1648 posts • joined Wednesday 10th June 2009 14:47 GMT
Not so much as O/S launch
... more a bootable and long overdue service pack for XP. And somehow MS have managed to persuade a few people to pay for it. In that respect it's newsworthy enough. However an operating system (whatever it's called - or who makes it) is not that big a deal. So long as it "just works" and lets people get on with their work, or play, without sticking it's oar in I can't see any reason why anyone would want to get worked up about it.
Now, if it was to provide something radically new: an application that no-one had seen before, yet somehow everybody needed, or a brand new interface that no-one else had (such as a driect brain interface that worked) *THEN* it would be worth getting interested. As it is, it's just a new engine in an old car body. Meh.
Supplier says vendors will sell it's products !!!!!
In a shock announcement, a software supplier said that it expects vendors to sell it's latest product. And with christmas coming up - it expects them to sell a lot of it.
This will be particularly true of new, low-cost products which (due to their low cost and the recession) have proved terribly popular recently.
Breathes a sigh of relief
That sounds like the best solution for us, citizens. Given EDS's past record we can go about our online business safe in the knowledge that the gummint won't have a scooby what's going on.
We're all criminals now
There's an old adage among doctors (particularly ones who have private practices) that there's no such thing as a "well" patient: only one's who haven't been examined in sufficient detail to reveal all their illnesses.
It seems like the police are taking the same view - that's no-one's innocent (or fully reformed), it's just that they haven't probed deep enough, or far enough back to reveal all our past indiscretions. Now, while that may be a valid basis for a religion, it's no way to run a country. Especially if this presumption of guilt translates into the way the police treat everybody with an air of scorn, superiority and as a potential threat, (For example the recent guy who's front door was smashed down in a police raid - simply because he had air-conditioning: a sure tell-tale of a cannabis factory according to the police. Even worse: their refusal to accept liability for the damage they caused), against which they can commit any outrage with impunity.
No wonder the average member of the public has gone from an innate trust in the "local bobby" to going to great lengths to avoid having anything to do with the police - individually or as a whole. Even being the victim of an attempted burglary is enough to get your dabs and DNA on the police database: for matching against any unsolved past crime and anything that pops up in the future, making everyone who has any dealing at all with the fuzz into an automatic suspect.
Doesn't recognise a sales opportunity
> stood at the Crem like a lemon, wondering why on earth I am present
I have to say I don't have much experience of funerals (what with still being alive, 'n' all) but it seems to me that for most people, the funeral is about the people who are still living - not the guy in the box. If this priest hasn't realised that in all the funerals he's done, I think he's missed the point of a lot of them.
So far as why he's present, I'd hazard a guess that a lot of people think of him as a sort of "lucky mascot" or part of the occasion: just like a flash car, patronising sermon and drunk relatives are part of a wedding ceremony.
At funerals, people also tend to get a bit reflective - thinking about their own mortality. If that isn't the prime time to put in a word for god, then I don't know what is. Maybe he should start asking himself if he's actually in the right job, as there doesn't seem to be much in the way of evangelical enthusiasm here, just a rather grumpy-sounding guy having a moan about the world not running in the way he thinks it ought to.
 using the gender-neutral meaning of "guy" here
Not fat, just not tall enough
BMI has 2 dependencies, weight and height. If people have a certain weight then all they have to do to achieve any given BMI figure is to adjust their height accordingly.So the simple (and no doubt politically correct) answer would be to provide elastic tape measures.Then they can adjust the stretchiness of the tape to return whatever height they'd need to be in order to have a healthy BMI
After all, if governments can massage official figures to suit their needs and accountants can be creative with their P&Ls why shouldn't people be allowed to have any height they choose?
doesn't change anything
The basic facts still stand. The outfit didn't have a backup that they could restore. It doesn't matter who's hardware or database server was being used. the original, unforgivable sin was to not have a backup. If you have a secondary server that is mirroring the first, it will get exactly the same updates as the primary and will therefore execute the same DELETE, DROP, ALTER and other destructive commands that the primary is fed. That's not a backup.
