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Comment: ARM and x86 Products are Fundamentally Different (Score 1) 94

by svnt (#36508740) Attached to: The Ugly State of ARM Support On Linux

There are basically three x86 processor manufacturers. The two smaller players work hard to stay compatible because their livelihood depends on it. Most of the interface functionality is off-chip.

There are many well-known ARM processor licensees. They all strive to differentiate their product offerings. In the majority of cases all of the major peripherals (which are one of the primary opportunities for differentiation) are on-chip.

As such, where minimizing differences by processor was clean and relatively straightforward for x86, expecting it to continue to work well for ARM is nonsensical. I really think Linus is missing the forest on this one.

Comment: Really? (Score 0, Troll) 135

by svnt (#33694468) Attached to: FCC White Space Rules Favor Tech Industry

alternative to developing complex new sensing hardware

Please expound on "complex new sensing hardware." Like a poorly performing TV tuner? Or a crappy microphone receiver? Which of those strikes you as particularly new or complex?

You sound like someone who knows too little to be very functional but speaks too much to be easily ignored. Manager, am I right?

Comment: Re:I wish I saw this earlier (Score 1) 658

by svnt (#29972828) Attached to: Feds Bust Cable Modem Hacker

Generally it isn't illegal to install tint, it is only illegal to operate a vehicle on public property with illegal tint installed.

As an aside, in Oregon it is only illegal to have windows tinted over 35% if your car could not be reasonably deemed an off-road vehicle, or if does not have off-road equipment. What that means in practice is that if you want to have limo tint on your personal vehicle, all you have to do is buy an SUV. Then you can hide even more people with guns in the backseat than in a conventional vehicle. Perhaps you could even add a winch or bull bar to your Porsche to accomplish the same effect.

I guess the moral of the story is laws are often bullshit.

Comment: Re:Grrr... (Score 1) 853

by svnt (#29357943) Attached to: US Nuclear Power Industry Poised For a Comeback
Let me first disclaim that I understand the offense you've taken with respect to the article, and by and large agree with you.

Yes, I agree: the fear surrounding Three Mile Island is based more on Hollywood than physics. The article makes at least one other mistake:

Many scientists and environmentalists still distrust nuclear power in any form, arguing that it can never escape its cost, safety and waste problems.

How is that a mistake? Let's borrow from m-w.com for a minute, and let's select definition number one.

it's not true that many scientists oppose nuclear power.

Now, for the preceding statement to be true, the number of scientists that make up 27% of the population must fall short of the (admittedly loose) definition of many. Assuming the Pew Research Center uses decent polling methods, and pulling our numbers for the number of scientists in the USA (2,157,300) from the National Science Foundation, your statement equates to the following:

582,471 does not constitute "many."

Interesting hypothesis.

Comment: Re:Willingness to check == good programmer. (Score 1) 303

by svnt (#29126845) Attached to: While Coding, How Often Do You Refer To Language Docs?

Incompetent employees who are not lazy generally focus on the easy part of the job. Memorization is easy. Good design is difficult.

A boss early in my career told me that there are four types of employee: competent and lazy, competent and hardworking, incompetent and lazy, and incompetent and hardworking. Surprisingly to me at the time, he said most harmful to a company fall into the final category (as does your interviewer), because they cause the most damage, and they do it with pace and enthusiasm.

It is the same reason I get worried when I see a sports referee concentrating too hard on checking rosters and expiration dates. Their focus betrays the fact that they fail to recognize why they are really there.

Comment: Re:Ban how to host a murder while you're at it. (Score 1) 473

by svnt (#28546507) Attached to: On Realism and Virtual Murder

So again: when you have something beyond your imagination to support your position, please share it.

I'll relate an anecdote from Grand Theft Auto.

I had some free time and set about playing GTA III for three weeks straight, in my apartment, in a vacated college town. Now, that may suggest I am OCD, but little else.

I drove for the first time in three weeks once college was back in session. I was turning around in a parking lot, and the part of my brain that said "you're probably not going to clear that car" was overridden by the part that said "ah, fuck it, I'll just grab another one." I plowed into the back of the car. Turning around, at a reasonable speed, in a parking lot.

My point is that certain somewhat realistic gut reactions can be overridden by repeatedly doing so, at least in my case. For me, it was more of a "failure to act" than taking an action. It's not like I had an overwhelming desire to flip my car off a berm or drive into a crowd. It also didn't extend beyond the car simulations, my hypothesis for that being that they better emulate reality.

Comment: Re:What's this picture for? (Score 1) 435

by svnt (#28314871) Attached to: 14-Year-Old Boy Smote By Meteorite

I don't want to tear into the kid, but the close up of his hand in this article really looks like the eraser burns that kids occasionally give themselves in middle school.

My guess is that he saw the meteor hit and thought it would be really cool to say it bounced off him. Then, using a trick he learned from his friends, presto - instant burn mark.

Comment: Re:I'd Rather Drive or Take the Train (Score 1) 408

by svnt (#28274119) Attached to: In the next 12 months, I expect to travel by air ...

given a choice between one hour and 27, I'll take the 1 hour every time, no matter how much more relatively comfortable the 27 hour option might be - and that includes elements such as phobia of flying [...] (which I don't have, though I appreciate some do).

So, let me get your points straight.

  • You have no idea what a phobia of flying is like, but you're fully confident you're capable of suppressing it.
  • You express that you're open to any level of discomfort to save time. Two under-clothed, morbidly obese people with skin lesions, one on either side of you? No cabin pressure?

Is your world really this black and white?

Comment: Re:Well (Score 2, Interesting) 413

by svnt (#28268931) Attached to: Security Flaw Hits VAserv; Head of LxLabs Found Hanged

I'd be like Kevin Spacey in American Beauty...

You did see the entire movie, right?

Notable characteristics of Kevin Spacey's character: in the middle of a mid-life crisis, hated by his daughter, hates his wife, has sexual contact with a minor. Oh, and he happens to work at a fast food restaurant.

This is just a friendly suggestion, but before you tell this story to people you actually know, maybe refine your role model selection a little?

Education

Clemson Staffer Outlines College Rankings Manipulation 163

Posted by timothy
from the all-tiery-eyed dept.
xzvf writes "A disgruntled Clemson University staffer shows how US News and World Report college rankings are manipulated. Techniques include bad-mouthing other schools, filling out applications from highly qualified students that never intended to apply, and lying about class size and professor salaries." The school, naturally, denies that anything unethical went on. The New York Times has a more detailed article, which links to this first-person account of the presentation.

Comment: Re:Only Two (Score 1) 490

by svnt (#28133241) Attached to: My favorite simple machine is ...

the wheel itself is really just a lever rotating around its fulcrum

A lever rotating around its fulcrum would completely suck as a wheel.

Even assuming the fulcrum to be round (which generally makes for an unstable lever), the opposite radii of your 'wheel' would each change length, in opposite directions, by the circumference of your fulcrum - one length per revolution.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality through not dying. -- Woody Allen

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