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Comment Re: Not my experience at all. (Score 1) 100

Back then all the hardware was roughly the same speed. You couldn't saturate your disk bus with a simple tar because your CPU and memory had latencies measured in 100ns-ms, your disk could catch up. Disks are still roughly the same speed as they were 10 years ago. Also, js and html have become bigger and more of it can be found on random websites. I remember a time when you would optimize websites to fit all text, graphics and code under 50-100kb (~1-2s load time). jQuery alone is that size now and we sometimes load several libraries in a page. Our network is faster but our disk isn't. There is also a lot more graphics and bells and whistles, we are back to the 90s with the flashing under construction and dancing skeletons but now it's in code.

Comment Re: Port Design (Score 1) 113

The device should prevent this. USB has to negotiate higher currents so high currents shouldn't be present in the first place. Second, short circuits and overcurrents should be handled by the host as well as reverse wiring by the device. In the device it's easy: 1 diode short circuits a reverse polarity situation causing an overcurrent >500mA on the host which switches it's polyfuse.

Comment Re: Great way to get sued! (Score 1) 98

The argument could be made that the website was a pop-under and shared silently entire torrents. Loading a torrent is willful, you have to click and download and click again and have programs installed. Now, anyone with JavaScript enabled can be a torrent hoster or Tor exit node, *why yes your honor, anyone visiting these porn sites is being sued*

Comment Re: Solution! (Score 1) 363

The fingerprint reader is part of the encryption stack, it's built in chip does things so your average law enforcement agency can't just intercept or fake a true/false signal.

A counterfeit key reader is a security risk and when the encryption keys rotate (the software update or time triggers) it's built in keys won't match.

Comment Re:Electronic Engineer Here (Score 1) 220

a) That's a problem with closed source software, not your OS or your video card. Commercial software producers are not going to support older stuff forever because it isn't profitable but they also don't let you tinker with it or compile it on an older platform. But the point is that the old stuff should still work and not slow down your computer over time. I haven't used Flash in at least a decade for that precise reason but for simple animations it seems like keeping an older version of Flash or getting Gnash may be a solution.

b) Most (good) OS'es aren't vulnerable either. Linux is just coming out of their first LTS, Ubuntu had a few LTS versions and they're all still secure and stable and equally fast on that 80486 as it was 10 years ago. Antivirus is completely and utterly unnecessary for non-Windows OS (and no, market share has nothing to do with it anymore) as are standalone firewalls if your machine is well-managed. Firewalls do nothing against application-based attacks, only close ports that shouldn't be open in the first place or OS'es that somehow don't let you control the ports that are open.

Comment Re: RAID 0 is not for anything you don't want to l (Score 1) 73

Any classic RAID level is useless if you want data safety. So one of your drives in RAID10/5/6 returns garbled data (without an error), which copy/parity do you trust?

Also many 5/6 implementations won't actually calculate the parity chunk on reads, only for rebuilds. There are some pricey controllers that do full checksumming ala ZFS on chip but as with most hardware systems the SPOF becomes your controller.

With the drives becoming ever larger and faster, more data is being read but the errors per terabyte read are not really decreasing so the probability of you reading an error is nearing 1 faster than ever.

Comment Re:Electronic Engineer Here (Score 1) 220

The problem is that it appears to users as such. Our computers do not get measurably slower over time but we get used to faster computers elsewhere in our life and thus our home computer appears less fast or our TV is more blurry. It's a matter of perception mostly, some things like security updates may make things a bit slower but that's just what security requires (you can't expect your 20-year old computer to compute a 2048-bit key as fast as it does it's contemporary 256-bit keys).

Comment Re: What could go wrong (Score 3, Interesting) 405

The problem with putting regular panels next to the road is space especially in rural areas where the roads are often already cutting through previous private lands captured by the government. Capturing more land for use by city slickers' energy production (smart farmers will often already have solar panels) will not go over well and may be more expensive in buyouts and legal issues than developing brand new technology.

Comment Re: What? (Score 1) 268

No it won't bring anyone to jail. There are no laws concerning the sourcing of materials besides perhaps the Iranian/Cuban/Korean embargoes.

Sometimes you do source from someone "reliable" but somewhere along the chain (read: in China) someone will replace the original product with fakes or even the manufacturer factory will make a number of unauthorized devices.

Design specs typically don't even include such details as makes and model numbers as those can change at a moments notice even from the original manufacturer.

Comment Re: Supply chains (Score 4, Interesting) 268

The problem I've found with a LOT of USB things even the FTDI ones is that they're only putting out a stepped up 12V or even just 5V while classically the serial port was a bit above 12V.

Although the spec allows for +3V/-3V at the lowest end, most stuff just won't work well. Also the stepped up voltages seem to have a lot of noise and variation, again something the spec allows but "back in the day" few allowed for those.

Also, the USB data bus frequency leaks noise into the serial bus portion, sometimes visibly on a scope or definitely noticeable on a spectrum analyzer. The problem probably being poor design and shielding on modern computers. I've also had some issues with ground loops but that is only in very specific circumstances.

For critical applications, I've found the Ethernet serial servers are more reliable. Even running commands through an Arduino will do better in a pinch. But those cheap USB adapters are good enough for setting up a switch or uploading a firmware when the device is out of order anyway but are not intended to be permanently attached.

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