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Apple Posts $18B Quarterly Profit, the Highest By Any Company, Ever

Kjella Re:18B on 75B (214 comments)

That is 24%. That means your device could be 20% cheaper and they would STILL make more money then anybody else in percentage per product in the electronics world. So instead of 500USD for the Ipad2, you could be paying 400USD and they would still make money. And some people don't think Apple is overpriced.

Don't worry, you can buy a $500 phone from my non-profit, $400 will be my for salary and $100 for a junk Android phone. Profit is an indication that you're delivering more value relative to cost than the competition, after all sales price is just a number you decide. They're not competing against some imaginary non-profit, the day Google, Microsoft etc. deliver a competing product forcing them to lower prices they will. Until then, keep blaming the one delivering what people want and not the ones who don't.

5 hours ago
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New Google Fiber Cities Announced

Kjella Re:Do you trust them? (131 comments)

Do you trust them?

...less than any other ISP? No. Just like Google funded Mozilla this is more of a long term effort to push more people and more services online, where Google can get a piece of it. The "old media" advertising budgets are still pretty huge and people willingly sign up to Google's services so there's no need to get shady. In fact their roll-out is extremely slow if they were seriously intending to become a major ISP, they're really just trying to shame the rest of the country into demanding they get the same kind of service from their incumbents. Who needs cable TV when you got gigabit service and can watch any show, any time over streaming without hitting any caps? That's what Google is selling, of course it's out of self-interest but for tech geeks I think they're on our side in this case.

yesterday
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NVIDIA GTX 970 Specifications Corrected, Memory Pools Explained

Kjella Re:Just bought two of these cards (113 comments)

Thats pretty much irrelevant. GPU ram isn't used that way at all. Its used to hold the 3D geometry, bitmaps, bump maps etc of assets and other processing data which is largely if not completely independent of screen resolution/no.of screens.

For real-time rendering of a simulated environment - that is, gaming - textures are generally stored as mipmaps so the more pixels it's going to take up on the screen, the more detailed version of the texture is used and thus the memory use rises accordingly through the entire pipeline. It's pretty easy to see if you keep resolution or texture quality constant and vary the other. If you're doing some other kind of simulation that might not hold, but for gaming what you said is pretty much false.

yesterday
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NVIDIA GTX 970 Specifications Corrected, Memory Pools Explained

Kjella Re:Consumers? No just whiny fanboys (113 comments)

Hey, I'm still happy about my purchase but when I bought it I looked at the specs and thought: Hmm, they've disabled 3/16ths of the shaders, but it has the same ROPs, same cache, same RAM... if I buy two for SLI it should perform like the GTX 980 except for having 2x13 = 26 shader blocks instead of 16/32 for a single/double 980. Now I find out that's just not true, it has 0.5 GB quasi-RAM it can't access at the listed memory bandwidth, I feel I got very legitimate reason to feel cheated.

Apparently the ROP/cache isn't a big deal at it makes sense to use 7/8th = 14/16th to serve 13/16th the shaders, if only they'd listed the specs right. But gaming at 3840x2160 with SLI there's a fair chance I could run into a game now or in the future that wants to use all 4GB where it'll either act like a 3.5GB card or drop the framerate significantly underperforming compared to the GTX 980, I don't think that's just theoretical.

I'd probably still be quite cool with a 3.5GB card with 0.5GB of "last resort" memory that's still faster/lower latency than system memory. But they were in error and have admitted they were in error, I think that goes a little beyond "We said we're sorry" Paying some kind of compensation for falsely promised functionality would not be unreasonable (or swapping my GTX 970s with a 8-channel memory version, but I guess that's overkill). I'd be very surprised if there isn't a class action lawsuit very soon.

yesterday
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Omand Warns of "Ethically Worse" Spying If Unbreakable Encryption Is Allowed

Kjella Re:They better be damn sure we're not home... (386 comments)

Heads are also heavily protected. Have you never seen the gear SWAT teams, riot police, soldiers, etc. wear? You really think they walk around with their head exposed?

Since those guys are likely to be in full heavy body armor as well and humans need to see and breathe the face is still the weak spot, unless you got a high powered rifle or something. Not that you're going to win against a whole SWAT team anyway, but one lone nutcase who has you backed into a corner... I'd aim for the face.

2 days ago
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SpaceX, US Air Force Settle Spy Sat Dispute

Kjella Re:Not a problem (80 comments)

SpaceX will sell the Air Farce the rockets. The AF launches their gear into orbit. SpaceX has nothing to do with it more than to get paid for the hardware and some support personnel who will have to have security clearances.

These aren't just slightly confidential, state of the art spy satellites is top secret business. They'll be worrying that a SpaceX employee can plant something to steal technology, reveal capabilities, damage or compromise the satellite once the payload is installed. I'm guessing you need just a microscopic amount of C4 if it can hook into the antenna and wait for a self-destruct signal so that when you need them the most they go boom and the screens go dark.

