* Posts by bombastic bob

7346 posts • joined 1 May 2015

Microsoft drops a little surprise thank-you gift for sitting through Build: The source for GW-BASIC

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: how long before we port GW BASIC to Linux?

"You may want to have a look at yabasic"

found it in 'ports' for FreeBSD. Thanks. [it's always good to check stuff like this out]

But I still think it'd be fun to port GWBASIC on my own. It's all 16-bit 8088 ASM files and most likely using direct MS-DOS calls, so making it work for 32-bit or 64-bit and more 'generic' I/O would take some time, but it should be possible (maybe fun, who knows!). Maybe if I wrap a 'main()' around it... and use portable C language I/O like 'read()' and 'write()' ...

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

how long before we port GW BASIC to Linux?

if it's on github, can we fork it with patches for Linux? keep it open source with all of the copyrights intact, but let us do GW BASIC on Linux, too?

I've always thought BASIC was a good learners programming lingo. We can keep it alive this way.

/me looks into this - 146 forks already!

The Register calls for aid, and Microsoft's Rohan Kumar will answer... our questions about SQL Edge and Azure Synapse

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Micros~1 may be onto something here...

I'm in "wait and see" mode on this one.

DECADES ago I wrote a business analysis tool for Windows that (for whatever reason) didn't market well... but people who used it really liked it, saving them lots of time and letting them do ad-hoc analysis. The tool basically worked on some pre-crunched information locally on a PC, which allowed a number of ad-hoc reports and analyses on "the local data", including statistically derived stuff, etc.. It would have been difficult to manage that on the LIVE data.

So I "get" the concept. You pre-crunch some of the data in a way that you expect a LOT of clients/users/whatever to want, using an AI of some kind to figure out which should be pre-crunched or cached, and allow multiple "remote things" to report from the cache rather than the up-to-the-second live data.

This is also NOT unlike the reasons for DNS caching. So where appropriate, it's a good idea. AI would (in theory) allow you to get biggest bang:buck ratio.

So, "wait and see" mode. It might help, it might be cumbersome, and you're not gonna really know unless you try it out.

[another option, something else I've done before, is to cache any 'new' calculation results long enough to be re-used, and just age out cache entries to limit storage - this is simpler but less of a performance boost than a pro-active AI-based solution *might* be]

I would also NOT be surprised if many google searches have been pre-optimized in a similar manner.

IBM cuts deep into workforce – even its Watson and AI teams – as it 'pivots' to cloud

bombastic bob Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: I'm not surprised

"conclusion that is really a segue into a vaguely related topic"

Fixed it for ya (but we all knew what you meant, yeah)

or, was it REALLY just a joking reference to the 2 wheel electric scooter? in which case, I failed...

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: IBM has a cloud offering?

Red Hat's influence should help. I suspect RH has more influence on IBM than IBM does on RH.

Maybe that's why they're moving away from Watson... ?

bombastic bob Silver badge
Meh

Re: add high-value skills to our workforce

they should be moving people around within the company, just sayin'. Probably are, when possible, but I don't know since I don't work for IBM. A friend of mine did, for a while. They have their fingers in a LOT of pies.

To test its security mid-pandemic, GitLab tried phishing its own work-from-home staff. 1 in 5 fell for it

bombastic bob Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: One of our vendor partners sent me a meeting invite last week

even with thunderbird and a non-windows OS, and HTML viewing disabled, if someone sends me an "invite" like that I still get click-on links to accept the invitation. Unfortunately the calendar application (which I use) has that "feature" embedded and I'd have to edit code to disable it.

I also have to wonder HOW MANY such phishing attempts would FAIL if the click-on link showed up with the REAL URL (insted of a fake one) by viewing the e-mail as plain text instead of HTML.

The longest card game in the world: Microsoft Solitaire is 30

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Solitaire most likely sold MORE copies of Windows 3.0 than ANYTHING ELSE

I've said this before and I say it again, to make a point: Windows 3.0, with its 3D Skeuomorphic interface, virtual 80386 mode for DOS legacy applications, and the alltime favorite Solitaire game, was a TOTAL WINning combination for Micros~1 when it released in the early 1990's.

