×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Wireless PCIe To Enable Remote Graphics Cards

boyko.at.netqos Re:I must admit... (181 comments)

True, but consider this possibility:

Right now everyone's looking at the traditional model. That is, a portable CPU connected to a GPU connected to a display, and adding in a wireless form factor to it.

What if, instead, the base station contained the CPU AND the GPU connected directly together - much like a desktop system now - to do all the hard math and 3D rendering? - which then outputs a wireless PCIe signal, which is then picked up by the portable device, like a netbook, with a basic GPU, a small processor, and little to no HD space? It's only job would be, much like a thin client - would be to provide you access to the computing power in the "main" section of the house.

It would be like having a docking station for your netbook that turns it into a desktop powerhouse - only you could walk around the house with it. And, when the time comes that you want to take it outside, you still have the basic capabilities of a netbook.

That might be a product worth selling to, say, a family of four. "You can pay for four notebooks, or four netbooks and this powerful base station".

more than 4 years ago
top

Ubuntu "Memberships" Questioned

boyko.at.netqos Re:...chewie (210 comments)

If you really want to pay me back for the comment, wait until I sign up with my new login, "boykotemplatedigital", then put in a good word when I say something smart there.

Here's the thing. I'm in new media marketing. I write the company blog for CA|NetQoS, and part of it is promoting both the blog and the CA|NetQoS products... ...which are awesome... ...but from day one (October 9, 2006) I've always taken the stance that when I participate in blogs or social news sites, or forums, or whatever, when related to the business, that I disclose my affiliations so that people can use the information to determine whether or not I am biased - or more specifically - so that they know that I am when they evaluate my point.

So I signed in as "boyko.at.netqos" when I registered for Slashdot. Right there is my name, and the company I work for.

In a couple weeks, I'm going to find out whether my immigration visa is approved to go work for a company in New Zealand called Template Digital. It's a start-up which hopes to be a buy-and-sell marketplace for motion graphics (Adobe AfterEffects) professionals who want to sell both to each other (it helps to start a project with a workable template rather than designing everything from scratch) or to final consumers of motion graphics work. (We actually sort-of segment the market by charging for "exclusivity." - so that a television production company, or large corporate entity could use one of the templates exclusively as part of their branding.)

I'm kinda getting ahead of myself here...

The point is, my excellent karma and +5 comments will not follow me to my next incarnation on Slashdot, a move I have to make both for transparency's sake - and also for accuracy's sake!

Just be kind, and keep a lookout for me.

-- Brian Boyko

more than 4 years ago
top

Ubuntu "Memberships" Questioned

boyko.at.netqos ...chewie (210 comments)

I wouldn't worry too much about that.

Like, okay, you know in Star Wars, when Leia hands out medals to Luke and Han, but Chewie's just standing there on the podium - he doesn't get a medal?

Well, here's the thing, if you're an Ubuntu contributor and you're chosen for membership, it's like getting those medals. But if you're an Ubuntu contributor, and you're not chosen for membership, you're like Chewie - no medal. But that's not a bad thing, because, you know what? Chewie is standing up there on the podium too, and you know what, it doesn't matter if he gets a medal - because Chewie is a frickin' bad ass, and Chewie knows it.

Hell, the only reason Chewie doesn't get a medal is cause he's got like 20 or so of his own from back in the day. Let the noobs have some fun, you know? Besides, if he wanted too, he could take that medal from whiny-boy or smirk-merc. Lightsabers? Blasters? They're no use when you fuggin' rip their arms out of their sockets.

more than 4 years ago
top

EPIC Files FTC Complaint Over Facebook's New Privacy Policy

boyko.at.netqos EPIC FILE! (103 comments)

EPIC FILE!

more than 4 years ago
top

Save the Planet, Eat Your Dog

boyko.at.netqos A modest comment (942 comments)

You think a dog is bad - you should see the ecological footprint of an Irish child!

more than 5 years ago
top

Publishers Want a Slice of Used Game Market

boyko.at.netqos Re:here's how they could threaten gamestop (664 comments)

Indeed. Call of Juarez looked great, but I wasn't prepared to buy it until I could get it used; when I did, I found out that while it had a decent multiplayer, the single-player game was horribly broken. I still haven't gotten past those three guys chasing me in the beginning of the game.

more than 5 years ago
top

What OS and Software For a Mobile Documentary Crew?

boyko.at.netqos Re:I actually make documentaries (229 comments)

You're right - I've never done broadcast, where HDCam is the standard.

When you have an army at your disposal, tape is probably the way to go.

I don't have an army. All my shots are run-and-gun - for me, AVCHD has been the best thing since sliced bread.

I don't know if I'll ever work on a broadcast production, but I'm never going to buy a camera that uses tape ever again. Between dropouts, bulkiness, capture time, and disk space, I'm fed up with tape formats.