2 days ago
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DirectX 12 Lies Dormant Within Microsoft's Recent Windows 10 Update

Kjella Re:DirectX is obsolete (133 comments)

The developer has to support one or both. Most users don't care as long as everything works.

And the developer generally means game engine developer, not game developer. If you want to write your own engine that's a pretty big job by itself.

2 days ago
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UHD Spec Stomps on Current Blu-ray Spec, But Will Consumers Notice?

Kjella Re:I won't notice (331 comments)

Put a reminder in your calendar to reply to this post in 10 years. If I was wrong I'll send you a beer.

Just a technical nitpick, old articles eventually get archived - I'm assuming to prevent spambots making replies and modding them up to get into Google results since there's no real moderators around anymore - so he won't be able to.

2 days ago
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Why We Still Can't Really Put Anything In the Public Domain

Kjella Re:What's unclear? (98 comments)

Depends on the nature of the relationship between the one who released it and the owner. Most likely it would go under "agency by estoppel" which means that the principal is bound by the actions of their agent as long as a reasonable person would believe it is within the agent's authority. There would be no reason for anyone to believe that the original release was unauthorized, so nobody is liable for copyright infringement even though Nullsoft lacked actual authority. Whether you can stretch this into using it as if it were properly licensed in perpetuity despite notices to the contrary is more questionable, besides not all jurisdictions may have the same estoppel laws as the US. But it wouldn't be an unreasonable claim that you found a code snippet apparently under the GPL and used it in good faith that it was authorized by Nullsoft.

This would not apply if some random employee decided to post the source code though since it's clearly outside his scope of authority, nor would it apply if hackers released the code with a fraudulent license since there's no principal-agent relationship, so in practice you might still become liable through no fault of your own. Making a process to declare something public domain won't change that, since it would be just as false as licensing it under the GPL. Or like buying stolen property, even though you had no reason to believe it was stolen it won't matter if the owner shows up and proves it's his. But not if you went to his store and bought it by a clerk who didn't have the authority to make that kind of sale.

2 days ago
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Best 1990s Sci-fi show?

Kjella Re:X-Files vs. Bab-5 - ouch! (464 comments)

ST:TNG worked better specifically because it was not serialized for the most part, and individual episodes were not building toward some specific thing that had to be modified and rewritten and adjusted every time the network messed with the show or cancelled it. It was also generally possible to enjoy episodes after having missed several, as for the most part there wasn't a lot of long-term backstory to need to be acquainted with just to follow the plot.

Yeah, Babylon 5 just didn't give a shit about casual viewers - there was only a very few episodes that had a recap of past event. The first time I was tipped about the series I saw an episode in the middle of the series and was just wondering who, what, why since there was absolutely no way to get into the series. It really wouldn't have hurt them to have a 30 second "Previously on Babylon 5" to give you the essentials.

2 days ago
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Doomsday Clock Moved Two Minutes Forward, To 23:57

Kjella Re:you can't boil this down to one variable (215 comments)

Why? There's a hundred ways I could die in the next year, but there's no problem aggregating it so I don't see why the clock can't represent total risk. Besides, it's probably going to cascade anyway. If Russia pulls the trigger in Eastern Europe then NATO will get involved, China probably don't want NATO forces on their borders and at least somewhat back Russia and might decide the time is right to take back Taiwan and those Japanese islands and it all goes down hill from there. IS has openly stated their goal is to wage war on everyone until it's one caliphate. If shit hits the fan in the Middle East you know the US will back Israel which will drag NATO into it and the oil would bring everyone else. Same with North Korea, it could easily become a proxy war between China and the US that turns into a true war. I'm not exactly sure how an India-Pakistan war would escalate but an all-out war there already has 1.5 billion people involved. And that's just where it sparks, if you could guess that the rise of Hitler would lead to the attack on Pearl Harbor your crystal ball is good.

Remember, the world is a lot more connected than it used to be, with floods in Thailand the price of hard drives worldwide doubled. No matter where war breaks out it's going to have a lot of impact on US companies and US markets and there will be a lot more incentive to protect US economic interests around the globe than there used to be in the 1940s. Even when it's not cold war power plays it's going to be a lot harder to dismiss as not our problem.

3 days ago
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NVIDIA Responds To GTX 970 Memory Bug

Kjella Re:It also doesn't really matter (145 comments)

Whether the GTX 970 has 3.5 or 4 GB effective it's still more than a standard GTX 780 Ti with 3 GB, so I'm guessing you have to run some rather extreme resolutions and AA modes to see a practical difference. In fact the latter will generally beat a 970 whether single vs single or SLI vs SLI at UHD (3840x2160) resolutions.