From the job advertisement, it sounds like they already knew their architecture wasn't very high quality (which no doubt will be explored fully in any legal case), which makes the lack of a backup even more negligent.
pay by results?
Personally I'd be happy to pay for the Met. Office (well, my portion of the costs, that it) is only they'd GET IT RIGHT. I don't just mean predicting nice weather in the summer - which they got wrong, but even having a 3 day forecast that was good enough to rely on. Hell, even being able to predict tomorrow's weather would be a start. E.g. their prediction yesterday for where I am was that it would be a nice day - sunny even. Well, wrong! Cloudy with rain is what we're getting, although they have at least altered their forecast to reflect what the weather actually is. I suppose it's marginally less effort than looking out the window but far less reliable.
The thing is, there are online forecasters who are just as accurate as the Met. Office but don't cost me a penny to use.
not much use for bursty workloads
Here's the thing. In the real world you don't get customer facing systems that run a flat workload. The amount of work they are required to do varies over time. So f'r instance, all those online shops might have very few transactions to process while Corrie is on, but as soon as the ad.s start people make a dive for their 'pooters and start buying stuff (in response to the advertisements, telling them to do so?).
So, if you've implemented your online sales system with a FAWN array - and it's working flat out, where does the extra capacity to cope with your peak loads come from? Answer: the punters have to wait. And and we know, waiting punters tend to go elsewhere.
So while it makes for a nice green headline: that these low powered processors are working flat out and delivering lots of work per unit energy, it means they have no flexibility when a surge happens. A bit like saying that the M25 averages 20,000 vehicles per hour, so we only need 2 lanes. Without designing it to cope with rush (hah!) hours or bank holiday traffic.
Now, if you REALLY want to improve the useful-work-per-Joule rating of a computer, why not take a look at that major source of bloat and inefficiency: the operating system?
internet passports? because real ones work so well
They say that a question well asked is half answered. It seems to me that so far no-one has actually framed the right question. Yes, we all agree that in abstract terms the internet (or more properly, it's users) could do with more security - but security from what? from each other, from the baddies, from their governments - or other country's governments - or who?
You also can't have it both ways: security for "good" people also provides "bad" people with the ability to conduct their badness, for want of a better term, unfettered. You can't say "these people are good, worthy citizens - we won't surveil them, but these other people (the ones with the forged internet passports) are bad - we need to keep a close eye on them." Likewise, having an internet passport won't act as a safety blanket and protect it's owner from viruses, worms or even their own stupidity: just like having a real passport (or even a medal from the queen) doesn't stop people trying to break into your house.
When it boils down to it, all I can think this guy wants is for more people to buy his security products. Well ... no thanks.
advertising, then porn, then censorship, then pirating other people's memories (reading can't be much harder than writing), then copyright protection, then circumvention, then virtual memories, and finally someone will discover "reality".
I just wonder what the first virus will do?
> there's "relation" between frequent video game playing and ADD. That ought to get them media hacks riled up.
... they won't stay "riled up" for long, before they've forgotten all about it and found something else to occupy themselves with for another 5 minutes.
@yes they do
> people tend to resort to self fix / colleague fix ...
One thing that teachers have to contend with is the realisation that a proportion of children in any one class will be more intelligent than they are. That's just a statistical fact. They also have to come to terms with a lot of kids will know more about subjects that a particular teachers _isn't_ teaching them, than they do. F'r instance, it's a fair bet that a class full of 14 year-olds will know more about science than their art teacher does (at least, the ones taking science will).
So it is with desktop support. An IT dept. should at least be aware of the possibility that some of their users do actually know as much about PCs and _their_ PC in particular as the IT dept. does. Whether that's from a previous job, self-improvement, learning from their kids, or just a 5 minute surf on the 'net doesn't matter. Just assuming that IT is always right and (l)users are always wrong is arrogant and incorrect. Maybe there's scope for the IT dept to learn some things from their users, too.
