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Comment Re:Culture-product (Score 0) 102

I wish I could agree with that, but I can't. I'm a bit lazy so I'll just use an article I read a looon-long time ago. What I think is pretty much summarized in the following two sentences:

"[The term] has also, for years, been sort of the de facto label for an entire subculture of idealistic artists and music fans who place a lot of stock in the idea of making music for yourself or your friends, rather than for profit or popularity,"

"indie is now nothing more than a branding tool: a highly commercial and money-driven movement, more concerned with marketing a particular image instead of culture with a truly independent nature and passion for its art."
(source: http://articles.cnn.com/2006-09-19/entertainment/indie.overview).

Want examples? Just check out recent Ytube "indie" stars like Gotye. Ar they really making music for themselves and their friends? Not really...

Comment Re:More Linux fragmentation... (Score 1) 194

Fragmentation is not a bad thing. Think of it as natural selection in the open source software world. This is the mutation that may result in a new or different product.

My first reaction to the parent post was identical: diversity must be good. However, thinking about your evolution analogy I realized: if you really want to wait for (tens of) thousands of years for a piece of software to evolve from "ape" to "human", than simply waiting for the the natural selection to happen is the right thing to and eventually it will bring us brilliant software. However, this approach also fragments the community and diverts efforts from forward-thinking innovation to saving some dying technologies. There is nothing wrong with supporting projects that choose to stick to the good old ways -- by the end only the fittest will survive anyway (and that's called conservativism). But let's be honest, by building on Gnome 2, MATE is investing effort in taking steps backwards. Now I'm not saying that what they do is worthless (in fact I hate the guts of Gnome 3 and Unity), but I would still argue that just because a considerable part of the community doesn't like the new direction, development effort should not be invested into paving a road that is a dead end.

That's why on a second thought, I think it might be better for the community that the effort goes into e.g. Cinnamon, or why not a Unity fork.

One more thing: the GNU Linux ecosystem's great diversity is often mentioned as a great advantage. What leads to this diversity is the very thing we are talking about, fragmentation. A high level of fragmentation results in a bazillion choices and greater choice is for the greater good, most would think. However, psychology research suggests that choice overload can in fact be highly detrimental:

"The more options there are, the easier it is to regret anything at all that is disappointing about the option that you chose." (Barry Schwartz)

If you fancy taking a dive into this topic check out Schwartz's TED talk (http://www.ted.com/speakers/barry_schwartz.html) or his book "The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less".

Comment Re:Culture-product (Score 0) 102

As soon as a band becomes really reputable it inherently looses its "indie" nature. Unless you have an (ehmm) modern view what constitutes as "indie" the your definition has nothing to do with "independent" anymore.

I'd say a really reputable "indie" band is just as much of a culture product targeted at the new hipsters generation (or whatever you call it) as Elvis was at his time.

Comment in the corporate world it might stand out! (Score 1) 349

Considering how strongly the corporate world is tied to the M$ ecosystem - OS, office/productivity suite, (web) application development platform, database etc. - I wouldn't be so sure that the Nokia WP 7.x-s have to stand out very much in terms of features & innovation in order to grab the attention and maybe even the $-s of the corporate world. I wouldn't be surprised if the unarguably good reputation of Nokia combined with a strong integration into the M$ ecosystem would suddenly make these phones serious competitors in the business segment.

I'm not familiar how well does the WP7.5 integrates into the M$ ecosystem, but if it's not as good as it gets, it will soon be.

Comment Re:quadrillion? (Score 1) 179

Anyone here who find that 'quadrillion' is more descriptive than peta? (or 1e15, for that matter?).

Firstly, while for some quadrillion might sound more descriptive, in fact it's simply confusing. In some parts of the world it means 10^24 while in others 10^15: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/quadrillion

Secondly and most importantly, "peta-" is an SI prefix so it's inherently univocal: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SI_prefix#List_of_SI_prefixes

Comment how about security risks? (Score 1) 174

The first software bug that causes hell to break loose in people's apartments will cause quite a bit of headache, but a virus targeting home automation will surely be the real thing. I can imagine funny ones that keep flushing the toilet all night long, but also nasty ones that kill your pets by turning the apartment into a sauna while you're at work or knock you down with the garage door...

I hope the Android Market will be at least a bit more secure by the time the Android Home Automation Heaven arrives!

Comment Re:Collateral success vs indication of support nee (Score 1) 494

I have seen the same pattern: also university lab, positive responsiveness from both Dell and HP, their technicians were on-site in max 24h.

At the same time, Apple required the the faulty iMac to be brought to an authorized service where it took them about 2 weeks to figure out something they were actually told about by the technician who dropped of the iMac - he had ran a memtest. To top it off, they also messed up the OS while replacing the memory module.

Comment Re:Integrated graphics in the CPU? (Score 1) 254

But for a desktop PC, isn't this a disadvantage? If you're using a proper graphics card, couldn't that space in the CPU be used for better things than a redundant graphics circuit?

The simple answer is: no!

Think about OpenCL and in general stream computing - which I believe is a the future of computing through a slow convergence of multicore and manycore. Having a more tightly coupled CPU and GPU (i.e. no PCI express bottleneck) would have the huge advantage of being able to do more streaming tasks on the GPU while not having to worry that communication will kill the performance.

There are already quite many GPU accelerated applications in various HPC research and industrial applications as well as desktop applications (just a few examples: Adobe CS5, OS X Snow Leopard, Badaboom media converter,...)

Comment Re:Converting that article from English to Chinese (Score 1) 142

I think this benchmark puts the bar a bit too high. First of all, a translator is not designed to produce invertible translations. Moreover, as the goal is to produce an understandable translation of a human-written text, the artifacts introduced by the machine-created translation are most probably magnified quite a bit with the second round of translation. Still, it's interesting to see that the Google algorithms actually do an OK job even in such an artificial benchmark.

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