Forgot your password?

Comment: Re: Antecdotes != Evidence (Score 1) 376

by jd (#48043385) Attached to: Will Windows 10 Finally Address OS Decay?

Agreed about anecdotes. However, I can say that I have to reboot my Windows 7 PC weekly because of serious degradation in performance. I have installed a fair bit of software (the PATH can no longer be extended) but there's only about three games (Freeciv, Kerbal Space Program, Elite: Dangerous) and no apps, toolbars or junk. The rest of the software on there? MariaDB, Ingres, GRASS, QGIS (OSGEO is basically Cygwin, so I've now three incompatible Cygwin distros on Windows), HOL 4, Active Python, Active Perl, Erlang, Rust, Blender, PoVRay, BMRT - the sort of stuff you'd expect to find on any PC, nothing fancy.

And Netscape. Which is a horrible resource hog and is honestly not usable in its current form. I have abandoned all efforts to get Chrome usable. I'll probably deinstall both and switch to Amaya. Which barely does anything, but it does it tolerably.

Comment: What, wait?! (Score 2) 52

by jd (#48043267) Attached to: Leaked Docs Reveal List of 30 Countries Hacked On Orders of FBI Informant Sabu

You mean to tell me that the US doesn't even trust the other Five Eyes nations' spy agencies to be able to do this?*

*Yes, I know, to get round legal restrictions, it was very normal for the US to spy on the citizens of the other four and to exchange that data for information collected on US citizens by other members of Five Eyes. However, we now know all the agencies DO spy on their own citizens, routinely. So the US can ask GCHQ to wiretap British citizens in Britain, it doesn't need to spy on Britain itself. This behaviour suggests wheels within wheels.

You mean to tell me that the US isn't all caught up in the US-UK "Special Relationship" stuff?**

**Most Americans were unaware there even was one and get horribly confused when the British talk about it.

Comment: Re: Who cares? (Score 2) 206

by jd (#48043165) Attached to: Why did Microsoft skip Windows 9?

Linux is indeed better. Not because of Open Source (the code doesn't care) but because it has fewer bugs (about 0.1% of the bugs per kloc), non-intrusive strong security (rated EAL 5+ on conformant hardware, conforms to B2 Orange Book standards), superior multi-processor support, superior memory management and superior networking.

Graphics? Not an OS issue. That's a GUI issue. Never confuse how something gets data with what it then does with it. The GUI is not central to Windows (as demonstrated by console mode startup, but should be obvious to anyone running it as a headless server). The core OS functions are, and always have been, resource management, virtualization, security and stability. (Filesystems are virtual layers on top of physical disks, so are resource management and virtualization.)

Linux is better at the things an OS is meant to do. Windows has an adequate GUI, but the OS is abysmal. Besides sales, the only reason the game industry likes Windows is that it has useful libraries - DirectX (an alternative to the functions the GUI itself provides) and easy access to GPU functions (bypassing the OS altogether, running on bare metal).

The reason Linux doesn't have these? Look in the mirror. The face you see was quite capable of working on GGI, KGI or Linux Framebuffers, of helping in the Berlin project, of submitting patches for SDL or Avagadro, or even hacking Wine to improve support for DirectX, CUDA or other graphical features.

I'm no innocent myself, but I own up to my guilt, I don't blame the OS (which IS innocent).

Comment: This one is easy. (Score 2) 206

by jd (#48042917) Attached to: Why did Microsoft skip Windows 9?

Windows 10 IS Windows 9. Microsoft engineers are even still calling it Windows 9. The source tree is the same, there have been no major changes.

What has happened is that Windows 9 has been getting very bad press and is still riddled with bugs. Instead of releasing a version number nobody will buy and would only have to patch almost immediately anyway, OR getting slagged off for Yet Another Delayed Release, Microsoft is renaming it version 10 and delaying the release until the bugs are sorted.

You will observe Microsoft has been talking up Windows 9 for some time, but now all talk (and apparently all memory) of it has ceased. Newspapers suffering amnesia is amost acceptable. Slashdotters??? WTF??? I'm sorry, but there is no-one in or around IT that has a single, solitary excuse.

Comment: Re: Same conversation at GM a while back. (Score 2) 125

by jd (#48042777) Attached to: Boeing Told To Replace Cockpit Screens Affected By Wi-Fi

There have been cases of Boeing 777s and modernized 737s developing unexplained system faults. Do not be so sure that RFI was not to blame. These have had much worse reliability than other Boeing models in recent years and as no other faults have been offered by Boeing as explanation, it is illogical to simply dismiss the one fault we know about as unrelated to the unusual number of abnormalities and crashes specific to these two models.

Obviously, Boeing has no interest in being honest about the problems they know about, be they software or hardware. Nor are they likely to Open Source anything, so there is no possibility of scrutiny by an independent party.

Simple logic (and self-preservation) says they have an unattributed defect capable of causing catastrophic failure, and a defect that can potentially cause catastrophic failure, therefore fixing the defect is essential.

The cost? The cost is insignificant. Boeing is hardly poor and is quite capable of covering the airlines' cost as this is a manufacturing defect. The airlines? They're making enough money that they can afford riots on board when seats are tilted. Besides, this is the cost of doing business. There's a price for bad decisions, all other sectors (except, apparently, banks) are expected to take the rough with the smooth. If several go bust because they chose unwisely, that's how life in business goes. You pay your money, you take your choice. Besides, they'd still be doing better than the German in Last Crusade.

