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HP To Charge For Service Packs and Firmware For Out-of-Warranty Customers

dfries Re:Well if HP didn't already have a terrible rep.. (385 comments)

How would the switch know what is inside the ethernet frames?

By the time you get up to 48 ports, it's probably not a dumb switch. The layer 3 switches do look into them to do routing depending on how they are configured. IPv6 requires multicast support, and while dumb switch will send the packet out all ports, when you get up to 48 ports you only want to send it to the ports that are interested in it, and I've seen some switches that refuse to send any multicast unless there's a system sending out the IGPM query packets, or you specifically login to configure what ports to send it on. LAN switching - Layer 3 switching

about a year ago

AMD Says There Will Be No DirectX 12 — Ever

dfries Re:We did it! (305 comments)

Before someone says "but OpenGL supports mutil-threading". No it doesn't. It supports multi-threaded worker threads for the drivers, but it does not support multiple threads communicating to the same context.

OpenGL supports multi-threading, just not when you give it that limitation. A context can only be active in one thread, so create multiple contexts, setup sharing so they can all use the same display lists, textures, and such, one thread draws to the frame buffer, the others upload textures, draw to frame buffer objects which becomes textures, whatever so all the data is ready for the drawing thread when it, you know, goes to draw. As far as I know modern graphics cards have lots of GPU cores, but they are all working on the same operation, so no matter how many threads you have feeding it draw commands, they are all getting serialized anyway.

about 2 years ago

Ubuntu For Tablets Announced

dfries Re:I love Linux, I want Linux, but this isnt Linux (148 comments)

This is as Linux as Android is. Hell Android is probably more Linux this this.

I just dont understand why these mobile OS's keep wanting to force developers into a specific language. ... and now Ubuntu mobile OS is pushing QML/Javascript/HTML5.

I agree with your Android assessment, and even your JavaScript assessment for anything of a descent size complexity or efficiency demand, but I don't agree with your Ubuntu QML/Javascript/HTML5 assessment. QML is the 'new' (going on three maybe four years), GUI system for Qt. Qt is written in C++, you can write something only in QML, but I wouldn't and I haven't. The last large program I worked on from scratch was most all C++ using Qt, and used QML/JavaScript for the GUI. Even then for such as a QML button you use JavaScript for trivial stuff, because each QML property is assigned with a line of JavaScript such as the following.
width: height*3.0/4
color: global_background

So in those kinds of cases JavaScript is almost transparent, in other cases it is more of a glue between the C++ layer to modify properties or get feedback from the GUI by calling a routine in C++. QML isn't a programming language, it uses JavaScript for that, and the use of JavaScript can be kept to an absolute minimal assignments, so if you already know C/C++ then you wouldn't even have to know it was JavaScript.

In summary from my experience with C++/Qt/QML, it isn't going to be the pure C++ you are asking about, but if you are doing something with a GUI then this is going to let you do all the stuff you care about in C++ (and on Linux).

about 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: What Practices Impede Developers' Productivity?

dfries Re:negative value comments Too Much Documentation (457 comments)

Putting in a code comment that documents why something is the way it is, when it is not obvious is good. Commenting what something does is good for an overview of a complicated routine. Then there's what I would term negative value comments. The ones that take up a line commenting the next line that was so obvious that anyone couldn't have gotten what the comment said by half looking at the code wouldn't have understood what the comment was trying to tell them either.

Actual comments from C++ code in production that I've seen.

// ladies and gents we have a textured quad
m_TexturedPolygon = true;

// construct the input string stream
std::istringstream iStream(buf);

// set color states

// includes
#include "...

If a comment doesn't add value it takes away value by taking up space, time to read it and try to ignore it, question the value of any comments by that person in the future, and such. That's why I can them negative value comments.

about 2 years ago

The State of In-Flight Wi-Fi

dfries Re:Black Box (80 comments)

Aircraft health data is is being sent for at least some aircraft air china lauds real time health monitoring/ it doesn't specify what data link, but it's probably not everything that would be on the black box, but at least some of it gets down.

more than 2 years ago

ARM Code for Raspberry Pi Goes Open Source (Video)

dfries Cubieboard? Re:Count me stunned (91 comments)

As far as I know, there is no Raspberry Pi equivalent using the A10.

This is the system I'm watching, http://cubieboard.org/ 1GHz ARM cortex-A8, Mali400, 1GB RAM, Ethernet, USB, SATA, $49. I would need to learn more about both to compare GPIO. From their web page (and links), they've shipped one batch, getting ready to ship another, and larger batch in about a month.

