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How Intel and Micron May Finally Kill the Hard Disk Drive

JakartaDean Re:LOL (438 comments)

In 1987, I bought an 80 MEGAbyte drive for $775 (around $1600 today), thinking how amazing it was that disk drives had broken the $10/MB barrier. When the first 1GB drives came out a few years later, I remember thinking, "Who would trust that much data to a single device? What an amazing single point of failure!" Now there are 128GB MicroSD cards for under $1/GB. Even understanding the technology, the mind boggles.

You got a deal. Around 1989 I sold a 315MB IBM "Winchester" drive to the phone company, for a whopping $10,095 (list price at the time). It slid into a fairly clunky PS/2 Model 80, as I recall.

about three weeks ago

How "Big Ideas" Are Actually Hurting International Development

JakartaDean Re: Why giving ? (92 comments)

China has the right idea. If you don't work, you don't eat.

I imagine that would do wonders to clean up my city's streets from the hundreds of young people who prefer to camp there 24/7 versus getting a job.

Where I live and work (as a CSR consultant), Indonesia, people also don't eat if they don't get a job. Among other failings, malnutrition of children under 5 years runs at around 35%. That causes stunting and is associated with poor cognitive test scores, which is in turn correlated with lower income. I don't have the data for China handy, but your solution is overly simplistic and reflects poorly on your understanding of the article and the issue.

about a month ago

City of Toronto Files Court Injunction Against Uber

JakartaDean Re:Don't go the way of Vancouver (169 comments)

Was just in Vancouver and learned that they've done away with Uber. It was horrible. Not enough taxis so it was impossible to get around the city. Frankly, it will impact my decision on whether or not I go back to visit. Unless your taxi companies can offer the same level of service, killing Uber will result in an impact to tourism... maybe just from me, but it'll be an impact. :)

Toronto has poor to adequate taxi service. Vancouver has NO taxi service. It is not a taxi town, everyone drives cars. Taxis, when you can get them (airport or phone in) cost real money. Public transit is perfectly fine for the young and poor. Vancouver also has the worst traffic in North America, according to Wikipedia.

about a month ago

City of Toronto Files Court Injunction Against Uber

JakartaDean Re:Dubious claims (169 comments)

Yeah, I thought it was brave of him not to post AC with a comment like that.

about a month ago

One In Three Jobs Will Be Taken By Software Or Robots By 2025, Says Gartner

JakartaDean Re:Yes yes yes (405 comments)

You could work the same hours (per family) today and still have a vastly higher standard of living than people had in the 60s. You might have a lower standard of living than your neighbors, with 2 earners, and that's mostly what people care about, but that's a relative, not absolute, measure. And we are absolutely doing better now.

I understand your point -- please don't jump up and down saying I don't get it. I disagree with it. You are correct that your money today, even in nominal terms, can arguably buy more value in manufactured goods. That may or may not be true, but it is only a small subset of what we buy. Manufacturing (both what we buy and who we employ) is a constantly decreasing share of the economy in most countries -- including some in the developing world. Services can generally be grouped into professional and unskilled, and there are more and more people looking for fewer and fewer unskilled jobs.

Others are correctly pointing out that the important criterion is what the person with the median income can buy. That excludes the education many of us older folks got, the DB pension our parents got and many other things. Medicine is probably a wash, depending on where you live and in the US your coverage.

There is, tragically, no doubt that the median earner has experienced a decline in his standard of living. Real median incomes are declining, and the cheaper cost / higher functionality of manufactured goods today is not enough to compensate.

about 2 months ago

To Really Cut Emissions, We Need Electric Buses, Not Just Electric Cars

JakartaDean Re:The London Bus is a good place to start (491 comments)

I've long thought flywheels were an ideal component of an urban bus, but you wouldn't need them for an electric bus with batteries since the motors are efficient-enough generators under braking. For a diesel bus they make a lot of sense in theory, but machining them is expensive, and to be really efficient they would need to spin really, really fast, with possibly deadly results if it begins to wobble.

about 3 months ago

Cause of Global Warming 'Hiatus' Found Deep In the Atlantic

JakartaDean Re:Every week there's a new explanation of the hia (465 comments)

But the bottom line is: people aren't as stupid as you'd like to think they are...

