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Comment Re:Why? (Score 1) 106

Making the install size of the system smaller enables new applications and ways of using the system. At the moment an operating system is a giant monolithic install tied to a signle machine. I would prefer a single install shared across all of my devices. To make this work the OS would need to be synchronised / reconciled across a network connection on demand. Like a cloud OS but not running on public hardware - just migrating between devices that I own. As size as a direct impact on performance (time to start up, to reconcile) the install size could never be small enough.

There are smaller devices than you acknowledge. Memory and storage are the dominant costs in those devices and reducing the need for both enables cheaper classes of device. The Pi is an interesting machine for $25, but what happens when a desktop-capable machine costs $5, or $1?

Lastly, flash is nice but it still is not as fast as DRAM. Having an entire OS install cached in memory has advantages for performance.

Comment Re:Surprising number (Score 1) 256

You keep talking about a large asteroid that is definitely on a collision course with earth. This is an error. There have been large asteroids that been on collision courses before. There may be more, but it is not certain. Because it is not 100% probable that an unknown large asteroid is currently on a collision course with earth none of your argument is valid, and your arguments about increasing probabilities are incorrect.

Your argument would be valid (but pointless) if you said: "if there is at least one more asteroid on a collision course with earth then the probabillty of impact on a particular day increases with each day it does not strike". Of all the asteroids that strike earth of a given size, one of them is the last.

Comment Re:deep shit (Score 1) 162

When people write a paper for publication they have to differentiate their approach from previous approaches. You seem to have latched onto deep as an imprecise description of the number of layers. It is not. It is an accurate distinction in comparison to previous approaches. Because previous approaches were limited to about (not exactly) two layers it makes the definition of the label a little fuzzy, but the partition into shallow / deep approaches is crisp.

Comment Re:Sources of improvements? (Score 2, Insightful) 162

The problem comes when you try larger inputs. Regardless of constant factors if you are playing with O(2^n) algorithms then n will not increase above about 30. If you start looking at really weird stuff (optimal circuit design and layout) then the core algorithms are O(2^2^n) and then if you are really lucky n will reach 5. Back in the 80s it only went to 4, buts thats Moore's law for you.

Comment Re:"Troll"? EXCUSE ME? (Score 1) 272

When you refer to this hypothetical steambox as open, what makes you assume that it will be? If it is custom hardware there is no reason to assume that it will be any more open than competing consoles. Linux on the inside doesn't guarantee root access, and if they drop bios for a signed bootloader it would be difficult to get into. The DRM in the system will be derived from steam, so I would assume that online activation will be mandatory. The piracy rate could actually be lower than the currently existing consoles as none of them enforce mandatory online activiation. It could also completely kill the second-hand game market for this device, so the economics of the market would quite new. As you wrote ealier, it would be up to Value to prove that gamers would buy into this market, although I assume the studios would love it.

Comment Re:Why cardboard? (Score 1) 347

We have motorised desks at work. There is a pair of push switches on the front and they raise and lower maybe 1.5m (3-4ft). As long as you have fairly long cables on everything these make the transition very easy. It does make quite a difference as you can stretch your legs for an hour or two and then switch back. Oddly enough I've ended up in a weird slouched position with the chair reclined and the desk close to the floor, meh, the broken ergonomics are probably more to do with me than the office.

Comment Re:Be as nasty as you want to the Baby Boomers... (Score 0) 480

No. You are taking an extremely superficial view of the problems and claiming that we know the solutions. If you take your points together then they claim that we can build a viable closed eco-system. The experiments that have been conducted so far show that we cannot. We still do not know how to engineer a closed-loop that can survive for more than a few months and every experiment so far has had to shut down or risk killing the participants.

Sure we know how to build bunkers - do we know how to do large scale construction in a hard vacuum? Can we build a fission reactor large enough for a small city, launch it by rocket and land it on another orbital body? Or is it so easy to assemble it over there using our well-developed space construction skills?

It must be some utopian blend of crack in that pipe that you are smoking. Nobody is claiming that we can't learn how to do these things given the will and the experience, but to claim that they are already solved problems is just ridiculous.

Comment Re:Revert back to what worked (Score 1) 432

Indeed, just because binary was good enough for the first few millenia of civilisation did not stop the invention of octal in the 19th century. It did not stop the widespread adoption of decimal across the world in the '60s (apart from america), and hexadecimal is currently being established as an international standard. Who knows? By the mid-century we may have progressed as far as a base-25 system.

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