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Comment While it might make conspiracy nuts sad (Score 3, Interesting) 48

That is actually how it works. The FBI it not, by and large, dumb about investigations. They are arguably one of the best in the business. Part of that is they know that you can't always get the evidence you want. So they'll subpoena records, but so long as you make a good faith effort to comply, they tend to be happy.

At work (a university) we get FBI subpoenas once and awhile. Quite often it is for shit that we don't have, like someone's e-mail from a long time ago. We look, see if we have a backup, and if not let them know. They are then on their way.

When people get in trouble is when they try to jam them up or break their own rules. Like if you have a company rule that says you keep all documents of X type for Y years, and they are asking for something that is Y-3 years old, they may well get miffed and go after you if you don't have it. However if you do not retain document type X, and there is no law requiring it, simply letting them know that will make them happy.

This isn't to say nobody ever gets a bad/vindictive/whatever agent that tries to create problems, but if you were to do a study, I bet you'd find that most of the interactions are very professional and they are perfectly understanding if you don't have the information they want. In the cases where a hissing match started it was because someone had the information and refused (or made it sound like that) or otherwise jammed them up.

Comment Re:The Firefox OS project needs to be terminated. (Score 1) 102

Thank you for perfectly illustrating my point as you can't name a single thing a consumer would care about and keep having to harp on and on (even slumming in FUDLand for a bit) about "free and open", thus proving my point better than I ever could that FXOS is a dead man walking, thanks.

As others have said if you believe what you are saying? Put up or shut up, name some features that a consumer would care about that have absolutely NOTHING to do with, or depend on, the words "free" or "open". If you can't or don't respond? You have perfectly proven my point yet again, thx in advance.

Comment Re:Microsoft (Score 1) 178

What good would opening up Symbian have done? It would have been like opening Windows 3.11 in 2005, it was a dead end arch that could never be made to compete.

What killed Nokia is the same thing that killed Palm and so many others, what I call "sat on ass" syndrome, in that when they were on top they sat on ass instead of looking forward and by the time they realized they needed to think ahead? They did like 90s Apple pre Jobs and just threw shit at the wall hoping something would work. They ended up with something like 3 different OSes at one point, Symbian, Meego (which needed a good 2 years to be able to compete with what Apple and Google had out then, if the devs are to be believed) and the Java one, all fighting and headhunting and backstabbing...yeah they were fucked long before Elop showed up.

Comment Nah (Score 1) 346

They just co-exist. He's wrong about efficiency of AC/DC conversion. Even inefficient devices are usually 80% or better these days and the good stuff s 95% or more. So it gets converted back and forth as needed.

There are HVDC distribution lines in the US power grid (and of course other grids). They just get converted back to AC. Often they are converted from AC as well, since most generators are AC. There is some loss, but not a ton, and everything has loss, that's just life.

Likewise there are data centers that are DC powered. No magic, they just have big AC/DC power supplies (generally the bigger you go the more efficient they are) and then run DC power to the servers, often with DC-DC voltage conversion at various points.

So no current wars, we'll just have both, and they can be interconnected as needed. The tech isn't a big deal these days, and isn't all that expensive.

Comment No shit (Score 1) 346

Switched mode PSUs, which is what basically every electronic device uses, have gotten real efficient. No surprise, there has been a big efficiency push as of late. Just how efficient does vary, of course, but it can be as high as the mid 90s (like 95%) for the real good ones, and is pretty much about 80% in all cases. It just isn't that expensive to design a reasonably efficient PSU these days.

If you look at a wall wart or line lump type adapter, they generally have a roman numeral in a circle, which is an efficiency metric. These days the US and Canada are requiring IV, the EU requires V. The exact efficiency level that needs varies with wattage, but above 50 watts it is 85% or higher.

So sure, you could save some energy going all DC in you converted the AC with a large, high voltage, SMPS as they are more efficient, but not near as much as he indicated.

Comment Re:The Firefox OS project needs to be terminated. (Score 1) 102

If the ONLY thing your product has to offer over the competition is your personal definition of "open" then YOU WILL LOSE, because nobody cares about your definition of "open" when your product is inferior in every.single.way. when compared to the other choices.

Apple has the walled garden which offers a unified user experience, Android has the app support and wide choice of devices your apps will run on, even MSFT has an advantage in the "bang for the buck" of their quite affordable offerings and the ability to integrate it into your Windows 10 desktop...what does FXOS have? It has Mozilla's definition of "open" which last I checked doesn't even jive with the GPL version of the same word...yep, not got a chance.

We have seen this time and time again, from "open" phones to "open" game consoles to "open" tablets and in every case? The results are the same, either death or usage numbers so low as to be below the margin for error. FXOS will peter out, the slow death of fading relevance and lack of support because of the simple fact that it has nothing to offer the consumer other than the Moz definition of "open".

Comment Re: Why not just forgo paid content? (Score 1) 102

If you don't want a crippled DRM stick? Then accept you are gonna need an HTPC. You can get one of the Chinese ARM boxes but I find they are rather limited on the amount of software you can run on 'em, a better choice IMHO would be to get one of the AMD Socket AM1 chips which is what I've been using at the shop. Crazy low power (average around 8w-12w according to kill-a-watt), GPU powerful enough to do 1080P with no sweat or lagging, and if you don't want to spend $$$ on an OS you can slap on OpenELEC and have a 10 foot UI OOTB.

