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Comment Re:ARMing servers. (Score 1) 18

It would be interesting since AMD cancelled their ARM efforts in the server space.

Really we should use AMD's market success as some sort of indicator? What about their 80x86 failures? Is this the market?

How's that? AMD had failures in the 80x86 market? Well, depends on what you call a failure.. If we just look at the CPU market......

With a few exceptions, I find the AMD x86 processor family a pretty good value for the money. (Your mileage may vary) Yea they tend to run hotter and take more power than the Intel offerings, but they perform well enough in most environments to be viable. They may not do as well in the mobile and Server spaces (due to power consumption being higher at the same processing capacity) but they do manage to soak up part of that market too. In a desktop, AMD is more than adequate and cheaper than similar performing Intel options. Don't get me started in the advantages of AMD over Intel in the overclocking world with their unlocked clock multipliers...

AMD staying afloat in the face of Intel's market share is a pretty amazing feat. It hasn't been easy being the distant second while keeping up the pressure on the #1 player but AMD has kept going for decades. I expect AMD to continue to be the distant second competitor, but being second doesn't mean you are a failure...

Then there is the whole GPU market.... AMD may be less of a player here and I don't recommend their GPU offerings, but that doesn't mean they are a failure here either.

Comment It's funny though... (Score 0) 8

THEY decide what hacks get the money and how much.... I'd like this kind of thing more if it was more of a community decision, where the company puts up some funds in escrow and then some independent evaluation or poll among the user community decides which hacks are worth the most. As it stands, even though Nintendo is asking for help from hackers, they hold all the cards AND the cash.

Nice PR ploy, but until they actually pay up for this "help" I'm choosing not to hack my way any closer to them than twice as far as I can throw a hacked device.

Comment Re:Audio (Score 1) 62

Why is it that after so many years, BT audio still stutters and jumps sometimes?

Two reasons... #1 usually the devices are cheap, underpowered and cannot keep up with blue tooth's overall processing demands and do all the other glitzy things that attracted all the people who where willing to purchase the device.... And #2, Bluetooth is not very robust in it's interference resistance as implemented on most low end devices (see #1).

Comment Re:Here's an idea (Score 1) 166

The labels also invest in talent they hope will make it, spending huge sums on teaching them to play in sync, variations on playing styles, introducing them to different instruments and sounds, fitting songs to bands, practice studios, recording studios, sound engineers, etc etc etc etc. That too all costs money, and most recorded artists probably never make it really worth while, but without that support the real gems are even less likely to make it.

The problem is that from the anecdotal stories that I've heard about the music business, the RIAA and the major labels don't actually do any of that stuff. What I've heard is that most of that is done by the actual artists on their own time and their own dime. That doesn't mean that no label associated with the RIAA ever does that, it's just that none of the stories I've heard mention anything like that. In fact, most go into excruciating detail about how the labels are loathe to give anything at all away. The general story seems to be that they are billed by the music label for anything the label does for them and sometimes for anything the label could have done, even if it didn't. In particular, I remember one band complaining that they were charged a hefty fee because they didn't use the label's recording studio, and that was in addition to the fees they paid to the recording studio of their choice.

Maybe that's standard practice and I have just never heard anyone ever mention it, but I'd like some evidence that it's common for anything other than label organized boy bands.

Comment Re:Here's an idea (Score 2) 166

Labels affiliated with RIAA are already finding your "favorite" bands for you. If I go through your music collection, 99% of it will be music from RIAA affiliated labels (or whatever IFPI affiliated marketing/promotion entity is in your part of the planet).

I think the point was that, while most of our current favourite bands might have be found by the RIAA, we'd still have favourite bands if the RIAA and it's affiliated labels didn't exist. In fact, there are arguments that can be made that we might actually have better music if the RIAA affiliated labels weren't picking our favourite bands for us. They have been accused many times of producing cookie-cutter music and drowning out diversity with conservative musical picks.

Comment This is just a negotiation tactic (Score 1) 166

This is just the RIAA trying to alter the licensing deal in place with U-Tube. Yea, they want a bigger piece of the pie and I don't blame them for asking. However, in all negotiations there comes a point where you have to realize that there are just some bargains that cannot be made or you risk killing the deal and giving up all your gains. RIAA seems to be dangerously close to this point to me.

