* Posts by Dusty

28 posts • joined 4 Oct 2012

Intel end-of-lifing BIOS and driver downloads for dusty hardware

Dusty

Re: Legacy computing

It isn't just industrial stuff. A lot of perfectly satisfactory medical stuff uses very old computer hardware too.

Perhaps not 20 years old, but the visual field scanner I was tested on recently was a 2007 machine running on XP with an FDD on the front panel.

Gas-guzzling Americans continue to shun electric vehicles as sales fail to bother US car market

Dusty

Re: SUVs and pickups are just a lifestyle fad.

Outside of cities, houses are dead cheap in the USA, there is plenty of land and therefore it doesn't cost much.

There is no point in building houses out of "Proper Building Materials" in Tornado alley. And in the US Lumber/timber products are far cheaper to make and transport than bricks.

Its like the Gun thing. The USA is not Europe. Outside of cities subsistence hunting is actually a big thing and there are plenty of wild animals that will quite happily kill you and eat you (Not necessarily in that order) so going out to the woods does mean that having a Rifle/Shotgun and, for good measure, a large calibre handgun on your person is actually a very good idea (Anything much less than a 44 and all you will get is a very pissed off Bear)

Outside of the urban areas (And even then only the urban areas that are warm all year round) full EV's don't really have a chance, at least not with the current or even near future possible battery technology.

Dusty

Re: SUVs and pickups are just a lifestyle fad.

The other thing that Europeans do not get isn't just the distances it is the overall environment. US Winters can be brutal even quite far south, A Nissan leaf is not going to be of much use to you when it is -20 outside, there is five foot of snow and 100 miles to the next major town. There is a reason why Americans like their SUV's

Remember the Uber self-driving car that killed a woman crossing the street? The AI had no clue about jaywalkers

Dusty

OK Down thumbers,

How "exactly" do you think an AI (Or even a Human driver) should be programmed/taught to deal with the fact that sometimes Pedestrians will just randomly step out "Right" in front of you or that sometimes Cyclists approaching from a minor road will just continue out without giving way?

The only "Safe" approach is to come to a screeching halt every single time the AI detects any Pedestrians or Cyclists in the vicinity.

Obviously, this is no more practical for an AI than it is for a Human driver.

So accidents like this will continue to be a feature on the highway until such time as the vehicular and Cyclist/Pedestrian aspects of travel are physically separated and the one cannot intrude on the other..

Dusty

Re: What about the driver?

"A car either drives itself safely or it doesn't, a human in a driving seat is just a scape goat."

Indeed, the "Driver is there to take control in an emergency" thing is a dangerous myth.

The "Window" for a motor accident avoidance is typically only a matter of seconds.

I doubt is a Human operator would have a chance to take control in the event of something unexpected happening even if they were holding the wheel, feet on pedals and devoting full attention to the road ahead.

You know, Actually driving.

Self driving cars are pointless unless they can be given full responsibility for the task allowing the "Passanger" to get on with something else (Up to and including sleeping it off in the back seat after a heavy session)

This is not to say that some technologies might not actually be helpful to a human driver such as adaptive cruise control, auto emergency braking and so on. But even these will eventually reduce the drivers involvement and reduce his ability to react to unexpected events

Dusty

In other words, the AI behaved very much like a Human driver.

Cyclists and pedestrians are often regarded as static objects to be avoided rather than dynamic objects that have a very significant risk of moving into your path (Or you moving into theirs re cyclists at intersections)

Like a human driver, The AI didn't expect her to just step right out in front of it and by the time it realised (Again, just like a Human driver) that she was actually in the vehicles direct path, it was too late to stop.

The Feds are building an America-wide face surveillance system – and we're going to court to prove it, says ACLU

Dusty

Re: "including Amazon. Again, the details of those contracts are unknown"

Machine AI, for all its failings, is probably better than the Mk1 Eyeball version. I don't really know why ID parade evidence is considered so valuable. It has been known for ages that it is pretty damn unreliable.

(Finger print evidence is a lot less reliable than it is made out to be too. It is fine for excluding suspects, but only of limited use, and with a lot of subjective interpretation involved, when it comes to identifying them)

Watch tiny swimming magnetic robots suck up uranium in a droplet of radioactive wastewater

Dusty

Re: Bite..

