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Comment Re:Check the details (Score 1) 448

I think we all knew that Bill Nye would not have made a statement like in the headline. It's just clickbait, but people want to complain about it anyway.

Really not sure if this is sarcasm or not. The headline is "Bill Nye explains that the flooding in Louisiana is the result of climate change" and in the video he is asked about the flooding in Louisiana and says "This is the result of climate change" so it is really not clear what the problem is what that headline.

Comment Re:Followed by: (Score 1) 448

Or more accurately Bill Nye says "it is reasonable that these storms are connected to [climate change]", and the media cannot understand the difference between drawing a probable conclusion and drawing a definitive conclusion. Bill Nye never said this was absolutely because of climate change.

Or more accurately, the very first thing that he says (46 secs into the video) is "This is the result of climate change, and its only going to get worse". No ifs, no buts, no probabilities, just a plain statement of fact.

And I don't buy the idea that he was misquoted and they twisted what he said. Bill Nye is a media personality who has been on the TV for decades, and he knows how to put his message across. He is savvy enough to know that this kind of remark will be picked up and used as headlines, and any equivocation that follows will be ignored. He is smart enough to know that he could have said "This might be the result of climate change" or "This could be the result of climate change" and it would have been reported that way.

Submission + - ARM to be sold to Softbank (

chr1sb writes: From the BBC: UK technology firm ARM Holdings is to be bought by Japan's Softbank for £24bn ($32bn) it confirmed on Monday.
The board of ARM is expected to recommend shareholders accept the offer — which is around a 43% premium on its closing market value of £16.8bn on Friday.
The Cambridge-based firm designs microchips used in most smartphones, including Apple's and Samsung's.
ARM, which was founded in 1990, employs more than 3,000 people.
Shares in the UK technology firm surged by 45% at the open of the London Stock Exchange to 1,742.85p per share, adding £7.56bn to ARM's market value.

Comment Re:touchpad (Score 1) 80

I don't like 'drag lock' functions because then that makes more steps. You have to three finger click, and then drag, and then three finger click. Too many actions for one operation. With a mouse it is basically one action, hold button and move mouse.

With the Mac trackpad it is one action: Press with three fingers and drag.

Clicking with three fingers gives the Dictionary and Thesaurus :)

Comment Re:Your government at work (Score 1) 336

Just because they use it more doesn't make them more savvy. The burning video did them more harm than good.

I'm not sure what harm you think it caused them but it certainly helped them achieve their goals. It gained huge attention to their cause and doubtlessly encouraged many other people to join them. They want to fight the US so antagonising them is not harmful, so by their distorted morality it did them more good and no harm.

Comment Re:Deja vu all over again (Score 1) 112

I'm not seeking to prove a claim. It's just the way things are.


Accordingly a CPU with a real Huffman coded instruction set might be even better.

The additional cost of caching, decoding and branching with bit-aligned variable-length instructions would outweigh any benefit from reduced instruction fetch bandwidth. It would take more gates and more energy, which is why nobody does it. Talk to the people at Intel and ARM who know about this sort of thing, or look at the trends in instruction set design for high-performance CPUs and ask yourself why none of them have gone in this direction.

The exception to this is situations where code space is very tight or memory bandwidth is very low, which is true is some embedded environments but not in high performance systems.

I don't need to presume, I know that they removed some complex instructions because they made the hardware more complex and reduced performance.

Which contradicts the evidence of the vast majority of CPUs ever made, which is they get faster as you throw more gates at them.

More gates only make CPUs faster if they are doing useful work. Wasting gates on complex decode or complex instruction semantics reduces performance.

Comment Re:Deja vu all over again (Score 1) 112

there is a linear relationship between code density and the functional bandwidth of the instruction caching at every level.

Even if this were true (which it isn't), and even if you were right that CISC has twice the code density of RISC (which it doesn't), it would still be a long way short of proving your claim that CISC gives better performance than RISC.

I don't presume to understand why ARM do what they do.

I don't need to presume, I know that they removed some complex instructions because they made the hardware more complex and reduced performance.

Comment Re:Deja vu all over again (Score 1) 112

I don't know what the use case for ARM would be. They have less performance per thread, a smaller maximum system image and a few other downsides.

ARM servers should have lower power per operation, which is a critical factor for data centres. So far this theoretical advantage hasn't been fully realised, but neither has it been comprehensively disproved.

Comment Re:Deja vu all over again (Score 1) 112

The Huffman like encoding of CISC instructions is certainly more beneficial for performance than the benefits of a 'simpler' instruction format which take twice the instruction bandwidth to do the same thing.

This is far from certain. Most instruction sets are decoded into mutliple RISC-like instructions (uops) which are then executed. The advantage of having a more compact instruction set is balanced by the greater energy required to decode those instructions, so there is no clear winner either way.

If the benefits of CISC are so great, why did ARM remove complex instructions from their 64-bit architecture rather than adding new ones?

Comment Autonomous Early Braking (Score 1) 304

In the EU this is called Autonomous Early Braking and is effecively mandatory on all new cars (you don't get an NCAP rating without it). The argument, as others have explained, is not that this technology is foolproof but that the benefits outweigh the disadvantages.

I've no idea if EU cars will keep this feature in US models, but it would be great if we could use the same terminology on both sides of the Atlantic.

Comment Re:I won't notice (Score 1) 332

Resolution has always referred to the number of pixels available on the screen.

Resolution has multiple meanings, this one is a late arrival to the list. In the early days of Computer Graphics the term was used in the scientific sense that applies, for example, to telescopes.

I don't object to this new meaning, but it is simply not true to say that this is the only meaning of that word in the context of electronic displays.

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