260 posts • joined Monday 14th December 2009 10:55 GMT
Re: @ Alain If they allow copyright on APIs ...
I agree with HollyHopDrive. The API analogy is the 'Book'. It has methods (APIs) of
'Write(int pageNumber, int chapter, string title, string content)'
'Read()' might return an object called 'Chapter' with properties like 'Title' and 'Content'.
An API is not a finished book, it is the means to create a book and is not is copyrightable. The specific number of chapters, their titles and the chapter content of a specific book instance are open to copyright.
This distinction between the abstract concept of an API and a physical instance of an object seems to be lost on legal types in much the same way as the rationale for legalese is lost on non-legal types. But that doesn't mean the rationale for legalese is irrelevant.
So the suggestion is that products are made more expensive to be recyclable when there's no shortage. Mmmm. Good idea. The report's author clearly didn't stop by their colleagues in the economics department.
An alternative might be to create big holes in the ground into which the potentially interesting parts of electronic kit are dumped. Then in n thousand years the miners and geologists of the day will be able to locate rich deposits and process them when it become economically viable to do so.
Citizen: "Excuse me, lawyer (I mean Senator/Representative) would you mind changing the law so that one potential and lucrative income stream is not available when you give up politics?"
Senator/Representative: "Mmm, let me think about that for a moment..."
Re: Is this a story?
Every assembly line worker. The summer holidays after school I took a job on an assembly line packing loo cisterns. Easy enough but like my fellow packers, I was on my feet all day except for a 15 minute break in the morning and 1 hour at lunch. There are lots and lots of jobs like this and have been since the dawn agriculture.
What world do you live in? Maybe mummy and daddy should have forced you to use a plastic spoon once in a while.
Re: Is this a story?
Yes, but he's really a journalist. You know, someone used to sitting on his butt all day everyday. Imagine the complaints he must have had about the blisters on his poor little feet.
Re: Sounds good...
Steve, in the US "software" alone cannot be patented. However, software that is an intrinsic part of some hardware - like the software which is part of an engine management system system or the way the image on a mobile phone screen is displayed as a user fingers it. The EU also permits this type of software patenting.
Where the US differs from most of the rest of the world is that it permits software to be patented that is part of a "business process". Then you begin to get the contentious patents appearing such as the one-click patent issued to Amazon for buying products on a web site. If a patent lawyer is successfully able to argue that some software supports a business process then the patent is likely to be granted.
Clearly Judge Cote averred with respect to matchmaking. And good for her. It's not often that common sense prevails in such cases.
Re: No middle ground for the hard Greens...
Some, understandably, are concerned at the future consequences for humans (i.e. themselves) so wrap themselves in the comforting blanket of carbon reduction. They form an easy market for scare stories but even so, it's bizarre that mainstream media is happy to run with stories from individuals and groups that are really advocating genocide. In any other context, the suggestion that the world should take an action that would have the effect of killing billions of people (billions not millions) would be ridiculed. But for some reason not in this context. Because the earth may warm up a bit in the next 100 years and some ecosystems may change, it appears to be acceptable to advocate policies that would have disastrous consequences. Fight a highly unlikely Armageddon with a certain Armageddon.
Re: Fine, until...
Or you go to the local library and use their wifi connection from your phone or tablet, or spend an an afternoon in a coffee shop or local pub (because they all offer free wifi). The days of worrying about the unlikely event of the water company digging through your telephone line are, fortunately, in the past.
However, the cost of this service is unlikely to be appealing to home users. To include Office its $50/month or $600/year but you can rent Office for 5 devices for $100/year. That makes the cost of the desktop $500/year or the cost of a laptop or iPhone each year. Maybe AWS think those economics work for business but it's not going to appeal outside the work environment.
The browser maker have little or no power. The adverts we see are not generated by the browser. They are generated by the web site you visit. The browser maker can add a handy option that puts a header into each request but it's up to the web site owner whether or not they honor the intent of the header. It's not like there's an <ad/> tag which wraps everything ad related on a page so the browser is powerless to do any filtering without also potentially affecting the content you want to see. OK there are ad blocker tool but they are very specific and, anyway, do not need a header to offer their limited help.
