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Comment Re:Fucked up (Score 1) 170

Being able to beat a human isn't a big deal. Being able to do so while using the exact same inputs (key presses) and outputs (a picture of the screen) as a human is a big deal. Doom is definitely a simplified problem set (a given sprite only ever varies in scale and X/Y position), but it's still an impressive feat of machine vision and machine learning.

Comment Apples to oranges comparison (Score 1) 161

They're saying that the cost of a 256GB SSD will cross the price of a 1TB HDD by 2017. Well, OK, so what? 1TB are nowhere near the most cost effective HDDs today, at that's not going to change in the future, and that really means that the 256GB SSD is now only four times the price per gig of the 1TB HDD.

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.

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Thus spake the master programmer: "When a program is being tested, it is too late to make design changes." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"