What I do know is that my 2x970 totally trashes a single GTX 980 at a 20% price premium as they do have 2x13/16 = 26/16 the shaders, both cards shut down the fans at idle so it's extremely quiet and even at full tilt both cards together pull just 2x145W = 290W. I'm kinda surprised nobody's done a single card version yet since it's still under the 300W ATX limit.

It runs games at 3840x2160 on a Samsung UD590 beautifully, even though it's a 1ms TN panel it's not for twitch gaming as it's 60 Hz on DisplayPort with no fancy sync options and 25ms input lag but it looks extremely good. And at monitor distances you can definitively see the upgrade over 1080p while the TV benefits are more dubious. There are better setups, but for being such a high-end system the price/performance was extremely good.

3 days ago
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In Addition To Project Spartan, Windows 10 Will Include Internet Explorer

Kjella Re:Internet Explorer (99 comments)

Having been dredged into that market by no choice of my own, I can tell you this.: Picking a solution that works well in every browser is damn hard, even if you try. IE6 was the worst, but it did't look right in Safari either. I'm pretty sure Firefox and Opera was correct, but it doesn't really matter to th end user. You use an obscure client, it's your problem. It's only quite recently it's become their problem.

3 days ago
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UHD Spec Stomps on Current Blu-ray Spec, But Will Consumers Notice?

Kjella Re:Nope (331 comments)

I have a 28" UHD monitor - the U28D590D if you want to be specific - and yes, you can tell the difference. That said, it was underwhelming to my eyes, I don't have the eyes to take full advantage of 4K. I think I could pick the 4K image in an A/B test, but not the 8K image. We're getting closer though, but I'm not sure it's meaningfully relevant. That is, would it matter if you got infinite resolution, infinite fps, infinite FPS? Or would it just be another failed atttempt.

3 days ago
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Bomb Threats Via Twitter Partly Shut Down Atlanta's Hartsfield Airport

Kjella Re:Other than the obligatory security theatre... (109 comments)

If there's any indication that the craft is no longer under pilot control, then yes. Sorry if they might have reacted previously before 9/11, but at this point you'd better scramble and overpower the hijackers or be collateral. The dead people aren't exactly likely to give any testimony to the contrary, so the government's story that it was necessary will largely go unopposed. Except a few family members who "weren't there" and can't make a rational decision, of course.

3 days ago
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UHD Spec Stomps on Current Blu-ray Spec, But Will Consumers Notice?

Kjella Re:Uh...no (331 comments)

Just because Intel releases a 100 MHz faster CPU you don't have to buy it, you know. And TVs get incremental upgrades, but honestly how many generations of mainstream media has there been? VHS (1973), DVD (1995), BluRay (2006) and this will be the fourth. Does it really kill you that something better comes along once a decade? Sure, marketers will always tell you that you need something new, that's not just in their job description that is their job description. I like the state of the art moving forward, what's so great about being a luddite? Yes, a lot of modern media suck but when you look at the parts of old media that didn't survive the test of time there was a lot of crap in the past too.

3 days ago
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UHD Spec Stomps on Current Blu-ray Spec, But Will Consumers Notice?

Kjella There's more to it than that (331 comments)

The new spec also brings HFR (up to 60 fps, probably), wider colors (Rec. 2020), more accurate colors (10-bit seems to go mainstream) as well as double resolution. But hey yes, a BluRay looks pretty sweet already. In any case, it doesn't hurt unlike 3D that some - me included - just doesn't like. I just checked my local version of pricewatch and of 646 TV models for sale 102 now feature UHD. They even sell 40" UHD TVs for $500 now, which makes no sense at all and all this with Netflix being just about the only source of non-upscale UHD content. So I think it's beyond a doubt that mainstream TVs will go there eventually.

Besides, the trend is only bigger TVs. When I grew up we had a 20-something inch TV, now I have a 60" TV. When prices go down, sizes go up. It won't be quick and it's not urgent at all, but just like FullHD settled in - there were a lot of naysayers then too - UHD will too. It's not like SACD and DVD Audio where people listen on the go and want playlists, watching movies/series is still primarily a living room couch activity where you sit down to watch one for 40 mins - 3 hours.

3 days ago
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Linus Fixes Kernel Regression Breaking Witcher 2

Kjella Re:Linux (123 comments)

It's worth mentioning, he also wouldn't flame someone for breaking the kernel like this. The time he did flame someone for a similar bug, it was because the developer not only broke userland, but also began to argue that he was correct to do so. That is when he got flamed.

This. Linus is quite clear that breaking userspace is a bug and they've already added a patch that would restore the functionality, while still blocking possible exploits - which was why they broke it in the first place otherwise they'd revert. It's tough love though, if you make a bad API - and we know that happens - you're stuck with it practically forever.

