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Comment Not sure how much $$$ (Score 2) 377

I used to work as a SDH/DWDM admin. In early 2000's, while my colleague screwed up a major firmware update on a STM1/4 ADM and I as senior (haha - I was in my 1st half of 20ies) admin had to drive up to site (since the affected node was unresponsive to management system). After many unsuccessful attempts to recover it, at about 3 am. I decided to hard reboot the node, which caused it to boot up from corrupt firmware bank (it had two of those); which in turn just erased all the configuration, including traffic connections (which is built very robust btw). Since the site was on a (relatively small) island and had only 2 ADM's at the time, I more or less cut off the entire communication with mainland. For morning, I had managed to get my colleagues to ferry me another, fully fitted ADM (our last resort backup scenario was to replace entire node) - but as it turned out, it was in a hurry fitted with cards with different firmware (entire network was in middle of upgrade process) which resulted in same kind of useless "brick" I had already at hand. Although it was very cool to fly ~200km/h to port and back in my sporty car, to pick up the spare (not many police on the island and I had a very good excuse). By the afternoon, my higher-up manager had mobilized a helicopter to personally deliver me fully functional ADM, which we promptly replaced and restored configuration from backup. I still have copy of the local newspapers front page, praising how our company heroically saved the day to restore connection with outer world.
At that time I was already able to make up excuses that would have made BOFH proud, which saved my ass.

In-Database R Coming To SQL Server 2016 94

theodp writes: Wondering what kind of things Microsoft might do with its purchase of Revolution Analytics? Over at the Revolutions blog, David Smith announces that in-database R is coming to SQL Server 2016. "With this update," Smith writes, "data scientists will no longer need to extract data from SQL server via ODBC to analyze it with R. Instead, you will be able to take your R code to the data, where it will be run inside a sandbox process within SQL Server itself. This eliminates the time and storage required to move the data, and gives you all the power of R and CRAN packages to apply to your database." It'll no doubt intrigue Data Scientist types, but the devil's in the final details, which Microsoft was still cagey about when it talked-the-not-exactly-glitch-free-talk (starts @57:00) earlier this month at Ignite. So, brush up your R, kids, and you can see how Microsoft walks the in-database-walk when SQL Server 2016 public preview rolls out this summer.

Comment Re:Pimping LEDs (Score 1) 400

Yet LEDs don't really compete with CFLs yet. The article does mention that even a 60W incandescent equivalent is just experimental in LEDs, though CFLs have brightnesses at all levels even far past equivalence to 100W incandescents. Meanwhile, LEDs still generally aren't as efficient as their equivalent brightness CFLs. And LEDs' extra inefficiency puts heat into rooms that then require extra cooling, which consumes more energy.

Do you have any numbers to back your claims?
Considering only lightsource efficacy, LED's have passed CFL quite while ago:

Comment Re:bright, but spendy (Score 1) 225

What are you talking about?
The efficacy of halogen light is about 20lm/W, CFL around 50-70 lm/W
The LEDs, depending of drive current (and make/model) 70-100 lm/W

So there's no way the halogen and CFL are far better than LEDs.
In fact, the LEDs combined with special optics have the huge advantage over the halogen,CFL and high/low pressure sodium lamps because of the precicely controlled light pattern. Conventional luminaries have usually reflector, which directs the light about to right direction, with efficiency of 30-70% .
In streetlights with LEDs it would mean no "hotspots" under the streetlight pole but evenly distributed light where it's needed and no unwanted glare, light pollution and etc. The even distribution means less lumens needed from light source. What matters is the luminaire efficacy.

The 100W LED module from the original article is not very good for applications where the light distribution is crucial because there's no (good) optics for the large array of tightly packed emitters in one package. Similar situation as with gas discharge and fluorescent lamps where the light is not sourced from one point (LED die is usually around 1mm2 in size) but more like area. LEDs, such as Cree XR-E, XP-E and Philips Lumileds Rebel have huge selection of aftermarket optics available for different applications. The efficiency of the optics ranges usually around 80-95%.
Another matter is cooling of the LEDs. The 100W module definitely needs active cooling to dissipate the generated heat in order to maintain the die temperature below 70-80 degree in Celsius. Temperatures above that will damage the phosphorous coating and die which results in rapid degradation of light output.

The reddish light from high pressure lamps is not better for dark environments because of the spectrum. Human eye when adjusted to dark (scotopic vision) is most sensitive to 505nm light which is cyan. The photopic (daylight vision) peak sensitivity is 555nm (green).

Submission + - Intel hardware spying, even with power unplugged!

blucat2 writes: "Check out this one. Intel are now shipping on-board tranceivers on "every piece of silicon that comes out of their factory", a direct quote from the CEO. So now, they can access your PC, modify the hard disk, retrieve information, even when the thing isn't turned on!! They call it AMT, and you can't remove it. You can check it out on Intel's site, there's a few pages and a PDF. Here's a few cut and pastes, as I usually do when I get amazed at how offensive what a company does is.

blucat AT y/intel-amt/index.htm

Discover: Intel AMT stores hardware and software information in non-volatile memory. With built-in manageability, Intel AMT allows IT to discover the assets, even while PCs are powered off. With Intel AMT, remote consoles do not rely on local software agents, helping to avoid accidental data loss.

Heal: The built-in manageability of Intel AMT provides out-of-band management capabilities to allow IT to remotely heal systems after OS failures. Alerting and event logging help IT detect problems quickly to reduce downtime.

Out-of-Band system access Allows remote management of platforms REGARDLESS OF SYSTEM POWER OR OS STATE!


Non-volatile memory stores hardware and software information, so IT staff can discover assets even when end-user systems are powered off, using the OOB channel.

Intel AMT is a hardware- and firmware-based solution connected to the system's auxiliary power plane, providing IT administrators with "any platform state" access."

Submission + - Google censoring has started

An anonymous reader writes: Apparently Google has started censoring content to please the governments where they do business. According to a report from India, a politician pressurized Google to remove content which portrayed her in a bad light. Truth hurts.

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"Card readers? We don't need no stinking card readers." -- Peter da Silva (at the National Academy of Sciencies, 1965, in a particularly vivid fantasy)