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Comment: Re:lack of keyboard (Score 2, Informative) 204

by smilindog2000 (#26891039) Attached to: Second Android-Based Phone Announced

I guess I agree with you there, though I miss my old iPhone. My G1 seems like a Model T in comparison hardware-wise, but I don't think I can go back to the no-keyboard situation. My old eyes just don't work well enough to find those small keys.

I looked at all the photos of the new phone. Here's some insights from a G1 owner:

- The screen is *exactly* the same model. It's nice, but only 2.5". Every time I hold an iPhone, what really strikes me is that huge 3.5" screen.
- They *still* don't have a headset jack. This is possibly the dumbest lack of a feature ever in a smart phone, and they kept it! The non-standard headphones HTC ships suck, you have to have a bulky dongle to use anything else, and you can't charge while listening to music. Sucks, sucks, sucks!
- The camera lens appears larger, possibly meaning that HTC decided not to ruin all photos with a crap lens like on the G1. Of course, it could just be the same lens with a new style case.
- Being HTC, there's no way this phone has a bigger battery than the G1, and battery life will suck.
- The slot for the speaker looks identical the the G1. On the G1, it fills up with lint, and you can't hear calls when there's background noise, like while driving or at a restaurant (much to the pleasure of everyone else).

Until someone fixes the damned headphone issue, the speaker, the camera, and increases the screen size on an Android phone, I'll stick with my crappy G1.

Comment: Re:Not because there's only 1 (Score 4, Informative) 136

by smilindog2000 (#26855219) Attached to: Competition For the App Store Is Mounting

I've had an iPhone, and currently own a T-Mobile G1. In short, Android is a solid competitor (the only competitor IMO) to the iPhone OS. The actual G1 phone however, sucks big time, as GP suggests, though he didn't get close as to why:

- The speaker slot gets clogged with lint, and now I have trouble hearing the phone
- While the camera has auto-focus and more pixels than iPhone, HTC screwed up with a crappy lens that ruins all photos
- There's no headphone jack. Instead, HTC provides crappy headphones using a non-standard extension to the micro-USB jack
- The phone is too thick, and not nearly as sleek or well designed or packaged as the iPhone
- The battery is tiny in comparison to the iPhone.

Basically, some US company (Qualcom? T-Mobile?) must have said "Here's the specs for you, HTC", and then HTC delivered on the specs, but screwed up the phone.

While there are fewer users of the G1, there are proportionally fewer developers. Many of the best application spaces are already dominated on iPhone, while they're still open on Android. I believe that future Android phones will gain in market share vs iPhone, making development for Android a wise choice.

Comment: Re:I didn't know Feinstein was a Republican.... (Score 1) 873

by smilindog2000 (#26819555) Attached to: Senator Diane Feinstein Trying to Kill Net Neutrality

Diane has been technology illiterate for her entire career. In general, her heart is in the right place, but as Silicon Valley's senator, she's shamefully lacking in any sort of reasonable understanding of the issues.

Quite seriously, she hears, "let's protect our children", and "let's protect intellectual property", and that convinces her to support Trojan legislation designed to allow telcoms to put toll roads on the Internet.

Programming

+ - Another crazy new language effort - Language #42

Submitted by
smilindog2000
smilindog2000 writes "I've got this wacky idea: I'll write the world's most completely awesome computer language, and naturally get rich, famous, and attacked by hordes of crazed hot chicks. The language is called 42, and has the following insane goals: Run faster than C; Foster extreme code reuse; Compile to both hardware and software; Run faster on reconfigurable computers than Wintel boxes; Allow users to extend the language however they like. I need a few of you super-geeks out there to tell me flat out it's impossible. For some reason, that always motivates me. There's more detail at this discussion group."

Comment: Re:It must be real (Score 1) 603

by smilindog2000 (#26203957) Attached to: EEStor Issued a Patent For Its Supercapacitor

Here's the skinny on EEStor, so far as I can read.

Their new patent is a clean-up version of their old patent. Unfortunately, it's still a piece of marketing BS. Look at claim 1. It has 15 steps! If you avoid any one of them, you do not infringe. The rest of the patent is similar - not designed to protect, but designed to market an idea.

The physics of EEStor seems to have been replicated by half a dozen other companies, so we can probably begin to believe that the EEStore ultra-capacitors are possible in principle. However, a fully charged EEStor capacitor will explode on impact with about the force of 100 sticks of dynamite. I've thought about this problem for two years, without any solution. Hopefully the guys at EEStor are wiser, but no one else on the Internet has a solution either.

In short, don't bother believing this until you see it.

Comment: Re:Normal people don't need faster computers (Score 3, Insightful) 139

by smilindog2000 (#26072249) Attached to: Intel On Track For 32 nm Manufacturing

Good point. With solid-state drives coming down the pipe, even that bottle-neck will be somewhat relieved for what most people do (lot's of disk reads, few writes). I write programs to help designers place and route chips. The problem size scales with Moore's Law, so we never have enough CPU power. I'm part of a shrinking population that remains focused on squeezing a bit more power out of their code. I wrote the DataDraw CASE tool to dramatically improve overall place-and-route performance, but few programmers care all that much now days. On routing-graph traversal benchmarks, it sped up C-code 7X while cutting memory required by 40%. But what's a factor of 7 now days?

