Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Self Defense (Score 1) 205

From your safe place behind a safe computer, you can say that.

Go ask the people in Syria if they feel like they are taking part in a "more humane and less deadly conflict".

That's like saying "Global Warming isn't true because it snowed today!" The Syrian conflict is a horrific, awful anomaly. Even then, it's pretty restrained by historical standards and more than offset by the otherwise tranquil world scene at present. It should also be noted that much of what Assad is doing isn't involving guided munitions because he just flat out doesn't have them. And his opposition has no airforce at all.

Compare that to 100 years ago and a similar conflict probably would have resulted in flat out genocide and deliberate extermination of 70% of the population. Current estimates are that about 0.5 - 2.5% of the population has been killed in the conflict. That's comparable to the American Civil War, but the vast majority of the world is at peace so as a percentage of world deaths it's pretty tiny. The Syrian conflict is almost notable because the world is otherwise so peaceful.

Comment Re:Self Defense (Score 1) 205

Obama's killed more innocent civilians with drone strikes to "kill a few hostile bad actors" than Bush ever did. And last I checked Obama wasn't a member of the GOP.

The GOP leading candidates will *happily* tell you that they'll carpet bomb Syria. That's not partisan, that's their campaign *platform*. That's not partisan bullshit, that's what they proudly argue is what *needs* to happen. Hillary and hawkish democrats are for targeted strikes and Bernie and the more liberal democrats are for nothing at all.

We're in a fucking twilightzone if it's now a 'Liberal Smear' to "accuse" GOP candidates of supporting their own campaign platform and stump speech. "HOW DARE YOU ACCUSE CRUZ OF SAYING WE SHOULD CARPET BOMB SYRIA UNTIL THE AND GLOWS!"

You don't get to accuse Obama of being "Soft on terrorists" and also accuse him of carpet bombing at the same time. Obama and GW Bush both were quite restrained in their air campaigns. That's not partisan, but GW Bush isn't a fucking GOP candidate so my point stands of "GOP Presidential Candidates".

Comment Self Defense (Score 2, Interesting) 205

Arguably while war is all about winning, it's not at "all cost". We (ignoring GOP presidential candidates) will not bomb an urban civilian center these days in order to kill a few hostile bad actors. Arguably the availability of precision munitions changed the moral balance from "bomb a city into submission" into the modern sensibility of "only bomb specific targets of military importance."

Even though war is a terrible and bloody affair, we as societies have constantly been moving towards more humane and less deadly conflict. It's one thing to shoot someone shooting at you. It's quite another to kill someone in cold blood. War is arguably largely about self defense today: "I have to shoot you in order to not die." The shift I see happening with autonomous weapons is that there is no imperative to shoot people shooting at you. It might be expensive or costly to lose an autonomous infantryman, but if you can capture without killing I suspect we'll expect our autonomous soldiers to exert "self control". Obviously if it's a shooter killing civilians you would be morally justified in stopping them using violent force if necessary but otherwise autonomous troops effectively become more akin to police officers than soldiers in their relationship to the population.

Comment Re:Power efficiency is good in some places, not al (Score 1) 337

Here's the thing though. Even if chips remain equally powerful or 10% slower... if they could fit a 40 core Xeon into a 10watt atom power profile that would be a MASSIVE performance increase in mobiles. I'm relatively satisfied with CPU performance these days with a dual Xeon. If it meant I could get a current workstation in a mobile form, great! However I'm assuming that GPUs do keep improving and we finally see openings for specialized chips for physics and raytracing--the last two areas that would really benefit from dedicated hardware. Neither have ever caught on because Intel keeps improving quickly enough that a small specialized chip market can't get to market before Intel outpaces them.

Comment Modularity (Unix "Do One Thing" philosophy) (Score 1) 234

The only option to achieve that through process not physical security is to write everything sufficiently modularly that every module is untrusted and interfaces through documented APIs. This can actually be a good requirement since it should make updating any one feature relatively easy. I know of at least one large fortune 500 company that is rewriting everything on the assumption that the network is publicly accessible. This has the nice side effect that you can actually make it publicly accessible to mobile employees.

If every developer is assigned a specific module to write that does a very narrow set of goals then all they need to do is take in data of format XYZ and output data of format UVW. At some point you'll need someone in house for architecting what modules you need developed and an integrator to handle the bits you seem to be paranoid about exposing to developers but it would limit the potential exposure to any one developer going AWOL.

The downside of course is that depending on the task it can get very difficult to break up a large project into discreet chunks/interfaces.

Comment Re:vote with your wallet (Score 1) 302

Apple will be the gatekeeper for music, and Netflix for video.

Apple is so far from the gatekeeper for music these days that it's laughable. Ironically it's the Zune subscription that has succeeded. It was just Spotify who made it happen because of its cross platform nature.

Microsoft saw the future and then tried to sell the past (mp3 players) as a bundle and failed. Spotify did the exact same thing (minus songs you get to keep) for $5 less and did gangbusters.

