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Comment: Re: Prison time (Score 2) 232

by Sun (#48230409) Attached to: CHP Officers Steal, Forward Nude Pictures From Arrestee Smartphones

As far as I know (IANAL), anyone can bring a civil suit against the police department. A specific cop has pretty much complete immunity from civil suits. The only thing that can touch a specific cop is internal affairs and the DA, as mentioned by GP.

It is true that should a specific cop start causing too much money lost through civil suits, it is likely that he/she will be fired. Again, however, it is up to the department to decide, not an independent jury.


Comment: Re: Did they make money on Surface? (Score 2) 113

If you are totalling the revenue for Surface and subtracting the direct costs for Surface, why would you then include the indirect costs that are by definition not specifically for the Surface?

No, that's not a correct statement. The indirect costs may not be specifically for a specific Surface unit, but the Surface division does have indirect costs that are specifically its own costs. This means that there are, indeed, indirect costs that are specifically Surface's.

The Surface factory pays rent, taxes, electricity and utility. These are all indirect costs, and they are all specifically for Surface.

What's more, the number of units sold is crucial. If you only sold a million units and the gross profit per unit is $5 (and it is, likely, less), then it doesn't take the indirect expenses to be particularly high for the division to be running at a net loss.


Comment: Re:Transition period? (Score 1) 259

by Sun (#48151055) Attached to: "Double Irish" Tax Loophole Used By US Companies To Be Closed

I didn't say that was okay. I said that was Ireland's rationale.

If memory serves me well, Cayman Islands have a similar shtick. No income tax for either corporations or residents, but lots of taxes on product consumption (customs etc.)

It is the trade offs that countries do to attract the "right" type of economy.


Comment: Re:Transition period? (Score 3, Insightful) 259

by Sun (#48146995) Attached to: "Double Irish" Tax Loophole Used By US Companies To Be Closed

As far as Ireland is concerned, that is exactly it.

Google, Facebook and Microsoft (to name three, I'm fairly sure there are more) hold huge development and support centers in Ireland. While corporate tax in Ireland is low, income tax is fairly high. The Ireland government isn't losing from this deal.


Comment: Re:Einstein's Nobel was for Photo-electric effect (Score 5, Informative) 986

by Sun (#48127791) Attached to: Independent Researchers Test Rossi's Alleged Cold Fusion Device For 32 Days

To the best of my knowledge, no one has won multiple Nobels in a single field.

Okay, after checking that statement, it is not true. Frederick Sanger has won two Nobel prizes in Chemistry. He won it alone, in 1958, "for his work on the structure of proteins, especially that of insulin", and again in 1980, with Walter Gilbert, "for their contributions concerning the determination of base sequences in nucleic acids" (source).

It seems to me that the Nobel committee does not like to award the same prize twice. I think, had Frederick done the nucleic research on his own, he would not have won the second one. I think the committee only awarded him the second prize because not doing so would have denied Walter Gilbert the prize (and awarding only Walter a prize for joint work would be strange).

In that respect, Einstein got only one Nobel because he did his research alone.


Comment: Re:Oracle (Score 1) 146

by Sun (#48102617) Attached to: Google Takes the Fight With Oracle To the Supreme Court

The action against Microsoft was based on anti-competitive acts, founded on the assumption (validated by the court) that Microsoft is a monopoly.

This action is based on strict copyright. Oracle is not alleging that Google are trying to harm Java, just that they didn't have the right to do what they did.


Comment: Re:Unicomp (Score 1) 304

by Sun (#48100957) Attached to: The Greatest Keyboard Ever Made

Did you buy the full size or what they call the "space saver"?

I am typing this on the space saver, and I can, indeed, flex it (if I try hard enough) by a few millimeters. For me, the reduced weight is a plus, though.

If you consider that a minus, you should go with the "Classic" version. I doubt you'll see any difference, USB and extra keys aside.


Comment: Re:Why do people still care about C++ for kernel d (Score 1) 365

by Sun (#48062927) Attached to: Object Oriented Linux Kernel With C++ Driver Support

Smart pointers in C++ are rarely larger in size than normal pointers.

std::unique_ptr has the same sizeof of void *. std::shared_ptr has the same sizeof as void *, but adds another allocation. Then again, boost::intrusive_ptr has the same sizeof as void *, does reference counting, does not require virtual functions in the destination class and carries no extra allocations (but does require that the class being indexed be aware it has references).


Comment: Re:Why do people still care about C++ for kernel d (Score 1) 365

by Sun (#48060957) Attached to: Object Oriented Linux Kernel With C++ Driver Support

Yeah, Linus mentioned those too. Where does C++ do hidden heap allocations?

The only example I can think of is when throwing an exception (and see below about that), and even then, the compiler rarely actually performs a heap allocation. Small exception classes are stored in a pre-allocated static buffer.

And if you are talking about library use, then you need to realize two things:
1. STL is the most allocation aware library I have ever seen. With a few C++11 related exceptions, it will always allow you to pick an allocator, and will always avoid allocation where one can be avoided.
2. If you think even that level of care is not enough, then you are free to not use STL. Assuming you are correct, your options are "Don't use STL, implement your own implementation in C++" or "Don't use STL, implement your own in C", and I fail to see how option 2 is preferrable to option 1.

As for the other two, RTTI cost you a few extra bytes per defined class (not instance). You are free to tell your compiler not to generate those if you don't use it (for user space, I rarely bother).

Exceptions are a different story. They get a very bad rap, and it's only partially justified. There are two reasons to not like exceptions for kernel code. The first is that exception use is a fundemental design decision. It is not something that can be slapped on to existing code. To do it properly, you must also have RAII and a good structuring of your code. Since those two are a good idea regardless, most good C++ programmers don't mind, but it's hard to migrate existing code to use it properly.

The other reason exceptions are not liked is because of a design decision made by the C++ committee that exceptions have no runtime cost when an exception is not thrown. This leads to the compiler generating the same code twice, and to a very complicated stack unwind code. I don't think either of these will prevent exceptions from working in the kernel (given the proper adaptations), but I do understand how these cause people to be weary of them.

I do agree with Linus about one thing. C++ is a language that is too complex. This leads to good C++ programmers being a minority among C++ programmers.


To err is human -- to blame it on a computer is even more so.