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Comment: Re:Are there open source tools... (Score 1) 64

by sberge (#49233809) Attached to: Open Source Hardware Approaching Critical Mass
I have no such illusions. But I would expect open source tools to at least function equally across FPGA brands, at least to the extent that people are able to reverse engineer the bitstream formats of the various architectures. The quality of software in general correlates strongly with the amount of manpower that is put into it, which again correlates strongly with funding. On that note, I think the case could be made that some FPGA producers would benefit from an open source and cross-platform toolstack, particularly those that are not currently market leaders.

Comment: Re:Are there open source tools... (Score 2) 64

by sberge (#49232123) Attached to: Open Source Hardware Approaching Critical Mass
There are several open source vhdl / verilog projects, including tools for simulation and synthesis, mapping, placing and routing. Examples: HANA, yosys, Icarus. But I guess you usually get better results with the free-as-in-beer tools from the fpga manufacturers. Which is a shame, since it would be nice to have some open source tools. Although everyone use the same hardware definition languages, it is a pain in the neck to switch between FPGA brands, mostly because the build tools are different and all pretty quirky.

Comment: Bury a tree (Score 1) 363

by sberge (#48688481) Attached to: Trees vs. Atmospheric Carbon: A Fight That Makes Sense?
Planting trees is fine, but hardly the best use of your time since trees tend to pop up on their own just fine. If you want to sequester carbon, your time is probably better spent preventing the carbon which has already been bound in existing trees from being released into the atmosphere. For instance by burying a tree in an anaerobic swamp. Less romantic, more effective.

Comment: Why are coders contributing? (Score 2) 488

by sberge (#48505031) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Non-Coders, Why Aren't You Contributing To Open Source?
Because it's fun? An opportunity to develop skills? Peer recognition? Because you need the software/bugfix/feature yourself and can't or won't make money out of it for some reason anyway so there's nothing to lose? Need a reference to further your career? These are the kinds of reasons I believe in. Do these apply to non-coders?

Comment: Quantum encryption (Score 1) 170

So you make a quantum mechanical system which evolves over time and which only reveals the correct key if observed at the correct time. Observing it at any other time erases (parts of) the required information. Practically difficult to make if we're talking about delays longer than picoseconds probably, but the problem specification didn't include a timescale.

Comment: "What about a service like Facebook or Gmail where (Score 1) 277

by sberge (#46652893) Attached to: NYU Group Says Its Scheme Makes Cracking Individual Passwords Impossible
anyone can register an account?"

FAQ says:

It is possible to use accounts that contribute to the line (threshold accounts) as a key to encrypt other account credentials (thresholdless account). So an attacker can know any number of those thresholdless accounts and cannot crack other thresholdless account or the threshold accounts.

Can somebody please reexplain this in a way that a dumb child would understand?

Comment: Re:ABC News: Comm systems shut down separately (Score 1) 382

The transmission was not shut down at 01:07 as I understand it, that was the last automatic transmission from the engine system. These are half-hourly, so you wouldn't expect another one if the plane disintegrated at 01:21.

A curious thing is that the last contact with the pilots was a handover from one ATC to another. The Malaysian ATC told them to contact Vietnamese ATC, which they acknowledged but never did. Normally, you'd do that right away (I think).

I never cheated an honest man, only rascals. They wanted something for nothing. I gave them nothing for something. -- Joseph "Yellow Kid" Weil