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Comment: Re:Beaches (Score 1) 53

by TheLoneGundam (#44390721) Attached to: NOAA Goes Live With New Forecasting Supercomputers
Yes, I believe you _can_ get a lot of the raw data via NOAA's site, it is I believe free for US citizens since we already paid for it through funding NOAA. Maybe you can use Google's new algorithm for detecting 100,000 features in an image on a single computer to make the model run on you desktop in usable time - remember, as one of the NOAA sites quotes a scientist: if your model doesn't run in faster than real time, you might as well just swivel your chair to look out the window (assuming I'm not being an insensitive clod who doesn't pay attention to the fact that you don't have a window).

Comment: Compiler numerical innacuracies (Score 1) 641

by TheLoneGundam (#44176803) Attached to: Things That Scare the Bejeezus Out of Programmers
Once saw a FORTRAN compiler change cause _slightly_ different numerical results in a bridge engineering program. They did some work to verify that bridges built using the program compiled under the previous version of the compiler were structurally sound but that was the most fearful thing I could think of, that numerical inaccuracies in what the compiler generates could cause an engineering failure that could cause loss of life.

Comment: Re:Nothing does (Score 2) 276

by TheLoneGundam (#44114867) Attached to: Join COBOL's Next Generation
COBOL, which is compiled, doesn't need another language to run. It does, in many implementations, require a run-time library to supply common functions which are called by the compiled code - for example, the DISPLAY verb may be implemented as a common subroutine. On IBM mainframes, the run-time library support for many languages is provided by the Language Environment product.

Comment: Performance reports (Score 1) 519

by TheLoneGundam (#43733689) Attached to: iTunes: Still Slowing Down Windows PCs After All These Years
Maybe it's just my mainframe background, and maybe I haven't searched hard enough, but I don't see in the laptop/desktop/server enviroment a lot of detailed presentations of performance issues, how they were diagnosed, and how they were solved. I see them very occasionally. Is there a lack of good performance recording (and I mean recording for analysis after the fact, not real-time monitoring) tools, or is it just that purchasing faster hardware components has probably become cheaper than spending time diagnosing the issues?

Comment: What people overlook about Ala Carte (Score 1) 614

Ala carte channels would be governed by the law of supply and demand; so if you and five of your friends are the only ones who want to watch "The Channel That Shows Video from Alt.Plan9.OS.Demos" the price is going to be pretty high. None of the ala carte proposals I've ever seen say that the channel provider has to make those channels cheap.

Comment: Re:Are they on some older software that can't hand (Score 1) 91

by TheLoneGundam (#43474609) Attached to: American Airlines Grounds Flights
"X-Wait" doesn't mean it's never coming back... if you notice it, it means that response time is slower than you expect but it still might come back. Many mainframe block-mode terminals and application "servers" like CICS (CICS is most analogous to Tomcat though the comparison isn't exact) "lock" the terminal until the transaction response is produced, to keep people from entering hundreds of transactions in a row and losing track of which response goes with which transaction. So, if a transaction is delayed for some reason, your terminal is still "locked". Impatient people don't like the situation, reset the terminal emulator, and enter the transaction again - but the only effect of that is to throw away the result of the first transaction when CICS goes to send it (because the terminal session was lost) and put your transaction at the back of the queue. That's not to say that things _never_ get hung up in the locked state, of course there are failures where the response never comes back, but it's good to pick some amount of time (30 seconds, 1 minute) to wait before going through the "throw it away and start over" process.

Comment: How about a 'sort of smart' watch? (Score 1) 260

I don't need or want my watch to check my e-mail, flash when I have voicemail or any of that stuff. I'd be happy with a watch just smart enough, with a very very simple API, to allow me to design and download new "skins" to the watch when I feel like it. It would have a screen no bigger than my current Timex (including the bezel), and have these basic UI elements:
  1. Background
  2. 12 or 24 hour time
  3. Digital or analog display supported
  4. Analog display Hand designs - including transparency for those people who just want a little dot rotating around or whatever.
  5. The font for the digits; perhaps a separate one for the day/date display
  6. A button to cause it to brighten, dim, or be blank when I want it to not glow in the dark
  7. Download one or two alarm sounds

Since I don't want to change the watch theme extremely frequently, I'm OK with micro USB to do that, I don't need wireless. Of all of the above, the most important point is to _not_ make the thing look like I've strapped some cellphone to my wrist!

FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL: A guinea pig is not from Guinea but a rodent from South America.

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