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Comment Re: Halted (Score 2) 330

The comment about Halted needs a little context. Halted (still in business) is an Electronics part store in the Silicon Valley (Sunnyvale off of Central Expressway & Lawerence for those who care..) I is the place you go when you need the odd-ball capacitor or resistor for your electronics project. Lots of good quality junk there.


Submission + - World's First LInux Powered Rifle Announced (

stevew writes: In conjunction with the nice article about how guns should be self-aware comes the announcement of the Worlds First Linux Powered Rifle. Should just be a small up-grade to add Google Maps to supply the desired functionality!

Comment Re:A clear example of how lobbying hurts everyone (Score 1) 375

Some people can't seem to see the comparison between a state EPA making stupid decisions with poor science, or ignoring science and economics or even covering it up and perhaps the Federal EPA doing the same thing! THAT is the moral of the story.

Most decisions by bureaucrats SUCK!

To paraphrase Ronald Reagan - the most feared statement in the English language should be "I'm from the government and I'm here to help!"

The MTBE story is about suppression of science that doesn't fit your political agenda. It's about screwing the public because of a political agenda.

Also - the claims that Ethanol can harm engines (a similarity with MTBE) isn't something that's made up. It is why the manufacturers are saying it will void your warranties! Then there is the little bit about it is carbon neutral. BS! It takes more more energy to make it than you recover by using it in your car engine. If you don't accept those facts, then you have a promising career ahead of you as a bureaucrat!

Comment Re:A clear example of how lobbying hurts everyone (Score 5, Informative) 375

Yep - this is right up there with the MTBE debacle in CA about 10 years ago.

The Cal EPA (yes California has it's own set of idiot Environmental Regulators) decided that we needed Oxygenation in our fuel mix. The Refiners had this great additive that they had NO market for called MTBE that they claimed would do the job. A report was done describing the effect of use of the additive. CalEPA literally removed dozens of pages of negative results from the report documenting that the additive would corrode the neoprene used in Gas Hoses in most vehicles! Did I mention that MTBE is a major carcinogen!

So the state merrily adopts the stuff!

Well, sure enough, CHP starts to have a huge number of car fires in their patrol vehicles as proof that the original report (the suppressed part) was correct! The bureaucrats can't sweep that CHP fleet numbers under the rug.

Then the stuff starts showing up in drinking water all over the place!

The bureaucrats are running around in circles (think circular firing squads) pointing fingers at each other. Turns out that once MTBE enters the Ecosystem, it doesn't leave. The bureaucrats (without any scientific basis) start banning motorboats on reservoirs arguing that they must be all leaking the stuff. Nope - rain! The stuff is in the air, and the rain is bringing it down into the entire water shed.

Finally tally - 20K drinking wells are polluted with the stuff.

Next - it turns out that MTBE doesn't really do the original job it was claimed to!

Well - the public is incensed! How could this all happen! This is about the time the rest of the original report shows up documenting the fact that MTBE destroys gas engines. Everything from lawn mowers to cars had problems with the stuff. A new form of gas hosing was invented to contain this mess.

The public outrage grows and eventually the governor decrees that the stuff will not be allowed into CA gas.

Final insult. The biggest manufacturer of the stuff sues CA for 1 billion dollars because of voided contract with them - and wins!

Excuse me - I've seen this movie before and know how it ends.


Comment Re:Anybody using Ada? (Score 2) 165

This very argument happens in chip design where we have two languages VHDL & Verilog. VHDL is very much done in the Ada Model and is a direct descendant where Verilog comes by way of C. There was a language shoot out back in the late 90s when this argument had more life with similar results. Verilog lets you get things done in about half the amount of text and about twice as fast as writing the equivalent in VHDL. Verilog gives you every chance to mess-up, i.e. it doesn't hold your hand. VHDL smothers you with compile-time warnings, Interface checking, etc.

Both have a large number of followers now-a-days. VHDL is strong in the FPGA community (pushed by Xilinx) and in Europe. Verilog has more adherents in the US & Asia.

What it comes down to in my line of work is time - Verilog + Linter is faster than VHDL in getting the job done. (IMHO!)

Comment Re:Because the 35 year olds have gained wisdom (Score 5, Insightful) 441

Some other points not brought up - since the guy is in India, there are some specific Indian Culture issues working here too. The big one that has been pointed out to me by Indian folks I've worked with is that Mom & Dad expect their kids to be MANAGERS within a couple of years of graduating or the kids are considered failures! So even FINDING someone in India with 15 years of relevant experience is HARD. They DO exist, but more than likely, they came over to the US then went back home!

Finally - having just gone through a project with 3 oldsters pushing 50+ & three young guns just out of school (one a PHD & the other two youngsters Masters degree holders) I can tell you with certainty that the company took over a year recovering from the mistakes made by the newbies.

BS to the whole thing. I'm 56 and still a working technologist.

Comment Re:shame (Score 2, Insightful) 268

How is a company defending a legitimate copyright imply anything about the quality of their machines.

We are all about enforcement of the GPL to protect our rights in the free software movement, yet when a company uses EXACTLY the same laws that give us the freedom to choose alternate software everyone gets up-in-arms about the big bad business pursuing a claim against someone who has essentially stolen their copyrighted work and is using it to make money?

Comment Re:SDR (Score 2) 51

Let me be a little more specific for you - ghpsdr3-alex is what you are looking for. This is really two apps. The first is the processing software that hooks up to very simple hardware the implements the Software Defined Radio, all the signal processing, etc. Then there This is usually run on a PC. This software is capable of registering itself so it can be found through the internet. Then there is a graphical piece of software with clients for PC, Android and Iphone that let you see the Pan Adapter display of a chunk of spectrum and play back the audio for whatever you've tuned in. This is the control head for the processing software (Think client-server).

Comment Re:Looks like the AG actually read the law (Score 2, Informative) 817

Dude - get your Damn story straight! The Bush DOJ DID prosecute them. Then the new appointee from the Obama administration canceled the prosecution, i.e. interfered with the process. Several career prosecutors quite over the affair. I LOVE how you guys try to rewrite history.

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