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Comment Re:Not true - that is a total for _all_ contracts (Score 1) 497

Drag your eyes to the right and note that there is a separate product/service and award date. The nature of gov contracting means there is likely a base contract, and when a new job comes up (e.g. healthcare.gov) they mod the contract and issue a new award. These are 114 separate scopes of work, separate projects. ~113 of which have nothing to do with healthcare.gov.

I did see the right-hand-size description. Those different scopes of work can still be parts of the same big project. In most projects in government or/and private sector you bill for telecom services separately from software development and from system configuration and so on. Pardon for being somewhat cynical, but I am not surprised at all that they can milk the GOV for over 500 M$.

Comment Re:Not true - that is a total for _all_ contracts (Score 1) 497

That figure covers 114 separate contracts (see http://usaspending.gov/explore?tab=By+Prime+Awardee&fiscal_year=all&idvpiid=HHSM500200700015I&typeofview=transactions )

All these contracts are with the same "HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, DEPARTMENT". It seems like they itemized the whole work as a serious of smaller contracts. With the general governmental corruption and inefficiency it is quite believable that they could waste half a G$ on a single IT system.

Comment Virtual Credit Card Numbers (Score 4, Informative) 256

Citibank offers "Virtual Credit Cards" that are generated for you on demand. Each card is valid for one merchant only (the first transaction locks the merchant), has configurable expiration date and maximum amount limit. Even if stolen such virtual cards are of little use to the bad guys.

Comment Re:Realism... (Score 1) 125

Shorter range is a significant advantage today because it reduces interference. Interference is probably the main reason for lack of speed and reliability in modern city apartment WiFi.
RF propagation (and, thus, interference) is in no way dependent on the QAM modulation scheme and is the same for QPSK, QAM-16, QAM-64, QAM-256. Moreover, going to higher modulation constellations could force you to increase transmit power generating even more interference. Just my two cents from real world RF engineering.

Comment Re:Weird (Score 1) 675

Without the Soviet Union, they're hovering around the 10th largest economy in the world (about even with Canada, depending on what source you look at), and the 8th largest by population.

Not quite correct. According to the Purchasing-Power-Parity GDP measure http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP) Russia is #6 right ahead of the United Kingdom.

Comment Re:No (Score 1) 502

Basically, the device is converting high-entropy thermal energy into even higher entropy incoherent electromagnetic radiation (light output). So, the second law of thermodynamics is not violated.

Nonsense. Imagine, that your higher entropy incoherent electromagnetic radiation is absorbed back by matter and becomes heat again. In your model entropy will go down. Besides, black body radiation is the EM incoherent light of maximum entropy which is in thermal equilibrium with matter. LED light spectrum is almost monochromatic and has lower entropy than black-body radiation at the same temperature.

Comment Correlation does not mean causation (Score 1) 167

I am sick and tired of this kind of "research" that late Richard Feynman used to call "cargo cult science". Surviving in the North generally required more cognitive processing due to variety of factors like cold temperatures (one needs to invent cloth), scarcity of food (better hunting techniques, advanced social skills). Less light might affect eye sight but I think it is a minor factor when it comes to brain size. To summarize, living in the North did affect brain size and cognitive development but it is all but impossible to attribute that to the amount of light. There are other more important factors at play here.

Comment Re:Apps (Score 1) 228

When MeeGo comes in, say, in a year (and I'm being optimistic here), why would mobile developers care to divert resources from existing well-entrenched platforms?

I guess because of a cross-platform nature of the Qt-based MeeGo development tools. You develop for MeeGo and without much fuss cross compile to MS/Apple/Linux Desktops. Hopefully, Intel will port Qt to Android, then you can compile for it too.
Open Source

Submission + - London Stock Exchange Completes Move to Linux->

An anonymous reader writes: The London Stock Exchange has successfully completed the 'go live' weekend for its new Millennium Exchange, a next-generation trading platform powered by the open source Linux operating system. Developed and named by MillenniumIT, the Millennium Exchange's inaugural weekend comes after the LSE trialled Linux as a real-time trading platform on its Turquoise trading pool back in October — finding that the switch from its outdated Microsoft .Net platform brought a massive decrease in trading latency.
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