This is not a scenario I recognize. In my experience women are as bad, and perhaps a little worse, for checking their phones for messages. I'm a bit of a stickler for wanting people to pay attention. If attendees at a meeting need to be doing better things they should be doing better things. But if they are in the meeting they should attending to the business at hand.
But it's probably me. How many times have you been talking to someone, say in their office, the phone rings and they answer it. Some random call is received and it trumps the time you have taken to visit with them to discuss a topic. If the visit was for idle gossip then OK. But not in a business context. The opposite is also true. Someone is visiting, my phone rings. Because I do not answer the incredulous visitors asks me if I want to answer the phone. Bizarre.
Reflects my experience
I agree with this author 100%.
I, too, thought the Pi would be a good way to interest my kids. So I signed up and ordered one long before they were available and waited. Eventually it arrived and I was disappointed. I knew there was no keyboard, power supply, etc. but there are spares in my cave. But seeing this hub surrounded by wires did not inspire any of my kids, just the opposite. They can build a PC but those big cases, ugly as they are, serve to hide wiring.
My kids have grown up with Windows. High quality displays attached by a S-VGA or even better a DVI connector. Rarely, if ever, do they touch a command line and even then only with guidance from me. "You want me to get the computer to do something by typing a command?" Yes, they do it in games but not in Windows.
So imagine their horror at seeing the Pi boot to the command prompt. Oh, and the display was terrible. It was probably the screen I chose or the HDMI connector but it was horrible. It was like hooking a Spectrum up to a cathode ray TV screen used to be. Back then it was OK, there was nothing better to compare with.
By now it's all I can do to stop them running, screaming, out of the room. But I persist. We start Linux and see the GUI. I'm really pleased. To kids used to Windows XP and Windows 7 it was an alien, nightmare world where things look kind of the same but in a grotesquely different way.
I use Linux daily, mainly at the command prompt, so to me this is all normal. I really failed to understand how different is the Pi environment, how disenchanting this is for a modern kid who just wants to chat with friends over WhatsApp or play some edition of COD or watch a movie fragments on YouTube. Maybe even do their homework.
The Pi is a good idea. But the hardware is just the start if it is to be used to motivate kids to learn. As the author suggests, it's missing all the learning materials. One of the problems of much open source software is the lack of documentation - because engineers hate writing documentation. It doesn't float their boat. That's OK for much open source because the users are going to be knowledgeable and will be able to find posts from others to answer questions.
It's clear to me that the Pi is a device created by electronics enthusiasts who, like their counterparts in the open source world dislike writing documentation much less the structured learning materials that will be required if the Pi is to be anything more than a curiosity.
A specific problem with the thrust of this paper comes from the core statistic that temperatures have risen 3.9 degrees in 22 years. This may well be true, but since it is acknowledged that the temperature of the earth as a whole has not changed in 15 years, it is much more likely that there are local warming effects. But there is no analysis of what they may be. There is no real analysis of any alternative cause for the rise in temperature other than made-made causes.
The report states: “This study really says the warming we are seeing is outside any kind of known natural variability, and it has to be due to increased greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.”
No, they are not known. So the author and colleagues should get off their collective butts and go find them. This is supposed to be science. In scientific research the challenge is to disprove a hypothesis not find a favorite excuse and go blame it. General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics are the most accurate theories we have know and yet these are under constant review. However the basic tenet of the green movement get precious little truly critical review. Why is this?
The change in temperature, if true, it large and over a vast area. The energy required to do this is enormous. So where is this energy coming from? If its from the sun, are the concentrations of greenhouse gases like CO2, CH4 and H20 higher in the artic?
The green movement suffers massively from the delusion that if they point to something and claim their favorite excuse everyone will believe. Then there's the massive sulk and tantrum when people don't agree. People are stupid - just not that stupid.
