Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

Comment Re:GD+T matters (Score 1) 65

When you specify that a batteries maximum envelope is X, and the supplier provides a battery which has a maximum envelope greater than X then, yes, it's a supplier problem.

Except that this isn't what happened, according to the much-more-detailed Anandtech article. Samsung specified the maximum exterior dimensions of the pouch, but those dimensions weren't big enough to accommodate the battery material itself. The second battery was slightly thicker, but suffered the same failure because of the thickness of welds on the very same parts that caused the first battery failure.

When you look at these failures together, it seems reasonable to suggest that Samsung's specifications were pushing the limits of battery technology to the breaking point, and that these unreasonable specifications were the common root cause of both battery failures. In other words, yes, there are limits to how thin you can make a battery and still have it be safe.

Comment Re:As someone with a masters in this -exact field- (Score 1) 233

If you are a true master, you should be able to explain concepts in a way that even a child can understand

This is, in a word, horse pucky. It's the same reasoning my niece uses to justify her anti-vaxxer beliefs: the quacks and charlatans she listens to are more credible than epidemiologists and immunologists because they're easier to understand. This is the real-life equivalent of the joke about searching for the $20 bill under the street light because where you actually lost it is inconveniently dark.

If it were true that a child could understand anything, there wouldn't be a need for education. You'd just find a "true expert" to explain, say, fluid dynamics to a random bunch of people off the street and then set those randos to work designing aircraft. Or cryptographic systems.

There's an unfortunate cultural trend to devalue anything that requires mental effort and dedication to understand as elitist bullshit. This is a dangerous development, especially when combined with our national vanity: ever since the Moon landing we see technological and scientific leadership as a birthright. It's not. It's something we have to earn, and continue earning every day by dint of hard labor.

The humbling truth is that real understanding in many things requires trekking a long and arduous road. It's a near certainty that you don't actually understand General Relativity; crude analogies about balls and rubber sheets notwithstanding. General Relativity is like a mountain that looks easy to tackle from a great distance, but the fact is it takes years of toil before you can even grasp how arduous the foothills of Mount Einstein are.

Comment Of course... (Score 4, Interesting) 65

Of course, if they hadn't been so greedy and stupid as to design a non-user-replaceable battery into the phone, they would have been able to simply send out a relatively low-cost component to the afflicted users, instead of incurring a 5.3 billion dollar loss and severely inconveniencing every one of their note 7 customers (at the very least.)

It was their insistence on screwing the customer with planned obsolescence that bit them. They deserved to be bitten.

As does any company that designs in a non-replaceable, limited-lifetime component — much less one that is non-replaceable, limited-lifetime, and potentially dangerous.

Comment Re:Gouge the middle class to make them poor (Score 0) 248

Of course, the nuclear family of the 1950s had:
a 1200 (not 2200) sqft house,
formica (not granite) counters, ...

But the house was owned - with a mortgage affordable on a single income and substantial equity in place.

The car was also either owned or being purchased on an auto loan (rather than leased), again with substantial equity from the down payment, and again paid for out of that single income - which was also feeding and clothing the 2.3 children and taking a nontrivial vacation once a year or so.

And I have no idea where you are getting those square footage numbers. Our family's houses (we moved a couple times once Dad got done with his degree and was buying rather than living in a student ghetto) were substantially larger than you describe, and were typical of the neighborhoods around them.

Yes, Formica: It was the big deal of the time. Granite is a recent vanity - and a REALLY STUPID idea if you actually USE the kitchen to prepare food on a regular basis. Drop a ceramic or glass utensil on a granite counter and it breaks. Drop it on Formica-over-plywood-or-hardwood and it usually bounces.

stainless steel appliances,
automatic dishwasher,
automatic dryer,
*might* have had a TV (not a 54" LCD),

Yeah we had all those boxes (though the appliances were be enamel rather than stainless). Also a console sound system - pre "Hi Fi" - AM, FM, and four-speed record changeer with diamond needle in the pickup.

The non-electronic appliances lasted for decades, too. (Even the electronics lasted a long time with occasional maintenance - which was required for vacuum tube based equipment - and was AVAILABLE.) Quite unlike the modern stuff. (My own family has been in our townhouse for about 17 years now and is on its third set of "stainless steel appliances", thanks to the rotten construction of post-outsourcing equipment by formerly high-end manufacturers. We're even on our third WATER HEATER: The brain of the new, governent mandated, eco-friendly, replacement flaked out after less than a year - and the manufacturer sent TWO MORE defective replacement brains and one defective gas sensor before lemon-replacing it.)

Comment Re:Gouge the middle class to make them poor (Score 4, Insightful) 248

It sounds more fair when you say charge less in poorer countries. However when you turn it around, it is gouge the people in less poor countries.

Especially given that GDP is not evenly distributed among the population. The bulk of the added revenue from technology driven productivity improvements (at least in the US) has gone to the denizens of the C suites and the government, not to the workers. GDP has soared while real-inflation adjusted after-tax income has stagnated or dropped for decades.

That's much of why a nuclear family in the '50s got along fine on a single income and a two-parent family now involves both parents working and the kids in child care, and the bulk of kids are in "non-traditional" family arrangements and/or on some form of public assistance.

So "gouge the developed world's middle class" is indeed what such a GDP-based scheme would accomplish.

Comment Re:Is it true? (Score 4, Informative) 233

I never saw that in the many years I was working primarily with C++ and a regular reader of the related newsgroups. When Bjarne did contribute in any forums I followed, he generally seemed direct and reasonable, and it was usually in the more advanced discussions about tricky areas or the future of the language.

