Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.


Forgot your password?

Comment: True For Me (Score 1) 126

by friedmud (#48784777) Attached to: Radio, Not YouTube, Is Still King of Music Discovery

I subscribe to Beats for my unlimited, play anything service.

I use iTunes for buying Albums I want to keep forever (that I usually listen to on Beats first).

BUT... I still subscribe to Sirius/XM in the car (and online)... and that's where I normally learn about new bands (on the Indie/Alt stations). I use Shazam to snag a song that comes on the radio... and it directly has a button that lets me listen to it (and the album) on Beats later after I get home... from there I typically spin off to other things Beats/iTunes suggests.

I tried dropping the "radio" portion of this system a while ago... and found myself stuck in a musical rut. Beats does a decent job of leading me into hand-picked playlists that are "radio like" - but when faced with the choice of picking something I know is good vs something I don't know about I still often find myself listening to stuff I've already heard before. The "forced" nature of the radio naturally leads to listening to things outside of my current library...

Comment: Re:Sounds Better? (Score 1) 433

by friedmud (#48594129) Attached to: Vinyl Record Pressing Plants Struggle To Keep Up With Demand

This isn't true for me. I really don't give a rat's ass about "toxins" (that's WAY overblown) - but I generally buy organic. Why? Quality. I'm not directly talking about "taste" (although grass-fed beef _does_ taste different from corn fed... but both are good!). I'm talking about average _quality_ of the food: i.e. how fresh it is, how well it is packaged, how it has been processed (or not), etc.

Yes, if you have two cows that are both high quality and you raise one organically and one non-organically and process their meat in exactly the same way and get it to the market and then to my table in exactly the same way: they are going to taste similar. _However_ that's not what happens.

Organic farmers are usually closer to where their goods are sold. They also give a shit about their product and aren't just some huge conglomerate - and their food is processed in smaller batches where more care can be taken. This means that (on average) I get higher quality food when I buy organic. Fresher greens, fresher (and better cut) meat, better spices, fresher produce, etc.

This is the same reason why people like to shop at farmer's markets: better quality food straight from farms.

As for the actual topic here: I know a lot of people are doing the Vinyl thing because it's "in" right now... but many people are also discovering that they _like_ the color added by vinyl medium.. and that it suits their ears. I'm not one of those people (digital FTW!) - but I can understand it.

Comment: Re:blah blah blah (Score 1) 105

by friedmud (#48560997) Attached to: Seeking Coders, Tech Titans Turn To K-12 Schools

No. Design is just as important as getting the right answer. More projects fail from bad design then from not working properly (entropy overtakes them until they can't add new features users want or the bugs start to creep in as new features are added due to poor compartmentalization).

Math helps. It helps a ton. Being able to use givens and rearrange a known set of variables to get to an answer is definitely critical. BUT - there is more to creating good software.

Starting early on how to think abstractly and to generalize with good interfaces is key so starting with high schoolers is not a bad idea at all.

Comment: Sounds wasteful and stupid ... (Score 1) 61

by friedmud (#48241841) Attached to: Haier Plans To Embed Area Wireless Chargers In Home Appliances

Maybe not in the home... but think about public spaces. Put a few of these in a hotel lobby and everyone traveling through there can get a charge.

What about at Airports? Put one in the middle of each waiting area and all the passengers get a charge.

How about meeting rooms at companies?

Not too mention restaurants (Starbucks?)...

There are tons of places where lots of people congregate and they would appreciate getting a "top up" on the their batteries.

This is not a question of "if" only of "when"... and these are the first steps toward that...

Comment: Re:Yes you are (Score 1) 634

by friedmud (#46964261) Attached to: Why Scientists Are Still Using FORTRAN in 2014

You can install PETSc without a Fortran compiler at all. Change that --download-f-blas-lapack to --download-c-blas-lapack and you're good to go...

In fact... MOOSE works on platforms without a Fortran compiler at all... although we generally recommend that you have one (so that you can still link in any legacy routines you've written in Fortran).

I'm not specifically against Fortran... I was just trying to say that most new computational science development at the National Labs is NOT being done in it. We've moved on...

Comment: Re:Because C and C++ multidimensional arrays suck (Score 0) 634

by friedmud (#46964221) Attached to: Why Scientists Are Still Using FORTRAN in 2014

Easily fixed with libraries like Eigen ( ) and many others.

Most of the better "frameworks" out there come with their own proxy objects for multidemensional arrays (like )

Multidmensional arrays haven't been an issue (especially in C++) for quite a long time...

Comment: Re:We're Not (Score 5, Insightful) 634

by friedmud (#46964201) Attached to: Why Scientists Are Still Using FORTRAN in 2014

Firstly... 10^-15 is WAY beyond what most scientific codes care about. Most nonlinear finite-element codes generally shoot for convergence tolerances between 1e-5 and 1e-8. Most of the problems are just too hard (read: incredibly nonlinear) to solve to anything beyond that. Further, 1e-8 is generally WAY beyond the physical engineering parameters for the problem. Beyond that level we either can't measure the inputs, have uncertainty about material properties, can't perfectly represent the geometry, have discretization error etc., etc. Who cares if you can reproduce the exact same numbers down to 1e-15 when your inputs have uncertainty above 1e-3??

Secondly... lots of the best computational scientists in the world would disagree:

I could go on... but you're just VERY wrong... and there's no reason to spend more time on you...

Comment: Re:Why is anyone still using C++ in 2014? (Score 1) 634

by friedmud (#46964161) Attached to: Why Scientists Are Still Using FORTRAN in 2014

Not everyone needs to know all of the quirks of C++ to use it. My project ( ) does all of the nasty C++ stuff under the hood so that we can expose a very straightforward interface to non-computer-scientists.

It's working out well so far.

Object-oriented is still a good paradigm until the functional language people get everything figured out and there are enough computational science libraries written in functional languages. And if you want to do object-oriented and you still want to be fairly close to the metal for performance reasons then C++ is a good choice.

There are people that do object-oriented with C like the PETSc team ( )... and they have good reasons for doing so... but the result isn't necessarily less imposing to the uninitiated than C++...

Comment: We're Not (Score 1, Interesting) 634

by friedmud (#46964121) Attached to: Why Scientists Are Still Using FORTRAN in 2014

I saw this link bait the other day...

We're NOT using Fortran anymore...

Many of us at the National Labs do modern, object-oriented C/C++... Like the project I'm in charge of:

There are whole labs that have completely expunged Fortran in favor of C++... Like Sandia ( who actually went through a period in the late 90s and early 2000s where they systematically replaced all of their largest Fortan computational science codes with C++.

Those places that don't use C++ use C like the awesome PETSc library from Argonne ( ) which actually employs an object-oriented scheme in C.

The big name modern codes that are getting run on the biggest machines are generally done in C and C++.

I don't see that situation changing anytime soon as there is simply a massive amount of C and C++ libraries that will continue to provide the engine for tomorrows codes. The trend i see happening most often is utilizing C and C++ libraries with Python glue for everything doesn't need raw speed.... I think that trend will continue.

3500 Calories = 1 Food Pound