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Comment Re:Too bad they pushed Love out (Score 4, Interesting) 205

SYS V needs to go open next, not that overloaded slowlaris, but lean mean SYS V

I was under the impression that the entire POINT of SYS V was for the major UNIX vendors to re-implement the guts of Unix as a clearly, enforceably, proprietary product (after the CONTU recommendations and the resulting copyright law changes explicitly extended copyright to software), then move to it and orphan the original development thread. (This might make opening it a hard sell to the members of the consortium.)

There were at least a couple issues with the proprietary status of the AT&T code:

One issue was that AT&T was still a government-regulated utility monopoly and there were some requirements about disclosing and releasing non-telephone-related inventions they came up with.

The big issue was that, before copyright applied and before software patents were hacked up (by recasting software as one embodiment of, or a component of, a patentable machine or process), the only protection was trade secret and the related contract law. Trade secrets generally stop being enforceable when the secret out of the bag (with some details about whether the claimant contributed to the leak). Bell Labs had shipped code to a LOT of educational institutions. When the U of New South Wales used the System 6 kernel code and an explanation of it as the two-volume text for an Operating System class, the textbooks became an underground classic. This, along with AT&T's benign-neglect licensing policies, led to the burst of little, cheap, generic UNIX boxes, as this was also when microcomputer chips were just becoming powerful enough to do the job.

Up to then a big barrier to entry was that every new machine needed a custom O.S. to deploy, and these were enormous, machine specific, and mostly in assembler. That made it an expensive, undertaking, suitable only for financial giants. But all but under 2,000 lines of Unix was in C, and the entire kernel, which included essentially all the platform-specific code as a subset, was well under 10,000 lines of code. If you had a C compiler and assembler for your new machine, it was a matter of a few man-months to port it and get it up and running. Essentially ALL the utilities and applications came right over. You didn't have to train users, either, because they all worked pretty much just like what they'd used in college.

The game was:
1. Grab a bootleg copy of the code.
2. Port it to your machine and get it working.
3. Go to AT&T and ask for a license "to port Unix to our new machine and sell it."
4. AT&T, as a matter of policy, completely ignores any "violations" you may have committed during the porting phase and cuts you a license at a very reasonable price.
5. You "port Unix in an AMAZINGLY short time" (like the ten minutes it takes to tell Sales to go to market) and you're in business.
6. You (with your new business) and AT&T (with their small cut) slap each other on the back and laugh all the way to the bank. PROFIT! for you. (profit) for AT&T.
7. Because of the policy in 4., everybody ELSE manearly everbody's king a new machine knows they can do the same thing. So many do. AT&T gets a rakeoff from ALL of them. PROFIT! for AT&T. Far more than if they went dog-in-the-manger, held up the first few for all the traffic would bear, and got no more customers for Unix.

And because of this, it was in nearly everbody's interest to NOT challenge the AT&T-proprietary status of Unix. And it stayed this way until SCO's management screwed up and altered step 4. (Even then the case turned on other issues, so it never did come to the point of attacking AT&T's claim that Unix code was proprietary.)

Comment Re:Why only trees? (Score 1) 73

piezo generators have less than a percent of efficiency is why.

I thought it was closer to 80%, at least theoretically. Can you give me a reference for that "Less than 1%" number?

Whether this maps into anything like that number in a practical device for converting "found" mechanical power - such as tree sway or vibrations - is another matter entirely.

Comment Can this be co-installed with the stock version? (Score 2) 178

Can this be co-installed with the current version (for instance, on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, the latest Long Term Support Ubuntu release)?

Or do you have collisions which require you to purge the old one in order to try the new one, or which cause foulups if you don't?

(Honest question. I've seen a lot of that kind of thing with other projects. So now I'm a bit shy of trying the latest-and-greatest release of any tool on the production machines I depend on for time-critical work.)

