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Comments

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Heinz Zemanek Passes At 94

Knuckles Re:Typical German speaker (52 comments)

WTF are you rambling about?

Mai-lüf-terl. Exactly three syllables...

Maybe he referred to the official "Binär dezimaler Volltransistor-Rechenautomat" which does sound as if Hitler had moved to a career in CS

3 days ago
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Heinz Zemanek Passes At 94

Knuckles Re:Father of Computer Puns? (52 comments)

Interesting, thanks. I would guess that it's a nerd thing and probably there were earlier cases, but now I am intrigued.

3 days ago
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Heinz Zemanek Passes At 94

Knuckles Re:Someone tell him to slow down! (52 comments)

Yes they do, but the headline was rewritten by the /. editor, it was not mine. I do think he improved on mine though.

3 days ago
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Heinz Zemanek Passes At 94

Knuckles Re:Best Computer name ever (52 comments)

Now I envy your nick. And yeah, so Austrian it makes me a little homesick.

3 days ago
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Heinz Zemanek Passes At 94

Knuckles Re:"Passed" (52 comments)

After gettin the flack for the may/May typo already, the headline was edited by the editor and was not my fault. Mine had sucked as well though

3 days ago
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Heinz Zemanek Passes At 94

Knuckles Re:It's "May breeze," not "may breeze" (52 comments)

Not a German but maybe an Austrian ;) Sorry for the typo, you may have noticed that I tried to take quite some care with TFA, it slipped through.

3 days ago
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By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

Knuckles Re: AI is always "right around the corner". (564 comments)

I don't know how to determine this, quantitatively or otherwise. It's an interesting question once machine translation gets better, but for now I consider it obvious that something like Google translation does not know what it's doing. Having access to and having translated a large existing courpus of text is obviously not enough, as Google certainly has analyzed more text than a human translator does, and still is wrong whenever there is the slightest possibility of ambiguity (i.e., all the time, in practice).

Anyway, TFA was not about machine translation, but AI. A human translator who translates a text knows that he is translating a text. I am not worried that a computer will, by 2045.

about two weeks ago
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By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

Knuckles Re: AI is always "right around the corner". (564 comments)

Seriously? It looks up keywords and statistics regarding what other people clicked who looked at similar content.

about two weeks ago
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By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

Knuckles Re: AI is always "right around the corner". (564 comments)

The machine has no fucking clue about what it is translating.

Neither do you, it's just an illusion caused by a simple computer called the brain. Everything you think you know about yourself is an illusion. You do not make decisions, you do not have free will, your are nothing special. You are a biochemical computer that is 100% deterministic. Sorry to burst your bubble, but it's true.

This is wholly beside the point. Even if I am deterministic, any human translator understands the text he is translating to a quite large degree, or else nobody will bother with him. The best translation machines understand exactly 0%

about two weeks ago
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By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

Knuckles Re: AI is always "right around the corner". (564 comments)

Welcome to the http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki...

Q: if there was a human dumb savant who could translate instantly between multiple languages, though without understanding how he did it (think Rainman), would you say he was not intelligent? Why? What is intelligence? We are inconsistent - we praise humans as intelligent when they can perform some complex algorithm well (chess), and yet as soon as a computer beats a human, or all humans, we denigrate the task as "not intelligence". Often the reason is "just an algorithm", but as a neuroscientist knows, that is a poor excuse - it's algorithms all the way down.

Yeah, we have no idea what constitutes intelligence either. Got any other old news?

Anyway, my post was not about "without understanding how he did it" but knowing what the translator is doing, how a sense of self relates to this, the history of the text in question and its context, the context oft he content itself (without which is appears impossible to translate even remotely correctly, as Google Translators mindless efforts seem to be showing), the context of the media, and many other aspects or translation process and translation material.

about two weeks ago
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By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

Knuckles Re: AI is always "right around the corner". (564 comments)

The machine has no fucking clue about what it is translating. Not the media, not the content, not even what to and from which languages it is translating (other than a variable somewhere, which is not "knowing". None whatsoever. Until it does, it has nothing to do with AI in the sense of TAFA. (The alarmist fucking article)

about two weeks ago
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The Singularity Is Sci-Fi's Faith-Based Initiative

Knuckles Re:Ai is inevitable (339 comments)

I'm not sure what you're arguing. I didn't say it's impossible. I agree with "You need to understand
something before you can be sure it is
impossible to do", but just as much you need to understand something before you can say it's inevitable that it will be built, and that was the point I made.

about 2 months ago
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The Singularity Is Sci-Fi's Faith-Based Initiative