The man's right
Size matters. It doesn't just matter - it's crucial.
Let's face it, the major step is to go from NOT carrying a portable around, to carrying one. After that minor issues like does it weigh 2kg or 3kg or is it a few cm. longer/wider/fatter don't make that much difference: you're still carrying one more thing. Once you start carrying, it makes sense to pack in as many features as possible - with the hope that you can then dump one of the other toys you habitually lug around. So far that hasn't happened as a lappy takes sooooooooo long to boot up and is liable to catch fire if you have it powered up while in it's padded bag.. Get it down to sub-second (like my PDA with the O/S in firmware and nice small, pert applications) and you're on the right road. Have a micro-power mode for phoning, and MP3-ing and you're most of the way there.
This thing about screen size is also what makes me laugh, and cry, about "smart" phones. Look! the new WHIZZY 500, with it's massive 3 inch screen!!! Huh? Has someone redefined the inch to be about 15cm? Until phones and all the other trinkets get away fromt he "massive", postage stamp sized peep-holes and get decent sized screens, (and we're talking 12++ inches here,) and get keyboards that normal sized fingers can use, they're butterly useless for watching movies, surfing or emailing. But then they'd be laptops, wouldn't they.
other olympic venues too?
The sneaky thing about terrorists (if they are even interested in the olympics) is that they don't do what you expect them to, or what you've prepared against. So once they've perpetrated one outrage - and made ordinary people's lives just that little bit more difficult and inconvenient, they don't do the same thing again. Instead they recognise that a particular avenue of badness has been closed and go on to do something far more unexpected.
So it is with the olympics. From the little I've heard, and the less I've been interested in it, it appears that there are lots of other venues where events will be held; and broadcast worldwide. All of these have the same potential to embarrass the govt. but without having to go head-to-head with the security pantomime at the main venue. It would therefore seem logical that the same level of security should be put in place at all the venues (though I would suppose the one that hosts the shooting events could look after itself).
> around 2 1/2 years
Correct. It means that half the units will have a failure in less than this time and a quarter
of them would have a failure in 15 months. To run one of these in a production environment
without having a fallback that didn't rely on any of this array's components, (and why else
would you pay such a large amount of cash for this quantity of storage if not for a front-line
production system) would be madness and / or negligence.
limited shelf life
These young hackers might be at the top of their game when they're discovered (though the truly good ones will probably stay off the radar), they won't remain top notch hackers much past the time they discover girls (or boys).
Though I can't help feeling that this programme will select people the same way The Apprentice selects barrow-boys (and girls) and called them executives.
SM (or even a "naked" It department) doesn't have customers. A customer - supplier relationship implies a transaction: goods or services out, money in. It also implies choice - that a "customer" can either choose not to buy, or can buy elsewhere. None of this is valid when parts of an organisation interact with each other. At best you have a series of monopolies locked in a mutual pact - at worst each department acts like an independent regime: trying to screw all the ones around it, without getting shafted themselves - and the best way to do that, is to do nothing. In the real world, we put in place a regulator to stop these monopolies from exploiting their power (although, admittedly a lot of them are pretty close to useless) and to punish those which don't deliver the required levels of service, or who don't play nice with everyone else.
Businesses hardly ever have any form of internal regulation. Yes, they put in place wishy-washy SLAs and high falutin' "mission statements" none of which are worth the paper they are written on, as they cannot be enforced, punished, competed against or avoided. While the more enlightened employers will have a bonus scheme with gold stars for teams that meet their SLAs, the motivation these provide is often slight, sporadic and disproportionate to the effort required. Plus, they still don't offer anything close to a free market for internal customers to choose from.