Comment Re:Sputnik days are here again (Score 1) 246

And why exactly would Kim who fancies himself a god want to provide Daesh whose cause is to create an Islamic state with assistance in the form of a nuclear weapon?

I don't see many upsides for Kim or the DPRK in doing so. Everyone likes to paint Kim as a mad man. It might be true he does not always display what we consider to be sound judgement. Still he is self interested enough to hand a group that would turn on him as fast as he can blink a real actual WMD ( as opposed to the nasty but hardly massively destructive things we tend to use to justify drone strikes ). He isn't a lunatic.

Comment Re:Huh? (Score 1) 70

3D printed objects aren't the strongest due to the way the layers are laminated together. I imagine the last place you'd want a weak join is on a 150+ foot long blade swishing through the air.

You betcha.

Especially since a spinning blade gets more efficient as it gets faster. Higher speed = lower torque for a given horsepower density, so a higher tip speed ratio (TSR) wastes less energy "twisting" the air downwind.

Efficient wind turbines run at a TSR of 6 or higher - which means that in windy conditions the tips are running at an appreciable fraction of the speed of sound.

If one of those puppies breaks off it's NOT the kind of baseball bat or boomerang you want coming toward you, whether flying or summersaulting along the ground. (Imagine a caber toss with giants and redwood logs.) Not to mention what the resulting unbalanced spinning does to the other blades and the pylon.

Comment Re:Asinine (Score 4, Insightful) 128

If operational security was taken seriously or important these organizations would be much much smaller. The more people who know a secret the harder it is to control. If the three letters want to be effective they need to go back to their original mandates and downsize to the minimal number of people required to execute on them.

The FBI tries to be the everything of law enforcement, they should not. In fact they should probably not even have arrest powers. I would argue make them investigators of federal but domestic crimes only. Let them investigate, turn the arrest warrants over to the marshal service to pick folks up.

Comment Re:More nation-wrecking idiocy (Score 3, Insightful) 592

You are correct of course but suspect familiarity is what causes people to become less cautious and imprudent. "Hey I have driven this road a 1000 times and its always been just fine" they stop paying attention they drive faster. You go and make it different and suddenly they start paying attention again and yes slow down until its again familiar.

I hope some serious LONG term studies about center lines with good comparable areas with similar traffic and conditions are identified for test and control groups is done before a broad policy change like this is effected.

We have a lot of unlined roads, center and edge here in rural Virgina and people including me drive plenty fast around areas we know well. While it might not be worth the invest for the county or the state, all things being equal I certainly wish more roads were lined.

In places were there isn't much artificial light besides your head lights it can be hard to see a dark road surface at night. When someone elses headlights are in your face it can be especially hard to figure out how to safely share the road with the coming traffic in the dark. You can't see the edges well, due to the light pointed at you, you don't have the center line to judge by and the road is just wide enough for two vehicles to pass by each other while having no shoulders. You don't want to suddenly put one drive wheel in the soft dirt even at 35MPH that can result in a loss of control. TL:DR - people started painting reflective center lines on roads for a reason.

Comment Re:On paper, this is a good decision (Score 0) 133

livelihoods of local food sellers.

Are you sure? There as long been a question on where the dividing line is between food aide and 'dumping'. If you have a bunch of starving people around they will pay there last penny for something to eat. That is a strong intensive for local producers to find a way. You take that away when some third party comes a long to relieve the starvation. The result is you end up with large pockets of the world that never create a sustainable economy.

The problem with facebook's "free basics" is that its not really Internet access. Its limited social media and fact lookup. Which might be useful, but is it just useful enough that it prevents anyone from being able to deliver real access to the open internet by undermining the market?

So sure by blocking something like this you deny people something that might be a useful resource for them, but you also hopefully prevent them from being locked out of something much better, that will probably come along eventually if you keep Mark's grubby little mitts off the Monopoly button.

Comment Re:That may be. (Score 4, Informative) 506

SJW, tern used by ignorant primitive assholes to describe educated caring intelligent people.