If Cubieboard was available now I would have picked one up, but with the Raspberry Pi upgraded to 512MB and this source code release it's going to be a much more difficult choice with that SATA weighing very much on the Cubieboard side.

more than 2 years ago

Stress-Testing Software For Deep Space

dfries Re:"earlier Mars mission" == MER-A Spirit (87 comments)

It is worse if it must rearrange memory to accomodate the request.

You were going okay until here. You can't rearrange memory, malloc returns pointers, and there isn't any callback to ask for that pointer back to move it to another location.

Byte compiled languages like Java can rearrange memory but you call new not malloc so I know you weren't talking about them. Garbage collection is a much bigger problem especially if you think about mixing Java and real time operations. C/C++ in realtime means following the best practices, but for Java, get a different Java http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Real_time_Java.

more than 2 years ago

Linux 3.6 Released

dfries Re:Comparison (143 comments)

I guess we know what stuff matters. :/

Linux kernel mailing list, 774 today *
Guess we know where the Linux kernel activity is.

* and there's still 4 hours of today left for me

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Hackable Portable Music Player For Helicopters?

dfries N900 + bluetooth (158 comments)

I'm using my Nokia N900 for in car entertainment, aka podcasts while I drive. Since the radio uses bluetooth I'm using its buttons to control it, but I also used to use a bluetooth mouse I use while on a walk to control it. The mouse could be solder up someway to trigger the three mouse buttons and scroll wheel to send inputs over bluetooth. I don't use a display while driving, and the daylight readable would be a problem for most portable players and cell phone systems. Still since I have it working that's the route I would be taking.

more than 2 years ago

Budget 27" IPS Displays From Korea Are For Real

dfries Re:single link dual link with a dual link single l (266 comments)

They didn't used to do that. My first APC UPS had a standard B USB port on it to take a standard cord.

If you are observant the cable is a keyed RJ-45, so you couldn't plug it into an ethernet port (an ethernet RJ-45 will plug into the UPS though), and if you are really observant it is a 10 conductor RJ-45 end where ethernet is 8. I haven't decided if they are trying to be extra cheap or make it so that one cable has a USB A port on the other end and a different one has a RS-232, with each uses different contacts on the UPS side. Then again if they were trying to support RS-232 and UPS then the older UPSes would be the ones that might need it not the newer ones.

The lame part is my second UPS came from the store as a bundle, the UPS, a separate power strip, and an extra long USB A to B cord which I was planning to use to put the UPS further away from the computer, imagine my surprise when I got the bundle and found there was no way that was going to plug in to the UPS.

more than 2 years ago

It Costs $450 In Marketing To Make Someone Buy a $49 Nokia Lumia

dfries Re:Unfortunately, Nokia has no Steve Jobs (363 comments)

$70 doesn't sound like a bad price for the phone you posted, and running on a AA battery is a good idea. But for a car, why spend the money? Use an old cell phone. Back before I bought my first cell phone my mom gave me an old cell phone of hers for that purpose, I just checked and it is 2/3 bars of battery after probably having the last charge three years ago. The trick is to remove the battery before leaving it for emergencies. Being ready to respond to the on button really drains the battery (probably the real time clock), but whatever, the battery will last longer outside of a cell phone than in it even off.

Now that I've bought my first cell phone (Nokia N900 Maemo/Linux) and changing cars that spare phone hasn't made it back out to the car, but maybe it should, after a fresh charge.

more than 2 years ago

Slashdot Coming Attractions

dfries don't force 965 minimum width, ditch size bars (410 comments)

If my browser's width is less than 965 pixels it gives me a scroll bar preventing the browser from wrapping further even though the the main story is 478 pixels wide. That also means that portrait browsing my cell phone doesn't work because either the text is too small to read, or I zoom in and have to scroll side to side to see every line. Related to the above, give an option to ditch the side boxes completely. You go about an eighth of the way down one day's front page stories and both the left and right boxes run out and from then it it's white wasted space.

more than 2 years ago

Microsoft Shows Off Adaptive, Multilingual Text to Speech System

dfries hour training, both ways? (171 comments)

Aren't they completely missing the point when they list an hour of training? If it takes an hour to understand me enough to translate it into another language it's going to take another hour for them to train to be able to respond (either it requires training for a person or it doesn't). That makes it pointless, good luck finding a local to spend an hour talking to a computer so they can answer your simple question.

more than 2 years ago

Nevada Approves Rules For Self-Driving Cars

dfries Re:Linked story lacking in details (307 comments)

In the test vehicles (presumably the ones with red plates), there must be 2 people in the vehicle at all times, with one able to immediately take over control.

