone seriously into groceries lately and is treating its suppliers the same way it treats non-grocery suppliers. It expects businesses to sell to it at a loss.

Problem is that margins for grocery suppliers are already razor thin. So they're trying to match Wal-mart's price demands by reducing the cost of each product, which, in this case, means changing the quantities per package.

Usually, though not always, the strange quantities do not make their way into real supermarkets like Publix. But occasionally they do - sometimes it's easier to just sell one product, and you notice, and you think it's a conspiracy.

Inflation by any real measure is static or going down. A gallon of milk cost around $4.20 six months ago. It's approx $3.50 here now. A gallon of concentrated orange juice was $5 six months ago, now it's $4 (and I'm not talking sale prices.)

You don't notice these things because you never notice when things go down in price as much as when they go up. When things go up you worry about whether you can afford to continue eating what you eat. When they go down, you think "Oh, that's nice" and carry on.

Real programs don't eat cache.