Perfect timing, JUST enough glitter to make people comment (in the stores, I heard them) about how much they liked the Solitaire game, and turn those positive comments into ACTUAL PURCHASE (not like "it just comes on the computer you bought, deal with it" but actually WANTING the thing), to be an all-time MARKETING SUCCESS! And my favorite version is actually 'FreeCell', which was first included with Win32s and the '95 beta "Chicago" (and maybe NT as well, though I can't remember if NT 3.x had it).

(Nowadays, though, I use Aisle Riot on FreeBSD and Linux)

Micros~1, *PLEASE* look at this past, INCREDIBLE success, and give us an OS that we *WANT* as much as we wanted Windows 3.0 - with Solitaire!

Forget BYOD, this is BYOVM: Ransomware tries to evade antivirus by hiding in a virtual machine on infected systems

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Use of SMBv1 for XP compat may be at the core

Since the VM is (apparently) running a version of Windowx XP, I have to wonder whether or not the BLOCKING of SMBv1 would stop it dead in its tracks?

SMBv1 is known to have serious vulnerabilities due to weak encryption. In every version of windows since Vista it should be possible to turn SMBv1 compatibility OFF [and this includes any Samba servers or NAS drives]. Unless you need to run XP machines on your network with file sharing enabled, it's probably a good idea to do this anyway.

I would be interested, though, in knowing whether "disable SMBv1" is a possible mitigation for this ransomware.

Campaign groups warn GCHQ can re-identify UK's phones from COVID-19 contact-tracing app data

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pirate

Re: Mandatory?

send some screen shots, and someone like ME could dummy up an "app" that looks and acts like it, but isn't.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

well, the demand for ventiators is not as high as what was initially projected. New York started giving away their extra ventilators a month ago, and so did other U.S. states. The USA got on board with this a while ago with some emergency production orders, and Ford started building them. Now the USA is giving them to other countries on an 'as needed' basis, so Dyson probably thought there was no need, we have plenty now.

(hopefully not too 'off topic' for the discussion on the article)

bombastic bob Silver badge
Big Brother

Re: Nothing to hide here

"People with an aversion to being snooped on have a very high and inflated opinion of themselves."

No, the problem is when AGGRESSIVE government law enforcement people decide "they want to get you", and can ENTRAP you based on information they've collected on you, that ordinary people can be in DANGER of being locked up for the rest of their lives, over "process crimes" and things they may have only marginally been involved in. This is why EVIDENTIARY RULES need to be put into place AND enforced within the government itself, to protect the PEOPLE _FROM_ THE GOVERNMENT. (Right, General Flynn?)

I don't think anyone wants to go BACK to the kinds of governmental abuses that resulted in the creation of the Magna Charta (and subsequent documents), which were made, in order to help put a stop to the abuses. Parliament making a law to roadblock the abuses is "a good start".

So yeah back to the article - this is why you do NOT want your personal data hoovered up by government agencies, ever, EVEN simple "contact tracing". You think private companies tracking you is bad? GDPR helps put a stop to THAT. But private companies can not JAIL you. Governments CAN.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Thank you

"Your gran's advice to wash your hands and not pick your nose is still best advice."

Heh - reminds me of a book title, something about learning everything important in kindergarten.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Meh

Re: Thank you

"in the UK, the official death toll is currently 36042. The estimated excess mortality is in the range of another 20k, so probably at least 50k UK brits have died already:"

Just to keep things in perspective, how does this compare to a normal Influenza year? Additionally, there is significant evidence that 'cause of death' determinations here in the USA are literaly being "padded" for COVID-19 as the CAUSE of death, rather than something else like heart failure or a stroke. Although it is believed that COVID-19 _CAN_ (and probably HAS) resulted in stroke and heart failure, it does not identify it as a direct cause simply to have the virus test positive in a patient that dies.

In any case, "protect the vulnerable" is an obvious thing. Yet I do not see a phone contact app that makes arbitrary "decisions" based on distance and time to say "you are infected" or "you are not infected" would help protect the vulnerable at ALL.

Document? Library? A new kind of component? Microsoft had a hard time explaining what its Fluid Framework is

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pirate

Re: Will this shite never stop?

interesting point - I started reading that and saw this: "What drives me crazy is that ever since my first job I’ve realized that as a developer, I usually average about two or three hours a day of productive coding".

