Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Sale of IBM's Chip-Making Business To GlobalFoundries To Get US Security Review

Tenebrousedge Re:Wrong criterion (90 comments)

One supplier does not competition make. Also, Intel isn't necessarily interested in making the chips that the Gov't wants, or this article would probably not exist.

yesterday
top

Sale of IBM's Chip-Making Business To GlobalFoundries To Get US Security Review

Tenebrousedge Wrong criterion (90 comments)

No, the government's job is infrastructure, and other things that can be described as natural monopolies. If the start-up costs for a business are in the tens- to hundreds-of-billions, there isn't going to be much in the way of competition no matter what the industry is. If it's actually vital that said industry exists, it makes sense to nationalize it.

However, if competition is possible, it should be encouraged. There's no reason to nationalize SecureWidgetCo if a dozen people could take their place tomorrow, even if they only sell to the government.

It's clear that if the US Government wants to be sure of its chip supply, it needs to be in business for itself. The ultimate reason is not however that it's inherently inefficient for the government to enter into contracts with private companies, but that large scale microchip fabrication is so expensive that no (private, US) company is willing to do it.

P.S. With respect, if your response to this is that natural monopolies do not exist, please save yourself the trouble of responding.

yesterday
top

Michigan Latest State To Ban Direct Tesla Sales

Tenebrousedge Wrong ism (244 comments)

Socialized does not mean paid with by tax money. Socialized means that the workers or public collectively own the means of production.

You're talking about fascism, which Mussolini was fond of describing as "the union of the Corporation with the State."

yesterday
top

Debian's Systemd Adoption Inspires Threat of Fork

Tenebrousedge Re:UNIX Philosophy (547 comments)

It's a matter of perspective. Being able to accurately track processes (via cgroups) is systemd's raison d'etre, and a natural part of this is to be able to start and stop services. In order to do that well, you're going to need to have some sort of idea about service dependencies and system resources. As long as you're going to do all the hard parts of init anyway, you may as well be an init system. Even so, it's not entirely necessary that systemd run as PID1, but it seems to have been coded that way. However, it's not the only service manager that does this: runit, daemontools, and the service managers for OSX and Solaris also handle init.

The other thing that is enabled by accurate process management is tracking user sessions. It's not strictly part of the mission statement, but it's not too much of a stretch, and no other project (besides the moribund ConsoleKit) is providing it. That would be why the major Desktop Environments are dependent on systemd, not because they want to, but because there's no alternative. So, it's not going to be enough to mandate that Debian be init-neutral, someone needs to sit down and either fix ConsoleKit (which was abandoned for a reason), or write something equivalent. I believe Canonical has made some steps forward there.

If you're going to argue against systemd, you should consider learning something about it. There is far more heat than light on the side of the detractors, and it does not help their cause.

2 days ago
top

Help ESR Stamp Out CVS and SVN In Our Lifetime

Tenebrousedge Re:Counterpoint (242 comments)

There's submodules and subtrees, neither works all that well. SVN can pull down part of a repo, which is (IMO) slightly more sane behavior.

3 days ago
top

Help ESR Stamp Out CVS and SVN In Our Lifetime

Tenebrousedge Counterpoint (242 comments)

Git's subtree / subproject management is extremely painful. The information manager from hell, indeed. I dislike SVN/CVS extremely, but they make much easier to do sub-repositories. For example, Arch's ABS is entirely under SVN, which works well enough for them, but using git the same way sounds like torture.

3 days ago
top

Debian's Systemd Adoption Inspires Threat of Fork

Tenebrousedge A completely empty threat (547 comments)

Threatening a fork is like threatening legal action: if you think you're to that point, you need to just do it, and inform the relevant parties afterwards. Anyone can threaten to take action.

3 days ago
top

Debian's Systemd Adoption Inspires Threat of Fork

Tenebrousedge Re:UNIX Philosophy (547 comments)

However, do these programs follow the do-one-thing-and-do-it-well principle: web servers like Apache, database servers like PostgreSQL, the X Window system, the GIMP, OpenOffice? Is an init system more like one of these or more like sed and awk? That's not a rhetorical question. I'm a web programmer who loves Linux, but the kernal and start-up are still black magic to me.

Apache is monolithic in the same way that systemd is. It does not do "one thing". Nginx exists because Apache does way too much. X.org is also absurdly complicated, but at least they stripped out the print server. Wayland is the attempt to make it more pared-down. An init system is either complicated or bad at what it does, or both. I would perhaps debate about including Postgres as a piece of monolithic software, perhaps in comparison to simple data stores, but it doesn't stray too far outside of the definition of "relational database".

Maybe an init system can be simple. I don't understand why even shell scripts are needed. Seems like they should be the exception, not the rule. Seems like configuration should be a single file that lists the programs to start from top to bottom. If you wanted add some parallel start-ups, it seems like you could just make the config file format a little fancier, maybe with some braces or indentation to express dependency.

