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Comment Re:What exactly are they doing with it? (Score 3, Insightful) 55

It's a distributed trust network, right? Why would banks that survive on trust want that distributed?

Apparently, they don't. Each institution is building its own, private blockchain to stay buzzword compliant, not because it makes any technical sense.

It's like hearing about the Internet for the first time, and proceeding to build a private, closed version -- which really happened several times, but eventually people realized that the whole point about the Internet is not being private or closed.

Comment Re:Monero (XMR) is the most private payment method (Score 1) 212

Monero ( is the most private existing cryptocurrency.

Not quite. It's one of the most private ones.

It is similar to Bitcoin but based on an entirely distinct codebase (CryptoNote).

This should already ring a bell -- it's based on something else. There are a few other CryptoNote coins, which are no less private. Some of them have technical advantages, like being much faster to update the local blockchain. In addition, there are other privacy-oriented cryptocoins which have nothing to do with CryptoNote.

Monero's advantage is having a large developer/support base. IMHO, Monero is like the Microsoft of privacy-oriented cryptocoins, with lots of money and men in suits behind it. While they can deliver their product, they're not exactly the most exciting tech.

Comment Re:Incorrect (Score 1) 178

Instead we get a chunk of silicon that can't be used for anything except x265

That is not at all the case, for instance all of Apples advanced math libraries (under the umbrella "Accelerate") will make use of a GPU if one is present and faster than at the CPU. They handle things like linear algebra stuff (linpack) and all sorts of vector operations, including FFT...

This sounds very much like OpenCL or CUDA, or whatever the Applets call when you do general computing on GPU shaders. The video decoding bit is a different ASIC altogether.

That said, it would be nice to do more of these common operations like video decoding in GPGPU software instead of all these different bits for different purposes. I understand that some of the open-source GPU drivers already do some video decoding in the shaders, but that's about it. I guess something like ffmpeg/libva in OpenCL is too much to ask, since many people already have strong enough CPUs for those things, and there are no obvious efficiency gains compared to dedicated decoding hardware.

Comment Re:Also significant is CPU burden (Score 1) 178

we get a chunk of silicon that can't be used for anything except x265, which I'm sure will have Windows drivers and be supported in Flash player, and maybe will get experimental Linux support 2 years after.

I watch H.265 videos with MPlayer on Linux, using an Nvidia GPU for the decoding. Admittedly, it's with the closed Nvidia drivers, but apparently the free drivers also handle the video decoder. It's dead easy since the VDPAU interface is fully open -- doing the same on Intel or AMD GPUs needs some extra work, and the results are not as nice. Of course, not all GPUs have the decoders in the first place.

Comment Re:Am I The Only One... (Score 1) 46

... who laments the loss of the humble 2.5" HDD [or, at the very least, a removable 2.5" SSD] from a laptop or netbook these days?

I understand why companies are moving away from the idea of removable, normalized-size drives [it's cheaper to make the machine when it's just a daughter-board] but the loss of flexibility really chafes.

There are standards for smaller flash drives, but the situation isn't looking quite universal. One thing that bugs me is the smaller version of SATA in 1.8'' drives; the shared connector between 3.5'' and 2.5'' drives was an incredible improvement over the PATA situation.

Generally, I find it dumb when "desktop" and "mobile" components are artificially segregated by the use of different connectors etc., while it's really the same computer tech underneath. I like to use quiet and low-power stuff for my non-mobile needs, basically because I have to pay for the electricity and listen to the fans myself. Also, you'd think it were cheaper to build fewer different models of everything. SATA for 2.5'' and 3.5'' was a brief moment of sanity, and now we're in the same mess again.

Comment Re:Linux - Gentoo based (Score 1) 599

Gentoo since 2003. Back then, there were no install CDs and the documentation was kind of lacking, so you had to start with another Linux distro and work from there.

At the time, I had also experimented with NetBSD and I loved the cleaner Unix style, but hardware support was seriously lacking. Fortunately, I found Gentoo which takes the BSD framework into a GNU userland with the Linux kernel, and everything has been perfect ever since.

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