Its the old, what I believe to have been called, Hippocratic principle "That which is used grows, that which is not used wastes away" (Or words to that effect) The immune system and cellular repair mechanisms seem to work better if they are given something to chew on. Being too sterile is implicated in all sorts of health problems. Being under exposed may well be an issue too.

I recall reading of a proposed "Ultra Low radiation exposure" experiment where test animals are excluded from as much radiation as possible (Including being fed specially processed food from which the K40 has been removed) to see how their health compares with normal control subjects, but I don't know if there has been progress on this. The results would be interesting.

Dusty

Re: Bite..

"Radioactivity is pretty much bad anywhere in or on or around the body."

Unless "Radiation Hormesis" is actually a thing after all.

USAF spaceplane back on Earth after mystery 2-year jaunt in orbit. Jeepers creepers, what has it been doing up here?

Dusty

Re: What is the sky?

Funnily enough, This is not a new idea. Only the other day I read a very old Sci-Fi short story that basically included this idea and expanded on to suggest that it is the presence of the Moon, gradually peeling away the Earths atmosphere over eons of time by flying through it, that is what gave us the atmosphere that we have today rather than the much thicker one of Venus.

Samsung on fridge cert error: Someone tried to view 'unsavoury content' in middle of John Lewis

Dusty
Unhappy

Wi-Fi for all!

"they also insist on wifi for consoles that reside 2 foot away from the router and would be better served by a cable."

Oh, don't go there! :((

One of my big whinges is the way that the "Standard" hubs provided by internet providers only provide very limited physical connectivity.

Added to that, they are all rather small and lightweight "Table top" devices which means that if you do plug cables into it, they tend to slide off onto the floor unless the weight of the cables is supported elsewhere (Cable tied to table leg etc).

What I want is a Wi-Fi router with a good half dozen (or more) ether net connections that can be mounted on the wall (Say) so that it is secure.

I know that there are alternative options, but despite using this site I am not an IT professional and, In my case I use BTinternet and the BT TV service and from what I have read on the subject. Using non-BT routers is a bit of a faff if you want all the services to work correctly. Also, unless one wants to go full fat cabinet mounted units. ALL the available after market routers/ethernet hubs available seem only to be the table top type.

Grrrr. :((

Good news – America's nuke arsenal to swap eight-inch floppy disks for solid-state drives

Dusty

Re: keep 'em!

Do those old chips not have modern equivalents? I recall a multitude of audio etc circuits from the 70's based round the LM741 chip. These are currently available from RS @ around 5 for £3, Unless they were bizarre bespoke ones, I would have thought many/most even, popular basic chips from the 70's would still be available.

Dusty

Re: 8-inch upgraded (downgraded?) to....

I remember suggesting in the 80's that to prevent the spread of Viruses, one should always keep ones stiffy in a plastic cover! Went down well with my fellow geeky computer friends at the time!

Dusty

Re: MAD

Well, yes and no.

Neutron Bombs were primarily developed as a defensive weapon. Essentially a nuclear weapon that could be safe (er, a very bir er!) to use over western Germany to stop a conventional assault by the soviet union in a manner that firstly, could be argued as not constituting an offensive "First use" (Since we were bombing our own territory, not the Soviet Unions) and secondly, did not reduce the territory we were defending to an apocalyptic waste land. Neutron Bombs are actually quite small in nuclear terms at their optimum yield point. Anything much over 7 Kt or so and the advantage of the enhanced radiation bit is lost to general heat flash and blast.

I have always felt that this is NK's game, which is why all their test yields to date, even the claimed thermonuclear ones, are right in the ball part for a neutron Bomb. NK does not have any territorial interests beyond SK, their only other military position is that of defence. Neutron Bombs tick the box for both objectives. From an offensive position NK is not going to nuke LA or Tokyo.

They might however launch half a ton of builders sand into LEO/Whatever. That would be my main concern regarding their "Offensive" long range/orbital rocket capability.

