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Comment Re: A question (from someone witout a credit card) (Score 1) 135

There are plenty of options. Other point systems and even cash back. Some are 1-1.5% cash back. Depending on your situation and spending habits that's pretty much the equivalent range the points system provide... maybe up to 2% return on spending.

Many of these cards belong to business expenses such as hotel nights, dining points, and travel points. The benefits are gathered by business expenses and used for personal benefits. Outside that, unless you are a well planning spender the points systems are mainly a gimmick. Same with cash back but less so.

Most cards have no maintenance fees if paid off monthly. But all charge a lot if you carry a loan/balance.

Comment Re: Amazon envisions... (Score 5, Insightful) 147

Government does not create wealth, but it uses force to extract it from people that create wealth.

And then your post fell to the same level as the one you responded to.

So NASA creates no net wealth? How about research in medicine which is mostly funded by government? How about major loans that are almost fully backed by the government? How about police officers keeping an area safe for commerce? Or the military keeping shipping lanes safe?

The list goes on... There is a lot of stuff that capilitism just doesn't approach at all to create wealth because of the amount of invest involved, even if very low on risk.

Comment Re: 1PB meh (Score 1) 150

I remember back in 2002 reading about a 2PB DB2 at some research university. My google-fu isn't good enough to hunt it down.

But I hope the below provides some insight to where DB2 is at today. 500,000PB. I need to do more research because I am finding it hard to believe.

Anyway DB2 has always been more hardware limited than software. Every atom in DB2 can be plumped up in bits till it hits the hardware limits; multiplying its overall capacity. But too many bits and you are just wasting space.

Comment Re:1PB meh (Score 1) 150

s/column size/field size

Not to sound pedantic on the terms you used, but want to make sure we don't confuse general readers.

Initially, you should be Normalizing your data population. This is splitting it up into various tables. 25 isn't a lot of tables. I have seen DBs under 1TB with over 100 tables. How and what level you normalize is based on the type of data you have, their relationships, and most importantly, how you intend to utilize and extract the data to generate various kinds of information; now and hopefully for the foreseeable future. Ideally, you spend a lot of time designing and very little time implementing & redesigning (please ignore the real world for this post). Normalizing has nothing to do with the size or quantity of data; only quality and usage.

After you Normalize, you setup various indexes. The type you setup and on what columns is based on how much/often you intend to query the data, utilize it, and the information you want to generate from it. I normally set up indexes well after defining my queries. Joining properly indexed tables is not an expensive operation. Most data is either text or blobs. Indexes basically convert these to single number comparisons at the cost of an additional memory address lookup. Ignoring the write performance hit, this is a huge boost for joining and retrieving rows.

Writing is also pretty good. You write to the tables you want to; no need to join the universe to update/add rows for one or two columns. Additionally, the only type of data that should be in your tables are the ones you need to manipulate, update, or look through. If you just want to get back a full book, picture, or LoC, offload that to a DFS and store the reference.

With an unlimited number of tables, rows, and indexes at your disposal, Postgresql can easily store a Petabyte of data in the database.

But lets assume that the use case requires us to look through a Petabyte of data; all sitting in ONE table. You may want to see the title, and page number where your name appears in a few hundred Library of Congresses. In which case, you would shard the Postgresql DB. Sharding is for managing size or quantity of data.

This is a 3rd party add on; not part of the vanilla Postgresql. You don't _join_ tables that are sharded. You don't even define the shards themselves. They are managed by the tool and are hidden from the querying client. The client doesn't know which tables are sharded and which aren't. And yes, the connections, cursors, queriers, subqueries, joins, and query components are load balanced across the shards. Yes, shards are fault tolerant. Yes, they are redundant. Yes, they allow fail/cascade over.

In this situation, the capacity of the database is limited by the number of physical nodes (hardware) that you add to the collective (I am sure there is _some_ limit). From a client's view point, it looks like a single machine returning a single stream of data from a single instance of tables. Oracle has a similar solution. You might be thinking that I am almost describing Hadoop.

But the true kings of the big data world are DB2 and TeraData. DB2 is designed from the ground up as a set of redundant components that unify to a singular system. TeraData is in terms of fully functional nodes that work together as a singular system. And both are decades old with their feature sets.

I DO agree with you thou. There are many use cases that warrant Hadoop over the above.

Comment Re:Something less dismissive? (Score 1) 150

Nothing against Hadoop. Every problem has a proper solution provided by a proper tool.

But petabytes isn't exactly reaching limits of Oracle or Postgresql. You start having to tune these guys & properly setting up the hardware once they get near terabytes, but I think even a vanilla Postgresql will do 1-2 Petabytes.