It is generally my own practice to bill one of two ways: a) I'm on site and it's "on site time"; b) I'm at home and it's "when I'm productive" time. I can generally get a full week in with 'b' but sometimes must do 'a' to satisfy a client''s need. So I end up working "in spurts" when doing 'b' and it's quite effective to go for 2-3 hours, play some video games, get back to it, etc. until you've done your hours... but I digress.

So this is a typical "productive day" for a Micros~1.DEV ? And the article might say it all, it took him WAY too many paragraphs to get to the point. "A little every day" is interesting, but if his day starts with web surfing while "on the clock" his manager should restrict his browsing hours (or NONE at all).

There must be a ZILLION alternate projects at Micros~1 that people could volunteer for during those "think about it" periods that we all get. A prioritized list might help. Go down the bug list and submit a patch. That's a good start. Audit a function from the list of things that need an audit. Then get back to your normal assignment and you might have NEW inspiration. But then again, that's how I try to do things. Juggle mutliple projects so you can "stay manic" and pound out code all day long.

Even better, hybrid office/home work. Go in for 4-5 hours, to beat the traffic but make the meetings, then take it home with you for 2-3 hours a day. [that works VERY well for me when I need to be on site]. Surf the web while you drink coffee at the start of the day, check mail to see if anyone has a particular issue, drive in with MUCH lighter traffic, maybe think about stuff from morning mail, arrive, do meetings and get things done, leave before 4, drive home in relatively light traffic, then arrive home, read 'The Register' and comment on a few things, then finish up your day while eating your dinner and don't spill it on the keyboard....

A nice PRODUCTIVE day, where you're actually doing WORK for the hours you're being paid.

(pirate flag for being such a PRIVATEER, harrr)

Admittedly with the 'work at home' part, the ability to collaborate on documents now becomes a LITTLE more important. but chances are that you could do that BETTER by sitting in a room at lunch, with plates of sandwiches and with 2 or 3 people standing behind the fastest typist (or with the monitor contents on a projected screen), going over the collab document one part at a time and letting "that one guy" do the typing and combine things, fix it, etc. while you discuss the contents and "collaborate" the old fashioned way.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Trollface

Re: Fluid Shit more like...

maybe they're going with the Bruce Lee reference, being "like water". Still "market speak" though.

This is going to become a prime example of what happens when marketing tries to engineer stuff.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Meh

"JavaScript is essential for client-side scripting on web applications"

If it can't be done with just CSS and HTML5, or on the server end, you probably shouldn't be doing it on the client side. My opinion. But yeah no doubt C-pound devs are familiar with JavaScript, especially because C-pound was originally derived (like JavaScript was) from Java...

bombastic bob Silver badge
FAIL

Re: Will this shite never stop?

yet more client+bandwidth expensive "but light on the server" bloatware to ruin productivity for MOST things while claiming "uber-flexibility" to a targeted niche of customer 'wants' [not necessarily 'needs'], using (of course) JAVASCRIPT.

At least, that's what it sounds like to ME. I was LESS than 'unimpressed' with Google Docs and their alleged ability to do the same thing with their on-line editor (using JavaScript in a browser) that performs like a pregnant elephant in a tutu.

What is it about these "developers" and their OBSESSION with CLIENT-SIDE JAVASCRIPT? it's not "a solution"... more like THE PROBLEM with "online anything" these days.

And just how often are multiple people trying to edit the same document at the same time anyway? Normally a collaboration has people sandboxing their own stuff, and an "editor" or supervisor combines it all. I expect that online latency issues affecting the ability to even EDIT the thing are going to be worse for getting stuff done than doing things "the old fashioned way".

It's worth pointing out that we have methods that are well defined for working with source code in a programming environment. Perhaps using THAT approach makes better sense, when working on a collaborated document, provided that you bust it up into "work units" or similar so that .the results can be later combined by "the editor" responsible for it.

DirectX comes to Linux (via WSL2): Microsoft unveils tricks needed to flash a GPU at a penguin

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

agreed, OpenCL and OpenGL should be where the cross-platform development is done, and NOT some Micros~1.ONE "solution". But "Not Invented Here" for those things is driving the DirectX way of doing it.