Missing the point
In my view the article's writer has become lost and seduced by a sales person. If you need a large, permanent volume of transactional storage then the in-house route is probably going to be cheaper. You are likely to have the in-house expertise to manage that storage, access to it, backup, etc.
As I understand it, that's not the point of any AWS service. Services like (but not limited to) AWS allow an organization the ability to use large volumes when the need arises. If you need 100TB for a month or so, the arguments in this article go out the window because then you have a choice of funding a data center to cover the needs of just one month or paying the premium for being able to use existing hardware for just one month.
OK, the one month case is unlikely. But the point is, that Amazon does not seem to be in the business of replacing the data center but instead providing the ability to ramp up and down use of CPU, RAM storage, etc. on demand. If the 'on-demand' has no value and you have the skills in-house then AWS will have no value.
On the other hand, if you do not have the in-house skills or your need for a hit of CPU/RAM/Storage is short-term the on-demand route is going to look more attractive.
As ever, never listen to sales people.
Re: If you get them young and you will have them for life
Schools are in the business of educating the young to be productive employees and contributors to society generally. The reality is that if they land a desk job they will be using Microsoft Office. In my view it makes sense for them to learn about the tools that will be useful to employers. All the bullshit about open source is self serving nonsense and would be a waste of time for the kids. When there are a significant number of employees using Open Office or Libre Office then there will be reason to learn about other tools. Until then, Office it it.
It's a bizarre article. The premise of the article seems to be that the author knows how to run Amazon better than Amazon, that the decisions made are incorrect. Like all such article, the author only criticizes offering no alternative except the implied "don't do it" and based on the limited information to which he has access. Amazon makes money. An interpretation is that Bezos and co are investing in the future of their platform. What would the author have them do? If the author would prefer the profits be returned to investors the correct place for that argument is the AGM - assuming he is an investor.
@ff22 Not the same thing, is it? The AWS API for PHP is a library of PHP code that allows a programmer to control their AWS assets using PHP (instead of Java or C# or Python). The announcement by Google is that PHP can *run* on the GAE. Of course it's not so useful.
PHP can run on any EC2 instance and the owner of the instance can do anything - for example, run WordPress. The restrictions imposed on PHP by Google seem minor in the way they are presented. But they mean you can't run WordPress or Joomla or Drupal or pretty much any other major PHP framework. So its good but only if you like to code in PHP and don't need the help of an existing framework to get your job done.
Seems like a feeble attempt to be able to say 'me too' when GAE is compared with AWS or Azure..
This is the second article claiming that 'three' investors want to be rid of Gates. It is claimed that together they own 5%. In neither article are the three named. That speaks volumes.
It suggests to me that if we knew who thet are, we'd be able to workout their affiliations and realize why they are so adamant Gates should go. My guess is that it would have less to do with the benefit to the company and more to do with the hoped for benefit to selected investors. My guess is that there's one of two things playing out.
One is that the call is, or is a front for, Carl Icahn. After the debacle at Dell I imagine his brand is toxic and being connected with a call like this it would never surface.
The other is that some investors are upset that other investors have been given a place on the board and the try the hustle for a place.
Disgruntled investors have an opportunity to voice their disquiet every year at the shareholder meeting. Or sell their holdings.
By the way, despite the news published (by largely California bloggers) my holdings of Microsoft stock has risen 20% in 8 months. That's a petty good performance anyway and given the terrible press they receive all the more remarkable.
Investor like me, who like the way Microsoft is shaping up and have seen good returns from a stable company, are not going to brook AC investors trying to rock the boat for their own, unstated, ends.
A sad indictment on us
For me the saddest part of this story is what it says about us (or the demands of our economies). To me it says that across North America and Europe (I've no clue about what happens in Russia or China) we are content with a 'choice' between just two products. Apple and Samsung in this case. The other choices are ridiculed. What about RIM and Microsoft?. Coke and Pepsi - what about Sprite and Dr Pepper. Dr Pepper even has to run self-deprecating adverts with the tag line "What's the worst that could happen?" Sure there are some also-rans but we seem able only to want to join one of two camps (or are told we should because all our friend do and we don't want to social lepp). They must be losers if they want anything else. 1 billion people and the best we seem to be able to have is choice between this one or that one. The other options go bust. That's not really a choice is it?
