* Posts by juice

180 posts • joined 16 Nov 2010

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Stephen Elop and the fall of Nokia revisited

juice

Re: Why can't Elop take credit for his achievement?

Wow, that was a lot of downvotes :)

Anyhow, I did debate clarifying my point about "linux on a mobile" - I was thinking of the various efforts such as Firefox OS and Ubuntu Phone, where the OS is/was a lot more front and centre. But my lunchbreak was nearly over and I didn't figure it'd be that controversial ;)

Beyond that, I don't think I've said anything above and beyond what jillesvangurp has expanded on.

Maemo (and the hardware that went with it) was a nice idea, but popped up at the wrong time and in the wrong place; Nokia simply had too much financial and emotional investment in Symbian to do anything significant with it. And as a result, it suffered from the traditional commercial open-source fate of being dumped on the community once the official funding runs out. I remember having much fun filing bug-reports/support requests while trying to find the right combination of drivers/config to get an external bluetooth keyboard working - and I still get emails about the Maemo community elections, to this day.

Also, if memory serves, I did debate buying an N900 at the time, but decided against it; between the smaller screen and clunky physical keyboard, it felt like a step back from my trusty N800. Instead, I think my first touchscreen phone was an LG Cookie, since it was ridiculously cheap (at the time) on PAYG; by the time I migrated onto Android via Sony and HTC, the writing was very much appearing on the wall for Nokia's eco-systems.

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juice

Re: Why can't Elop take credit for his achievement?

Not sure I agree with that one.

The N900 (and the earlier models, such as the N800, which I used as an ebook reader for years) suffered from the same issue as their consumer models, such as the 5800 (which I also owned): Nokia thought of the mobile phone as a shrunk-down PC, and the UI reflected that with scrollbars and Windows-style scrolling - albeit with a stylus instead of a mouse.

I even remember nokia adverts at the time promoting this as a good thing!

Meanwhile, Apple, Google and their ilk had taken lessons from the PDA market - make things simpler, make them finger-friendly.

Also, the N*00 range was never really intended to be a world beater - Maemo was a skunkworks project and never really received much love, no matter how nice the hardware it ran on was. Plus, it was based on Linux, and to date, no-one's really been able to make that work on a phone - at least, not for the mass market.

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Elon Musk offered no salary, $55bn bonus to run Tesla for a decade

juice

Sounds like Tesla's standard Smoke and Mirrors approach...

If you announce enough new and interesting things, they tend to help distract people from the old and potentially broken things. All you have to do is to keep finding ways to produce more of the new & shiny...

After all, Elon Musk doesn't need any more money from a personal perspective, and I'm guessing that it'd be just as hard to funnel more money into new pet projects, given how many he's already got on the go.

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Why did I buy a gadget I know I'll never use?

juice

I hate throwing things away...

Not because I'm an excessive hoarder[*] - I actually quite like the feeling of dumping large quantities of obsolete tech in the local rubbish dump's skip.

However, from long experience, I can pretty much guarantee that as soon as said tech is definitely beyond all possibility of rescuing, I'll find a need for it. Similar applies to the various bits of craft junk stored in overly large tupperware boxes.

Admittedly, the opposite applies to needle-nosed pliers and stanley knifes. No matter how many I purchase, these will always vanish into thin air at even the merest suggestion that they could be useful...

[*] Well. Not hugely. Ish. Much. *ahem*

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Hot chips crashed servers, but were still delicious

juice

Laptop function keys are fun...

Pretty much all models have special actions assigned to the function keys - volume controls, external screen controls, etc. Usually you have to press a key (e.g. "Fn") to activate these special actions.

However, on one particular model, these "alterative" actions were enabled by default *and* one function key controlled the wireless functionality.

I'm sure you can guess the rest. "My laptop isn't working - it's the end of the world!". And then I reached over and tapped the function key...

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'I knew the company was doomed after managers brawled in a biker bar'

juice

Over in light industry...

A relative used to work in a steel fabrication plant, which was in turn located in an old victorian mill. Lots of old, unconnected pipes, which led to the occasional prank where they'd dump some oxyacetylene into a pipe and then set it off with a lighter.

Over time, the scale of the pranks progressed, especially when they got into competition with the company next door. It started with milk cartons, progressed to taped up cardboard boxes and they finally called it quits when someone started to drag in a wheelie bin...

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Voyager 1 fires thrusters last used in 1980 – and they worked!

juice

Here's a thought...

Has anyone built a Voyager emulator? Potentially, you could model the entire machine and then slap it in a simulated solar system...

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iPhone X: Bargain! You've just bagged yourself a cheap AR device

juice

Haven't we just been around this?

https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/11/13/apple_leads_on_augmented_reality/

And as I said over there, while AR has a number of niche use-cases, it does not have a general use-case. Certainly not one which is compelling enough to make people slap a pair of goggles on.

(Mind you, it makes for a mighty fine gimmick - at an arena gig last night, I was genuinely impressed last night by how many people were taking snapchat-enhanced selfies. Therein lies at least one money-making route, it would seem...)

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Augmented reality: Like it or not, only Apple's ready for the data-vomit gush

juice

AR, VR, 3D, 4K, Blu-ray, motion controls...

Each one has arrived on a grand wave of publicity about how it's the next big thing... and have ended up serving a relatively niche market.

When it came to 3D, people didn't want to wear clumsy glasses when sitting on the sofa, and even cinemas have pretty much given up on using it as a "premium" experience gimmick; my local Cineworld only has one 3D film at the minute (Thor:Ragnarok), and the 3D in that film was added post-production. Even Nintendo conceded that 3D added little to its games when it released the 2DS.

Similarly, people don't want to wear a VR helmet, and the experience only really works for scenarios where you're in a vehicle.

Blu-ray never caught on to the expected extent, partly thanks to the fact that (upscaled) DVD quality was generally Good Enough. And while 1080p has caught on pretty well, it's perhaps ironic to note that it's Good Enough for most people when compared to 4K screens.

Motion controls never really caught on with the core gamer demographics, and quickly went the way of the dodo when the freshly arrived 'casual' gamer demographic got bored of Wii Sports and went back to whatever occupied their time before the Wii arrived. It's a bit of a shame that Microsoft didn't pay attention and insisted on bundling the Kinect v2 with the Xbox One!

