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Comment: futureproof... (Score 1) 100

by distantbody (#34357330) Attached to: Australian Telstra Monopoly Dead
The NBN Co. spent $10b(?) dollars of Australias money to buy Telstra's current perfectly functional underground and cable/telephone network. They will own both the national fibre and copper networks, and in a few years they will rip up the copper network.

It's a needless loss of a proven piece of infrastructure, instead the fibre should go out to places that aren't adequately serviced by copper; the fibre should coexist with the copper network. Once all of the rural/under-connected areas are connected, only then should duplication of the copper network begin

I'm concerned that Australia is being mugged by Labor. I can't decide if Labor is doing it out of incompetence, malice, or for the gain of some private group.

Whatever I thought of Malcolm Turnbull before (the opposition communications minister), he has proven himself to be the only politician competent on the issue, and I hope he succeeds in stopping Labor.

They're stringing the fibre on telegraph poles (bushfires, storms) ... The first mass outage is going to cause a lot of pain.

Comment: competing with the roaches (Score 2, Interesting) 293

by distantbody (#33660366) Attached to: Australian Schools Go iPad-Crazy
Whenever stories like this crop up (notebooks in, paper out; turn everything into a game), the future of the next generation looks to be dumber, fatter, lazier, more demanding, less-attentive, and more commodity-like; loath-able yet not by their own fault. Basically: less fit to survive.

Comment: add some electrons to those photons. (Score 1) 122

by distantbody (#33052852) Attached to: Intel's 50Gbps Light Peak Successor
For this optical interconnect to be as universal as USB, it must provide power + data. Given the size of an optical fibre, Light Peak is the best opportunity to unify data interconnects, from portable device to displays, networking and even internal PC interconnects
I just hope they don't screw it up like usb with a dozen different connectors.
On that note, there will be a new micro connector for USB3, which means another charger and more cables. I'm unsure that Intel will do Light Peak right by the consumer.

Comment: I hope it's better than BBB (Score 0, Flamebait) 182

by distantbody (#32226564) Attached to: Trailer For Blender Open Movie <em>Sintel</em> Ready
Was I the only one who found Big Buck Bunny a bit perverse? From the title , which sounds like a porno, to the unappealing and grotesque characters, and even the plot.

An obese, stern-looking rabbit with paradoxically dainty mannerisms. I would use the descriptors: unhealthy, sexually confused, weak, unpleasant, sure that can work as a character that the audience could learn to empathize with, but the plot is nowhere near that.

Comment: Re:Call me conservative (Score 1) 229

by distantbody (#31656370) Attached to: Canadian Libraries Want $300,000 To Buy Games
+1

Call me conservative also, but I think libraries should be places of knowledge. I think the intentions of the Toronto libraries are good, but 'getting kids through the door with video games' is IMO naive -- as in it doesn't work like that (from my experience).

When pop CDs/DVDs were introduced at my local library, it slowly turned into a 'hang-out' space where chatter was ok because the librarians didn't want to confront or play the 'stickler librarian' role. Did it achieve the goal of getting non-readers into the library? Yes. Did they read anything? Nope. Did it make the library less conducive place for reading and studying? Yes.

One thing that this idea reminds me of is 'kids sections' in libraries. The rationale is 'get 'em while there young', with colorful kids motifs and toys, the adults can put up with some squealing and crying in the library... The reality is that noisy uncontrolled kids shouldn't be anywhere near a library, they can get their Barney fix elsewhere.

I hold the belief that books are the best communicators of information, as it requires active concentration and everything has to at least get parsed. I think a library should be about knowledge (incl. internet), and particular the best knowledge source the book, and since it is a place for reading, it goes hand in hand with reading for enjoyment, and therefore all books.

Don't degrade the libraries, instead closely monitor children's reading in school so that any reading problems are caught early so that they can have the enjoyment and appreciation of books. But I guess that is more resource intensive, longer-term commitment to individuals and probably requires parental involvement.

Comment: do they have any potential? (Score 1) 171

by distantbody (#31388126) Attached to: A Balanced Look At Cellphone Radiation
Does a micro-wave have ANY potential to break an atomic bond? If the answer is 'yes' then I think the simple conclusion would be that wireless radiation could cause cancer. Of course the next issue would be probability.

On a different angle, microwaves produce heat in the absorbing material, and the warmer matter becomes the more likely atomic bonds are to break, so another simple (I'll stress simple) conclusion could be that microwaves increase the likelihood of cancer.

Those two conclusions, however simple, would concern an average person. The next step of quantifying the risk takes a lot of research, with a lot of variables and equations and, and would be venerable to fudging from any vested interest (perhaps all of the contradicting papers over the years are evidence of that). I guess the most reputable answer only time will tell.

Comment: Similar stuff from IBM (Score 2, Interesting) 53

by distantbody (#31369496) Attached to: New Material Sets Stage For All-Optical Computing
EETimes has "IBM Research claimed a keystone achievement in on-chip optical communications Wednesday (March 3), saying its 40-gigabit-per-second (Gbps) germanium avalanche photodetector completes what it calls the nanophotonic toolkit." (link) (A few days before announcing 2,500 layoffs, hmmm...)

...And the same news from Semiconductor Intl.

Comment: same ol' bt audio (Score 3, Informative) 103

by distantbody (#31357240) Attached to: Bluetooth 4.0 To Reach Devices In Fourth Quarter
They need to improve the music streaming. Currently its decompress the audio > real time lossy recompression with worse codec > transmit and then finally decompress. It's less than ideal for audio quality and battery life. I think data transmission over te skin would be good for the task. My ears get warm and tender after 10 minutes from using a bt headset anyway, maybe I'm just allergic to it...

Comment: Re:Maybe they'll grow up as well as old (Score 1) 721

by distantbody (#31355812) Attached to: Using Classical Music As a Form of Social Control

It is not the sort of thing that you require intense training to appreciate because it is all intellectual or something, and the actual sound is awful, it is simply nice to listen to.

It does require some training or moderate understanding of classical instrumentation and arrangement to fully appreciate it. 'Intense' training isn't necessary by any means, but it does require some effort from the listener. Secondly, it has been shown that classical music demands the engagement of higher order functioning areas of the brain, which naturally a lot of youth don't have. It has also been shown to be the best music to study by.

So it's not just about being 'cool', more like the small number of youth who appreciate it are 'uncool' to begin with. It's not snobbery either; older people are more inclined to be able to appreciate of it because of their mature brain structures, but it's not like everyone will find enjoyment in it after a certain age, I guess upbringing and even genetics would be factors also as to who might find captivation in classical music (I should add good classical music, as it certainly has its share of mediocre compositions).

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