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Comment Less terrible in notebooks (Score 1) 495

There are two mitigating factors: USB-C allows analog audio output if the host devices supports it (as in, a passive adapter can be used without an additional DAC), and USB-C is a general standard and not proprietary.

As such, if I was given the choice between a Macbook with one USB-C port and one headphone jack, or a Macbook with two USB-C ports... I would take the one with two USB-C ports. It'd be annoying to lose the headphone jack, but overall it'd be a net gain in utility, since it'd enable things like charge-and-display-at-the-same-time without hubs.

Comment Give CBS a call (Score 2) 46

The word is that Star Trek: Discovery may attempt to use Majel Barrett's voice for the computer, due to her having recorded a complete phonetic sample before she passed. If this really does outperform the best available TTS engines, then perhaps DeepMind would be a good fit to generate that for the show: since it's supposed to be a computer, it's not the end of the world if it doesn't sound completely human...

Comment Raid is not backup. (Score 1) 366

I'm ultimately repeating what has been said over and over again here, but perhaps this will add a tiny bit more emphasis:


Get BackBlaze for off-site backups. Or CrashPlan. Whatever. Just get something that is off-site that isn't going to lose your data when your RAID dies because of a controller failure, or a fire, or a flood, or an earthquake, or because a virus or hacker nuked your disks.

Comment Re:It makes the Raspberry PI (Score 4, Informative) 124

The Pi Zero costs the same and has a much faster CPU, 8x the RAM, support for external storage, HDMI video output, nearly three times as many GPIO pins, and its USB/HDMI/Power/Camera ports/sockets are already populated with connectors. How exactly does the Pi "look like daylight robbery"? The only advantage that the Omega2 seems to have is built-in networking support.

I'll be the first to admit that these devices are serving very different purposes (the Omega2 seems to want to be a network-enabled arduino), but it hardly makes the Zero seem like a poor value considering the Zero is so much more powerful/capable.

Comment Hands-free? (Score 3, Insightful) 166

Tesla cars don't support hands-free operation. You're supposed to keep your hands on the steering wheel while using autopilot, and the car will disable auto pilot after a while if you take your hands off the wheel.

Perhaps they should reduce that timeout to discourage people from taking their hands off the wheel entirely.

Comment Re:He is lucky he did not get shot on the spot (Score 2) 235

Drive 350 miles between Montreal and Providence, and you'll pass through four states and one province. An extra 60 miles and you could add another two states to that. 7 states/provinces in 410 miles. Damn straight I've said aloud "What state are we in?" while driving in New England.

Comment Re:Has NVIDIA invented ray tracing? (Score 1) 17

There are demos out there you can look at, using modified Rift HMDs. A company called SMI has been working on it. The limitation isn't the understanding of visual acuity, but the overall polish and sophistication of the implementation:

Another major issue is the ability to actually derive speed benefits from this approach. If you're implementing it by (as they do in this demo) rendering three different views at different resolutions in different passes, there's a fair bit of overhead involved, and I suspect that they'd also have overlap between the layers where they're rendering more than they need to (can you really tell a GPU to render a donut-shaped view and not spend any time on the pixels in the middle? I don't know, but I'm skeptical)

That, I think, is where nVidia's approach comes into play: by removing the performance penalty of rendering multiple projected views, and using the projection to get the detail (and lack thereof) where you want it to be, basically just a more extreme version of the lens-matched rendering that I linked the screenshots of. Refine that, refine the hardware to the point of being consumer-ready, and you start to see some major benefits.

Comment Re:Has NVIDIA invented ray tracing? (Score 1) 17

Your eye can only really see detail in a very small area where you are directly looking (in the centre of your vision), but your brain is very good at filling in the blanks and hiding this fact. It drops off extremely rapidly, and for the vast majority of your field of view, you can resolve barely more than basic colour and movement.

The idea behind foveated rendering is, you use eye-tracking to figure out where the user's eye is looking, and then you render a very small full-detail image and place that where they're looking, and then you render a larger lower resolution image and put that behind it, repeating that until you're rendering very few pixels out around the periphery of the vision. Your eye can't tell that the image is getting less detailed (blurrier, really) as it moves away from your centre of vision, because you can't perceive the lack of detail. Obviously I'm simplifying with the progessively-lower-resolution-images description, but that's the gist of it.

When I say the detail drops off really fast from the centre of your vision, I mean it drops off EXTREMELY fast. Check out this graph:

Just 10 degrees off centre and you can only see 20% of the detail. But current rendering systems would still be drawing 100% of the pixels in that area.

To get an idea about how much processing power you can save with foveated rendering in an ideal case, basically consider the area of that graph overall (the whole square) versus just the area under the line. That's a speedup of multiple times.

I'll qualify all this with, I'm no expert, I've just read into it a bit.

Comment Re:Vacation (Score 1) 765

Canada. Quebec, specifically. The specific text of the law in question (keeping mind this is in a section on employment contracts):

Either party to a contract for an indeterminate term may terminate it by giving notice of termination to the other party.

The notice of termination shall be given in reasonable time, taking into account, in particular, the nature of the employment, the specific circumstances in which it is carried on and the duration of the period of work.

Comment Re:Vacation (Score 1) 765

[citation needed]

Can you cite a statute?

Section 2091 of the Civil Code of Quebec. That's in book five (obligations), title two (nominate contracts), chapter vii (contract of employment):!f...

Either party to a contract for an indeterminate term may terminate it by giving notice of termination to the other party.

The notice of termination shall be given in reasonable time, taking into account, in particular, the nature of the employment, the specific circumstances in which it is carried on and the duration of the period of work.

There is also a more specific law specifically dealing with an employer terminating an employee, so essentially 2091 only applies to employee resignations.

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