* Posts by JeffyPoooh

3919 posts • joined 28 Jun 2013

Braking news: Tesla preps firmware fling to 'fix' Model 3's inability to stop in time

JeffyPoooh
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Not according to Top Gear

"According to the UK's Highway Code, the typical stopping distance locally is measured at 73 metres, 240 feet..."

Jeremy told me that the 240 feet was the legal limit; the maximum acceptable stopping distance.

Not "the typical".

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Astronaut took camera on spacewalk, but forgot SD memory card

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"...they actually expected a gopro to work in space?"

RegBagerer commented, "Perhaps more interesting is that they actually expected a gopro to work in space?"

YouTube seems to be relatively full of videos of various GoPros or similar camera gadgets being flung (rockets) or hoisted (balloons) up to 100,000+ feet, which is about 1% of the usual sea level air pressure. So if it can handle 99% diminishment, then the final 1% to reach the hard vacuum of Space isn't too big a stretch.

So it's not an unreasonable expectation. Provided that you remember to insert an SD card.

(I'm assuming that air pressure is the predominant consideration. Temperature might be another, but that's a complicated topic. And it's pretty cold at 50,000 feet. So same observational logic again...)

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Intel’s first 10nm CPU is a twin-core i3 destined for a mid-range Lenovo

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What have they been up to?

My 2-year-old cheap and cheerful smartphone has a 14nm 8-core 2.2 GHz CPU.

Intel seems to have misplaced their Tick-Tock strategy.

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Tech support made the news after bomb squad and police showed up to 'defuse' leaky UPS

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A wise person once wrote...

You’re concerned about your family’s safety. So you get a guard dog. The dog costs a fortune. It immediately poops on the floor. Then it chews off the entire left side of your Bang and Olufson. It bites the postman’s fingers. It then sleeps through an actual burglary. And finally it eats one of your children.

This is the UPS experience: If they’re not preoccupied with smoldering their lead acid batteries, then they’re busy buzzing and arcing. Then they blow an internal fuse on the output, and your Great American Novel is suddenly lost, again, for the third time. Then there’s an actually power failure (Yay!), so they turn on their patented 387 volt offset square wave, and your PC is instantly corrupted. Meanwhile battery acid squirts out onto the ceiling, again. Then, while you’re out trying to buy a replacement PC, the UPS catches fire and burns your house down.

I’d happily pay $800 to not have one.

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Biometrics: Better than your mother's maiden name. Good luck changing your body if your info is stolen

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Re: Biometrics

"Good luck changing your body..."

I came here to post: Biometrics are your USERNAME, *NOT* your PASSWORD!!

It was my intention to ask those assembled if this common sense conclusion had yet been chiselled into the fixed body of knowledge that is 'Duh-obvious IT Security 101' ? Apparently not.

As a very wise person recently noted, "IDIOTS."

As a side note, if we chose a different bodily appendage to apply to the scanner, a part of the anatomy that is normally kept out of public view, then it might work as a Password. But then we'd have to clean the scanners after each use.

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Great Scott! Bitcoin to consume half a per cent of the world's electricity by end of year

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New form factor for computers

Computers should be shaped to resemble electric baseboard heaters. In fact, resistive baseboard heaters should be banned, and all baseboard heaters should be Network-enabled CPU farms, with a government incentive sponsoring their installation. The wall-mounted thermostat would simply initiate start-up and controlled shutdown.

One trivial residual issue is the lack of population in the extreme South. Somehow we need to convince several billion people to move to (for example) South Georgia Island, so that we'll have substantial heating demand during the Northern summer. That shouldn't be too difficult.

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Tesla forums awash with spam as mods take an unscheduled holiday

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"...would you like one of these pills instead?"

With anything related to Musk, I recommend that you choose the red pill.

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Airbus windscreen fell out at 32,000 feet

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Re: Last time this happened...

"...bolts that were too short..."

Official Report: "The replacement windscreen had been installed with 84 bolts whose diameters were [too small], and 6 bolts [too short]."

The TV documentary on this incident mentioned the bolts' diameter. I don't recall them mentioning the six short bolts.

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FTC names its dirty half-dozen half-assed tech warranty bandits

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FTC staff searching websites for infringing language

Meanwhile, Apple puts DRM chips into their charging cables.

