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* Posts by Charles 9

3599 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Tech is the biggest problem facing archiving

Charles 9
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Re: Proprietary backup format = No backup

The trouble is that ANY format can eventually become either proprietary or otherwise obsolete. Take your optical discs. More and more computers are showing up with no optical drives to speak of. So what happens when the time comes to actually retrieve that archived data, your drive is discovered to be knackered, and they don't make optical drives anymore (because they've moved on to things like 3-D crystal storage or something)?

I can see what's going on. It's the competing pressures of paying up to keep all this archived data and the risk that the archived data may not be there when it actually become necessary. How do you know you actually need the data...before you actually need the data? And if the threat is existential, then price no longer becomes an object.

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Production-ready ZFS offers cosmic-scale storage for Linux

Charles 9
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Re: Open source purity

Iceweasel and the result are the result of trademark issues. The Mozilla Foundation doesn't want anyone using a modified version of its software to carry its trademarks: in essence, "Don't use our name with your version." Now, trademarks are a separate issue from software licensing, so they compromise: if you compile Firefox straight up, you're cool beans, but if you modify it, they require you to make your own logo for your version. They even give you free use of the globe icon which is common to all Mozilla products. Just don't use THEIR logos.

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Charles 9
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Re: License madness

"Why on earth would you want the file system driver in the kernel?"

Because if it isn't in the kernel, it can't be used as a baseline partition. You can't boot userspace filesystems because userspace doesn't appear until later in the boot process.

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Charles 9
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Re: Must say it..

Hard to do when there aren't enough atoms or energy to keep that much data on the planet Earth, just as you can't cram a baker's dozen eggs in an egg carton without breaking something. ZFS limits were intentionally set to be beyond PHYSICAL limitations.

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Music resale service ReDigi loses copyright fight with Capitol Records

Charles 9
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Re: ok - I'll bite

"Apparently we are living in a world where the consumer is no longer buying stuff but licensing it. And government and legislature are supporting this. Marvellous thing, democracy."

It's happening everywhere in the electronic world--everyone's going to a service economy where you never BUY anything but just RENT it. OnLive was basically a game rental service, many pieces of commercial software are moving to a subscription model.

They're just finally applying a basic tenet of economics: there's almost always more money in REPEAT business. And if the only business around is repeat business, you can create a naturally captive market.

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Review: HTC One

Charles 9
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Re: Everyone is obsessed with SD cards and batteries.

Have you had your phone undergo a hard freeze? I have, to the point that not even the power button works. That's the main reason I prefer a removable battery: it's a last resort in the event nothing else works--not even a reset button.

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Charles 9
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Re: YEEEAAAHHH! IR REMOTE ONCE AGAIN!

Must've gotten positive reviews for the feature on the Galaxy Tabs (I have a 7.0 Plus). It seems to work better than their network-based remote control program (which tends to Force Close on me).

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Charles 9
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Re: Clerk

When the kid needs to go and the map's out of date, you start appreciating an always-up-to-date map program that can point you to a bathroom quick. Same for traffic detours and so on; I don't know about you, but I don't intend to wait three hours for an accident to clear up when I could've diverted to surface streets at the last exit. As for the web browsing, it's a one-day sale and you're comparison shopping. By the time you get home, the item may be gone or the sale ended, so a quick snap to the web for some info helps you to make a smart choice on the spot (sorry, Napoleon, no time to go home). A smartphone may not be for you, but for some of us, we find it most handy and are willing to shell out a little more (in my case, $40 a month) for the capability.

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Charles 9
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Re: No mention in the review about 4G, LTE higher speed internet - the phone supports multi-band LTE

That would put the LTE modem of the One at a Category 3 (100 dn/50 up).

As for the bands, the LTE bands tend to be a bit more precise, so perhaps it would be better to know the +/- of the different MHz ranges so as to know which bands they cover. That said, based on what I'm seeing, this spectrum seems to have a European focus with some American accommodation. Interesting they only list three frequencies, as the S4 claims six; it's something to compare against.

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Charles 9
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Re: No swappable battery, no sale

Just out of curiosity, do they make USB chargers that can affix to bicycle wheels so that they can charge the phone while you ride (as well as provide a little extra load for a workout)?

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Forget the invisibility cloak: Boffins invent INVISIBILITY FISHNETS

Charles 9
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Re: Oddly shaped objects

* Why don't they put corners on cars nowdays? They're all just blobs, not a single straight edge by which to judge parking. And they have distorting wing mirrors to make you cross-eyed just as you want to change lanes on the motorway, it's bonkers!