And now we have AR. Again - after all, it's something that Nintendo vaguely tried to push with the 3DS, and it's also shown up in other places, such as Google Tango or Ikea Place (an iOS app which lets you experiment with placing virtual furniture in your rooms). But fundamentally, the value-add for AR is just as low as it was for 3D and VR.

Even Pokemon Go - the big success story mentioned in the article - has seen it's popularity dwindle drastically since launch. Admittedly, there's still millions of people playing it, but are they playing it because it's AR or because it's Pokemon? I suspect it's the latter - and that it would have been just as big a hit without the AR features.

But hey. Engineers get to build fun toys, venture capitalists get to burn through large cash piles in hopes of riding the next Big Thing and some useful things do occasionally come out of all the R&D spend. So it's all good, right?

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Better filters won't cure this: YouTube's kids nightmare

juice

What's happening here...

Is the production of automated junk to try and game automated filtering mechanisms and earn money.

In other words, it's spam. Exactly the same spam as you find in email, search-engine results, App Stores and the like. The only real difference in this context is that we're dealing with consumers (aka children) who generally don't have the ability to determine the difference, and content which previously used to only be available from curated sources. Whether that was a parent picking a book from a shelf, or a media provider such as the BBC.

As such, the solution is implicit in the stated problem: if you're concerned about uncurated content, then don't use services such as Youtube in their "raw" format. Instead, use curated content from places such as the BBC. Even if that does mean *shock* paying for the service!

Equally, it sounds like there's a relatively easy solution for Youtube which would allow them to keep balancing on the increasingly thin line between hosting content and publishing it: give content channels the option to only allow the automated "next" mechanism to pick from content within the channel.

At that point, it's still the responsibility of the content channel to ensure all content is suitable for the given audience. And there's some potential for a mechanism like this to be abused. And of course, it potentially reduces profits for Google, since they can't pick the "best" option for the next video.

Then too, whatever Youtube and Google do, it's still fundamentally the parent's responsibility to ensure that they've picked content which is appropriate for their personal/family/religious/societal preferences and rules.

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Pixel 2 tinkerers force Google's hand: Secret custom silicon found

juice

Why not...

just take a battery pack?

Personally/anecdotally, my S7 Edge comfortably lasts a full day, despite the fact that I use it as an ebook reader, VNC client, facebook time-waster, etc.

Things significantly improved with the most recent major update (Nougat), too - a lot of apps which were pointlessly sipping data in the background have been given a stiff talking to.

If your phone isn't lasting a full day, then either it's being hammered with call/data usage, or the battery is on it's way out!

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Commodore 64 makes a half-sized comeback

juice

Looking at the games list...

I strongly suspect that this is just the DTV inside a new box, and with a couple of USB ports bolted to the side.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C64_Direct-to-TV

I've still got a DTV in a cupboard somewhere...

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Sacre bleu! Apple's high price, marginal gain iPhone strategy leaves it stuck in the mud

juice

Fair point...

"What's 80 quid a month and 150 up front when your last contract was 70 quid a month and 99 quid upfront?"

Except it's probably going to be more than a tenner.

At a glance over at Carphone warehouse, the iPhone 7 Plus is 699 quid sim-free; the most sensible contract [*] is around £43 with around £150 up front.

Interestingly, the Galaxy Note 8 is £869 sim-free and the contract/up-front costs are pretty much identical despite it being £170 more expensive. Presumably Samsung and/or the phone networks are offering a heftier discount?

Any which way, it suggests that contracts for the iPhone X will be around the 65 quid mark once the initial feeding frenzy subsides, which isn't that much of a jump.

[*] Unless you want to lob 660 quid at them upfront to get it down to 13 quid a month, though at that point, I'd be inclined to scrape a few more coppers together to buy the phone outright and then go hunting for the best sim-free deal...

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SanDisk's little microSD card sucks up 400GB

juice

Re: 400 Gb on your little fingernail....

5mb? Tha were lucky!

Back in t'day, I had a ZX Spectrum which loaded data from tape; a C15 would hold up to around 160kb of data, or approx. 80kb per side. A C90 was absolute luxury, though you really needed a counter on your tape player to figure out where each program was.

Fast-forwarding past the C64 and Amiga, my first PC was a 486 Viglen with (I think) a 50mb HDD. Oh, the joys of running doublestacker over this to try and increase the amount of space, as well as the hypnotic patterns of the defragger...

At some point, I acquired an 850mb 3.5" HDD; sadly, this exceeded the 540mb limit set by the BIOS in the PC. IIRC, there was a software patch, though some drives had a physical jumper you could set to fool the BIOS.

A while later, I worked for a large company which was clearing out vast swathes of obsolete tech. Among a few other things, I picked up a SCSI card and a mahoosive 2GB HDD - at 5.25 double-height, it was literally the size of two CD drives duct-taped together. I ended up with this huge bronze lump sat atop the PC case, as there was no way it'd fit inside!

In some ways, this makes me even more appreciate the fact that I can fit the sum of all human knowledge[*] onto my fingernail. However, I do also slightly miss the challenges of the old days, when PC technology was still a bit of a wild-west arena...

[*] Wikipedia is quoted as being around 160gb in size, though this is for text only. Still it'd leave a bit of room for some light reading!

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China claims to have turbine-powered drone carrying 200kg payload

juice

How effective can commercial-grade drones actually be?

Fundamentally, it feels like there would be a lot of issues around converting a commercial drone into a weapon.

First, navigation. GPS can be spoofed, downgraded or even disabled altogether, and is no real use against moving targets. Remote steering is possible, but can be jammed and is subject to lag - and unless you have some form of swarming technology, you need one warm body per drone. In theory, you could give a drone optical sensors and image recognition technology, or even have someone plant a beacon for a drone to home in on, but even those are subject to spoofing and jamming.

Then, there's range. A quick glance at Google indicates that commercial drone control range generally tops out at around 1km - though there is mention of one with a 7km range. Equally, flight time tops out at 15-30 minutes. I'd guess that this gas-turbine fuelled beastie may be capable of much more, but even then, it's unlikely to compare to a dedicated missile platform.

And there's more: commercial drones aren't designed to have a low radar profile, they're not designed for flying in adverse weather, they don't have systems redundancy, they don't have any defensive capabilities, they only have short range collision avoidance sensors, they're unarmored, they're not EMP hardened, etc.

Some of these things can be addressed as technology improves, or even retro-fitted on, but fundamentally, there's significant differences between the capabilities required for military and commercial activities.

