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Comment Re:beta tester now? (Score 1) 201

Well, for the last month I've had my Mini which just sits there as an iTunes server run out of memory. Never happened before.

Trying to watch a bit with Activity Monitor, the kernel_task balloons up over 4Gb, Finder shows as non-responsive, the File Cache is only around 1Gb -- and "Compressed" is huge. Free memory the last time I caught it was about 16Mb out of 16Gb.

Given its role, I expect the File Cache to grow -- but either it isn't or Activity Monitor isn't reporting it as such, as it only shows a few Gb in normal operation and doesn't show at all when the problem state is hit. And even if it did eat all the RAM for caching -- if it can't shrink it down without hanging all the user processes then that's certainly a bug.

Otherwise, my assumption is that something is leaking in the kernel over time so the system can't find it to clean it up, everything else gets shrunk/compressed as it can and the reclamation hogs the processor in the worst case. Again, haven't seen this before Mavericks and based on some support threads, I don't think I'm alone.


Environmentalists Propose $50 Billion Buyout of Coal Industry - To Shut It Down 712

cartechboy writes "What's $50 billion among friends, right? At least Felix Kramer and Gil Friend are thinking big, so there is that. The pair have published an somewhat audacious proposal to spend $50 billion dollars to buy up and then shut down every single private and public coal company operating in the United States. The scientific benefits: eliminating acid rain, airborne emissions, etc). The shutdown proposal includes the costs of retraining for the approximately 87,000 coal-industry workers who would lose their jobs over the proposed 10-year phaseout of coal. Since Kramer and Friend don't have $50 billion, they suggest the concept could be funded as a public service and if governments can't do it maybe some rich guys can — and the names Gates, Buffett and Bloomberg come up. Any takers?"

Building an 'Invisibility Cloak' With Electromagnetic Fields 71

Nerval's Lobster writes "University of Toronto researchers have demonstrated an invisibility cloak that hides objects within an electromagnetic field, rather than swaddling it in meta-materials as other approaches require. Instead of covering an object completely in an opaque cloak that then mimics the appearance of empty air, the technique developed by university engineering Prof. George Eleftheriades and Ph.D. candidate Michael Selvanayagam makes objects invisible using the ability of electromagnetic fields to redirect or scatter waves of energy. The approach is similar to that of 'stealth' aircraft whose skin is made of material that absorbs the energy from radar systems and deflects the rest away from the radar detectors that sent them. Rather than scattering radio waves passively due to the shape of its exterior, however, the Toronto pair's 'cloak' deflects energy using an electromagnetic field projected by antennas that surround the object being hidden. Most of the proposals in a long list of 'invisibility cloaks' announced during the past few years actually conceal objects by covering them with an opaque blanket, which becomes 'invisible' by displaying an image of what the space it occupies would look like if neither the cloak nor the object it concealed were present. An invisibility cloak concealing an adolescent wizard hiding in a corner, for example, would display an image of the walls behind it in an effort to fool observers into thinking there was no young wizard present to block their view of the empty corner. 'We've taken an electrical engineering approach, but that's what we are excited about,' Eleftheriades said in a public announcement of the paper's publication. (The full text is available as a free PDF here.)"

Comment Re:Doesn't matter in the end (Score 2, Informative) 472

Yeah, that sounds much more efficient. Nothing like letting the developer work through the (bad) optimization design, code it... get the test failure and then waste more time debugging it instead of just warning them off up front.

Belts and suspenders -- test your corner cases, but document the pitfalls.

Comment Re:If $3000 is the societal cost to you not (Score 2) 2416

Because the government is the servant of the people, not the determinator of "societal costs" or the enforcer of "how some bunch of elitists think the rest of us should live". Most especially, the Federal Government is supposed to have limits (that pesky 10th Amendment which is clear to anyone with basic reading comprehension but just gets ignored for folks who want to use the Fed to push *their* agendas, whatever those are).

If the government can tax/fine/penalize [read: FORCE by however they name it] you to do this by virtue of merely existing because of a hypothetical future cost to society, then they can similarly "save society money" by enforcing what you eat, how much you exercise, where you live, if you have children and how many... pretty much every decision you make as an adult citizen. While I know that's a dream for some (the California Air Resources Board and Mayor Bloomberg's Health Board off the top of my head), that is directly antithetical to the concept of a free citizen of a country.

