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Comment Re:Wanting what you cannot have (Score 1) 211

The developers could never quite get far enough before management mandated a strategic rewrite of some sort. First it was a rewrite to use qt which nokia had just purchased, hoping to save symbian by having a fat application library that would run on both low-end symbian and high-end maemo. (previously maemo was based on gtk). Then it was the merge with intel's moblin to form meego, with new packaging formats and new networking later and new gui stuff... and then it was the total switch to WP7. Finishing and polishing the project before the next mood swing from management proved impossible it seems

Comment Re:Translate the ratios to percentages (Score 1) 468

If "Search for suitable plugin?" is "too geeky" then they're pathetic. Why is the objective of these desktop environments seem to be to require absolutely no knowledge or training? I think it's a fools errand - it's just not going to work. The "walled garden" of the iPad (akin to a "supervised living facility" for the elderly) is all these people can really handle. Don't worry, they'll be happy there.

Comment Re:Same old bottleneck (Score 1) 533

Antivirus is really the killer. A windows computer with a top of the line SSD, with antivirus, is about as snappy accessing the disk as a windows computer without an ssd and without antivirus, which is pretty sad if that ssd is 20 to 100 times faster than the rotating hard drive at various workloads (my experience with an intel g2 160gb ssd).

The other thing is IO scheduling. Process / thread scheduling has come a long way, but IO scheduling not so much... it's not even really fully addressed in linux, they're still working on different strategies for charging different groups of processes for the IO they caused, and strategies for allocating or prioritising IO... there's some stuff linux can do about it now, but you would only bother to set it up and tweak it if you were managing google's servers or something...

Comment Re:They deserved it (Score 1) 669

the problem is this:

if someone says, "my teacher killed a student and buried her in his backyard", the typical response is something like, "wow, you really don't like your teacher huh"

if someone accuses the teacher of child molestation, for some reason it can't be treated with the same due skepticism

I consider it a societal problem

Comment Re:Hyperviser (Score 1) 500

The knowledge they have gained about the CLI interaction is probably specific to that CLI only (how many different ways in different CLIs do you know of to trigger a page down ?)

Funny you should ask - there's this funny key on the keyboard with "Page Down" written on it, and it virtually always works, even in "vi" and "less". There's also a down arrow key, which also virtually always works, even in "vi" and "less".

I think the parent's point was that a scrollbar on the screen is not necessarily more intuitive than an up and down arrow key on the keyboard, with his evidence being that these sorts of novice users who everyone seems so desperate to cater to and empower can't figure out the graphical scrollbar, even though it's used in every graphical application, even when shown how to use it. They're going to have to learn something, and it might as well be the more efficient CLI.

Comment Re:It sucks I agree (Score 1) 472

I can relate to the grand-parent poster... the issue isn't about how much it's swapping when it can choose whether to swap or not, it's about what happens when you do run out of ram.

This happened to me when I tried to convert an svg of a microchip design to a png using inkscape (generated from a cadence export with millions of rectangles). When linux really runs out of memory and begins running things off of a gig of swap on a rotational disk, you have serious problems. It took 30 minutes for me to open a terminal and kill it.

Amusingly enough, the execution slows down so much that it can take hours for the runaway process to finally exhaust all of swap as well, and finally trigger the OOM, and until then the entire computer is useless. This is what motivates people to get rid of their swap partition, so the OOM will kill a runaway process when it happens, instead of after your computer has been frozen for a couple of hours.

I've heard that havings some swap makes the vm happier under normal circumstances, so I use a 256 MB swap partition.

Comment Re:Your math is wrong, or you are a driving hazard (Score 1) 206

I suppose I shouldn't mention that I once drove 3,100 miles from Delaware to California in 3 days, on my own... start one morning, drive through the day and night and next day, take a 10 hour nap at a motel the second night, finish it in another 12 hours. It was a "well crap, it's going to suck, let's get it over with all at once" sort of thing. Nevertheless, it happens ;)

Comment Re:Let the cyberwarfare begin. (Score 1) 247

If you're not tripping over yourself trying to make it "easy" for the "common user", then making computer systems very secure is not too difficult or expensive. Further, everyone should already be doing it anyway! It's not like governments have the only active hackers on the internet.

I would hope that official hacking threats would help change the "get the hacker" mentality back to "fix the vulnerability" or even better, "use more secure software from the outset".

Comment Re:!News (Score 1) 320

Please god, no.

We have things called operating systems. They can run multiple applications reliably, securely, and fast (well, those not made by microsoft), and they can be extended by anyone with new applications without getting any permission. I could go on but you get what I mean.

Every time I have to use adobe flash or acrobat reader, I get very very angry. These are horribly made applications! With no 64 bit versions for linux systems which otherwise have had no need for 32 bit support for 5 years! Which infect windows systems with background updating services and a reliably horrific stream of security vulnerabilities, and the worst performance available! Luckily, excellent alternatives to acrobat are readily available for use with proper PDFs on all operating systems.

I don't want computers to "do everything in one go". And the people who do are already getting their asses handed to them by malware and hackers on a daily basis, while running antivirus and a plethora of independent updaters which renders their super-fast system no better than one 8 years old. Frankly, they're going to need to use Acrobat as their new operating system if they want the next decade's computers to run as slowly and unreliably as current ones.

Comment Re:Is there a sandbox for sandbox? (Score 1) 95

uh... are you referring to threads? I mean, when you say the MMU could trivially enforce something... in all modern operating systems, the MMU already forces complete separation of all processes, and any interaction between them is through system calls to the kernel (or shared memory, which is set up by system calls...).

My point is, one way or the other, the OS has to decide what processes are allowed to make what system calls (with what arguments). Operating systems already have mechanisms that allow parent processes to drop some privileges for their child processes.

I would agree, however, that these mechanisms could probably be improved, expecially with regards to dropping some privileges for some threads, which might be impractical because those threads can always mess with the memory of more privileged threads...

Comment Re:No one can stop the x86 train, not even Intel. (Score 1) 227

I have to disagree about address space. OS kernels tend to use a large chunk of it; on windows xp 32 bit, only 2GiB are left for the application's address space, unless you set a boot-time flag which changes the split so applications get 3GiB. Some video games which were not "large address space aware" hit the vm ceiling after a while (on super high settings) on windows xp 32 bit (and thus crashed), as long as two years ago.

I agree that no well made program should use so much address space, but the way technology progresses, I can't agree that a 4GiB address space is enough for even the short term. When you factor in things like ASLR, bounce buffers in the linux kernel... 4GiB works, but it's getting really old really fast. Kinda like ipv4 I guess...

Comment Re:Interesting (Score 1) 389

I'm pretty much the same thing and do pretty much the same thing.

But I have to disagree about updates, I think you should generally apply them ASAP, otherwise it becomes too easy / likely that some service (most of which I disable, but anyway) or tool enables your box to be remotely and automatically compromised, without you manually running anything.

So, the above, but with updates, and your chances of having your system or accounts compromised is more than close enough to zero. In my opinion and experience.

Comment Re:windows only (Score 1) 85

So, I'm only getting to reading this some days late, but...
flightgear was updated to 2.0 in the archlinux repositories on the same day you made this comment:

Personally I don't mind that linux doesn't "move forward" quite the same way windows and mac does. On linux, I can get whatever I want right now, or if I don't care that much I can wait a while and get it automatically. On windows and mac, I can't really get exactly what I want either way. Well I guess I could, but hacking closed-source and non-configurable binaries is way more work than I want to get into (with props to vlite / nlite / osx86 project).

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