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Ask Slashdot: Life Beyond the WRT54G Series?

ponos Re:Enterprise grade AC (427 comments)

Thanks for the information!

I have tried some modest consumer-level equipment with disappointing results so I was thinking of either going high-end consumer or even pro. In the end, I'm probably going to take the plunge. As you say, I don't want to change equipment every year...

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Life Beyond the WRT54G Series?

ponos Re:Enterprise grade AC (427 comments)

This is an expensive solution, but I am tempted. Is it better than the equivalent top-end consumer grade products like the Netgear R7000 or the Asus RT68? Specifically, I was thinking of the combination Ubiquiti EdgeRouter PoE + Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC which is almost $700 of gear. Is it worth it for a gigabit home network with a 300MBps fiber connection?

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Life Beyond the WRT54G Series?

ponos Re:NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 (427 comments)

Any other experiences with the Nighthawk AC1900? The hardware seems quite good. I don't mind the price, up to about $250, but I plan on getting 300MBps fiber so I need a router that can reliably route that plus handle my gigabit home network.

about three weeks ago
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The Doctor Will Skype You Now

ponos Value of physical examination (97 comments)

A classical article on the subject, quite old now, has concluded that approximately 80% of diagnoses can be made from the history (ie a structured interview) with a further maybe 10% from physical examination and maybe 5% from additional investigations (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1673456/). Obviously, the requirements for modern medicine and the available means are a bit different. Nevertheless, any serious doctor will tell you that the history taking and the physical examination are the most important parts of an encounter with a patient.

This is a direct result of Bayes theorem: the interview and physical define the "prior" probability for any diagnosis and any further investigations will only serve to modify it by a certain degree (confirm or exclude). With the exception of some quite aggressive diagnostic methods, like a biopsy or laparoscopy, which will never be recommended upfront, most investigations are generally not sufficiently sensitive or specific enough to give a conclusive diagnosis.

Finally, the physical (which cannot be done via Skype) is also a very important component of the physician and patient relationship. An encounter without physical examination seems, in my humble opinion, quite superficial. Patients are generally more satisfied if you take the time to carefully examine them.

That being said, Skype can be a decent solution for people living in remote areas where transportation can be a real problem. Skype for people living in major cities is a bit silly, I think.

PS. I am physician, but I am curious to hear what you think about the value of physical examination.

about three weeks ago
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AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K

ponos Re:It's a laptop chip... (117 comments)

Read: "AMD is just as good as Intel when they aren't doing anything"
What a pathetic piece of shilling that is. Really scraping the bottom of the barrel to find ANY redeeming quality in AMD CPUs, eh?

Well, if "not doing anything" is what your PC does a long part of the day, idle power consumption can be of some importance. That does not necessarily redeem AMD cpus, but it is worth mentioning in my opinion. Obviously, you seem to think that all discussion should be limited to "AMD sucks". Even if true, this does not make for a very interesting read.

about three weeks ago
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AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K

ponos Re:It's a laptop chip... (117 comments)

I'll believe it when I see it. AMD CPUs always run hotter and used more energy in real life tests.

Well, in idle, which is what most processors do in typical user workloads, the 7800 is comparable to intel processors. Total energy to accomplish a task obviously varies, but the 7800 uses 30-50% more energy than intel processors for the same task. However, the 7 series APUs are clearly more efficient than the 6 series Richland APUs that they replace. Peak power consumption is around 100W for a complete system with 7800, which is not a huge thermal load.

In the end, what I'm saying is that AMD improved power efficiency way more than absolute performance, something that is more important in the portable space. You're looking at maybe 10% faster than Richland at the CPU side but with 20% less energy. Obviously, they could have chosen different power/performance tradeoffs, if they wanted to compete on the desktop.

For some numbers, you can have a look at Techreport or Anandtech (http://techreport.com/review/26845/amd-a10-7800-processor-reviewed/3). I am not aware of any tests concerning the laptop variants, but they should appear soon.

about three weeks ago
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AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K

ponos Re:This just in... (117 comments)

Yeah, set it for 45w max and you end up with the CPU side of it constantly getting throttled and the performance sliding even further into the dirt. But you're right about GPU dependant loads. But if that was my usage case, I'd probably wait for Isis Pro to trickle down to Intel's low-end.

