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Comment: Re:People getting wierd about liquid water (Score 1) 221

by meta-monkey (#46787301) Attached to: Kepler-186f: Most 'Earth-Like' Alien World Discovered

Oh yes, it was the most implausibly bizarre book I've ever read. And the interior of phobos was hollowed out to be a habitat where the sentient saurians (hadrosaurs if I recall) had been living for the last 65 million years. Yes, something was done to keep the planet from freezing. I wish I could remember the name of that book...

Comment: Re:People getting wierd about liquid water (Score 1) 221

by meta-monkey (#46786923) Attached to: Kepler-186f: Most 'Earth-Like' Alien World Discovered

There was a sci-fi book I read, and for the life of me I can't remember the title. One of the weirdest books ever. In it, dinosaurs had escaped to Phobos before they died out, and the earth had a massive world-changing event in which mountains split and formed into rocket engines that propelled the earth out of the solar system entirely and to another star. This was the aliens' way of meeting new species...bring them all to them.

It was a truly bizarre book, and I wish I remembered the title...

Comment: Re:Multiple heads? (Score 1) 253

by Firethorn (#46783685) Attached to: SSD-HDD Price Gap Won't Go Away Anytime Soon

Actually, "client" workloads (personal computers) aren't very parallel so the requests are served sequentially. As such, this won't help too much.

Most client machines don't have multiple drives mirrored either. I was thinking purely in a server setting when I made the comments, though I'll admit that I didn't specify.

A HD with two head systems still wouldn't match an SSD for random reads, but it'd be much better than one. Depending on the use it's seeing, it could even employ different algorithms depending on the use mode it's seeing to help speed things along. In addition, more cache might help it during a large sequential read, allowing the heads to leapfrog each other better. Like I said - engineering and programming nightmare, but an interesting thought experiment.

By the way, if I remember correctly multiple requests on flight were implemented on SATA standard for client drives, 10 years ago or so on (SCSI had them for quite a while). I'm not sure Windows XP uses these queues.

You're talking about how the system queues multiple data(read/write) requests with the drive, and the drive possibly delivering them out of order(because it's using an optimized path to collect all the data), right?

I assumed that capability from the start. The REAL trick to the system is that to date it's one read head per platter, thus one device serving all the data. With two head systems, the question comes up of how you optimally assign said demands between the two head systems to most efficiently move the data.

Comment: Multiple heads? (Score 1) 253

by Firethorn (#46781695) Attached to: SSD-HDD Price Gap Won't Go Away Anytime Soon

This is actually a very interesting proposal. While I imagine the engineering and programming would be a relative nightmare*, it would provide a number of options for hard drives.

While it wouldn't double performance in most cases, especially not sequential operations, for random operations it'd be almost as good as two drives. Maybe better if the access is typically really random and one head can 'field' mostly the outer disc calls while the other catches the inner disk ones.

*Just look at the difference between programming a single thread application and multi-threading!

Comment: Re:It was a "joke" back then (Score 1) 275

One thing that isn't obvious though is that it's a 30Hz monitor. All the 60Hz ones, as far as I can tell, are still in $1000+ territory.

I should probably have put some disclaimers in my post about affordability and suitability. I'm not a refresh snob but I can't help but think that 30Hz is a bit slow for gaming, perhaps even video watching.

Comment: Re:I'm not going to stand for this (Score 5, Funny) 308

by Paradise Pete (#46778445) Attached to: Switching From Sitting To Standing At Your Desk
I once had a job that involved a lot of standing. One day the boss brought in some shoes for us to wear.
As we put them on one guy said "What's the difference? These are just regular old shoes," but it turned out they were actually orthopedic shoes, and so he said "Well then, I stand corrected."

Comment: Re:The Ruling Class (Score 1) 803

by meta-monkey (#46778181) Attached to: Study Finds US Is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy

Sure, but management sure isn't looking out for the best interests of the workers. Unions, unfettered, ruin companies. Management, unfettered, abuses workers. There needs to be a balance between the two, because a compromise (doesn't hurt the company, helps prevent the workers from being exploited) exists somewhere in the middle. However, in the last 35 or so years, the pendulum has swung far, far in favor of management. This is why today we have record corporate profits, the stock exchange through the roof, but rampant unemployment, low wages, and cut benefits.

Comment: The courts are a different branch and not elected. (Score 1) 803

by Ungrounded Lightning (#46776465) Attached to: Study Finds US Is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy

then why the recent decision ... that allowed individuals to contribute directly to *all* candidates, with no overall cap on contributions?

Because it'a a SUPREME COURT decision. We have three branches of government and only two are elected.

The supremes are appointed, for life (subject only to impeachment for high crimes, like the president). They have no re-election issues and can vote their mind without affecting their own tenure.

The court has repeatedly struck down campaign spending restrictions, because they're limits, not just on free speech, but on the POLITICAL speech that is the reason it is an enumerated right in the first place.

But it takes a while for a law to produce enough damage to give someone standing to challenge it, and to bring it to the supremes, and then they rule narrowly. Then, once a piece is struck down, Congress just turns around and does another version of it to evade the details of that decision, and the cycle starts over.

There are under 700 people that hit the max last time around, do you seriously think that decision will benefit the grass roots? Sounds to me like it's aimed squarely at giving the oligarchs more influence.

Of course it's the rich are the first who are bit and who have the resources to bring the suit. That's part of why the limits end up off the rich (like Soros) first, while they're still hobbling everybody else.

It isn't just the limits themselves that are an issue. There's all the reporting requirements, publication requirements, time limits, and maze of details that make compliance hard.

It's hard for candidates: They need a substantial political machine right off the bat. Getting dinged for campaign finance violations is costly, may involve jail time, DOES involve court time, and produces publicity that tarnishes the candidate's image and hurts his chances in future elections. This gives the professional politicians, especially incumbents with the machine in place, a massive advantage over any grass-roots upstarts trying to replace them.

And it can bring on reprisals against donors - including carreer-killing or physical retaliation. Who contributed to what political campaigns is public record and searchable online. This is an invitation to people with opposing views to exert social pressure or take revenge. (Within the last couple weeks we saw the CEO of Netscape forced to resign by just such pressure, as a result of the McCain-Feingold reporting of a past political contribution to a "politically-incorrect" campaign.)

It's the exact opposite of a secret ballot, which is secret to prevent such reprisals so the vote can be cast in safety. Why should financial support be any different? Why would publishing the amount and beneficiary of each contributor's political contributions be any less of a bias on the political system than publishing the way each voter voted?

Further, risking a job is far more of a hardship for a little guy living hand-to-mouth than a rich executive with millions in the bank and a golden parachute. So it's another force to suppress grass-roots opinion in favor of those who are independently wealthy or well-off.

+ - Anti-tech protests in San Francisco turn out to be underhanded ploy by union

Submitted by execthis
execthis (537150) writes "In the news over past weeks and months have been stories about protests in San Francisco in which buses for Google have been blocked by protesters. Today it is revealed that a union is behind these protests, which amount to a dirty tactic on their part to attempt to humiliate the City and County of San Francisco government into giving raises to their employees. In other words, they have been faux protests staged by the Service Employees International Union as an underhanded attempt to gain leverage and force the city to give them wage increases. Its interesting to note that there recently were other seemingly faux protests in front of Staples stores, this time by the postal workers (I say seemingly because they did not appear to openly reveal that they were in fact postal workers)."

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