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Comment Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 175

I Welched on my bet and it led to a Mexican standoff with another guy who was an Indian giver. In the end we settled it with a game of Russian Roulette. It was chaos, a real Polish Parliament. In the end, the gun didn't go off and we all felt like we were Gypped and the Canadians were sorry about the whole mess even though they were not involved at all.

That whole post was Double-Dutch to me. As confusing as a game of Chinese whispers.

That's because the game being played by the big boys is like Chicago style politics. They give you the illusion of choice but in reality, it is a Kansas City Shuffle. You work hard, you work the system, you work the work, if you catch my drift, and you feel like you have a leg up on everyone else. You hear everyone laughing, you laugh along making fun of the other suckers, but the reality is that you are the one that was getting conned all this time.

Comment Re:Ok.... (Score 1) 142

I know you're just saying that to screw with pedants... but I hate you anyway.

If you're going to talk about pedantry, I don't understand the experiment to begin with. My concern is probably naive, but consider the fact that over a hundred detectable earthquakes occur every days, and thousands more occur that are too mild to detect.

Aren't earthquakes introducing massive errors in this experiement - considering how long it has been running?
If this concern is valid, they should have used a good vibration isolation mechanism, and I'm not sure if they did.

Comment Re:Reward the artist (Score 1) 301

Wowser, do these same ideas also apply to programmers??
I can easily make the connection between programmers and your statement:
"if someone is doing good work in a creative field, they should at least have some level of trust in the fact that they can circumvent the established system with its attendant bloodsucking leeches, and still feel like they are getting the same level of respect, exposure, and money. In fact, it should be a lot more."

Of course it does - and in fact this is happening all the time. What makes you think that certain dotcoms or even mobile phone apps are worth the hundreds of millions of dollars as compared to certain other apps that are worth a thousand times less?

I see no reason why a Monet should be worth a hundred mill, just as I fail to see why Instagram should be worth a billion. But I don't begrudge them whatever they are earning or are considered to be worth. If we are going to support "free enterprise" in the truest sense, we should support the big guys as much as the small guys. In fact, the big guys arguably need more help because they have a lot more to lose.

And most importantly, it sends a signal to all the others that this system works even if you get really big or semi-big. Otherwise, you are simply destroying the incentive, the goal post, that people strive for.

Comment Re:Reward the artist (Score 5, Insightful) 301

Where is the EFF is fighting all of this??

They are busy protecting our civil liberties and trying to prevent our country from turning into a police state. Some millionaires making tens of millions instead of hundreds of millions of dollars because of the greed of their corporate owners may not be "just" but I'm betting it's not a real high priority for the EFF.

And there's a huge problem with precisely this type of thinking. Bands like Radiohead are trying extremely hard to "do the right thing" - i.e. what they consider fair to themselves and to their audience. We, the listeners, should be trying to prop them up instead of calling sour grapes on them because they happen to be millionaires or whatever. If you like Joe No-Name band that has sold all of 50 albums so far, good for you.

Do remember though that your (and my) media consumption largely consists of authors, bands, movie directors, and artists that have attained some level of commercial success. It is really sad to see initiatives like Radiohead's honor based payment scheme - not be wildly successful. I would actually have loved to see Radiohead make 10 times the money from this experiment than they would have from the record label. Just imagine the message that would have sent - not just to Radiohead but to every other artist and even to us.

Honestly, if Radiohead makes a hundred mil instead of ten mil, I wish him all the very best. Thom Yorke's talent, consistency, and hard work deserves all the money he can get. The concept of money is completely nonsensical when it comes to creative works anyway. Heck, even manufactured products nowadays cost what they cost because of factors that have little to do with their manufacturing cost.

But at the very least, if someone is doing good work in a creative field, they should at least have some level of trust in the fact that they can circumvent the established system with its attendant bloodsucking leeches, and still feel like they are getting the same level of respect, exposure, and money. In fact, it should be a lot more.

Comment Re:You're testing wrong (Score 2) 177

Yeah, I was going to say, 40ms seems a bit out there. If you consider a touch typist typing 100WPM, that's about 8.3 characters/second, or about 120ms / character. You may think 40ms is fast enough to accommodate that, but not really. Typing is bursty by nature, and so many of those consecutive keystrokes will come close together. If you scan too slowly, you might see two keys "become active" on the same scan, and end up reordering them. At 40ms, that seems entirely likely for a touch typist at 100WPM.

