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Comment: Re:$150,000? (Score 1) 220

by NeumannCons (#47199933) Attached to: NSF Researcher Suspended For Mining Bitcoin
One would hope that the cpu time cost of this supercomputer has been calculated. I.E. How much people are willing to pay for CPU time on similar machines. Or even how much the facilities cost to house and run this computer (power, cooling, operators, building costs, etc). How about total costs amortized over the expected lifetime of the machine?

Of course, we don't know how the cost was calculated and it was probably a number arrived at after appropriate hand waving. And then someone transcribed some numbers when jotting it down, and this is the "amount worth" published.

Comment: Re:the numbers are wrong (Score 2) 373

by NeumannCons (#38613256) Attached to: US Report Sees Perils To America's Tech Future
2015 - intel/ms produce all goods in China - the computer sent to the US
2020 - intel/ms declare bankruptcy. Chinese companies produce all parts and software, computer sent to the US

The problem is not just the assembly cost, which is in fact marginal. The problem is the costs all down the supply chain. All the components inside, say, an Ipod are made in China. All the profits made producing and selling those items stay in China. I don't think you could even produce a computer in the US today. You'd have to get and ship all your parts from Asia. Hard drives, memory, displays, discrete components - all made overseas. The huge support base for producing all electronics have moved overseas. If a $200 Ipod costs Apple $150 in parts, $10 assembly/packaging/shipping and $40 profit, that's still $150 that flowed into Chinese economy - not the US economy.

Prototyping and design used to be done here. It's now easier to get the engineering talent overseas where engineers have access and contact with the people producing the actual parts they need to use in their own products. We've lost the production capability, we're about to lose knowledge about how to even create the devices we invented.

Comment: Put yourself in their shoes (Score 5, Informative) 173

by NeumannCons (#38138078) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Which Ph.D For Work In Applied Statistics / C.S.?
You're hiring a someone to be a computer scientist. Would you rather see them have a CS degree or a biology degree? Ivy League degree or Pretty Good European University? I think everyone is going to look at this differently. I know *I'd* rather see the CS degree. I wouldn't be overly impressed by Ivy League but I think a lot of others would be. I work in the the tech field along with people who have degrees in unusual areas (Dance?) but are technically top notch.

BTW, these days it seems a lot of resumes are searched for key words. If they're hiring a computer scientist - guess what keywords they're going to look for?

Comment: Take the job (Score 1) 735

by NeumannCons (#37639016) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Does Being 'Loyal' Pay As a Developer?
I've seen many people who seemed extremely critical leave. Once we had someone leave who convinced a couple of others to jump as well. Others fill in the gap (amazing how quickly some people learn when they *really* need to), new talent is hired. Take the new job, enjoy the 7.5 hours a week of more time, invest the money and meet your old pals at the pub.

Comment: Re:just go all the way and uninstall Mcafee (Score 1) 213

by NeumannCons (#37611972) Attached to: Firefox Advises Users To Disable McAfee Plugin
I think that in addition to the virus detection code there's a *larger* amount of "valid paid-up subscription" nag code. The memory footprint of these things is truly stunning and kills machine's performance. Microsoft's Security Essentials used to be pretty lightweight but it's hitting middle age weight gain. At least it's not intrusive and doesn't nag you to pay up since it's free.

Comment: Print screen (Score 1) 306

by NeumannCons (#34944946) Attached to: Facebook Images To Get Expiration Date
I agree that there are a lot of reasons why this is unlikely to more forward.

From a technical standpoint though, in Windows, you can make a plug-in that will prevent "print screen" from working on/"seeing" certain areas of the screen. Fire up Windows Media player. Start any movie, hit print screen and then see what you got by pasting it into something. You'll notice you'll get the media player window with a nice black box for the content. I also remember Windows being able to do that with IE when they first started their Terraserver project - the imagery was somehow copyrighted and you could look at it, but attempting to copy it or print it resulted in an image with the word copyright repeated over and over and no satellite image.

Of course this won't prevent anyone determined enough to reverse engineer the way the plugin works and then design a workaround. It would however prevent the casual user (probably about 99% of the facebook population) from simply using print-screen or copying the image and mailing it to a friend.

