697 posts • joined 4 Jul 2008
Re: Wow this new monitor is the coolest
"Somebody sticky taped some c+ syntax on it".
Like an extra "+" symbol, perhaps?
Been there, done that.
Peter Ustinov's identical twin orbitted a black hole for a while in the 1970s.
You're not the first naked engineer to use that story.
Obligatory Dilbert classic:
Tandy sold a tiny 'guitar amp' during the '80s. It was quite sought-after as a distortion unit. Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics loved it.
Re: Good lad!
> Lighten up dude, it was a joke (I'm not aware that any child in the US of A has
> ever had the chair for anything).
Good for two-player Battleships
but not much else. Maybe previewing selfies on the rear-facing camera?
Re: "I think PCs will be effected by those changes and react to the extent that they can."
Why did you put a grocer's apostrophe in PCs?
The chances of anything hitting the Earth
Are ten-million to one they said.
But still they come!
"One of the existential threats to bitcoin."
You keep using that word but I don't think it means what you think it means.
I prefer to keep my money in the bank of Kierkegaard and Nietzsche.
Did Jobs 'give back' to BSD?
Nah, he just consumed the work of egalitarian programmers and built an industry on the back of it, in the same way as any other ruthless capitalist.
Before you downvote me, offer hard facts in response.
Re: A retailer, not an IT company
Thank you for so eloquently articulating my thoughts. Amazon's 'product' is the convenient and competitively-priced purchase and delivery of real-world 'stuff'. Yes, they use cutting-edge software to do that, but the most cost-effective way to utilise that is to reap the benefits of free (as in beer) open source, developed by egalitarian programmers, and then keeping your proprietary, internal enhancements to yourself.
Do you think the richest companies in the world got there by being "nice guys"? Dream on...
At least the Rockefellers, Carnegies and Gates of this world 'gave something back' to the world after years of ruthless business activity. Maybe Bezos will, too. Eventually. If I were in the FOSS world, I wouldn't hold my breath.
Re: Really really basic computers
Don't talk to me about indentation levels in Python. Especially when someone uses an editor with spaces to modify code originally indented with tabs.
A stupid, stupid, stupid design decision.
Like making the assignment operator in C '=' and equivalence '=='. AND making assignments within conditional statements valid syntax!
Like making fall-through the default in switch statements.
Utterly brain-dead decisions that have cost millions of man-hours of debugging time.
Make the C assignment operator ':=' like Pascal. Allow fall-through only if you add 'continue' at the end of the case block. And just fucking introduce braces to Python. It's FAR easier, and visually more obvious.
Re: So fix it!
"Leaving out people with actual mental damage of some sort or another, everyone's pretty well on a par at birth."
Not true. Just...not true. The evidence overwhelmingly supports the 'nature' over 'nurture' argument. It has done for the last 24 years.
"Being really good at something is mostly a matter of doing it, and that's mostly a matter of motivation. Which is why you can, in fact, teach it."
You state this like a truth, but it's bullshit. Do you think someone can wake up one morning and say, "I'm going to write a number one hit single, or paint a masterpiece." Do you think the only thing that stands in their way is 'motivation'? Did you major in Physical Education?
"Art" is the act of connecting "the sublime" with "the mundane" in an understandable format. Please present me with an infallible approach to this, and I will be a very happy man.
Re: Z80 vs 6502?
"How's your dead-flesh keyboard toy?"
1K ZX81 and 48K Speccy still functioning fine.
Re: So fix it!
"The next big waves - robotics, embedded systems, hacker biotech - haven't quite broken yet."
Robotics? The next big wave? Are you sure? Robotics == Motors + Feedback Sensors + Logic. I remember going through a few carwashes during the 1970s.
Embedded systems have been around for at least 35 years. That's my current avenue of employment, and all the 1337 optimisation skillz I learnt during the 8-bit revolution are still just as applicable today. When was the last time you programmed a system with 4KB (yes, KILO BYTES) of RAM? Do you reckon those skills can be offshored to Bangalore? We who came of age during the early '80s were truly blessed. Thank you, Dominic, for this article!
Biotech? I leave that to the Yilané.
Re: You've got to be kidding...
Once it's gone through webcam-quality resolution and frame-rate degradation, I wouldn't be so sure.
@Philip Clarke: FWIW, I got the reference.
"Do you want to sell sugared water for the rest of your life? Or do you want to come with me and change the world?"[
All aboard the Skylark!
Re: Should music be free? Industries work to protect their business model.
"Fortunately, as has almost always been the case, the best music is by unsigned musicians"
Well, the 'best' music is what you like the most, and the 'worst' is what you like the least. There is no objective definition of 'good' or 'bad' music.