Your system is not well thought out and would not handle dependencies / parallel startup very well. However, generally speaking shell scripts should definitely be the exception: executable configuration files are a bad design. If you must use arbitrary scripts, then you should abstract the common elements and reduce the part that must be expressed as executable code to the bare minimum. Have sane defaults, and an easily-reviewed common subset of functionality, make the simple things easy, and stay out of the way of anyone who really really needs a programming language and shell in order to start a program.

Maybe instead of systemd we could come up with a start-up standard, sort of like the POSIX standard.

The important part of systemd is actually managing processes and services, startup is where most of that happens, but it's not the driving force of systemd. The reason why systemd exists, and the reason why it isn't portable, is because of cgroups, which are a feature specific to the Linux kernel allowing for real process management. In non-systemd Linux, daemons must carefully communicate through special files what they are doing, or the OS is not able to determine anything about the service. There is a complicated process which every process that wants to daemonize must follow, and the only thing that makes this remotely sane is longevity. Solaris and OSX have both separately replaced SysV init.

I have read that FreeBSD has taken the strategy of using essentially a library of common things that init scripts might want to do, but for the general case having this library be written in an interpreted language gains little.

3 days ago
top

If You're Connected, Apple Collects Your Data

Tenebrousedge We have cookies (312 comments)

...I pretty much loathe the command-line. Text UI be damned! To the depths of Mount Doom!

If you only knew the power of the dark side!

Bash is not the most fun programming language, but CLIs (as distinct from TUIs) are the easiest way to interact with a computer system programmatically. There is such thing as graphical programming, but...ew. On the one hand, you've been able to install and use Linux for about a decade now without ever seeing a command line. On the other, the Internet would not exist if it weren't for CLIs.

I think we're gonna need to confiscate your geek card.

3 days ago
top

No More Lee-Enfield: Canada's Rangers To Get a Tech Upgrade

Tenebrousedge Can I have some of what you're smoking? (325 comments)

A land-grab in the ocean? The Battle of Ellesmere Island?

I think there's about as much chance of having a small arms conflict in the Arctic as there is of Putin invading Greenland riding a polar bear. What exactly do you envision? Canadian troops invading Novaya Zemlya? The Arctic is unpopulated in a way that is difficult to describe. There is no one to shoot, and even getting there is a huge logistical problem. I'm pretty sure you've never been to the Arctic, but for the sake of argument, is there any basis to these ideas of yours?

4 days ago
top

JavaScript and the Netflix User Interface

Tenebrousedge Re:Google has a love/hate relationship with JS (194 comments)

I was wondering about that, but I didn't manage to find any information. Do you have a link handy? And maybe information about the differences between Google's stuff and ARChon?

When I said that it hadn't caught on, I meant that other browser vendors were not interested in implementing NaCl.

4 days ago
top

JavaScript and the Netflix User Interface

Tenebrousedge Google has a love/hate relationship with JS (194 comments)

Isn't that more or less the idea behind NaCl/Native Client? It doesn't seem to have caught on. For that matter, there was also ActiveX, and the best that you could say about it is that it had a flawed implementation.

Chrome also just added a runtime for Android apps, which seems to handle at least some simple apps at native speed on my chromebook. I suppose that's a java runtime of some sort?

I know that there are many wonderful things done daily in JS, but I really would prefer another scripting language.

5 days ago
top

Lead Mir Developer: 'Mir More Relevant Than Wayland In Two Years'

Tenebrousedge Wayland exists because X is bad at what it does (225 comments)

Have you seen the videos about why X is fundamentally broken? Did you read the fine article? There are a lot of horrible flaws in X that cannot be fixed short of a rewrite.

I get the impression that you haven't done any research into this issue, and are dismissing it based on a stereotype. Familiarity breeds contempt, and I am sure that to some degree the trend you identify exists. However, devs don't usually go that far out of their way to make work for themselves just on a whim, and I do expect them to actually be able to identify flaws in their software. Also, you should not assume that just because something is 20 or 30 years old, that it does not have major flaws. Even ignoring Shellshock, there's a lot of justification for replacing X with something else. If you believe otherwise, maybe you can pop over to the Wayland dev channel and explain why they're all wrong and that they don't need to be spending time on it.

about a week ago
top

Debian Talks About Systemd Once Again

Tenebrousedge Cgroups (519 comments)

The reason why systemd exists, and the reason why it isn't portable, are the same reason: it depends on a feature specific to the Linux kernel.

It's not up to the systemd developers to write kernel features for other OSes. If there's an "anti-standard" it's the kernel, not systemd. If the rest of the Unix world wants to implement something similar then I am sure it could be made part of a standard eventually. Until then, you've wasted space typing.

about a week ago
top

Wind Power Is Cheaper Than Coal, Leaked Report Shows

Tenebrousedge Runaway Greenhouse (610 comments)

Please don't talk about runaway greenhouse effects here on Earth. It really isn't possible.

