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Comment Not true. (Score 1) 153

There are airborne optical alternatives that can beat the * out of fiber - provided the weather is clear.

Fibre provides more frequency and better SNR than you'll get in the air, thus more bits

But a single fiber provides ONE PATH. Optics can provide MANY paths.

Imagine ten thousand fibers. Now imagine the ends poking out of a billboard in a 100x100 array - behind a 100x100 array of collimating lenses that beams the light toward your house. At your house imagine a telescope imaging that billboard onto a slide containing another 100x100 array of fiber ends. (Of course the fibers work both ways0 The air path may be of lower quality than physical fibers, but it's hard to beat a four orders of magnitude more paths. You'd need to run an actual bundle of hundreds or thousands of fibers from the billboard site to your house to beat it.
Now go back to the billboard and insert another 100x100 array of fibers through it - slightly offset so the same set of lenses but beams toward your next-door neighbor's house. (We'll assume the array is spaced out sufficiently that an optical telescope can resolve the two houses.) Repeat for ALL the houses served.

Not practical as described, of course. But it shows the principle: Wireless paths can multiplex spatially and reuse the bandwidth a hysterical number of times.

(Of course a real system using spatial multiplexing could be expected to use various wave-mechanical hacks rather than actual resolved paths - just as MIMO does down at radio frequencies.)

Comment Just a money grab (Score 4, Insightful) 150

The only reason they are making any changes is because the FCC is considering doing something.

As a point for comparison where I live there are two cable providers, Cox and Comcast, covering different parts of the city. Cox has a data cap, but it is 2TB. Also that is a soft cap. If you hit it, nothing happens. They may call and complain at you if you do it too much, but that's all. It is there to try and keep people reasonable, and so they can cut off someone in truly egregious cases (I've never actually heard of anyone getting cut off).

Now somehow both these companies can make money, yet only Comcast charges for overages and yet has much lower caps.

It is just a money grab. While some kind of soft cap or throttling can be needed to make sure people play nice (we can only have Internet fast and cheap if people share, otherwise the backhaul is prohibitively expensive) low hard caps with overage fees are just used to try and make more cash.

Comment Re:really... (Score 1) 506

Both Mormons and Muslims claim that their Scripture are merely copies of documents which came from heaven.

Actually, I don't think either claims that. I know Mormons don't. Mormons claim that the Book of Mormon was written by a series of prophets. The prophets were inspired, but wrote in their own words. Same as the Bible. The difference is in the method of collection and translation, not the method of authorship.

I think it's the same for Islam. Muslims believe Mohammed was a prophet, so his writings were inspired by Allah, but the Koran contains his own words.

Comment Here's a question for you to think about (Score 4, Interesting) 153

Do those same techniques work on frequencies through all different mediums, or do they only work in the air? (this is a rhetorical question by the way).

Whatever you can get in the air, you can get more in a cable or fibre. Sorry, that is just how it is going to be. Find the fastest wireless technology on the market, and then compare it to what you can get over a copper or fibre. Do it at any given point in history, and you see that it is always behind.

There's a reason for that, and I gave the reason.

Comment Guess what? (Score 1) 196

1) A PS3 is not a gaming PC, which is what we are talking about.

2) PCs go in to idle states BY DEFAULT, you have to work to turn them off. My PC, an exceptionally high powered one, idles at about 90 watts. A more normal PC idles at 50 or so. Not turning off, not suspending, not doing anything special. The processors normal C-states and throttling which are enabled by default.

3) You can turn your PC off. I do.

Comment It's pure fluff from an uninformed writer (Score 1) 196

Guy doesn't know anything about what he's talking about.

For one there is the newer thing as you note. Yes, newer stuff is more efficient. At a given performance target (FPS for a given scene complexity, number of MFlops, whatever) newer hardware is better than older stuff. Ok, fine but cost of always upgrading aside (something gamers do more than most people) there is the issue of energy of production. A large amount of human energy use goes in to making the stuff we use. If you want to save energy, a big part of it is buying less shit, trying to make stuff last longer. You don't see that energy cost directly, it is rolled in to the product, but it is very real.

Then there is the fact that, as you note, gamers tend to use better components anyhow. Like the PSU thing. The higher end the gamer, the better the PSU they tend to want and thus the more efficient it tends to be. I personally have an 80 Plus Platinum unit in my system because it was the highest efficiency, best built, longest lasting unit I could get my hands on. It was expensive, way more than most people are willing to pay for a PSU, but as a crazy gamer I'm ok with that.

Guy is just an idiot.

Comment Except he's full of shit (Score 2) 196

His numbers are way off. First a gaming computer is not "three refrigerators." A fridge/freezer combo uses like 400-800 watts when spun up depending on size and if it is frostless or not. Your typical reasonably high end gaming computer (high end quad core processor, single high end GPU) uses in the 300-400 watt range when fully spun up. There are, of course, higher end systems but they are not common as they cost a lot, for not a ton of gain.

Well the idea that there are tons of components or settings that'll just tank energy use is stupid. In terms of settings, ya those are default. By default a system will put its processor and GPU in to an idle state when not heavily loaded, and indeed most systems draw 90 watts or less when idle. In terms of componentry, there really isn't a ton of room for gain.

Like with PSUs. Any reasonable quality PSU that you might see in a gamer build is at least 80% efficient, and usually more like 85%. Go all the way to the high end, which many gamers already do, and you are only pushing 90-92% max. A gain, sure, but not much. If a system draws 300 watts DC going from an 85% (bronze) PSU to a 92% (platinum) PSU is the difference between 350 and 326 watts at the wall.