HDCam is higher quality than AVCHD; but most people can't tell the difference and I'd rather save the 48 hours of post time to do things more important.

more than 5 years ago
top

What OS and Software For a Mobile Documentary Crew?

boyko.at.netqos Re:I actually make documentaries (229 comments)

> "- And why would it be hard to get a Mac replacement? You know they deliver, don't you?"

Delivery isn't "quickly" when you're filming a documentary - less so when filming, say, in many of the one-horse towns across the globe. If you're in Auckland or Wellington, New Zealand, you're okay, but if you're in anyplace smaller than, say, Palmerston North, you might be out of luck. (Basically, Dick Smiths does carry the Mac line, but not at all stores, but not at all locations.) I can't imagine trying to find an Apple store in someplace more rural.

Additionally, the "mac tax" may be mythical, but Apple doesn't sell low-end computers; so if you need something quick and don't care about the specs, you can go that one computer store in that one town and come out with a PC for much less than the Macs - lowest priced Apple notebook is $1858NZD ($1120USD) at DickSmith.co.nz - a netbook will cost you $758NZD ($450USD).

As for the speed of FCP; I can tell you this much: I had a MacBookPro 2.4ghz Core 2 Duo system with 4 MB of RAM. I used it to edit high definition footage what was filmed in AVCHD.

Even disabling RT, applying some really basic effects like color correction won't play until you render out that clip. Rendering clips in FCP is slow because it only uses one core; and I find myself having to render constantly so I can see what I'm working on. When rendering the final product, of course, I can use Compressor, which has multicore support, but that really doesn't matter.

I'm currently using Sony Vegas on PC for my workflow - and yes, from a UI standpoint, FCP is better. Tools such as LiveType and Motion are top notch. It's friendlier and easier to use.

But Vegas never prohibited me from seeing what I was working on when I was working on it - it dynamically adjusted resolution and framerate to do so, which means that I can edit once, render once, and be done with the project. The multi-core support helps me render faster.

And of course, by setting processor affinity, I can commit the cardinal sin; have an instance of Vegas rendering on one core, while I edit the next video on the other core.

There is no such thing as a "wrong" workflow, and FCP is rightly lauded as a great choice for filmmakers working in Hollywood. If you had to standardize on a workflow, that's a good one to standardize on. Preferring Vegas doesn't mean I'm FUDding Apple.

But I make short documentaries for the Web and I do it quickly. If I was stuck out in the wilderness and had a computer die on me, but I'm able to save the hard drive, I'd want the computer to be a PC, so I can just shove the old hard drive into the new computer, or put it into an enclosure, and be done with it.

more than 5 years ago
top

What OS and Software For a Mobile Documentary Crew?

boyko.at.netqos I actually make documentaries (229 comments)

I actually make travel documentaries - when I was on the road, the most important thing for me was a computer that worked, not the OS.

The OS really shouldn't matter, but I would advise using a Windows machine with the crew. The advantages of the Mac platform are in the editing phase, so the Final Cut Studio advantages aren't a big deal.

The thing is, most of your equipment will work with Windows out of the box - we're talking things like field recorders and video capture. But the biggest aspect of Windows-based PCs that you're going to appreciate on the road is that when it breaks (and I've had a Mac break on me in LAX, and spent 2 weeks in New Zealand without a computer,) you can get a new Windows-based PC quickly and easily, so you don't have to change your workflow up. Since you're cloud computing for most stuff, just make sure that you have Google Gears and you should be fine.

----------

That should answer the original poster's post. That said, I think anyone editing on a Mac these days is missing out on a lot. Yes, Macs are still the standard for AfterEffects and Motion, but Final Cut Pro can't take advantage of multicore processing until you go through Compressor, and they can't take advantage of CUDA applications. That makes editing -slow-.

My personal workflow is Sony Vegas for a render to an uncompressed format, then Badaboom for render to MP4.

Though I'm thinking about getting Adobe Premiere Pro CS4.

more than 5 years ago
top

Giant Spiders Invade Australian Outback Town

boyko.at.netqos You know it's bad when... (373 comments)

You know it's bad when even the drop bears are leaving town, saying: "Well, that's it then, you're on your own, mate."

more than 5 years ago
top

Warner Music Forces Lessig Presentation Offline

boyko.at.netqos Re:Automatic claiming? (196 comments)

I got hit with that once, doing a documentary on Austin's air-guitar competitions. I thought that 10-15 second clips, recorded through an analog hole - a microphone placed not near the speakers, but near the air guitar stage (I was more interested in capturing the grunting and movement of the performers than a picture-perfect rendition of old 80s tunes) ... point is, I thought that'd be fine.

Time Warner, as a whole, just doesn't get technology. CNN thinks "holograms" are a great way to tell the news, they want to put caps on broadband, and they are so worried about protecting "their copyrights" that they don't understand how or why people buy music, and what they use it for.

Every business that they run that has any technological background at all is running itself into the ground because they want to sell you something first, then TELL you how THEY want you to use it, and are willing to go to absurd lengths to make sure that you only use it in the manner that they wanted you to - not the reason you bought it in the first place.

