313 posts • joined Thursday 15th April 2010 18:30 GMT
Re: What is this article supposed to be?
Evidently AC you don't know much about software or computing.
Why the f**K would a toolbar vanish be dependent on the f**ng hardware??
Yes, there's lot of different hardware out there, but with abstraction layers, device drivers, an application which sits on top of the operating system (in a layering model) the hardware should have little effect on the application (save for performance).
Re: Power fail behaviour?
I think you've missed the point on this one. If the SSD is in a laptop then the laptop has a battery and the user will be given advance warning of the battery going flat and so issues a controlled shutdown to the laptop, and the hard disk is shut down cleanly.
if you've got the SSD in a desktop, then as the user it's incumbent upon you to have a UPS feeding the PC, so what's the problem? What problem are you trying to fix? There's little incentive to put batteries or supercaps into SSD disks.
According to Wikipedia, Cryptofiler isn't used for classified information.
Re: @TkH11: Right to down play
The MetOffice does not provide false figures. How people use the information provided by the Met.Office is down to the users of that information. If the users don't understand that predictions (and more so longer term predictions) carry uncertainty, then that's down to the users, you can't blame the Met.Office for that.
You can't blame the Met.Office for actions users take, users have to be responsible for their own actions.
The climate models that were in existence around the year of 2000 or so, their output only gave close agreement to reality (observational data was then showing an increase in global temperature) is if a manmade element of CO2 was added. This was a clear sign that manmade CO2 was a key factor in the global climate change. That's what the meteorological community knew at that point in time.
You make decisions based on the available knowledge you have at the time. What you can't do is 10 years later go back and say "They messed up, it's their fault, they got it wrong", which is what you are trying to do.
I am aware of that argument, but I actually thought the figure was a fair bit lower. But, may being of a certain age, the recollection is failing.
In fact I once saw the prediction accuracy figures for the Met. Office NWP models and it was up in the 90's percent, so you sir, are talking BS.
Re: Completely lost
Let me tell you something about Met. Office staff; I've met some.
They are decent honest people. I've worked in many different sectors, meteorology being one, defence being another, telecommunications, investment banking being others.
Met Office scientists are very humble, very decent honest people, very trustworthy with far higher integrity than many other people I've have the pleasure of meeting over my career.
The idea Met.. Office staff are manipulating data, pursuing personal agenda's, creating conspiracies is complete nonsense. For their level of intelligence, for the sheer hard work, the skill involved, for their academic qualifications, most are paid peanuts, they're not in it for the money, they're in meteorology because they find it interesting.
Re: Another ignorant MP
No they haven't.
If you create a forecast for a particular date and time, if you revise that forecast and republish it, then the previous forecast is invalidated, it is superceded ! It has to be, there is no other logical viewpoint.
You can't have two or more different forecasts for a point in time which are 'current'.
The idea they still kept the old one is rubbish.
The Met.Office forecasters understand this, they're very proceduralised (if that is a word) : they have to be, they produce daily forecasts for the aviation business, both civil and military. You can not cause confusion by having multiple current forecasts, there must be NO ambiguity. Airlines, airports, the military have to make decisions based on those forecasts, as time passes to towards a particular prediction point in the future, the Met. Office will issue revised forecasts as they rerun the NWP models several times per day and it's incumbent upon the airlines, the military and other users of the forecasts to use those newer (and hopefully more accurate) forecasts. That's business as usual.
Every forecast that is made by the Met.Office has a TOI : Time of Issue to prevent the sort of confusion you are talking about.
Re: talking of don't have a clue
As someone that has had close association to the world of meteorology, AC is right.
The best models the Met.Office have got are the short term forecast models (chemical vapour dispersal model (what used to be called NAME) and hurricane track prediction models), but all of these are easily verifiable, they can run the model, make the prediction and then compare reality to the prediction, so they know how accurate these models are (or not).
The behaviour of these meteorological phenomena last over a time period of days, so by gathering observation data the models can be verified, modified to improve their accuracy.
But climate, over hundreds, thousands of years is an all together very different story.
And the output of these models is being used by government to make long term strategic decisions.
The accuracy of the model is going to decrease over the run time of the model. The short term forecast models out to 3 days, 5 days become significantly inaccurate beyond the 5 days.
The Met. Office know this (and have known it for a long time) but only recently started trying to communicate to the public in the form of 'uncertainty' expressing percentages.
Anything beyond 5 days, take it with a pinch of salt.
