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Comment Re:Why is Windows 10 the benchmark? (Score 1) 204

I should add, the evidence of this is plentiful. Anyone remember the days of IDE PIO ? Before IDE DMA and in particular before command and data blocks could be fully buffered by a hardware FIFO in the control, IDE PIO was a complete disaster. It barely worked (and quite often didn't). And we had to pull out the stops as device driver writers to get it work as well as it did (which wasn't very well).

-Matt

Comment Re:Why is Windows 10 the benchmark? (Score 5, Informative) 204

Not quite true A.C. The instructions for those old 8-bit CPUs could be synchronized down to a single clock tick (basically crystal accuracy), thus allowing perfect read and write sampling of I/O directly. We could do direct synthesis and A/D sampling, for example, with no cycle error, as well as synchronize data streams and then burst data with no further handshaking. It is impossible to do that with a modern CPU, so anything which requires crystal-accurate output has to be offloaded to (typically an FPGA).

RTOSs only work up to a point, particularly because modern CPUs have supervisory interrupts (well, Intel at least has the SMI) which throw a wrench into the works. But also because it is literally impossible to count cycles for how long something will take. A modern RTOS works at a much higher level than the RTOSs and is unable to provide the same rock solid guarantees that the 8-bit RTOSs could.

-Matt

Comment Re:model Slashdot response (MS DOS-ickies r.i.p.) (Score 3, Informative) 204

Looks interesting... I've pre-ordered two (both cpu models, 4G) for DragonFlyBSD, we'll get it working on them. Dunno about the SD card, but a PCIe SSD would certainly work. BIOS is usually the sticking point on these types of devices. Our graphics stack isn't quite up to Braswell yet but it might work in frame buffer mode (without accel). We'll see. The rest of it is all standard intel insofar as drivers are concerned.

My network dev says the Gigabit controller is crap :-) (he's very particular). But for a low-end device like this nobody will care.

All the rest of the I/O is basically just pinned out from the Intel cpu. Always fun to remark on specs, but these days specs are mostly just what the cpu chip/chipset supports directly.

I'm amused that some people in other comments are so indignant about the pricing. Back in the day, those of us who hacked on computers (Commodore, Atari, TRS-80, Apple-II, later the Amiga, etc) saved up and spent what would be equivalent to a few thousand dollars (in today's dollars) to purchase our boxes. These days enthusiast devices are *cheap* by comparison. My PET came with 16KB of ram and a tape cassette recorder for storage, and I later expanded it to 32KB and thought it was godly.

-Matt

Comment Re: The U.S. ain't perfect, but... (Score 1) 524

He doesn't appear to understand the meaning of the word free trade because support for free trade were words out of his mouth after talking about implementing tariffs, though

He understands it very well. What he means when he talks about free trade is not free movement of goods or labour (which benefit poor people), it's free movement of capital (which benefits rich people). He wants to clamp down on free movement of goods and labour but continue to allow free movement of capital, because that's good for him.

Comment Re:Neat! (Score 1) 161

Here's the problem: there is far more of a shortage of smart people than of money in medical research. That's okay though, because while $3bn sounds like a lot, it's actually a really tiny amount. I couldn't find the most recent figures, but in 2003 the US alone spent $94.3bn on medical research. That's around $123bn, adjusting for inflation. Even if Zuckerberg spent all of the pledged money in one year, he'd only be promising to increase this amount by just under 2.5%, for a single year. Can you think of a single large project where a 2.5% increase in funding for one year has made a large difference, ever? It sounds like he's actually spending the money over 10 years though, so that's a 0.25% increase in funding. I'm being generous there and only counting the US budget. The EU spends a similar amount, Russia and China both spend a lot, so in total it amounts to well under a 0.1% increase in funding for medical research over 10 years. How much more productive would you be if I offered to pay you 0.1% more over the next 10 years?

Comment Re:People tend to think others will behave as they (Score 3, Insightful) 133

Not necessarily. As the grandparent posted, and I've said many times before, creating is hard, copying is easy. You need a business model where people pay for the creation, not the copying. For example, you release a beta version of the game with most of the game world missing for free, then you ask for funding to finish it. Once you've received enough to cover your development and distribution costs and make a decent profit, you release the game for free. Then you start asking people to contribute to developing the next one.

This sounds weird, but it's actually exactly the business model that many TV shows use. They produce a pilot and send it to the networks for free. The networks watch it and if they like it then they fund the development of the first season. If the first season does well, they start asking the network for money for the second, and so on. The only difference is that you'd ask the customers directly, rather than having a middleman who wants to sell adverts.

Comment Re:Distorted justice (Score 4, Insightful) 133

You don't even have to go that far. If I go into a shop, steal a DVD, and give it to you, the penalty is lower than if I buy the DVD, make a copy, and give that to you. I suspect that part of the reason that people don't take the risk seriously is that it's hard for a moderately sane person to imagine that a court would uphold a penalty for copying an object that's greater than the cost of stealing it.

Comment Re:How to fix that? (Score 1) 186

While five years seems a bit long, that's so streaming and rebroadcast doesn't cut too deeply into the DVD/BluRay sales

Studios used to wait six months between cinema release and DVD sales because they were scared that DVD sales would cut into cinema ticket sales. Now they often do simultaneous releases because they learned that if you don't make content available in the format that people want then they'll pirate it (and now we have large statutory penalties because it's hard to argue actual damages when you're refusing to sell the thing that's been pirated). People won't buy the DVD if they can't stream it, they'll either go without or pirate.

Comment Re:You Really Want To Go Down This Road MS?? (Score 1) 467

Also, take a look at Google's Pixel device or Apple's Mac. Both of those are locked down in similar ways, possibly even more severely.

I'm not sure about the Pixel, but from what I've read it's expected to support dual boot out of the box. Apple Macs come with a tool called Boot Camp that will partition your disk and aid installing MS Windows (it provide drivers for various bits of hardware and installs the required BIOS compatibility optional bits in the UEFI partition for non-EFI-aware operating systems).

Comment Re:The Self Reward Syndrome (Score 1) 210

It is impossible to lose weight if you eat more than you burn, even if all of those calories are "healthy".

That's assuming that 'eat' and 'digest' are equivalent. They're not, and various things affect the efficiency of your digestive system. It's perfectly possible to eat a lot more calories than your body absorbs (though it's not possible to eat fewer unless you learn to photosynthesise).

Comment Re: I claim prior art (Score 2) 201

If you ever visit Apple, go to their cafeteria. Order a pizza. Look at the box: it comes in a custom Apple-designed cardboard box (actually, a very nice design that is smaller than a normal pizza box and stacks better). Look carefully, and you'll see the Apple patent number listed on it. I wanted to take a photograph, but apparently Apple is very strict about people not taking photos anywhere on their campus.

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