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Submission + - SingularDTV: using Ethereum for DRM on a sci-fi TV show about the Singularity (

David Gerard writes: SingularDTV is an exciting new blockchain-based entertainment industry startup. Their plan is to adapt the DRM that made $121.54 for Imogen Heap, make their own completely premined altcoin and use that to somehow sell two million views of a sci-fi TV show about the Singularity. Using CODE, which is explicitly modeled on The DAO ... which spectacularly imploded days after its launch. There's a white paper, but here's an analysis of why these schemes are a terrible idea for musicians.

Comment Re:VMS is dead; long live WNT (Score 2) 136

You're wrong, and the poster to whom you're replying was more accurate than you.

Dave Cutler was the lead architect for Windows NT, after being headhunted, along with his team leads, from DEC to MS.

He did not work on OS/2 as you claim. He was given the OS/2 v3 project, which is to say Portable OS/2. (IBM kept OS/2 v2, which was the 386 version and which got released under that name and then later had its version number incremented. OS/2 2 was 386-only and IBM's efforts to produce a version for the POWER processors failed.)

OS/2 v3 was the CPU-independent version, little more than a plan, an outline and some header files when Cutler got it. He finished it and made it work, building it on the Intel i960 CPU, codenamed the N10. But MS wanted to distance itself from the OS/2 name and trademark.

So, when the new kernel was running and stable enough, along with its POSIX subsystem, it got a Win32 subsystem, and MS attached the Windows name to it.

Windows on N10. N10 is pronounced "en-ten". They took the initials: NT.

Windows NT is the product of Dave Cutler's labours, and it takes many inspirations from VMS.

No, it's not the same OS. No, it's not directly compatible. But there is a strong connection there.

Windows NT -- and Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7 and 8 -- are the hybrid offspring of VMS and OS/2, as mated together by VMs' architect Cutler.

Comment Re:As Henry Ford said... (Score 1) 278


But the QNX ones look quite good - if only they made them with a decent landscape format keyboard.

The ultimate smartphone formfactor was the Nokia Communicator:

If someone made one of those again, I'd buy it whatever OS it ran... Android, Sailfish Jolla, Tizen, Blackberry 10, even Windows Phone.

Submission + - GNUstep Kickstarter Campaign Launched (

borgheron writes: The maintainer of GNUstep has launched a kickstarter campaign to get the time to make GNUstep more complete and get it's APIs up to at least a Mac OS 10.6 level of compatibility. This will allow applications for Mac OS X to run on Linux with a simple recompile using new tools developed by the GNUstep team to directly build from xcodeproj project files. If the kickstarter project is funded beyond it's $50,000 goal, it's possible that WebKit and Darling might also be completed allowing applications built on Mac OS X to run without the need for a recompile... think WINE-like functionality for Mac OS X applications on other platforms... including Windows, Linux, BSD, etc.

Comment Re:So learn German (Score 4, Informative) 94

It is harder than you think.

I am a former editor of, the site that became the H.

I *do* speak a little German - enough to read the headlines on the internal CMS and request translations of stuff that I thought would be interesting for English-speaking readers. Then the professionally-translated copy needed to be edited by a native English speaker - such as me or one of my colleagues - and the edited version checked over by another editor (because you cannot spot your own mistakes).

It's more labour-intensive (and thus, expensive) than you might think.

As for the site design, it's based off the German one - it's hosted on the same servers and managed through the same CMS. German people like a rather more conservative style of Web design than we are used to on the English-language Web. :-)

Comment UK, 1983-1985 (Score 1) 632

As a Brit, I am not 100% certain what American terms such as "high school" or "grade school" means, but I'm guessing secondary school - age range approximately 16-18.

My school introduced an 'O'-level course in that time period - I think my class might have been the 2nd or 3rd year to do it. The odd thing was that 'O' levels are the 14-16yr exams, so we were doing a more junior course while doing senior exams.

The computer department had 4 already quite elderly Commodore PET machines - I believe model 4032 ones, networked (kinda sorta) over IEEE to a CMD 4040 dual 5¼" disk drive. They later acquired a whole room full of TI99/4As, each with its own cassette recorder and 14" black & white TV set. The PETs were a much more pleasant environment than the TIs - they only got the TIs because they were very cheap. BBC Micros were the standard by then.

I did my coursework on my home computer, a 48K Sinclair ZX Spectrum, as it was more capable than the school computers. Coursework was presented on paper, not in machine-readable form, so it didn't hugely matter on what you wrote your BASIC.

The first lesson, the computer teacher - who was one of the maths teachers - told us all just how useless a Computer Studies 'O'-level would be and that we should all focus on our 'A'-levels, the exams that would secure us a place at University. About half the class walked out.

The rest were told that this was a waste of their time, that they should not do it, that it would not impart any useful skills and was only simple, "Mickey-Mouse" stuff. More walk-outs.

In the end, there were about half a dozen of us, determinedly hanging on. He proceeded to tell us not to do the course, that it was futile and pointless and a distraction that would reduce our chances of getting into Uni.

The rest walked. I stayed.

I made a deal with him. He told me the syllabus; I did it myself, in my own time, and checked in with him once a fortnight to ensure I was on the right track. He wasn't happy and advised against it, but I pressed on.

The following year, half way through my non-course, a full class series was taught, and I sat in on some of those, learning moderately arcane stuff like one's-complement and two's-complement binary arithmetic.

So I ended up tutoring myself in my spare time. I got a 'B' in the end.

The course was quite low-level - binary, octal, hex and conversions; simple programming in BASIC - the 8-bit BASICs of the time mostly did not have things like IF...THEN...ELSE or WHILE...WEND or CASE statements, let alone named procedures or support for local variables and recursion, so it was all quite rudimentary.

I took a step back in time 2y later, studying FORTRAN at Uni as part of a Biology BSc. Got a First in that, but never used the language - the little bit of stats and so on, I did on my Spectrum.

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