Personally I think commercial-grade drones will take on a much smaller scale role - e.g. acting as disposable, short range scouts during infantry actions - if you're not too worried about making your presence known, they're perfect for city clearances and building searches. It's even possible that they could be used as beacons for their larger and more heavily armed military cousins...

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Reality strikes Dixons Carphone's profits after laughing off Brexit threat

juice

Re: Hong Kong Rules OKAY!!!!

To be fair, CW is currently selling a sim-free dual-SIM android phone for £47. And if you can fight through the filtering options on Amazon, there's something similar for £36.

As ever, you pays your money and you takes your chances; for me, the camera and screen size are the most important features, so I tend to stick to the higher end of the market via a 24-month contract to make the cost slightly less painful.

If those weren't a criteria, these days I'd be quite happy with whatever budget Android device was on sale at the time; quality has come a long way from the early android-landfill days!

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juice

"Explain to me again how the clueless CEOs of such companies even pretend to justify their ludicrously huge salaries when they cannot predict obvious effects of events that will impact their market"

TBH, I think the issue is more about business-politics rather than business-nous: bad news has to be couched as gently as possible to minimise impact to the share price and potential bad news will be handwaved away in the hope that nothing will actually happen until after the current incumbents have cashed out their stock options.

Anyhow, as other people have noted, the mobile-phone industry is in much the same place as the PC white-box market found itself a few years ago. Technology has become commoditised and differentiation between both product-versions and product-vendors is increasingly limited, while OEM manufacturers are undercutting premium brands and driving profit margins down.

Admittedly, the above impacts Android devices more than Apple, but I suspect even Apple will find themselves having to trim their profit margins as the quality of mid-range Android devices continues to rise.

Personally, I'm using an S7 Edge, and from what I can see, there's pretty much no point in moving to the next generation. E.g. the S8 has a slightly better CPU/GPU, a slightly larger screen, slightly longer battery life and exactly the same physical camera technology. None of which really screams "You need to upgrade NOW!!11!".

I'll therefore probably stick with my current phone until the 2-year contract runs out, by which time I'm hoping that there'll be something more interesting; if not, then I may just drop back to a SIM-only deal.

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Atari shoots sueball at KitKat maker over use of 'Breakout' in ad

juice

They've gone batty...

So Atari[*] are suing Nestle for a commercial which intermittently shows something vaguely resembling the game Breakout [**]?

So:

1) It's not actually a playable game, nor is it something which is being commercially sold

2) It's clearly intended to be a comedy/parody

3) There's the best part of 40 years of prior "infringement", from 1980s magazine type-ins to commercial releases such as Arkanoid and the tutorial for pretty much every game-development kit ever made

Overall, I can see this bouncing out of the courts faster than a speeding tennis ball!

[*] Or as RPS recently put it: the creature wearing the skin of Atari...

[**] Said commercial can be viewed here: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2017-08-18-kitkat-accused-of-copying-ataris-breakout

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Foot-long £1 sausage roll arrives

juice

Double the fun...

But the Pound Bakery has been doing two six-inch sausage rolls for a quid for aaaages now. And as far as greasy tubes of pink protein wrapped in pastry go, they're pretty decent, especially when still warm. And it's a bit easier to save half for later... [*]

OTOH, their veggie sausage rolls are a bit odd; where most veggie rolls taste pretty much the same as a normal one, PB's have a distinct vegetable-y flavour which isn't entirely to my liking...

Either way, I've got a road-trip with friends at the weekend, so I may pick up one or two of these new monsters from Morrisons, purely for the comedy value!

[*] I'll leave the floor open for anyone wanting to make jokes about how many inches you can take at a time, etc, etc

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This surf-and-turf robot swims using ribbon-like fins. And it's floated for US Navy approval

juice

Eeling along...

The main thing this reminds me of is the wonderfully named Black Ghost Knife Fish - a member of the electric eel family and quite spectacular to watch. Essentially, it has a single "fin" running underneath it, which it oscillates in much the same way as I'm guessing that robot will.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gimQjPkvsNIv

It also means that unlike other fish, they're able to move backwards very easily, by reversing the oscillation...

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Apple exits music player biz by killing iPod Nano, iPod Shuffle

juice

Re: It took until now?

"u can get a cheap phone and an SD card for a fraction of the price and it will be better in pretty much every single way"

Not entirely true, at least from my perspective.

iTunes is bloated and slow, but it handles playlists very well, and the integration with the iPod hardware/software means that sync'ing is quick [*]. It also facilitates 2-way synchronisation (i.e. I can tag songs on the iPod, and iTunes will pick those tags up); handy for eliminating unwanted songs from a playlist over time [**].

Then too, the non-touch iPods have another advantage: physical buttons; you don't need to turn the screen on, nor do you even need to look at the device to perform basic tasks such as skipping tracks or increasing volume.

Plus, there's the form factor; even an iPod Classic is smaller than pretty much any modern phone. And it's certainly more robust!

[*] I have experimented with an iTunes->Android plugin, but sync times are ridiculously slow, presumably because the plugin has to physically review every file which is already on the device)

[**] I tend to dump albums/compilations into a playlist, and then filter the songs over time. Allegedly, MTP devices can also do 2-way syncs, but according to the Musicbee wiki, few if any Android devices actually support this feature

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juice

Back in t'day...

I can remember a friend having an MP3 player with 16mb of RAM. Yeps, RAM: if your battery died, you lost your music. Mind you, it was pretty much the same for the early Palm Pilots, if you couldn't swap the AAAs over quickly enough!

Either way, at the time I was happy with my Sony Minidisk player; in LP mode, you could get over 4 hours per disk and it could manage 30+ hours of playback (from a single AA battery!). It's a shame Sony tied the format down so much in the name of preventing piracy; didn't they learn anything from Betamax?

Anyhow, these days, I'm using a fairly bruised and battered 120GB iPod Classic; I bought it secondhand, 4 or 5 years ago and the battery still lasts for around 20 hours, so I've had my monies worth from it. Those things were definitely made to last - unlike the various iPod Touches it replaced; those seem overly prone to headphone socket failure. It may be a bit basic these days, but it can handle playlists, I can tag songs for deletion and It Just Works, to borrow the old Apple catchphrase.

If/when it does die, I may well pick up a reconditioned one from Ebay - one fitted with a new battery and solid-state storage will hopefully last for a decade or so, at which point we'll probably all have nanobots directly twanging the appropriate neurons in our brains.

