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Comment Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (Score 1) 327

There's nothing wrong with letting the capitalists run the efficiency show, as long as we are agree efficiency itself is not the goal, but a fair and fulfilling life for all people. The market outcome is not the end goal, the price system is just a way to rationalize the use of resources. Social justice and equal opportunity is the task of the state. Fuck trickle down and assorted fallacies. Progressive taxes impossible to dodge, government subsidies for education and health, massive intervention in the labor market, rentier euthanasia via macroeconomics, estate and inheritance taxes - this are the tools of the social progressive, not fudging with the incentive structure of the firm.

There is very much wrong in letting the capitalists run the economy. Until very recently, a large portion of the population (90%+) were required to actively participate in the maintenance of society (manufacture goods, distribute them, provide services). Increasingly these functions can be automated, and they will be. This situation should logically lead to a reduction in the amount of people who need to work, and a reduction in the length of service they need to provide. Capitalism however has the perverse effect of ensuring that a lack of need for workers translates into falling value of those workers. This effect causes power to concentrate at the top of society, and ultimately leads to extreme poverty at the other end. When society only requires active participation of 1% of the population, under capitalism the other 99% starve to death. That's just plain F'ed up. Capitalism worked OK (as in better than everything else), when workers were required to maintain society, this worked acceptably well. Today, it is a dismal failure of an economic policy known as "trickle down". Its time to cut capitalism loose the way the more progressive countries have done by moving to a mix of socialism and capitalism. Long term, capitalism will have to succumb entirely to something else. That something isn't going to be socialism because in many ways socialism is worse. I expect it will be some kind of socially enforced anarchy or something entirely different, that we haven't even glimpsed yet.

As a side note, the only reason companies need to grow is to satisfy the capitalists running things. In fact, companies are only needed in order to take products from the idea stage and get the products to the masses. For this, capitalism works exceptionally well, but it is not the only way to achieve this goal, and as labor is less and less needed, its evils are starting to outweigh its benefits.

Comment Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (Score 4, Insightful) 327

If you're not making money, you're losing money. But only a government can simply tax you for more or worse borrow it and let your kids pay it back.

Put the government in charge of the Sahara desert and in five years it will run out of sand. Any organization tends toward inefficiency. A free and open competitive market tends to put pressure on participants to be efficient.

Governments have no idea how to run a tech (or any) business except to make it late, over budget and under spec. Every decision is made for political rather than economic reasons. The only people who think that's a good idea are fools that thing government is always good, or wolves that want the power.

Which are you?

Inefficient organizations are not the worst things that can happen to society. Far from it in fact. Tyranny and monopoly abuse are by far the greater evils. In the so called land of the free, we have millions of workers being squeezed for every penny in the name of efficiency, so that the tyrants on top can have more and more. Meanwhile, they use their powers to control access to resources that should cost almost nothing so that those in the middle and on the bottom can have less and less even though the availability of resources continues to grow.

The simple fact is that efficiency of markets under capitalism only benefits the already wealthy. It does practically nothing for the middle class, and actively hurts the poor. The phrase a "rising tide lifts all ships" is not true with our broken economic system. What we need is a new economic system that severely limits how far ahead of the curve any individual can get. We used to have such a system, it was called progressive taxation. What we have now is a shambles.

The solution is relatively simple. Wipe out corporations the way they stand now. The socialists got the problem right, just botched the solution. You cant take the power away from one group of greedy scuzzballs, and give it to another group of greedy scuzzballs and expect everything to get better. A better suggestion I have heard is to give ownership of all corporations to the workers who are employed by the company. Each employee gets 1 vote in selecting those that run the company. Limit companies to a maximum number of employees to keep super-conglomerates from swamping individuals with raw numbers. To be sure, some economies of scale would be lost. The wealthy would never permit it if they have any say in the matter. Our current system of government will not allow it to happen because the wealthy have too much power and there is no way to get it back from them.

Our government has been completely and wholly pwned by the wealthy. Unless they are willing to give up the power permanently and in ways that can be enforced, the peoples of the democratic nations of the world may have no alternative than to replace capitalism at the point of a gun.

That is the reason that gun control is so dangerous to the average person. Once you have no ability to do violence, you have very little power to enforce your authority, and authority that cant be enforced isn't real. Remember that the next time you vote to "make our streets safer". Its not us they're making the streets safer for...

Comment Re:qualcomm is right (Score 1) 526

As for "significant power cost", this has long been since resolved by "good" CPU design; and shutting down areas of the CPU that are not in use. Don't need eight CPU's right now? The OS 'can' shut down 2 (or 4).

Its not the power cost of the extra cores that is the single biggest reason not to have them, it is the actual increase in cost of the processor. Increasing die size reduces yield in non linear ways. Doubling the die size can have an exponential increase in the cost of the final product. Most cell phones have relatively small margins. Only a few players can get away with high margin hardware, but even they would balk at adding $40 to the cost of the hardware if the majority of their users would never even know the difference.

As far as the power cost, the optimizations you mentioned are the very reason not to have 8 cores. You get all the power you will neef, fr the immediate future with 4 cores. There simply isn't a big enough improvement in performance with 8 cores for it to be worth the increased cost to manufacture *and* reduced battery life.