In my case, the 'best' music came from those artists who could afford the studio time and a stress-free creative playground that wealth allows. Do you think an album like Dark Side Of The Moon or Abbey Road or Moving Pictures could be made by an unsigned band today? Do you think they could continue to produce such high-quality output by selling T-shirts at gigs where they played lesser 'live interpretations' of the (definitive) recorded article?
The same goes for movies. Could some novice 'unsigned' director create something like "2001: A Space Odyssey" or "A Few Good Men" in their 'spare time' with local amateur actors? Would file-sharing that film be in that director's (or the film industry's) best interests?
Maybe the managers at Pixar should get rid of the existing distribution method and pay all the animators and artists from the 10p contributions that file sharers 'would pay, if push came to shove'. In fact, who actually supports those creative workers in having a decent income while they make their latest 'product' the first time (before digital sharing/copying for free)?
Re: @a cynic writes... Power Cuts
Asda Smart Price value microwave. Two knobs: One is a pot for power (i.e. Mark:Space ratio) and one is a mechanical timer.
No LEDs, no clock, no microprocessor, no PIC, no MIPS SoC, no embedded software.
Re: Analog portabel music
Nope. A high-bitrate MP3 or FLAC derived from a raw PCM master is streets ahead of any crappy combination of lossy, distorted vinyl and cassette reproduction. Remember that.
My first experience of audio recording.
My brother saved a few weeks' of paper round money and bought a budget (might have been Alba) cassette recorder on a Saturday afternoon. We took it back home and set it to 'record' around about tea-time. I can still remember the sounds and conversations as if it was two months ago. It was /very/ weird hearing your own voice on tape (though everyone else sounded 'exactly like they do in real life'). Wish we still had that tape today - what a link to the past!
Re: TDK SA90...
TDK tapes were always my weapon of choice for audio cassette. Funnily enough, TDK video cassettes were crap. JVC tapes made great video recordings (and could be re-recorded many times) back in the day, and still play back with at least 90% fidelity today. Scotch videos were also a bit suspicious, despite their advertising propaganda:
I remember 'Makin Music' magazine and others championed That's audio tapes, but whilst on a par with TDK, they weren't anything special. My band's debut album was recorded on a Fostex X-26 with That's tape. All future recordings used TDK SA-90s (and were /slightly/ better for it). I preferred the Dolby-B of the Fostex to the DB-X of most other brands. A consistent (if slightly higher-level) noise floor suited our musical style better than the dynamic 'pumping' of DB-X.
Used a Denon cassette deck for stereo 'master' mixdown. Very nice machine, with variable bias, choice of Dolby B and C, etc. Gave it to a colleague for free when 100% digital recording at home became affordable (early '00s). No regrets.
Transferred the old cassette multitrack masters to digital in the late '90s and used some pretty impressive software to tart it up for remix and CD-quality release. Amazing results!
How ridiculously fast?
Ludicrous Speed !!!
"there is a major imbalance in this equality."
This is a tech site. It's not an equality if there's an imbalance.
(a == b) // Balanced
(a < b) // Unbalanced
(a > b) // Unbalanced
Perhaps you meant to say "equation" or "inequality".
Re: has your code evolved lately?
Re: Make those bits work harder?
Slight correction: If you used +/- 8 levels of analogue 'intensity', you could store 4 bits. My bad.
Re: Make those bits work harder?
In order to get 16 times the storage capacity, you would have to 'write' and 'read' 65536 discrete bands of 'intensity', not 8.
3-bits-per-cell NAND memory encode 8 bands of voltage to store those three bits. You require 2^n detectable levels to store n bits.
You have some issues. Perhaps you should hire an analyst (or talk to OMM-0910).
People just "got stuff done" under the earliest, crappiest MS operating systems. Get over it. Why is it so important to you that they shouldn't have found productivity?
Word 2.0 ran under W3.11. Possibly the greatest word processor of all time.
Re: Hahhaha, reminds me of the later, "32-bit extensions and a graphical shell" definition...
Shifting 95 right by one bit gives you 47, not 32.
Shifting 98 right by one bit gives you 49, not 32.
Windows 3.x was never an Operating System
MS-DOS required the extensions of Windows 3.x to become a true 32-bit OS. I'm not going to argue that the combination was a GREAT OS, but the combination certainly WAS the first MS 32-bit OS.
Your and idiout.
Amiga OS was the best of all three at the time, with proper pre-emptive multitasking and clever use of custom sound and graphics chips. Any current OS (Linux, Windows or OSX) knocks all early '90s OS into a cocked hat now, of course.
SLC & TLC on the same chip?
Each block in a NAND Flash die can be formatted as either SLC or TLC. The SLC blocks are used for the important stuff like firmware storage and FATs. The TLC-formatted blocks are then used for general user file storage.