Now crossing 10 Petabytes... I think it makes more sense to use Teradata. Its decades old and I don't think anything really comes close to it in today's world. Even at 1+ Petabytes, I feel more comfortable with it than Oracle or Postgresql. The later two aren't exactly trying to fit into this domain space. But then again, if you are actually utilizing more than 10 Petabytes of data... you are doing something wrong.

And I don't think Hadoop is trying to fit into the 10+ Petabyte world either.

Comment Re: Uhm... (Score 5, Insightful) 566

Are you serious?!? Republicans have been bitching and moaning and wasting tax payer money on the topic for SIX years!!!

In the end, they have control over both houses in congress, full control of the executive branch, and a weakened judicial....

And the BEST they could come up with was a plan that they weren't even confident enough to bring up to their OWN party after multiple delays and negotiations.

Their next plan is a "wait and see"?! Just how absolutely incompetent does the US governing bodies have to be before the US public atleast stops coming up with excuses for them?

Comment Ask Slashdot - Why are Cities more Expense? (Score 1) 207

Now, I understand WHY a city is more expensive. Because stuff costs more, because there is more tax, more demand for less space, etc etc etc. But WHY are these underlying services more expensive?

Sure, there are more people to service and a few more services (pedestrian crossing signals) but there are a lot more people who pay for them. And many don't even live in the city but spend money there!

So the land has more demand. But why can't we go vertical as needed? Most cities have less than 10 buildings over 20 floors.

There are a lot more customers to provide for revenues. More economies of scale, should be cheaper.

How is it that cabling/piping/ducting a building is more expensive than across 25 acres of a suburban neighborhood? Cities may have public transit, but less roads to maintain, less area to cleanup, less trash pickup points, etc.

What am I missing?

Comment Re: I know that I'm atypical here... (Score 1) 395

I felt there was nothing really memorable about the character Batman or Bruce Wayne in Dark Knight. The entire movie rode on the brilliance of the Joker character. 2 Face was also well introduced and developed but was mostly overshadowed by the Joker. Should have been a separate movie. Ras al Ghul should have been in a later movie but very well plugged in for defining the Batman.

In all, Batman came off as a rich boy with many toys, overly attached to the city/Harvey, too gulliable, and was always 1-2 steps behind his foes. All his actions and decisions were reactive. This is perfectly fine for a Batman in the making or maturing; which is why these movies were awesome (I haven't seen Rises). But far from the fully grown, calculating, pessimistic, plans within plans, physically sacrificing, get it done anyway possible - Batman.

Comment Re:I know that I'm atypical here... (Score 1) 395

Same here. I quite enjoyed the movie. It did a better job showing a calculating dark batman and a morally struggling superman of the old days (like WWII) than any movie in the past 2 decades. Not an amazing movie with WW, Lois, and Luther being flat plug in characters; but good enough overall.

Having said that, the director needs to grow up. If RT is having that much of an impact on Hollywood, then that points to more about how little faith people have of professional movie critics. These days, I think pretty much everyone has gotten on to the game that Critics & Awards are just a different department within Hollywood Inc. There is no trust, nor is one worked on to built up. Critics & Awards used to have prestige and a "trusted" name or brand. Now they are ignored by everyone outside Hollywood Inc. Same is happening in the Gaming industry.

And if RT is hurting sales, GREAT, maybe just maybe we will start getting some good movies rather than reruns. More likely, Hollywood will get rid of critics to save money, game RT, and/or whine like the above.

Comment Re: Could be big in Fintech (Score 1) 42

I am not sure... seems centralizing/clustering the system into many parts is opposite the concept of a open network where all participates vote on the validity of all transactions. They might have a way to keep votes localized for segregated transactions and then have the results accepted as valid by the rest of the system but still seems like a vector to create inconsistencies and disputes.

At that point you might as well get rid of the complexity of segregation/sharding and go with a central trusted authority or core members... like a Senate. Now you are just one step away from a traditional accounting ledger or... our current ACH system.

Comment Well... it's google (Score 5, Insightful) 64

Honestly, it's something we have come to expect of Google. They take a fail cheap fail fast approach to everything. So they try a lot of different stuff but also cancel almost everything. It's a good strategy as far as staying innovative and profitable.

But from a customer dependability view point Google has earned being at the bottom. You really can't build on top of google services and stick around. Eventually they will shell it and you will lose everything. This culture of theirs also makes it hard for enterprises to take them seriously. We are looking at Chromebooks and there are all these corner cases that Google has just never really thought about. They never built the services with an enterprise mindset. They just don't seem to know what a standard enterprise's needs are. Similarly they don't seem to understand the user's need for dependable and predictable services either.

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