Re: He's right.
No only is he technically right, in my opinion he's right to use strong language. In a world where any regular person's comments are drowned out by well funded 'PR' blogging. He doesn't have the funds of many of the Linux contributors so it's cute trick to make sure his opinion is heard.
This is paranoia. Observers of the tech world getting in a tiz. The NIST process is open. The standards process is open. If you have doubt, you are able to review the standard (and the contemporaneous competing ones), talk to the researchers involved (mainly university professors at the time). You can look to see if any of the many people involved identified problems with the proposed standards at the time (and remember, not all are friends of the US).
Not only does this kind of commentary blacken NIST (and they are fair game) but also the character of the many researchers around the world who were and are involved in designing these standards. If I were such a researcher, I'd be having a word with my lawyers now about the potential for a suit for defamation to authors of posts like this.
The saying is that hindsight is 20/20. I'm sure the long lens of time has revealed potential weaknesses in algorithms designed 20 or more years ago. These are algorithms used like no others so any weaknesses are going to become more evident especially as the computing power to test them increases. But this is not evidence of conspiracy, its evidence that technology progresses and that no one is perfect.
If you have an axe to grind, why not get a PhD in Mathematics with a specialism in number theory and contribute your algorithms to the world. Oh, you can't? It's too difficult is it? Oh, I see, much easier to bray like a sheep and throw shit from the sidelines.
Re: What a Spin!
@ SergioG Let me throw almost ALL of your post back at you. You criticize AO for not including numbers and methodology details then add none of your own. So after a lengthy missive readers are none the wiser. Why didn't you include the numbers? Maybe because 'they happen to be convincing!' to AO's perspective?
The BBC is a train wreck of an organization (and I include the Trust here too). The 'study' amply illustrates the point. Why would a review like this be handed to just one person? The 'methodology' fails right there. Regardless of the validity (or otherwise) of Mike Berry's approach, it is impossible to escape the criticism of bias of any report that is written by one person or group of people. Scientific studies are conducted and then results are subject to verification by independent researchers. But this is a funding limitation. In an ideal world, multiple, parallel studies would be conducted to see if they all reach the same conclusion.
In this case there is no material funding limitation. An organization that routinely overpays severance to it buddies, that squanders millions and millions on buildings it doesn't need or projects that are out of control does not need to be concerned about spending a few extra 10s of thousands to make sure it's reviews can justifiably claim to be beyond reproach. But that's not what happened. So the review is far from beyond reproach regardless of how this specific report was written.
We, the licence fee payers, cannot know the motivation of the Trust to handle the issue in the way they have done. But with reason we can be expected to apply a healthy dose of skepticism to the findings and reject them when they conflict with our own experience.
Re: re: Why would we have known about it?
@destroy Absolutely. Blowhard is not entirely wrong (who is) but there are many examples of UK businesses killed by union intransigence. The Leyland business was poorly managed but what a dreadful place to have been a manager. It died because union leaders progressed by bashing managers and what managers want to work in that environment? Only those which cannot be gainfully employed elsewhere.
Think of the Sunderland dock yards, once a leading builder of ocean going iron ships and now gone. Why? Because unions would not adapt their practices and accept welding as an alternative to riveting after WWII. The liberty ships had shown the viability and economy of welding but it would likely have meant job losses on Weir-side so were resisted vigorously. A classic case of winning the battle but losing the war.
Re: The code-ring on the golf course
But your root certificate doesn't need to be from Thwarte or Verisign or one of the other providers. The only reason for doing so is to have a green bar shown in the user's browser when they access your site using https. You are able to create your own certificate for free and ask users to explicitly trust your certificate and wear the initial "this site is not trusted" warning message as a badge of honor.
On the other hand, if you think this will drive potential customers away then it's your call. If you choose to go with a certificate from a root recognized by Chrome, Firefox, IE, etc. because potential customers will be more comfortable, you have to understand that it's you who is actively choosing to make the decision to put profit ahead of privacy.