Now Apple is trying to play catchup in the music realm.

Another point on this. When Apple started locking in the music industry, the labels also matched to avoid too strong of a monopoly. So Zune music service pretty much just said "Give us what you're giving Apple" and was able to build out their library. Spotify wouldn't have stood a chance in hell of negotiating those contracts if iTunes wasn't already getting sweet digital rates. Netflix wrenched open the door and now Amazon often has the same films because the studios both want a bidding war and they also aren't going to spend too much time negotiating most of their catalogue.

Comment Re:Why would anyone tolerate this bullshit!? (Score 1) 720

Hearing these conspiracies is like listening to right wing nuts go on about how everybody is eventually going to be driven into a FEMA camp.

And as to $0.99 to change your theme color? Well, I guess that's not paranoid since that happened in 1996 with "Windows 95 Plus!" which mostly just added theme colors for a few bucks. So nothing new there. But "Want to install a third party browser?" 1. They would get sued out of existence. 2. only if the third party browser charged a price in the store which none do on any other platform. You don't see chrome on charging money so no it won't cost anything.

Comment Re:Oh good. (Score 1) 154

Microsoft already allows Win32 in store apps -- you do have to rebuild, but create a UWP app and bring in the Desktop Extensions SDK and that give you Win32.

That's only a very small subset of Win32. Project Centenial is in the works though to allow full Win32 apps to run in the WinRT sandbox.

As to battery life, if you can play games on your phone you can run a Win32 App without worry.

Comment I've converted millions to Windiws apparently. (Score 1) 165

I've worked on ads that were seen by tens of millions of people, who knew that in the process they became windows users! I should apparently be hired as a Microsoft Evangelist. /s

Windows was also used by Weta on those films. Every film has at least one windows license doing something. That means every Ubuntu user is simultaneously a Windows and OSX user.

Comment Re:HDR (Score 1) 37

Narrow bandwidth is exactly what you want from a display's color primary. The more pure the display is the more saturated it is and the wider the color gamut. If someone could really create an LCD with a perfect 630nm red, 550nm green and 450nm blue without any other frequencies it would be a fantastic display. The ultimate displays currently available today are lasers because they naturally produce extremely narrow frequency bands exclusively. The second best are probably though LCDs + Quantum dot. Which are already almost achieving the full Rec2020 gamut.

Comment Re:What the? (Score 1) 37

Full LED displays (NOT LCDs with LED backlights) can easily reproduce a wider range of colors if they use the right LEDs (some displays have added an extra color like yellow, some simply move the RGB LEDs further apart on the spectrum). Other display types can do this as well, but it's not as simple as with LEDs.

Full LED displays are only used in like ballpark score boards and billboards and their color is terrible. Unless you mean OLED, in which case just call it OLED. Almost every LCD display today uses a white LED and an array of filters.

Most "Full LED" displays are just 6500k LEDs with a colored filter. So a white LED + LCD filter array is pretty much the same as a white LED + Filter coating. 'Regular' LCDs are also just as good as OLED at color gamut if not better. You take a UV LED and you use quantum dot emission as your color mask and you have an incredibly pure color output. Which by the way is what you want out of your red green and blue primaries, not them "further apart" (further apart to where infrared, ultraviolet and... not sure where you want green to move to.). Rec2020's green isn't "further apart on the spectrum" compared to Rec709's green from blue it's just a narrower, more saturated green. It's a question of purity not 'distance'. Saturation is product of the width of the spectrum emitted not its wavelength.

Comment Re:What the? (Score 1) 37

It is impossible to separate "HDR" photography from "HDR" displays because they both do the same thing - fuck with contrast in different areas of an image differently in order to overcome limitations of the resolution/gamut of the format/display.

Wow ignorance and attitude what a lovely combination.

Neither inherently 'fuck with contrast'. HDR photography is just capturing a High Dynamic Range of values. So SDR would be 0.01 nits -> 100 nits. HDR would be 0.01 nits to 1,000 nits. Almost every decent camera today can capture at least that much dynamic range.

. The display you used as an example is "HDR" via the "Peak Illuminator" feature. It's just dimming the LED array, as all "HDR" displays are.

Nope. HDR is overdriving the LED array not dimming them. Yes, most HDR displays do use localized dimming but OLED doesn't, it just displays each pixel by itself and it can get up to 600+ nits which isn't as good as LED but every other pixel can be black black to 600 nits. Yes if you don't have enough LED resolution then there can be some localized tone mapping errors but on really good displays with 120+ zones the haloing of bright objects on dark is pretty subtle, comparable to flare in a good DLP rear projection display.

There is definitely a benefit to HDR. Just as it's different to look at a photograph of a street lamp vs looking at a street lamp, having that real peak values up in the thousands of nits gives your eyes and brain the illusion of being 'more real' because it's not trying to trick you into thinking you're looking at a bright object... the object is actually bright.

Slashdot Top Deals

Real Users never know what they want, but they always know when your program doesn't deliver it.