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Navy names new attack sub HMS Agincourt

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Astute fitted with Dell hardware inside

If it's anything like my work Dell PC, it'll be noisy enough (acoustically) to be tracked from the Kremlin (directly) if they leave a window* open.

So the Astutes would be safe all winter I guess.

(* Kremlin window, not submarine window.)

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Apple MacBook butterfly keyboards 'defective', 'prone to fail' – lawsuit

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Solution: Morse code

Once the keyboard starts to go bad, then bring up an app to allow text entry using Morse code on any of the remaining still-functional keys. E.g. A quick ddd = s. A slow d d d = o.

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PGP and S/MIME decryptors can leak plaintext from emails, says infosec professor

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"...exposure of the contents of past messages.”

So the boffins do their responsible disclosure. Then then evil regimes decrypt their stockpile of old PGP email intercepts from suspected dissidents. Then it's Mary Queen of Scots all over again.

The existence of mass storage combined with the memory of regimes brings peril.

The Drake Equation needs another term, equivalent to nuclear peril. Except more IT based, where the alien civilizations' original thinking are destroyed by lack of privacy. The Great Silence of the Void is explained because only the quiet vegetable farmers survive.

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Re: Especially stop reading...

"...exposure of the contents of past messages.”

Doesn't sound very side channel. But we'll see...

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Cisco cancels all YouTube ads, then conceals cancellation

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Does Cisco realize...?

"...does not align with the values of our brand.”

Does Cisco realize that every single packet of Internet porn passes through an average of about three of their Cisco-branded routers and switches while being delivered to the lecherous viewers?

They should be deeply ashamed. Mostly about the inexcusable latency and lost packets.

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So when can you get in the first self-driving car? GM says 2019. Mobileye says 2021. Waymo says 2018 – yes, this year

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Re: Shared Vehicles waste energy and clog roads...

Down-Vote calls for explanation.

Is there a counterargument?

Is there some magic to bring the Road Distance Efficiency Factor (RDEF) of such shared vehicles back up from its inherent starting point near 50%?

Anticipating one possible answer, put several passengers into one shared vehicle. Yeah, that's called a "bus".

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Re: Shared Vehicles waste energy and clog roads...

Allow me to explain:

A-to-B plus C-to-D is less than A-to-B plus B-to-C plus C-to-D.

B-to-C is the Taxi or Uber or Autonomous vehicle relocating to pick up the next passenger.

The counterargument is typically some hand-wavy future something or other to provide the doubling of energy and road spatial efficiency required just to get us back to naught.

Amazingly, this is a new thought for many.

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JeffyPoooh
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Shared Vehicles waste energy and clog roads...

Taxi cabs and Uber drivers typically drive about twice their paid distance. The between-fares relocation moves don't happen with individually owned vehicles.

Everyone assumes the opposite.

Some future hand-wavy magic may compensate, but this obvious initial factor is a poor first step.

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Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park

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Fire Safety Training

We were instructed not to fight fires, but to use the fire extinguisher only if required to clear a path to an exit to facilitate our escape. So of course I had to put up my hand to ask the obvious question...

"Does that mean that if I am on fire, that I need to stand blocking an exit so that somebody would extinguish me?"

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Artificial intelligence is good for at least one thing – making hardware important again

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Hardware? We don't need no stinking hardware.

Recursive Virtualization.

Yeah, 'It's Emulation All The Way Down.'

The advantage of such Recursive Emulation is that if you need more memory, you simply change one line of code to increase the size of the array. Same with CPU speed - just type in a higher number. Infinite free computational power is nearly here.

You may think that this is all completely preposterous, but it's the only known explanation of why Microsoft bought Minecraft for billions of dollars. Obviously Microsoft were after the technology behind those famous simulated CPUs built-up from the blocks within the Minecraft virtual world.

See? It all fits together perfectly.

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IBM bans all removable storage, for all staff, everywhere

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Bah! IBM's data is all in EBCDIC anyway...

Encrypted with EBCDIC.

Nobody can read it.

Not even IBM.

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Where to find dark matter? $34m says go look 2km under Canada

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You won't find any WIMPs in Canada...

