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Comment Re:solid state cache for a hard drive? (Score 1) 109

I have a Drobo with 256 gB of flash. The array has stopped crashing my PC since adding the SSD cache - the timeouts came before the disk spin-ups for the Windows network file system. Copying files to the array happens at 80% of the gigabit ethernet bus speed, now.

You say it doesn't make too much difference, but you clearly haven't played with it for a little while. It's not a miracle, but it is quite a difference.

Comment Re:Rubber-hose cryptanalysis (Score 1) 520

Store some very important nonce, or part of the decryption key, in volatile, battery-backed (capacitor-backed?) memory. If the password is not entered, the charging circuit will not activate, and it is indeed connected to the erase line on the RAM. Thus, if someone tries to bypass the charging limiter, they zeroize the key store. Use other standard anti-tampering mechanisms to prevent chip-shaving and all the other physical attacks secure crypto-processors have been using for decades.

But that's how you'd implement a self-destruct timer.

Comment Re:Already exists (Score 1) 82

Dialed to maximum yield and using the smaller of the two recoilless rifles, the maximum range of the weapon was inside the minimum safe range for the nuke. You were encouraged to trigger it remotely, from next to a bunker (that you could dive into quickly, and planned on abandoning as soon as the shockwave had passed twice), or on the back of a Jeep for some serious shoot-n-scoot action.

Comment Re:REALLY? (Score 1) 42

I should point out that this is the prototype for a tracks-and-arms machine intended for ongoing Fukushima clean-up. We can't really ask what they did in Chernobyl - they just sent in unprotected conscripts to clean up - even replace the soviet flag when the radiation bleached it - after which they were either euthanized or tranquilized while the radiation poisoning ran its course. (Though, in the circumstances, it's hard to tell the difference, there) The lucky survived a while without cancer.

These days, though, we have tungsten, boron nitride, and leaded glass. And now we have something else to carry it for us. Which is good, because if this lights a candle under Cyberdyne's butt, they're likely to actually ship product - someone's likely to ship product - before we next need something like this.

Comment Re: Avatar? Seriously? (Score 4, Informative) 42

As the designer notes in an earlier interview, earlier models had wider hips and a different torso shape, with a more bio-inspired, "automotive" design. Range of motion questions, as well as seasickness caused by the robot's swaying gait, caused them to remodel the joints until the machine's proportions bear an uncanny resemblance to Cameron's AMP suits. The designer of the real one praises Cameron and his team's vision and engineering acumen. While it wasn't designed by looking at Avatar's mecha, it represents a case where there was some convergent evolution during the design process.

Comment Re:Not everyone is the same (Score 2) 297


Nonplussed has two meanings. I tripped on this last week.

nonplussed |nänplst| (also nonplused)
1 (of a person) surprised and confused so much that they are unsure how to react: he would be completely nonplussed and embarrassed at the idea.
2 North American informal (of a person) not disconcerted; unperturbed.

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