10ms seems far more reasonable.

Comment Re:You're testing wrong (Score 2) 177

So, GGGP was less wrong than stated, but for the wrong reasons. Huzzah! That is a rather strange defense. "I thought I was supposed to go south, when actually I was supposed to go north. But, I misread the roadsign and got on a road that goes northeast, so I ended up not too far from my destination. See? I'm not a bad navigator!"

Anyway, in the interest of actual analysis:

Let's go at the low end: 10kHz. And let's pick a beefier keycode, say "R CTRL", that has a 2 byte scan code. No, we're not going to benchmark the hilarious pause key. Get real. The vast majority of the scan codes are 1 byte anyway.

The time to send a key down event should be 2 bytes * 11 clocks, or 22 clock periods at 10kHz. That's 2.2 milliseconds. The time to send a key-up event should be 3 bytes * 11 clocks => 3.3 milliseconds.

Both of those seem pretty fast. The OS itself, though, and whatever layers there are between the PS/2 connector and the OS, will add their own latency. But in a race between a PS/2 keyboard and a USB mouse? I think they're going to both be well under 50ms in any case. 50ms is 20Hz, which is "Intellivision games from the late 70s" speed.

Comment Re:Clarification (Score 1) 211

I think it's probably fine to store non-empty cells as objects, as long as you use something like the Flyweight pattern to avoid carrying too much baggage in each cell. It makes for a fine user interface, I'm sure.

To really get good recalc performance, though, you really need to drag the cell dependence graph out of the grid and treat it like an actual program. Once you do that, you could actually JIT the computation represented by all those cells. If you're really walking the object forest for every recalc, you'll never speed up.

Comment Re:Ultrabook II? (Score 5, Interesting) 229

Remember when Intel took the MacBook air design and turned it into the Ultrabook reference design for its Wintel PC OEMs? Why would Apple not want that to happen again, only faster?

I disagree. Copying a form factor is not really copying design. That's a bit like saying that every hatchback car today is a copy of the original Japanese hatchbacks or whoever first produced the design. While it is true at one level, it is too simplistic a statement to make.

Anyway - I think the biggest challenge for Intel is not its process technology (process shrinks are going to get a lot harder in every iteration, but that holds true for everyone - including Intel and probably more so for TSMC, Samsung, and others). It is actually not even an x86 vs ARM architecture thing - ARM architecture superiority has pretty much been debunked since Medfield's release.

The biggest challenge for Intel, IMHO, is that it is simply not used to (and not geared for) SOCs. Intel has always designed and manufactured discrete chips whereas the entire mobile industry prefers, nay wants, highly integrated SOCs. This is the one aspect where Qualcomm kicks everyone's butt. To put it another way, Intel's fight is not with ARM or TSMC or AMD. Intel's fight today is with Qualcomm. Intel *needs* to get the same level of integration in its SOCs as Qualcomm - otherwise no one will want a bunch of discrete chips from Intel even if Intel shouts itself hoarse about how much better its chips are. And this goes for Apple as well. If Intel can give Apple an SOC that integrates the CPU, GPU, modems and other chips (I'm actually not an expert here but I would say things like DAC, GPS, etc. - anything that is not MEMS), I have a feeling that Apple will find it very hard to say "no".

I don't mean to sound grand but I honestly feel that the future of semiconductors will be highly integrated one-chip SOC based solutions that are "cheap as chips".

Comment Not too surprising (Score 5, Interesting) 164

Someone else (who I think I saw here on Slashdot the last time Voyager was mentioned) had a great analogy for what we're likely seeing. I can't take credit for this at all, but I think it makes a lot of sense.

Suppose we're a small probe, making our way off an island, down the beach, and into the ocean. All we have is a wind-speed detector, and a water detector. As we near the water, waves start lapping over us. When they do, our wind-speed detector says "no wind", and our water detector says "we're wet." Have we entered the ocean yet? The answer is "not quite, but we're really darn close."

It doesn't seem surprising to me at all that the boundary neither perfectly uniform, nor stationary in time. I think we'll be in this transition band for a while.

Comment Re:The same (Score 1) 184

+1

Didn't know about Workday. Interesting stuff.

It is also worth noting that Salesforce bought Heroku, which was turning out to be a very viable platform in itself.
My bet is on Salesforce extending itself to cover finance and supply chain as well.