This is why they'll sue auto repair companies playing CDs for employees to listen to at work, why they'll knock on people doing anime fun conversions, why they'll knock on air guitar guys.

It's also why they'll offer broadband but put in caps so people can't use it, why they'll offer news programs but only present one or two sides of a multifaceted issue...

What can I say? They're crappy.

more than 5 years ago
top

DHS Seeks "Ethical Hackers" To Protect Federal Net Infrastructure

boyko.at.netqos No ethical hacker... (133 comments)

No ethical hacker would ever work for the DHS.

more than 5 years ago
top

Obama Proposes High-Speed Rail System For the US

boyko.at.netqos Re:In a word... (1385 comments)

Indeed; nearly every flight I take from Austin ends up connecting through Dallas. It's a 35 minute flight and I'm usually in the airport about 2 hours beforehand. I'd love to just skip that leg. I don't know if it would save me money, but a Dallas/Waco/Austin/San Antonio route, with a Houston/San Antonio, or Houston/Austin connection might make me interested.

Come to think of it, I have never been to Dallas, or Waco, or Houston, except the two times I drove from the East coast to move to Austin. I might visit Houston more if I didn't have to drive 4 hours to get there, and drive 4 hours back, you know? It'd still be 8 hours out of my weekend, but I can work on my book on the train, browse the Internet on my phone, all sorts of good stuff.

more than 5 years ago
top

Pirate Bay Trial Ends In Jail Sentences

boyko.at.netqos Robin Hood - that's why we love 'em. (1870 comments)

That's it, in a nutshell.

The RIAA has sued people it knows to be innocent, engaged in barratry, has tried to stifle long-term technology to preserve dying business models.

On the supply side of music, has been the bane of recording artists in music and movies for years - Prince changed his name to that weird symbol not only to be provocative, but also to get out of bad record contracts.

On the demand side of music, it was pretty clear even early on that piracy didn't hurt music sales. In fact, CD sales were going UP until the PR backlash from suing customers, coinciding with legal digital downloads and a down economy. What was happening was that Napster was exposing people to more music - different music - and indie artists.

They hated Napster not because it cut into their sales, but because people no longer relied on the radio to find out what new music was playing, meaning that talented artists didn't have to sign with the RIAA's labels. It was a threat to their cartel, not to their bottom line.

So, long story short, no matter what you think about the Pirate Bay or whether what they were doing was taking money away from artists or whatever -- they were Robin Hood.

They took from the evil and rich, and gave to the poor and smart. They did it while thumbing their nose at the Sheriff of Nottingham.

That's why they're loved and adored on places like Slashdot.

more than 5 years ago
top

Time Warner Expanding Internet Transfer Caps To New Markets

boyko.at.netqos Re:LoL (394 comments)

I think that bandwidth caps are a bad idea for other reasons, but the pricing is insane. I typically use 300GB/mo, mostly because I'm sending and receiving revisions of large HD video files. If the offer was for 200GB/mo for $60, plus $0.25/GB, I'd be cool with paying $25 more than someone under that cap. That to me doesn't seem unreasonable. (It's not -fair- for technical reasons of congestion and the nature of bandwidth, but at least they're not charging me an arm and a leg.) But considering that TW gets broadband wholesale at an estimated $0.10/GB, charging a 1000% markup is just obscene.

more than 5 years ago
top

Time Warner Expanding Internet Transfer Caps To New Markets

boyko.at.netqos I'm getting kicked out of my home over this... (394 comments)

I interviewed Alex Dudley, VP of PR for Time Warner Cable at Network Performance Daily on this. I tried to be impartial, but as I mention in the intro, this would raise my bill 500%, and would be a 1000% markup from Time Warnerâ(TM)s wholesale rate, and as TW is a monopoly in my apartment complex, the net effect is that Iâ(TM)m getting kicked out of my home when the billing goes live, so the interview gets heated at points. FTA:

NPD: I was wondering if you ever considered this⦠tracking the high-end users, and⦠only when the line is congested⦠throttling back their service using QoS priorities. Giving them--

Dudley: Thatâ(TM)s exactly what Comcast did about a year ago, and it caused a complete outrage and the FCC hauled them before the committee and told them they had to stop doing it.

NPD: Actually, I covered that. That's actually the result that Comcast applied after the FCC asked them to choose a different system . You're talking about the Sandvine stuff that was sending forged RST packets and the issue there was that the RST packets looked like they had come from the sender itself, which was essentially kind of a classic " Man In The Middle" attack . A kind of a fraudulent thing.

-------------

Dudley: â¦because of consumers that are using amounts like this, what we're seeing is a need for network expansion. â¦We figure⦠the top 25% of users use 100 times more network bandwidth than the bottom 25%.

NPD: Well that's just standard bell curves.

Dudley: Iâ(TM)m sorry?

NPD: Well, when you put any system on a graph like that⦠because of the 80/20 rule or the Pareto Principle or whatever it's called, when you put something on the bell curve, of course the top 25 are going to use the most bandwidth because they're the top 25â¦.