We are not the children of the government, we are not the serfs of the feudal lords of Washington DC. Micromanaging our lives by wrapping it up in arbitrary taxes is still taking away our freedom of choice.

Comment What a strange article (Score 5, Interesting) 658

The opening paragraph has to be the most rabid bit of product love I can recall, especially compared with the actual content.

"upend the video games market"... Really? Just because the screen (if you have a laptop [aka can use the computer anywhere near your sofa] and the AppleTV box) can be wirelessly mirrored to the TV? And using hypothetical controllers that don't exist? Uh-huh.

"For the consumer market ... may be the most significant OS release since Windows 95". A fairly bold statement, given there's nothing in the article that even tries to back that up. Is the new security model supposed to be that big of a paradigm shift (for users, not for vendor lock-in)? Is it the "ooh... you can post to a blog quicker!" stuff? It pretty clearly looks like a point-release to an existing OS that is mildly interesting, but hardly redefining the consumer space.

Comment Re:Why do I have a hard time believing this ? (Score 2) 116

Why anti-grav? I would think a reasonably heavily armored (which a lot of it has to be anyway) Orion drive craft would suffice. Yeah, you'd get whining about the emissions in the atmosphere on the way up -- but balanced against all space programs shut down and presumably loss of the existing satellite capabilities, you could credibly believe that at least one country would get over it and just do it.


Has Apple Made Programmers Cool? 378

An anonymous reader writes "CNET suggests that Apple has totally changed the general public's perception of programmers: It's now suddenly cool to code. No matter what platform you're on. They argue that App Store millionaire success stories have 'turned a whole generation of geek coders from social misfits into superheroes.' Apparently, gone are the days when a programmer was the last person you wanted to talk to at a party: 'Mention to someone that you make apps and their interest will pick up instantly. This is an astonishing change from what a programmer in the '80s could have expected in reaction to their job description.' The App Store millionaires, or 'Appillionaires,' may have done all of us programmers a huge favor. Programming is now socially acceptable: 'Previous generations strapped on electric guitars and fought for super-stardom in sweaty dive bars, but today's youth boot up Xcode on their MacBook Pros.'"

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 373

Ok... now I'm really curious. What coasts are you referring to, and if they're the US Atlantic and Pacific coasts (not Gulf Coast to Atlantic or something silly) -- just what train did you find that only takes 2 days?

I'm seriously asking - since every one I looked at ended up going through LA then up to Chicago and back down (to Atlanta -- maybe Chicago to NY is somehow faster). If you have a link to a 2 day train which is reasonably priced (say $1k per person tops), I'd love to consider that for our next trip.

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 373

Depends on the number of people, really.

Sample annual trip just made (CA to GA): 2438 miles.

Airline cost per-person, cattle-class [not adding in taxes, fees and per-bag costs or whatnot they stick you with now] started at $450 per person round-trip.

The 2005 Impala got between 29 to 30 US mpg on the highway, call it 29 to be generous (to your claim).

Similarly, gas ranged from $3.459 to $4.759 per US gallon, but generously use $5 assuming rising prices. That's $420.35 one way, $840.70 round trip.

Since this was 2 adults and one child (not young enough to fly free -- and even if it was possible, who would take a 4+ hour flight in cattle class with a squirming/upset infant on their lap... assuming they had any confidence in said infant not taking a tumble in turbulence), that $450 starts at $1350.

Car has to tack on hotels (depends on how aggressively you push it -- 2 days is possible with 5 hour sleep breaks or so), airline has to tack on transport to/from airport [either mass transit or rental car or long term parking], etc.

The big wins for me are having the trunk of the Impala available at no additional charge, no hassle with rental cars -- and most importantly, no getting handled as if I'd created a felony. The last point frankly would keep me driving even at a 2x cost factor, but you can't claim that "you're paying more for gas by driving" as that simply isn't true outside of lousy SUVs and driving solo.

And before someone brings it up -- the trains were *more expensive* than the car, and took a week to get there by routing through Chicago. Get Amtrack to get a reasonable continental train going somewhere between airline and car prices but taking 2-3 days tops and I suspect a lot more folks would choose it.

Our OS who art in CPU, UNIX be thy name. Thy programs run, thy syscalls done, In kernel as it is in user!