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Comment Re:You may be looking in the wrong place (Score 1) 537

I'm not surprised that you''re befuddled, since you seem to not see the difference between storing data and doing data analysis.

The data sets is in tens of PB, so SSD is way out for cost reasons. But that doesn't matter much, since a small cheap server with 16 7k2 rpm drives can saturate 10Gbit/s networking, in real life use with the storage software written in Java (this position). And we need lots of these servers to make the volume up, so the aggregate bandwidth is pretty large.

The analysis software is up to my users, the LHC experiments, and is mostly C++, but with parts in python and probably some fortran libraries too.

Comment Re:You may be looking in the wrong place (Score 2) 537

Exactly! This is why I work as a sysadmin to support science, instead of working as a sysadmin to support profit or entertainment. I've had to make this call a couple of times in my career, and so far I've chosen to stay on the side that improves the world. Not always an easy choice though, given the incentives of the short term profit side.

You don't even need an academic career to do this either, there is plenty of us that have trouble recruiting competent programmers or sysadmins because the pay isn't as good. Which, I guess, tells us a bit of the priorities of society as seen by rewards structure, where making mobile games and banking is considered more important than making the world a better place.

PS, I'm right now looking for an excellent java developer working on free software that enables storage for huge data science, like the LHC experiments. This is the kind of role that is part of the infrastructure needed to make science happen these days:

Comment Re:100% EU access or your money back! (Score 1) 315

Yes, and if the UK rejects freedom of movement, a) Japan won't be happy as per the document referenced above and b) I'm not sure the UK can hope for a better deal than tariff-free exchange of goods. Certainly there will be countries going "well, if Polish plumbers can't sell their services in Manchester, UK banks will have to open EU offices to sell financial services to Berlin". And this still wouldn't be "punishment", but grounds for a fair deal, IMO.

And yes, I know that May has rejected freedom of movement. But she has also rejected border checks between Ireland and Northern Ireland, so apparently there will be free movement of people through that border?

Also, yes, Spain is a bit strange, unemployment is very unevenly distributed. But that's a topic for another thread, I think. :)

Comment Re:100% EU access or your money back! (Score 1) 315

i think all EU countries would welcome a "Norwegian" deal where all four freedoms (including movement of people) are in, and the UK keeps implementing laws and paying without having a vote in new legislation. That's basically what Japan is asking for too. And I very much think they could get it, if they want it. But that would mean accepting free movement of people, and not "taking back control".

The thing is, no one knows what the UK wants. The political leadership is down to "brainstorming" to figure out what to fill the blank page with, under the heading "Brexit means Brexit". I mean, you hear PM May say in the same week that there will be strong immigration controls, but also no border checks between Ireland and Northern Ireland. WTF? The only way I can put those two together is by handing Northern Ireland over to independence within the EU or as a part of Ireland...

And until a clear path is in place, if I was Nissan, I'd not lose time "diversifying" the supply of cars to the EU by opening a second factory in Spain or Poland or Finland or so. All this uncertainty means you have to assume that the worst case could happen...

Comment Re:containment (Score 1) 296

Yeah, not so much for permeation, maybe, but they still quote this as one of the things that help. Could maybe do some for actual leaks - but getting air in would be sad too. The big reason for lower pressure is the lower resistance though - I like paying less in power&cooling thanks to lower power use to keep the platters spinning.

Comment Re:containment (Score 4, Informative) 296

Clever materials choices and lower pressure than on the outside (~40% IIRC). Luckily leakage is easily measured in the product design and testing phase, as well as ongoing QA. So not nearly as much risk to your data as stupid firmware bugs that only turn up under some circumstances after lots of usage. And no, they won't be refillable.

Comment Re: x.509 WTF? (Score 1, Insightful) 110

Of course attacking SSL on the protocol level is by far more useful, since you can just silently sit there and eat all the "secret" data, instead of having to actively MITM particular connections.

But do you really think there is a single US CA out there that would say no to a national security letter requiring them to issue a certificate if they actually needed it? Especially given how Joseph Nacchio was treated for resisting voluntary assistance to the NSA? Or that the Chinese ones wouldn't issue whatever was asked if the Ministry of Public Security turned up and wanted some certificates?

Stuxnet actually proves another part of why the CA system is utterly broken. Because they just had to break in *somewhere* in order to get a key signed by *any* CA in order to sign their stuff. To impersonate Tor developers, they'd have to steal the Tor developers keys, or make up new ones that looks plausable enough. Unlike the X.509 CA system where any attacker might just as well steal the keys of any random project and they'd be just as acceptable since they are signed by a CA.

But you're right, that it isn't a CA-level compromise, unlike DigiNotar who shows that particular line of attack. And were only found out by widespread intercerption of Iranian connections to Gmail.

Comment x.509 WTF? (Score 4, Insightful) 110

The CA model for X.509 certificates has been shown to be utterly broken for protection against intellengence agencies, they clearly have both access to some of the private keys of "trusted" CAs as well as the leverage to have "trusted" CAs issue arbitrary certificates in their home jurisdiction. There is no way in which this would get better by switching to X.509 compared to PGP.

We have already have plenty of malware with valid signatures backed by trusted CAs using stolen keys etc, check stuxnet/duqu for instance.

Now, I know it can be hard to bootstrap a PGP web of trust, and there is certainly plenty of work to be done there to make it easier and user friendlier. But chucking out the one piece of actually working low-level technology for real security in favour of one that is utterly broken, and has been shown to be broken for years, is just plain stupid.

Comment Re:Nice concept (Score 2, Informative) 262

The main benefit is that it runs faster. 64-bit pointers take up twice the space in caches, and especially L1 cache is very space-limited. Loading and storing them also takes twice the bandwidth to main memory.

So for code with lots of complex data types (as opposed to big arrays of floating point data), that still has to run fast, it makes sense. I imagine the Linux kernel developers No1 benchmark of compiling the kernel would run noticably faster with gcc in x32.

The downside is that you need a proper fully functional multi-arch system like is slowly getting adopted by Debian in order to handle multiple ABIs. And then you get into iffy things on if you want the faster /usr/bin/perl or one that can handle 6-gig lists efficiently...

Comment Re:Whoever extracts elements first wins. (Score 1) 58

Gernalized way? Not likely. But in this particular setting (electronic scrap), there is plenty of activity. I know these because they make the local news: - but there are several competitors to them too. Lots of copper and gold and other metals in electronics that is commercially recyclable given that someone sorts it out and throws the electronics in containers with just electronics.

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