We all do, but we don't have to.
Re: Seems pretty hard to make back the price of a $100 phone
Doug, you make it sound like its a crime for a company to spend it's income on expanding it's business. As though profits must be made. Why? Amazon don't hand out a dividend so shareholders wouldn't see any profit if any was made. And any profit would be taxable so a sizable chunk of those profits would go to the US treasury.
Instead that money is spent expanding the franchise which means handing the cash to employees (or people offering value added services) and supporting the huge army of business that are dependent upon the Amazon machine improving. What you see instead, is strengthening balance sheet.
This complaint about Amazon failing to make a profit was made two years ago when the 201010-K was released. At the time the stories were along the line "Amazon profit disappoints'. The stock price dropped. A closer reading of the 10-K showed Amazon investing in hardware so I bought and since the stock has risen 50%.
In the meantime the much vaunted Apple has tanked, it's stock price is among the most volatile. Oh, and though Apple makes plenty of profit, shareholders still see none of it because the Apple board doesn't want to pay Uncle Sam. Instead they invest in lawyers and tax advisers to keep cash in locations around the world. So your position seems to be: no profit is bad but shady tactics to keep cash away from shareholders and governments is good, right? Is that what you advocate?
Go read those economics text books and find out where it says it is imperative a company makes profit. Shareholders want it, governments want it, but what the incentive for a business especially one which is, essentially, family owned?
Oh, and by the way, I'm one of those who would welcome a free phone. I barely use my phone but in case my kids want to reach me or I need to make a call I have to put up with sky-high prices and a contract that doesn't get close to suiting my needs. There are millions of us. We don't wear labels, drive cars we don't need, eat at a place just to be seen or want Roll-Royce phones.
See there's the rub:
"located, operated, controlled and legally located somewhere with working data protection and privacy laws"
is beyond the reach of the US and UK governments
Bear in mind these companies are investing billions in hardware I'm sure they are keen that their invests are not going to 'nationalized' by a tin pot government. And then would that same government be able to resist the temptation (or Uncle Sam's cash) to look inside?
There are many places that you can put your data if you want it out of direct access by western governments. The problem is then that it's probably not secure anyway.
But more fundamentally, what great secrets do you have that you are anxious a government should never be able to see? If you represent a major bank or multi-national company maybe you've information you'd like kept secret, especially from the tax authorities, but you also have an army of lawyers to challenge any western governments that attempt to access your secrets (and also the ability to move it around). If you are not in this category then you must have reason to believe you are in some way special, that you are likely target for government intrusions. Or maybe you're just 'special'.
So Azure is OK because it has a feature that is slightly cheaper than the similar feature in AWS and has a different bell or whistle. The feature's PM deserves a pat on the back for their marketing efforts. The Article's author, not so much.
Perhaps. But judging by the sales, it seems people *like* the way Apple operates or, at least, don't object. Given how much more profitable it is to have your own successful ecosystem it would be irresponsible to their shareholder not to try an emulate Apple. Don't get me wrong, I have no Apple produce because, to me, they really don't taste good. But I were the CEO of a major software company I'd feel obliged to cover my butt on this one.
We've run our web site in US-East AZ C for 5 year and have not had a moment downtime that's not our fault. That's 100% uptime over 5 years. Whether this time or when the last apparent outage occurred we experienced no downtime at all as a result. We have used EBS since they became available. By comparison, our in-house kit fails regularly and our experience on Azure was not positive.
My conclusion is that the AWS infrastructure is resilient. No one can expect that NO problems will affect them, that's ridiculous. In this case a competent application administrator would have mirror sites and services in other zones if not regions.
So I think that some where there's a marketing department try to huff and puff some life into this moribund story.
AC @ 9:36 Be courageous, provide some comparisons (or links to robust comparisons). We've tried (and try) Azure, GoGrid and Rackspace to check prices for our needs. I'm not saying that AWS is a panacea for everyone but we've not been able to find a better price for our needs so far.