However, if their DirectX drivers do what nVidia drivers do on Linux and BSD, that is having a GLX kernel module extension to access GPUs more efficiently via OpenGL, and the Micros~1 library gives you THAT level of performance with the SAME code on the Linux side, then I suppose what's under the hood or whatever name they give it doesn't really matter much.

Far-right leader walks free from court after conviction for refusing to hand his phone passcode over to police

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pirate

Re: Astonishing that he is still a far right person

"it is foolish to foster far right ideas."

Distinguishing 'far right' as fascism, racism, etc. - then yes.

Howeverl, you should be able to have whatever ideas you WANT to have. I really don't care if people think things that are inappropriate by MY standards. In short: NOT _MY_ business.

On the other hand, if you ACT inappropriately, that's something else entirely.

I ALSO don't believe that "give me your PIN" types of surveillance at airports are all that effective anyway, and MOST people view that sort of thing as a violation of civil rights. Police are better doing "old fashioned" police work, where they can build a case that is NOT likely to be challenged later on as a violation of civil rights. Yeah it takes a *bit* more work, but the results are MUCH better when they convict!

And as others have also pointed out, simple measures like "dumb phone" "spare phone" "different SIM" "erase history" etc. makes this kind of surveillance completely worthless.

Worthy of note: the hypocrisy of protesting 'fascist' style surveillance techniques, from an alleged fascist...

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pirate

Re: And the moral of this story is ...

keep the REAL SIM and SD cards in your pocket. switch 'em out with "spares" when you get off the plane or before arriving at the airport to depart... and figure out where the 'erase all data' button is, too. And change the PIN to 1234 [the same combination that an idiot would use on his luggage] for that short duration of time.

is it as easy to erase Chrome history on Android as it is in Linux? There's this one directory - just nuke it, all history etc. GONE. yeah, there should be "an app for that"...

Capture the horrors of war in razor-sharp quality with this ruggedised Samsung phone – or just lob it at enemy forces

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pirate

Re: It's ugly

I still WANT one! 'Coolness' factor.

Could it be? Really? The Year of Linux on the Desktop is almost here, and it's... Windows-shaped?

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: If only!

It's probably some kind of locked resource being owned while libraries and other stuff all load up in the new window (not Firefox?). It probably related to FF's javascript engine. It's where I'd look first.

3rd party libs are also likely to blame for this, or just simply javascript (in general). It's also one reason why I don't play video in browsers, other than I don't like the stuttering due to bandwidth issues. 'youtube-dl' is your friend.

One of the things I've discovered about Linux applications (in general) and the HEAVY dependency on 3rd party shared libs, is that it takes TIME to load those shared libs whenever you load an application. I have been working on an X11 toolkit for years, when I have spare time between gigs [and am not SO ANGRY AT THE REASON WHY I AM NOT WORKING THAT I CAN BARELY THINK... like *NOW*]. The one thing I've discovered is just HOW much time a typical Linux application spends loading up all of those things. GTK applications with Bonobo and Cairo and all of those *kinds* of things are the 'bloatiest' and seem to take FOREVER to load all of that up. Firefox is NO exception.

I actually added a splash screen and a 1/2 second delay, to initialize the clipboard ahead of time instead of in parallel with startup, AND not "just pop up super fast" as it had initially. it was a shock typing the command and then *poof* it was THERE... it actually was a bit un-nerving seeing it run TOO fast!

But it was also clear what "everything else" is doing WRONG. And it's wrapped around the use of ALL of those SHARED LIBS, and how SLOWLY they all load up!

(so it's not Linux, it's most likely the applications that run on it, and the libs they use, that cause this problem)

bombastic bob Silver badge
Linux

Re: If only!

I'm using Ryzen+nVidia (though my CPU is AMD Ryzen 5 2600 6 core), built it just under a year ago. I'm running FreeBSD though. I don't expect Linux would give me any trouble.

Most likely in your case you simply did NOT install the correct kernel driver for your nVidia adaptor. That much is likely to give you some grief, yeah.

Hint: don't boot into a GUI. Boot into a console. THEN figure out how to get the GUI to work.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Linux

Re: If only!