Comment Re:qualcomm is right (Score 1) 526

Uhhmmm. Rendering libraries? You know, the ones used by games.

I'm pretty sure no one is playing the latest call of duty on their cell phone, nor would they do so even if they could. In the unlikely event that I am wrong about both of the above, the cell phones just don't have the raw pixel count to require so much raw compute power.

Uhhmmm. Speech recognition? Speech Synthesis?

I seem to remember half way decent speech recognition back in '99, so I doubt that recognition requires that much compute power. Syntheis seems like pretty much the same deal. Just simply not enough value need to be calculated in any given second to require the phenominal compute power that 4 cores provide, much less 8.

You might make an argument for video compression / processing, but the abundance of bandwidth is making this less and less important. The abundance of storage is removing much of the need for good image compression for cameras as well. Although the images are huge (13 Mpixel! or better), there is so much storage available that the phone can store the images uncompressed and compress them at leisure, and it would take a backlog of hundreds of images before the phone would be in danger of running out of storage.

Comment Re:qualcomm is right (Score 1) 526

Ever open Task Manager (in windows)? There are other things going on in every OS besides just the application you are running. Ever run more than one application? Short sided people - are not (still?) not using - or seeing, or bothering to code for multi-core systems.

There are only so many things that need processing in the background. The leap from 1 processor to 2 had huge advantages in that regard: The background tasks no longer truly used resources that the active tasks needed. Even some applications could be paralleled for a significant performance enhancement on their own. Even going from 2 cores to 4 offers some advantage, even in the mobile sector, where some of the eye candy apps need some horsepower behind them, but graphics are your biggest resource hogs when it comes to CPU, and the mobile devices just don't have the pixel count to make any reasonable demand for that much compute power. As mentioned above, additional parallel compute power comes at a significant efficiency cost, and as such is not usually a good idea unless raw compute power is significantly more important that power consumption. This whole thread boils down to Qualcomm understanding their market segment very very well, and you not so much.

Comment Re:qualcomm is right (Score 1) 526

I would think that an eight core processor might make sense for a high end smartphone; you could have four cores with scalable clock speed for high performance computing (gaming, video editing, etc.) and switch to four low-power cores on the fly, which will still multitask very well but will conserve power. If only any smartphone manufacturer would introduce such a beast.

Cost is a far more important factor in smartphones (even the high end) than performance. Paying for 8 cores when you only use 4 is just plain idiotic. You could just get a more power efficient 4 core setup and have done with it. Most of the 4 core systems can quite happily scale power levels up and down with utilization, so using 8 cores to achieve 4 cores with adjustable power consumption is, as stated, idiotic.

Comment Re:qualcomm is right (Score 1) 526

I would think that a highly multithreaded app combined with a highly parallel CPU would actually be more power efficient, as you're doing the same work in less clocks.

Granted, all tasks cannot be highly multithreaded, but that particular street goes both ways.

Then you would think wrong. Efficiency is a tricky measure. It would be efficient for an equal task, but any task that is written to take full advantage of 8 cores is quite likely to be a completely frivolous waste of compute power. As such, how many people are going to be willing to use an app that burns through your entire battery in 20 minutes just because it has nice eye candy. If it is something more worthwhile, then they are almost guaranteed to use a more permanently installed computer (one with permanent power supply) to do the task. It is simply a case of a solution to a problem that does not exist (yet?). Maybe in 10 years there may be a problem for which 20 minute battery life is an acceptable tradeoff, but I doubt it.

Comment Re:Que surprise? (Score 2) 196

What is wrong with social security? It is fully funded for decades and simply upping the cut for contributions with inflation would extend it even further.

Social security is not properly funded. The Social security administration has (by congressional decree) taken a very sizable position in Special US government bonds. There is no Cash in those accounts, just US government iou's. If congress decides to welch on those debts, then social security is bankrupt. These are not small amounts of money. By most estimates the debt is as large as 4 Trillion dollars. With our current "discretionary" budget this would take the U.S. approximately 40 years to repay not including interest due, and not spending any money on any other discretionary expense like infrastructure maintenance, or NASA, etc... This debt is cripplingly high, and the debt maintenance on the bonds alone is high enough to cause a massive budget deficit every year. Congress spent the money over two decades starting in the early 80's, and all thats left are the iou's. Social security is bankrupt in all but name. They made bad loans to the US, and congress wants to welch on those debts.

Comment Re:Eric Holder (Score 1) 616

If everyone disgusted with the system stayed home, the system would *never* change. That's sufficient proof that your method is broken.

That is simply not true. Voting / participating in the democratic process is not the only way to change the system. It is simply one of the many tools those in power have used through the ages to keep those without power from using violence to TAKE power.

Many people today are content to let those with the power do as they please because it doesn't affect their daily lives in easy to identify ways. For the time being few will stand up and be counted because they will effectively stand alone. When enough people see the choices ahead of them, and death at the hands of the state is not the worst option, then things will change. Until then its all just window dressing anyways.

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