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Comment Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 161

Mostly because high res was easier on CRTs especially if you didn't mind horrible blinking, and it took LCDs a long time to catch up.

4K is still very demanding for 3D gaming, but since it's exactly 4X of 1080p scaling isn't a big problem. And artwork looks really beautiful in 4K, which seems a good fit for a game like Starcraft.

Comment How are the companies doing? (Score 1) 249

Everyone here should know that the best possible and worst possible cases are usually extremely artificial and almost never happen.

So I am curious about what has the actual impact of this has been? Because if companies managed to charge 5X what they did before, while delivering the same amount of power, the profits would have soared in an amazing manner. And that probably hasn't happened, because then this would have been noticed far sooner.

So I am curious about if a measure of the resulting average error can be made by looking at energy company economical info.

Submission + - Australian Farmers Switch To Diesel Power As Electricity Prices Soar (

connect4 writes: Local irrigators council representative, Dale Hollis, says right now, irrigators have two options. "They have to switch off the pumps and go back to dryland [cropping], and that impacts upon the productivity of the region and impacts on jobs" he said. "The second option is to go off the grid and look at alternatives."There are plenty of farmers installing panels, but many growers irrigate at night and can't afford the millions of dollars it could take to buy battery storage."

That's pushing many of them back to a dirtier option. "Right now, diesel stacks up" Mr Hollis said.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister claims the country faces an energy crisis, while Tesla claims they could solve the entire problem in less than 100 days, and they have form.

Comment Stupid and unprofitable (Score 2) 80

I looked into it out of curiosity about a year ago and concluded that I could make somewhere around $5 - $15 a month, while spending more on power. It long stopped being worth mining with common hardware.

Of course using someone else's equipment you don't have that downside, but those consequences far outweigh whatever pocket cash he made from it, unless it was installed on an entire cluster.

Comment Re:Oracle worked very hard at making a closed ecos (Score 4, Informative) 198

SQLite isn't remotely competitive with Oracle. It's nowhere near in the same league as even PostgreSQL or MySQL.

SQLite is a toy database with a huge amount of limitations that's found a niche in "I need a RDBMS for something simple, and rarely used". Thus the use for desktops to store things like configuration and music databases. In such cases it works well.

If you're even thinking at all of multicore performance, SQLite is not the database for you. It's got absolutely dreadful concurrency and will die under anything resembling a serious load.

Comment Re:Needless bullshit (Score 3, Informative) 136

Some ISPs and access points have been doing realtime traffic modification and inserting ads into websites. Since it's well known that some ads are malicious, then yes, it's very much beneficial for a recipe site run on SSL, because it makes it impossible to hijack the trusted and harmless site for nefarious purposes, such as serving you some kind of trojan via an ad.

Comment Re:Poor Nick Denton (Score 4, Insightful) 156

Yes, tell yourself this was all about one particular asshole and there's no collateral damage possible to freedom of the press or freedom of speech.

You intend as sarcasm, but that's entirely correct.

Peter Thiel is straight up evil. By all means, sue gawker for invasion of your privacy, outing a billionaire is not very nice I suppose. Billionaire responding by funding lawsuits against the news organization until it shuts down is censorship by any useful meaning of the word though.

Thiel did nothing more than exactly the same thing that's done by the EFF and the ACLU: supporting somebody who has a grievance, but lacks the money to pay for lengthy litigation.

I would have agreed with you if Thiel was supporting completely unfounded lawsuits that had no other purpose than making Gawker lose money by paying for lawyers. But that wasn't the case, Bollea had a very genuine grievance with Gawker, and all Thiel did was contributing money to it. It's not any different than when people fund litigation through aligned organizations (EFF, ACLU), friends and family, or crowdfunding. There's nothing illegal or immoral about it.

Furthermore what is actually disturbing is the implication that money makes right, and the right situation is where one loses a lawsuit not due to lack of merit, but due to the lack of funding, and that there's something wrong with a third party counteracting this.

Comment VR, huh? (Score 2) 69

Let's see.

2160 * 1200 (Oculus Rift CV1) 3 bytes per pixel * 8 bit depth * 90 FPS (Oculus Rift required spec) = 5.5 Gbps.

3840 * 2160 (4K) * 3 bytes per pixel * 8 bit depth * 90 FPS (Oculus Rift required spec) = 17.9 Gbps. At 60 FPS that drops to 11.9 Gbps. To fit in 8 Gbps you have to drop the framerate to 40FPS, which isn't really good for VR.

Yeah, it works for the CV1. But anyone who's used one knows that a higher resolution is badly needed, so obviously the next iteration will have to be better. I've been hearing talk of 8K not being enough for ideal performance.

Comment Damn (Score 4, Insightful) 251

Heads are going to roll all around after an event like this one.

Somebody will probably end up writing a book on what went on inside, because I imagine that the internal meetings had some serious drama involved.

I hope there's going to be a post-mortem at some point, because it would be very interesting to find out what went wrong in the end. Rogue manufacturer? Bad quality control? Maybe the phone doing something wrong with charging, as somebody suggested on reddit?

Comment Re:"free of snow and ice" (Score 1) 163

It's not going to be positive at all.

There's a set amount of energy to work with. The only thing solar panels do there is that now there's a shiny surface so part will be reflected away (making things worse), part will go to heat immediately (but perhaps less efficiently than a well made traditional road, with heat going to internals that eventually transmits to the ground underneath rather than the surface), and part will be stored for later.

Overall though, if a good black surface isn't melting the snow, a shinier surface isn't going to do better. The only upside this would have is being able to use power generated elsewhere or storing it for later, but melting ice electrically takes a brutal amount of power, and will need some seriously beefy cables which I doubt are there, and as for later, whatever batteries these have won't be enough.

Submission + - What are the FLOSS community's answers to Siri and AI? (

jernst writes: A decade ago, we in the free and open-source community could build our own versions of pretty much any proprietary software system out there, and we did. Publishing, collaboration, commerce, you name it. Some apps were worse, some were better than closed alternatives, but much of it was clearly good enough to use every day.

But is this still true? For example, voice control is clearly going to be a primary way we interact with our gadgets in the future. Speaking to an Amazon Echo-like device while sitting on my couch makes a lot more sense than using a web browser. Will we ever be able to do that without going through somebody’s proprietary silo like Amazon’s or Apple’s? Where are the free and/or open-source versions of Siri, Alexa and so forth?

The trouble, of course, is not so much the code, but in the training. The best speech recognition code isn’t going to be competitive unless it has been trained with about as many millions of hours of example speech as the closed engines from Apple, Google and so forth have been. How can we do that?

The same problem exists with AI. There’s plenty of open-source AI code, but how good is it unless it gets training and retraining with gigantic data sets? We don’t have those in the FLOSS world, and even if we did, would we have the money to run gigantic graphics card farms 24×7? Will we ever see truly open AI that is not black-box machinery guarded closely by some overlord company, but something that “we can study how it works, change it so it does our computing as we wish” and all the other values embodied in the Free Software Definition?

Who has a plan, and where can I sign up to it?

Submission + - Dissecting a frame of DOOM

An anonymous reader writes: An article takes us through the process of rendering one frame of DOOM (2016). The game released earlier this year uses the Vulkan API to push graphics quality and performance at new levels.
The article shades light on rendering techniques, mega-textures, reflection computation... all the aspects of a modern game engine.

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