"the only reason to run Windows is because you have an app that only runs on Windows"

Following NT4 and Win '98, this has been so, at least from MY perspective... [though i did not mind 2k and XP, later versions of windows have given us NO real reasons to WANT it other than to run the things we want to run]

History: Back in the early 90's, IBM and Micros~1 came up with a 3D Skeuomorphic look for a computer desktop for OS/2 PM 1.2 . Unfortunately, it only worked on a PS/2. *KNOWING* that this was the future of computing, Micros~1 updated Windows 3.0 to include the Win386 stuff as well as this 3D skeuomorphic look, all in a SINGLE package. This *MADE* *THEM*. Literally. People WANTED the Solitaire game, if nothing else.

Now we're STUCK with "take it or I shove it into your body via an unpleasant method without lubrication" Win-10-nic, with a new 'lipstick on the boar' feature - it will RUN Linux GUI APPLICATIONS!

Still, I welcome that last feature, and hope Redmond doesn't realize what they're doing: They're making it possible for DEVELOPERS TO TARGET LINUX and STILL have their creation be "runnable" on Windows!

What I'd REALLY like to see, and would PAY MONEY for: a subsystem for Linux that lets Windows (primarily Win32) application binaries run like a "blessed version" of Wine, with both 32-bit AND 64-bit simultaneously supported in that they can work together (Last I checked Wine only supports one or the other).

(That is what I was hoping this article was about, but I knew it would be the other way 'round)

And, for developers, a LIBRARY that would LET Win32 APPLICATIONS RUN NATIVELY for X11 would be even BETTER! Then "compile for Linux" would be a LOT easier, and no more excuses!

Project Reunion: Microsoft's attempt to tear down all those barriers it's built for Windows developers over the years

bombastic bob Silver badge
Linux

Re: So let me get this straight

"Just stick with Win32 and we'll see who blinks first, the huge mass of Win32 developers or MS trying to bork Win32 in Windows 10."

And make sure the version info (and/or manifest) and DLL resolution lets you run on 7, or even XP!!!

['GetProcAddress()' works for anything 'new' you might need]

it's one reason I still use DevStudio 2010 for any winders-stuff... and do NOT allow any '.NOT' bindings for my C/C++ applications! (And static linking for runtime and class libs)

related, this: https://www.theregister.co.uk/2020/05/19/wsl2_gui_linux_apps_windows/

Maybe we should JUST develop Linux applications from now on... ?

bombastic bob Silver badge
Meh

Re: Borkzilla looking for a new foot to shoot

Micros~1.UWP (aka 2D FLATTY FLATSO McFLATFACE) is being sustained with an attempted 'breath of life' because of "No, really, we'll get it RIGHT this time!" kinds of thinking.

And, if possible, they'll use an illegitimately-spawned abomination-creation 'umbrella lib' (like Micros~1.net) to try and ENFORCE migration to it until we developers all nod our heads in the 'yes' direction in time with our overlords' instructions.

And "more universal acceptance" of UWP-ness would KILL Windows 7 for good, in their eyes. You KNOW they want to do this.

I guess the history of Silverlight will repeat itself, but with a different name.

Many people have suggested that Micros~1 wants to ELIMINATE the Win32 API. A token attempt at some kind of "overlapping library" doesn't convince me otherwise...

NASA's Human Spaceflight boss hits eject a week before SpaceX crew launch

bombastic bob Silver badge
Holmes

Re: I wonder

with everything else that is going on, I speculate that it could have been the choice to NOT shut down the program during the corona-scare. Personally I see that as the CORRECT choice (i.e. NOT to shut down).

Another possibility might be to move forward with SpaceX before Boeing is ready with their competing system, so "all eggs in one basket" with SpaceX for the moment. But Baikonur is still an option... (and who knows, in the future, maybe India's space program). So better move forward, or be left behind.

(icon for the amateur sleuthing)

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Going while the going's good

"sheer payload to LEO in a single shot"

A mere stepping stone to a lunar cargo "space truck" hauling whatever we want [people, stuff, etc.] to and from the moon on a regular schedule. Personally, I think this is the best model to use.

It's that first part of the journey that's the most expensive, getting to LEO. Example, Apollo missions, where the 1st 2 stages lift the 3rd stage and LEM + Command Module into LEO, then 3rd stage pushes the LEM and Command Module into a Lunar trajectory, The vast majority of fuel [and rocket] was spent just getting to LEO.

