Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:The only Gaming Notebooks are P&P (Score 1) 90

Sadly, most people want their laptops, cars with auto transmissions, and 1GB data plans (not even enough for a 90's 56K modem).

I think it's significant that if the Oculus Rift succeed, these GTX 980 laptops will probably be the only ones that meet recommended specs. Also, current nVidias won't take advantage of important DX12 features, so they've been doing things like not overpricing new cards, GameWorks, etc.

Comment Re:AMD is on the road to nowhere (Score 3, Interesting) 133

Segmented addressing is actually a clever idea for 8-bit (8080/Z80) software compatibility, it's definitely easier that bank switching on 8-bit CPUs (2600 carts, mappers on NES carts, C64 and CoCo RAM/ROM swap, etc.) IBM probably designed the PC as a generic, but superior machine to run 8-bit CP/M software, and compete against Apple ][. Too bad they did not consider improving their '70s 5100 portable computer.

Comment Re:Intel - weird failure mode. (Score 2) 164

The 8MB problem is an Intel firmware bug (older, non-Sandforce controllers). If you don't care about your data, ATA "security erase" can make it usable again. I think I used the DOS-based hdderase, and after a few problems it went through. Intel's DOS-based flash idiotically ignores the SSD because it identifies itself as "BAD_CTX"...

Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 309

The only programming language available in all web browsers is Javascript, which is horrendously bad for large projects, even Google and Microsoft made languages that generate Javascript code (Dart, Typescript). Another problem is that Javascript code is plain text, offline apps entire code is easy to read (even after de-ofuscating).

Plugin? On iOS, Apple won't ever allow any plug-in that can run its own apps (everything must be from Apple store).

Comment Re:Fsck x86 (Score 1) 230

x86 survived because of price/performance caused by fierce competition (Intel, AMD, Cyrix, Rise, Centaur, etc.), and popularity of Windows/DOS. It was fun experiencing how x86 beat faster RISC CPUs (Alpha, PowerPC, Itanium) when there were builds of Windows NT.

Now, people are downgrading to ARM to use their low-power, low-performance portable toys (tablets, smartphones) running inferior operating systems. Sadly, Intel did an horrendous job with the Atom until 2-3 years ago, and Microsoft did even worse releasing the bloated Vista, which was awful for the now-dead netbook market.

Atoms are finally good enough, but still, the absurd 2GB RAM limit, and high power consumption (most Windows tablets can't charge from USB hub or PC) is still not good enough for Windows 8 (the real one, not RT).

And, please don't teach your kids x86 ASM. Modern C++ compilers generate good optimized code, runtime libraries are optimized. Besides, x86 code looks backwards, instruction set origins are from a 1970 terminal! (datapoint 2200), has endianness from hell, few registers, etc.

Comment Re:How about Microsoft Access? (Score 1) 281

I agree, it might qualify for non-profit versions of Windows. If Access doesn't qualify, anyway the MS Access Runtime is free. It's the full MS Access, w/o menus or IDE, although all menu options are available from VBA. Access Runtime might work in Wine, but I don't think the EULA allows it.

Besides, porting can be impossible, Access is quite unique: VBA (functions can be called in forms, reports, and even from SQL), Eval() (self-executing code), reporting is unique, Win32 API calls, and, it can automate any other Office application.

Comment Re:VBA ?!? (Score 1) 226

Learning kids to program using VBA is like learning to cycle using a pogo-stick.

...easy to use pogo stick commonly found in workplaces that can automate Excel, Word, Powerpoint and Access. I admit it's an awful programming language, but it's not that far away from PHP (Hack improves it), and Javascript (TypeScript, Dart).

Anyway, US schools have historically used technology as expensive educational toys, not for programming or other useful practical things. BASIC was barely taught in the 80's when it was built-in all micros/PCs, and most computer magazines included program listings, for example, Compute! and Family Computing.

"Falling in love makes smoking pot all day look like the ultimate in restraint." -- Dave Sim, author of Cerebrus.