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Comment Re: All I know is that this: (Score 2) 246

It's about both cost and risk analysis. If you've got a lot of infrastructure, then you've probably already got a team of decent admins. Adding another server has a very small marginal cost. If you haven't, then the cost is basically the cost of hiring a sysadmin. Even the cheapest full-time sysadmin costs a lot more than you can easily spend with GitHub. Alternatively, you get one of your devs to run it. Now you have a service that is only understood well by one person, where installing security updates (let alone testing them first) is nowhere near that top priority in that person's professional life, and where at even one hour a week spent on sysadmin tasks you're still spending a lot more than an equivalent service from GitHub would cost.

In both of the latter cases, the competition for GitHub isn't a competent and motivated in-house team. It is almost certainly better to run your own infrastructure well, but the competition for GitHub is running your own infrastructure badly and they're a very attractive proposition in that comparison.

Outsourcing things that are not your core competency is not intrinsically bad, the problem is when people outsource things that are their core competency (e.g. software companies deciding to outsource all of the development - it's not a huge step from there to the people working for the outsourcing company to decide to also handle outsourcing management and start up a competitor, with all of the expertise that should be yours), or outsourcing without doing a proper cost-benefit analysis (other than 'oh, look, it's cheaper this quarter!').

If you think outsourcing storage of documents is bad remember that, legal companies, hospitals and so on have been doing this for decades without issues - storing large quantities of paper / microfiche is not their core competency and there are companies that can, due to economies of scale, do it much cheaper. Oh, and if that still scares you, remember that most companies outsource storing all of their money as well...

Comment Re:The gun is pointing at the foot (Score 1) 404

Something of a biased set. I've been using Firefox on Android for over a year, and I am very happy with it. I wasn't aware until your post that Mozilla was collecting satisfaction stats, and even now I can't really be bothered to post there - but I probably would if I were unhappy with it. Firefox with the self-destructing cookies add-on is the only mobile browser that I've found that gives me the cookie management policy that I want.

Comment Re:Firefox 44 (Score 1) 404

Perhaps they're expecting people to install add-ons? Fine-grained cookie management was why I switched to Firefox on Android, but I actually ended up using the self-destructing cookies add-on, which has exactly the policy that I want: any site can set a cookie, but unless I explicitly opt in (which I can do retroactively with the undelete button) to keeping it, then it's deleted when I navigate away from the site. Everything works as if I had cookies set to automatically accept, but doesn't get to persist any state for me across visits unless I permit it to.

Comment Re:Things that make you go "hmmm..." (Score 0) 150

A plane travelling at 500 miles per hour, at an altitude of 40,000 feet, has to lose a huge amount of both kinetic and gravitational potential energy before it's stationary on the runway. If you can capture 1% of this, then you can taxi around the airport for quite an extended period.

A number of airlines are now also powering the flight systems from the ground when connected to the terminal, so that they're not burning expensive avgas to generate electricity.

Comment Re:What's the point (Score 1) 312

MINIX is far more capable these days than HURD, is a more modern microkernel design, and is more permissively licensed. The only reasons for continuing to work on HURD are that you really like the particular filesystem namespace arrangement of servers that they use, or that you are fanatical about GPLv3.

Comment Re:"7:30 PM" (Score 1) 117

Which would be equally unhelpful for readers that are not familiar with UTC

Fortunately, for now, most readers of Slashdot are from Earth. Every time zone is expressed as an offset from UTC. Given a time in UTC, it is easy to work out what it is in your own time zone. Given a time in any other time zone, you do the conversion by first looking up the UTC offset of the reported time zone, subtracting it, and then adding your own UTC offset.

Comment Re:I guess it's easier... (Score 1) 425

It does, but the simple fact is if you're fat and trending towards obese you're eating too much for your particular configuration.

Even that's not really true. You're eating too much of some things, but for some people it's very hard to find foods that contain enough of things that they are bad at metabolising (certain amino acids or vitamins, for example), without also including far too many of certain carbohydrates or fats that they do absorb. There are outliers who, eating what for most people would be a fairly balanced diet, are both putting on weight and exhibiting symptoms of starvation. There are a lot more people who tend in this direction, but to a lesser extreme.

Comment Re:SWF spec is available (Score 2) 256

The Flash spec has been published since at least the '90s, though the click-through license agreement prohibited writing tools for playing back flash until about 10 years ago. There were numerous third-party tools for producing Flash, just as there were for PDF and PostScript, because that's always been Adobe's explicit policy for getting adoption for their formats.

Comment Re:Not that crap again (Score 5, Interesting) 256

Except that the "open" PDF standard you're talking about is only a small subset of the oldest, most primitive image/text drawing features of said file format

That's not even remotely true. Read the PDF 1.7 specification (chapter 8, specifically) and you'll see all of that stuff documented. JavaScript has been part of the spec since PDF 1.3. The fact that some viewers don't implement features that have been part of the spec for over 10 years is not the fault of the spec.

You might be thinking of the PDF/A family of standards. These are ISO standards for long-term document archiving and specify an intentionally restricted subset of PDF features to ensure that it will always be easy to implement readers for them.

Comment Re:Hey AMD, show us your new CPUs for 2016 (Score 1) 152

I'm not a semiconductor expert, but as I understand it: the thinner the traces on the semiconductor, the higher clock rate can go or the lower the power dissipation can be

That was true until about 2007. Then we hit the end of Dennard Scaling. Now you get more transistors, but your power consumption per transistor remains quite similar and so you need to be more clever. That's much easier on a CPU than a GPU because CPUs run quite a wide variety of workloads and so there are lots of things you can add that will be a bit win for a subset of workloads but not consume power at other times. On a GPU, it's harder because they tend to saturate a lot more of the execution engines that they ship with.

As for higher clock rate, that's sort-of true, but bumping the clock rate has a big impact on power consumption and so you don't get very much from it either.

Also, with the newer processes the yields are often lower and so, even though you can pack more on a wafer, once it's not going to be much cheaper (especially not once you factor in the need to recoup the $100bn that you spent on R&D to get the new fab up and running - you need to amortise that across a lot of chips to make it worthwhile).

In summary, being a generation behind is far less of a disadvantage than it was a decade ago.

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