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Comment: and the generica shall prevail (Score 1) 428

by epine (#48471347) Attached to: How Intel and Micron May Finally Kill the Hard Disk Drive

the performance war

Because, as we all know, performance comes in only one flavour.

This is an even sneakier version of what Daniel Dennett calls "rathering". This is where you write "The proponents of A would say that A resolves this issue. As we can see, A does not solve the problem, so rather B." The trick here is that no-one ever said the issue was a dichotomy between A and B. It's been implied by a rhetorical device that few readers even notice. Apparently Stephen J. Gould used this technique a fair amount. This surprised me. He was a pretty solid author for the most part.

Do you really think that SSD is the best storage option for Google Earth's highest resolution imagery of the Nunavut territory? I guess your philosophy is that if the data isn't in high enough demand to justify SSD performance levels, there's no point keeping the data online in the first place.

Then there's a few hundred people who charter expensive hunting trips in the Canadian north and afterwards they go to Google Earth to review where they've been and Google Earth says "Imagery 404: not enough demand to make it cost effective to host the data on SSD".

If it's just a few hundred people, so who gives a shit?

Comment: Re:Flip Argument (Score 1) 1087

by NoImNotNineVolt (#48467205) Attached to: Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

I would have shot him as well

I know, right? God forbid we have to flee and look like wimps. Much better to take a man's life.

According to Wilson's account, he was not in his car when the fatal shot was fired. In fact, when the fatal shot was fired, Brown had already been wounded numerous times. It seems unlikely to me that Brown was still posing a threat to Wilson's life at this point (as Wilson had numerous avenues for escape and Brown already had a few holes in him), but for some reason nobody is questioning why Officer Wilson felt he had no other option than to kill Brown.

I suppose machismo is a valid defense in our society. Wonderful.

Comment: Re:Moderate BS (Score 1) 1087

by NoImNotNineVolt (#48467135) Attached to: Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

Multiple witnesses (including half a dozen African Americans who came forward on their own to the police, and weren't interested in media attention) corroborated all of this, including what happened next (Brown turns around and moves at Wilson, who fires a few times, winging Brown - Wilson STOPS shooting and again tells Brown to stop - Brown then charges at Wilson who shoots again until Brown stops). There's blood on the street that shows Brown covered significant distance TOWARDS Wilson, just as described by those same witnesses.

Based on my understanding of the prosecutor's statement to the news media, the fatal shots were fired quite a distance from the patrol car. Wilson had allegedly pursued Brown for some distance before Brown allegedly turned to charge at Wilson. My question is, was shooting Brown to death Wilson's only option? Was he for some reason unable to flee the allegedly aggressive Brown? What about after he had already succeeded in shooting him, and Brown still allegedly made some sudden movements toward Wilson, was Wilson's only option to continue shooting at Brown? Was this shot-and-bleeding-on-the-ground Brown still posing an immediate threat to the life of Wilson or someone else? If not, why was it legal for him to continue shooting? Is there some authority vested in law enforcement officers that allows them to shoot to death anyone that seeks to do harm, regardless of their actual means to accomplish this goal? If a five-year-old chases after a cop trying to kick him in the shin, does the cop have the authority to shoot him? If not, then why is this any different if it's a gunshot victim crawling across the pavement instead of a five-year-old running? Doesn't each pose an equally insignificant threat?

Comment: Re:What about long-term data integrity? (Score 1) 428

by c6gunner (#48465033) Attached to: How Intel and Micron May Finally Kill the Hard Disk Drive

A RAID can be lost or corrupted, or someone can overwrite or delete a file.

And tapes can be lost or corrupted, or someone can burn the building down.

This is an old argument, and every time it gets revisited RAID starts to look better. Overwriting / deletion might have been a concern prior to modern filesystems which incorporate easy and cheap snapshotting, but nowdays that part of the argument just doesn't fly. Corruption is still a concern but, again, that's a risk you take with any backup solution too.

There's no such thing as a guaranteed backup. If you're very rich and very paranoid, you could certainly rig up a "backup solution" that involves copying your data every 5 minutes to 50 different offsite locations in 50 different countries, plus having some cheap third-world-labour transcribe all the zeros and ones to a paper copy for storage in an underground vault. And even that's not 100% because a really big asteroid will result in unrecoverable corruption. In the end it all comes down to how much you're willing to spend and what level of risk you're willing to accept. For most of us who aren't running IT departments that equation comes down to something like "ZFS RAIDZ2".

Comment: Re:Shock-resistance? (Score 1) 428

by c6gunner (#48464989) Attached to: How Intel and Micron May Finally Kill the Hard Disk Drive

Having said that, my ideal laptop would have oodles of storage but the drive would hardly ever need to "spin up" because almost everything I need would fit in the SSD. In "real terms" this would be at least a 128GB SSD plus at least 2TB of less expensive storage.