Or something.

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Judge uses 1st Amendment on Pokemon Go park ban. It's super effective!

juice

"But now, a company far away can easily appropriate that park for their own uses with no permit at all. The result might be a very large crowd (just like with the concert) making heavy use of the park, interfering with local's use of said park, and if something bad happens, no liability for the 'organizers.'"

That scenario has been around for decades - see the old 90s illegal raves in the UK. Laws were passed in the UK to address that, and I'd expect the USA to have similar laws already in place.

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Repairable-by-design Fairphone runs out of spare parts

juice

Re: 4 year life?

"It's cheaper to replace the entire thing with another second hand or an entirely new one. How do these parts sellers even sell anything with at least double the price a customer would pay!?!"

Because the cost of replacing the hardware is still cheaper than the cost of rebuilding your preferred/required setup on new hardware, especially in terms of time.

Admittedly, with things moving to "cloud" based sync'ing and storage, this is becoming less of a factor. But it is still a factor.

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Sorry to burst your bubble, but Microsoft's 'Ms Pac-Man beating AI' is more Automatic Idiot

juice

Back to basics...

The thing is, they've managed to get a "perfect" score on the Atari 2600 version, not the arcade original. And for all that the port was well received at the time, it's a crude and heavily cut-down copy.

Sadly, there doesn't seem to have been much analysis of the way it was coded, though there is at least one hack out there which improves the graphics (http://atariage.com/hack_page.html?SystemID=&SoftwareHackID=5). But I'd be willing to bet that the algorithms controlling the ghosts are entirely deterministic, unlike the original where a random factor was included in the algorithms controlling the ghosts [*]

Beyond that, it's worth noting that the AI was only responding tactically, not strategically. Which is fine for a game like Ms Pac-man: if you can put your death off long enough, you'll eventually reach the maximum score. It wouldn't work as well in a game where there a

re other criteria - e.g. in Defender, you have to survive, kill all the aliens and protect the humans.

So yeah. They managed to write an AI which could produce a tactical solution for a deterministic situation with only 4 negative factors (aka: the ghosts). It's pretty much the most basic proof of concept you could produce.

Wake me up when they manage to produce something capable of tackling Defender or something more chaotic such as Robotron or Bubble Bobble...

[*] Unlike the original Pac-man, which was entirely deterministic; there were even books written on how to game the algorithms!

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What augmented reality was created for: An ugly drink with a balloon

juice

Re: Wetherspoons now offer table-service via a phone app...

The gentleman in question was actually sitting in the pub and observing the results, but it's a good question - I'll have to take a look at the app at some point :)

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juice

Wetherspoons now offer table-service via a phone app...

So someone I know took great pleasure in ordering drinks to random tables. Much confusion all round. And free beer, so it's not all bad.

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User loses half of a CD-ROM in his boss's PC

juice

Back in the 16-bit days, the only form of portable media (in fact, pretty much the old media for the Atari ST and Amiga) was ye olde 3.5" floppy disc. And as impoverished teenagers and students, we tended to use the cheapest of the cheap. Magazine coverdisks were one source - I can recall people selling bin-liners full of these at markets and car-boot sales - but if you were feeling flush, you'd fork out the cash for a box of no-name disks from some far-eastern company you'd never heard of before [*].

Needless to say, quality control was an issue; aside from the usual plethora of read/writing issues, you'd often get issues with the protective plate not sliding open, or the disk failing to spin correctly inside it's sleeve. The best one I ever saw was when a friend enthusiastically hit the eject button on his Amiga, causing the disk to shoot out at a higher speed than normal; said disk literally disintegrated in flight, like an armour-piercing SABOT round...

[*] Much the same happened with the earlier 8-bit machines (magazine cover-tapes and no-name C90s - generally, the quality of the no-name cassettes was so low you could barely record audio on them, never mind the squeaks and squeals of a computer program. And then there were the budget VHS tapes as well; good luck watching anything you'd recorded on these, especially if you'd optimistically gone for LP recording; twice the duration and a quarter of the quality! Admittedly, budget CDs and DVDs were just as bad; there's nothing quite like picking up an old backup to find the aluminium peeling off...

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Drunk user blow-dried laptop after dog lifted its leg over the keyboard

juice

Back in the day...

I once spilled Yop (drinking yogurt) all over a Toshiba laptop - it was back when Yop bottles had a stupid pop-off lid, rather than one which screwed off.

Initially, it didn't want to boot, but it eventually recovered after I'd removed/cleaned the keyboard and then left it for a few weeks - I'm guessing some of the liquid seeped under the keyboard and needed to dry out.

Ever after though, a slightly sour smell of strawberries lingered around it...

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GiftGhostBot scares up victims' gift-card cash with brute-force attacks

juice

And there isn't a rate-limiter or captcha mechanism built into these websites because...?

Admittedly, rate-limiting gets a bit trickier if you're dealing with requests coming in from a botnet, but slapping up a captcha would seriously hamper this kind of trawling.

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'Clearance sale' shows Apple's iPad is over. It's done

juice

Re: As I have said a million times

Agreed. I've been after an A4-sized tablet for a while for reading purposes - I've got a lot of scanned magazines from the 80s I'd like to read, but there's a little too much squinting required on a 9.7" screen and widescreen tablets make things even worse - a 12" widescreen display is only 5.9 inches tall, or nearly 2.4 inches narrower than a piece of A4 paper[*].

Alas, the iPad pro is a tad too expensive to use for occasional archaelogical browsing. I do occasionally eye-up convertible laptops on Ebay, but they tend to either have archaic technology, or are increasingly also widescreen; at 16:9, I'd have to get a 17" display to be able to view A4 pages at their original scale, which in turn drives up the weight and lowers the battery life.

[*] Can we stop using old money to measure screen sizes?

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Git fscked by SHA-1 collision? Not so fast, says Linus Torvalds

juice

Re: That's not how hashes work

"Electron, what you post is nonsense. A 160 bit hash _does_ in practice produce a unique result for any given input (unless you spend 6,600 years of CPU time to search for two given inputs with the same result)."

160 bits make for a big number. A really big number, with lots and lots of zeros after it. And any halfway decent hash algorithm worth it's salt [*] will be designed such that even a tiny change in the input will produce a significantly different output.

However, 160 bits is not infinity. It's not even a googleplex. And if someone's deliberately trying to force collisions, you'd be foolish indeed to assume that things are safe.