Knuckles Re:Ai is inevitable (339 comments)

No, we can't "build" one at this time. We fuck and then it builds itself.

about 2 months ago
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The Singularity Is Sci-Fi's Faith-Based Initiative

Knuckles Re:Ai is inevitable (339 comments)

They produce them, they are not building them. It's obvious that brains can exist, but we have no clue how despite our advances so far. And if we figure out how it could be some kind of quantum stuff that makes it just as impossible for us, for any foreseeable time, as building galaxies is - which also were produced.

about 2 months ago
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The Singularity Is Sci-Fi's Faith-Based Initiative

Knuckles Re:Ai is inevitable (339 comments)

OK, but same could be true for brains, no?

about 2 months ago
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The Singularity Is Sci-Fi's Faith-Based Initiative

Knuckles Re:Ai is inevitable (339 comments)

True, but not very practical. Nothing is physics prevents us from building our own galaxy, either. Does that mean it's inevitable?

about 2 months ago
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Price of Amazon Prime May Jump To $119 a Year

Knuckles Re:Prime is 29 Euros in Germany (298 comments)

In germany prime does not include streaming instant video. For that amazon has a separate service called lovefilm.de which does netflix style DVD delivery and instant streaming.

I see, thanks

about 6 months ago

Submissions

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Rest in Peace, Heinz Zemanek

Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  4 days ago

Knuckles (8964) writes "Austrian computer pioneer Heinz Zemanek, the first person to build a fully transistorized computer on the European mainland, died in Vienna, aged 94 (link in German). Officially named Binär dezimaler Volltransistor-Rechenautomat (binary-decimal fully transistorized computing automaton), but known as "Mailüfterl", the computer was built in 1955 and in 1958 calculated 5073548261 to be a prime number in 66 minutes. Its power was comparable to a small tube computer of the time, and it measured 4 by 2.5 by 0.5 meters. "Mailüfterl" means "may breeze" in Viennese German and was a play on US computers of the time, like MIT's Whirlwind. 'Even if it cannot match the rapid calculation speed of American models called "Whirlwind" or "Typhoon", it will be enough for a "Wiener Mailüfterl"' (Viennese may breeze), said Zemanek. Mailüfterl contained 3,000 transistors, 5,000 diodes, 1,000 assembly platelets, 100,000 solder joints, 15,000 resistors, 5,000 capacitors and 20,000 meters switching wire. It was built as an underground project at and without financial support from the technical university of Vienna, were Zemanek was an assistant professor at the time. In 1961, Zemanek and his team moved to IBM, who built them their own lab in Vienna. In 1976, Zemanek became an IBM Fellow and stayed at IBM until his retirement in 1985. He was crucial in the creation of the formal definition of the programming language PL/I. The definition language used was VDL (Vienna Definition Language), a direct predecessor of VDM Specification Language (VDM-SL). He remained a professor in Vienna and held regular lectures until 2006."
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Apple drops some features from CUPS 1.6 not needed by OS X

Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Knuckles writes "Most Slashdot readers will be aware that in 2007, CUPS (the Common Unix Printing System) became an Apple project when Apple hired chief developer Michael Sweet and purchased the CUPS source code. In 2002, Apple had adopted CUPS as the print system for OS X, starting with 10.2. As of the upcoming CUPS 1.6, Apple seems to have decided that they have less use for the "Common" in CUPS, as noted in a blog post by Tim Waugh, the print subsystem maintainer in Fedora:

The main part that is being dropped completely is CUPS Browsing. This is currently the primary mechanism for CUPS-to-CUPS printer queue discovery on Linux. It works by having each CUPS server periodically broadcast UDP packets on port 631 announcing its available queues, and listening for broadcasts from other CUPS servers. This discovery method is being dropped because DNS-SD is preferred upstream.

CUPS on Linux can use Avahi instead, but this change means that automatic CUPS queue discovery with CUPS 1.6 will require Avahi running on both the server and the client. In addition, CUPS 1.6 will drop several file type filters. These will be moved to a new package, so it should not be a big deal."
Link to Original Source

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Miguel de Icaza on Mono, Moonlight, and Gnome

Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Knuckles writes "Austrian newspaper Der Standard continues its recent series of in-depth interviews with free software developers. This time they sat down with Novell's Vice President of Developer Platform, Miguel de Icaza of Gnome and Mono fame. The interview was conducted at GUADEC (GNOME Users' And Developers' European Conference).