Previously, I wrote on how bandwidth caps have a chilling effect on Internet participatory culture.

more than 5 years ago
top

Mythbusters Accidentally Bust Windows In Nearby Town

boyko.at.netqos Re:Above the law, and us sheeple (500 comments)

>> The man handed over a videotape of the blast, Albers said. As of Sunday night, he had not been arrested or charged with a crime. No one was injured.

----

That's a bad example, even by the strawman standards you set.

But here's the thing - you can get away with a hell of a lot if you - and this is the key point - ask nicely.

Going to the local police force and telling them: "We'd like to go down to X Quarry and blow up Y pounds of Z explosive. We're wondering what kind of permits and paperwork would be needed, and we were wondering if you had any advice on how to ensure safety."

is not the same as:

"I think I'll blow up my truck today!"

more than 5 years ago
top

Dealing With a Copyright Takedown Request?

boyko.at.netqos Clever... (547 comments)

Oh, the poster is a clever one.

He probably KNEW the answer: "Consult a Lawyer" or "Take it down" or "Put it on Wikileaks."

But what he wanted was to get the word out about the absurdity of the test itself.

And, thanks to Slashdot, we now know a little bit more about this stupid test, we now know what the first 75 questions are, we now know that the company that makes it are trying to keep it a secret, and we now know why they are.

In short, this was a hail-mary pass for the Streistand Effect that connected. Good play, sir!

more than 5 years ago
top

Dealing With a Copyright Takedown Request?

boyko.at.netqos Re:IANAL also, but you have overlooked something. (547 comments)

The way I view it is that it's -exactly- like someone leaking Scientology's OT3 papers.

Both are ridiculous. Both rely on secrecy so that the general public doesn't know how ridiculous it is. If the general public knew how ridiculous it is, it'd be discredited immediately. Therefore, the test manufacturers have to hide behind copyright law.

Legally, I have no answers for you. Morally, as a journalist, this absolutely, positively falls under "The Public's Right To Know."

I'll call up the local major metro paper if they have one and ask if they'd be willing to help you out with this, as I'm sure their lawyers deal with questions like these all the time.

more than 5 years ago
top

Morality of Throttling a Local ISP?

boyko.at.netqos That's a horrible idea! (640 comments)

Bandwidth caps, or Pay As You Go is a horrible idea.

All Internet connections are merely the transfer of little positively and negatively charged electrical bits which stream down the wire. The limitations are not in the availability of the resource but in the capacity of distribution. We are not, in other words, "running out of bandwidth" like we run out of oil, run out of water, or run out of diapers.

What is limited is the capacity of the "pipe." To strain a metaphor, you could push Lake Michigan through a coffee stirring straw, but it would take a very, very long time.

Any pay-as-you-go plan has a fatal flaw - it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to bill people for the data they are downloading because data is not the limited resource!

What is limited is the capacity of the ISP's infrastructure at any particular moment in time, so it would be saner to limit the usage of the pipeline at a particular time.

But wait a minute! ISPs already do this - I know that my Internet connection at home is capped at a certain speed. In fact I could get a faster speed simply by asking for it and paying a premium - no delay nor needed infrastructure upgrades. Just cash.

So the move to a pay-as-you-go plan seems, to be at best a case of solving the wrong problem, and at worst a case of "double dipping" by making people pay for data and bandwidth. (If there are network slowdowns, charging people per-gigabyte won't help much if people are still downloading that gigabyte at the same time of the day, after all.)

Okay, you've got oversubscription. Here's what you do:

1) Be open and transparent with your users. Send out an e-mail, plain english, no legalese, no bull, explaining that you're currently oversubscribed, and that you are taking the following measures.

2) Implement a QoS policy that only takes effect at those times of the day when the line is congested.

3) During congestion times, provide higher QoS for customers who have, over the past 12 hour time period, used the least amount of bandwidth. During this time, someone downloading tons of BitTorrent traffic (or Linux distros via FTP) will probably see a reduction in speeds - but the information will not be blocked, and the download will complete. On the other hand, someone sending an e-mail with pictures, gaming, or chatting on Skype (all relatively low-bandwidth uses) will probably not notice a slowdown.

What this means is that:

      1. There will be no changes to packet priority when the line is not congested.

      2. The system identifies those users who are using the most bandwidth at that moment in time.

      3. It places a lower priority to the packets of those heavy users. So, in an overcongested pipe, the large file downloader (FTP or BitTorrent) will have to suffer reduced speeds at higher latency (though they will still be able to get the data) while the e-mail/web/gaming/voip user will likely not see reduced throughput or increased latency.

This is a platform, application, and protocol agnostic method of choosing who will have service reduced during times of congestion. It attacks the limited resource â" bandwidth â" without attacking the unlimited resource of data. It only takes effect during times of peak usage.

It is, in other words, a moral way to solve oversubscription problems until you can increase your capacity.

