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Comment Re:Stupid (Score 1) 220

Yep, stupid. While there is an interesting mental excercise about an optimum design being once that worked flawlessly until the day it falls apart into dust, it misses the point. Given the hundreds of electronic components and many millions of transistors in a phone it is amazing they work in the first place, let alone trying to shave tolerances so they fail predictably.

Cell phone companies torture their devices all along the design process to see what fails early. The suppliers get their skulls cracked (or worse) for failures even during early builds and often there is very little or no cost or weight increase to be more robust, often it is simply a matter of figuring out how to properly test the sub-component to replicate a phone level stress event. ESD strikes are notoriously hard to replicate accurately at the sub-component level as an example.

Screens should be replaceable more easily then they are, as they are a major wear item, similarly it would be nice if the micro-USB's could be more easily replaced. For test equipment we often put sacrificial connectors onto instruments the day they come out of the box, and only remove them for truly important measurements. Similarly, a socketed micro-USB that could be user replaced when worn would be great. Either that or have the promise of wireless charging actually come to pass...

Comment Re:And remember kids (Score 1) 258

If you are flexible when negotiating and make it clear you value other things it can make it easier for HR or the hiring manager to meet your needs.

Often the easiest thing for HR to adjust during hiring is vacation. An extra week or two can be worth 2-5% to you, but not actually show up as a salary increase. Similarly you can negotiate for stock options, or bonus percentage that often does not require escalation for approval.

Just negotiating a higher salary often results in tiny raises until you come in line with your co-workers, but vacation sticks around.

Comment Re:When hardware must just work (Score 5, Interesting) 122

I work on ASIC design, though I am on the Analog side of things. There are more people doing verification than design by roughly 2:1. I am told that in the smaller nodes and more complex designs that the ratio is even higher. Basically you can slap down some RTL code (verilog or VHDL) quickly, but torturing it through all exceptions is very hard. Then you have to synthesize and build it, which can introduce all sorts of timing and parastic kinds of problems that have to be double checked. Finally test vectors have to be created to double check the functionality of every transistor in the design to assure that what was built matches the masks.

It is truly phenominal that anything with Billions of gates ever works at all, let alone with the high yield and relatively low error count we have come to expect.

Comment Re:Lack of competition (Score 5, Insightful) 122

If you saw the actual errata list for processors on launch day, regardless of manufacturer, your jaw would drop. A lot of nasties get cleaned up on subsequent revisions (mask changes), but in the meantime patches show up for the BIOS, libraries, and compilers so that the user never sees the warts. With Billions of transistors there will be design errors that even intel will not catch during verification or characterization. The fact that a BIOS fix will take care of it is a sign that it is not that egregious.

If you want to avoid this kind of stuff you should wait a few months after any major shakeup to buy.

Comment Re:Not gonna happen. (Score 1) 428

Flying has long been in a different category. Special rules have long applied including searching you with metal detectors, screening your bags (or just stealing all the good stuff out), and you lose a lot of rights while in the air. While regrettable, this is just an incremental change, albeit for the worse.

Comment Re:This brings us one step closer to many things (Score 1) 428

Passports are rather expensive and can take months to get. I don't have much of an objection to using my passport to travel, but they need to be issued for a reasonable price in a reasonable time frame. I hide my passport until I need to go international because the darn thing cost almost $200 in total to get and took a month with the expediting charges.

Comment Re:Ironically... (Score 3, Insightful) 141

I read the article you linked, and frankly it left me scratching my head. I think he managed to write a book about censorship unintentionally, as it was the only way to get to his real point about the perils of television. When I read the book I found the whole picture walls thing to be secondary rather than primary. Maybe he pulled a Homer?

It would be like finding Orwell's diary and finding out he thought 1984 was about the perils of video cameras rather than government control, propaganda, and surveillance (to badly simplify).

Comment Re:They already won. (Score 1) 954

I don't give a flying crap what religion he is. Frankly I think it does a disservice to story by featuring it.

Should we throw "Christian", or "Athiest" into the headline whenever some poor kid get gunned down by a cop? It adds no value unless relevant. So unless someone's religion was important to the events, I would rather it be left out of the headline and story.

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