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Comment Re:They could have bid with their Delta (Score 2) 55

They have the drawings, but that doesn't mean that they have all of the processes -- these are complex items operating at the edges of materials science. The Russians are still more advanced than the US in many metallurgical sciences. There are some alloys and specific metal grain configurations used in the RD-180 that simply no one else knows how to do but the Russian shops that build the RD-180 engine, which are under this embargo.

Cue the talk about when we were looking to resurrect some Saturn V engines, there were numerous compounds and other items that we didn't know how to produce either -- the proprietary process died with the one-man shop that knew the secret sauce and had the dialed in equipment.

Comment Heterogeneous Memory FTW (Score 1, Interesting) 22

I'm pretty pumped about playing with the dev kit. It has a heterogeneous memory architecture between the CPU and GPU. For lots of GPGPU applications, the latency of transfer between system RAM and the GPU can be a bottleneck. You're transferring huge chunks of data, and if you need to bounce the problem back and forth between the CPU and GPU, which is pretty common or if you have any real-time requirements, it can be a big deal. In many applications it can be 40%+ of time spent in just transferring your data back and forth from GPU to CPU.

For example, lots of people used the TK1 (predecessor to the TX1) for computer vision applications because it ran faster than the fastest GPU merely because you didn't have the memory transfer times. But the TK1 was slightly underpowered for these applications. The TX1 should close that gap, and really allow true GPU/CPU co-processing, versus shuttling around in memory.

Nvidia will be bringing heterogeneous computing to the desktop soon too -- they're already making it happen with IBM, and then their roadmap is to push it to x86 land.

Comment Re:This is why we don't trust them with anything (Score 2) 305

I fail to see how this is the case. I can't provide bagels to anyone in the US Government during my meetings because various laws do not allow it -- it would be seen as currying favor, and they must pay for it all themselves (well, you can give them up to $50 a year or something, but that's just one breakfast+lunch out of many in a 5-day meeting on the East Coast). But you can effectively donate $MILLIONS to a politician? I say that if there truly is a 1st Amendment issue at stake here, then the various government procurement officers should at least get in on the game too. Let the graft commence!

Comment Re:This is why we don't trust them with anything (Score 2) 305

Once you start telling people how they can spend their own money, freedom is just a joke.

You cannot legally buy votes. You cannot legally pay to have someone killed. You cannot legally buy another person. Obviously freedom is just a joke and we should be allowed to do these things. Or, one could realize that freedoms among people are various balancing acts, and that striking the right balance is a good one. I don't think that you should be able to effectively buy a politician's vote. It's corrosive to our government, and our government is whom we charge with enforcing our notions of freedom. Hence, more freedom is preserved if we restrict this one; similarly with slavery, contract hit jobs, etc.

Comment I don't buy it (Score 5, Interesting) 90

I don't buy these reports at all. I just don't see it. I would imagine that Google would like to partner a bit closer with some of the chip vendors -- get some low power extensions added, more direct hardware accelerations of some of the effects that are done in Android, maybe help define some other extensions, etc. But I seriously doubt that they're looking to get into the chip design business. To do so they would have to buy a slew of chip designers, and we just haven't seen them hiring or acquiring in that arena.

Chip design is very hard and unforgiving. Google knows this, and can't be looking to jump into the business. They might want to help tailor something, but that would be about it...

Comment Re:Resistors in a cable? (Score 1) 206

Agree, which is why you're also support to support the USB Type-C negotiation protocol, which typically both ends do. There do exist some dumb chargers though, and lots of dumb implementations exist where the controller just gives whatever was asked for even if it can't supply it -- cheaper to build that way rather than spend time on pesky programming and engineering. But the big thing is that you also have to worry about the spec of the cable. Likes of USB 2.0 cables really do only support 500mA, or 1A or current. 3A would fry them, so you need something in the cable to identify that you can safely pass that much current across them. This resistor lets them know...

Comment Re:Just like HDMI cables (Score 5, Informative) 206

USB type A to type C cables require a different pull-up resistor than the Type C to type C cables. Lots of vendors didn't do their due diligence and just put the USB-C spec'd pull up resistors in their A to C cables. As a result, devices try to draw too much power.

I bought one of the bad cables, and was wondering why my wall charger was flaking out. Went online, and saw the issue -- my phone was trying to pull too much juice, overloading the charger and putting it into brownout mode. Now, this is a 4-port wall charger, so my other 3 connected devices were sitting there going charging/not charging/not charging at sub 1 second intervals for the ten minutes that it took me to figure it out. After that, my charger was acting really finicky, and I didn't trust it anymore after that current overload so I junked it. So, yea. Not overblown. Actual problem.