But if all you want is the cheap stick? You are gonna have to accept they are nothing but DRM delivery medium, your only real choices are the cheapo Chinese ARM nettops (which again severely limited on apps, no OS updates make them vulnerable to hack, limited playback and media options) or go with a full blown HTPC. Considering that HDMI makes everything plug and play, the AM1 makes an APU powerful enough and ULV while being cheap easy to come by, and the sheer amount of options an HTPC gives you from serving media to your entire house by slapping a multi TB drive and having your entire media library always accessible to streaming and casual gaming makes the HTPC a no brainer IMHO. I know a lot of my HTPC customers start with the sticks then quickly get tired of the limitations and want to "trade up" to something with more options.

Try one, I bet you'll find it does all you want it to do.

Comment No, it can be practical logic (Score 1) 210

You have to be careful about letting perfect be the enemy of better. Sometimes you don't have a perfect solution to a problem, or even a good one. But you may have one that is better than what you have now. It then makes sense to go with that.

Now please note I'm not saying this is one of those cases, just that it is not political logic, but practical. If your current situation is awful and you can improve it to just bad, well that is worth doing.

Comment Re:years late (Score 1) 70

There's two parts to the Google Apple feature war tick tock attack and defend. (lets ignore the courts for now, just focus on the actual features)

The tick is a new feature. The tock is seeing what's useful and copy it. This tock will be useful in me ignoring voicemails for the most part. Even a bad transcription can be useful if you pretty much already know what the calls going to be for.

Comment Simple, but something I'd want. (Score 1) 70

I used to have Google voice. It made sense for a bit when I could have a second phone number mapped to my work phone. My work phone was a Blackberry, and as Google stopped working on the BlackBerry apps, it became less useful. Also we ended up having a SSL MITM appliance, and Google (wisely) does Cert Pinning, which broke the BlackBerry apps. I eventually dropped it and got a personal iPhone, but there were some things i missed.

Apple plugged some of the holes. Messages and Continuity allow me to type on my Mac with a real keyboard. But I missed the VoiceMail transcriptions. VoiceMail does kind of suck, and sometimes it was handy to be able to glance at a text and see what it's about. Google Voice didn't do that great of a job of transcription, but usually you'd have an idea of what someone was calling you about, and having a 60% transcription success rate was actually useful.

So, this is the last major gap with Google Voice for me. If this comes through in iOS 9.x some time, i'll be one of the first to turn it on.

Comment And it's a stupid statement (Score 1) 67

While the interconnects are certainly a very important part of a supercomptuer, they aren't the hardest part. Building a high performance CPU takes a shit ton of research and infrastructure. The barrier for entry is exceedingly high and takes a long time to spin up. You can see that with China's Longsoon processor which for all the hyped ended up being a license of a MIPS core, built on an old process technology. Building a ton end CPU is just tough stuff.

Of course then there's the other fact that there are plenty of interconnect makers that are not Chinese. The big names in high speed interconnects are Cray (US), IBM (US), and Infiniband (which is made by many companies like Intel and Mellanox). It's not like China has the high speed interconnect market cornered.

Finally there's the silliness of focusing on #1. Yes, they have the #1 computer at the linpack benchmark (which is not good at representing performance in all things). However the US has the #2, 3, 5, 8, and 10. In other words, half of the top 10. The idea that only the top spot matters is very, very silly.

Comment Re:wft ever dude! (Score 1) 211

So "as long as you do nothing wrong you have nothing to worry about" that REALLY your position? You DO know you are a felon, right? You are, I am, pretty much everybody is as You commit three felonies a day and the ONLY reason they do not go after you is how much work it would take. Now you have all these SJWs pushing for pretty much anything they find personally offensive (oh I forgot "trigger warning") to be labeled as "hate speech", you have people being investigated by Homeland for making a bad joke or daring to be seen with a sign at a protest, you have CEOs of media cartels saying every song you listen to without giving them money is really think we should make things EASIER for the state and the cartels?

If you are gonna keep that position I hope you are VERY careful with what you say, what you write, and watch, because all it will take is someone with a tiny bit of power deciding they do not like you. I personally don't have nearly as much faith in the government and cartels as you do, so I'll pass for as long as I can and buy a VPN to idoncareistan when I no longer can, thanks anyway.

Comment Re:They're going to be charging money for the OS s (Score 1) 295

That is because being "Windows ME Ready" meant that you had all WDM drivers. You see what I found the fatal flaw with WinME was some numbnuts at MSFT decided that BOTH WDM and VXD drivers should be supported...what a fuck up! If you mixed WDM and VXD drivers? It was pretty much guaranteed to shit itself and BSOD then only question was WHEN it would happen. I saw PCs at the shop (those Mini HPs with the CD holder on the top, can't recall the model ATM) that you could literally set your watch by, it would crash ME in less than 20 minutes from first boot every time. Replace the VXD only built in sound with a WDM card? Magically ran just fine.

So count yourself lucky, all WDM was a rarity when it came to ME thanks to all the Win98 parts the OEMs had, most were a mix of the two which is why IMHO Windows ME became so hated.

If God had not given us sticky tape, it would have been necessary to invent it.