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Comment Re:Supplier contracts. (Score 2) 28

Only if Intel misrepresented their product to Apple. If they did lie; that's going to be one unhappy conference call; but if they were chosen for being an adequate second source to reduce Apple's reliance on Qualcomm, rather than for being an equal or superior performer, this doesn't necessarily suggest that Intel failed to deliver what they promised.

Comment Dystopian future is predictable... (Score 1) 272

I wish I could be more surprised; but that just isn't an option.

Between the ongoing and aggressive expansion of what software EULAs claim the right to restrict; and the truly amazing contractual terms you can impose without anyone saying mean things like 'unconscionable' or 'contract of adhesion'; what would you expect to happen?

This thing is loaded with firmware that never leaves the vendor's control(either legally, since the claim is that it is licensed not sold; or in practice, since it remains in frequent contact with HQ for the life of the vehicle); and Tesla is in a fairly strong position to impose whatever contractual relationship they want; since there isn't much of an aftermarket; and even if you do buy a used vehicle, and have no direct relationship with Tesla, you aren't exactly going to take the car down to the local garage when it needs service or parts.

It is a trifle interesting that they are feeling confident enough to push the restriction before they even have their 'tesla network' in place; but it is no surprise at all that they have decided to never let go of the product.

Comment Re:Only $900? (Score 1) 120

Especially if the guy you are trying to bribe purchased an ~$850 smartphone a short while ago; and had immediate access to at least one other device capable of filming its fiery suicide. He may or may not have been able to sensibly afford it; but if he could scrape up enough cash and/or credit to get the seller to hand it over it is unlikely that he considers $900 to be some amazing amount of money.

Comment Re:Been there, done that, got cancelled (Score 2) 231

This is why most of the people involved with OCP are either companies that buy enormous amounts of server capacity; or suppliers who fear that they'll be discarded entirely if they don't participate.

CHRP cut directly against Apple's business of selling computers. OCP is gunning for servers and switches. Apple sells neither; but buys a lot of both given how much 'cloud' they are serving up these days.

Clearly they decided that it wasn't in their interests to participate(whether because they'd rather do it in house; or just because their margins allow them to sit back and adopt anything interesting once it matures); but OCP doesn't directly cannibalize Apple's business in the way CHRP did.

Comment Re:odd--- (Score 2) 231

It's also a story about technical people who have options. If Apple's standards for their network were so exacting and impressive, it is pretty unlikely that they had anyone just clinging to the job because they didn't have much hope of finding another one.

If you are already considered good enough with the existing tech that unemployment isn't a serious concern; and your current employer is specifically denying you the opportunity to be part of the cool new tech, why would that inspire you to stay with them?

You can get real hotshots, if the project is interesting and/or the money is good(or the stock options are risky but have the possibility of being really, really, good); and you can usually find people to work with a given system, no matter how legacy, weird, or unpleasant, if the money is good enough; and you can also get people who are unambitious and pretty easy to keep happy; but getting all of those simultaneously is much, much, less likely, if possible at all.

I don't doubt that Apple was able to hire a new networking team; they can certainly afford it; but telling people "No, it is going to be your job to maintain this legacy system and we aren't going to touch the cool new thing" is not exactly a motivational speech.

Comment What I told you was true; from a certain point... (Score 3, Insightful) 284

Well, kinda-sorta-ish... If you adopt a definition of 'platform' that somehow excludes Linux and the BSDs, which, while certainly not the best option for all purposes, are trivially more 'open' than any proprietary platform; he might have a more reasonable point.

Despite some unpleasant attempts in that direction(Windows RT, the exciting new Windows Store, Cortana-integrated-into-all-sorts-of-things, etc.), MS isn't nearly as control-freaky as Apple is; and, while they have gotten worse about it, aren't quite as ruthless about terminating everything that isn't the most current version. They are also arguably less enthusiastic about lock-in than Oracle(because who could be more enthusiastic?); and offer compatibility with a much wider selection of 3rd party stuff than IBM; but that's hardly the same as 'most open'. It is true that they are hardly the least open; but 'most open platform' isn't really something you have a shot at when you ship many of your core products as binaries only under proprietary licenses.

Comment Yes? (Score 2) 163

It doesn't seem like much of a surprise that starting a fight between POSIX and NT ACLs is going to end badly; but this 'review' fails pretty dramatically at answering the question of how much of a problem this is.

If you can't, in practice, let the Linux side touch the Windows side, or vice versa, lest ugly and inscrutable things happen, then you might as well just run a VM. If you can actually do a variety of interesting things across systems, so long as you avoid a few edge cases, that is potentially more useful.

Comment Re:Is This a Joke? (Score 2) 270

Honestly, the really surprising thing is that they are resorting to boring, old, legacy, 'government'; rather than trying to 'disrupt homelessness' by building a social/mobile/augmented reality 'app' where you compete to score points by harassing the undesireables with drones; and somehow get some in-app purchases and a gamified 'freemium' model in there.