Most businesses are closer to a medieval dukedom, with someone at the top meting out arbitrary justice (or not) in response to complaints after the fact. Although instead of "off with his head", the worst that usually happens is a review meeting and promises made to do better in future. So getting back to the "why do we do it?"` question. The answer is (still) for the money. Anyone who says otherwise is lying. [test: if an employee says the money is not important, stop paying them. See how long they keep coming to work for.] and until this basic truth is addressed both in terms of the reward and penalty structures, there's little point in trying to solve problems with services any other way.
 this can be quite a good motivator - provided the level of punishment is sufficiently hard and credible. As Machiavelli wrote in"The Prince" (probably the first real book about management techniques). It's better to be feared than loved, if you can't be both.
Don't forget to double the price
As you'll need at least two: one for the data and the other for it's mirror. Oh yes, then a chunk of the I-O performance goes towards keeping the two copies in sync, so you'd better halve that figure, too.
Not so much cloud computing as mist
As T Mobile's german owners will, no doubt, be calling it
Until they're replaced by computers
Let's face it: all you need is an AI with a little bit of speech recog for people who still insist on phoning. Most games have some AI built in, a lot of websites offer an avatar to visitors. It shouldn't be long until the knowledge base and intelligence are good enough to ask "have you tried rebooting".
The only question that will remain is who fixes the AI when it crashes.
good to know
That all the time, money and effort educating the western world in the sciences hasn't been entirely wasted.
wasn't this on uk.legal?
There was a long running thread (Neighbour Trying To Harm My Cats) on uk.legal that sounds very similar to this a week or two ago. You can look up the details if you like - as with most threads it mutated into a flamewar about cats pretty quickly.
Is this a case of the Daily Wail imitating netnews, or life imitating art(icles)?
I was going to comment
about the utter lack of an IT perspective.
But I just can't be bothered.
@AC - Megacorp madness
> whole of IT, not just helpdesk staff, have forgotten who is the tail and who the dog.
so doesthat mean they have split the difference and become the bit in between? (you can take that as complimentary - the dog's b********* or derogatory - it's *****hole, as you wish)
The theory and the practice
In theory the helpdesk serves the business. it provides support to the revenue earning (primarily) and back office (secondarily) functions within a company to fix their operational problems, thereby mitigating risk, increasing efficiency and reducing costs. As part of this, organisations use IT as an enabllng technology to their business processes - allowing them to increase the speed, quality and consistency of their services.
In practice the helpdesk and IT in general is viewed universally as a necessary evil.They are both cost-centres, who's overheads should be minimised, while balancing expenditure with customer satisfaction and the operational needs of the organisation. There are very few companies who would not get rid of their IT in it's entirety, if only they could.
These opposing views come about as IT has never been able to come up with any tangible benefits for the money it costs. There is no way of measuring the business benefits it creates. None of it's outputs are measurable, yet it's inputs (money, people, floorspace, consumables) most definitely are. Since nothing it does can be measured, it follows that reducing it's output will therefore have no measurable effect on the organisation, hence it's a prime target for cost cutting.
What's worse is that the cost of the helpdesk can easily be divided by the amount of "work" it does (i.e. number of calls taken, problems fixed) and a cost per incident calculated. The problem is, that this CpI is often very high and seen as an immediate target for reduction, or, worse: cross charging. "Don't call the helpdesk, we get charged £45 every time we call them, we'll fix it ourselves. or install our own printers, or software, or whatever". So with this view, the helpdesk becomes the problem to be avoided..
So. the business hates it because it costs a lot of money. The users hate it because they get penalised for using it. the helpdesk staff hate it as they spend all day answering dumbass question from dumbass users. Yet no-one feels they can get rid of it. Who does it help? Usually, just itself.
> Being a US product
And that's the key. ISTM that all Amazon are doing is looking for a market where they can (cheaply) dump unsold stock. Whether they are truly ignorant of the UK market, presuming we're just a 51st state as we speak a language with a lot of the same words they have - or whether it's a genuine feeling that we'll lap up their out of date (this thing was released in america in Oct 2008) tech I don't know. Either way they're in for a shock - especially if they think we use 110Volts, too!