Your post is strong evidence that at least one of us is. Since you're taking on and defaming scientists as a group, perhaps you would care to share your analysis leading to your figures of "trillions" and "5%".

about 3 months ago

I suffer from jet lag ...

JakartaDean Re:Sunshine is the Cure (163 comments)

I was waiting for someone to posts this. I've flown from Asia to Canada (12 time zones) a few times a year for two decades now, and the way to adjust is getting out in the sun. Driving is sufficient. A few hours of sun exposure daily and I can shift 12 time zones in 2 days or so. Used to take me 5.

about 6 months ago

Bloomberg's Trading Terminals Now Providing Bitcoin Pricing

JakartaDean Re:I wonder (119 comments)

Everybody who's against Bitcoin is mad because they didn't mine it in the early days.

I didn't invest in google in the early days either, but I don't hate them.

I hate bitcoin for a number of reason. The few that top the list: 1) I hate the idea of having all of these computers working harder and harder, using more and more energy, and every day there being more miners setting up more computers, all of it in an unproductive pursuit of nothing but wealth. The energy wasted for no real societal gain makes it more socially useless than a marketing department for a law firm.

2) The price varies so wildly, but it's all based off of nothing. At least with stocks, you have company metrics and financials you can at least try to use to figure out where it's going. At least with national currencies, you can look at what the country is doing politically and financially to try and guess where the currency is going. With bithcoin, it's like it's decided by a magic eight ball...there is nothing you can base decisions on other than a random guess.

Here's where we disagree. I don't believe fundamentals influence, in any way, exchange rates. What influences exchange rates is only expectations of future exchange rates. These are regularly very different from past experience. I speak from intense personal experience in Indonesia in 1999, when the rate of the local currency dropped from 2,500 to the dollar to more than 15,000 in a little more than a month.

Stock prices yes, exchange rates no -- they are solely based on subjective impressions of future trends.

about 8 months ago

Blood of World's Oldest Woman Hints At Limits of Life

JakartaDean Re:Bank them (333 comments)

Real respect is dragging grandpa's corpse to several pubs for a last night of drinking with family and friends.

I know you're joking, but there's nothing I would want more.

about 8 months ago

The Design Flaw That Almost Wiped Out an NYC Skyscraper

JakartaDean Re:yes, I've used a Professional Engineer. also a (183 comments)

That's actually an interesting engineering ethics issue: Can you, as a licensed software engineer, in good conscience release software under any license with such clauses, without totally violating your responsibilities and duties as an engineer?

Why not? As long as you explicitly note that you are NOT guaranteeing it under your engineering license, and you aren't providing it under conditions where signed-off software would be required, why would it be unethical?

Ethics -- in general, not in the sense of a legislated code of ethics -- requires I stand by any guarantees I make. It doesn't require I always make such guarantees.

Actually, in Canada I believe you can't do what you're proposing, and that is probably true for many other common law countries. You can't turn off your professionalism, because you can't withdraw from the duty of care you owe to your customers (even if you're not paid). This is due to the Hedley-Burne decision

I learned this almost 30 years ago in Engineering school, but I'm reasonably certain it still holds.

about 8 months ago

Blender Foundation Video Taken Down On YouTube For Copyright Violation

JakartaDean Sony not Youtube? (306 comments)

Well, first of all many major copyright holders have special deals with YouTube where they don't actually send DMCA requests. In that case it's just a private agreement between Sony and YouTube on content monitoring, at best you have a slander suit but no basis for a perjury. Secondly, they may have a legal claim to copyright on the whole clip reel as a collection - basically the selection and composition of clips - and that's enough to get them out of the perjury part. In generic terms, "Under penatlity of perjury, we are the copyright holders of movie X. We believe that the posted scene Y is in violation of our copyright on X." Even if that last part is wrong because it's freely licensed or in the public domain or for some other reason not eligible for copyright it's not under perjury. It sucks, but any competent lawyer will manage to wiggle Sony out of any trouble.