Pack your pyjamas, Zuck: US bill threatens execs with prison for data failures

Dusty

Re: Preempt

Re Murder. I may be wrong. But my understanding is that in the US, a suspect of a Murder committed in, say NY, who has fled to, say, Florida does actually have to be formally extradited to face trial. He cant just be picked up by the Police and taken back to NY just because they want him.

Oh dear... AI models used to flag hate speech online are, er, racist against black people

Dusty

Liguistic appartheid

"Racist" comments aside. I have always felt that, in English anyway (Does the same phenomena exist in other languages??) Much of the distinction between acceptable and unacceptable speech dates back to the Norman conquest. "Profane" language is the language of the natives, "Polite" language is the language (Effing Fulfords aside) of the ruling classes. We do not just have to look at the classic four letter words to find this distinction. Consider agriculture. The Beasts have the short names of the native working classes, Hen, Cow, Bull, Sheep and so on. The flesh by contrast has the "Foreign" names used by those ruling classes wealthy enough to actually be able to eat it. Beef, Poultry, Mutton and so on. Perhaps, post Brexit, we may have the opportunity to throw off our linguistic shackles and rediscover our verbal heritage and become potty-mouth capital of the world!

Uncle Sam punishes China for abusing Uyghur Muslims – by blacklisting top AI surveillance companies

Dusty

Re: @Mark 85 - More inconsistant behavior by the Government.

Indeed, the link between Opium, Tea, Hong Kong and indeed what is today HSBC makes interesting reading. I have always felt that there is something Karmic about how many of the designer drugs and cheap fentanyl etc that is flooding western countries and causing so much misery are largely coming from China. :/

Dusty

The Chinese authorities have very good historical reasons for having a downer on what they perceive to be "fringe" Religions/Cults (See also attitude towards Fulan Gong).

Do a quick web search on the "Taiping Rebellion" It was actually one of the bloodiest conflicts in all of human history, It wasn't that long ago, and "Most" people will never have heard of it.

Spacecraft that told us 'you're screwed' finally gives up the ghost after doubling its shelf life

Dusty

Re: 5cm could be an over-estimate

The thing about coral atolls (Tuvalu etc) that everybody seems to miss is that they are not made of rock. They are living structures. The "Land" is composed of washed up dead coral. The land surface on an atoll is only ever going to be no more than a couple of metres above sea level. As sea levels rise, the reefs will rise with them and so will the land level. As sea levels fall, the reefs will sink with it and exposed "Land" will be rapidly eroded away. How well coral growth can keep up with rapid changes in sea level and changing sea temperatures I do not know. 10,000 years ago, many of todays atolls may well have still had their central sea mounts above sea level But I cant help feeling that these living islands are a lot more than 10,000 years old so that suggests that coral can actually adapt to really very rapid and indeed drastic changes. Changes that make the wildest doomongering of the warmist lobby seem utterly trivial IE Metres/Year, even 10's of metres/year on occasion (Say when a large glacial dam breaks releasing its pent up water) as opposed to the, perhaps, couple of inches/year we may now be experiencing, or not...!

Dusty

Re: 5cm could be an over-estimate

While we are on the subject of pacific atolls. We are currently being told that a couple of inches sea level rise and a couple of degrees warmer water over the next century will destroy them. What happened 10,000 years ago (Or so) when, in a comparatively short timescale, sea levels rose by hundreds of meters and the water got a lot hotter?

Dusty

Re: Where do you think the Kármán line lies?

As I said years ago when all this Bransons thing was just kicking off. As a technology, it is clever enough. But it is simply repeating the work of the X-15 project of the 1960's. It isn't the 100,000 Meters that is where it really counts. It is the 11Km/S. The difference between Bransons roller-coaster and true space flight is the difference between holding your breath and having a quick look around underwater and diving with scuba gear.

Dusty

Re: Sea level rising

In all seriousness, since I would love a simple explanation. how do you measure sea level anyway, What is it measured relative too? The Sea is moving around all over the place, all the time, as indeed is the land. The rates of change in sea level claimed are on a similar scale as tectonic plate movements and only a fraction of that in geologically active areas where a single earthquake can move the land many metres within a few minutes. How does the satellite measure where the surface of the sea is? mm Radar? Lasers? How do we know where the satellite is to within the mm needed to make these measurements? Radar? Lasers? based on land that is also moving? Much the same applies to GPS of course which also makes claims of incredible precision as to location when fully utilised. I could google it of course, but it is much more fun to have a proper and concise explanation from somebody who actually knows.