We had a WIMP once; left it outside at -40° and it froze to death.

Found it there, frozen solid and stone dead, when we got back from our picnic.

Now excuse me, I have to go beat-up a polar bear. Hold my beer.

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Is your gadget using secondhand memory? Predictable senility allows boffins to spot recycled NAND chips

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I'm suspicious of the age of...

...the mercury in my Delay Line memory array.

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Waymo van prang, self-driving cars still suck, AI research jobs, and more

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Re: Kalman Filtering

DAM admitted, "I dunno..."

I have failed to make myself sufficiently clear. As Fermat noted, these damn margins are too small...

Kalman filtering is an optimum method of combining noisy data inputs to achieve a unified solution. Aircraft use it to mix GPS, Inertial and other data to provide a single navigation solution that is reliable.

The point is in response to the following issue.

Slightly expanded extract [this issue->]: "...'localization errors', where... ...the vehicle was unable to really work out its position in relation to its environment... Errors included... ...not braking hard enough for a stop sign."

Clearly the designers of autonomous vehicles can't even get the basics correct. .: They're utter morons.

The mention of the Apollo computer was intended to convey that Kalman filtering is an old and well established technique, and doesn't require GBs of software.

Kalman filtering is non-trivial, but it's the sort of thing that should have been included on the Requirements spec from Day 1.

These people are clowns. Governments need to get a big bucket of Roadworthiness Regulations and dump it on them.

The AV industry clearly needs some Adult Supervision.

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Re: Dumb drivers

You'd better bone up on your Ethics 101 and Liability 101. It's likely that they'll need to be at least an order of magnitude safer than humans. Perhaps even two.

Even then, the concentrated liability is still going to be ruinous.

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Kalman Filtering

"[Glorified] Cruise [Control] said some of the data incoming to the car’s many sensors did not quite match, giving conflicting information and causing the car to behave erratically."

Are these people so unedumakated that they're unaware of the work of Stratonovich, Bucy, and Kalman?

Apparently, Kalman filtering was knitted into the Apollo computer.

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Pentagon in uproar: 'China's lasers' make US pilots shake in Djibouti

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Filtering eyewear available

CBC News: "Dartmouth [part of Halifax municipality, Nova Scotia, Canada] firm begins production of anti-laser eyewear for pilots. Metamaterial Technologies Inc. says eyeglasses that refract laser light will be available in a few months. ...protective eyewear that it says can protect pilots and military personnel from the growing threat of laser strikes."

Reportedly based on nano-structures that precisely block two of the most common laser wavelengths. Films to be applied to aircraft windows, but also snazzy eyewear.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/anti-laser-pilot-glasses-3m-in-government-funding-airbus-planes-windscreens-1.4650121

I assume that they'll be busy...

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Drone 'swarm' buzzed off FBI surveillance bods, says tech bloke

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Re: An Interesting Indent.

"...868mhz...and 915mhz..."

MHz.

Uppercase M for Mega. (Lowercase m is milli.)

Uppercase H because Hz is derived from a name.

And 433MHz would be for Asia.

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NASA demos little nuclear power plant to help find little green men

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Image: "A NASA depiction of a Kilopower unit on Luna"

Looks precarious. It'll get knocked over by the first breeze.

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Another quarter, another record-breaking Tesla loss: Let's take a question from YouTube, eh, Mr Musk?

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Re: It's not that old a company. So much turnover. So much cash on hand. So *little* profit?

RC Esq opined, "Share prices are not based so much on what a company is doing now, but what investors >>>think<<< it will do in the future."

I'm not convinced that the word "think" is precisely the optimum word choice in this context.

Perhaps 'believe' would be better.

Or 'hope' would arguably be even more accurate.

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Shocking. Lightning strike knocks out neuro patient's brain implant

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Re: You can't prevent everything...

Tigra 07 made a poor comparison, "...would you also like to buy Volcano Insurance?"

Volcanos kill hundreds per year, on average. Slightly worse than the Cape Buffalo.

Ref. https://nypost.com/2017/10/12/volcanoes-kill-540-people-per-year-study/

Lightning kills probably tens of thousands per year.

Ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lightning_strike#Epidemiology

Nearly two orders of magnitude in the gap. So a very poor comparison.

Lightning is certainly nowhere near traffic accidents (not even close), but it's still worth unplugging the odd charger cable when there's a lightning storm about.

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Whoa, Gartner drops a truth bomb: Blockchain is overhyped and top IT bods don't want it

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"Blockchain is overhyped..."

File under: 'No sh*t Einstein'

Someday soon, all Blockchains will be 3D-printed, fusion-powered and self-driving.

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Scammers use Google Maps to skirt link-shortener crackdown

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Re: Why? Just why?

Here: https://tinyurl.com/YouGuysNeedThisNow

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JeffyPoooh
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Re: Why? Just why?

= https://goo.gl/LZsB6b

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JeffyPoooh
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Re: Why? Just why?

Maybe because of http://www.thelongestlistofthelongeststuffatthelongestdomainnameatlonglast.com/wearejustdoingthistobestupidnowsincethiscangoonforeverandeverandeverbutitstilllookskindaneatinthebrowsereventhoughitsabigwasteoftimeandenergyandhasnorealpointbutwehadtodoitanyways.html

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We just wanna torque: Spinning transfer boffins say torque memory near

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"...meaning greater density in less space."

Hmmm...

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NASA dusts off FORTRAN manual, revives 20-year-old data on Ganymede

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Old Media

Old Media is typically of surprisingly small capacity. How large were these tapes? 256kB cartridges, or much larger multi-MB reels?

Hopefully somebody has copied the entire dataset into an email (perhaps a CSV table), and then posted it to a blog somewhere.

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It's not rocket science! Actually it is, and it's been a busy frickin week

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Can the Sentinel 3B environmental monitoring satellite detect...

...that the Arctic ocean is becoming littered with ex-SS-19 (a.k.a. UR-100NU, 15A35) intercontinental ballistic missile boosters leaking left-over hydrazine into the environment?

Ref 'The News': "The launch vessel, a former SS-19 intercontinental ballistic missile, is powered by hydrazine - a fuel so toxic and carcinogenic that almost every space program in the world, including Russia's, no longer uses it. The spent rocket stage is expected to contain up to a tonne of unused hydrazine."

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I spy with my little eye ... a quantum drum with TRILLIONS of atoms

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Re: Tony2Heads

Yes. That's the point that I was referring to with, "...a few wafer-thin photons shouldn't bother a macroscopic clump all that much."

If quantum entanglement becomes macroscopic, the granola bar munching excessively Spiritualism crowd are going to become insufferable.

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JeffyPoooh
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"...entanglement between objects....visible to humans."

Based on everything that we've been fed for decades regarding that 'Observation Effect' thingy, I presume not 'entangled' and 'visible' at the same time.

In other words, 'The Cat Must Be In A Box.'

I wonder if we'll finally be permitted to peek, given that just a few wafer-thin photons shouldn't bother a macroscopic clump all that much.

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Boss sent overpaid IT know-nothings home – until an ON switch proved elusive

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Re: "How difficult can it be?"

"How hard can it be?", asked Jeremy Clarkson on just about every Top Gear episode.

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Apple's QWERTY gets dirty leaving fanbois shirty

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"...keyboard replacements are $700 (£502)."

I believe that I may have spotted an issue here -^.

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James Webb Space Telescope + luck = long distance astrofun

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James Webb Space Telescope + luck = ...

...Reaching its assigned location, unfurling and operating correctly.

With all the years and billions invested (eggs, meet one basket), I'll be super-happy if it just gets where it's going and lasts at least the planned number of years.

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Kaspersky Lab loses the privilege of giving Twitter ad money

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How to prove a negative (in this case)

"...Kaspersky was sharing information collected from its customers with Russian intelligence agencies."

How do you prove that this accusation is more-or-less effectively probably likely unfounded?

Kaspersky needs to provide the information and tools to allow WireSharking researchers to decrypt the contents of any and all packets being sent from the users' PC back to anywhere.

Then the independent researchers can view the plain text data, and provide commentary.

It won't be cut-and-dry, but it may well be clearly nefarious or it may well be clearly harmless. In either case, the results would be clear. But it may be in the muddled middle, perhaps.

