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Comment FM Radio (Score 1) 111

I think it's worth mentioning that the Pi Zero likely has the ability to broadcast data, though not in the way you might expect. (I can't say for certain because I don't have one yet) There are a few examples on the web about how to do this: http://www.instructables.com/i... I tried this recently on the Model2, and it worked well. Obviously you would need something on the receiving end to listen + decode, but I don't think it would be too difficult. People have been doing this with HAM radio for ages. If the antenna is a decent size, the range is pretty good. You could easily cover a house with low bitrate data. I'm sure this is in violation of lots of FCC rules, but meh.

Comment Python (Score 1) 90

I've been considering making a tutorial around python, where you generate a fake data set (with something like 7 billion values) and do the following:

Stage 1: loop over the whole data set and compute the true mean and the true standard deviation.

Stage 2: Take the same data set, but choose random samples (say N=1000) from the set, and compute estimates of the mean and the standard deviation. You can show how depending on which 1000 elements you choose, you'll get a spread of estimates for both which bracket the _true_ values which we know from stage 1.

Comment Monopoly (Score 0, Offtopic) 366

How is it that Google is being scrutinized for anti-trust (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-09-25/google-said-to-be-under-u-s-antitrust-scrutiny-over-android-iezf41sg) when Apple has been behaving like this for years? I don't want to start a flame war (I've used mac laptops forever), but I don't see how they continue to fly under the radar.

Comment Re:There are good reasons for gvt bureaucracy, rem (Score 1) 275

You give the scenerio of an overpriced hard drive purchased from his brother. Obviously that would be bad, but so is a system that is stuck in the mud. Doing nothing also costs money (in lost productivity and output). These losses tend to be overlooked because they are harder to quantify. That doesn't make them any less real.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not in favour of this particular surveillance program, but it is frustrating to see minor IT issues becoming roadblocks. I have seen similar situations to this one.

A better mode of operation is to grant individuals with local decision making power and periodically check their decisions to ensure they make sense. The $5000 hard drive you imagined would show up on the books and would be difficult to justify. Sure, it might get through one time, but eventually that kind of behaviour would be caught (and the responsible individual would be held accountable). Most people aren't interested in risking their job so their brother can make a few grand.

Always assuming that everyone is trying to screw the system just tells workers that it is better to do NOTHING than to do what's right. You will have a much more productive workforce if you operate under the assumption that people want to make good decisions.

I've seen far too much money wasted on supposedly transparent processes.

Comment Here we go (Score 1) 558

I just went through an upgrade / refresh cycle, so normally I'm not this up-to-date with my hardware

== Laptop ==
2012 Macbook Air, 2 GHz i7, 8 GB RAM, 256 SSD

I wanted to buy the new retina Macbook Air, but the situation with ports, processor, etc was enough to keep me on this thing for the time being.

== Home desktop ==
i5-4690K, 16 GB RAM, 512 SSD
Motherboard = I don't remember, one of the ones that works well with OS X (at some point I'll hackintosh it)
GPU GTX 970
Went with the 970 b/c it's way cheaper than the 980 (and apparently has way less RAM...which was annoying to find out after the fact)
I went with the K because at some point I'll goof around with overclocking

== Workstation 1 ==
i7-4820K, 32 GB RAM, 512 SSD
Motherboard = I don't remember, something about 4 channel RAM...
GPU Titan Black
I went with the i7 to test hyper threading performance. This machine also has very good single threaded performance (it shuts down the other cores and ups the clock on one of them).
This machine is due for a PCIe SSD upgrade (for testing performance where 32 GB RAM isn't enough)
The Titan is for double precision CUDA work.
I went with the K because at some point I'll goof around with overclocking

== Workstation 2 ==
Dual Xeon E5-2660 v2 (top says I have 40 threads), 28 GB RAM, 1 TB spinning disk (it was lying around...)
Motherboard = I don't remember, it has two sockets...
GPU GTX 980
The 980 works _very_ well for real time rendering.

I plan to switch to 4k monitors on the workstations relatively soon (I want a reasonably priced IPS panel to show up).

Submission + - Tails reaches 1.3 -- the Linux distro that Edward Snowden used gets major update (betanews.com)

BrianFagioli writes: If you have nothing to hide, you shouldn't care if the government spies on you, right? Wrong. No stupider words can ever be spoken. Your privacy should be very valuable to you, even if you only do squeaky-clean things. If someone was to snoop on my computer, they wouldn't find much; some family photos, a few games and other nonsense. Guess what? It is my nonsense, and I'll do whatever it takes to secure it. If you want to cover your tracks, however, the best way is to use a CD or DVD-based operating system, as there is no hard drive access — everything is run from the read-only medium. Edward Snowden took this approach when he wanted to hide from the NSA. His OS of choice? The Linux-based Tails. Today, it hits version 1.3 and many security issues have been fixed.

Comment Compute per watt (Score 2) 82

Until we reach a point where compute per watt stabilizes, it is highly unlikely that anyone would be interested in using old components to build a cluster. The fact that the parts would all be slightly different would be a headache too.
Older gear typically uses more power / FLOP, and is slower, so your time-to-solution takes a hit too.
If we get to the point where the power usage / FLOP for an N+1 device is basically the same as N, then you might see people do this, so long as they are okay with waiting longer for a result. Until then, don't hold your breath

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