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Comment Microsoft has 'Novell Syndrome'. (Score 1) 144

Look at the 'Shift in Focus' that usually comes with flailing. Novell, Palm, Be (computer internet appliances), "Microsoft Zune/Phones/Bob/We're shifting to services and making everything work like an X-Box".

The OS is now gratis. The software development at MS will soon cost more than any profits they could glean. Thus the new focus on 'Services' aka 'the cloud' and software as a service.

Gandma's computing business making Atari games is dead because the desktop computer is dead. The software service is owned by companies that were doing that 20 years ago (Amazon, Google, Apple).

In total Microsoft is doomed. Any attempt at creating a service business selling apps, music, books, etc. will just end up being another 'Zune'.

Comment The DNS business and System Design are the Problem (Score 1) 92

It's tough for the 'little people' to be heard on equal footing when permanent addresses ( IPV4 / IPV6 ) are controlled by 'registration authorities'.

Everyone should be allowed to automatically take an IPV6 address from the global pool and register it in DNS without having to use your network service providers block of addresses.

Network service providers limit home connections 'upload' speeds to prevent average people from monetizing or serving at 'business speeds' . This means that only large corps who have enough money to buy their own blocks of address space are allowed onto the actual playing field.

The problem is really that of ownership of infrastructure. If people want a freedom internet the infrastructure control needs to be removed from vested interests while improving or equalizing service speeds for the average person. As long as your connection is dependent on a service provider your connection can never really be freedom-ish at all. Your data flows through them.

Comment How to Use This For Fun and Profit (Score 1) 421

Steps to follow:

Wait for all public and government organizations to install programs compiled with this.

1.) make malware that collects the local crash reports and data dumps.

2.) focus attention on crashing commonly used user interface libraries instead of the MS malware

3.) wait until a large number of users have installed your global crash vector.

4.) send signal to turn on crashing globally

5.) direct emails or background FTP of collected crash data through TOR or other obfuscation

6.) sift through the data of world governments at your leisure.

Go get em!

Comment Re:Remember how long Excel sticked to max 64k rows (Score 1) 359

There are people in my office that try to use Excel as a relational database.

There are days when I know Excel is there. I just can't go to work. Then I day dream of launching dead, bloated, stinking, plague infected cows, into the Microsoft campus, using a trebuche. Each with an office 365 licence for Excel glued to their silken, bovine, fur......good times......

There should be a dialog or something that pops up each time Excel opens that says, "This program is for counting. It is a violation of the terms of service to use this application as a database.". Not that anyone reads the shrink wrap.....I'm just bitter now....

The Holsteins outside look nervous. I wonder what they are sensing......storm maybe.... :|

Comment Wood Working (Score 1) 352

Hey, substitution in language works just as well as in math....who knew.

"We fundamentally believe that carpentry is a skill and that just like other skills are required in school, wood-working should be required in school. I do think wood-working and auto-shop are as important-- if not more important -- as the second language that most people learn in today's world. I would go in and make wood-working and chainsaw maintenance requirements, starting at the fourth or fifth grade, and I would build on that year after year after year...I think we're doing our kids a disservice if we're not teaching them and introducing them in that way."

Let's step back a bit from this and try to understand that computers and programming rank about as important in the life's general scheme as a pick and shovel. We all survived for millions of years without them before they arrived. We will probably last longer as a species if we wake up, get off the marketing bandwagon, and remove computers from grade school all together. Why not leave the leaning of chainsaws to people who need chainsaws. Computers are a tool. Unfortunately an inordinate amount of social focus and resource are being diverted to this one thing because people want to sell that.

Apple has a vested interest in selling computers. The computer market is declining because the average person doesn't actually need one. How to market computers? Convince governments that they need to spend your money to teach coding before the 4th grade.

To be clear, any technology focus that kids learn in the 4th or 5th grade will be completely obsolete by the time they reach the end of college. Why not focus on teaching kids how to learn and assess the world for themselves instead of filling their heads with obsolete information?

Comment Which Culture Are We Talking About? (Score 3, Interesting) 264

Historically some cultures had primarily male clerical workers. Up till recently some had primarily female welders. Social context makes difference. Women have not been excluded for lack of capability. The decline is a sign of sociological bias because of where industry manufacturing was located.

Also decline of unskilled labor jobs in manufacturing after the decline of post war government funding of large projects drove more men to clerical (techie) jobs. The jobs were just rebranded to make them palatable to the post world war 2 cohort.

The cold war created the last of the big science jobs funded by government. Many of hose jobs were in research labs and clerical.

What actually happened in North America was grunt jobs disappeared and the grunts began to occupy the clerical space to make a living. This at it's best would reduce the clerical jobs available to women by 50%.

So, it probably wasn't a sexist plot. Just a shift in markets.

Comment BLAS and LAPACK are libraries. (Score 1) 345

BLAS and LAPACK are libraries.

You need to differentiate between the dynamics of a language (ie: FORTRAN vs. C/C++) and the libraries available.

FORTRAN 77 vs. FORTRAN 90/95 and up are completely different species.

So we start talking about eigen systems programming in one language vs. another. Well, when was that library written? In what version of what language? Just because it is a widely available library, does that mean it is any good internally?