It would be an interesting twist in the long running Benioff vs Ellison drama.

Comment Re:The same (Score 1) 184

So who does Salesforce outsource to?
At some point there has to be servers in racks, it can't be cloud all the way down.

IT today is about configuration management, deployment and managing virtual and real infrastructure, scripting automation etc. You just described my day.

Oh, absolutely. I was only referring to IT departments in large and medium sized companies.

To put it another way, I was trying to say that these corporate IT departments will start looking more and more like the IT departments in dotcoms.

Comment Re:The same (Score 1) 184

No movement to outsource the management of the machines to outside cloud services? That may or may not happen where you are, but there's a lot of it going on, and it invalidates much of your list.

Your statement is a tad Naive. Do you truly think that the majority of services are going to the cloud? Only an idiot would trust the cloud with their corporate crown jewels. My opinion is that most companies will end up with a mix of services. But... Hey... What's new?

Where I work we are building our own internal cloud services, not outsourcing. Part of that may have to do with the fact that we are a large Biotech company and have various regulations that we have to comply with. Most cloud services, in my opinion, are being used by small to mid-size companies who do not have the economies of scale to run an IT department. Most large companies will use some cloud services but it's highly unlikely that they will trust cloud services with their crown jewels.

The point is that there will be a mixture of services that will need to be supported by IT....

I used to think so too, but don't any more. Look at Salesforce.com. If most of Fortune 500 companies are willing to trust their front-end business - i.e. sales - i.e. the stuff that brings in money and runs the rest of the company - to Salesforce.com, I'm not sure why they would have an issue with other data that is piddly in comparison.

The *real* reason why the entire IT backend has not gone the cloud way is simply that other cloud based providers have not been able to create a platform like Salesforce. A platform that is customizable, extensible, scalable, can give good performance, has good security in place, has ready-made and relevant tools, has a good developer base. And I'm talking about corporate functions like HR, finance, payroll, supply chain, manufacturing, internal communication, marketing, etc.

I know it is a buzzword but I see PaaS as the future. Generic platforms like Azure can be made to work, yes, but the killer platforms are ones that are focused on solving specific problems. Once this starts happening, and it will, IT as you know it, will no longer exist.

Corporate IT will become more like IT in web shops - it will be about configuration management, deployment, managing virtual infrastructure, scripting and automation, monitoring, etc. And it will be about development and scripting.

Just my thoughts though. I could be wrong.

Comment Re:Blackberry Enterprise (Score 1) 125

Blackberry Enterprise is one of those products that I really just have to scratch my head at. It has always seemed to me that encouraging users to treat as secure something which is easily lost, stolen, or damaged is a fundamentally flawed concept for a business model. Sure, there are users out there who have a genuine need for such a concept, but the problem that really needs to be addressed is user understanding of data security practices, not giving them technology that encourages continuing bad practices in ignorance.

Honestly, I've felt for a long time that Blackberry should have done a better job with their enterprise dominance - instead of doing this half assed job of trying to appeal to every market segment. A few years ago, almost all company issued phones were blackberries. Imagine if blackberry had focused on letting you do more with your blackberry - like teleconferencing, video conferencing, virtual workspaces, screensharing, collaboration etc. They had the software, the network, the hardware presence. Their competitors should always have been Cisco, Avaya, WebEx, Netmeeting, Sharepoint, gtalk, heck even Google hangout - *not* Apple and Samsung.

I see the same story with Intel and Microsoft. The amount of hubris these companies have shown - - just beggars the imagination. I mean, we're talking about common sense stuff, not some fancy "blue sky strategy" or whatever. I can understand that big behemoths like these can get blind-sided by other innovative products - stuff like the iPhone - but these companies have literally let it slide for not just a year or a couple of years, but for 5, 6, 7 years. It is ridiculous.

What is even more ridiculous is that the moment these guys come up with a big successful product, they stop innovating. It is all incremental feature creep from there on. I mean, look at even companies that are supposedly engineering driven as opposed to management driven. Look at yahoo messenger. They've been around for donkey's years, nailed chat, supported offline messages years ago when gtalk still doesn't, but just stopped innovating besides adding some silly emoticon crapware. I haven't used it in years, but I'm pretty sure that they still don't do video chat properly, especially video group chat. /rant

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