So asking, requiring the Met.Office to produce accurate forecasts for years ahead (albeit it is an entirely different model, not just running the short term forecast model for a longer run time) and then basis an entire strategy which affects tens of millions of people is somewhat tenuous and questionable!
You are being arse raped for electricity costs because of the so called free-market economy, the commodities markets! That's the problem, not the cost of running the Met. Office or money being spent by the government in wanting to enourage in green technologies.
Re: Not the Met Office's fault.
That's not entirely right. Whilst flood defences along one river will protect one town it may result in a higher than normal river level height which may affect another town further downstream, so I am prepared to accept there is an element of truth in what you say, but the fundamental problem is the change in the nature of the rainfall events, which are a) longer in duration, b) over a wider area, c) higher in rainfall rate (expressed in millimetre's per hour).
I think if you're going to mention the incident with Fish, then you have to describe the cause. The cause was a lack of observational data back in that time. It's not appropriate to blame an individual forecaster for getting it wrong. Technology today means they gather a lot more observational data and feed that into the numerical weather prediction models (NWP).
You obviously don't understand the full scope of what the Met. Office does.
Forecasts aren't primarily for the benefit of the public, the Met.office's primary customer is the military.
They're owned by the Ministry of Defence. They have a number of primary customers including air traffic control organisations, airlines, Army, Royal Air Force, environment agency, water companies, local councils, even supermarkets.
The idea that you could simply give them abacuses is naive to say the least - and by implication cease the provision of forecasting services.
The Met.Office's mathematical numerical weather prediction models are some of the best in the world, you are right, often they do get it wrong, that can be down to many factors, but you fail to understand the impact of chaos theory, in that the weather can fall into a chaotic state and not be predictable.
I'm surprised at the attitude on here of supposedly intelligent people: so we don't fully understand the weather and our climate and we can't construct 100% models, so let's not even try? Let's not spend the money doing it?
Fortunately, mankind has never adopted that attitude,
Right to down play
The Met.Office doesn't fully understand our weather or our climate. It can't do, and it probably never will.
We can only to a reasonable degree of reliability predict the weather in the UK out to 5 days in to the future, a number of years ago, around year 2002, that was only 3 days. We haven't made that much improvement in gathering the data, in understanding the subject enough to create accurate forecast models.
So they get it wrong, big deal. It happens. It's time to accept that the Met.Office doesn't fully understand it. It's work-in-progress. In my opinion, the Met.Office is right to down play their predictions, they know there is a significant amount of inaccuracy, unreliability and that is not the Met.Office's fault: it represents where science, the subject of meteorology is today. We evolve, we learn, we develop. That's life.
>The Met Office has a duty to present their analysis of the data in a robust way.
As scientists they do have that duty and I am sure they do present it. There was simply one episode where scientists didn't disclose all the information they had and this has resulted in considerable damage to the reputation of climatologists.
But there is a difference in presenting empirical data and making interpretations, predictions based on that data. The average member of the public doesn't understand the complexities in climatology or meteorology and when a prediction is made they interpret it with absolutely certainty, but any scientist, mathematician or engineer, (any many other intelligent people) know that a prediction means there is some degree of uncertainty that goes along with it.
Weather and climate have many cyclical behaviours, some we understand and some we have only recently discovered. If the period of a cyclical behaviour is short enough compared to the lifetime of man then we have a chance to capture enough observational data to a) observe the behaviour and b) analyse what is causing it.
The problem is, we already know that a number of behaviours have periods in terms of thousands and tens of thousands of years so whilst it is ok presenting empirical data, we have to be extremely careful with making predictions based on prediction models which have been constructed based on observational data when we don't fully understand the behaviour.
Re: But, but, but...
I have been known on occasion (I keep it secret) to read Daily Mail online articles, (but I claim not to be purchaser of the newspaper). DM journalists are entirely clueless about anything scientific or technical. It's truly shocking. I think I only found one article that was 100% technically correct out of many, and I'm quite sure the journalist didn't write it, it must have been prepared text that was given to him. The article was so detailed about DNA I am quite sure that many of the DM's readership were left baffled by it.
Anything that can put the DM in their place, and correct their sloppiness is welcome in my opinion,
They don't have a clue, but why should they refund the tax money that has been spent?
That tax money has been used to try to improve mankind's understanding.
Are you incurring a financial loss because mankind doesn't understand how our climate works?