UI leaps back 30 years
Putting aside all the wunnerful tech 'n' all (which is really just a means to an end, and therefore not worth the average user getting excited about). What we have here is something a little smaller than an 80 x 24 line monochrome display .... the sort of thing we had on VDUs in the 70's.
Fine: it might use wizzy new tech. Fine: it might run off batteries. Fine: it might download (and then take away fro you) text over a wireless connection. But ultimately it's just a substitute for a book - and given the fiddly interface, small screen and large case size, not a very good one.
Thanks, but no thanks. For £200 I'd buy a netbook.
ascending or descending order?
and how many children know that "the truth" is anyway? Hint: not what surveys tell us.
> a remote-download device
or just schedule the download to start when you choose. A simple "cron" job would do it, or for those unfortunates who don't / can't do that, just set up the downloading web page and have a little AutoIt3 script that clicks the "download" button at the predetermined time.
and still no-one will watch
So you sign up, get assigned your video feeds - for which the suck^H^H^H^Hcustomer pays £20 per month for you to watch. Then what?
Simple(s) you bugger off and play golf all day. Just leave the CCTV feeds to rot. Who will know? Who will care? Why would you care?
I can't see any possible reason why any company would possibly want to pay any amount at all for the feed from their CCTVs to be sent off to a vacant monitor somewhere on the internet, when they can have it all fed to a monitor of their own - which no-one will watch, either.
There's no oversight on this, no possibility of an audit and no way of verifying that anyone is implementing the service the customers are paying for.
If there was any place where the question "who watches the watchers?" needs to be asked, this is it.
The main role of the hell desk is to limit users access to the talent.
In any organisation there are a very small number of technical staff who actually know what's going on. What things work, what things can be made to work (with a smack in the right place) and what parts are irredeemably broken. Sadly, the number of people who want and/or need to tap these individuals' experience far outweighs their ability to deal with the demand. So,. apart from the VIPs, every other victim of a companies IT system is tested for their will and resolve before getting through to someone who actually knows what they're doing.
The first hurdle is the time spent on hold, including touchpad entry of pointless information - which you will be asked for again, many times. This hurdle also includes arbitrary cutoffs and recorded messages telling you how important your call is (answer: not important at all).
The second hurdle is when you're put through to an actual person. You know it's a person as no AI could be so obtuse. They will ask you to repeat all the previously entered information, including facts that you simply don't know - including the famous dialog:"what's your password?" - "what password?" - "your online password" - "for what" - "for contacting us online" - "but I'm not contacting you online" - "but we need your password" - "but I've never received a password" - "well I can't help you without one" - "so where can I get one" - "fom our online system" - "but I need a password to access that" " - "yes <click>".
If you get past this step the third hurdle is to not garrot yourself using the phone cord (hint: avoid this by calling from your mobile - at extortionate call rates)" after you've lost the will to live, by answering the rote questions, such as "have you tried rebooting" - "but its a vacuum cleaner". Or "what have your changed?" - "nothing, I was watching <name of programme> and it suddenly told be my account had expired" and the killer: "what software version have you got?" - "<answer truthfully>" - "ahh, well, that isn't supported anymore". If you do get any advice from this stage, it's the stuff that was written in Appendix A of the user manual, which you've already tried, failed and tried again to implement.
The final phase to the successful use of a helpdesk is to use the time you spend waiting, explaining and on hold (between cut-offs) to search the internet for the real answer to your problems - which is exactly what they want you to do in the first place. The modern day truth is that most organisations don't have the small number of talented staff any more. they all got hacked off with answering support questions all day, or got head-hunted by a competitor. So really, helping yourself through the medium of the 'net is the only practical solution. Of course if it's your network connection that's the reason you need to call the helpdesk - then, my friend, you're truly screwed.
another token to be ignored
When the govt won't even use the tools it currently possesses, such as referendums, what is the point in talking about other layers of "have your say"? Especially ones that would be limited to the select few people with internet connections and the free time and understanding to wade through the outpourings of our governmental system.
