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Meet Apache Software Foundation VP Rich Bowen (Video) 13

Posted by Roblimo
from the a-patchy-server-rules-the-online-world dept.
Apache is behind a huge percentage of the world's websites, and the Apache Software Foundation is the umbrella organization that provides licensing and stucture for open source projects ranging from the Apache Web server to Apache OpenOffice to small utilities that aren't household names but are often important to a surprising number of people and companies. Most of us never get to meet the people behind groups like the Apache Software Foundation -- except today we tag along with Tim Lord at OSCON and chat with Apache Software Foundation Executive Vice President Rich Bowen -- who is also Red Hat's OpenStack Community Liason. (Alternate Video Link) Update: 07/30 22:23 GMT by T : Note that Bowen formerly served as Slashdot sister site SourceForge's Community Manager, too.

A Look At the Firepick Delta Circuit Board Assembler (Video) 43

Posted by Roblimo
from the components-get-tinier-every-year dept.
From the Firepick website: 'We are developing a really cool robotic machine that is capable of assembling electronic circuit boards (it also 3D prints, and does some other stuff!). It uses a vacuum nozzle to pick really tiny resistors and computer chips up, and place them down very carefully on a printed circuit board.' There are lots of companies here and in China that will happily place and solder components on your printed circuit board, but hardly any that will do a one-off prototype or a small quantity. And the components have gotten small enough that this is really a job for a robot (or at least a Waldo), not human fingers. || There are obviously other devices on the market that do this, but Firepick Delta creator Neil Jansen says they are far too expensive for small companies, let alone individual makers.

The Firepick Delta Hackaday page talks about a $300 price for this machine. That may be too optimistic, but even if it ends up costing two or three times that amount, that's still a huge step forward for small-time inventors and custom manufacturers who need to populate just a few circuit boards, not thousands. They have a Haxlr8r pitch video, and have been noticed by TechCrunch,, and Adafruit, just to name a few. Kickstarter? Not yet. Maybe next year. Open source? Totally, complete with GitHub repository. And they were at OSCON 2014, which is where Timothy found them. (Alternate Video Link)

Comment: what happened to the Voronoi polyhedrons? (Score 1) 40

by 140Mandak262Jamuna (#47552729) Attached to: How Bird Flocks Resemble Liquid Helium
Last time the bird flock was mentioned it was about how a flock flies past an obstacle without colliding. Something about each bird maintaining its position by maximizing the distance to its nearest neighbors. The math would work out such that each bird would form a vertex in a Delaunay tessellation and the "space" associated with each bird would form a Voronoi polyhedron.

I was kind of scared. You know, you spend all your life learning computational geometry and suddenly a flock of shearwaters or starlings show up and solve the same problem you have been solving for decades. You are given the pink slip and be replaced by a flock of bird brains. Man! that would suck.

But I am glad now, the birds are after bigger prize. No stupid engineering and mesh generation for them. They want pure science and may be they are after the Nobel prize. Glad they have moved on to simulating the liquid helium. Good for them. I think next thing will be they have solved the Cauchy-Riemman integral and they have a deterministic solution to Shroedinger's equation. They are going to finish off with a solution to Navier-Stokes equation with k-epsilon turbulence modeling.

Comment: India has disputed borders too. (Score 1) 95

I have seen numerous Govt offices in India with a rusted metal sign saying, "Photography prohibited". But cut them some slack too, routinely attacked by terrorists looking for soft targets.

Also the border is disputed with Pakistan and China. Since Pakistan has been the "ally" of USA since 1950s, and India kept dallying with USSR all those days, almost all the American magazines will carry maps that show disputed parts of Kashmir as part of Pakistan. I have seen so many Reader's Digest, Time, National Geographic, Life mags with maps of Kashmir region stamped with, "This map does not agree with the official map published by the Surveyor General of India. No significance may be attached to the differences published here. " (quoting from memory, actual wording could be even more bureaucratese ).