If I went into business and made bad choices, would you be telling people to ignore my expenses? No? Good. If I'm not fit for purpose as a businessman, I've no business expecting support. So why should Ryanair, a notoriously incompetent company, deserve better? Because they're too big to fail? Not a good reason.

Comment: Ok, several aspects to this. (Score 2) 492

by jd (#48038673) Attached to: The $1,200 DIY Gunsmithing Machine

First, guns don't protect, never have, never will. That is not the function of a gun. So anyone on their high horse should look to see if they're suffering altitude sickness.

Second, the design of these specific rifles is a non-issue. The gun market is inherently grey, which means regulation is minimal to non-existent. There's no white hats in weaponry of any kind. And, yes, that includes the re-enactment stuff I work with. I know that, recognize that and accept it*. No shades, just a thick, pea-soup foggy grey.

*That is why I despise "goody two shoes" arguments from both extreme camps. This isn't black, this isn't white, this is murky grey. I own it for my part, I hold nobody to a higher standard than I hold myself, but I refuse to hold them to a lower one either. Own it.

Third, the design of any regular weapon is a non-issue, but nothing stops you from designing an irregular weapon. With modern cheap hardware, a 3D printer and suitable low-cost materials, a person is quite capable of designing a 3-5 mile range sniper rifle that can be controlled via telerobotics from the home. We already know that low-cost cruise missiles with ranges in excess of 100 miles can also be built at home. With 3D printing, the costs become lower. With advances in technology (remember, the $5000 100-mile cruise missile was designed over a decade ago and it wasn't even close to what budget efforts could do), you can expect far greater ranges, far greater precision and far greater payloads today.

This, again, goes back to this being grey hat technology. If a black hat wanted to use such devices, we'd know about. Or, rather, the survivors would. America still exists, so black hats either don't have the courage of their convictions or they don't have the skill. Either way, they're not worthy of consideration. Worthy of being dumped into a deep oceanic trench, bu not worthy of consideration.

White hats? If white hats were building actively guided systems capable of that sort of range, you'd be seeing miniature computer boards running Linux, Squid and Tor relays launched into stable orbits that crossed nations with restricted network access. We don't. We see "peace corps" infiltrators attempting to install such devices directly, along with who knows what malware, causing international incidents and seriously destabilizing international relations, as part of neocon stupidity. White hats putting in a passive alternative with no hostile software and no damage to other nations -- that's an OBVIOUS way to do good for everyone and to minimize harm. But, no, they either don't have the skill or the courage of their convictions.

So it's all grey. That's all there is. Thick, pea-soup fog.

Comment: Re: Whips and manicles (Score 1) 206

by jd (#48012047) Attached to: My toy collection is ...

If it's not an abacus, it can't count. Most of the rational people have quit fet due to database failures, update disasters, an incredibly primitive unthreaded discussion format and a contingent of highly abusive individuals. Abusiveness and primitiveness has done for tech forums, too, which is why Kuro5hin has been in death throes for some time.

A community is never stronger than the people who stand behind it and, in sadly far too many cases, the people standing behind the community are crouched down and in hiding.

Comment: Re: So, systemd integration is suddenly a good thi (Score 1) 395

by jd (#47979851) Attached to: Debian Switching Back To GNOME As the Default Desktop

Doesn't matter. It's not tested or validated for every possibility. Hell, given how easily I can break Debian, I wonder if it's tested at all these days. There is no point in using unvalidated setups with a distro, if you're at that point then you should roll your own.

Comment: Re: Funny, I Left GNOME 3 Mainly Because of System (Score 2, Insightful) 395

by jd (#47979833) Attached to: Debian Switching Back To GNOME As the Default Desktop

Software that is designed correctly separates out what it does, how it does it, and how it interacts with the outside world.

Ergo, software that is correctly designed is user-agnostic. If the user thinks in a particular way, whatever that way happens to be, it is the job of the software to accommodate that. If it does not, it is not software for users, it is software that has users. Possession is everything.

Software that is correctly designed is configuration-agnostic. If the configuration file states something is enabled, then that is enabled. It is not the job of the software to say the file really means something else. If the configuration is broken, state how and why. Clearly. If the configuration is old, import and update. But don't tell me, or anyone else, what Joe Bloggs thinks would look better. I don't care. And the more other people's preferences get shoved in my face, the less I will care.

Theo clearly has the right idea - the only way to get past the morons is with an attitude of utter contempt. Bugger all else matters, apparently.

Comment: I'm switching off Debian. (Score 0) 395

by jd (#47979755) Attached to: Debian Switching Back To GNOME As the Default Desktop

Linux-From-Scratch is easier to use, less user-hostile and less determined to tell me how to think.

ANY software that pretends to know better than me how I want things done is software that deserves to burn. And then sink into the swamp. It is that precise attitude that got me to kick the Windows habit and led me away from the early ix86 BSDs.

I not only think better than a mere machine, I think better than your average distro compiler. I can spec better, I can build better, I can test better. Debian had, up till now, been acceptable, the packages are convenient and it's no great pain to tune. Now, Debian ranks lower than Fedora. I'd recommend the MCC distribution before either and that was last updated during the Ice Age.

Programmers do it bit by bit.