It's a dumb comment that conflate two issues. The implication of the comment is that rooted = insecure which is nonsense. The corollary of that is that there are no security problems in the software provided by a mobile phone service provider. What's this? Amateur night at El Reg?
So the subject is the hardships of the unimaginably poor and you're choosing to take a pop at Microsoft. How desperate are you?
First article I've read on The Register which includes an actual CIO and even though I suspect this will have been a heavily edited article it still sums as "not in your lifetime - especially at Dell".
I really hope The Register will stop with this BYOD campaign. For me it highlights an ignorance of business and corporate governance. What if every other article is by an author who really equally as ignorant about the respective subject matter? Another perspective is that BYOD is just business and that The Register is merely taking someone's shilling. Though I hope not because it propagates a view that is anti-thetical to good corporate governance.
I've another possible explanation
BT introduced Infinity widely during the period. With us they 'offered' Infinity at our existing rate (£13/month for 75MB/s who would refuse?). And I'm sure there are many who thought the same thing.
However come time to renew the contract the price shot up to £28. No thanks. Even worse the service would drop out every few minutes making impossible to watch on-line content. To be fair, if a laptop was under the stairs directly connected it was OK but if it was connected via the new hub's wireless connection it just didn't work. Now, talk about customer service. "Yes your connection is fine". No wasn't not.
So we're with VM now and everything is rosy at the moment.
Re: Downward spiral
It's all relative. We've just moved back to VM because BT is terrible and because it's expensive.
The Microsoft bashers and IP freetards just can't help themselves. The usual complaint about the existence of IP is when it is used by trolls 'who don't produce anything'. In Microsoft's case, they've been in the mobile phone business for 2 decades and actually produce things - even things to do with mobile devices. And because they've been in the business for years longer than either Apple or Google or Samsung (Samsung used to produce phone to order not on its own account) they've given thought to the software needs of the mobile device and patented them.
So what's the complaint in this article? It seems to be that because Microsoft is not the market leader they are should not allowed to benefit from the patents they applied for and were granted a long time before Google even contemplated a mobile operating system. That because Microsoft has only 5% market share it's years of research into and development of mobile device features it should be denied the legal benefits of its work.
My guess is that the biggest contributor to Microsoft's licensing income is Apple. In my view Apple have been innovative in their marketing but have few technical innovations. From what I can tell Apple innovation appears to be limited to rounded corners. So it gladdens my heart that the fanbois are probably substantial contributors Microsoft's fortunes.
Usual crap arguments
So not only do we have to pay a tax to the BBC luvvies to the detriment of a fairly competitive landscape, they now want to be in higher slots so they can distort the market more completely.
Disclosure: I make no bones about wanting to be rid of the BBC in its current form. Public service broadcasting does have a place but not supported as it is by a specific levy. There are those who do not want adverts, and bully for them. Let's create a BBC that operates a subscription service for those who don't want advert supported content so there is an alternative, commercial option. Then when that choice is priced. Then we'll be able to see if the advert freetards still want to be advert free.
No regional analysis
The article presents no regional analysis except to point out that 88% of activations are in the US. My reasoning processes conclude that Apple remains strong in its home market but desperately poor elsewhere.
This lack of regional analysis is a bit of a theme. In another post I saw today, which essentially bemoaned the 'fragmentation' of Android, there were many statistics but none about the use of devices by region.
A recent edition of El Reg featured two articles:one about Microsoft; one about Google. Both were from your Californian correspondents.
Microsoft's earnings down on slow Windows sales, Surface RT bust
Has Redmond lost touch with consumers?
Google exhales another $14bn revenue figure
Mountain View Chocolate Factory continues production of gold bars
Just consider these articles and there titles and sub-titles. Then consider the facts. The post about Microsoft bemoans that Microsoft's earnings are down when in reality they were up: it's just that they were not up as much as someone in 'Yahoo! Finance' thought they should be. Yes, that august body Yahoo! Finance.