We've covered this issue extensively at networkperformancedaily.com - do a search on the site for "pay as you go" if you're interested in more detail.

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

top

Explaining Latency and "Cloud" Gaming

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos (1024767) writes "PC gamers since the dawn of Quake understand the importance of low-latency connections, but deal primarily with it in the context of FPSes where the game runs locally and only the information about movement and shooting is sent to the server. With the new advent of "cloud" gaming apps, like OnLive and Spawn HD-720, latency plays a more dramatic role. In this blog post, Network Performance Daily illustrates the difficulty associated with latency in "cloud" gaming."
Link to Original Source
top

The right amount of 'challenge' in IT & Gaming

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "In an essay entitled "An Epiphany I Had While Playing Pac-Man," NetworkPerformanceDaily.com talks about how smart people have a need to find a certain amount of challenge from day to day. If they don't find it in their workplace, they'll end up playing complex, smart games, like Civilization IV or Chess — and if they do find it in their workplace, they're more likely to sit down with a nice game of Pac-Man, Katamari Damacy, or Peggle. FTA:

"When I look back on my life, and I compare the times in my life when I was playing simple games compared to the times in my life when I was playing complex ones... a pattern emerges. The more complexity and mental stimulation I was getting from other activities — usually my day job at the time — the less I needed mental stimulation in my free time. Conversely, in times in my life when I was working boring jobs, I'd be playing games that required a lot of thinking and mental gymnastics."

The author then goes on to speculate that some IT workers might unconsciously be giving themselves more challenges by choosing to deal with difficult problems than perform simple (but boring) preventative maintenance and proactive network management.

NetworkPerformanceDaily.com published a similar column in 2007 on the relationship of gaming and IT, with an examination of why "IT geeks" are drawn to games like D&D."

Link to Original Source

top

Has desktop development hit an event horizon?

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "A rhetorical question: Why is there such an emphasis these days on both the netbook — cheap laptops without tons of computing power — and cloud application development?

Is it because we have reached the practical limitations of the different types of applications that can be developed on the desktop — that is, an increase in computing power would not enable us to do new, different things from what we do now — but only to do them faster and better? Encoding MP3s used to be a chore. DVD playback required onerous hardware requirements. Back during the turn of the century, there were just some things that you just couldn't do without a fast computer.

In this essay, NetworkPerformanceDaily.com examines the idea that the attraction of the cloud to software developers is due, in no small part, to the idea that the cloud is where the remaining challenges are; that we've reached a point where there are no big challenges to be overcome in desktop development, but that defeating the limitations of high-latency, low-throughput networks is where the challenge lies."

Link to Original Source
top

"Achievements" & "Unlocks" for

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "NetQoS, (the company I work for) makes enterprise IT network monitoring equipment. We're considering starting a program with "achievements" and "unlocks" (prizes) modeled after Team Fortress 2 — but before we start the program, we're looking for feedback. Slashdot has a really high population both of IT workers and of TF2 fans, so, we'd kinda like to know — is this a good idea or bad idea? What kind of achievements should their be, and what kind of "unlock" prizes? Finally, how would you administrate such an idea?"
Link to Original Source
top

Interview with TWC's VP of PR on broadband caps

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Brian Boyko writes "Network Performance Daily interviews Alex Dudley, VP of PR for Time Warner Cable on the plan to roll out metered bandwidth (at $1/gig) to Rochester, NY, Austin and San Antonio, Texas, and Greensboro, North Carolina. The reporter tries to be impartial, but as he mentions in his intro, this would raise his bill 500%, would be a 1000% markup from Time Warner's wholesale rate, and as TW is a monopoly in his apartment, the net effect is that he's getting kicked out of his home when the billing goes live, so the interview gets heated at points. FTA:

NPD: I was wondering if you ever considered this... tracking the high-end users, and... only when the line is congested... throttling back their service using QoS priorities. Giving them--

Dudley: That's exactly what Comcast did about a year ago, and it caused a complete outrage and the FCC hauled them before the committee and told them they had to stop doing it.

NPD: Actually, I covered that. That's actually the result that Comcast applied after the FCC asked them to choose a different system . You're talking about the Sandvine stuff that was sending forged RST packets and the issue there was that the RST packets looked like they had come from the sender itself, which was essentially kind of a classic " Man In The Middle" attack . A kind of a fraudulent thing.

-------------

Dudley: ...because of consumers that are using amounts like this, what we're seeing is a need for network expansion. ...We figure... the top 25% of users use 100 times more network bandwidth than the bottom 25%.

NPD: Well that's just standard bell curves.

Dudley: I'm sorry?

NPD: Well, when you put any system on a graph like that... because of the 80/20 rule or the Pareto Principle or whatever it's called, when you put something on the bell curve, of course the top 25 are going to use the most bandwidth because they're the top 25....