Anyone find it a bit strange that they would need a new law in Nevada to do what they've already been doing in California? Or is it intended to keep the home hobbyist out of the market? Why two people for a car that's supposed to be able to drive itself? They say what the one person is supposed to do, be ready to take over control, but the other?

more than 2 years ago

June 6 Is World IPv6 Day 2012: This Time For Keeps

dfries Re:IPv6 Info, bad link (463 comments)


I see you didn't actually visite the page, because that gives a page not found error, try this one, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPv6 and I verified it actually works, (just disable javascript).

about 3 years ago

June 6 Is World IPv6 Day 2012: This Time For Keeps

dfries Re:IPv6 Info, disable Javascript to read Wikipedia (463 comments)

in a manner which brings attention to the issue, but does not disrupt normal operations.

They put a really low bar to get around their block, just disable javascript reload and keep reading! At least that was my first thought when I viewed it and with konqueror it's an easy menu option to disable javascript for the current window. Now it looks like they disabled editing for every english wikipedia article, and that you can't get around.

about 3 years ago

Television White Space Spectrum Approved For Use By FCC

dfries Re:Can I watch these new applications on TV . . . (107 comments)

So what if I haul that old, dusty analog TV out of the attic, switch it on and tune it to one of these new applications? What will I see? Strange, weird pulsating patterns? Or garbled snow and fuzzy sounds?

I would expect it to be similar to the channels that are now carrying digital tv channels. Both an unused channel and a channel that is now broadcasting digitally display a snow pattern, but the digital channel is distinct, still snow, but a different enough pattern that if you see both you can visibly identify the difference. That is unless the analog decoder replaces the snow with a solid color (like blue).

more than 3 years ago

Moxie Marlinspike Answers Your Questions

dfries overheated laptop (76 comments)

My laptop had been having an overheating problem that wasn't obvious was a heat problem for months. I just started noticing that doing something intensive, yes like compiling the kernel, would cause the CPU MHz listed in /proc/cpuinfo to drop down, sensors listed the temperature going up, but it wasn't obvious what the range or limit was. In the end I went to replace the thermal paste on the CPU, but only got as far as removing the fan and seeing a huge buildup mat of dust and fiber blocking the heat-pipe fins. I removed that and the issue went away. There just isn't any way to see the area what was blocked until the fan was removed, and the rest of the system looked dust free, at least nothing to make me think there was a problem. If you're still reading this Moxie Marlinspike, you might want to check to see if your solution is as easy as mine.

more than 3 years ago

TV Ownership Declines For Second Time Since 1970

dfries Re:Seems like a meaningless metric (349 comments)

Just because the TV numbers are down does not mean people are not watching the show online, on their phones, in a pub...

That's completely true, they don't count that way of viewing TV content. My household was randomly picked earlier this year to collect TV viewing habits. I was disqualified, because I don't own a TV, never mind that I have two computers each with a tuner card, and one is a digital TV tuner. I talked to one of their install representatives, they install an audio pickup on a speaker and use that to collect what is being watched when, I don't know why they couldn't do that to a computer, although it would be much more likely to pick up VoIP and such. So I've contributed to the decline of households without TVs, even though I can watch it just as well as anyone with a TV. I have effectively stopped watching TV since Star Trek Enterprise was canceled, so at least the viewing hours will be accurate.

more than 3 years ago


dfries hasn't submitted any stories.



Rebooting a Space Suite?

dfries dfries writes  |  about 12 years ago On the latest International Space Station Status Report of January 15, 2003 They wrote the following.

After encountering some difficulty opening the airlock hatch due to a strap on the inside of the thermal hatch cover, the hatch finally swung open and Bowersox and Pettit began their spacewalk at 6:50 a.m. Central time by placing their suits on internal battery power. As he did, Bowersox reported a loss of digital data for his suit systems, requiring him to recycle his suit power that cleared up the momentary glitch. Once outside, Bowersox and Pettit quickly set up tools and gear, then moved to the recently installed Port One (P1) Truss segment, where they released ten remaining launch restraints from the truss' radiator system. Eight others had been released when the truss was delivered to the ISS last November on the STS-113 mission.

Let's see, a problem with a digial system, and required him to "recycle his suit power", it sounds like he rebooted his space suit to me.

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