Experience shows us that the one thing NO "democratic" government in Britain ever wants to do is reflect the will of the people. That's why we are governed, not represented. While it is possible for sufficiently rich and powerful people such as newspaper owners and party donors to twist policy around their little fingers, I cannot see any reason why a party in power would want to give away any of that power without getting soemthing back for themselves.
So. It doesn't pay and confers no privileges. It sounds to me like it's only value is to give bragging rights to the holder - and possibly to negotiate a few $K more at job interviews. Hopefully most people aren't shallow enough for this to make any difference to their lives, so it's loss (or withdrawl) should not make any difference.
a narrow escape
> he sank his teeth into an "unnamed body part"
Now, there aren't many body parts that a chap gives a name to (even frenchmen). So I suppose it's lucky that the dog didn't chew on one of them - otherwise he (it?) would at least have been exiled to Elba.
processes produce consistency
That can be consistently good, or consistently bad. it all depends on what practices the process was modeled on. It also defines the lowest acceptable quality of output from that process. Guess what happens next? Yup, the lowest acceptable quality becomes the norm - the target. Nothing more than that is expected, or delivered as over-achieving takes longer than necessary and costs more. all for no added benefit. Frequently, a process will define the maximum time to respond - once again, that becomes the target figure too and all deliverables will tend to be delivered at or near to the target time, rather than earlier, even if they have been produced in a timely fashion (although that wouldn't happen, as there's no incentive to produce anything earlier than the deadline).
So if a process says the maximum time allowed to respond to a service call is 6 hours - then in 5 and a half hours, you can expect a call. If the process defines a response as merely an acknowledgment, then that's what you'll get: not a fix, just an email to say "^Thank you for your submission. We will get around to doing some real work in due course."
Where does all this leave the motivated, conscientious and enthusiastic workers who WANT to deliver high quality solutions (or products) in a fast and effective manner. Well, they can if they want to, buy there's no incentive or recognition for doing so - so they become demotivated, stale and cynical jobsworths who will play the system and do the minimum amount necessary to just scrape past the quality metrics. Or else they'll leave and go to forward-looking companies where their initiative and energy is harnessed, rather than dissipated, ignored or even criticised for making the other team members look bad.
Processes CAN help to produce good enough results, but all too often they don't reward the best people, crush initiative and cannot differentiate the high quality staff you would wish to keep, from the indolent types who will hide behind non-compliance in their inputs as excuses to not do any work. Essentially a process is a procedure and a procedure (as we know, since we're IT people here) is a subroutine and a subroutine is part of a program. Just look at ITIL - a software specification, if ever there was one. Programs are for computers to execute - not people. If your job is sufficiently repetitive and deskilled that it can be described in terms a computer can understand, then that's what should be doing it, not you:. Unless of course, you're happy being a drone and don't mind being laid off just as soon as it becomes cheaper for a small beige box to be wheeled in, and for you to be wheeled out.
Congratulations! You win today's prize.
Occasionally I slip some deliberate misspelllings into articles and documents as a test to see if anyone ever reads them. Most pass unnoticed, such as references to the space scuttle, time is monkey and the famous (not by me) if you read this I'll give you £10.
When used at work no-one has ever claimed the tenner and almost never remarked about other errors. Whether you conclude nobody ever reads the documents I write, they die or boredom before getting to the offer, they have me sussed or just assume I'm being daft is anybody's guess.
What's the prize? well, don't hold our breath waiting for the tenner. However you are cordially invited to sit back, take it easy and reflect upon your superiority. At least until the boss comes back from lunch.
what people really want
There's little point in a survey about what sort of advertising people want or think should be allowed. The reason being that it misses the biggest issue: people would prefer NO advertising at all, so whether it is "blanket" advertising or "tailored" advertising is rather like asking a person if they're prefer to be eaten by a shark or a tiger.
