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Comment cat (Score 1) 96

Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.
                —Betteridge's law of headlines

Don't panic! This is still science fiction, but it won't be too long before we can use AI to improve development, thanks to smarter tools that learn based on the individual developer's style and application and help write better, higher-quality code.

Indeed, third paragraph in, we're already knee deep into walking back the click bait, and just look at the mess we're in. Yaaaaaawn.

Any speculation as to this author's former occupation?

Comment a corporate magna carta (Score 1) 67

Back in 2008 when Jennifer Stoddart put the snow boots to Facebook, I came up with what still strikes me as a reasonable compromise, that legal proscriptions against reverse engineering only apply to products promising to collect/report no personal information whatsoever (with Draconian thumb screw stockades for corporations affixing a "does not collect" sticker by means of a cryptochemical Volkswagon-grade adhesive).

It just seems wrong that a toy can A) collect personal information, and B) the user has no legal capacity to investigate the nature of the personal data captured.

Wronger than wrong.

Also, such a law would demonstrate that sometimes a halfway sensible compromise is possible to achieve, which means that my proposal has less than a snowball's chance in T. E. Lawrence's head scarf (the sun never sets on the British panopticon).

Comment Re: Now we have investment spam as news (Score 1) 254

"He's a firm believer in the underlying tech and the blockchain as a source of value in itself"

Hm, therein lies perhaps some of the difference between him and me. I was enamoured with the tech early but when I saw the problem of ever increasing blockchain sizes and the pretty much unsustainable quantity of bytes that needs to be shuffled around once the number of transactions increases to anything even approaching a globally accepted scale, and when I wrote a white paper proposing some mechanisms for mitigating this that went completely ignored by the bitcoin developers, I decided that the whole thing, while a great idea in principle, was going to collapse under the weight of the mostly intractible problem of bandwidth.

I still think it's not likely to succeed in the long term, but man was it a clever idea.

Comment as it begins, so it ends (Score 1) 186

I'm not going to blame Fitbit. But they didn't earn any positive karma, either.

Nor am I surprised that the real reason came out of the blue, after it was too late to inform my decision (I would have bought one for spare, while supplies lasted).

Emphasis with Kickstarter is "start". Then it quickly morphs (usually) into the same old close-to-the-vest business wisdom, and you end up with half of the advantage you wished for, and a quarter as much stability as a going concern.

I have zero interest in any other smart watch.

Sigh. It's a sad thing.

Comment three large screens (Score 1) 72

Carousels can suck it.

I've whipped up CSS Userscripts to remove them from web pages more than once, lest I click on one in a moment of weakness (which I always regret 3 s later).

Old motto: there's another fish in the sea. This maxim is true, also, regarding web content. But it often helps to enforce this programmatically.

Comment ctrl-v strikes again (Score 1) 72

Google's main product is advertising and user info (to better target advertising), not search.

And this tired observation moves the discussion forward how exactly?

I've seen this helpful ctrl-v "eyeballs are the product" contribution more than a 100 and probably less than a 1000 times since I joined Slashdot.

Add some useful context? Ah, fuck it. ctrl-v has miles to go before it sleeps.

Comment Re: Now we have investment spam as news (Score 1) 254

How brave was he in holding onto the bitcoins? I bought mine at $30 but got too nervous when they hit $600 and cashed out. I only had about three so it's not like it was a huge windfall. But if I had 1000 bought at 25 cents apiece ... man I am not sure I would have had the guts to stay in past even $10.

Comment Re:I think you're mistaken about gold (Score 1) 254

What do you say to the fundamental criticism that deflation decreases incentive to work? If I have a huge nugget of gold, there is little or no more being mined out of the ground, and the size of the economy is increasing, then effectively all I will need to do to live comfortably is shave off smaller and smaller pieces of gold each year to pay for my needs.

Deflation seems like it helps people who have already accumulated wealth. Inflation seems like it helps people who have not accumulated wealth.

I'm in preference of the latter.

Comment Re:Qualcomm doesn't make chips (Score 2) 106

You're entirely right that the memory subsystem is 90% of the battle for most server workloads once you exceed ten cores.

For integer workloads with unreasonable parallelism and unreasonable cache locality (that Intel's AVX doesn't already handle almost ideally), I'm sure this design will smoke Intel on the thermal management envelope, a nice niche to gain Qualcomm some traction in the server mix, but hardly a shot heard around the world.

And Qualcomm better be good, because Intel will soon respond with Omni-Path Knights Hill—perhaps also larded with HBM—that could probably take on the same workload between power sprints (less power efficiency in the CPU itself—which isn't always the main power draw—and probably more flexible as part of a tidy one-vendor-rules-them-all server mix).

I'm all for vendor diversity, but let's not get ahead of ourselves thinking that 10 nm levels the playing field, sucking down the data aquifer through a double-wide handful of drinking straws.

Yes, core count matters, but size matters even more when it comes to the hose.

Looky looky, the bow moveth:

Intel announcements for AI: Nervana 100x faster than GPU, Knights Crest & Mill 4x faster, SKL mid-17

Kx Streaming Analytics Crunches 1.2 Billion NYC Taxi Data Points using Intel Xeon Phi

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