Re: Completely lost
Two points: 1) You're making an assumption (which I can't even say if it is true or not), that the increase in rainfall is equally offset by longer dry periods so that the yearly rainfall amount remains the same.
Only the passage of time will show if that assumption is true or not.
2) What the Met.Office person said is quite valid, the variance is increasing. We are experiencing rainfall rates which are higher (expressed in millimetres per hour) then we typically experience, and for longer periods of time, which results in a higher rainfall accumulation figure (in millimetres).
It is appropriate to examine the monthly rainfall figures and the greater rainfall will seen from those figures. However, it is possible that the yearly average remains the same, but see point 1 above.
I have 35mm slides going back 20 years, and some on Fuji Velvia 50. Some have been scanned and people are amazed at how good a quality they are. Don't assume that digital is always better.
Re: I had
I remember spending ages thinking about what computer to buy, I was using an Apple 2 at the time, and wanted something better for games, but I wanted to be able to program on it too. I liked the 6502 processor better than the Z80 so a pre-requisite for me was a 6502 based machine, the BBC micro didn't come out until a bit later. I chose the Atari 800XL and never regretted it. Graphics and sound were really quite impressive, the way the graphics chip handled display list instructions, mixing of various modes and lots of clever effects could be achieved was very impressive. Sound was good, being multi-channel and being Atari, a good selection games for it and it had a proper keyboard, something which the Spectrum and many of the Sinclair models lacked.
Re: My atari was broken
I had both (and still have one of them somewhere) a 600XL and an 800XL never had any problems with them at all. I did have a problem with the cassette player: Atari 1010 (if I recall!), the buttons were quite weak and one of them broke, got that replaced no problem (from Argos I think).
The Commodore 64 used a 6502 processor, which along with many other processors of that era were 8 bit (Z80, 808x, 6502, 680x) and had a 64KB address space, so to have to 64KB of RAM meant some form of bank switching had to be employed. The ROM had to fit into the same 64KB space.
Re: We're all genius programmers here
I'm one of the sad gits that can still remember hexadecimal operation codes (OpCodes) for the 6502 8bit microprocesssor, and different OpCodes for the different addressing modes (13 there were from what I remember) for a given instruction. Now is that sad?
When days we didn't have an assembler, used to hand write the hex values in the memory using a monitor program.
What fun (and bloody hard work) those days were! But we were young, and it was a learning experience and it didn't seem like hard work.
Re: Poor premise, unless you have read all the code in the world
Interesting concept: write code and then remove it. I don't think I have ever done anything like that in 15 years of coding, I might remove some comments but even that's rare. I just do it right! Good design, keeping it nice and simple, using top down design techniques (and a mixture of bottom up where appropriate) .
Re: One just needs to judge code correctly
There is a definitely a problem with the project managers that don't have the balls to stand-up to the customer and tell them "We can't do it in that timescale", but they don't. They commit to a timescale which they know they can't achieve, and guess what they can't achieve it, so in order to hit the deadline, they cut the testing, they cut the documentation reviews - you wouldn't believe the standard of documentation that goes out to our customer (and internally too), they don't have time to do things 'properly'. They deliver crap code, throw it over the fence to the support organisation and then they end up with defects being present.
The PM's just refuse to accept the adage that the later in the development cycle the problem is fixed the more it costs.
Yep, definitely the leadership that is nearly always a big problem. Where I work they don't have project managers - in the traditional sense of the word - they have 'technical project managers' so you'd think from that they'd be technically skilled wouldn't you? Afraid not. One of the clowns - has no less than three degrees, all technically related: engineering and finally a masters in telecommunications, yet doesn't know the first thing about technology. Everything he touches he f**ks up.
We're a multinational so we try to run teams which are fragmented over the UK and fragmented across the entire world..yet we can't even have a decent telephone conference call because we place a single telephone with speaker phone capability in to a conference room which is ten metres long and then wonder why we can't hear the people on the phone. We can't even get development to work successfully in a single room because a) lack of process and b) poor technical leadership, but the powers-that-be want to outsource to cheaper countries like India.
One of the development team was headed up by a team leader that didn't have any software development experience! As if that was ever gonna work.
I have never seen such a dysfunctional development organisation, version numbers on code? Nah, we don't want to do that so we don't it.
Re: So true
'Cleverness' comes about through the developer being immature! They're trying to show off how clever they are, when in reality they're not thinking about how the code is going to be maintained.
I have covered extensively development and production systems with 15 years development experience and several years of running production systems and what I see is a number of developers that do not understand - and even one I would so go as far as to say refuses to understand - production systems and the configuration controls around it.