Streamlining. It goes to aerodynamics. You will notice many airplanes (commercial and military) try to limit the number of sharp corners on their bodies as they affect airflow and thus fuel efficiency.

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Charles 9
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Re: Surely Not Invisible

Multistatic radar can defeat that kind of stealth because it works by detecting changes in the ambient radio noise. To fool such a system, you need a cloak-type device that actually diverts the radio waves without altering their course; otherwise, a sensitive enough radio receiver will detect the alteration. And the "fishnet" noted in the article will stick out like a sore thumb--current stealth technology already relies on scattering. To the receiver, both would look like a dead zone.

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You know how your energy bills are SO much worse than they were?

Charles 9
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Re: WAMSR

Based on the discussions in that same forum, many are questioning whether or not the design is actually sound. It's basically a variant on an MSR and these have troubles of their own, to say nothing about the fuel cycle which has a high potential for poisoning requiring some long standing times for aspects of the fuel.

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Charles 9
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Re: Nuclear, nuclear, nuclear, nuclear....

And smaller Generation IV microreactors reduce proliferation concerns by simply using too little fuel for an adversary to consider worth the effort (especially once it's buried tens of meters underground).

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Charles 9
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Re: Nuclear, nuclear, nuclear, nuclear....

If you go to the comments, you'll see that most of us are sceptical of its practicality. After all, it's not like the design has been vetted by actual nuclear engineers who have to consider possibilities like a failsafe failing because the failure occurred in an isolated area that failsafe was not designed to cover. IOW, we'll believe it when we see it.

Frankly, I wouldn't mind seeing more Generation IV reactors being built, but there's always something in the way...

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BIGGEST DDoS ATTACK IN HISTORY hammers Spamhaus

Charles 9
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Re: I hope we can all agree...

That won't work in this case as the attack was distributed. Even if you limit requests to 1 per second, the attack contacted SEVERAL THOUSAND of them at once in a barrage. Think of it like this. You tell a few of your buds you're having a party. Each of them tells a bunch of THEIR friends; next thing you know, you don't have a refrigerator (or perhaps house) big enough to accommodate the party.

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Nvidia unveils Minority Report-style face-bot tech

Charles 9
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Re: "So how is this going to be used in the real world?"

I think most of us figure Hollywood will get the most use out of it at first. At the very least, when it comes to final render, they don't have to worry so much about realtime rendering; it's the facial accuracy they'll want more than anything. This level of facial detail is perhaps still rather too complex for use at the consumer level, but it shows a tantalizing hint of the future--say, 7-10 years down the road.

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Charles 9
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Re: Hmm...

When you add the "per Second", you normally Capitalize the S to make it a proper part of the acronym. So it's either "2 TFLOPs per second" or "2 TFLOPS".

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Flooding market with cheap antivirus kit isn't going to help ANYONE

Charles 9
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Re: What if ...

Until they learn what your BIOS or EFI system is and infect THAT. At that point, even nuking from orbit may not be an option anymore. Plus what if you have to go BACK to that one system eventually?

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Charles 9
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Re: Something getting loaded into RAM? ...

That's assuming the USB distro you used was clean, but then you get into the whole "who watches the watchers" thing.

Plus what if the malware, even in RAM, can privilege escalate to root, sniff out other drives attached to the system, mount them, detect installed OS's, and find ways to infect them from there? If some APT hasn't caught on to the idea of infecting offline systems, they probably will in future.

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Software bug halts Curiosity: Nuke lab bot in safe mode

Charles 9
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Re: 32 or 64 bit "checksums"???

I think comms are restricted because trying to send anything past the sun means it gets irradiated on the way. Perhaps a conservative estimate will be that at least HALF the bits are likely to get flipped. With a failure rate of over 50%, odds are against the signal getting through, so they assume a transmission will fail and just won't do it.

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Charles 9
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Re: So *not* a buffer overflow error in fact.

Shouldn't that be JMP (or BRA, depending on the architecture) +0x02? This instruction would have to be two-byte,and you have to clear the instruction itself, after all.

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Feds cuff ex-NASA boffin at airport amid state-secret leak scare

Charles 9
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Re: Never travel direct; never use a credit card; never book a flight to eventual destination ...

Not in this day and age. IIRC almost all smartphones use a standard 3.6-3.7v voltage. A savvy investigator would have a way to fake a battery using those specs and knowledge of where the correct pins are located.

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FCC waves big fines at political robocallers

Charles 9
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Most of the three strikes laws qualify the classes of crime in which they apply. Many have differing levels of punishment. For example, three misdemeanors equals a felony charge. The mandatory "20 to life" sentences are usually restricted to three violent felonies, though some jurisdictions are looser and just use three felonies.

