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Comment: Why would a paywall keep trolls out? (Score 1) 379

by putaro (#47694595) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Would You Pay For Websites Without Trolls?

It might keep a few out but there are people who get their jollies out of trolling and the outrage that they create and might be willing to pay a few bucks for their hobby. It's been going on at least since Usenet (mid 80's).

I do enjoy small scale discussion on Facebook. I usually limit people who can post on my comments to friends of friends and that keeps the discussions more civil and usually more relevant. Perhaps the real problem is just that the number of people who can post a comment on many discussions is just too large. There is the risk of living in an echo chamber, though. Maybe a discussion site that creates groups with a representative sample of views, etc.

Comment: Re:Those aren't business decisions (Score 1) 371

by putaro (#47691363) Attached to: Companies That Don't Understand Engineers Don't Respect Engineers

They get an unlimited bonus structure so that there's no limit to how much they will sell. Sales people are greedy bastards and they will follow the money trail management creates, regardless of whether it is good or bad for the company. Structuring the sales compensation is very important - I've seen many instances where the salespeople are doing things that are not good for the company but maximize their payoffs.

Why do sales people wind up in charge? Because they sell everyone else on how wonderful they are. If you don't have a management team with some real knowledge of the business you will wind up with self-promoters running everything.

Comment: Those aren't business decisions (Score 2) 371

by putaro (#47688643) Attached to: Companies That Don't Understand Engineers Don't Respect Engineers

I'm an engineer who runs a business. I know the tradeoff between technology and costs. And figuring out how and where something should be validated is not a "business decision". It might be a business process decision, but unless it affect the bottom line (for example, the validation costs $50 so we only do it when a customer is just about to purchase) it's not a business decision.

There's a real problem with engineers not understanding business just as much as there's a problem with business types not understanding engineering. I had one of my engineers say to me once "I don't understand why we have sales people" (hint for those of you nodding along with him - it's so we get income so the engineers and everyone else can get paid). I've seen companies where engineering gold-plated the systems architecture to the point where the company couldn't make money with the deployed hardware.

Business isn't all that complicated and anyone competent as an engineer should be able to understand it (you may not like it but that's another issue entirely). Figuring out how the costs of a system affect the business, how the features in a product affect its salability, these are things that a good engineer will understand, and will probably wind up explaining to the business people.

Comment: Re:Go vertical! (Score 1) 168

by putaro (#47688529) Attached to: Processors and the Limits of Physics

Think different!

Maybe instead of stacking the chips, you put one on the bottom and have it double as a backplane and then mount additional dies to it vertically (like itty bitty expansion cards). Then you can get some airflow or other coolant flow in between those vertically mounted dies.

These kinds of funky solutions will only show up when they're cost-effective (that is, absolutely needed). The reason we stick with flat dies (and single die packages) is because it's cheaper to make/mount a single die in a package. However, when the performance is really needed we'll start seeing some innovative solutions.

Comment: Go vertical! (Score 5, Interesting) 168

by putaro (#47684603) Attached to: Processors and the Limits of Physics

Stacking dies or some other form of going from flat to vertical will get you around some of the signaling limits. If you look back at old supercomputer designs there were a lot of neat tricks played with the physical architecture to work around performance problems (for example, having a curved backplane lets you have a shorter bus but more space between boards for cooling). Heat is probably the major problem, but we still haven't gone to active cooling for chips yet (e.g. running cooling tubes through the processor rather than trying to take the heat off the top).

Comment: Re:Japan is still pretty backwards in some ways (Score 1) 144

by putaro (#47675057) Attached to: Telegram Not Dead STOP Alive, Evolving In Japan STOP

No, it does not double as the national bank. The Postal Savings Bank IS one of the largest (if not the largest) bank but it is NOT the national/central bank. The Bank of Japan is the equivalent of the US Federal Reserve and issues the money and is the lender of last resort.

16.5 feet in the Twilight Zone = 1 Rod Serling