Then too, assuming they're using the "1 GFLOP machine working for a year" definition of CPU-years [**], that figure of 6,600 years isn't as impressive as it sounds.

An Intel i7 can run at over 350 GFLOPs in dual-precision mode, while a modern GPU (e.g. Radeon RX 480) can theoretically churn out up to 5 TFLOPs in single-precision mode; the Tesla K80 used by Amazon for their cloud-computing back-end can churn out 8.74 TFLOPS in single-precision mode.

Then too, there's always the possibility of using distributed computing or specialised hardware - this type of problem is inherently parallelisable and bitcoin mining has shown how effective ASICs can be for this type of number crunching. Also, since the people most likely to want to force a collision are nation-states or hackers, they could well have access to a supercomputer or maybe even botnets - I wouldn't be surprised to see people offering collision-detection as a service, as more traditional profit streams continue to dry up (albeit with botnets increasingly being based on IoT low-power devices, there may not be many of these).

So, yeah. 160 bits is good. But these days, it arguably ain't good enough.

[*] sorrynotsorry

[**] http://www.gridrepublic.org/joomla/index.php?option=com_mambowiki&Itemid=35&compars=help_documentation&page=GFlops,_G-hours,_and_CPU_hours

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'At least I can walk away with my dignity' – Streetmap founder after Google lawsuit loss

juice

It's not about the technology...

Instead, the question being asked in court is: did Google abuse it's search-engine dominance to starve out Streetmap, rather than just competing on merit?

It has to be said, the "Objective justification" argument presented by Google seems somewhat strange ("In my opinion, I think I'm best for the job"?) - in fact, I'm mildly surprised there hasn't been any comparisons to the browser-integration debacle which led to Microsoft getting a slapped wrist from the EU.

Anyhow, coming back to the technology, and Streetmap in particular...

I have to agree that I remember mapping technology being clunky back in the day - but I can't say exactly when that day was, or which suppliers earned my wrath - or indeed, how much of it was due to browser technology and connectivity speeds being much more primitive.

Because, y'know: it's been a decade or more. And beer.

Equally, I can't really comment about how good Streetmap was versus Google Maps back in 2007 - as far as I know, unless someone's maintained a video archive detailing their functionality at the time, the only way to accurately compare their relative merits would be to borrow a Tardis and jump back a decade.

Finally, I'd note that while £300,000 sounds like a large sum - I'd love to have that landing in my bank account every month - but for an IT company, it's not actually a huge amount. Once taxes and overheads are accounted for, it's only really enough to fund maybe half a dozen staff.

In fact, I suspect Streetmaps never really stood a chance against larger companies like Google, who could throw far more resources at their implementation, as well as integrating it with their other offerings and technology, such as natural language processing.

Perhaps if they'd gotten some investors behind them early enough, or if they'd been able to build up some sort of patent portfolio, Streetmap would have done better - other companies such as TomTom and Garmin have found themselves in similar situations and are having to evolve. But I can't help thinking that Streetmap simply weren't in a position to scale up at the rate needed to compete.

6
0

Shocked, I tell you. BT to write off £530m over 'improper' Italian accounts practices

juice

Re: BT NextGenitalia (aka. Forward thinking C***ts)

"Best Practice? Nothing to do with best accounting practice regards Tesco."

I'm pretty sure that unless you're working for the Mafia, best accounting practice never involves deliberate fraud. The point I was making was that BT makes it very clear at all levels that such activities are unacceptable and will lead to dismissal and possibly prosecution.

I'll also (un)happily note that upper management can often have a different view on "unacceptable" when compared to the lower tiers of management - and often seem to get away with far more at a much lower cost than other employees would be allowed to do - but as I said above, in BT at least, everyone has to provide explicit annual proof that they're aware of the rules and regulations which pertain to their role. I may even still have some of my old printed certificate-of-completions hanging around somewhere!

""I'm guessing it was more a case of inflated numbers and stuff being rapidly shuffled between divisions and/or bank accounts to make things look good and keep bonuses high."

In my book what you have just written 'is' fraud/corruption. You seem to see this a "light touch" manipulation?"

No, it's still fraud and corruption. The point I was trying to make was related to the original poster's "how you don't notice £530 million going missing": it wouldn't have been a single lump sum which could be easily spotted by running =SUM(A1,A20) over an Excel spreadsheet. Instead, it'll have been lots of things overstated, understated, assigned the wrong depreciation rate, calculated using an incorrect exchange rate, unrecipted, double-charged and a dozen other things that will only be understood by a professional accountant with full access to the books and a thorough understanding of the company's processes and the applicable national/international legislation.

Apologies if that wasn't entirely clear!

In the meantime, it looks like the knives have been sharpened and a few heads are starting to roll, starting with the head of BT's Continental Europe division (aka the ex-head of BT Italy). Though again, as per above, I'd guess his leaving statement will be phrased to handwave as much personal responsibility as possible away...

1
0
juice

Re: BT NextGenitalia.

That's a wee bit unfair. This wasn't BT, this was a subsidiary *in another country, with a (presumably) very different and complex regulatory process* who appears to have been cooking the books. I'm guessing it was more a case of inflated numbers and stuff being rapidly shuffled between divisions and/or bank accounts to make things look good and keep bonuses high.

I've no doubt that people will be running around within BT doing damage limitation, but this situation is absolutely nothing to do with BT's practices in this country, nor does it have anything to do with the politics of Openreach and Ofcom.

Also, it's worth noting that BT's employees in the UK - including in subsidiary companies - have to undertake a mandatory set of annual training courses which make it clear that equivalence has to be maintained and things like bribery and corruption are completely unacceptable. Which may not stop people, but at least they can't claim that they haven't been explicitly warned.

You have to wonder if other large-scale companies follow the same best-practice. Such as Tesco, with their £326m accounting scandal...

[ObDisclaimer: I worked for BT, about a decade ago. I don't have any shares in them, though, which may not be a bad thing at present!]

3
2

Boffins explain why it takes your Wi-Fi so long to connect

juice

I don't suppose

Anyone's got a list of which router chipsets are the most reliable/fastest?

0
0

Fake History Alert: Sorry BBC, but Apple really did invent the iPhone

juice

Apple invented the iPhone...

... in the same way that Ford invented the Model T, Sony invented the Walkman or Nintendo invented the Wii. They took existing technologies, iterated and integrated them, and presented them in the right way in the right place at the right time.