Microsoft

Microsoft Unveils Virtualization Strategy 141

Posted by kdawson
from the getting-all-hyper dept.
billstewart writes "The Wall Street Journal reports that Microsoft will be announcing a virtualization strategy on Tuesday. Of course there's plenty of focus on the competition with VMware, including the obligatory reference to Microsoft's entry into the browser wars prior to cutting off Netscape's air supply. The pieces of the picture will include: an alliance with Citrix Systems, owners of XenSource; acquisition of privately held Calista Technologies of San Jose, which has software that speeds up the performance of applications running in a virtualized environment; and lower price for Windows Vista used on virtualized computers. Microsoft also reversed its earlier position and will now allow the Home Basic and Home Premium versions of Vista to run under virtualization. The company confirmed its plans to deliver its Hyper-V hypervisor within six months of the launch of Windows Server 2008 (betas available now), which is expected this quarter."
Windows

+ - Programs cannot be uninstalled in Vista

Submitted by
Corson
Corson writes "I am surprised nobody seems to have reported this on /. yet. Possibly after one of the latest updates in Windows Vista, two strange things happened: first, the Uninstall option is no longer available in the Control Panel when you right-click on older programs (most likely, those installed prior to the update in question, because uninstall works fine for recently installed programs; the Uninstall button is also missing on the toolbar at the top); second, some programs are no longer shown on the applications list in Control panel (e.g., Yahoo Messenger). A Google search returns quite a few hits on this issue (e.g., here, here, here, and here) but everybody seems to be waiting patiently for a sign from Microsoft. But M$ seem to have no clue or they would have fixed it already. I am just curious how many of you are experiencing this nuisance."
Technology (Apple)

+ - The Pixo Secret: iPods Run OS X and Always Have.

Submitted by Redrum
Redrum (891519) writes "Everyone thinks that Apple's iPod runs an OS called Pixo, and that the iPhone ushered in a brand epoch based on OS X. That myth has been busted: the iPod runs Apple's own Mach/BSD kernel, and Pixo is only used as a graphics layer. Daniel Eran outlines the story behind Pixo and what OS X means for Apple. It's no joke; the story was confirmed by Tim Monroe, a member of Apple's QuickTime engineering team as is easy to verify yourself: Those OS X iPods? They're Already Here! Pixo, ARM, and the Mac OS."
Power

+ - America's First Cellulosic Ethanol Plant->

Submitted by
hankmt
hankmt writes ""The state of Georgia just granted Range Fuels a permit to create the first cellulosic ethanol plant in America. HECK YES! This is very exciting...why?"

In short: First: Because cellulosic ethanol produces ethanol from cellulose, which all plants have, instead of sugar, which is only abundant in food crops. Second: Because while corn ethanol only produces 1.3 units of energy for everyone unit of energy that goes into growing the crop and converting the sugar to ethanol, cellulosic ethanol can produce as much as 16 units of energy for every one unit of energy put into the process.

The new plant will be online, producing 100 million gallons in 2008."

Link to Original Source
Software

+ - Human Resources Technology Productivity->

Submitted by
fabianchina
fabianchina writes "Over 20 years ago I started my career as an Engineer in the newly emerging IT business, and yes, it was pre-IBM PC. For many years I listened to reports telling me that the introduction of computers was not having any effect on staff productivity. Pah!, I thought, showing my age. If I was younger I would probably say, Meh!. Back in the dark ages just before the dawn of the PC I could see productivity improvements happening right before my eyes so the disparity between the reportage and the reality that I was seeing on the ground really ticked me off."
Link to Original Source
Editorial

+ - Solar Power

Submitted by
Rami Nasser
Rami Nasser writes "Solar power is one of the most promising green energy sources. Many countries have recently started spending a lot of money on research and development to improve the efficiently of solar power and to make it more economical. There are a lot of great successful examples; including:
-Solucar Solar Tower; a solar thermal power generator tower in Seville, Spain
-Nevada Solar One Solar Power Station; a 64 MW concentrating solar power plant just outside of Las Vegas, Nevada
-The Solar Updraft Tower; proposed type of renewable-energy power plant. Air is heated in a very large circular greenhouse-like structure, and the resulting convection causes the air to rise and escape through a tall tower. The moving air drives turbines, which produce electricity. A research prototype operated in Spain in the 1980s.
-Solar City: The Future of Nanosolar; hoping to leave today's silicon solar cells behind, the Palo Alto company Nanosolar is creating paper-thin solar panels harnessing nanotechnology, a product that could revolutionize solar power."

Mathemeticians stand on each other's shoulders while computer scientists stand on each other's toes. -- Richard Hamming

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