What will happen is that the advertisers will adopt whatever methods prove to be most effective in pursuance of their goat: getting people to buy stuff they don't want. Even if one technique or another is banned, the advertisers will still find loopholes, as there's too much money to be made to let it drop.
 here "prove" is used very loosely to mean "believe", given that it's impossible to tell almost anything about the effectiveness of any particular advertisement. Hence the old saying in advertising circles: "Half the money spent on advertising is wasted. Unfortunately, no-one knows which half."
A rough translation
Shame that google translate doesn't do marketing into english. It might come out something like this:
Some of our customers are currently experiencing intermittent service problems caused by power fluctuations at one of our facilities. Our engineers are working hard to bring services back on line as quickly as possible.
Most of our customers are screaming at us as the service crashed when someone switched off the wrong switch. Our engineers are scratching their heads trying to get the systems to reboot, but haven't really got a scoobie why they don't work.
yes, errr no, ... um - yes
it's impossible to say.
There's a huge placebo effect with stuff like this. partly because the average PC user cannot detect performance improvements (or drops) of less than 50%, so a tune-up on a decently working PC will be indistinguishable from nothing. Yes, it will just about twitch the needle on a benchmark, but for the average Joe: nada. --- Although they'll aways say it "feels" faster, just to be polite.
But ..... the average PC that's been in use for a year or two is going to be in such a state that it's hard NOT to improve it's performance. The main drag seems to be all the temp files, garbage in caches and millions upon millions of cookies. Assuming of course, that there isn't one or more viruses or trojans lurking in there, somewhere.
I just wish all the cr@p cleaners, tuner-uppers and the like would just stick to the basics: remove the junk, scan for baddies and then stop. There's no measurable speed benefit from defragging the registry, or removing orphans or any of these other features, that software makers feel compelled to add, just to bump the revision number to show they're still in business. Once you get past the basics, the chances of screwing things up badly and without noticing go up very fast. Especially for the sort or average users who need these utilities the most.
you get a much larger payout by setting up (or having your friends / family sign up) from a quidco account. OK, you probably have to wait for the wonga, but it's better to travel in hope than to arrive.
That's the nice thing about in-ear and noise canceling phones. Since they stop all the outside noise from interfering with the music, you can keep the volume down and still hear all the quiet bits.
They do have the disadvantage that you can't hear a dam' thing so far as announcements go. So if you like listening to your stuff with your eyes closed, you run the risk of being the last person on the plane when everyone else has got out through the emergency exits and is legging it.
If these things don't get enough fat from their bamboo-shoot diet, maybe what they need is for some enterprising multinational to open up a fast-food (and bamboo does grow very quickly) operation for the GPs.
Hopefully they wouldn't then die from lack of hibernation - or from type 2 diabetes complications instead.
@AC - Good ....sort-of?
> What next? Unpaid parole officers?
Oh I'm sure there are lots of possibilities. E.g. Hiring a builder or other trades-person? Better check they've got an up to date waste disposal license, otherwise YOU'RE responsible for the rubbish they take from your site. if they get stopped, you get fined.
Linux might just make it as a BIOS
If they can shrink the bloat, dump a lot of old (and frankly obsolete) hardware drivers ans pare it down to just basic CPU, memory, USB, disk, networking, video, keyboard and mouse drivers. Then load it into a sufficiently large flashable BIOS they might have a chance.
Yes, I know there are projects that claim to do this - but where are they when they're needed? (and more to the point, which M/board manufacturers are using it?). What you end up with is a sort of desktop PDA with a decent sized screen and boots in ...one ... .two ... and it's there. Build in a smallish SSD and include a web browser that links to networked applications and that might, just be a hit.
Forget configuration, updates, patches and all that malarkey. Turn the PC into a toaster that people just switch on and use.