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Comment So long and thanks for all the fish (Score 1) 320

We had about six years where Linux wasn't the unsupported red-headed stepchild of the Web. It was nice while it lasted.

Firefox is losing market share, so it's understandable that they want to avoid the following: "We notice you have an unsupported browser. Please download Safari or IE to view this content". That wouldn't really serve anyone's interests.

Unfortunately, this just pushes the problem onto Linux as a whole: "We notice you have an unsupported OS. Please use Mac OS or Windows to legally view this content."

Comment Re:The article writer is a deaf idiot (Score 1) 841

If you turn the samples up until you can hear the noise floor, you can easily hear the difference. Of course, at those levels, a full range signal would launch your speaker cones out of the cabinets. So is that a fair comparison of 16 vs 24?

There are any number of ways to cheat an ABX test to your own satisfaction. If the goal is to delude yourself, you'll probably succeed.

Comment Re:The article writer is a deaf idiot (Score 4, Insightful) 841

Indeed. One of the overlooked but highly important issues with sampling rates is that although you can represent up to Nyquist in a periodically sampled signal, that is the limit for infinite length recordings. For finite-length recordings, it isn't all or nothing, represented perfectly or not at all -- instead the uncertainty (read: representation error) increases as you approach Nyquist.

Too bad Shannon and Nyquist are dead. It seems they've completely misunderstood the math. How embarrassing they passed on before you could correct their mistake. Now they'll never know.

Comment Re:Can we stop using the word "truthiness," please (Score 5, Informative) 841

Truthiness refers to a specific kind of lie-- a lie that sounds true, and that a large segment of people really want to be true. The kind of thing that's close enough to true for AM radio talk show hosts.

And now... I'll get off your damned lawn. Don't forget to take your teeth out before falling asleep.


Submission + - Why Distributing Music As 24-bit/192kHz Downloads Is Pointless (

An anonymous reader writes: A recent post at provides a long and incredibly detailed explanation of why 24-bit/192kHz music downloads — touted as being of 'uncompromised studio quality' — don't make any sense. The post walks us through some of the basics of ear anatomy, sampling rates, and listening tests, finally concluding that lossless formats and a decent pair of headphones will do a lot more for your audio enjoyment than a 24/192 recordings. 'Why push back against 24/192? Because it's a solution to a problem that doesn't exist, a business model based on willful ignorance and scamming people. The more that pseudoscience goes unchecked in the world at large, the harder it is for truth to overcome truthiness... even if this is a small and relatively insignificant example.'

Submission + - Device Could Make Ships 'Invisible' to Waves (

An anonymous reader writes: The weird science of invisibility has entered uncharted waters. By altering the sea floor in just the right way, it should be possible to hide an object floating on the sea from passing waves, a fluid mechanician predicts. The technique might help to protect ships and floating structures from rough seas. And because the scheme works entirely differently from the "cloaks" developed to hide objects from light and other electromagnetic waves, it breaks new ground for research.

Submission + - Proceeds from Vita ad donated to Anonymous (

dotarray writes: German band Atari Teenage Riot was recently featured in the "Never Stop Playing" ad campaign for PlayStation Vita — today founding member Alec Empire has announced that all royalties and other money arising from the ad will be donated to a website supporting hacktivist group Anonymous.

Comment Thanks for all the Fish Wrapper (Score 5, Interesting) 1521

In 1997, right after Chips n' Dips had faded away, to be replaced by the enigmatically named http:///, all of us free software nerds hung on its every story, comment and poll like it was carved on tablet and flung from a burning bush. A year later I had started at hardware maker VA Research and /. was falling down for lack of machinery, so we rummaged through our returns piles and sent Rob and Jeff some 2u servers to help out. That was for me the beginning of some of the most important friendships in my adult life.

Its hard to explain how important Slashdot was to all of us 10 years ago. Indeed, without it it would be hard to imagine HN, Reddit, Digg, Fark or any of a thousand lesser sites. The editorial perspective of Rob and the other editors of /. is what kept people coming back and for a long time that perspective was Rob's, then Rob and Jeff and a bunch of us (some, like Timothy and samzenpus, still around!), but then Jeff left, now Rob. In some way I see this as a passing of an era in free software.

Throughout, while some have left for those greener shores, slashdot abided even while buffeted by the markets and the de/evolving internet news world, and it has remained a default tab in my and many others' browsers.

I didn't mean this post to be about Slashdot though, but about my friend Rob. I'll only say that while the site will be the lessor for you leaving, I firmly believe that computer science will gain my. While this note reads like an epitaph or the last pages of a book, it is really no more than a thank you note from me and many I know to your for your decade+ of work on the site. So...


Comment Why users care... (Score 1) 166 at the top of the first Opus/CELT demo page:

The low latency makes more interactive applications possible. By way of illustration, the total algorithmic delay of an Opus or CELT stream is approximately equivalent to the time it takes sound to travel from you to someone standing five feet away.

Submission + - Blockbuster files for bankruptcy (

Entropy98 writes: It finally happened, Blockbuster video has filed for bankruptcy with nearly $1 Billion of debt.

Worn down by Netflix, Redbox, online downloads/streaming, and others Blockbuster has been forced to declare bankruptcy.

What once dominant business will be next to fail to adapt to the ever changing video delivery industry?

Submission + - Netflix hires actors to pose as its Canada fans (

An anonymous reader writes: Netflix Inc. tried to bring a touch of Hollywood to its Canada debut Wednesday only to wind up apologizing for a botched publicity stunt.

Submission + - Dimensions go "poof" in quantum gravity (

techbeat writes: Forget Flatland, writes New Scientist. Several different quantum gravity theories all predict the same strange behaviour at small scales: fields and particles start to behave as if space is one-dimensional. It's an observation that could bring together several disparate attempts to unite quantum mechanics and general relativity. To explain how dimensions could vanish, Steven Carlip at the University of California, Davis turns to the idea of "quantum foam", in which quantum fluctuations alter the geometry of space-time, rendering it choppy and inhomogeneous at small scales.

Submission + - France Could Be Months From Going Dark on the Web ( 2

mykos writes: According to a report from PCINpact one of the major ISPs confirmed that the first batch of IP-addresses was submitted just a few days ago. This is the final step before alleged file-sharers receive warning letters. The scope of the operation is mind boggling. The copyright holders will start relatively ‘slowly’ with 10,000 IP-addresses a day, but within weeks this number is expected to go up to 150,000 IP-addresses per day according to official reports. The Internet providers will be tasked with identifying the alleged infringers’ names, addresses, emails and phone numbers. If they fail to do so within 8 days they risk a fine of 1,500 euros per day for every unidentified IP-address. To put this into perspective, a United States judge ruled recently that the ISP Time Warner only has to give up 28 IP-addresses a month ( 1 per day) to copyright holders because of the immense workload the identifications would cause.

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