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Charles 9
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Re: This is why US cells pay to receive phone calls.

I think one reason it keeps going is that many callers have either gone flat (mine is flat) or have such generous allowances that it really doesn't matter anymore. It only really becomes an issue if you're using the most basic prepaid services, and those people tend to be naturally stingy about their cell time (they also know how to ignore a call).

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Charles 9
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Re: Stop the threats

The trouble is that phone calls, especially of a political nature, run smack into the First Amendment. In terms of freedom of speech, political speech tends to be given the freest reign. At this point, there is a VERY fine line between legitimate campaign calling for tens of millions of Americans and spam, and it likely keeps moving. That's probably why the FCC is taking what may be seen as an excessively careful approach, lest they fire back with claims they've been denied their rights under the Constitution.

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CCTV hack takes casino for $33 MILLION in poker losses

Charles 9
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Re: The Newtonian Casino

There was a TV series in the US called, "Breaking Vegas," which was all about true stories of outwitting casinos (not just in Vegas). It was based on a pilot special which described the time a college professor and a few students became well-trained Blackjack card counters, and it went on from there. I recall one episode having a family of (I think) Latinos training themselves to study roulette wheels for bias.

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Charles 9
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Re: Measure Twice Cut Once

And how do you stop insiders? What about the connection to the commission?

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Charles 9
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Re: $33 million in EIGHT HANDS?

Don't make such a big deal about the AMOUNT of the take. The article notes that this was a very exclusive room, indicating this was a high-stakes cash game. In such an environment, six- to seven-figure wagers can and will happen. For all we know, the table had $50,000 antes and blinds in the $100,000-$200,000 range (if a community card game like Texas Holdem was being played). IIRC such high stakes are not limited to poker. IIRC, baccarat was famously known as a favorite among high-stakes gamblers.

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Charles 9
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Joke

Re: Faraday cage

I sincerely hope you were just joking on an alternate interpretation on this abbreviation of "Persona Non Grata".

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Charles 9
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Re: Brings a new consideration to the phrase

1. If we look at the Netherlands, we see the possibility of drug use going DOWN because the "forbidden fruit" effect is gone (some people will partake simply because it's illegal--sticking it to The Man and all).

2. Once it's legal, drugs can be regulated. Manufacturers can be inspected and quality controls enacted. IOW, you can help make sure that whatever goes out is as safe as you can expect from it. The users than inherit whatever risks are inherent with the drug.

3. You can still ban specific drugs for significantly justifiable reasons (for example, drugs with a very easy tendency to overdose so whose safety can't be controlled).

Take a look at the US and alcohol. Was alcohol easier to control DURING Prohibition...or AFTER Prohibition?

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Charles 9
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Re: No Laws Broken?

You could probably get illegal wiretapping on the books, but casino cheating isn't normally in the books as a crime, especially if they don't involve the instruments of the game (in this case, the cards). Still, as happened here, the casino is perfectly withing their rights to tell a cheater to get out and stay out. Happens all the time, and casinos usually pass around blacklists between each other to help keep them in the loop about cheats who might try to find new haunts.

Still, given the sophistication involved here, I would (pardon the pun) place my bets on an inside job.

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Samsung's new Galaxy S 4: iPhone assassin or Android also-ran?

Charles 9
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Some of us have BEEN waiting.

Well, it depends on what phones we have right now. Your phones are pretty recent. Mine was released about three years ago and is starting to get long in the tooth (even Opera Mobile starts to chug on any decent website, even when in mobile mode--512MB just doesn't carry well these days; my big thing was its hardware keyboard). Plenty of us have even older phones. It's not like we jump every year, but when things start getting clunky, we start making considerations. I moved from an N95 to my original Android phone for the same reason. I did not regret the decision as I got lots of use out of it. Once the S4 comes out, I'll start looking for live demonstrations to get some hands-on time and see if it's worth it. What I really want to know is if anyone other than HTC (sorry, but no removable battery or SD slot is a deal-breaker) is going to come out with similar devices before year's end. AFAIK, nothing yet.

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Charles 9
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Re: As long as you can turn off bits.

BT keyboard support has been standard fare since Android 3 Honeycomb IIRC.

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Charles 9
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A further update. According to Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 600 (the 1.9Ghz quad core) will be in the American version of the S4. The 1.5GHz big.LITTLE Exynos processor will be in the international version. This introduces other considerations. The Snapdragon is faster while the Exynos is supposed to be more efficient. Plus there are questions about the frequencies that will be used in the different versions of the phone.