Then there's things like GPUs and CPUs. Well guess what? A give one is as efficient as it can be at a given performance level. There aren't the better and worse ones. You can't buy the efficient model GTX 980 and the inefficient model. They are the same. You can swap one kind of component for another and maybe gain efficiency. Like you can swap an AMD 390X for an nVidia GTX 980Ti and that'll use less power, but what if you want the AMD card?

Also there's the issue that usually the new ones are more efficient than older ones. Fair enough but in addition to the cost of upgrading that ignores the energy cost of producing the cards. Suggesting that everyone buy the newest shit all the time is not realistic, or energy efficient (a lot of our energy use goes in to making things).

This guy just doesn't know anything about computers. He's convinced that there's these vast optimizations that could happen, if only people wanted it. Not really the case.

Comment Re:Well, that's embarrassing (Score 1) 506

Meanwhile... the Quran is the actual scripture of Islam; if it was found to have existed *before* the founder existed (let alone wrote it, received it from Heaven, whatever)? That's kind of like kicking the pillars out from under a rather delicate tower... it would be akin to finding a written account of Jesus' life that carbon-dates to 30-40 BCE... now *that* would be faith-shaking.

Faith, in all religions, is designed to shake off facts that don't fit; that's they are religions, not science. There are many ways to work an earlier date into the doctrine, if needed, don't you worry. Just look at how Jehovah's Witnesses have handled the repeated failure of the end of the world to manifest itself; and they are by no means the only ones. So spare your glee; and any way, I think it is poor form, trying to make your own religion look better by pointing to potential weaknesses in others. You wouldn't need to gloat, if you really believed that what you stand for is better.

Comment Nice work developers! (Score 5, Insightful) 128

Thanks for maintaining LILO all these years. I certainly do remember LILO loading on my first installations of Linux. I tried to install it on an IBM PS/2 and the biggest challenge was their micro channel architecture. I don't think I was successful at all, but I learned quickly what the LIL... meant.

Comment Re:A govt employee charged with a crime? Shock!!! (Score 3, Insightful) 77

That Shaun Bridges was even charged at all is amazing. He's a government employee, and in most of the world it's very rare for government employees to be charged with a crimes because fellow government employees refuse to prosecute them. Thank your lucky stars, America, you are not like Australia where the press reports alleged corruption, the police ignore it, and it piles up and up and up:

Nah, it's pretty much the same in America.

The difference in this case is the nature of the crime and the victim chosen. No, not Ulbricht. The victim was the federal government, because they were going to seize that money anyway. You steal from the government, or attack the government in any way, they're going to drop the hammer on you. If your victim is an individual, well, it depends in large part on the socioeconomic status of that individual. A government employee can get prosecuted for killing a poor black man, for example, but it's rare. If you're a government agency and your victim is the entire nation, you're almost certainly going to get away with it. At most you'll be told to stop, but no one will be going to jail... well, except the guy who ratted the agency out. There's a good chance he'll go to jail, if he can be caught.

Comment Re:not so much on the upside... (Score 5, Insightful) 137

You are right, of course. What amazes me is the fact that there are people in this forum who have modded your comment 'Funny'. Personally, I can't see anything funny in knowing that we as a society, because of our almost complete lack of concern for what crap we are spilling in the environment, cause millions of birds to die a slow, agonizing death. I challenge anybody - especially the idiots who think it is funny - to eat a couple of broken plastic spoons every day and tell me they enjoy the process of dying from pierced intestines.

Apart from whether one should feel a normal level of empathy towards wildlife or not, it is actually a significant issue. It is scientifically well established that different parts of the environment are closely connected - we talk about food webs, for one thing. We know that taking out just one, significant part of the food web can have a dramatic effect on everything, sometimes in surprising ways; a common theme, though, is that when it happens, it introduces instability, and when it finally settles down again, it is a much lower levels than before and with much lower species diversity.

Yet, we keep playing with these things, refusing to open our eyes and ears, like there was no tomorrow; I just hope we don't turn out to be right in that respect.

Comment Re:The above is informative ? (Score 1) 560

Such things really does count against visiting the US compared to taking a week on a beach somewhere else.

It does, indeed. However, common sense would suggest that less intrusive measures would be applied than barcode tattoos if it ever got to this; in fact, common sense suggests that this sort of thing will never be more than the extreme views of a stupid poitician out to grab attention.

There are two things in what you say. One is the fact that many would be visitors stay away from America because of the news coming out. That is a real shame - America has a lot of interesting, impressive and beautiful things to see, and Americans are very nice people, in most cases. Unfortunately, there's also this massive, dark side that looms large in people's consciousness; I have, over the years, seem many, worrying stories in European news about people coming to the states as ordinary tourists and having extremely bad experiences. Things like one Danish young family, who did what all Danes do: go to a small restaurant, leaving the pram with their baby right outside the window where they could keep an eye. So, did criminals snatch it? Not at all, the police turned up, the couple ended up having to fight a long, hard battle in court against losing their child 'for neglect'. That is one couple, whose friends and family will never go to the States again. It is such a shame, because you guys could do a lot better.

The other thing is the question of making people identifiable - to be honest, I wouldn't mind being 'chip-marked' like many pets and horses are now. There are situations where you would definitely like to be identifiable, like if you're found unconscious without ID somewhere. Or perhaps more likely, as a simple convenience; it would be good if I never had to worry about remembering my passport or driving licence. I'm not worried about being monitored - anyone who carries a mobile around is being monitored, and probably hasn't a clue about what is being collected about them. I had a quick look at what is in my phone (Samsung) - something like tens of apps that I have not installed, and which have permission to snoop into everything including using GPS, microphone, camera and networking. If that doesn't worry me, why would I worry about being passively monitored by 'the government' in other ways, by a chip or similar means? At least they don't sell my data to scammers, the way private companies do. I think.

Live within your income, even if you have to borrow to do so. -- Josh Billings