Say 'cheese'! Cassini probe ZOOMS IN on Saturn's craggy Dione moon

Dusty

Re: Astonishing feats of celestial navigation

As I recall, the original plan for the original Orion Nuclear rocket (Mars by 1965, Saturn by 1970) was to have a crew of around 30. Mainly because, in the absence of the computers that we today take for granted, it would have taken that many people to do the in flight calculations by hand!

David Attenborough warns that humans have stopped evolving

Dusty
Mushroom

This isn't about who is breeding, It is about who isn't!

There are 5 Women who I keep in touch with from my youth. These are intelligent well educated women. Between them they have produced 3 children!

3!

And I don't imagine for one minute that this is unusual.

Allowing for "Wastage" even in this day and age I suspect that the adequate "replacement" number should be nearer a dozen!

Now, It is my suspicion (based solely on anecdotal evidence) that "Smarts" is an x chromosome characteristic. That is to say, one inherits it down the female line (From an technical POV, this would actually make sense)

The pressure over the last couple of generations to encourage women, and in particularly smart women, to eschew parenthood in favour of career (And if they DO have families to only have small ones) means that millions of "Smart" gene lines will have effectively been truncated! (Rendered extinct!) once truncated these are lost forever! they wont just magically reappear a couple of generations down the line when we might need them!

We are not looking here at some sort of gradual decline in "Smarts" over many generations. This represents a catastrophic self imposed genocide of the intellect! I suspect that "Advanced" societies two three generations down the line (Well within the life expectancies of those reading this) will quite possibly be no longer capable of supporting themselves (We are already struggling to maintain the infrastructure that we already have). The burgeoning (and increasingly unsupportable) welfare states that are now almost a constant in all developed countries represent only the beginning of this collapse as those needing external support to survive increasingly outnumber those who have the ability to do the supporting (And Aging populations are an additional pressure)

Detroit's collapse occurred because those doing the supporting moved away. An entire society no longer able to support itself will be a pretty grim thing!

Comet confesses: The receivers are among us even now

Dusty

Yeh, internet shopping is great! Order and pay for stuff sight unseen. Have it delivererd when you are out! # (with the option of collecting from the conveniantly located depot 30 miles away that is only open during working hours) and when the item turns out to be unsatifactory suffer the nightmare of trying to get a refund/exchange/whatever!

(# I do internet shopping of course, but I stick to companies that use Royal Mail as far as possible, that way if I have to collect stuff I can do it from the local PO not some depot in portsmouth or whatever)

New science: seas will rise due to CO2 ... but not for centuries

Dusty

Re: Fusion

Sucessful Fusion would produce the most "Dangerous" by product of all!

Almost unlimited amounts of energy available to any nation with access to a coastline!

The "greens" dont want that because, ultimatly, they want us all to go back to the Farm (IE ANY technology that promises abundant and inexpensive energy will be vigourously opposed on one ground or another! Indeed I have always felt this is the "Real" reason why they oppose fission so strongly. They are affraid that it might actually work and they really dont want that!)

The current "geo-political Order" (for want of a better description) doesnt want it either. There is a great deal of money to be made by various interested parties by maintaining the status quo not to mention political power.

If a fraction of the money spent on the last 25 years of GulfWars had been spent on a "Manhattan Project" to develop practical commercial fusion We would by now have either cracked it or proved beyond any doubt that it is impossible!

Fusion is on the back burner because that where the interested parties want it to be!

Dusty

As a matter of interest, How DO you measure (or even define) sea level?

Everything is moving (land, sea etc) and the numbers claimed/quoted are in the mm/cm range! In all seriousness, How is it done?? (and indeed, what is the frame of refrence?)

Genuinely curious....

Dusty
Thumb Up

Thats My sort of solution!

Like it! Processing that amount of sea water could also (in principle) provide all the urainium that you would require to power the scheme!

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