The youtube page in fact says: "This video contains content from Sony Pictures Movies & Shows, who has blocked it on copyright grounds."

Assuming they're as careful with their language as I am, that says the Sony, not Youtube, initiated the takedown.

about 8 months ago

Judge Overrules Samsung Objection To Jury Instructional Video

JakartaDean Re:Sounds Reasonable (232 comments)

And the judge declined to explain her rationale. I'm not accusing her of bias, despite her record with these two litigants, but she should certainly have seen fit to shine a little light onto her thinking. Poor.

about 9 months ago

Judge Overrules Samsung Objection To Jury Instructional Video

JakartaDean Why??? (232 comments)

Why would she allow a prejudicial video when an alternative, with no products from either side, is available? The entire text of her ruling reads:

Samsung’s objection to Apple’s proposed version of the Federal Judicial Center instructional video (ECF No. 1534) is overruled. The parties shall bring the November 2013 version of the video, “The Patent Process: An Overview for Jurors,” and shall include the handout referenced in the video in the jury binders.

The article apparently originally appeared on Recode.net so better to use primary source (which has the ruling and both videos.

about 9 months ago

How Ford's Virtual Reality Lab Helps Engineers

JakartaDean Re:Not to be too cynical but (49 comments)

The old Beetles were so light that it was often possible to simply _lift_ or push them out of trouble when they got stuck in snow or mud: they actually floated for a while if they ever landed in water. Lifting them out of trable happened repeatedly when I was much younger and snow plows buried my old car.

I recall many years ago in high school a great prank. An occasional supply teacher we didn't much like drove a Beetle. One day six of us lifted it from the parking lot and placed it between two trees, one touching each bumper. I never learned how he got it out.

about 9 months ago

NASA Admits It Gave Jet Fuel Discounts To Google Execs' Company

JakartaDean Re:They sold it at cost? (126 comments)

You have the mentality of a peasant. Whatever the nobles do, it must be OK because they would never take advantage of their position at your expense. They're so much more deserving then you.

Let's use a car analogy: suppose that you buy gas at the same station that Google execs do. They get charged the rate that the gas costs at the refinery, and you pay retail. Their gas is 25% cheaper (made up value) then yours. You have to pay for shipping costs, infrastructure costs for the service station (electricity, upkeep), the salaries of everyone involved between the refinery and the pump, etc. All that stuff has to be paid for to get the gas to the pump, so you are subsidizing their gas.

Except it's not a private company selling the gas, it's government services paid for by your taxes.

+5 Insightful? I could see +5 Vituperative, but your post lacks both insight and manners. Rather than calling him a peasant, why didn't you spend time reading the linked letter and article widely cited above? NASA says, for example, "While we concluded that the fuel arrangement between Ames and H211 did not result in an economic loss to NASA or DLA-Energy..." The cost H211 paid was the fully loaded cost. Go look that up in an management accounting text. There were no government services paid for by anyone's taxes. The price they paid was below market rates -- at the time the deal was signed all fuel was provided by DoD and sold at subsidized price (DoD craft) or fully loaded cost (non-DoD craft, including the H211 craft that NASA sometimes used). Here's a flash for you: sometimes these craft just flew in the air, so they didn't have the option of going to another "gas station" down the road -- Moffet Field was the only game in town for NASA, and was often convenient for H211 folks. Cost recovery is the default option for charges at most airports, and managers are very good at calculating fully loaded costs.