Theoretically, if there were a fully C++ written linear algebra (or any other library) that isn't linked with some gawd aweful old FORTRAN code or (asm{ ... }) down in the bowels of the machine, then you could make an honest comparison. But since everyone seems to start off with poor examples from free programming cook books and someones opinion from the web, without seriously (re)designing or understanding the patterns used to accomplish the task, you then get what you get (ie: crap).

After long time programming in FORTRAN 77/90/95/etc. and C, and C++, and many other languages I would have to say that most programming comes down to energy expenditure. If a grad student comes out of school after programming mainly in Matlab the first thing that person is going to suggest for a programming project is going to be Matlab. This same phemomenon is what has kept FORTRAN alive. In the case of FORTRAN , the legacy dependency code of many scientific applications ultimately led to the refactoring of FORTRAN as a language rather than discarding all that code. It amounts to loss aversion and an unwillingness to learn new languages in entrenched users.

Why not create an open scientific co-processor card spec that has hardware advanced functions instead of farting around with GPU discretes that were originally designed for video games. Then we could just have linear algebra calls in the standard math library that are driven by math hardware instead of 50 years of accumulated CPU work-arounds for 8088 code (that was sarcasm).

Progamming always seems be 'VHS instead of BETA' because most programmers doing applied programming for science arrive in industry with only single language skills and programming was only a sideline from whatever thier degree was in.

I also continue run into 'C' programmers who refuse to learn C++ . it's some kind of religion thing. Deities will apparently smite them if they crack a manual.

Comment Statistics and Damnable Lies (Score 1) 255

Has anyone noticed that there are now astronomically more OSS users now? The number of OSS users is also growing at an exponential pace.

What we should expect with those stats is that there should be more cracks and bugs in OSS due to the higher percentage of people programming/using it.

Also, as the value of OSS increases to the market and more information are handled by OSS there is more incentive for old vested interests to search for the downside as a form of marketing. We never heard about all those MS Windows security deficits until years after the fact. Well after they had been exploited by te NSA.

It's interesting that SO FEW bugs have caused issues in OSS considering the sale of that ecosystem.

There is also more incentive for companies protecting turf to pay OSS project insiders to plant exploits as a way to undermine that.

It's better to rely on 'Repairable By Design' than 'Defective by Design' .

Comment Re:PCs Don't Have Decades for Games (Score 1) 296


But aren't they selling an aweful lot of video cards pretty much for bitcoin mining and not gaming?
Bitcoin is about to go flop because the designer of it percieved that the computing world
would stay static, which it logically couldn't. The perception that desktop computers will
always be PC boxes, required by the world, is pretty much the same kind of situational bias.

I am guessing the 65 million number for Steam are a count of people who have logged on to try it
out of curiosity. The daily user numbers indicate actual customers and that count is orders of magnitude smaller.

I am skeptical that the desktop PC market is sustainable for more than 5 more years. Most of the common things
people have historically done with PCs can now be carried around in ones pocket with the cellphone. That leaves
the home gaming, desktop PC, to become a single use device in most households.
Why would anyone bother with that kind of cash outlay for something that sits idle 90% of the time? Nostalgia?

I'm guessing that the consoles will become less expensive as competing Indian and Chinese technologies arrive
on the market. I can't actually believe that Japan and USA will have any corner on the electronics design market
in a short period of time. The US is not training enough new people, has a miniscule proportion of the global population
to draw ideas from and has lost the ability to do anything other than rewrap old tech (ie: the xbox is really just a crippled PC),
and Japan has social demographic issues that will create a shrinking pool of technically skilled people capable of making new
product (hence the new 'Walkman'). An indication of this is that Sony would rather serve games to a gaming thin client.
The Playstation4 is probably the last of that series of devices from Sony.

We also need to remember that handheld devices will keep improving. Nvidia know this, that is why they are now targeting
graphics device designs, specifically to support that platform.

All things told, as nostalgic as I am for the 1970's and 1980's computer era, the desktop PC is so over it's not even funny.
No amount of wishing will make the PC come back because the public now know what the PC will (and will not) do
and are moving on to more generally useful tools.

Comment PCs Don't Have Decades for Games (Score 1) 296

Isn't the desktop PC market actually declining?
The reality is that most people never needed a desktop PC and can get by without one just fine.

Home PCs are now only for old people who are used to that sort of thing.

The desktop workstation wil become a specialty item used for science,
and engineering. The rest of the population will be using thin clients on
remote apps, or smaller, more ergonomically suitable, portable devices.

It's difficult to believe that desktoip PC gaming actually has 'decades' to survive.
I'm questiong the business plan here....

Comment They really are tasty compared to the alternative (Score 1) 325


I'm no monster. The last ice age had most of the worlds water up on land.
The majority of northern atlantic humans survived by hanging around the intertidal zones eating
seals and sea-veggies.

A super volcano would cause another ice age.
The resulting die-off would reduce the human population to levels
where eating seals would no longer be a hardship on the environment.

Living in a cave underground is a near certain path to starvation.
Seals are a good, practical, food with a strong ice-age-nutrition track record.

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