And that's been true of pretty much every invention since someone discovered how to knap flint.

As to how much of a part the state had to play: a lot of things - especially in the IT and medical field - have been spun out of military research, though by the same token, much of this is done by private companies funded by government sources.

Equally, a lot of technology has been acquired through trade, acquisition or outright theft. In WW2, the United Kingdom gave the USA a lot of technology via the Tizard mission (and later, jet-engine technology was also licenced), and both Russia and the USA "acquired" a lot of rocket technology by picking over the bones of Germany's industrial infrastructure. Then, Russia spent the next 40 years stealing whatever nuclear/military technology it could from the USA - though I'm sure some things would have trickled the other way as well!

Anyway, if you trace any modern technology back far enough, there will have been state intervention. That shouldn't subtract in any way from the work done by companies and individuals who have produced something where the sum is greater than the parts...

5
1

Soz fanbois, Apple DIDN'T invent the smartphone after all

juice

Apple may not have invented the smartphone...

But they pretty much set the mold by taking the existing technology and infrastructure of the iPod, adding a highly polished and well designed UI, and then integrating everything with network-agnostic functionality.

Back when the iPhone first launched, people were still thinking of smart phones as miniaturised computers - or at best, an upgraded PDA - and designed the UI and software accordingly. So, apps had scroll-bars which needed to be physically clicked and dragged with pixel-perfect precision, which was generally only feasible if you had a stylus or sharp fingernails. It' was all clunky and clumsy, especially since many devices still used single-touch resistive touch-screens and often sacrificed screen-size in favour of an awkwardly small physical keyboard.

Conversely, Apple ditched the physical keyboard and built the UI from the ground up to use capacitive multi-touch, with little bits of auto-assist technology built in everywhere. And to quote the old Apple Marketing slogan, It Just Worked - as long as you were happy with the functionality Apple was willing to give you.

Then too, Apple had some other advantages: the iPhone used the same connector as their iPod line. This meant that there was already a reasonably large third-party ecosystem out there (e.g. powered speakers, recharging docks) and the cost of buying replacement cables, etc was low. Also, you could share cables/battery packs/etc between your devices and you could charge via USB. And if you did want to use your iPhone for music, it had a 3.5mm headphone jack, unlike most other mobile phones at the time, which would at best have a 2.5mm jack for a mono earpiece

(And yes, there's an irony there, given that Apple has now ditched the 3.5mm jack. And to be fair, manufacturers like Nokia and Sony-Ericsson had fairly standardised power connectors, but these didn't transmit audio and they only sold cabled wall-warts, so if you did want to recharge via USB, you had to track down third-party cables, sometimes of highly dubious quality)

Finally, for all that iTunes is looking very long in the tooth these days, at the time, it was leagues ahead of the garbage supplied by other major manufacturers at the time (Sony, Nokia, etc), which were often unstable/buggy or hamstrung by politics. Sony in particular were bad for this, presumably because the media division ranked higher than the hardware division; the minidisk in particular was one technology which could have made a much bigger impact if they hadn't been locked it down so much to try and prevent music copying.

The use of iTunes also had a further impact, in that it provided a standardised and relatively simple way to push software updates to an iPhone, improving performance, stability and features. This was something other manufacturers simply couldn't begin to do, thanks in no small part to the fact that there was often network-specific elements embedded in the OS.

And iTunes also had a further, unexpected benefit, in that it offered a way for people to easily download - and pay for - new applications to their phone. Everything I've seen/read/remembered suggests that Apple initially failed to realise the significance of this, despite the fact that even basic games like Nokia's Snake had become a part of popular culture. Still, in time, iTune apps actually became a major driver of iPhone sales, thanks to effectively-exclusive titles such as Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja and Doodle Jump.

Mind you, for all that I admire and recognise the impacts of the iPhone, I've never actually owned one: they've always been too expensive, especially if you wanted extra storage and by the time I could justify buying one, Android phones were giving better bang for the buck, as well as offering far more flexibility - varied screen sizes, expandable storage, replacable batteries, widgets, etc.

2
0

Blue sky basic income thinking is b****cks

juice

Haven't we just had this rant?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/10/18/basic_income_after_automation_thats_not_how_capitalism_works/

7
0

Chap creates Slack client for Commodore 64

juice

Bang those bits together, guys...

I seem to recall people doing similar with a ZX Spectrum[*] at the Manchester Play expo a few years ago - I think it was either for Twitter or IRC. When all's said and done, you're just using Ye Olde Machine as a bare-bones terminal.

[*] Admittedly, as this was a Sinclair machine, it was probably done with a lot of bodged parts rescued from landfill and was at risk of crashing if there was too much wobbling. We'll have none of that freshly organic artisanal rubbish here!

1
0

Basic income after automation? That’s not how capitalism works

juice

Re: Where to start...

To be fair, I was thinking more historically, but even more recent wars have had something of an impact - according to the ever-reliable Wikipedia, up to 80 million people died "[including] 19 to 25 million war-related famine deaths". That was 3-4% of the entire world population at the time.

Then too, it was significantly worse at a country level - some (e.g. Poland) suffered 15%+ casualties.

Any which way, war sucks.

2
0
juice

Where to start...

As badly written articles go, this one is... quite badly written. Where to start?

First, the entire article is based on the strawman that a basic income policy is only intended to address a shrinking job market. However, there's far more to it than that: not only does it reduce inequality and poverty (pleasing the left) and reduce government bureaucracy overheads (pleasing the right), but it also leads to more entrepenureal activity (pleasing both). After all, if you have a guaranteed economic safety net, you're free to experiment and take risks that would be unthinkable otherwise. And this isn't just a theory: this effect has been seen in many of the pilot schemes carried out to date (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_income_pilots) - in Madhya Pradesh, "The study also found an increase in economic activity as well as an increase in savings, an improvement in housing and sanitation, improved nutrition, less food poverty, improved health and schooling, greater inclusion of the disabled in society and a lack of frivolous spending".

Dismissing the concept as being just "charity" is therefore both foolish and misleading - as is the claim that it would "not be progressive or emancipatory".

Then, there's the shoe-factory example. There's an underlying assumption here that there's an infinite market for shoes - i.e. if you make 200 pairs instead of 100, you can sell all 200 for the same price as the original 100. In practice, the market will become saturated sooner or later, and then you'll have to either drop your prices or reduce your output. Either way, that shop-floor worker will lose out, as they'll either get fired, work less hours or get a reduced wage.