So it's "UNIX Principle" applied to rocketry: "do one thing, well" - use the LEO tool to get the "space truck" and its fuel+cargo into LEO, then re-use the truck a bunch of times hauling the cargo+people.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Going while the going's good

It's my understanding that the re-usability of 1st stage rockets doesn't DIRECTLY apply to manned missions except that the manned mission booster can be re-used afterwards for an un-manned launch. But yeah THAT level of re-usability makes it cost less overall since the entire booster cost isn't eaten up by that one launch.

It seems to me that the more likely cost reducing factor is the NUMBER of launches, and a level of mass production of the same launch vehicle for all of them. It's sort of like the UNIX principle, i.e. "do one thing, well". So they build that ONE booster, hyperfocus on reliability, give it some nice bells/whistles wit the ability to land on its tail to be re-used, on a moving ship out at sea, and voila!

But the 10 year time frame is actually quite a bit longer than the Mercury project, which (I think this is right) took less than 4 years from planning to an actual manned launch. But we were in a hurry, and Alan Shepherd was a test pilot.

You know this Land of the Free thing, yeah? Well then, why allow the FBI to trawl through America's browsing history without a warrant?

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Fourth AND Fifth Amendments

It is the nature of governments to become TYRANNIES if the people allow it.

I definitely have to side with the ACLU this time. Too bad they're not consistent with liberty and the U.S. Constitution on OTHER matters, though...

bombastic bob Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: And who is shocked?

and biting into those Tide pillows... 15 seconds of fame, 15 days in the hospital

bombastic bob Silver badge
Trollface

Re: land of the free...

that's a LOT of pessimism! Now I'll need to wave a flag for a while to recover...

THAT, and protest the shutdowns in my Guy Fawkes mask!

Beer rating app reveals homes and identities of spies and military bods, warns Bellingcat

bombastic bob Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: FB location

And "or log in with Facebook" in their application or on their web site is ANOTHER red flag... [it's one of the big ways that FB uses to track you]. Of course, if you DO have the FB 'previously logged on' cookies and ALSO see the FB icon or the "or log in with Facebook" option, chances are they ALREADY tracked you there and just want you to confirm you actually WANTED them to.

NASA launches guide to Lunar etiquette now that private operators will share the Moon with governments

bombastic bob Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Oceanic fishing

good analogy. 'international waters' - space should be about the same.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Has anyone told Donnie?

There's no KNOWN oil on the moon. Oil does not require organic material to be formed; however, pools of dead dinosaurs work pretty well on Earth. But yeah lunar conditions do not match earth conditions for oil formation. This does not mean it is NOT there, and may suggest we wouldn't know how to find it (easily).

(apparently lunar carbon is deposited by solar wind as part of the regolith, but to form oil, would need to be trapped deep below the surface along with hydrogen - making it unlikely but not impossible)

Still I think Trump is just looking for a chance to advance further into space. It's been ~50 years that we've been "held back" from going past earth orbit, and it's time to just DO it. Again. Do something 'cool', or 'awesome', or 'inspiring', or even 'glorious'. Do something worth CELEBRATING! [it's like when your sports team wins the championship]

I'm so tired of all of the PESSIMISM, that having some OPTIMISM keeps me from going COMPLETELY insane.

Rust marks five years since its 1.0 release: The long and winding road actually works

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: On speed

Messaging is less desirable unless you have a hyper-efficient message queue set up. It can be done, but it would be less ideal than using standard synchronization objects. In some cases, setting up a message polling loop (like you do for Windows old-school programming) is a good idea, but I'd guess that for the vast majority of uses, it's excess overhead and would perform poorly by comparison.

I actually set something up like this in my X11 toolkit, to handle X11 events asynchronously from a queue - I re-prioritized Expose events [for painting] and combined them when possible to speed up draw operations. Also set it up for user-type messages to bypass the X server and be posted directly to the queue - but it's pretty big code and too complex for most cases, yeah. It's not something I'd really want to have to do again, either.

(for IPC a generic messaging system makes sense, but not thread-to-thread.)

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: On speed

STL threads not the same as what I remember reading about Rust though, having loops that automatically split into threads depending on your specifications (as one example). That's kinda what I meant. i do not recall any feature in C++ that could do that directly.