Comment: How to test for something you know nothing about? (Score 1) 810

by NeumannCons (#34787528) Attached to: Running Your Own Ghost Investigation?
Has anyone ever been able to definitely prove the presence of a ghost? Houdini was rather well known for his attempts at contacting his mother through seances but was never able to find a clairvoyant who was real. Quite a few "ghost shows" are on TV where the "investigators" get all worked up about something quite ordinary ("Ooooh - look - only part of this chair is warm - someone was sitting here in the last hour!!! OMG get a thermal picture of it - this is too weird - I'm freaking out!!!!"). Yet these shows never find anything remotely mystifying.

So you're left with the task of proving/disproving the presence of something you and everyone else knows nothing about - much less how to test for the presence of it. Do they affect magnetic fields? Do they emit light? Do they make noise? Do they alter the temperature of the air around them? Are they affected by unlicensed nuclear accelerators? For ghosts, the answer would have to be "maybe". For humans, the answer for every question is "yes" (yes, we do emit very faint light). So if you do detect something, it's almost certain it's not a ghost, but rather a human.

Comment: Re:We couldn't get it to play from the Times Union (Score 3, Funny) 133

by NeumannCons (#32616144) Attached to: 80-Year-Old Edison Recording Resurrected
They've pulled the beta off of their website. They received a letter from the lawyers representing the estate of Edison. The lawyers clients are claiming ownership of the ip rights to all pallotophone codecs and pallotophone encryption/decryption algorithms. Said counsel for Bubba Edison - Mr. G. R. White, "Mr. Edison is seeking to ride on his Great Grandfathers coat tails -we aim to help him since that's the right thing to do - and the fact that he's paying us lots of money". Mr. White was not immediately available for comment as he was participating in a feeding frenzy.

Comment: Re:XP is productive (Score 1) 1213

by NeumannCons (#32515930) Attached to: Time To Dump XP?
Mod parent up!

Linux has about a dozen different AV products, commercial as well as free. Wikipedia claims about 800 variants of Linux malware although it does not identify the percentage found in the wild.

Linux has it's roots from Unix which has been the genesis for such fun stuff as rootkits. Who can forget the Morris worm which brought down most Unix systems connected to the Internet in 1988. And now with the ability to install a malware hypervisor onto a machine, it doesn't even matter which OS you run -- no OS is safe.

Comment: Will license the "technology" (Score 4, Funny) 81

by NeumannCons (#32245290) Attached to: Microsoft To Pay $200M In Patent Dispute
I've always loved how at the end of a patent dispute, the company who's lost to the patent holder, agrees "to license the 'technology'. After the money is paid out, I wonder if there's really anything that gets passed back... Code samples? Flowcharts? Theory of operations? Punch cards? I would guess in most cases zip gets transferred - and not the compression algorithm...

Company1 - "Yeah, hi, this is Bob at company X - we recently licensed your technology that allows people to use a mouse to interact with a computation unit in a way that allows the computation unit to perform a useful task. We'd like to get the relevant documentation?"

Company2 - "Um, docs. Huh - never thought of that - I mean it's never come up... Wow, I guess you could read the patent application - that's the only docs we got. BTW, would you like to purchase rights to allow the mouse to instruct the computation unit to perform a useless task? We got a special going on this week for that..."

Comment: Re:What exactly happened? (Score 1) 171

by NeumannCons (#31795270) Attached to: Chinese ISP Hijacks the Internet (Again)
Sort of. EIGRP is a routing protocol used within an organization (Interior Gateway Protocol or IGP). BGP is the routing protocol used between organizations (Exterior Gateway Protocol or EGP). So you may be running EIGRP (or OSPF, RIP2, etc) within your company but speaking BGP to the other companies your connected to. Also, while there are several IGPs, for all practical purposes, there's only one EGP (BGP). It functions similarly to other routing protocols, using metrics to detmine the best routes to other networks. If it advertises a better route to reach a network, everyone is going to start sending traffic destined for that network to them.

This concludes our lesson for TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms).

The end of labor is to gain leisure.