The developers like to tinker, they like to jump on to the prod systems change things without any kind of change control without even notifying the support organisation they're logging on and doing things.
Now, put that in to a multinational context with testers in India jumping on to production systems here in the UK and the problem is significant.
Having worked in various industries including : telecommunications, investment banking, defence + others the best technically capable people I have come across without any doubt is in the defence sector.
Many programmers are mediocre, and a way to deal with this is by way of process. Having good processes in place, design reviews, peer reviews, configuration management procedures and all the other good stuff and important,crucially having a development team leadership which actually has experienced served in development and has the balls to make people follow the process.
Re: Gallium arsenide has been talked up for decades now
When I was in integrated circuit design 20 years ago we had Gallium Arsenic ASIC chips with up to 30,000 logic gate, made using photolithography not using MBE. To draw on each individual transistor would be unfeasible. The yield rate of the chips was terrible, and that was one reason why they were so damn expensive.
I'm surprised Apple didn't already employer ASIC designers and use other manufacturers, that's been the main stay of the IC industry for decades. FPGAs which other people have mentioned, may not be the way to go, if you want the most transistors on a die, if you want to keep the cost down to as low as possible, you don't want to waste space on the die (cost is related to the silicon area), if you want the lowest power consumption and highest speed then you opt for a full custom design mask-programmable technology, not FPGA. All depends on production quantities of course.
Re: Swedish laws are weird -- a court can decide that you cannot appeal against it?
UK courts have the right to decide if an appeal will be allowed. They can decide that at the time the judgement against the defendant is made. If the court doesn't make a decision on this either way, then the defendant has to request permission to appeal, in which case (in civil courts and I imagine the same process applies in criminal courts), the opinions of the judge in the lower court are taken into consideration by the appeal court making the decision whether or not to grant an appeal.
I've been involved in trying to overturn a biased judge's opinion that an appeal should not be granted. It's difficult but can be done.
Once the decision to allow an appeal has been granted by the appeal court, then the appeal needs to be prepared by the defendant and submitted to the appeal court. Then the court hears that appeal.
It's standard practice in UK courts. It's actually clearly laid down in the rules as to what can and can't be be done.
I don't have any such concerns over the morality, working on MoD projects has provided me with some of my best experience and taught me a lot about how to design, develop systems properly.
Admittedly, the systems I've developed aren't really designed to kill people. If I wasn't doing it, somebody else is going to do it, all that will happen, in the event many of us engineers turn down the work, the salaries will increase according to the supply and demand principle and somebody is eventually going to take the job, so the job still gets done and the weapon systems are still developed; so the way I see it, by adopting an 'ethical' standpoint it doesn't achieve anything and you just miss out on some valuable and great career building experiences.
Re: As weird as it is...
What's the worry over doing an update to a rover vehicle on Mars?
Think about it. Use a low bit rate to reduce the error rate. Store the entire update in a staging area on the target platform, CRC check it. If CRC does not match, it's simple, don't install the update!
Ground station on earth sends a message to the rover "Have you received the update error free?" Response message: "No, please resend block 27 of 2052". Block 27 resend commences. "Have you received block 27 correctly now?" Yes. Go ahead and update.
No real problem here at all. Biggest problem with be possible interference from radiation from the sun and cosmic radiation in space.
It's easy enough to test the update process on the ground on planet earth first.
VXWorks is regularly used in space craft, and it's so well tested, reliable, it just is not like Windows at all! It's a proper real time pre-emptive multitasking operating system that just bloody well works: Windows can't multitask properly.
There was a spacecraft that did experience one single issue with VxWorks, it was down to a semaphore issue, a way of communicating, controlling execution threads, they uploaded through the millions of miles through space a patch for it, so it's designed to do these upgrades, but rest assured they're extremely rare to do because the entire mindset around VxWorks is very different to Microsoft and the development of Windows operating systems.
Don't even think about comparing the reliability of Windows with VxWorks.
Re: 2 Gig?
You only need lots of RAM and ROM space if:
a) you don't know what you're doing
b) you're running Windows operating system.
I wrote real time embedded apps on a microcontroller in C with 128 bytes of RAM, I kid you not. Most RAM I ever had was 1.5KB. ROM space, if I recall, was something like 16K words with each word being 14 bits.
Re: ouch! ouch! ouch!
Having a 5amp PSU doesn't mean to say it's going to run at 5amps when you connect it to your battery.