Having a C++ lingo feature that uses the STL objects for an alternative for() would be interesting. Not sure if any of the newer compiler features might be shoehorned into doing this. But, in short, if the for() loop with threading support automatically used STL threads to spawn a separate thread for each iteration AND manage a thread pool, then that is closer to what I was thinking of.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: On speed

yeah C++11 - I think I remember looking at that, STL support for threads (googled just now, saw it - yep). But I'm not an STL fan for a number of reasons and since I've been doing it "the old way" before threads were 'cool', I just continue to do it the way I always have. And, like I mentioned before, I sometimes run into "some standard library" doing things the WRONG way, and end up using my own code to fix/workaround their bugs/features.

For trivial things, using the pthread lib in Linux or 'CreateThread()' in windows is pretty straightforward. Most simple threading things would just translate the STL thread stuff into that inline and 'no difference' in performance. So if I saw it in someone else's code I'd just leave it as-is. But there are cases, especially when background tasks are being done, etc. or the "thread pool" you mentioned (something I might use in a 'work unit' manager object), when waiting in idle state, Linux, FreeBSD, and Windows all have the same problem, of spinning CPU at 100% if you don't explicitly enter some kind of wait state within the kernel, and that usually involves a synchronization object or an explicit time delay.

And, last I looked, Windows 10's TIFKAM/UWP system is guilty of having this very problem. You can see it during application start when two TIFKAM/UWP applications are trying to exchange info for some reason. Maybe this has been fixed, but last I checked it wasn't... (and so my point about rolling my own solution that uses my own experiences to avoid such problems and avoid arguing about validity of pull requests that would fix it but for some reason do not get approval).

It might be interesting to try and repro this problem with two Rust applications.

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: On speed

"if you can get any of your computations done in parallel"

multi-thread parallelism is good in SOME cases, but not all. I took a look at how Rust manages this and I wasn't too keen on it. Since I've done this myself in C and C++ using pthreads and windows threading, I know what's going on under the hood. [I once wrote a cooperative thread library for Windows 3.x the 16-bit OS decades ago, similar to fibers - I've been doing this kind of thing a LOOooong time!]

In short, every time you create a thread you have to initialize it within the OS, which takes a bit of time. In the case of a quick sort, half the process in the initial part of the algorithm [the pivot] must be single threaded, and the followup can be multiple-threaded (in my multi-thread demo, qsort with 4 threads is about 2.5 times faster than single-thread, YMMV).

Typically I would use work units and a mini-scheduler to limit thread count, and since I've written this sort of thing before, adapting an existing one is pretty straightforward. The 2 main features, "spawn a thread" and "wait for all work units on this thingy to finish" need to be built into it like an object, but it's not that hard to do. The pthreads 'join a thread' is very useful for this purpose. With Winders it's just a bit more difficult though [not much just a bit]. No spinning on 'yield()' either, you have to go into true 'wait state' and NOT do rapid polling, or the CPU will read 100% all of the time when it's really NOT. [I've had people try and argue with me over this, too, yet it's easily observed when you do it wrong - but then again, does Rust do it RIGHT?].

When the overhead of creating multiple parallel threads is ABSTRACTED, then it won't be obvious to the coder that his threaded solution becomes LESS EFFICIENT. And it easily CAN.

And anything that's trivially multi-threaded doesn't need "all that overhead" that I'd expect from the internals of Rust. Those could easily be coded in plain-old 'C'. (DFT comes to mind)

Still, having threading built into the lingo is interesting. Perhaps in the next evolution of C++ it'll be there, too.

India’s contact-tracing app unleashes KaiOS on feature phones

bombastic bob Silver badge
Unhappy

"the Android paired bluetooth device has to be completely reset before it can pair with Android again"

Apple uses something called MFi for "legacy" bluetooth (i.e. NOT 'BTLE'). Apparently this is messing with the base processor for some reason...

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pirate

making use mandatory is unreasonable

(title quoted from article)

I agree 100% with this statement (from the article). And if it has demonstrable security issues, they should DEFINITELY be published [and then fixed].

(oops that battery JUST keeps falling out! So much for 'mandatory'...)

Vint Cerf suggests GDPR could hurt coronavirus vaccine development

bombastic bob Silver badge
Meh

"Its time to understand the difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law isn't it?"

I have a novel suggestion: ASK the person that owns the data if it can be used, in writing, and THEN ensure proper privacy protection as much as possible.