Meanwhile, Google are sh**ting gold bars apparently though the reality - even made in the article - is that their earning are up quarter on quarter but down year on year.
Of course it doesn't matter. But it does say something about the The Register that what appear to be misleading articles are being propagated without any correction or comment.
So this article is based on the premise that the august body that is 'Yahoo! Finance' has any clue about what Microsoft should be earning. I'd like that they were earn 100Bn but my preferences don't count. Their numbers were up at a time when they've launched a slew of product in the face of an astoundingly hostile press and their revenue are up. Just not as much as some lard arse in an office someplace wanted to make up. Oh, and that august institution is part of a company headed by a person who used to work for a company that used to see Microsoft as enemy number one (I imagine that title has passed to Samsung now). No scope for bias there then.
It's a bit harsh to say they missed the tablet market. Beside Apple was there a market? Dell tried valiantly with Streak but so did many others. Really, it's an iPad market with some other trying to copy.
Its also a bit harsh on the mobile side. Most phones are bought from the telcos along with a contract. Dell is not a telco. Which other PC vendors have a thriving mobile business?
Yes, they've missed the 'cloud computing' though they have an offering. But besides Amazon, who is making a return on their cloud investments? Microsoft? Google? Oracle? No one. This is a market made by Amazon. They have a good understanding of the needs of their customers just like Apple has a good understanding of theirs.
Privately, Dell can do lots to transform the copy but not if the game is me too.
While few would disagree that stupid interview question are just that, I'd like more detail on the numbers. There is no way some kid with no college education is going to walk into Google and do *anything* meaningful wrt, say, Google Glasses. If they flunked their education because they were coding Java 24x7 or were replacing truant parents may be there will be a role. If they flunked their education because they were playing games all the time, not so much.
Any education tells an interviewer more than just what they know. If they have a good transcript it indicates they are likely to be organized and able to get things done.
But Google isn't the company it used to be. It used to be a geek paradise with projects to change the world. This aspect still exists and I will be astonished if groups involved in these pursuits did anything other than hire the brightest available (and have devious means to select from the pool of candidates).
However a much bigger component of Google is now line management, sales, testing, code maintenance, cleaning, making sure the lights are on in the data centers. That is, all the mundane jobs that every company has to get done. I can see that a college education is not needed for many of these jobs. If these roles are now the majority of hires then an elitist selection policy is not going to be appropriate in the majority of cases though were it was relevant it probably still is.
If not, and Google is now hiring less capable individuals into the creation of future products, this should be disclosed in their 10-K filings with the SEC because it's going to have a medium term impact on the ability of the company to deliver revenues.
Any project that has not been done before is likely to be late and over budget. Almost all software projects fall into this category. Building a bridge? Done it a million times. However the first suspension bridges were enormously expensive and, early on, had a habit of falling down. Of course that's forgotten now because the cost is absorbed and the existing templates and practices are stamped out all over the world.
Likewise, any project that requires software that's been used before cost peanuts by comparison because you are installing and configuring existing software that's known to work.
If it's not been done before the costs of any project are unpredictable because users are *useless* at specifying what they do and need. Any specification is from 50,000' and, except in a small number of cases, there's no detail (from the point of view of the person implementing the intended system). Of course the implementer doesn't know that until well into the project when they, too, have become domain experts. But that's usually too late.
Think about specifying getting up and going to work. *Everything* you think about saying will be at the 50,000' level. Even though you are expert at getting up every morning (well maybe not after a skinful the night before) and going to work you'd not have a clue how to specify that seemingly simple task so that, say, a robot could also do it in any circumstance. Everyone reading this request for a specification, if they offered anything at all,would not account for any, let alone all, the things that could go wrong.
Meanwhile the budget and timescale will have been fixed. So cut the IT guys some slack and focus your ire on users who do not have a clue and managers who fail to recognize that reality.