Previously, Network Performance Daily wrote on how bandwidth caps have a chilling effect on Internet participatory culture."
Link to Original Source

top

Climate change & tobacco deniers target broadb

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Brian Boyko writes "James Lakely of The Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based conservative think tank known for taking money from Philip Morris and ExxonMobil — and coincidentally, publishing papers and organizing conferences downplaying the dangers of secondhand smoke and global warming — has recently written a news article for NetworkWorld entitled "U.S. isn't falling behind in broadband,"using the old standby that population density is to blame for low U.S. broadband adoption.

Network Performance Daily published a detailed rebuttal, pointing out that France and California have similar population densities, yet France beats California in broadband, attacks the other points Lakely makes (like that a survey in Germany shows that showed that 84% of 19-29 year olds would rather ditch spouses than broadband connections) as irrelevant, and points out that Lakely only addresses broadband availability, not broadband speed or latency.

(By the way, Germany has a divorce rate of 2.3 per 1000, while the U.S. has a divorce rate of 3.6 per 1000 — so by Lakely's logic, good broadband makes good marriages.)"

Link to Original Source
top

Networking & IT knowledge trivia flash game

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "For too long, network administrators, engineers, and architects have longed for a way to determine dominance within the IT pack. Unfortunately, those efforts have been stymied without a quick and convenient way to determine IT knowledge on a quantitative scale, leading to unsatisfying substitutes like Guitar Hero or Halo tournaments.

Finally, science has solved this problem. The Network Rockstar Challenge is a way for enterprise IT geeks to determine who's got the biggest IT chops. Much like the old "You Don't Know Jack" games, the Challenge asks you ten network related questions with a ten second time limit. Get 7 or more, you're a rockstar. Six or less, and you're tossed out into the alley. The faster you get the questions right, the more points you score.

I do have to warn you — the questions are HARD — even for people in networking, and the time limit makes it even tougher. (No googling the answers!)"

Link to Original Source
top

Greetings to the people of 1958 from the future!

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Hello, those of you embarking on a new year 1959. We are just wrapping up the year 2008. It has had its ups and downs, and many people here may not consider it a very good one — we're in a bit of an economic pickle right now, we're involved in a war (don't worry, it's not a nuclear war,) and we're all worried about our troops, and global politics remains "interesting." Still, I wanted to tell you what you might have to look forward to in the next 50 years."
Link to Original Source
top

uTorrent's new UDP-based protocol

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Network Performance Daily talks with Simon Morris, V.P. of Product Management at BitTorrent, Inc. about uTorrent's new alpha, which supports a new UDP based BitTorrent protocol called "uTP."

The article corrects misapprehensions from earlier articles — far from switching to UDP to bypass TCP congestion management, uTP uses it's own congestion management, implemented at Layer 7 [Application] rather than Layer 4 [Transport]. This could provide an answer to BitTorrent critics, and ISPs who claim that BT throttling is necessary because it's "eating up bandwidth."

Morris: "I mean, it's essentially designed to be — a term that we use internally is a "scavenger protocol." It scavanges and uses bandwidth that is not being used by other applications at all, and it's designed to throttle back very very quickly in case there is any type of congestion on the line. Unfortunately the way that TCP works is — I mean it's just profoundly broken as a method of control congestion on the Internet. Especially when there are applications out there that are designed to get the most out of network bandwidth — like BitTorrent. People have tried to make TCP better, but the problem is that it's such a huge implementation task to make it happen, because you need to upgrade all of the Web servers and all of the terminals.""

Link to Original Source
top

Network Neutrality without regulation?

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  about 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Timothy B. Lee (no relation to Tim Berners-Lee), a frequent contributor to Ars Technica and Techdirt, has recently written "The Durable Internet," a paper published by the libertarian-leaning CATO institute. In it, Lee argues that because a neutral network works better than a non-neutral one, the Internet's open-ended architecture is not likely to vanish, despite the fears of net neutrality proponents, (and despite the wishes of net neutrality opponents.) For that reason, perhaps network neutrality legislation isn't necessary — or even desirable — from an open-networks perspective.

In addition to the paper, Network Performance Daily has an interview and podcast with Tim Lee, and Lee addresses counter-arguments with a blog posting for Technology Liberation Front."

Link to Original Source
top

Interview with Bullied Engineer on Aust. Filters

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  about 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Network Performance Daily has a lengthy interview (in podcast & text transcript) with Mark Newton, the network engineer who Australia's telecommunications minister tried to have silenced over his criticism of plans for a mandatory government Internet content filter. From the article:

Newton: So when you get the accurate end of the spectrum, you're left with really serious performance degradation. And the testing regime already interfered with the performance in the first place, because the organization that did the testing set up a Cisco [Catalyst] 6500 as a test environment. All these filtering systems have one Gigabit Ethernet interfaces on them, and they set the test environment up so that the filtering system would be saturated with several thousand simultaneous sessions. And you sort of do the math on the amount of bandwidth per user that they were simulating, and it was only about 40 kilobits per second (3.2KB/s) per user. Even with that awful traffic rate, they were still seeing performance degradation in excess of 70%. So we're really talking about dialup speeds here....