The problem is that H211 was getting a better deal than other craft at other airports in the area, not that the government or taxpayer was losing money. Given how much NASA was saving by having easy access to H211's aircraft, everyone was winning. However, NASA decided it looked bad, so to avoid any allegations of impropriety (like yours), it was in the government's interest to collect market rates and pass the profit on to the Treasury, so they've been doing that since September 2013. Mr. Schmidt's compensation is irrelevant.

about 9 months ago

NASA Admits It Gave Jet Fuel Discounts To Google Execs' Company

JakartaDean Re:Not a subsidy? (126 comments)

What I find interesting is that NASA knows how much was sold, accepts that the sale was below market value. So my first question is, "why did NASA sell fuel to anyone?" Is NASA a public fuel station for anyone? Have the "Enlighted ones who do not suffer from 'Go Fever' decided that NASA should become a "Profit Center?" What else has NASA sold, at Tax Payer expense?

I would guess that there is a long tradition of people buying fuel on credit from most or all airports. It's not like your car where you can pass one gas station you don't like and go to the next one a mile down the road. You can't take off without a flight plan and enough fuel to get you to your destination plus a reserve. The system would have evolved to allow anyone to buy fuel from the airport they're parked at now -- any other system would be at best inefficient, at worst unsafe.

about 9 months ago

Walmart Unveils Turbine-Powered WAVE Concept Truck

JakartaDean Re:Why so many trucks? Why not railroads (242 comments)

I'm no friend of trucks, but I wanted to clarify that 80,000 is the typical maximum weight allowed for a semi-truck. That would more likely be a shorter-haul truck moving gravel or other materials instead of less dense cargo like Walmart products. For the long-haul, materials are transported by train.

I'm a friend of trucks -- pretty much everything you have ever bought made its first and last trips by truck. There's no way modern logistics are feasible -- i.e. you don't get to buy stuff -- without trucks.

The weight being carried is a function of the number of axles on the truck. Each axle is good for about 8 tons, so your 80,000 pound load (40 (short) tons) is a 22 wheel tractor-trailer. You do need to balance the weight properly given the location of the axles, but this isn't rocket science.

There is a good reason for having a generally applied and precise limit on weight per axle: the wear and tear on the road is empirically proportional to the weight per axle to the fourth power. Those overloaded trucks or improperly loaded trucks do a lot of damage to the road, much more than you could ever do with a passenger car.

about 10 months ago

It's Not Memory Loss - Older Minds May Just Be Fuller of Information

JakartaDean Re:So can I sue my college? (206 comments)

For requiring me to take a course on Victorian-era English literature as part of my engineering degree graduation requirements? By forcing me to take the course, they literally filled my brain up with useless stuff which will accelerate the onset of age-related dementia.

As an engineering graduate of 1986, I joined a group of classmates a couple of years ago on a visit to the Dean, who asked us what we would change, looking back, in the curriculum. There were two answers common to all of us: project management and English writing. We are all in management now, not practical engineering, and need words more than we need numbers and formulae. An English writing course should be required for all pure and applied science majors, in my opinion.

And I think you should have paid more attention in your one class: literally doesn't mean what you think it does.

about a year ago

Unencrypted Windows Crash Reports a Blueprint For Attackers

JakartaDean Re:Next! (103 comments)

Thanks for sharing your experience, Matt

When I first learned about this, there were two things I didn't understand: Why does Microsoft collect this data (error reports and USB insertions) and why is it sent in the clear? You and others have provided a plausible rationale for the first, but the sneakiness of the USB insertion calls home are disturbing. It still seems completely wrong to send it unencrypted. Very, very wrong in fact. Can you share why was this decision made?

about a year ago



JP Morgan Chase Attacked; data for 76million stolen

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  about 3 months ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "J.P. Morgan Chase said about 76 million households were affected by a cybersecurity attack on the bank this summer in one of the most sweeping disclosed breaches of a financial institution.