Try this on for size then. My current laptop has 3 x 1tb drives internal, but they only spin up when I need them to. My many OSs (several flavors of linux, 2 versions of windows, plus BSD) all run off of a single 480gb mSATA Crucial M500 SSD, attached to a cheap M-SATA-to-USB-3 adapter.

All the features you're looking for, plus the portability of being able to use your personal setup on any other computer just by plugging in to a USB port.

Comment: Re: It's all about the haters (Score 1) 178

by c6gunner (#48437631) Attached to: Android 5.0 'Lollipop' vs. iOS 8: More Similar Than Ever

You know what a logo is? Same as a brand - it's a promise of quality. For good or bad. If a product can demand a 50% mark up because of a given logo, it's because the logo has built up a significant level of trust in the high quality of the product, either directly or by word of mouth.

Not exactly. While there is some truth to that analysis, it completely ignores the much larger effects of marketing and fashion. A Rolex doesn't cost 3 orders of magnitude more than a Chinese knockoff because it delivers 3 orders of magniute as much "quality"; the price is a reflection of fashion rather than functionality. Similarly, a basic Starbucks coffee costs 2-3 times as much as a coffee at the local diner, but certainly doesn't deliver 2-3 times the "quality". And don't get me started on the absurd amounts of money people are willing to pay to scam artists and frauds (eg. Sylvia Brown, "psychic", ~$700 per hour) who deliver absolutely nothing other than vague promises.

tl;dr: people will buy expensive shit for reasons that have nothing to do with quality.

Comment: market-based approach (Score 1) 157

by epine (#48436533) Attached to: Greenwald Advises Market-Based Solution To Mass Surveillance

As it happens, I was just wondering to myself this morning how much of our present right-wing enthusiasm for our current economic system is rooted in capitalist democracy being far, far, far superior to pre-COBOL Stalinism. The true test arrives when some Asian economic model arises, one very different from our own historical model, and kicks us in the pants.

It's sad, really, that "market-based" turned into such a horrible cliche. Most of the damage was caused by so many people putting it in front of "solution" (market-based solution) when what they really meant was market-based approach.

Many don't even realize that these two phrases are different, because they've defined "market-based approach" as being the solution, as it was and ever shall be, dating all the way back to pre-COBOL Stalinism.

It is, in fact, possible to design markets—markets are a human construction—that create more problems than they solve.

Ideology is when you play epsilon-delta with an infinite sleeve of mulligans. If this market fails, that just means we need to change something and try again. Even market failures are characterized as stepping stones to progress.

Personally, I'm not willing to drink mulligan Kool-Aid. I love markets that work. I hate markets that don't. It sure would be nice at the outset if it was more obvious which was which, without greater society picking up the tab for all the hooks and shanks.

Comment: Re:Killing us with rent (Score 1) 495

by Cederic (#48432297) Attached to: As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

* it's full of hipsters (any subsequent person who denies/contests this is in all likleihood a hipster themself)

What's a hipster, and why is it a bad thing?

Bear in mind that my personal observation is that pretty much any definition of 'hipster' would automatically include anybody that uses the term in a derogatory way.

Comment: Re:entertainment value (Score 1) 495

by Cederic (#48432281) Attached to: As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

There's a description of an interview a woman had at Amazon, where she was upset because she only was interviewed by males who didn't make eye-contact with her.

It took me several years and a lot of conscious thought to keep eye contact with people while talking to them. Even now that's the case.

It's got fuck all to do with gender; clearly she was discriminating against the socially inept by calling out their problem.

Comment: Re:Slashdot: polical-correct leftists anti-freedom (Score 1) 495

by Cederic (#48432251) Attached to: As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

Fuck you and your associating of inarticulate incoherence with Aspergers Syndrome.

Here's a thought for you: People with Aspergers are highly articulate online as they don't need to deal with the complex and difficult non-verbal conversational cues that cause them issues in face to face conversations.

Comment: Re:Bullshit Stats. (Score 1) 495

by Cederic (#48432229) Attached to: As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines

I'm a man, but my profession has more women in it than men. Someone wanting to do good things for society is not a justification for paying them less.

Do you earn more than your female colleagues?

Irrespective of whether you feel teachers are paid enough or not, "teachers get low pay" is a recognised phenomenon and anybody entering the profession should know in advance that they wont be getting rich from it.

In other words, low pay for teachers is not a gender issue, irrespective of whether it's a profession dominated by one gender, as people deciding to become teachers are consciously choosing to enter a low paid job.

They could choose instead to embark on a career that has above average salaries. It's not mens' fault that female teachers don't make that choice.

A committee is a life form with six or more legs and no brain. -- Lazarus Long, "Time Enough For Love"