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Charles 9
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Re: Meh

I think the situation is that we've reached something of a plateau in terms of phone functionality. They can already do so much, and as you've said, many people are content with the functions their phones possess, but many might jump if something very innovative and practical came along. But right now, no one can see what that new killer application can be. Even Apple, long reputed for being able to drive hordes to some new feature, suffered a rare misfire. So, if APPLE can't find the killer app in the current generation, then perhaps the best one can hope for is to throw a few things and see if something sticks. The S 4 has a lot of things in it. Perhaps someone can make something useful out of it.

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Charles 9
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Need to play with it first.

Battery life under use is something that is difficult to gauge without experience, since architecture and design can have a role in battery usage. We do know that the battery is rated at 2600mAh, which for a phone is decently beefy (to go bigger, you normally end up at the Notes or at phones with non-replaceable batteries--the Notes and some of the fixed-battery phones can do over 3 Ah).

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Charles 9
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I've been gathering more news about the S 4, and an interesting one I've read is that reaction back home in South Korea has been...less than flattering. So I'm of a mind to see if there will be competition to it in the coming months. Does anyone have an idea if anything comparable to this from the likes of other companies is on the schedule sometime this year? I am patient enough to wait if competition is coming soon.

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Charles 9
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Since Home screens are customizable, the basic belief is that if you access an app often enough, you'll have the inclination to drag the app from the drawer to the home screen of your own volition. In this case, "smart" may not be desirable since some people are sticklers for their particular form of organization. But in other areas, favorites lists and so on do show up from time to time.

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Charles 9
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Re: Some features I'm excited about

"MicroSD slot - This is a pet peeve... Manufactures charging more for higher capacity because there is no expansion option"

Actually, the plan is that Samsung will charge more for higher capacity AND still offer the SD Slot. Oh well. At least you can pick and choose and still build up later.

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Charles 9
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Re: You have my attention.

Have to wonder, though, if they'll support the capacities out of the box. Since the big hurdle (exFAT support) is already licked, I would hope so, but you never know.

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Charles 9
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Re: Sounds great

You're talking to one. I did it for a three-week stint, and it worked out nicely, and despite a number of international calls and texts (not to mention a generous data allowance) the final damage wasn't all that significant.

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Charles 9
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GLONASS was cheap to add in.

I believe they use compatible setups, making it easy for GPS chipmakers to add in GLONASS support. It basically boiled down to "Why the hell not?"

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Charles 9
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1) None of them start with a K.

2) Google is an American company, and Key Lime Pie is a well-known American dessert. Has anyone given thought to what'll be the next name? Lemon Meringue Pie, perhaps? Probably just Licorice...

3) At least Samsung gives recent adopters some slack. My Tablet 7.0 Plus was upgraded to ICS eventually. I think we'll see the SIV's move on up in due time. It'd be best to give the pie a little time to cool in any event to avoid biting into a hot spot. I'm sure as soon as it comes out we'll see work begin on CM11.

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Charles 9
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Re: Different bands for different markets - how awful

In any event, they're trying to be as accommodating as possible. The GSM and HSPA radios are each quad-band and the LTE one is hex-band, and you can usually find some overlap between areas. Even for my T-Mobile G2 (aka HTC Desire Z), I was pleasantly surprised to find an overlapping HSPA+ frequency in the Philippines at 1900MHz. 900MHz is being included in the US frequency list for HSPA(+) and both 900 and 1800MHz are supported on EDGE. Hopefully, the LTE radio will make room for some common international bands.

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Charles 9
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Re: What I'd like to see...

I'm also grateful that Micro USB has become the standard charging method. It makes getting a USB battery brick more versatile.

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Charles 9
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Re: High dissatisfaction

If I do get an SIV, i'll definitely be getting it unbranded (otherwise, I'll hold off). I can tolerate TouchWiz and I'll see what apps they offer. If I'm not satisfied...hopefully Samsung will be lenient on those who buy the phone unbranded and make it easy to reflash it.

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Charles 9
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Re: Sounds great

Sensible travelers would swap SIMs upon arriving and use a local prepaid system (pay for a short stint, use it, then toss it away as you leave). Rates may vary, but they're likely better than international roaming.

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New nuke could POWER WORLD UNTIL 2083

Charles 9
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Re: Recycling of ideas

But does it SCALE? Let's see this happen at 500MWe. IIRC that's about 1GWt. That's a lot of energy to render safe without any assistance.

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Charles 9
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Re: What about the oil barons??@Tom Welsh

And if fission takes off, there's even work under way to use spare nuclear power to produce synthetic hydrocarbons. The US Navy's interested because it means carriers have to pack less fuel each time they refit. If they can pull it off, the oil companies will probably be paying more serious attention to nuclear power since it could actually disrupt their bread-and-butter industries.

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