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Comment Re:non-news is non-news (Score 1) 158

Various chips have various speeds too; specifically newer chips tend to have both more capacity, better speed and higher price (until a point where the old ones' price starts climbing again...)

If the phone doesn't use a different number of chips, but chips from a different generation - 'economy class' 32GB nearing end-of-life, vs bleeding edge 'high performance' 128GB ones, that would explain the disproportion too.

Comment Re:If the singularity doesn't happen... (Score 1) 154

Did you actually read Aurora? It's worth examining his argument in detail instead of dismissing it outright. KSR suggests that a viable biosphere is a matter of scale that human beings may not be able to achieve even with access to large amount of solar or other energy. As for health, KSR muses that exposure to Earth's biosphere may be vital, even if a space shelter is otherwise well-shielded from radiation and endowed with artificial gravity.

Comment Re:Science fiction != science fact (Score 1) 154

Umm, you are aware that that is science FICTION right?

Umm, you are aware that fiction (and especially science fiction) often serves to set up thought experiments, right? Why get on my case for thinking hypothetically, when it is a pretty normal human activity? In fact, science-minded individuals are more likely to do so than the average.

Comment Re:If the singularity doesn't happen... (Score 1) 154

IIRC, KSR depicted the colonized solar system as being dependent on resources from Earth, and workers on outer planets regularly returned to Earth to maintain their health. While humans could live on the outer planets for some time, they could not have maintained that residence without the mother planet.

Comment Re:If the singularity doesn't happen... (Score 1) 154

You might enjoy reading Kim Stanley Robinson's last novel Aurora which muses that life might be a planetary phenomenon: human beings are inextricably tied to Earth's biosphere and can never move beyond it. Even large generational starships might be unable to maintain a viable biosphere as waste like salt begins building up in the wrong places. (KSR was spurred to write Aurora in part by the critical backlash against his idealistic vision of terraforming in his famous Mars trilogy of two decades ago).

So if the Singularity never happens and human beings can never transition to machine bodies from biological ones, we're not going anywhere.

Comment Re:Denormalize (Score 1) 674

Another of *these* assumptions - that the code will ever be maintained before it reaches end of life.

I'd written code that runs to this day and it's nearly a decade since anyone ever saw the sources.

Yet another is that it's going to be expanded, and so needs to be written in a modular fashion with abstractions for potential expansions.

Data is read from socket, frames are identified in the stream, then decoded, and depending on the content several reactions are undertaken. Four function calls and a switch(). No, I'm not going to implement an event listener system, just because someone imagines we *might* someday receive the data from something else than sockets, that the protocol is changed in unpredictable manner (I define that protocol!), and that someone might (gasp!) need to edit the switch() code, instead of registering handlers for new commands through the API. Twenty lines of code turn into five files by making this more "versatile".

Comment Re:Simple question (Score 1) 162

Who gives a fuck? How does this affect anyone at all? I don't know anyone who has or needs anywhere close to this amount if storage.

I can definitely imagine needing the 15TB one in a few years. After being more of a classical literature and music person for most of my life, I've been getting into film. The canon of great films consists of hundreds of titles, at least. In the past you'd have to be lucky to live in a developed country with a well-stocked library, or have a truly massive disposable income to buy all the DVDs yourself. But people today have an incredible opportunity, regardless of their means or location, to educate themselves about this (or any other) art form thanks to torrent communities.

When you're downloading Bluray rips at full quality, where a single film can be 25GB, then storage space starts filling up quickly. One could delete after viewing to save space, but who knows, maybe someday you'll want to watch a particular title again or show it to a friend or loved one, and at that point there might not be any seeders left on the torrent. So, if storage gets cheap enough, then it's worth keeping it all on disk.

Comment Re:Of course not (Score 1) 643

There was an interesting article about Japan's increasing number of abandoned homes due to the contraction of the population. One problem that this brings is that people who do want to live in their ancestral home or move out to the country, may not be able to get utilities provided, because it simply costs too much to maintain utility infrastructure for so few inhabitants.

There is also the issue of finding enough caretakers for the increasing elderly when the workforce is ever smaller. Unwilling to invite mass immigration, Japan has tried to invest in robotics in elderly care, but these efforts might not be enough.

Comment Re:if there is real competition is space .... (Score 3, Insightful) 84

It's not so simple: the initial investment is huge, and the returns are slow. It takes a visionary (like Musk), with a bottomless well of cash (like Tesla Motors) to enter the playfield. There are safer investments with higher and faster returns if one has that kind of money, and wants to multiply it. Without the "vision" it's simply not going to happen - corporations prefer easy, immediate profits over multi-decade investments, and the asian ones are more conservative that way than the western ones.

For this to happen, it takes a special kind of person in a leadership position. This *might* happen, but I don't see any candidate currently.

Comment Re: Computer? (Score 1) 326

They have a turing-complete CPU. They have memory and storage. They have input and output devices.

That pretty much sets them as general purpose computers.

Oh, that's not their intended purpose - not what they are marketed at. Overcoming the lockdown may take some work. But you CAN run arbitrary computation on them, even with the lockdown.

Even on IPad, where they paid close attention to disable general computing to a degree where Commodore 64 emulator was banned because it runs Commodore BASIC, you can still load a page that contains:

<textarea id=x></textarea> <input type="button" onclick="eval(document.getElementById('x').value)"/>

and type away your general computation in Javascript.

Note, by the same virtue, a Postscript printer is also a general purpose computer. But yeah, using the right Postscript, people were playing chess against Postscript printer/scanner devices - the printer would print the chessboard with the pieces, the player would draw the move with an arrow, then scan it in, the printer would recognize the move, calculate a response and print it out. So, yeah, that's general purpose computers for you.

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