Comment Re:Why a experimental launch carried 13 satellites (Score 1) 60

Space has gotten cheap enough now that it's not incredibly uncommon for High Schools to build cube and micro sats as a project. Most Universities have quite a few cubesats sitting on the shelf that we built as a class project. Many of these will never see space, so if you get a chance to slap it on an experimental rocket, it's better to potentially go down in a blaze of glory than get tossed into the trash in two years to make space for the next class's cubesat build.

Comment Re:Recon (Score 1) 37

The Honeywell T-Hawk and then next generation numerous other hand-launched drones (useful when not in windy situations, need bigger ones for wind) have been doing this in Iraq and Afghanistan for a very long time. They are very effective -- troops love them, because they can continually scout around any corners. It turned a significant percentage of ambushes into actually ambushing the enemy. Same concept, and has been in use for quite a few years.

Comment Re:Guns scapegoat for education / socioeconomics (Score 2) 822

In Switzerland it is a crime to carry a loaded firearm in public, except at a shooting range, unless you work in a security job and have been issued a permit. No conceal carry, no loaded carry, etc. Similarly, you can't store a loaded weapon. The safety culture is very strong, and people will turn you in for carrying or storing a loaded weapon.

So is that what you are advocating for the US?

Comment Re:The first domino has tipped (Score 2) 474

I do think that Apple allowing ad blockers in iOS really raised the visibility of this, and something is going to happen soon. I think that we'll either fade-away, or going to a consolidated subscription model. Google has a program where you pay something like $7/mo and ads on sites that participate are reduced/gone. The problem is that it doesn't stop any of the really annoying ads, because Google doesn't serve annoying ads.

My guess is that unobtrusive, text ads will become key again -- the thing that brought Google into existence as the behemoth it is. I've started blocking all of the annoying ads that frameroll, block sites, etc. But I leave Google ads on, because they're pretty unobtrusive. My guess is that this arms war will escalate and ad agencies will realize that they've been cutting their own throats by making things so annoying, virus-laden and plain breaking websites that many will fold, and sites will adopt a "clean" advertising policy.....I hope. The other alternatives aren't great.

Comment Re:Talking to someone is mean now? (Score 1) 554

I agree. Seems pretty simple. There will always be a bit of bickering or someone hogging the resource, but guess what: that's what happens when you deal with people. Not a tough problem to solve.

That said, the way that it will get fixed is autonomous driving/charging. We'd rather spend a ton of time making a system whereby you line the cars up in a first come, first served manner and get out. Then when the first car is done charging, it drives off into a parking spot and the next pull up. It would be like an automated gas station line. I guarantee that it's being worked on right now, if not already coming out with the next generation of EV's. Tesla already has automated driving, and has shown videos of an autonomous self-plugging in car charger.

Comment Re:I don't think so. (Score 2, Interesting) 182

The Nvidia Tegra X1 and other modern chips that came out late 2015 areo n par with most of the Celerons and even the i3's and i5's in some instances. It definitely might be the first year of true x86 peer laptops from ARM, but maybe another year or two until they nail everything and start taking significant market share (that's a big IF -- they have to nail everything, while Intel continues to miss a step or two).

Comment Re:Setting kids up for failure (Score 2) 257

Ah, the parental anecdote. It sounds like oyu have a tough time -- maybe try changing tact? I've found that parenting is an exercise in finding and leveraging soft power (versus hard power like them going to bed hungry, re-feeding them supper in the morning if they didn't eat it, etc). I'll match one.

I sit my kids down to eat before everything is on the table, and bring out of the kitchen and plate for them what I want them to eat -- whether it's something new, veggies, etc. Then in the 5-10 minutes where we get drinks, bring out the rest of the food and serve it, they've typically eaten 50+% of whatever I first served. They're somewhat hungry and haven't snacked and will naturally graze at what's in front of them to pass that time. Then, as you mention, because they've tried it and not found it horrible they'll usually eat the rest of it along with the rest of the food. Soft power in action -- nothing forced, but guiding the activities such that you preferentially select for the outcome that you want.

Not rocket science. Does it work every time? No. Did it work right away? No. But we formed a habit, and we're good now. It works the vast majority of the time, and they eat great elsewhere as a result. When we go out to eat or go to school, they're used to eating all of those things, so they do tend to eat a good chunk of their carrots, peas, etc. and if they don't then oh well -- they eat healthy at home, what's one meal? It's not worth fighting over in those instances since you've already won in the vast majority of the cases.

16.5 feet in the Twilight Zone = 1 Rod Serling