So, if the RIAA wants to kill one of their golden egg laying geese by overloading U-Tube with license fees, it's their loss. Personally, I don't do much on U-Tube and the few videos I watch don't have RIAA licensed material in them so if they go bust trying to pay the RIAA their fees or actively remove any RIAA licensed material from their service, I won't miss U-Tube much. So if RIAA wants to shoot themselves in the foot, fine by me.

But I dare think that the RIAA is really just in the process of setting up the terms of their next license deal with U-Tube. They are asking for more than they expect to get from U-Tube in what is really just a standard negotiation tactic used in all sorts of situations, from bargaining over a $0.25 price at a garage sale though international trade deals.

Comment Re:I am going to say this just once. (Score 1) 166

That and desperate starving artists who signed really, really bad deals when they were young and unknown that won't let them easily break away from their publisher.

So perhaps the solution to this is to put some limits on what rights an artist can sign away? Sort of like Cali and their refusal to enforce employment non-compete contracts?

Comment Re:Buy Apple. (Score 1) 145

Personally.... I don't agree.

However, it's not about any objection to Apple Watches, but to the idea behind them. Think about what you get with one of these and tell me it's worth what you pay for them. Except for the "coolness" factor, I don't really see where the things a smart watch can do are all that useful.

They tell time: but my analog watch does that, even when I don't have my phone around.

They can buzz and show you text messages or phone calls, but they have to be within Bluetooth range of your phone anyway, so you will have your phone on your person and it can buzz you too. I don't see the advantage of this feature.

I hear you can use your apple watch to originate a text, but for the life of me I cannot imagine it being worth the extra effort to text with an obviously clunky user interface over using that phone in your pocket.

Then there are the "health and Exercise" features like a pedometer to count your steps or monitoring your heart rate, but in both cases doing that kind of sensing is hard so it turns out to be of dubious accuracy and limited application. The pedometer function can be approximated on your phone with almost the same accuracy level, and the heart rate monitor is more of a "it's faster" or "slower" indicator that is of zero clinical use beyond that.

Finally there is the battery life problem. These wrist worn smart devices are of significantly limited size and weight. Doing all the "smart" stuff requires power and power requires batteries that are sizeable and of significant weight. This means that the more stuff your wrist device does, the more often you will have to take it off for a few hours and charge it. My standby analog watch can wind itself when I wear it and only comes off when I bathe or swim (because it's not water proof).

So if you want to have one for the wow isn't that cool factor, knock yourself out. However, some of us are not impressed with gadgets that really don't enhance our lives or serve a useful purpose.

Comment For those that were eagerly awaiting.... (Score 1) 145

Who on earth is eagerly awaiting a Pebble Time 2? Who actually wants a Pebble Time 2?

Apparently not even FitBit wants one...and that's saying something because there is little in the world more useless than a FitBit. We have two Charge HR's in the house and they are not durable and not accurate for their intended use.

Comment Re:Michael Flynn Jr believes it (Score 1) 762

The fact that Congress is so reviled yet stable indicates we're no longer a functioning democracy. We're a plutocracy, where elections are determined by overwhelming advantages in fundraising.

That's the wrong lesson. Most congressional elections are determined by gerrymandering. The point of gerrymandering is to generate certain victories and subvert the will of voters. If you want to control congress, you have to control the state legislatures.

Submission + - NSA's best are 'leaving in big numbers,' insiders say (

schwit1 writes: Low morale at the National Security Agency is causing some of the agency's most talented people to leave in favor of private sector jobs, former NSA Director Keith Alexander told a room full of journalism students, professors and cybersecurity executives Tuesday. The retired general and other insiders say a combination of economic and social factors — including negative press coverage — have played a part.

"I do hear that people are increasingly leaving in large numbers and it is a combination of things that start with [morale] and there's now much more money on the outside," Alexander said. "I am honestly surprised that some of these people in cyber companies make up to seven figures. That's five times what the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff makes. Right? And these are people that are 32 years old."

"Do the math. [The NSA] has great competition," he said.

The rate at which these cyber-tacticians are exiting public service has increased over the last several years and has gotten considerably worse over the last 12 months, multiple former NSA officials and D.C. area-based cybersecurity employers have told CyberScoop in recent weeks.

"Morale has always been an issue at NSA, with roughly 20 percent of the workforce doing 80 percent of the actual work," a former official told CyberScoop on the condition of anonymity. "NSA is a place where people retire in place. At some point watching this behavior even for motivated people becomes highly demotivating."

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