Re: ::pops some corn & grabs a beer::
"Given the number of times natural selection has been debunked..."
That'll be the number zero, then?
Re: So much for respecting the religious beliefs of other people.
"Firstly, Jewish, Muslim and Christian worshippers all worship the same God. That's pretty much World Religion 101. Odd how many people totally miss the point."
Allah didn't have a son. The entire Christian faith is based on the belief that Jesus Christ was God made flesh.
The Jewish Messiah has yet to appear. Jesus Christ wasn't it.
These are not mere disagreements over doctrinal details. The three Abrahamic religions are fundamentally and eternally incompatible.
Signing the OSA
You don't have to 'sign' the OSA - you are already subject to it, whether you work for the armed forces, a defence contractor or the local corner shop. All you ever sign is a piece of paper which states that you are aware of this fact.
Re: Eadon's GeeK QuiZ
You Googled the question.
13 clueless downvoters and counting...
What a pity El Reg obfuscates the identities of down- (and up-) voters.
Wait a minute - what happens if I press CTRL-A and paste the original message into Paint, then replace all the white pixels with black?
Re: Here's a playthrough
That actually seemed fairly entertaining. $20-$30 's worth of entertaining at 1982 prices? Not so much...
Good back-of-the-envelope calculation here...
How much land mass would renewables need to power a nation like the UK?
Huhhhuhhuhuhhhuhuhhhuhhuh. He said "wang".
Re: re: AC @16:24
No-one writes jokes in base 13.
Re: Is this sales or shipped?
"My colleague was not impressed when he was without his Samsung for over 3 weeks when it developed a fault"
The thing with any non-iPhone is that you simply pop the SIM out and slot it into another device (like a simple mobile, feature phone, or other Android smartphone) on the same network. We've got about 6 or 7 eligible Orange (sorry, EE) devices kicking around at home which would accept the SIM from a Samsung without skipping a beat.
iPhone of any vintage - not so much of an option...
Re: less pranks, more apps
"I plopped a Puppy disc into into another machine, I was surfing the internet before he had finished booting!".
Puppy Linux is indeed a very quick way to get online and surf the internet. Is that all you do with your computer? Get an iPad or cheap Android tablet instead.
And SeaMonkey Navigator is an even weirder browser than Safari.
Use Windows Hibernate and you'll be back in action in 20 seconds from power-up.
Re: I think we missed the point
Yeah, I feel a wee bit dirty contributing to this thread.
Re: Average salary of Mac vs Windows PC owner?
"Just wondering. I'm no Christian, but I do recall some parable about a rich guy putting a hefty chunk of silver on the plate, and a poor man giving away a few pennies.. everything he owned, basically."
Errrrrmmmm, I think you'll find it was a chick rather than a bloke.
Re: "Protest the funerals"?
> Actually, all New Testament bibles have the line "Treat others as you yourself would be
> treated", and "Blessed are the peacemakers".
So all New Testament bibles ripped-off The Golden Rule. Job's a good 'un! There is a liberal sprinkling of other good advice in the Bible. Seriously, lots of good old-fashioned common sense.
Unfortunately for Jesus (and your apologist approach), there's also a shedload of batshit-crazy Judeo-Christian specific claptrap that makes even the Santa Claus story seem positively plausible by comparison. The Enlightenment happened /despite/ the best efforts of literal, fundamentalist Christianity - as typefied by the WBC - not as a result of it.
There is no excuse for any scientifically-aware adult to buy into the nonsense peddled by a mainstream religion. Theory and experimental data trump dogma every time.
Re: iPads feeling expensive now
"my iPhone 3GS is still going strong after 4+ years and still supported / running the latest OS."
8th June 2009 is 4+ years ago???
Re: This is a decade that will live in history..
"They pretty much own the MP3 player market". There IS no standalone MP3 player market any more. Anyone who wants mobile music players already has one on their laptop, tablet or smartphone (and pretty much any feature phone, too). There is no reason to own a 'Personal Stereo', now. Don't bother coming back with 'sound quality' arguments. Mobile music players are used in noisy urban environments, totally unsuited to audiophile conditions. The new ergonomic Apple earbud thingies don't change a thing.
If you want background music on the go, use your phone and a pair of earbuds. If you want a glorious celebration of the music you love, fire up the hi-fi through speakers whilst chilling on the sofa of your own home.
"it is not entirely unrealistic for Apple to build there own fab"
Yes it is. 110% completely unrealistic. Since when have Apple manufactured /anything/, never mind semiconductors? The other major semi manufacturers are so far ahead, Apple would have to headhunt the talent AND invest serious dollars in a plant before they were even in a position to think about catching up. They need chips NOW.
Beer is nice, but I wouldn't go making tech business forecasts after 10 pints.