Researchers could examine historical versions too.

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Amazon, LG Electronics turned my vape into an exploding bomb, says burned bloke in lawsuit

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My recent hot battery incident...

Thankfully, just an AA Alkaline. Pressed a Kirkland brand AA cell into a wall clock. The wall clock battery socket was very tight and wouldn't easily accept the cell. Pulled it out, but the clock's flimsy negative terminal somehow wedged itself into the cell's wrapper. Turns out the cell case is positive with the insulation break at the bottom. So the flimsy terminal bridge the oddly placed battery terminals. As I was trying to unjam the cell, I noticed it was getting hot. And hotter. Crikey! One huge yank got the AA cell out, but essentially destroyed the clock.

How flippin' difficult should it be to put a damn AA cell into a damn wall clock?

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How much do AI gurus really get paid? And is NIPS such a great name for a conference?

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Re: NIPPLES

Actually, the comedy backronym '...Programmable Logic Extensibility...' got me thinking...

On the assumption that we're really getting uncomfortably close to a Moore's Law limit (?), then the longer term future of Neural Networks is a reversal of the present unspoken virtualization assumption*, and a move towards dedicated hardware.

* Has anyone else noticed that the entire industry is running their neural nets effectively as virtual machines? You've got your CPU running around updating tables in sequence. Instead of each neuron taking care of itself, all in parallel. In essence, "Why are you hobbling yourself with such a huge penalty?"

The Programmable Hardware folks (PALs, PLAs, etc.) need to be working on multi-billion neuron chips. With an IDE that'll import all the work done to date. They'd be 'infinitely' faster than the CPU buzzing around 'pollination flowers', one by one.

So "Programmable Logic Extensibility" as relates to neural networks actually is a worthwhile topic for further discussion.

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NIPPLES

Neural Information Processing and Programmable Logic Extensibility Symposium (NIPPLES)

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Creaky NHS digital infrastructure risks holding back gene boffinry, say MPs

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With that much Genetic Code on file...

...It's amazing that the OS can resist the overwhelming urge to load the code and try to execute it.

Modern OSs are so promiscuous that they'd probably try to compile and execute the written code snippets if you took a picture of the blackboard at your Comp Sci class.

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Samsung-backed gizmo may soon juice up your smartphone over the air

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"...scavenging energy from sources such as Wi-Fi..."

If this is about charging your Smartphone, then these boffins might wish to move their analysis from the conceptual to the numerical.

Typically, there's only about a watt at the router's antenna socket, and it's certainly not continuous duty cycle. A watt is equivalent to 5v x 200mA, but that would require a direct cable and duty cycle hack. End result, this is heading towards 10mA on a good day, and 300 hour charging time.

It's reassuring that boffins other than AI are also thick.

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JeffyPoooh
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"...the strength of the field is inversely proportional to the distance..."

Oh, has the Inverse *Square* Law been repealed?

If so, then we just need to slowly back away from the Source, all while increasing the size of our all-enveloping spherical Sink. By doing so, thanks to Scaling Laws, the total power at the Sink would be proportional to distance. Energy Crisis solved. Yay!

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CEO insisted his email was on server that had been offline for years

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Re: Deleting emails

Terry 6 frowned upon, "The e-mail hoarders....just let them lie where they fell. In a very long in-box folder."

With MS-Outlook, the In-Box is indexed for searching. So an old email can be found by typing a few keywords into the Search box. Typically takes mere seconds to find the required reference. That's why I use the approach that you frown upon. It's efficient.

Some of my more OCD colleagues create elaborate hierarchical structures of email folders. Then they struggle to search within the various folders where the required email might be squirrelled away. Takes at least minutes, and often they're totally unsuccessful. It's especially funny when they walk over to ask me to help them find a copy, which takes seconds.

But don't get me started on a rant questioning why MS-Outllook doesn't seem to include the Search index within the saved PST files. Open a PST file (e.g. years gone by) and it can't find anything unless you leave it alone over a long lunch. After lunch, the Search index is rebuilt, and searching is a treat. Close the PST, and it dumps the index. Might have to take three lunch breaks in one day.

Acknowledge in advance that there may be details and Company IT decisions contributing to these symptoms.

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