A Credit Card-Sized, Arduino-Based Game Device (Video) 33

Posted by Roblimo
from the not-quite-nanotech-but-moving-in-that-direction dept.
Slashdot's Tim Lord was cruising the halls at OSCON, where he spotted Kevin Bates and his tiny Arduino-based device, called the Arduboy. On Kevin's sales page, he says the games it can run include, "Space Rocks, Snake, Flappy Ball, Chess, Breakout, and many more...The most exciting one could be made by you!" || His work with Arduboy got Kevin invited to the recent White House Maker Faire, where he rubbed shoulders (and shot selfies with) Bill Nye the Science Guy, from the Black Eyed Peas, and Arduino creator Massimo Banzi. || Does Kevin have a Kickstarter in the works? There's nothing about Arduboy on, and given the Arduboy's simplicity and low price (currently $50), plus stories about it everywhere from to engadget to Slashdot, he may not need any financing or capital to make his idea succeed. (Alternate Video Link)

Comment: Looks like it is market opportunity. (Score 1) 531

I too like slide out keyboard and I like seeing more of the screen while typing.

But are we so dependent on the manufacturer for this? Someone can design a compact bluetooth keyboard. With some kind of harness/clip to slide in any smartphone. Or make it part of a slide out or fold out phone case. Almost all the people I know buy a case for their phones. I think Steve Jobs was probably the only one who used a naked iPhone. I see people putting really horrendous looking cases. Would these guys buy an after market Hummer body and strap it on to their Corvettes? Well that is a different rant. I use a fold out leather wallet style case, to store a credit card, a bus pass and my driving license along with an android phone. My wallet has gone into some deep recess of my backpack. I rarely need it.

Anyway if there is as much demand for it someone would be stepping in to fill the need. One good thing, this keyboard might work in the next phone, at least one part of the phone/keyboard gets an extended life.

Comment: In conclusion... (Score 1) 281

Finally, we see a big limitation: This data reveals only correlations, not conclusions. We are left with at least two different interpretations of the sudden spike in “iPhone slow” queries, one conspiratorial and one benign. It is tempting to say, “See, this is why big data is useless.” But that is too trite. Correlations are what motivate us to look further. If all that big data does — and it surely does more — is to point out interesting correlations whose fundamental reasons we unpack in other ways, that already has immense value.

And if those correlations allow conspiracy theorists to become that much more smug, that’s a small price to pay.

And the cost is going to be paid by some company or the other for the benefit of some class action house or another.

Comment: Graph is search results, not speed measurements. (Score 3, Informative) 281

The methodology of testing the hypothesis is to look for google searches about "iphone slow" or "samsung slow". Assumption made is if people search for "iphone slow" Apple might have done something to slow down iPhones. The control group is Samsung which has the same motive as Apple but not the means because it does not control the OS.

It is a big leap, there could be various other explanations of varying degrees of malice. As the new release comes through, bug fixes for older releases are put on back burner, apps are changed and tuned to take advantage of new version run slower in older version.. Or the way graphics subsystem is organized in iOS might have different bottlenecks based on the display resolution. So as new releases come in, default sizes for buffers and hashtables might change deep in the OS slowing down older apps.

And if you are going to postulate "Apple might slow down older versions deliberately", why can't you postulate, "Google might spike and skew the history of the past searches to make Apple look bad"?

Comment: I must be a coding superstar (Score 1) 157

by 140Mandak262Jamuna (#47541053) Attached to: Soccer Superstar Plays With Very Low Brain Activity
My brain activity is abysmally low when I am coding. I must be engaging hardly 5% of my brain during coding. Often times when I am debugging my own code, "what the hell was I *thinking*?" But now I realize I must not have been thinking at all. I must have been a coding superstar unbeknownst to myself.

Comment: Re:Could be a different route involved for the VPN (Score 4, Insightful) 394

If I offer to sell you "unlimited" beers from my fridge for $50 a month, but I only resupply it at a rate of one six-pack per week, I have intentionally cheated you. That basic relationship doesn't magically change because of some hand-waving technobabble about peerage agreements and network congestion.

This analogy is a little flawed. Let me correct it. Let us say the local municipality has granted pla (258480) a local monopoly in selling beer to its residents. And you sell beer at different service level all unlimited number of trips to the fridge, but at 1 trip/hr, 1trip/6 hours, 1 trip/min, 1 trip/sec etc. And you stock it with brewed-by-your-local-sewage-company beer all the time, and stock Buds, Coors and Coronas one bottle a month. Then your analogy is complete.

What is really insidious is, pla is NOT buying any beer. All the beer companies come stock the fridge for free. Pla's only cost is keeping the beer cool. And it does not cost any more to cool a bottle of Corona than to cool a bottle of brew-from-sewer. Just because pla noticed people are drinking Corona more, pla wants Corona to pay him more money. Remember it is a monopoly. Corona has no other way of selling its beer without going through pla's fridge. Now you get the idea.

Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance? -- Charlie McCarthy