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Comment Re:Who Says they Never Paid for those Nukes... (Score 1) 215

Pardon me but the ONLY rule for criticizing Israel while not getting branded an anti-semite is... not criticizing Israel.

Fixed that for you. And I'm serious - this isn't about actual antisemitism, it's about suppression of criticism by claiming racism.

It's standard fare in politics sadly. If you want immigration laws (even just existing ones on the books) to be enforced, you're racist against Mexicans (an accusation made by people who have never reviewed Mexico's much stricter immigration laws!). If you criticize Israel, you're an anti-Semite. If you're against President Obama's politics or Eric Holder's actions, you're racist against black people. Etc etc. I wonder what such people would say if we ever developed a real problem with millions of white Canadians illegally entering the country, but I digress.

It's a cheap way to shut down all reasonable discussion and put the other person immediately on the defensive, trying to disprove a negative. It comes from people who don't want reason and logic to enter into the discussion because these are threats to their position, a position based on self-interest and not based on what makes good policy or which view is closest to the truth.

A side-effect I consider intentional is that the obsession with group identity is a direct assault on the concept of individuality. Real individuality is a strong threat to the main method of politics today, which is to divide people into multiple groups and gain power by promising to protect each from the others.

Comment Ummm... (Score 5, Insightful) 786

Just for the sake of perspective, 'big government' didn't "just put a man on the moon", it was an iterative process going all the way back to the experience of the Nazi war criminals we hastily whitewashed, up through a variety of incremental improvements and test designs (along with various accidents, some fatal), until we get to the Apollo missions that everyone actually remembers (and some of those had Issues as well).

Apollo 1 didn't, exactly go so hot(well, it actually went pretty hot indeed), and at least 5 others were killed in jet-based training.

Gemini 8 almost went rather badly, Apollo 12 was struck by lighting, Apollo 13's multiple issues are well known, Apollo 15 had parachute problems.

An assortment of workers and techs have also snuffed it in ground based accidents while working on space launch hardware.

This is not to say that the healthcare.gov rolllout was a success (it wasn't); but website launch failures are pretty boring as failure goes, everyone from small-business intranets up to major web companies seems to fuck them up on occasion. The bigger question will be time-to-fix. To use TFA's own analogy, you could have written "Why can't big government launch a rocket?" when Apollo 1 rather embarassingly caught fire on the ground, reducing the entire crew to charred corpses, because it had been filled with pure oxygen and improperly passivated. As we now know, they can, just not on the first try.

Comment Re:Since when is money laundering a "loophole"? (Score 1) 406

Money laudering in US politics hit the big time during the Watergate scandal. Details are never quite clear, but basically CREEP -- the Committee to Re-electe the President -- funnelled a then extraordinary $60 million or so through mexico to help fund Nixon's relelection campaign. Some of this money was used to finance dirity election tricks, rat-fucking, a famous letter which caused a governors campaign to implode I believe, and of course the watergate bugging itself and related operations.

Nixon won the 1972 election campaign.

Comment Hard to believe C++ is considered low level! (Score 1) 191

There will always be at least one 'bare metal' language around because we have to be able to write for the hardware, whether it be C/C++ or something else, and every programmer should be familiar with its basics at least.

Man, I never thought I'd see "bare metal language" and C++ in the same sentence.


        BITS 16

start:
        mov ax, 07C0h ; Set up 4K stack space after this bootloader
        add ax, 288 ; (4096 + 512) / 16 bytes per paragraph
        mov ss, ax
        mov sp, 4096

        mov ax, 07C0h ; Set data segment to where we're loaded
        mov ds, ax

        mov si, text_string ; Put string position into SI
        call print_string ; Call our string-printing routine

        jmp $ ; Jump here - infinite loop!

        text_string db 'This is my cool new OS!', 0

print_string: ; Routine: output string in SI to screen
        mov ah, 0Eh ; int 10h 'print char' function

.repeat:
        lodsb ; Get character from string
        cmp al, 0
        je .done ; If char is zero, end of string
        int 10h ; Otherwise, print it
        jmp .repeat

.done:
        ret

        times 510-($-$$) db 0 ; Pad remainder of boot sector with 0s
        dw 0xAA55 ; The standard PC boot signature

Comment Re:ATI drivers (Score 1) 212

Even 1024x768 is 786432 pixels. 8bpp, 30FPS is 22.5MB/s, 16bpp obiously twice that. I suppose, on consideration, that 50MB/s (purely of framebuffer transferring) would probably be an acceptable load for a nominally 133MB/s basic-desktop PCI bus. A shared, graphics only, one would be better; but at that level of fiddling, you might as well just dump the 2d features on the 3d board (why, hello there, exactly what in fact happened, we were just talking about you...)

Comment Re:ATI drivers (Score 1) 212

Interesting. I'm surprised that they managed to pull that off over a PCI bus. Especially before people got serious about security-through-randomization of the address space layout, it's always been conceptually fairly simple for anything with memory access to dump stuff into the framebuffer (they seem to have bitrotted; but there used to be some amusing examples designed for use against classic macs over firewire, since that was both external and had DMA, dumping flying toasters directly on top of your victim's desktop, silently grabbing frames out of their framebuffer, that sort of thing); but PCI is shared, and just not all that fast (compared to the demands of uncompressed video output of any nontrivial resolution and bit depth.

Out of curiosity, did the PowerVR cards manage to behave well in that regard, or could you induce situations where firing up the 3d cratered throughput on any IDE/ethernet/whatever peripherals on the same PCI bus, or where frames dropped all over the place because your IDE controller decided that something needed to Get Written NOW, and grabbed mastery of the bus at the wrong moment?

Comment Re:Another one that has turned evil (Score 1) 258

Amazon doesn't actually deliver anything

They do - "Amazon Local Delivery" is their own thing. And that program is going - it started with just Seattle, and it was already 10 cities last year.

Also, I think that popularity of Amazon was in large part the reason why UPS and FedEx got their shit together, at last.

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