It's going to depend on what the internal resistance of the battery is at the time and no there will be protection circuitry to either limit (or regulate) the current and if fast charging a battery, a temperature sensor attached to the battery to prevent it getting too hot (and presumably exploding).
Your 1 amp phone charge is probably also a p**s poor design, probably sourced from China and inefficient in power conversion from input to output, with the resultant heat that is generated.
Stupid idea. USB was never designed for carrying power, leave it well alone. The connector format is totally naff anyway, it's too symmetrical, often you have to look at the connector to ensure you can plug it in.
What happens when someone takes a 100W power supply terminated in a power USB connector and inadvertently plugs that into a standard 5V peripheral USB connector on say a laptop..BOOM..bye bye £600 laptop. Naff idea,.
Re: Not surprised
2G fall back? What's the heck is that? Fall back to GPRS data at 14,400 bits per second (and true performance is dependent on the number of timeslots on the signal).
Have you ever tried using data over GPRS? Have you actually tried to download a web page at this speed? I bet you haven't. It is unusable.
Re: Not surprised
It's never acceptable for a supplier to call their customer's a liar, and coming from a customer facing department? ! As for him calling them monkeys? In one case their insult is aimed at an individual - him, in his case, he's not insulting an individual he is insulting the organisation.
So I don't see your challenge to him calling them monkeys is right.
@mark12 sueing for unauthorised access
>Yahoo can sue them also for unauthorised access to its systems.
No, I don't think they can sue. If they want to sue there would have to be a contractual arrangement in place between Yahoo and News International, and Yahoo would have to demonstrate that a) there was a breach of that contract and b) that Yahoo incurred a financial loss as a result.
Neither are true.
However, unauthorised access is a criminal offence, and it could be down to Yahoo to carry out a private prosecution for the criminal offence - in the even the British Police and Crown Prosecution Service dont' do it.
usual incompetence from a government organisation, BAU then
Given the ineptness of the Met. Police last summer, I'm kinda not suprised that such a useless bunch of idiots are still using software from 30 years ago, I'd love to know what they're running it on, Vax PDP11's? I bet they've kept them nice, not unplugged any cards for a few years, and probably just about kept them running (but I'm baffled by the disk packs, they'd never still be working today)
I can't see how anyone today can be running 80's hardware opertionally!! Must be also impossible to get spares.
he *is* an arse
HIs biggest enemy is himself as evidenced by his surname. His life seems to be littered with misdemeanours. Honesty is not in this guy's blood.
Supply and Demand Model
"No. Say thank you to Stelyos of EasyJet fame. Automatic dynamic pricing algorithms based on demand."
That dynamic model is valid and acceptable for goods which are being manufactured, it's the simple supply and demand principle. The greater the demand, the price goes up because there's not enough manufacturing capacity. And you can't overcome that lack of capacity particularly easily or quickly.
But for electronic media which is being downloaded? Come-on, let's get real.
It's simply an algorithm to rip people off. The concept is no longer valid when it comes to downloads.
The UK doesn't appreciate engineers, IT people. Society doesn't.
When I went to see friends in New York some years back, they were mega-impressed with the field in which I worked in, satcoms, and they introduced me to others and they all wanted to know what I did for a living, and were impressed; here in the UK, no-one apart from fellow engineers understands it or is remotely excited by it.
Being in engineering, IT you are looked down upon in the UK. And salaries are crap.
Can't see all the point of the detailed analysis. Just to prove that there isn't that much difference between the cars?
Would have been a far more interesting article if you went into more detail about the solar panels, the technology,.
@Richard Taylor 2
Not entirely true. I've worked with restricted docs which certainly aren't lunch time menus, and which I certainly would regard as sensitive, but I'm not going to tell you what kind of docs they are.
@AC, RIM NOC
I disagree with your use of the word NOC. NOCs don't route traffic. The NOC technically is the processes, people and technology which enables the service provider to assure their services. And this will typically consist of fault management systems: the applications and infrastructure to support that, trouble ticketing systems, performance management systems and so on.
Now some companies co-locate their NOC with operational network equipment in the same building, indeed the servers used to support the NOC can even be located in the same racks as the comms equipment but fundamentally the NOC does not route 'service' traffic.
Answer: because that's how the network and/or service designers designed the infrastructure.
There's nothing wrong with having a large amount of traffic routed through one switch so long as it has the capacity to cope and there is sufficient redundancy which clearly there isn't.
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