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Comment: Personal computers (Score 2) 22

by TWX (#47578471) Attached to: New Display Technology Corrects For Vision Defects
This would be really nice in the personal computer realm, be it laptop or desktop, assuming that it fits in those form-factors.

I barely need glasses to drive, for distance. I can read books held in my hands without glasses. Laptops and desktops are every so slightly too far away to usually be able to do that. I would love to be able to ditch the glasses when at my desk at work.

Comment: Re:The old timers were right (Score 1) 120

by TWX (#47578447) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port

At least one major media distribution company's billing system runs on OpenVMS still

That would probably be one of the easiest things migrate off of VMS though, as there are already products for other platforms that can do that task. I'd expect special things like weather mapping, earthquake analysis, climate prediction, and other geophysical things to be harder.

Comment: Re:If there have been signs..... (Score 1) 120

by TWX (#47578423) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port
I want to know how many legacy VMS users there really are left out there. It's been SO long that companies have been forced to start researching migrating off of VMS, and I expect that a lot have made the jump.

I'm wondering if this is more an attempt to bolster staggering Itanium sales than it is to really make VMS strong again.

Comment: Re:All the happy (Score 1) 120

by TWX (#47578419) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port
I remember when there was discussion about getting rid of their printers division. Someone should have been smacked upside the head for that one, as HPs are really the only printers worth having. We've got ancient Laserjet 4s running still, and just about everything in their commercial/workgroup size since then has been good. They've had some stinkers in the color printing department (the 4500/4550 that spun the cartridges and tended to fling toner through the entire inside comes to mind, as does the 4600/4650 with the fuzz problem) but they've been a hell of a lot better than Lexmark or Dell.

Comment: Re:All the happy (Score 2) 120

by TWX (#47578405) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port
Because you're trying to establish a niche. Everyone's running on x86 or amd64, you need to set yourself apart. Since the Itanium-based boxes, if Wikipedia is to be trusted, tend to sell in the tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars range, then perhaps this is an attempt to bring the OS back into the supercomputing market where it might actually find interest. From HP's perspective, since they're the main seller of Itanium-based systems, it's also a way for them to use something that they have significant money invested in and may not be selling as well as it should.

Thing is, it's going to come down to applications. At my work they're convinced that the i-Series/AS/400 is the devil's work, and they're wanting to replace it with Microsoft-based servers, and that's even with good recordkeeping and financial software that's reasonably up-to-date. If VMS is really as dead as it sounds, then there's going to be a dearth of applications for it, and with competition from other large "big iron" machines, large POSIX systems, and even from Microsoft virtual-cluster systems, it's going to be hard to justify getting in on VMS again. If there are any existing VMS users with applications that they haven't been able to replace then those would be the first customers, but there are only so many Rand Corporations and National Weather Services out there.

Comment: Re:Change management fail (Score 1) 123

by TWX (#47578211) Attached to: Passport Database Outage Leaves Thousands Stranded
More like same as trying a test server, then after that appears to work, pushing out to only a portion of your production cluster, if the backend can handle having two different versions running concurrently, then seeing if those portion that are changed continue to work at least as well as the original ones for a functional duration, if not better. Then push out to the rest.

Even better, if the circumstances require significant DB changes, you back up the DB (you are backing up the DB, right?), start bringing up new nodes, add those nodes to the load balancer, then start bringing down old nodes. You also date-stamp the changelog so that if you have to rollback to a previous database for previous-generation servers, you can propagate the necessary changes that were committed to the new database post-roll to the old one, if you have to bring the old one back online.

Comment: Re:so, I'm in the more than 8 yrs ago camp (Score 1) 222

by TWX (#47575621) Attached to: How long ago did you last assemble a computer?
I've found that the Windows license codes on the Dells work even when the Dell is running Linux natively and the Windows OS running under a VM is not the "OEM" version, but a vanilla version of the same type. At least it's working for the Windows 7 Professional 64-bit VM that I'm running under Virtualbox on my Debian installation on my work Alienware laptop.

If you're a Linux user that occasionally needs Windows for a few proprietary tasks then it's not a bad deal having the OEM license.

Comment: Re:Doesn't surprise me (Score 0) 74

by TWX (#47575459) Attached to: Nevada Construction Project Could Be Tesla/Panasonic Gigafactory
And when it was rumored that Chrysler was introducing another brand in the early 2010s, we "knew" that Plymouth was coming back. It didn't. RAM was split from Dodge instead.

I wait until either the formal announcement or the signs go up. Until it's official it ain't official.

I watched some of that movie that Scorcese made about Howard Hughes last night. I couldn't help but draw parallels to Elon Musk, both in the secretiveness and the balls-to-the-wall approach when committing to a decision. We'll have to see how this plays out.

Comment: Re:From Finland (Score 1) 54

by TWX (#47575411) Attached to: Nokia Buys a Chunk of Panasonic
"Ping" never got me, but I knew the word first from the film adaptation of The Hunt for Red October and its scottish pronounciation (even though he was playing a Soviet Lithuanian), and after that I new it from the ICMP utility. For me, if it had a language association it was scottish/English and technical, not Asian or Chinese in particular.

Comment: Re:From Finland (Score 1) 54

by TWX (#47575375) Attached to: Nokia Buys a Chunk of Panasonic
How about I rephrase... Europe wasn't known for their consumer electronics in the United States. Of that list, the only one that I was aware of in the eighties through mid-nineties was Philips, and I knew them mostly through their ownership of American firm Magnavox. I'm now acquainted with Siemens, Ericcson, and Loewe, and I've heard of a couple of the others, but they weren't the names of that time like Samsung (for low end), Sony (for medium-grade) and Pioneer (for higher-end) were.

Comment: Re:Good riddance (Score 1) 113

by TWX (#47574015) Attached to: Crytek USA Collapses, Sells Game IP To Other Developers
Yup. In my opinion this is a bit of an, "Emperor has no clothes," moment, as the game engine itself has always seemed to need more computing power than one has, and the developers were the only ones to actually make anything of it.

There was a joke a few years ago, "Could God create a video game so demanding that his computer can't play it?" "Yes, it's called 'Crysis'."

It seems that more and more mathematicians are using a new, high level language named "research student".

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