Sometimes, certainly. There are also times when its correctly applied, like at Oberlin where the cafeteria was protested because the "Chinese" food was inauthentic. "Cultural appropriation" is one of those examples that simply should not be thing. Imitation is the highest form of flattery. There is no sensible reason a minority should be upset that the majority wants to act like them, even if they do it badly, unless its being done in a mocking away. Its not "theft" or abuse its an indication your culture actually has power and influence.

Certainly the school cafeteria was not trying to insult Chinese students bad serving bad Chinese food, that is a ridiculous premise. The only interpretation is Americans respect and desire Chinese cooking and dishes, but might not know how to actually make them.

I think the Oberlin example proves there are SJWs. These are people who are actively seeking something to be offended by. They are pulling attention away legitimate injustices and grievances and wasting everyone time on their pet problems that don't actually harm anyone. So they hurt real social causes. They also cause real harm to innocent people doing harmless things.

Comment Re:LOL (Score 2) 506

I think you are on to something here. We need to remember why there are inappropriate questions in the first place.

The essential reason is because asking them is likely to be insulting, deeming, or otherwise hurtful. As you point out my computer feels no pain, emotional or otherwise. So with pain out of the way we are left with other forms of abuse.

The only way to abuse a thing really is to use it for an unintended and wasteful purpose. Using a perfectly serviceable car as a boat anchor for example. Its abusive because it will make the car less useful in the future, the car was never intended for service as a boat anchor, and there are cheaper better things to use for boat anchors.

So here we are left with Cortana. Other than queries designed to trigger say something like SQL Injection that could damage the software or the database behind it, I fail to see how any particular query could be abusive under any reasonable system of morality. Microsoft is personifying a thing, and then being upset about the fact others don't embrace their personification and treat that thing as if it were a person. This is ridiculous. What's next are we going to start shipping every 8 year old boy who pulls the head of his little sisters Barbie off to juvie?

Comment Re:The Republicans are destroying our lives (Score 5, Insightful) 186

Right, because an international agreement negotiated by a Democratic administration is some hope to be blamed on the Republican party.

Pull your head out of your ass. The Establishment is the problem, If you are remotely considering voting for HRC or Rubio, THIS IS YOUR FAULT.

Vote Sanders, or Vote Cruz as you like but do not allow HRC or Rubio to get nominated!

Comment Re:legalism is a crap philosophy. (Score 1) 582

I live out in the middle of no where but Cville might be the nearest big city. I aggressively avoid going there because driving and parking is SO PAINFUL. It has to be the worst place I have ever driven a car. I mean driving in Boston is easier!

I can't describe the layout of streets in Cville as anything other than "aggressively stupid". Now add all the UVA students who are typical distracted, intoxicated, or stopping in completely random places for people to jump in or out of the cars and its the stuff of nightmares. There are few "main" roads other than US250 and US29 that go across town, so pretty much all travel is on "neighborhood streets". It does not surprise me that people are injured and even frequently. Speed isn't really the problem. Quite honestly I am terrified the entire time driving around there. Even crawling at 25mph anyone could step out from between two parked cars that you could not see with enough time to stop.

What Cville needs isn't speed limits and speed traps, its already got plenty (cops there are actually quite aggressive compared to most places IMHO, the professors experience not withstanding), it needs mirrors on polls so you can see around corners and over parked cars. It also seriously needs to demo some building and put in more off street parking, so it can disallow parking on the busier streets.

Comment You're right, it's bogus. Dang! (Score 1) 118 mentions none of this.

You're right, it's bogus.

I was told that decades ago. But a little research (in the online patent databases) shows that there were ionization smoke detectors for decades before that (back in the tube era, even, when beta emitters were easily available to the common man). NASA says their only involvement with smoke detector design was (in collaboration with Honeywell) coming up with a variable-sensitivity design to stop annoying false alarms in Skylab.

Sorry to have repeated a myth. B-b

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