We have been living in a world now, with ubiquitous access to uncensored online services for about three decades. Society has not fallen apart. Parents are not bringing up children in moral values that make them turn into axe murderers and rapists. We are clearly, as a society, coping with this stuff. And it isn't actually a serious problem. And if you've been having something that isn't a serious problem, part of your life for thirty years, implementing government censorship to control that is actually a very radical position and rather than asking for what you can do instead, you actually need to be saying to the radicals, why are you doing this in the first place? Justify your existence.

"

Link to Original Source
top

Video Response to McCain's Anti-D&D Blogger

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Michael Goldfarb, a McCain staffer has taken to lumping in opponents of McCain's campaign with D&D players on McCain's official campaign blog.

"It may be typical of the pro-Obama Dungeons & Dragons crowd to disparage a fellow countryman's memory of war from the comfort of mom's basement, but most Americans have the humility and gratitude to respect and learn from the memories of men who suffered on behalf of others"

Network Performance Daily editor Brian Boyko videotaped a special comment to those remarks, in which he says:

"Senator McCain, I want to tell you something. I play Dungeons and Dragons. Millions of Americans who are of voting age play Dungeons and Dragons.... Senator, did you know that Dungeons and Dragons games are currently being played by our soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq?... Senator, did you know that for a time in 2006, I did live with my parents — I was forced to because the economy was so bad that I couldn't find a job despite having a Master's Degree?... Do you know what I did to keep myself busy? Take a wild guess..."

"

Link to Original Source
top

Deconstructing Moral Panic over Binaural Beats

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Point (USA Today, Kim Kommando):

But websites are targeting your children with so-called digital drugs. These are audio files designed to induce drug-like effects. All your child needs is a music player and headphones... However, most sites are more sinister. They sell audio files ("doses") that supposedly mimic the effects of alcohol and marijuana... The sites claim binaural beats cause the same effects as illegal drugs. These drugs impair coordination and can cause hallucinations. They've caused countless fatal accidents, like traffic collisions. At the very least, digital drugs promote drug use. Some sites say binaural beats can be used with illegal drugs...So, talk to your children. Make sure they understand the dangers of this culture. It could be a small jump from digital drugs to the real thing.

Counterpoint (Network Performance Daily, Brian Boyko):

If this sounds familiar, it's a lot like the plot behind the William Shatner-created "Tekwar" series of novels....I'm pretty much sure listening to glitch noises ain't gonna turn your kid into Reverend Jim Ignatowski....In fact, Komando even admits that "Dr. Nicholas Theodore, a brain surgeon at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, said there is no real evidence that idosers work." However, Dr. Ignatious P. Thimblebottom, who lives in the Fairie land of Gallifrey and teaches at Gumdrop University with a Doctorate in Pixienomics, has made it clear that there is conclusive make-believe evidence that i-Doser works....Of course, if you've got headphones on while driving, that can also cause traffic collisions... Trippy music combined with illegal drugs is not news. People have been doing this since they found out that jazz went really well with bathtub gin... Unlike, I presume, Kim Komando, I actually tried some of these i-Doser files, and recorded myself doing it...didn't do anything but give me a headache, much akin to the kind you get when you end up seated next to the engine on a long commercial flight.

"

Link to Original Source
top

In-Depth Followup on Texas PI law for PC techs

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Network Performance Daily has put out an in-depth series on the Texas law that requires private investigator licenses for computer repair techs, network analysts, and other IT professionals. It includes an interview with the author of the law, Texas Rep. Joe Driver, the captain of the Texas Private Security Bureau, RenEarl Bowie, and Matt Miller at the Institute for Justice, which is suing the state over the law. Finally, there's a series "summary and editorial.""
Link to Original Source
top

Author of Texas P.I. law interviewed

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Following up on "PC Repair in Texas now requires a P.I. License," Network Performance Daily interviews Texas State Rep. Joe Driver, who actually authored the bill that is causing the controversy. Podcast and full transcript are available. From the article:

"Driver: Review, analyze, and investigate" are the three key words, in my opinion, that drive the need for people to have some kind of license. Because if they're doing some of that, then they don't need to be — it doesn't need to be just anybody able to do that — they need to have somebody that has a security license. But if someone's just retrieving information and providing information for someone who is going to analyze, to use one of the words, then that's just a regular computer repair person. And those guys are great, they're good at what they do, and we never intended for them to get any kind of license other than have the ability to repair.

Interviews with Matt Miller at the Texas branch of the Institute for Justice and RonEarl Bowie of the Texas Private Security Bureau are promised to be available on the site as soon as possible."
Link to Original Source

top

Bandwidth Caps and The Cognitive Surplus

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "In a lengthy post, building on Clay Shirky's "Gin, Television, and Social Surplus," Network Performance Daily examines the Time Warner "Beaumont, TX" bandwidth caps and how this is part of a bigger issue than the TV monopoly or quality of service — what is happening is a fundamental shift in both how much free time we have, and how we spend our "cognitive capital."