Just demanding that state force be applied to people who annoy you is so...luddite. Not disruptive at all.

Comment Re:Translation (Score 1) 183

Handwriting doesn't cut it for straight text speed; but it is very handy for situations where you have text mixed with diagrams, equations, or the like. LaTex's ability to generate really pretty equations makes it worth it for final drafts; but if you are just trying to take notes in math class you have to be really good with the markup for that to feel natural; and unless you think in SVG drawing pictures with a keyboard is a bit tricky.

The harder problem, at least with the devices I've had the opportunity to use, is getting a computer stylus interface to equal or exceed the convenience of a few dollars worth of office supplies and boring paper. Having things auto-digitized is nice; but the slightest bit of input lag, software that doesn't know how to treat stylus input, calibration issues, or similar nuisances gets really bothersome really fast.

Comment Re:Yes, and? (Score 1) 145

Interesting. I hadn't considered pronoun reference(since, for humans, it seems to come naturally); but now that you mention it I can see how it would be a fairly brutal mess to try to codify.

(Purely as an aside; I applaud your choice of a rather fascinating, and magnet-obsessed, Jesuit polymath as a pseudonym. His theories may not have aged well; but he is a very, very, interesting guy.)

Comment Re:Home Brew (Score 2) 47

Indeed, I suspect that (as with low end routers) there are substantially fewer distinct designs than there are brand names and rebadges, which would make 3rd party firmware easier. On the minus side, in areas where rebadging is the rule it can be a real pain to ensure that you get the same hardware reliably: if your vendor is slapping their badge on one ODM's cheapo board today, they could(and not infrequently do) switch to slapping the same brand and model name on an entirely different board with approximately similar capabilities tomorrow.

This is hardly unique to IP cameras and DVRs, the OpenWRT hardware support wiki is loaded with examples of routers that sell under the same model name and number but are totally different internally(as well as ones that are sold by completely different companies, and internally identical) and USB peripherals, the nastier PCI/PCIe cards; and even computers that aren't associated with 'business' brands that promise image stability will sometimes swap chips without notice.

I'm not sure if it's a specific business decision, or some sort of culture/language thing; but these sorts of situations always struck me as an opportunity for some entrepreneurial type in China to simultaneously distinguish their product(albeit for a limited market) and get some software development and localization done more or less for free: Western FOSS tinkerers love cheap hardware to play with; and while some established vendors play fairly nice, the combination of 'IP' enthusiasm and a desire to tie hardware to various cloud services and app stores often limits how cooperative establshed western brands are with what the FOSS people want(eg. Intel recognizes the value of having non-awful, in-kernel, drivers for their NICs and chipsets and stuff, since Linux is serious business in the server market; but takes a "your motherboard comes with cryptographically signed UEFI, and you'll like it." attitude). If you have the necessary contacts and business relationships with hardware manufacturers, access to datasheets, etc. you could position yourself above the other rebadge outfits by assuring that your product has a known, stable, chipset and hardware design inside; and by being as helpful as possible to OpenWRT or an analogous effort; and both reap extra hardware sales from tinkerers who want to be sure that they are getting hardware with good 3rd party firmware support; and have the option of basing your official firmware on the 3rd party work; rather than the in-house atrocities that so often ruin otherwise decent hardware.

I don't doubt that it is harder than it looks; and my Mandarin isn't remotely good enough to try; but if I had hardware that offers excellent value, ruined by firmware that is utter crap, it seems like this could be a win-win.

Comment Fantastic. (Score 1) 131

I can only hope(though doubt) that the person responsible for this 'innovation' is appropriately ashamed of who they are and what they have done.

There are plenty of people who are useless; but this winner is actively making the world just a little bit worse. I hope that weighs on them.

Comment Re:Or, you know... (Score 1) 145

I strongly suspect that such a product wouldn't go out through the same channels as the product that Samsung is actually proud of; but I have encountered various 'de-branded' hardware items where the item didn't pass muster with its actual vendor for whatever reason(maybe a refurb, maybe a product line that got killed, I don't know what goes on behind the scenes, though I'd be quite interested to) and it ends up having some anonymous packaging and an inferior warranty slapped on it, with a correspondingly lower price tag.

At least in the case of HP, the practice is common enough that the de-brand has its own 'brand': the circle/globe symbol you see on the bottom left of the front panel of this computer(chose the first example I could find, not an affiliate link, no specific endorsement implied).

I wouldn't expect the result of this reworking to be branded as a 'Galaxy Note' anything; quite possibly have all mention of Samsung scrubbed, bootsplash replaced, etc. but the smartphone market is big and price sensitive(especially 'emerging markets') and Samsung is going to be sitting on hundreds of thousands of perfectly good, high end, logic boards and screens. I wouldn't be at all surprised if the deal requires that whoever ends up reselling them make absolutely no mention of Samsung; but a high end touchscreen and top of the line Qualcomm SoC, assembled and ready to go; are worth so much more as the basis for a rework than as scrap that they'd have to be really, really, touchy to just send them to the grinder.

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