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Comment: Re:GIGO (Score 1) 191

by RedWizzard (#47391115) Attached to: IEEE Spectrum Ranks the Top Programming Languages

Whether with programming languages or with studies it's the same: Garbage In, Garbage Out.

Select mobile, and you'll find Objective-C listed 16th, 6 places after MATLAB, and two places after Visual Basic. Which is clearly nonsense.

We already have tried and tested (back to 1989!) rankings for this. And Objective-C is currently number three across the board, never mind just mobile.

The filters are meaningless because they just hide the languages that are not classed as being used in that space, they don't actually measure usage in that space. When you hide all but mobile they're still ranking the languages by overall use, not use in the mobile space. So C# is at 4th despite it having almost no use in the mobile space.


UK Man Sentenced To 16 Months For Exporting 'E-Waste' Despite 91% Reuse 212

Posted by Soulskill
from the be-careful-not-to-solve-problems-without-the-express-consent-of-government dept.
retroworks writes: The Guardian uses a stock photo of obvious electronic junk in its coverage of the sentencing of Joseph Benson of BJ Electronics. But film of the actual containers showed fairly uniform, sorted televisions which typically work for 20 years. In 2013, the Basel Convention Secretariat released findings on a two-year study of the seized sea containers containing the alleged "e-waste," including Benson's in Nigeria, and found 91% of the devices were working or repairable. The study, covered by Slashdot in Feb. 2013, declared the shipments legal, and further reported that they were more likely to work than new product sent to Africa (which may be shelf returns from bad lots, part of the reason Africans prefer used TVs from nations with strong warranty laws).

Director of regulated industry Harvey Bradshaw of the U.K. tells the Guardian: "This sentence is a landmark ruling because it's the first time anyone has been sent to prison for illegal waste exports." But five separate university research projects question what the crime was, and whether prohibition in trade is really the best way to reduce the percentage of bad product (less than 100% waste). Admittedly, I have been following this case from the beginning and interviewed both Benson and the Basel Secretariat Executive Director, and am shocked that the U.K. judge went ahead with the sentencing following the publication of the E-Waste Assessment Study last year. But what do Slashdotters think about the campaign to arrest African geeks who pay 10 times the value of scrap for used products replaced in rich nations?

Comment: Re:Occulus Rift (Score 1) 186

by RedWizzard (#47259897) Attached to: 4K Monitors: Not Now, But Soon

It's not entirely clear that VR is going to displace PC gaming to that significant of a degree.

As a fairly avid gamer, most games I play are not in the first person perspective and I don't want them to be. I don't like FPS, and that's a huge portion of all first-person games... and VR almost implies a first person perspective.

Only if you've got no imagination. What this iteration of VR is bringing is head tracking and that allows massive virtual screens. I think Rift and similar products are going to break into non-gaming market as cost effective way of getting giant flat displays.

Comment: Re:4k at viewing distance isn't that special (Score 1) 304

by RedWizzard (#47085409) Attached to: Is LG's New Ultra Widescreen Display Better Than "Normal" 4K?

Because it's approximately true. Nominal resolution of the human eye is 1 arc-minute (1/60 of a degree), therefore a 1920 pixel wide display will subtend 32 degrees horizontally at the resolution limit. At 9 feet (108 inches), a 62 inch wide screen will subtend 32 degrees horizontally. Since screen sizes are measured on the diagonal, that equates to a 71 inch diagonal.

If that resolution is correct then you shouldn't be able to tell the difference between a 150dpi display and a 300dpi display at 2 feet but I certainly can. I'm not sure the 0.3-0.4 arc-minute figure I quoted in my other reply is really typical but I think most people's vision is better than 1 arc-minute.

Comment: Re:4k at viewing distance isn't that special (Score 1) 304

by RedWizzard (#47085239) Attached to: Is LG's New Ultra Widescreen Display Better Than "Normal" 4K?

Nominal resolution of the human eye is 1 arc-minute (1/60 of a degree)

That is too low. See, e.g. this, which states that the resolvable pixel size is about 0.3-0.4 arc-minutes. Using 0.4 means that at 9 feet any 16:9 1080p screen larger than 28" has resolvable pixels. A 4k screen could be as large as 55" before the pixels are resolvable.

Comment: Re:They've been pushing this angle for a while (Score 1) 362

by RedWizzard (#47022803) Attached to: Should Tesla Make Batteries Instead of Electric Cars?

I don't know why Jeffrey Gundlach is, but see no a priori reason to assume he *isn't* as smart, or smarter, than Elon Musk.

Well for a start he's a bond manager. The great minds of our world create, discover, invent. They don't manage bonds. The fact that he is not seeking out the sorts of intellectual challenges that Musk is, IMHO, evidence that he's not as smart as Musk. Regardless of the business success of Musk's companies, they've managed to solve engineering problems that no one else seems to have done. But, of course, that's irrelevant because he may well have more knowledge/experience/wisdom in the area he's giving advice. I think he could well be right in saying that the battery tech is the real point of difference for Tesla and that they should focus on that exclusively. But I suspect that Musk feels that if he doesn't prove there is a market then other car manufacturers will not take it seriously.

Comment: Re:Safari for iOS lacks support for all these (Score 1) 333

by RedWizzard (#46936817) Attached to: Figuring Out the iPad's Place
The post I replied to claimed you couldn't write *any* software for iOS without a dev subscription. That's false. Of course there are limitations with HTML5, just as there are limitations with any platform. I contend that the limitations are unlikely to be an issue for 95% of people who want to develop something for their phone/tablet but won't pay $100 per year to do it.

Comment: Re:Define personal computer (Score 1) 333

by RedWizzard (#46936801) Attached to: Figuring Out the iPad's Place

To be fair though HTML5 apps, and I run a few of them (Google's gmail app for the ipad for example) aren't anywhere near as smooth as native apps.

True, but for software you're writing for yourself that's probably not a big problem. The poster I replied to claimed you couldn't write and run software on your iOS device without paying the developer subscription. That's simply false, I've done it myself.

Comment: Re:Define personal computer (Score 1) 333

by RedWizzard (#46903589) Attached to: Figuring Out the iPad's Place

You can't write personal software for your iOS device without paying a $100/year subscription. (Well, you can write it, but you can't run it) I'm sorry, I don't want to have to pay a subscription to write software for my own device.

You can write anything you like in HTML5 and run it. In fact many "real" apps are just wrappers for a webkit widget running an HTML5 application.

Comment: Re:It already found its place. (Score 1) 333

by RedWizzard (#46903537) Attached to: Figuring Out the iPad's Place

But it's not a general purpose computer. The small screen, no keyboard and no external ports make it useless for doing any real work. Except for niche applications, it's strictly a content consumption device.

You try to make that sound trivial, but content consumption is what 90% of people use computers for 90% of the time outside of their jobs.

The person who makes no mistakes does not usually make anything.