Cable companies have built entire industries on a society where there is nothing better to do than veg in front of the TV; now that society is radically changing, these businesses are trying to stuff the genie back in the bottle — and one way they hope to do so is establishing bandwidth caps that limit the amount of time one can spend on the Internet. FTA:



"Whatever Time Warner's actual rationale, it has absolutely nothing to do with network performance... What about the idea of anti-competitive behavior — as services like Hulu, NetFlix, AppleTV, and others use the Internet to deliver video-on-demand? I could understand a cable company being nervous about that. ...But there's more to it than that, and to dismiss this as merely the work of the "evil cable company" is to dismiss the bigger picture and ignore something more fundamental.
"

Link to Original Source
top

Can VoIP provide the solution to rural broadband?

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "With a recent reports that up to 30% of households do not have a landline telephone, prefering a VoIP or cell-phone based solution, what to do with the miles of last-mile phone line infrastructure already in place in almost all the homes across the country? Maybe there's a solution to rural broadband by using the high-reliability frequencies reserved for voice purely for data — and using VoIP to make phone calls. From the article:

Repurposing the broadband of 0-25kHz would result in... speeds of around 14.4kBytes/s (or 115.9kbits/s) upload and 28.8kBytes/s (231.3kbits/s) download. That's not much of a speed boost. Still, if you've been plodding along on a "56.6k" modem, at speeds of 7.2kBytes/s, this would be like an oasis in the desert. And what about those phone calls? Well, if you make the same phone calls with VoIP that you were with the standard 0-4kHz landline, it would only take about 20.8kbits/s using the G.723.1 codec — that still leaves you with 80% of your broadband capacity when on the phone — and 100% of your broadband when you're off it.
"

Link to Original Source
top

The Philosophy of Net Neutrality (with RMS)

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "On the day that the House Telecommunications subcommittee meets to debate network neutrality legislation, Network Performance Daily engages Richard Stallman. Based on the idea of Stallman's critique that the term "open source" ignores the moral issues of "free software," Network Performance Daily asks whether effective and efficient broadband is a moral right and asks Stallman (and it's readers) about the deeper philosophical issues behind Net Neutrality. The result is a brief exchange of ideas designed to promote criticism and discussion. From the article:

[Editor Brian Boyko:]Metcalfe's law states that the value of a telecommunications network is proportional to the square of the number of users of the system; I believe that Metcalfe's law can be applied to humanity as a whole — that the value of us as a species is proportional to the square of the number of us who are in communication with each other.

For these reasons I believe that open and effective communication is a fundamental human right. Now, as I believe communication is a human right, the only limit one should have on their ability to communicate should be when that communication harms someone else's right to communicate.

RICHARD STALLMAN'S RESPONSE: It is hard for me to accept that, as stated, because it would imply that until the 1990s all governments were acting unjustly no matter what they did. That cannot be justice.

I think it that the term "human right" can only properly apply to matters of not hurting other people. Thus, it is abuse of language to speak of the "human right" to have food to eat. I think states have a duty to provide food to the hungry, and more generally, to operate a welfare system to help the poor and disadvantaged. Perhaps we have reached the point where wealthy states also have a duty to provide broadband to everyone. But that is a different kind of duty from that of respecting rights.

It is easy to imagine a situation in which there is insufficient supply of food for everyone to eat. But there cannot be an insufficient supply of freedom of speech to go around.
"

Link to Original Source
top

D&D 4E shows how to "close open-source.

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Concerns about Sun close-sourcing the open-source MySQL have proven to be unfounded, but Hasbro's new D&D license looks like it could do what SCO hasn't been able to — close down open-source (tabletop RPG) development in it's tracks. While both MySQL and D&D 4E's changes have been covered in Slashdot recently — it's worth looking at the issues over 4th edition Dungeons and Dragons as it might provide valuable insight into how open source projects could potentially be attacked in the future."
Link to Original Source
top

Virtualization makes Apple's Xserve a liability

boyko.at.netqos boyko.at.netqos writes  |  more than 6 years ago

boyko.at.netqos writes "Network application developers can can code apps on either the Unix or Windows Server platforms and because of virtualization, be assured that almost any enterprise will have a way to run the app. But since Leopard Server can only run on an Xserve or be virtualized on an Xserve (while Unix and Windows can also be virtualized on an Xserve) there's no incentive for enterprise application developers to code for the Leopard Server platform. Is Apple making a tactical mistake by taking technical measures to prevent virtualization of MacOSX? From the article:

Enterprise application developers know today that they can pretty much choose their choice of platform. Have a Linux app but want to sell it to a Windows shop? Virtualization comes to the rescue. Windows applications on a Unix flavor? Again, same deal... But this incentive does not exist for the Macintosh platform. Who would develop a networked server application for the Macintosh platform knowing that you can only sell it to a company that made a big investment in Xserves? Especially since you can just code it for Linux or Windows and let Apple-only shops run it in virtualization.
"

Link to Original Source

Journals

boyko.at.netqos has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?