Then you comply with GDPR [as I understand it], and are STILL able to do whatever research you need with the data.

Yeah, treating the owners of the data as PEOPLE instead of STATISTICS - what a novel concept!

Cyber attack against UK power grid middleman Elexon sparks in-house IT recovery efforts

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Backups

"A sophisticated hacker would infect backups for months before pulling the trigger."

a sophisticated IT manager (read: BOFH) would realize this, and re-load affected operating systems from scratch - THEN restore just the data [and nothing that's executable]. In cases where boot viruses occur in motherboard EEPROM, this may be a bit more difficult, however...

(but a proper phorensic analysis of the scope of infection would tell you this, most likely).

In general, however, crooks are dumb. A simple "restore from backup" probably worked fine.

India opens its space industry to private companies

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Space has been 'militarized' the moment Sputnik launched. But I doubt India does anything more than take pictures of the earth in "strategic" locations, just like everybody else.

Actually if they do a LOT of "space port rental" to companies in India AND from other nations, it could give them an advantage over other nations that aren't so lucky as to be so close to the equator.

Though for polar and other 'non-equatorial' orbits, there's no advantage to such a location. So spy satellites won't be sent from there, most likely.

The earth is roughly 24,000 miles in diameter, so it's moving about 1,000 miles an hour near the equator. That compared to Canaveral, which is about 28 degrees North, making it roughly 880 mph. This difference is significant enough but the latitude of the Baikonur Cosmodrome is ~46 degrees, which is only ~690mph. So launching from India gives you a ~300mph boost over what you'd get at Baikonur.

(the difference between 8 deg N and 5 deg N, to point out, is insignificant - cos(latitude) * 1000mph for the approximate rotational speed at that point on earth).

A real loch mess: Navy larks sunk by a truculent torpedo

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Oops!

I cannot confirm nor deny this [which is the standard response for something that may be classified if confirmed or denied]. But in the movie 'Hunt for Red October' the Alpha captain disabled the safeties on his torpedos so that Capt. Ramius could not go in a semicircle to avoid getting blown to smithereens (and then he was later hoisted by his own petard when they came around and hit HIS sub). If the movie has any accuracy when compared to real life, there ya go.

Huge if true... Trump explodes as he learns open source could erode China tech ban

bombastic bob Silver badge
Meh

Re: Oh dear

Only those "news" agencies that regularly cite "sources say" without doing actual journalism, as a pipe organ for a specific political position (one that would continue to hate Trump even if he were to personally cure cancer and end all poverty) would look upon the title in which the initials for 'SATIRE' are clearly visible, and either ignore it or miss it entirely, and then report this as if it were fact SIMPLY because they'd want to believe it to be so.

Most people, however, seem to have got the joke from the beginning, though it would be BETTER satire if it were grounded in truth, and not just 'pandering to the perception'...

Russia admits, yup, the Americans are right: One of our rocket's tanks just disintegrated in Earth's orbit

bombastic bob Silver badge
Devil

Re: Honest question....

Reminds me of something from the Navy: "Sweepers, man your brooms"

Or in this case, similar styled satellites. We're gonna need them.

/me wonders if you could string a net of some kind between 2 of them, made of some kind of carbon fiber with high tensile strength and low mass

Beer gut-ted: As many as '70 million pints' spoiled during coronavirus pandemic must be destroyed in Britain

bombastic bob Silver badge
Pint

Re: It's probably not actually "bad".

right, if lager isn't chilled it spoils and tastes nasty. Back in the day as a teenager I worked in a drug store that would occasionally put Coors on sale in cases, but they got warm in the warehouse and out on the floor. The beer truck driver said it ruins the beer, and he oughta know because the beer was always delivered in refrigerated trucks. Well, people bought it anyway... even though the taste was no longer "ideal" [this was ~40 years ago to put it into perspective].

but nowadays I usually drink ale since pilsner/lager beers give me a headache...

Mirror mirror on the wall, why will my mouse not work at all?

bombastic bob Silver badge
Trollface

Re: obvious

we're dealing with a 12:00 flasher - everything in the house is ALWAYS FLASHING 12:00 !!!

Time to ask "Is there a child in the house?" [3 dead trolls in a baggie, yeah]

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