Comment Re:More accessible alternatives? (Score 2) 162

It depends on exactly what you are after. Sedgewick has/had a few books called "Algorithms in C++/Pascal/??" that was decent light coverage. "Algorithms + Data Structures = Programs" by Wirth is pretty good, but I don't think it was ever translated out of Pascal. And the current modern approach is Google (I only recommend that one as a supplement).

P.S.: One of the Sedgewick books had several errors in the algorithms, so be sure you don't get the first edition.

Comment Re:The dumbing down is real (Score 1) 162

Well...there are partial orderings where the order can only be determined between parts of the covered domain, but global consistency is a requirement. I can imagine cases where time at which something was noticed was blended with the value of what was noticed which could yield contradictory interpretations if you ignored the time, and various other permutations.

The GPs actual claim is, as you say, rubbish, but it may be a simplified abstraction of an underlying true statement. (Or he could be a troll.)

Comment Re: Why not extend "Concrete Mathematics"? (Score 2) 162

Introduction to Algorithms by Cormen et. al. is a good book and covers part of the same space.

I do agree that he uses MIX more than is needed, but it's necessary for a part of what he covers. For other parts C would be a superior substitute. And while I keep several works on algorithms on my shelves, and rarely turn to Knuth, we something isn't covered well elsewhere, that's where I turn.

Comment Re:The "math" of AOCP very important in real world (Score 2) 162

Some of them *are* just like programmers. Others... well, be kind.

That said, all of the higher level languages tend to obscure computational complexity to the point where I can frequently only tell exactly which approach is better by measuring after writing the code in more than one way. Too much magic dust between the level at which I'm writing at and the level it compiles to. But I still think that to be a decent programmer you need to understand things like index registers, storage allocation, and probably accumulators, even though no current chip has them (at the assembler level...probably at the microcode level).

OTOH, if I'm working at the assembler level, then synchronizing thread data visibility is beyond me. (Well, so is most stuff. I haven't done assembler language programming on any modern chip. The last one was the Z80.)

But without the assembler background (MIX would count) you can't build a good mental model of C, and without a good mental model of a basic compiler language, you can't really understand a dynamically allocated vector (or array, depending on your language).

I'm not sure that starting at the top, Python/PHP/Ruby/Scratch/Logo/etc., and building your understanding down will ever work. I haven't seen any good examples. (OTOH, I've certainly seen examples of starting at assembler and then not being able to build up, so perhaps.)

It used to be said that a good programmer tried to learn a new language every year. But that was back when languages were both very different and small. Still, I'd recommend that any programmer work his way through some sort of assembler, C, Scheme, Erlang, and Java. C++ is too big to include. Ada and Eiffel would be good additions, but don't add anything really important. Smalltalk seems to be dieing out, but you should pick up the Scratch dialect, which shouldn't take as much as a week. If you want you could substitute Logo or Lisp for Scheme. The idea here isn't to really master the languages. Just to learn them enough to create something fairly simple, a bit beyond "Hello, World", but not necessarily as fancy as tic-tac-toe.

And anyone who does that counts as a "real programmer", even if they prefer to use Javascript or php...or even bash. Some others will also count as "real programmer", because being a "real programmer" is a matter in interest rather than skill or experience. An inclusive test isn't an exclusive test.

FWIW, I once taught someone to code in Fortran, and he went on to become a professional programmer, but he wasn't a "real programmer", because his interests were in business and astrology, not programming. He *was* a skilled programmer. He was quite intelligent. But that wasn't where his interests were, so he wasn't a "real programmer".

Comment but wait; there are markings (Score 1) 141

The abos are not so innocent as the liberals want to portray them after all.

Here's the thing: the upside of inventing a writing system is world domination; the downside is finally having to admit in public that you are a real ass (and always have been).

In the above, "you" is a set of nesting dolls, innermost being the fifty-year-old white male technocrats of western European origin who treat Wikipedia as their private, personal playgrounds (thence to aging white European males, white European males, white males, whites altogether, etc.)

Here's the second thing: after a society invents writing, soon the society has written myths (with serious legacy entrenchment) that innocence preceded the current sad state of affairs (how-far-I-have-fallen porn, not that the larger consequences can't be remedied by kneeling under the right cumulus cloud for a thoroughly abject sixty seconds).

Society will re-invent writing over and over again (movable type, Movable Type) before the reversal of true illumination makes the least headway: that the human asshole apogee was attained circa the advent of the original edged weapon.

As far as the abos go, they all need to repeat to themselves "there but for the grace of God go I", unless they think their ancestors truly enlightened enough to not have had even the most remote possibility of inventing any form of written record, whatsoever (best if you're not much past the wreathie leafy loin cloth, because any loose thread threatens to quipu a long record, and then immediately you're on the outie asshole train along with every other post-prehistoric posse of mugs, pugs, and thugs).

Comment Re:Important milestone (Score 1, Flamebait) 154

Google's AI is literally leaps-and-bounds ahead of the game in that respect as the search space is so much unbelievably huger than chess that chess is laughable in comparison.

Most people are too nice to point this out, but what you just wrote here amounts to waving a bright red "I'm an idiot" flag.

Consider this: the search space of Go 25x25 is so much unbelievably huger than Go 19x19 that Go 19x19 is laughable in comparison.

But wait, I'm not done.

Consider this: the search space of Go 37x37 is so much unbelievably huger than Go 25x25 that Go 25x25 is laughable in comparison.

Just two strides, and I'm already breaking into a Cantor.

Consider this: the search space of AES 512 is so much unbelievably huger than AES 256 that AES 256 is laughable in comparison.

Are you still laughing?

Check out Game complexity. By your chosen criteria, Connect6 19x19 two decimal orders of magnitude more manly than mere Go.

Really? That's the standard you judge by?

Slashdot Top Deals

Never keep up with the Joneses. Drag them down to your level. -- Quentin Crisp

Working...