The largest U.S. bank by assets said the unknown attackers stole customers’ contact information—including names, email addresses, phone numbers and addresses. The breach, which was first disclosed in August and is still under investigation by the bank and law enforcement, extended to the bulk of the bank’s customer base, affecting an amount equivalent to two-thirds of American households. It also affected about seven million of J.P. Morgan’s small-business customers. It isn’t clear how many of those households are U.S.-based.

The bank said hackers were unable to gather detailed information on accounts, such as account numbers, passwords, Social Security numbers or dates of birth. Customer money is “safe,” the bank said in a statement to customers on Thursday."

US Supreme Court affirms legislative prayers are constitutional

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  about 8 months ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "Eugene Volokh, in the Washington Times, says, "The Court is unanimous in its view that, generally speaking, some legislative prayers are constitutionally permissible." Even the dissenters agree that "such a forum need not become a religion-free zone." Apparently the whole thing is based on tradition: "Under Marsh, legislative prayer has a distinctive constitutional warrant by virtue of tradition." Is this really the best the USA can come up with in terms of decision making at the highest level?"

Sync Your Data to the Cloud with BitTorrent

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  about a year and a half ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "According to an article in CNet, If you do not trust online storage drives for file syncing across your devices or are frustrated with storage limits, there is another player in town. BitTorrent has released a new alpha version of its Sync software, which supports syncing folders across the Internet without going through an intermediary like Dropbox, Cloud Drive, or iCloud.
The Sync software uses the standard BitTorrent decentralized file-sharing technology to establish a secure file-synchronizing routine between your various devices. It does so by use of local peer discovery, peer exchange, and static known hosts as well as DHT and classic BitTorrent trackers to establish links between your systems, and then uses standard P2P BitTorrent protocols to transfer and reassemble files in chunks."

AllTrials gaining momentum: GSK signs up

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  about 2 years ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "AllTrials was set up by several groups concerned about public access to scientific findings with a particular focus on pharmaceutical research. They have an online petition you can sign. GSK have signed it, which marks a big step towards public access to such research. Wired has covered the story, and does a good job of explaining some of the management's interest in disclosure, including a record $3 billion fine last year."
Link to Original Source

Julian Assange Closer to Packing His Bags

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  more than 2 years ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "Julian Assange lost his appeal before Britain's Supreme Court on Wednesday, which takes him another step closer to extradition to Sweden for questioning on sexual abuse accusations filed against him in August 2010.
But the court will allow Assange's attorneys to file a petition for the court to reconsider the ruling, which upheld an extradition order handed down in February 2011."

Link to Original Source

Latest iPhone Killer?

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  about 6 years ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "The latest alleged iPhone killer has been announced from, of all places, Nova Scotia, Canada. The blogosphere has picked it up, check SLOG. The original announcement of the device, named "Pomegranate" has a page up here. This technology is absolutely beyond belief. Unfortunately, there is no ship date yet — this is pure vapourware at the moment.

What will they think of next?"

Ted Stevens loses Senate Re-election Bid

JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  more than 6 years ago

JakartaDean (834076) writes "Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska, and internet regulation, fame, has lost his Senate seat. AP is reporting "Stevens was declared the loser in Alaska on Tuesday night after a two-week-long process of counting nearly 90,000 absentee and early votes from across Alaska. With this victory, Democrat Mark Begich has defeated one of the giants in the U.S. Senate by a 3,724-vote margin, a stunning end to a 40-year Senate career marred by Stevens' conviction on corruption charges a week before the election."

It's probably too early to tell what this means for internet regulation, but at least there's a better (ie >0) chance that the next committee chair will understand something about the internet."



JakartaDean JakartaDean writes  |  more than 5 years ago

In linux just use dd to write 512 zeros to /dev/hda (or /dev/sda or whatever the base drive is) for example

dd bs=1 count=512 if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda

That will wipe the boot block clean, then you can use it like a brand new drive.

Or if you want, just zero out the partition table using a seek=446 and a count=64 instead of the count=512

Thanks PalmKiller

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