I agree with AC @1:52. Plus our experience is that AWS is consistently less expensive. We've been using AWS for about 6 years and always look at the options for saving trying to use Google and Azure but they are not there. At least for us. Because we have been, and are likely to be, long term users we've taken advantage of the substantial discounts available when you commit to a three year deal. It's true you are locked in and can't then take advantage of price reductions but the commitment has saved us a lot of money. We calculate that the upfront cost is paid off after 9 months and that for 27 months we're saving 30%/month.
No advertising warning
Why is there no adverising warning on 'articles' like this? Big Table has been around for years so there can be no concept of Google forging (present tense) anything. It was forged years ago. Revamped maybe. Rebadged, perhaps. And no mention of the key/value based storage service in Azure which has been there since the service was launched.
Ray seems to want to use this example to score political points and its disappointing the Register let him get away with it.
If there is a concern about Arquiva having a monopoly surely the correct thing to do is refer them to the competition commission. If the one in the UK is too cosy with the industry, then the one in Europe.
As that has not been done, presumably there really is no monopoly to whine about or there are no other private companies which believe there is profit to be had installing and maintaining masts in the UK (a prime example of a commodity). So what's a government to do? If providing the operators the cash would result in a bitchfest and there are no other companies that have wanted to invest in infrastructure for the UK how else can the government help get the job done?
And still got a tether
I'm sure it's all very impressive but it will be much more impressive if the tether doesn't have to be there, it has circuitry on-board that allows it to navigate to useful locations autonomously, it can re-fuel, it can carry a useful payload and has the has power to do all these things.
I'm sure it's sufficiently impressive to those in the know but ability to fly has been known for a long time. Equally, high frequency oscillations driving systems are not new. However an efficient and small scale fuel system that has high energy density and is able to be replenished from the environment would be something to write home about. If it's small thing that can sustain flight while tethered not so much, in my opinion.
With 30 seconds of effort I can see from LinkedIn and the IBM web site that Mario has an advanced degree in Mathematics from CalTech and that he's been working for IBM and Hitachi since 1985 researching error correcting codes and data reliability all that time, for organization for whom this topic is going to be important. Clearly someone who is going to have more that the usual familiarity in the field.
You choose to suggest that the way to understand this paper is to solicit the opinions of your readers rather than, say, calling or writing to Mario directly. I'm inclined to agree with your assessment of your cerebral limitations though perhaps for different reasons.
Iain, this topic appears in the Register with monotonous regularity. My pet theory is that Apple's cash pile promotes the idea because Apple has no access to the enterprise. So I'll try again to point out the flaw in the argument: only CEOs and CFOs with a penchant for time behind bars will allow BYOD.
The Sarbanne-Oxley legislation, passed by the US Congress in the wake of the Enron scandal, threatens the freedom of CEO and CFO explicitly for breaches of fiduciary duty. The use of computers is just one of many tools that threaten such a breach of that duty and one very obvious reason why companies require that devices connected to the corporate are secure, securable and auditable.
No CEO or CFO who values their freedom is going to allow some untrusted employee to bring a personal device to work and connect it to the network that is not under corporate control. Of course no device is 100% secure. But the CEOs and CFOs that allow access to corporate resources from personal devices leaves themselves open to charges of gross negligence and many years in a Federal Penitentiary as well as class actions by shareholders.
It'll never happen
The NHS is a collection of unions, some real, some masquerading as professional bodies (BMA, RCN, etc). All unions and guilds know that knowledge is power and sharing knowledge diminishes that power. So I expect a protracted proxy fight over 'privacy' over the coming months and years with every union member involved learning to spout a standardised list of privacy horror stories .
Re: An excellent result@NomNomNom
@AC 16:02 If you'd studied the subject in question as you claim you would not need to post anonymously. If you want your comments to have any weight you need to come out and present your credentials and your published work so readers are able to work out whether you have something genuine to say or not.
Also, throwing stones while complaining about thrown stones is a bit old testament. Smacks of a religious tone and reduces your credibility even further. Come one, come out, tell us who you are.
Re: Nordic spruce
@AC 08:51 We do not "manufacture" cars in Blightly. We assemble an assortment of parts that come in boxes from the far east. Like a glorified IKEA de-flat packing but for cars.
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