Quick summary: for a runaway greenhouse effect, you need a big surface reservoir of some greenhouse gas (on Earth, water vapor). Theoretically, you increase the temperature a little, this vaporizes more of the gas, trapping more heat, which vaporizes more gas, and so on until the planet no longer has a radiative balance. Then things get a bit warm.

On Earth, the tropopause generally keeps water vapor near the surface; if water vapor rises to that point, it usually freezes and precipitates. This prevents it from building up in the upper atmosphere. One of the effects of CO2 on Earth is to cool the stratosphere, so ironically adding more of it could be moving us further away from a runaway greenhouse effect.

There is a vague possibility that we might make some lasting change to the climate, but probably not. We're still a few orders of magnitude away from the most drastic outgassings that the Earth has experienced. We're drastically compressing the timeframe of those events, but we will exhaust all fossil fuels long before we match the CO2 emissions of the largest LIPs. We can and seemingly will fuck up the planet for a geologic age, but the planet has recovered from worse extinction events before. We'll have to be satisfied with 90% of terrestrial life, I am afraid that the Ultimate Species Fuckup is beyond us.

about two weeks ago
top

ChromeOS Will No Longer Support Ext2/3/4 On External Drives/SD Cards

Tenebrousedge Written on my Chromebook (344 comments)

It's a cheap internet appliance with a keyboard as opposed to a touchscreen. Is anyone using tablets?

Or did you mean anyone using ChromeOS not on a Chromebook? Probably that animal doesn't exist, Google is trying to keep a "unified experience", i.e. Apple-like control over their platform. A large concern here is security; you can put it into "Developer Mode" and do whatever you want to the system, but otherwise it's pretty locked-down. I don't really mind this; people who want to screw with Linux can, and people who just want to browse the web and not worry about what the machine is doing can also do this. Turning on developer mode is extremely non-obvious, and that's probably good too.

As a primary machine, a Chromebook can be a little limiting, less so if you are well versed in wrangling Linux. However, I understand that it is being used in education a lot; it sounds pretty much perfect. Ultra-cheap hardware, simple software, low maintenance -- what's not to like?

about two weeks ago
top

ChromeOS Will No Longer Support Ext2/3/4 On External Drives/SD Cards

Tenebrousedge Yes, chromebooks are useful (344 comments)

Probably most of them. The drivers don't exist for Windows, and installing a Linux distro is a little more complicated than you might hope for. Plus, there are some actual benefits to ChomeOS, mostly that it will back up your files for you, and that it boots in seconds (maybe a total of ten seconds from clicking reboot to having all the browser windows open again), but it's also more secure than Linux. Security is achieved at the cost of making it hard to change the system.

Also keep in mind, these things ship with a 16GB SSD. You can install a couple Linux distributions in that space, but it's pretty cramped for any sort of content: you're not going to be gaming or torrenting very much. Increasing the storage is possible, but if you're going to buy a $200 laptop and a $100 SSD, you may as well buy a real laptop.

Generally speaking, it's a nice, cheap, internet appliance, for those who want a keyboard instead of a touchscreen. It's really not that bad of a user experience. I have been leaving mine around the house for the roommates; they browse the web, listen to music, watch movies, and type their resumes. I don't know what other features you think it needs.

about two weeks ago
top

DARPA Delving Into the Black Art of Super Secure Software Obfuscation

Tenebrousedge "When I use a word," (124 comments)

No, not all security is obscurity. If your list of things that need to be kept secret includes your security implementation, and especially your algorithm, then you have flawed security. Multi-level security increases the number of things you need to have and/or know in order to compromise the system. With e.g. ROT-13 or another shift cipher, once you know that they are using that cipher, there is no other knowledge that you need in order to break it. On the other hand, if you have an arbitrary number of keys and the knowledge that your opponent is using e.g. SSL, you don't have any greater ability to compromise other users.

Security through obscurity may be an overused phrase, but it does have a specific meaning; it only really makes sense in the context of security systems. You may use words however you wish, but to me that's not glory.

about three weeks ago
top

Adobe Photoshop Is Coming To Linux, Through Chromebooks

Tenebrousedge Change the name already! (197 comments)

I don't always do graphics work, but when I do, I use the GIMP on Linux.

In my opinion, the open source community is practically perfect. Even with your once-in-25-years bug like Shellshock, I prefer having control over my systems, and access to the internals if I ever really need to. If I had unlimited power to direct the course of the open source community, and funds to match, I wouldn't change anything: just give me more of the same.

With one exception.

Can we start a petition for this? A Kickstarter? A lynch mob? The biggest embarrassment for open source isn't Shellshock, it's the name of the graphics editor. I suppose if nothing else it could lead to a profitable side business selling (Libre-) torches and pitchforks, but come on, people.

about three weeks ago

Submissions

Journals

Tenebrousedge has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?