"There's no correlation between how burdensome and how well-compensated a job is". "Burdensome" generally isn't factored into compensation calculations because it's irrelevant (and often subjective, to boot). A manual job may require some degree of physical fitness but often requires little in the way of training or experience, so there's a very large number of people who can do it and the laws of supply and demand kick in again.

"The principle of production increase over leisure increase applies independently of the type of job in question". It does up to a point - the point where supply exceeds demand. At that point, you either scale back, start making a loss or end up with a large chunk of unsold/unsellable inventory - which essentially also means taking a loss.

Then, there's the claim that there will be new jobs to replace the old jobs. However, the current industrial revolution is different to previous ones in at least one important way: it's happening a lot quicker, and it's affecting many more economic areas. After all, a lot of it is being driven by software, and new apps and updates can appear virtually instantaneously across the world. Take Google Maps for an example: it's eliminated the need to keep a physical map in the car, and it's getting increasingly better at identifying and routing around traffic jams. So there goes the paper-map industry *and* the traffic-report DJs. Along with everything else that can now be handled by a mobile phone - checking your bank balance, taking photos, booking hotels, ordering food, checking mail, etc. There goes the bank-teller, the camera-manufacturer, the people on the phone and even the computer manufacturers...

Admittedly, people are using technology to create new jobs for themselves - t-shirts, 3D printed cosplay accessories, self-published media, etc. Sadly, the people I know who do this are generally making little or no money. Because with technology being so cheap and easy to use, anyone can do what they're doing and the rules of supply and demand have come into effect once more. However, having a basic income would give them more freedom to experiment, innovate and differentiate themselves, and therefore increase the revenue they earn.

It's actually worth looking at some of the classical civilisations to see how they handled over-production and over-population - Egypt, India, China, etc. Generally, what you ended up with was a heavily striated society with very limited movement between layers and increasingly complex social models and policies - such as the imperial examinations in China, where you had to study philosophy, poetry and even horseriding and archery. They also tended to have either low productivity or some form of resource-sink, such as the Great Wall of China or the Egyptian funeral industry. And in the long run, they also tended to be dominated by more efficient and less striated civiliations - the Romans, the Mongols, the British empire, etc.

Of course, there's always another approach to dealing with over-population: going to war - not only does it reduce your population (and that of whoever you target), but it distracts the general population and you also get to spend resources on equipping and training your troops. Win-win, except for the people at the sharp end of the axe.

So personally, if a Basic Income offers even the slightest possibility of avoiding a striated society or war, I think it's something we should be spending a lot more time looking into!

19
1

LG’s V20 may be the phone of the year. So why the fsck can’t you buy it?

juice

My last phone was a G4, but when it came to upgrade time, I looked at the G5 and jumped over to a Samsung S7 Edge. Not that there was anything specifically wrong with the G5, but the add-on technology seemed pointless and the S7's specs generally had the edge.

I passed the G4 onto a friend, and then things got a bit complicated, as it stopped working a month or two later due to the "reboot loop of doom", which turns out to be a well-known issue caused by component failure, to the point where LG has actually agreed to fix all affected phones regardless of warranty.

So. A bit of a pain, but at least we could get it fixed for free - I volunteered to help with this, as my friend's not technical. However...

I sent an email to their website, asking what was needed to submit a repair request. After two weeks, I got back an automated email apologising for the delay and asking me to resubmit the email if I still needed something...

In the meantime, I'd raised an RMA request, only for that to sit untouched for far longer than the 48 hours claimed on the website. I eventually rang them, only to get through to a human on an overflow line, who advised me that there wasn't anyone to take my call(!). The day after, I finally managed to get through to someone who could deal with the issue, and he finally got the process moving. He advised me that we'd have to post the phone without any additional items - i.e. no SIM card, memory card - even the back-cover and the battery should be removed.

Fair enough. Then, I received an email for one of those Inpost automated drop-boxes, printed off the return label, packaged up the phone by itself and popped it into the drop-box after it had scanned the appropriate QR code.

Two days later, I got another email from Inpost, and went back to discover there was something in the drop-box: some official LG packaging and a note telling us to include the battery and back-cover!

Thankfully, LG then confirmed that they'd received the phone anyway, and after about two weeks, it finally came back and my friend is happily using it once more.

Overall, it's put me off using LG for anything else in the future...

0
0

A journey down the UK's '3D Tongue' into its mini industrial revolution

juice

For prototyping, low-volume or custom items, 3D printing is great, whether you're printing out a replacement part on a US Navy ship in the Atlantic, making a high-precision part for a jet engine or printing out some props for your latest cosplay outfit.

In fact, prototyping is probably where 3D printing has made the greatest inroads and will continue to do so.

For mass-production, it's not so great, as it's a slow and expensive process. I was at a maker's fair this weekend and someone was using a 3D printer to make little rocketship models; each one took 2-3 hours to complete.

It'll be interesting to see how this improves as the technology matures - looking at the website for the HP Multi Jet Fusion, it's actually only claiming a 10x speedup against comparable 3D printers (i.e. ones with a six-figure price tag), which is still nowhere near fast enough for mass production.

Then too, if you have used 3D printing to produce a proof-of-concept and decide to use a more traditional method for mass-production, you'll have to redesign your widget from scratch to account for differences in material strengths and stress points.

Beyond this, some of my friends genuinely think that there's going to be a revolution of sorts, where every home will end up with a 3D printer sat in the corner; if you want a new item or something breaks, you'll just download the 3D model for it and set it printing.

I just don't see this happening. Partly because non-technical people have enough issues with standard printers - I get regularly summoned to help relatives change ink cartridges or install drivers.

Partly because I suspect there'll be issues with getting hold of the actual 3D models - as with cultural media (e.g. music, books, movies, etc), the people who make them will generally want to be paid for them, which means that there's likely to be a plethora of copy-protection mechanisms and formats.

And partly for the same issue/reason as per above: you can't always replace a mass-produced item with a 3D printed model. 3D printed items can be stronger, but they can also be weaker, as the guys who scanned and printed out gun components found out (http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013/03/download-this-gun-3d-printed-semi-automatic-fires-over-600-rounds/).

