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Comment Re:infrastructure (Score 1) 57

I'm sure it will make sense to plenty of non-google engineers.

Unless those non-Google engineers have already heard of ftp, scp, rsync, etc.

The only real problem with sharing on home connections involves NAT, ISP ToS, etc: being findable and connectable. Rent a VPS and install OpenVPN on it, have your home fileserver connect to it, and it's solved.

Comment Re:Can Uber really make money at this? (Score 1) 116

Does it really make sense economically for Uber to get 100% of the cost of a ride this way but having to spend money to buy main, maintain and insure cars?

If you hypothesize that robot drivers can really do the job sufficiently well, the conclusion is an extremely strong and obvious yes. Taxis, limo services, etc are already viable business models even when you have all those same expenses plus a driver to pay. Remove the driver expense and it only gets more viable.

Or is this another sign of a company that doesn't know what it is doing, perhaps most recently suggested by the recent charges of sexism and sexual harassment?

It's possible they don't know what they're doing, but this certainly isn't a sign. It all comes down to whether or not you think robots perform as well as humans, and this story merely works from the conclusion that they can; it doesn't show any strengths or weaknesses of the premise itself.

Comment Re:Good ol' days (Score 0) 121

The reason is both the reason for its success and the reason for its failure. The Pascal language makes a lot of compromises in areas of readability and organization to allow for small compilers. In the case of PCs, it was much easier to write a Pascal compiler that ran well off a 128k floppy than a C compiler. That stopped mattering pretty quickly.

Comment Re:Pascal-based? (Score 1, Redundant) 121

Well first off the super computers aren't about the Pascal language but the Pascal chip. I'd disagree that Pascal was all that proven out. It seemed very quickly to have had structural flaws which caused other languages to overtake it. Pascal was fairly low level yet it lacked good low level interfaces. Which is why it lost out to C. Pascal supports admit this and one of the main directions of Turbo Pascal / Delphi was to introduce into Pascal handling for lower level code (example partial compilation).

If you think of Pascal as a higher level language where bad handling of low level code is acceptable it also wasn't competitive. Pascal is strongly typed but has a poor type system without abstractions. Making types difficult to work with under almost all conditions. It had poor handling of static vs. dynamic data including things like abstracting networks or file systems. There are lots of sacrifices in organization for ease in writing small compilers. A very good choice for early 1980s PC compilers that had to run off a floppy not a good choice since. The languages strictness on looping structures tended to result in duplicate code.

Etc... Pascal was a partial success. But it died for good reasons.

Comment Re:Tools and movements (Score 1) 216

There is a pretty easy middle ground: multiple signatures per identity. You could then have authority(s) vouching for your identity, plus other people too. This makes it much easier to catch a defector. "Hey, how come the Turkish intelligence service (a CA that almost everyone trusts on the web) just signed this guy's brand new key, but Verisign hasn't?" (or better: "how come the federal CA and this guy's state CA disagree?")

Comment Re:Not insignificant (Score 2) 271

When the program was started, the minimum salary was set at $60,000. Adjusted for inflation, it would be $110,000 today.

Not many bachelor's degree programmers with less than 7 year experience make $110,000.

Any fixed value we set it too would quickly become cheap again due to inflation.

So we need to set it at a quintile. If we said that H1B's had to be paid a minimum of top 10% income, then companies would only import workers they really needed (as was intended).

However, the cow is out of the barn. If wages go up in the U.S., many companies will simply offshore the work. Try to ban it, and they'll set up "separate" companies under the corporate umbrella offshore which do the work.


Comment Re:Another breakthrough! News at 11! (Score 1) 218

The number of charge cycles and the capacity of batteries has been improving by 5-8 percent per year for a while.
That's slow enough that you don't notice it but 2016 batteries last 2 to 3 times as many charge cycles as 2008 batteries lasted.

For example:
300 cycles MacBook (Mid 2007)

500 cycles MacBook (13-inch Aluminum, Late 2008)

1000 cycles MacBook Pro (15-inch, Late 2016)

Capacities of the batteries have also increased similarly (if not even more). Some laptops ran off of batteries with the capacity in milliamp hours that we now run our smartphones with.

And the cost of the batteries has dropped by over 75% during the same time period.

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