3 days ago
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Smartphones, Tablets and EBay Send SkyMall To Chapter 11

Kjella Re:Why would anyone buy something from those catal (65 comments)

Why is there airport shopping, despite usually being more expensive than anywhere else except for tax-free? Because you have a trapped audience and once you got them wandering their store and find something they like many people will buy it right there. They won't make a note of it that they should check into buying one of those later. The time in the airport and the airplane seat is already a "sunk cost", spending my time shopping when I'm back on the ground is not. It's not cost efficient, but many have more money than time.

I used to travel a bit on an air plane due to work, the in-flight magazine was usually read cover-to-cover because well, there wasn't much else to do after finishing the newspaper. I don't think I'd read a mail order catalog like this seems to be though, but the "infomercial" travel stories, fashion/art items and such I think hit their target pretty well. I mean, it's not every day I read three pages about what's to see in Stockholm/Düsseldorf/Valencia but I know I have done so on the plane. And I'm not the one for buying overpriced crap, but it got me looking and a few times tempted because it was actually stylish.

These days, I'm on the phone. Went flying twice on Friday for a one-day meeting, didn't even consider looking in the seat pocket. Bring your own entertainment and for longer flights the in-flight entertainment system is actually getting pretty good. At least good enough to fill the dead time, which is exactly what companies like Skymall depended on. Which is why I'd love an autonomous car and don't understand the naysayers, spent 2+ hours today watching traffic. I honestly got better things to do, but since I'm driving I don't have a choice.

3 days ago
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NVIDIA Launches New Midrange Maxwell-Based GeForce GTX 960 Graphics Card

Kjella Not all that impressive (114 comments)

From the reviews I've read it's basically it's cool, quiet, has all the latest features but in the end has almost the same performance as the 760. Where the 970 went really aggressive on pricing the 960 looks to be their "money maker" that TechPowerUp called "a cheap-to-make GPU they paired with an extremely cost-efficient PCB design that has loads of margins in it for future price wars with AMD".

Not that I think AMD is in any mood for price wars after their Q4 financials, they posted a $330 million loss, a lot of one-time charges but also a $58 million inventory write-down on their APUs. Last quarter revenue was down 13% and guidance for Q1 2015 is another 15%, they really could use some killer graphics card very, very soon. Or to put it even more harshly, their last quarter wiped out 2/3rds of their stockholder value and one more quarter like would put them in bankruptcy court.

5 days ago

Submissions

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Microsoft bans Firefox on Windows ARM

Kjella Kjella writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Kjella (173770) writes "In another case of "if you can't beat them, exclude them" Microsoft has decided to not allow third party browsers on Windows ARM. The reasons cited by Microsoft's Deputy General Counsel David Heiner are: "
  • ARM processors, which power virtually all iOS, Android, and Windows Phone smartphones and tablets today, are different from the x86 chips that power PCs. The chips have new requirements for security and power management, and Microsoft is the only one who can meet those needs.
  • Windows RT — the version of Windows 8 geared for ARM devices — "isn't Windows anymore."
"

Link to Original Source
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Chrome beats IE for first time ever

Kjella Kjella writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Kjella (173770) writes "Sunday 18th of March should go down in browser history. For the first in many years IE is no longer then #1 web browser, with Chrome narrowly beating IE with 32.71% to 32.50% while Firefox on third with 24.81%. As the figures are substantially higher for Chrome and lower for IE on weekends it's only for a day but it's another big milestone. While IE still is in a clear lead in North America and Oceania, it is tied with Firefox in Europe while Chrome now leads in Asia and South America and Firefox leads in Africa."
Link to Original Source
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French "three strikes" back thanks to Sark

Kjella Kjella writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Kjella (173770) writes "A little over a week ago, slashdot reported that the EU would forbid disconnecting users from the Internet. But even after having passed with an 88% approval in the European Parliament and passing through the European Commission, it was all undone as the European Council, led by French President Sarkozy removed the amendment before passing the Telecom package. This means that there's now nothing stopping France's controversial "three strikes" law from going into effect. What hope is there for a "parliament" where there is near unison agreement, yet can be completely disregarded so easily?"
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Oil fall nets lame duck with free crossover wine

Kjella Kjella writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Kjella (173770) writes "The good people over at CodeWeavers set up a challenge for King George to really make the most of his last days in office. The Lame Duck Presidential Challenges are to reduce the price of gas, reduce the price of food, create more jobs, rejuvenate the housing market and bring Osama bin Laden to justice. Noone realized just how he was going to do that as most of the goals were rather ambitious, but along with the doom and gloom of recession fears one of the criteria has been met. The price of gas is now back to $2.79 per gallon in the Twin Cities so break out your SUVs and party like it's 2006. For those of you instead looking to save every buck, today Crossover is giving away all their products for free, or at least gratis for the FSF fans out there. Already they're down to a light web page due to Digg, surely we can do better than that."

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