Miguel talks mainly about Mono 2.0 and .Net 3.5 compatibility, enhancing the collaboration with Microsoft over Silverlight ("Moonlight" in Mono), and the larger political situation of Mono and Moonlight. When the interviewer asks whether Moonlight is only validating Silverlight on the web, Miguel gives a quite detailed answer that includes a possibly well-deserved swipe at Mozilla.

And even the Mozilla guys — the keynote we had here was done on a mac, every single Mozilla developer uses a Mac. And it's funny, they constantly attack Silverlight, they constantly attack Flash and then all of them use proprietary operating systems, they don't seem to have a problem doing it. And then they had the Guiness record thing for Firefox 3 and you went to the website and it had a flash map to show where people are downloading — so there definitely is a double standard here. And that's after all their claiming that you can do everything in AJAX — so they definitely don't "walk the walk".

Another topic is Miguel's suggestion to "refresh the look and feel of the entire desktop" using Moonlight.

To be realistic I don't think we can do absolutely everything that would take years. So if I would have my choice today I would probably rewrite the gnome panel completely with Moonlight. I wouldn't go as far as doing the file manager although I think it would be great to do a new file manager or improve Nautilus but it would be a lot of work.

It should be noted that Miguel has not been responsible for Gnome development for a long time, so don't take this as "plans for Gnome"."

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Acer: Vista disappointed 'entire industry'

Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Knuckles writes "Financial Times Germany quotes (German) Acer president Gianfranco Lanci as saying, 'the entire industry is disappointed by Windows Vista.' Here is an English report about the FTD article by Tech.co.uk. Lanci said that despite the year-long wait that Microsoft imposed on the industry, Vista was not ready on launch. Lanci: 'Stability is certainly a problem.'"
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Wii puts Japanese TV stations under pressure

Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  about 7 years ago

Knuckles writes "The Times reports that "Japanese desert prime-time TV to play on their Nintendo Wii". Recent figures from Japan's audience-tracking firms show that "last week was the first in nearly two decades where no single show on any commercial station attracted more than a 9 per cent audience share. "According to one senior executive of the country's largest commercial television channel, Fuji TV, families who used to tune in to its colourful diet of soap operas, panel games and comedy variety shows may, instead, be drifting away and choosing to spend the same, economically-critical "golden hour" time playing on their Wii."

Personally, I'd like new games, but I can bridge the gap with the virtual console. If only it worked with PAL games over component cables."
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Xbox 360 Failure Rate Reaches 33%?

Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  about 7 years ago

Knuckles writes "DailyTech reports that with a failure rate around 33%, "the Xbox 360 is the least reliable gaming console in recent history", with launch consoles even worse. The numbers were found by polling EB Games and Gamestop employees, who answered under strict anonymity, and verifying the results with other retailers, such as Best Buy. DailyTech does however not disclose the number of employees they asked. EB Games Canada allegedly had to change their warranty policies to cope."
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Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Knuckles writes "The Samsung website has a press release announcing a broad patent deal between Samsung and Microsoft. It includes clauses that are similar to Novell's deal, giving Samsung rights to alleged Microsoft patents in Linux.

Through the agreement, Samsung will obtain access to Microsoft patents that may be practiced in a range of Samsung's existing and future product lines, such as computer products, set-top-boxes, digital media players, camcorders, televisions, printers, and home appliances. In these product lines, Samsung and its distributors and customers may utilize Microsoft's patents in Samsung's products with proprietary software and Samsung will also obtain coverage from Microsoft for its customers' use of certain Linux-based products.
Unfortunately it is not clear if they try to include just products that are based on "Linux" the kernel, or also products that are based on the OS that is usually, and erroneously, called by that name."
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Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Knuckles writes "Austrian newspaper Der Standard has released another interview from Novells Brainshare conference, this time with Novell CTO/Open Source Nat Friedman. (Slashdot carried an interview with Miguel de Icaza recently). Friedman talks about a lot of things: what's up with the Evolution email client, Service Pack 1 for SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop, proprietary media support, the Novell/MS deal (saying that he does not think that Novell patches will be rejected because of the deal), Beagle improvements, and why Hula failed at Novell (and its future)."
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Knuckles Knuckles writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Knuckles writes "On the Wii website the President of Nintendo, Satoru Iwata, conducts quite extensive interviews with the developers of Wii, such as the General Manager of Research and Development. The interview comes in two volumes with three parts each. Iwata actually asks many interesting questions, such as
In general, no engineer hates higher performance. As an engineer, didn't you experience any inner conflict when it was decided that we would not necessarily take Wii in the direction of sheer horsepower alone?
The interview is the start of a series according to the Wii website."

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