Re: Get Informed
And don't forget to include the chlamydia bacteria that seems to help everything along...
305 posts • joined 17 Aug 2010
Having trudged through all the comments to this piece, can I thank this correspondent for reading what was said and understanding the implications (unlike nearly every other comment in this thread).
If this set of policies gets anywhere near reality, then this is the first time (that I can recall) that Government is seriously contemplating setting out (or nailing their colours to the mast of) a set of data interchange standards - rather than mandating this company or that software.
This is, of course, what they should have done this the first time around. By defining data interchange formats and the data to be transferred, it really could open up competition and innovation. This is what Government should be doing, not picking and choosing software for the clinical users.
Existing players will be dragged (probably kicking and screaming) into compliance and they will have to shape up or go under. Having seen the lack of capabilities and UX design of some of the "market leaders" in this space, I can only hope that some enterprising SMEs will take the incumbents on and show them how it should be done.
P.S. NHS number as a unique key - who'd have thunk it?
In the 1980s I wrote a rather nifty builders merchant system that worked just like that, complete with "pick lists" generated from the "files" of data (not just a simple price, pages of info about it as well) - meaning that the user did not have "search" by typing out words (although they could, but rarely did). The merchants absolutely *loved* it.
And what about yer standard menu system on the browser you are using to read this? Isn't that a set of "pick lists" bringing up "files" (especially if one considers the history or book mark pages)?
Personally, I would have thought that hiring a few clue full 50 or 60 year olds to give the under 30s helpful advice and erm.. "guidance" would also have helped. Apart from anything else, the CS's power structures are aged based and having some wet behind the ears junior oiks (as the upper reaches of the CS would see it) telling CS mandarins what to do, or how things are about to change rather radically, simply would never have worked.
Trying to do it again with "New GDS" will also fail unless it has a structure and credible people in charge that speaks the senior CS's language and is prepared to engage with them on that basis.
That means hiring technical people of substance, experience and age that are actually worth the sorts of salaries that were being paid out.
I have just started using 43" 4K TV as well. It is cheap (compared to the Dell 30 incher I had before), works well, has better colour than the Dell (once it's set up - it's rubbish out of the box). It only really has one downside - it's a huge flat screen telly (37" x 21") being viewed from 2 feet away. What this means is that it is soooo big that I have to move (albeit it slightly) so that I can focus properly on the sides of the screen - me being a bit myopic and of the older persuasion.
I know ElReg has wondered what a curved screen telly might be for, but using one as monitor would definitely be a genuine use case. So I am waiting for the OLED curved TVs to come down in price, then I can retire this one to the living room for the occasional house guest that actually wants to watch live programming.
Have a look at this example. You can get a £10 cheaper version, with some legs at each end instead of the chunky central stand, from Amazon. You'll also need a modern graphics card that can do HDMI 2 @ 60hz to drive it.
In fact, it is likely the stuff that kills you, rather than the hydrogen and the low temperatures - assuming one would ever want to go there. Hydrogen Sulphide is nasty enough to have official dosage and emission limits in laboratories. And it isn't very much (now 1ppm over an 8 hour shift with a 15ppm max). LD50 is 800ppm and one breath may be enough at that level.
A better solution would have been exim, seeing as this resource exhaustion tale has all the hallmarks of a sendmail shop. In the 1990's a friend of mine was running a forum mailing list for a very well known computer software company and was suffering the same sort of problem caused by sendmail's 1 msg then 1 delivery -> 1 process to deliver it "paradigm". A bit of a problem on a forum with 5000 people on it. He changed to exim and the problem went away.
To me, probably being of a certain age, the key distinction has always been: how much data and in parallel, can one shove through the computer at a time. "Lots continuously" = "mainframe", "quite a bit, but rather bursty" = "mini computer", "user interaction limited" = "PC".
So the designation "mainframe" has always hinged on the number and bandwidth of connections between the CPU and the storage devices and other streaming peripherals. While processors have got faster, I don't think either the interconnects or the hardware that handles them inside the "mainframe" have kept up to the same extent. Indeed the tendency to land stuff on buses, as opposed to direct connects closer to the CPU(s), will always add contention and slow dataflows down.
A "mainframe", then, is optimised to get the largest number of "streams" of data into, munged a bit, and then out of the unit as possible. Just because CPUs, discs and their interfaces are faster, doesn't alter that basic distinction.
I wonder just how far IBM can go before someone notices that they are just buying a (very) large and expensive mini?
Perhaps you were thinking of ICL CAFS disks. Essentially the drives had 16 heads per arm instead of just the one. The algorithms in the controllers were also designed to aid the searching of content addressable data, but it was the fact that there were 16 channels of streaming data available that made the thing blindingly fast.
Is the size of (each) of the disks in a pack. Until well into the 1980s the standard physical size of one of the disks (in a stack) was 14" and about 3/16" thick and made of reasonably high grade aluminium. And they were not light. The capacity of disk changed, but the size didn't until sealed "Winchester" disks became a "thing" that would lead to the small drives that we have today.
Imagine one (or even a salami slicing set of them) flying at anything (fleshy or hard). Makes Oddjob and his bowler hat look like a ineffective amateur.
The hypocrisy is breathtaking. Here we have a judge ordering a complete shutdown of a website all over the world, yet when a Canadian judge orders Google (et al) to remove links to content, it goes to a US court to argue that it doesn't apply outside Canada.
I think you will find that it is only "incomprehensible" (or more accurately "unconscionable" ) to large US corporations that want to hoover up all this information because of "money". But it is probably true that parts of the US population also couldn't give a shit - neither, it has to be said, do I.
Very delicately put. I would characterise more forcefully. WDC has a forked decision to make: either it buys Toshiba cheap - because it paid too much for SanDisk - thereby becoming a serious full scale player in the flash market, or it is sold to someone else. If that happens, that they scale up instead - and WDC whithers on SanDisk's diminishing niche flash and its own spinning rust businesses.
And Toshiba don't want to sell to "anyone", as this includes Chinese or allied companies and Toshiba (or their government) don't want to transfer technology in that direction. Nobody "suitable" seems to have the money that Toshiba want. And notwithstanding all this, don't under estimate the fact that WDC think that they can get the flash business on the cheap - especially given the current political climate in the US.
I suspect Toshiba would have sold if WDC had made a sensible offer. Now it could be "not WDC at any price".
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