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Comment: Amazon contest may accelerate worker displacement (Score 1) 55

by aNonnyMouseCowered (#49340607) Attached to: Amazon Robot Contest May Accelerate Warehouse Automation

Yeah, there's always two ways to title a tech story, the utopian and the dystopian implications of a coming-of-age sci-fi technology. I'm beginning to think maybe only a form of democratic communism will save us from the techno barons of the future. That or the spread of molecular manufacturing, where the only resource you need is the dirt in your backyard, unless the hoi polloi have all been by the time packed into mega-prison-like kilometer-high apartment complexes.

Comment: Disinfectant proof (Score 1) 49

Rather pointles calling an inorganic object germ-proof, unless we're talking about some genetically engineered supergerm that eats plastic for breakfast.Hell, I can guarantee that my cheap China-branded keyboard is also Ebola-proof. Just don't mail it back to me. Incidentally the fine article makes no mention of Ebola-proof, simply that the tablet is resistant to the common chemicals used to disinfect objects suspected of being contaminated with Ebola. So strictly speaking the tablet is disinfectant/antiseptic proof.

Comment: Bipedal? (Score 1) 45

Just curious, what made the researchers think the creature was in fact bipedal. The fact the forelegs are shorter thant the hind legs? There's nothing in the article that tries to justify the assertion except the CG image. The creature could be no more bipedal than a bear or a gorilla that occasionally walks on two legs.

Comment: Not a genuine advantage (Score 3, Insightful) 193

"the agent won't help them without a valid key"

Not a genuine advantage with 99% of users (pirates included) outside the US (figure pulled off my behind). When was the last time you called tech support for support and not visit some online forum or your local tech guru.

The real issue: will the software police break down your door if you get reported using a legally upgraded "pirate" version? Can you just say, but the kind folks at Redmond say I get a pass, my sins have been forgiven?

Comment: But is it legal to mod your copy? (Score 1) 322

Posting this after the story update that says the Microsoft offer is WORLDWIDE and not just made for China:

The question I find interesting is whether MS will allow modded copies to circulate, similar to the way say Google allows Cyanogenmod to come out with their own Android distro. I can't see how MS can prevent modded copies. Maybe MS will build a "time-bomb" into Win 10 that forces you to upgrade to a paying version of Win 10+. But I'm sure since it's a consumer oriented OS there are enough holes in it that would allow the OS to run virtually forever or until the last Intel-based machine comes out of the factory floor.

The way I see it, this "offer" is going to be permanent. There's no turning or shall we say cutting back on the free beer. Whether this is a good thing or not is another story altogether. Go ahead, enjoy your freeware (spyware?).

Comment: Definitive copy (Score 1) 214

by aNonnyMouseCowered (#49281993) Attached to: The GNU Manifesto Turns Thirty

Does anybody know if the online document is the definitive copy of Stallman's published letter to the editor? I'm also curious about the other GNU docs, not that I think they were "retconned" to fit current realities in the software world today. But mainly because I think these documents should be preserved for their historical worth, warts, typos and all. It would interesting to study the progression of Stallman's thought from a focus purely on getting that proprietary printer in the corner to work to a more embracing political philosopy of information freedom.

Comment: Re:well.. (Score 1) 759

"Once China/Taiwan/Malaysia finish their transition, it's game over for supply/demand until someone can stabilize Africa to the point of industrializing it and exploiting it for cheap labor."

I agree with you except for your selection of countries. Why group China Taiwan and Malaysia? Unless you're thinking of China annexing Taiwan (a real possibilty). As for Malaysia, it's too insignificant a country to matter in the global economic system, even if sometimes their leaders gets too loud-mouthed for their own good. Among Southeast Asian countries, Indonesia would carry more weight. Also you failed to mention that other people billionaire, India. So your projection would only come true after India fully industrializes.

Comment: The Firewire of the new millenium (Score 1) 392

So Thunderbolt is turing out to be the Firewire of the new millenium. The first iterations of Firewire were at least a generation or two ahead of USB. Now almost everybody who wants fast plug-and-play data transfer uses USB 3. If nobody uses your advance tech, it soon becomes obsolete since no users means nobody is going to fund its future development.

Comment: Linux is not an OS (Score 3, Informative) 166

" The OS also happens to be called Chrome but it is just a variant of Linux."

WTF is this modded insightful. Linux is just the kernel, maybe the heart of the operating system, but not the OS itself. The OS is the kernel and the whole bunch of other stuff that allows you to run the program you click, type or tap at. See: Ubuntu can be called an OS, a variant of what some free software advocates call GNU/Linux (but actually a little bit more). Android is an OS, mostly without GNU components, also based on the Linux kernel. OpenWRT is an embedded Linux-based OS for routers and other network devices. Chrome OS is another OS that runs on top of the Linux kernel.

Comment: Re:Just y'know... reconnect them spinal nerves (Score 1) 210

But that goes without saying! Who would be fool enough to opt for a transplant if the part that's going to be swapped out is perfectly healthy. I mean heart transplants are for people with unhealthy hearts. Ditto for kidneys, livers, etc. So a potential body transplant would be for people with unhealthy bodies. Note that I used the word body tranplant, since our heads or at least the gray matter inside it, is what defines us as a person.

I think by the time they figure out how to successfully transplant whole bodies, they'd have figured out either: (1) how to regrow the damaged parts of the spinal cord and nervous system, (2) manufacture the parts needed for a cyborg (ala $6M Dollar Man or Ghost in the Shell.).

Comment: 2D vs 3D decoding (Score 1) 60

I think you're confusing two things. While in PC-land the GPU may (or may not) be involved in video decoding (stuff like Intel's VAAPI or nVidia's VDPAU), in ARM SoC-land, the GPU is quite often another beast from the part of the chip that decodes the video. The GPU, of course, is involved in rendering all those 3D Android games you play. But for showing stuff like so-called H265 video, an Android settop box would rely on a custom hardware video decoder separate from the GPU. This is quite similar to the way some PC chips have built in AES support.

This makes sense even if I'm to lazy to include links to back up my post. Everybody knows how GPU's are used for 3D games and those horrid wobbly desktop effects, while videos, whether they're plain MPEG or H26x, are strictly 2D. Intel's power-hungry CPUs can effectively brute-force the higher end video codecs like H265, while the lower-power Android SoCs require a hardware-based solution.

Saliva causes cancer, but only if swallowed in small amounts over a long period of time. -- George Carlin