There's also the question about other physical properies (e.g. heat resistance, expansion/contraction when temperature changes occur) and tolerances - the Multi Jet Fusion claims to have an accuracy of 0.2mm, but only after sandblasting. whereas injection moulding and CNC routers are usually accurate to around 0.127mm

0
0

Full Linux-on-PS4 hits Github

juice

Re: It's a fun experiment...

Performance-intensive stuff: most of this comes down to the GPU these days. The Pi itself is a key example of this; the fairly underpowered ARM chip (at least in the original iteration) relied heavily on the Broadcom GPU.

A fairly quick glance online shows the PS4 GPU to be roughly equivalent to a Radeon 7850 (http://wccftech.com/playstation-4-vs-xbox-one-vs-pc-ultimate-gpu-benchmark/). These look to be available for around 75 quid online, and come with 2GB of dedicated ram.

Admittedly, there's something of an apples/oranges comparison here, since I'm looking at second-hand prices. Then too, the PS4's custom-tuned architecture may well have some speed advantages - though conversely, GPU performance under linux is still generally behind that of Windows, and that's even assuming a hack like this is able to get access to all the hardware, and that drivers are available to take advantage of it.

Still, for around £150, you can get a quad-core machine with 8GB of ram, 2GB of dedicated GPU ram and a GPU equivalent to the PS4. And generally, that'll include a Windows 7 licence which can be upgraded to Windows 10 or junked and replaced with Linux.

And then you can spend the rest in the pub ;)

0
0
juice

It's a fun experiment...

But these days, it does seem a bit redundant.

Getting Linux running on the PS3 was interesting at the time, as it was pretty powerful for the price in some number-crunching scenarios, thanks to the Cell architecture. But Moore's law had already marched on a fair amount by the time Sony withdrew support for Linux, thanks in no small part to the rise of the GPU as a device for massively parallel processing.

These days, "consumer" hardware is very much a commodity. Android-based USB-powered thumbsticks can be picked up for less than 15 quid - or, if you want to build something for scientific purposes, for the same price as a PS4, you could pick up ten Raspberry Pis and slap them together into a cluster.

Or you could nip onto Ebay and pick up a OEM small-form-factor PC; at a glance, there's plenty of multi-core, 3ghz machines with 8GB of ram available for less than a third of the price of a PS4[*]

And with all of the above, you don't have to worry about the functionality vanishing if/when Sony patches the exploit.

It's still an interesting experiment, but it's definitely of limited use in the real world!

[*] This is exactly what I did a while ago; said box fits comfortably under the TV and does a good job of running Windows 10 with Kodi, Steam, iTunes and a few other bits and pieces. Plus, it's all controllable from my phone - including the TV itself!

0
0

A Logic Named Joe: The 1946 sci-fi short that nailed modern tech

juice

A million monkeys is a bit unfair...

These people were actively thinking about the future, rather than just hammering random keys. Though admittedly, it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference ;)

There's plenty of other interesting nuggets out there, too.

EE Doc Smith produced some spectacular space-opera cheese; much of this was the cliche "hero saving heroine from Certain Doom with the power of Science", but his Lensman series included some interesting concepts and his exploration of how to handle complex space battles was cited as an key inspiration for the US military's development of Command Centre capabilities in World War 2.

Robert Heinlein produced some equally interesting stuff - the militry concepts and tactics in Starship Troopers are well thought out (and the way these were ignored by the film is a major reason why I despise it) - and along the way, he also invented things like waldos (named after his story) and the water bed; his story was actually used as an example of prior art when someone tried to patent the concept!

Keith Laumer is much less well known, but produced some interesting concepts, especially in his Reteif series, where a diplomat wanders the cosmos, cleaning up after his incompetent bureaucratic superiors. Admittedly, it's hard at this distance to determine how much was original and how much was drawn from other sources, but he dabbled with concepts such as virtual reality, remote-controlled robotic bodies and cloning. It's possible at least some of this was driven by the fact that he suffered a stroke which restricted his mobility.

There's many more out there - for instance, the British government ignored Arthur C Clarke's ideas about geo-stationary satellites.

Sadly, one area where the Golden Age of sci-fi seemed quite weak was around computing science (though again, EE Doc Smith did come up with the concept of "robot controlled" spaceships as the first line in massed assaults). I suspect this was down to editors/publishers not being comfortable with the concept (and/or assuming the reader wouldn't be interested); Science was there to be controlled, not self-governing!

2
0

DARPA to geeks: Weaponize your toasters … for America!

juice

I'm mildly surprised...

That no-one's mentioned the Atomic Toaster from MDK 2 yet!

http://maxdockurtmdk.wikia.com/wiki/Toaster

0
0

You've seen things people wouldn't believe – so tell us your programming horrors

juice
Mushroom

Bad code? Don't talk to me about bad code...

I spend a lot of time trying to fix things with a codebase which dates back over 15 years and has been hacked on by dozens (if not hundreds) of people with highly varying levels of knowledge and experience.

The bit of code I'm looking at *today* is a prime example: it's meant to deal with account cancellations. How does it do this, you ask? Well, it runs a query to pull back every account with a cancellation date set *regardless of whether the date is in the future or not*, and then performs a pass in the code to filter this down to the customers who we're actually interested in. Because everyone knows databases are bad at applying date and primary-key constraints to queries.

Then there's the code which used a switch statement to round a timestamp to the nearest 15 minutes. Y'know, instead of using the modulus operator.

Or the code which used the "last modified" timestamp on a file to determine the next polling period, rather than using the "YYYYMMDD-HHIISS" metadata embedded in the filename - and the two could differ significantly as the process could take over an hour to run. Though to be (un)fair, this same code also mandated a two-hour overlap between polling periods, because who doesn't love reprocessing data?

Or the code which compared an array to itself and surprisingly always got a match!

Or the web-application page which was showing configurable options which should only be displayed to certain users. Aside from adding around 100,000 extra items to the document's DOM - each with active Javascript code registered against it - this also added several megabytes to the overall page size. Entertainingly, said page was the default landing page, so fixing this issue sliced over 50gb of data per day off the internal network.

And the list goes on...

I'll be the first to admit that I've written some bad code in the past, and newer code in the system is (generally) of a higher quality. But even so!

6
0

From Zero to hero: Why mini 'puter Oberon should grab Pi's crown

juice

Re: So many strawmen, so little time...

Fair point - I forgot about the RAM upgrade on the Pi2b - I'm still running RaspBMC on a 512mb B+, as it Just Works :)

0
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