Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Discussion is outdated (Score 3, Interesting) 276

by mc6809e (#48899691) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Is Pascal Underrated?

I have to agree, but it's too bad in some ways, IMO.

I used to get so much joy programming the metal or tinkering with the assembly that came out of the compiler.

Doing that is still possible, but it doesn't pay the bills.

The dream of abstraction is a bit of a nightmare for those that like to get into the guts of the machine.

GPU programming is another example, though Mantle allows the programmer to get a bit closer to the hardware.

Comment: Re:I won't notice (Score 2) 300

by The Snowman (#48895155) Attached to: UHD Spec Stomps on Current Blu-ray Spec, But Will Consumers Notice?

Exactly this. A well encoded DVD is plenty good enough for anything other than very large screens and for people with insanely large screens they won't be buying 4k because it will cost more than their homes.

Nope. I have a 46" 1080p HDTV and sit around 10 feet from it. I have compared DVD and Blu-ray versions of some of the same movies that I bought on both mediums. The difference is night and day. If I watch on my 1080p computer monitor, 23" and I sit about 2 feet away, it is even more noticeable.

DVDs annoy the piss out of me because they are so blurry. Blu-rays might not be the high-resolution king anymore, but they are certainly not blurry.

Comment: Re:JJ has a chance, maybe (Score 1) 412

by schnell (#48887755) Attached to: Disney Turned Down George Lucas's Star Wars Scripts

Maybe I'll give the Zahn novels another try. I mainly just remember finding the prose pretty stiff.

Nobody was going to nominate Timothy Zahn for the Nobel Prize in literature, you're right. But by and large his books (not just the Thrawn trilogy) made for entertaining stories that kept you turning pages and enjoying the experience. Even the Thrawn books had some lame plot elements (I personally believe that anytime you introduce clones into a novel or comic book you should go to Writer Jail for a mandatory 3 year sentence). But they were always fun to turn off your brain for a while and read. The same thing goes for most of the "Rogue Squadron" books.

Sadly, the rest of the Expanded Universe varied wildly from interesting and fun (Luke and his son's Force User Road Trip in "Fate of the Jedi") to dull (many of the earlier EU books) to depressing (most of the Yuuzhan Vong invasion which was just a way to induce PTSD in the next generation of Jedi) to full-on WTF (the Jedi council holding press conferences in "Fate of the Jedi" or the string of '90s book after book about zOMG somebody cloned the Emperor [again] or is rebuilding the Death Star [again].) There were some real gems in the EU but you have to pick through a lot of crap to get to them, and even then you won't get the full impact of some of the plot/character arc elements if you didn't wade through all the dreck that came before. So your time is probably best served avoiding all but a few of the most highly-reviewed ones.

Comment: Re:There is no anonymity (Score 5, Insightful) 109

by Lumpy (#48881623) Attached to: Barrett Brown, Formerly of Anonymous, Sentenced To 63 Months

A lot of these guys get caught because they open their yaps. A lot of us old timers from the early days never got caught. When the 414's were taken down I know several people that avoided it simply because they actually listened to the "trust no one" mantra. Just like how the guys that took over WTTW never got caught because they did NOT open their big fat mouths.


So a tip from someone old..... earning "cred" is for noobs. Keep your mouth shut and you really reduce the risk of getting caught.

Comment: Re:Some people say it's too pricy. (Score 1) 111

by mc6809e (#48881609) Attached to: NVIDIA Launches New Midrange Maxwell-Based GeForce GTX 960 Graphics Card

But I'd take this in a heartbeat over an AMD counterpart. The maxwell chips are leagues ahead of anything AMD's got.

WIth one exception: the R9 280x when used for DP floating point compute.

For about $250 you can get an R9 280x that in one second will do one trillion double precision floating point operations. That's about 10x faster than the Maxwell cards.

With such a card AMD should have had the scientist/engineer space for GPGPU locked up by now.

But, you know, they're AMD, so...

Comment: Re:Awesome, I shall buy one in a year (Score 4, Informative) 111

by mc6809e (#48880859) Attached to: NVIDIA Launches New Midrange Maxwell-Based GeForce GTX 960 Graphics Card

Personally I love the GTX 750. It gives the biggest bang-for-the-buck and running at about 55 watts max or so it usually doesn't require a larger power supply. It can run completely off motherboard power going to a 16-lane 75 watt PCIe slot.

It's the perfect card for rescuing old systems from obsolescence, IMO.

The only trouble you might have is finding a single-slot-wide card if your system doesn't have room for a double slot card, though in my case I found a double-slot card that I could modify to fit in a single-slot of an old Core 2 Duo E8500 system.

And heat doesn't seem to be a problem at all, even with the mod I did. The low power of the card means less heat. Even if heat becomes a problem, the card is capable of slowly clocking itself down, though I've never seen that yet, even running Furmark.

Comment: Re:Impressive (Score 1) 79

by IamTheRealMike (#48874623) Attached to: Oracle Releases Massive Security Update

How many unauthenticated remote exploits in a HTTP stack does it take to lose a customer?

Not many, I should imagine, but your comment is irrelevant because there were no such bugs fixed in this Java update. The way Oracle describes these bugs is horribly confusing. Normally we expect "remotely exploitable without authentication" to mean you can send a packet across the network and pwn the box. If you actually check the CVEs you will see that there's only one bug like that, and it's an SSL downgrade attack - doesn't give you access to the box. All the others are sandbox escapes. If you aren't trying to sandbox malicious code then they don't affect you.

Comment: Re:But Java... (Score 1) 79

by IamTheRealMike (#48874605) Attached to: Oracle Releases Massive Security Update

Java doesn't have security holes like C or C++ .... or so I was told.

Then again, I haven't seen too many security patches for gcc or libstdc++ or glibc

You're comparing apples and oranges. The "remotely exploitable bugs" in this Java update, like all the others, are assuming you download and run malicious code in the sandbox. GCC and glibc don't have protecting you from malicious code as a goal, in fact Linux typically requires all software to be installed as root no matter what. Obviously if you never even try, you cannot fail.

The interesting story here is not so much that sandboxes have holes (look at the Chrome release notes to see how many security holes are fixed in every update), but rather than the sandbox makers seem to be currently outrunning the sandbox breakers. In 2014 Java had security holes, but no zero days at all - all the exploits were found by whitehat auditors. Same thing for Chrome, people found bugs but they were found by the good guys.

I'm not sure if this means the industry is finally turning a corner on sandboxing of mobile code or not, but it's an interesting trend.

Comment: Re:Yep it is a scam (Score 1) 661

by mc6809e (#48872909) Attached to: US Senate Set To Vote On Whether Climate Change Is a Hoax

Sub freezing temperatures aren't necessary.

In the UK, for example, for every one degree drop in temperature below 18C, deaths in the UK go up 1.5%. The risk of heart attack and stroke seem to increase with dropping temperatures.

And in the USA, the mortality rate is highest in January.

Vietnam shows a similar pattern.

"Don't think; let the machine do it for you!" -- E. C. Berkeley