Benchmarks from the smaller 7600 only show a modest performance hit from going to 45W, approximately 10%. Isis Pro is a brute force solution to the problem (huge on-chip RAM) and is likely to stay quite expensive for a while because of die-size and limited production. A discrete GPU is probably the better option at that price point (ie replace the cheapest $450 Iris pro with $450 cpu + GPU), unless if low power consumption is an absolute priority.

Affordable on-chip graphics RAM may become standard in future AMD and intel processors but I wouldn't hold my breath...

about a month ago
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AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K

ponos Re:Will AMD APUs ever support ECC RAM? (117 comments)

They will probably make some version for the server market, but it will certainly be on another socket. The socket AM3+ does support ECC (if you choose the right motherboard, ASUS usually do...) but the upgrade path is probably stuck forever at the FX8350. It isn't a bad chip, actually quite good for multithreaded loads, but it's getting old... If you want ECC for cheap you could buy a lower-end socket AM3+ processor like the FX4350, otherwise Xeon is clearly the better choice.

about a month ago
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AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K

ponos It's a laptop chip... (117 comments)

What most people don't realize is that the desktop version is basically an afterthought. The chip has been optimized for laptops, where it does make some sense (adding a discrete GPU is not an option after purchase and laptops with discrete GPUs are quite more expensive, so the comparative advantage is more important). AMD knows they can't win on the desktop, which is why they didn't bother with extreme caches, 4-module (8-core) versions and cherry-picked chips with crazy TDPs. Personally, I'm much more excited with the laptop version of Kaveri, such as the 7350B in the HP EliteBook 745 G2.

Anyway, for the price it makes a really great casual gaming PC, especially for people who are price sensitive and can't afford a +$100 discrete GPU (in some places this is a decent chunk of a month's salary...).

about a month ago
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NVIDIA Launches Tegra K1-Based SHIELD Tablet, Wireless Controller

ponos Use case? (42 comments)

I don't really see the need for gaming on the go, and if such a need exists, isn't it sufficiently covered by existing gadgets (smartphone or non-gaming tablet)? Furthermore, are the current tablet games worth buying hardware specifically for the job? What would be the point of Angry Birds at 120fps?

Anyway, the hardware looks cool, but the fact that no other manufacturer bothered to use the nvidia hardware is a bit disconcerting. If it were the best thing since sliced bread, many designs would have flooded the market.

about a month ago
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New Treatment Stops Type II Diabetes

ponos The quality of the treatment matters (253 comments)

Although a definite cure would be nice, simply improving the quality of glycemic control would be a revolution. Optimal glycemic control can be very complicated, especially for patients who do not have the courage to follow strict dietary and healthstyle recommendations. Being able to treat a complicated disease with a single daily injection sounds nice. I know it would simplify my job as an MD...

about a month ago
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New Treatment Stops Type II Diabetes

ponos Re:There's another treatment that stops most T2 (253 comments)

I am not a great cook but I do enjoy cooking and I can't think of a texture that you can't achieve with good materials and decent cooking technique. Healthy food really doesn't have to have a bad texture I think. Maybe an investment in a few cooking books and some classes would help you?

about a month ago
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Mozilla Doubles Down on JPEG Encoding with mozjpeg 2.0

ponos HSA decoder (129 comments)

AMD recently presented HSA-enabled jpeg decoding. That would also be an interesting addition. Make these shaders work a little...

http://developer.amd.com/resou...

about a month and a half ago
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When will large-scale IPv6 deployment happen?

ponos Re:We already built a new Internet (305 comments)

See, this is the thing. We let you on the last Internet we built, the one we started with 110 baud modems, and you messed it up.

So we already built a new Internet 2. It's here, it runs on 100 GB/s ports with 40 GB/s campuswide at all the top research universities.

And we're not letting you on it.

Who is "we"? Judging from your attitude you probably weren't even born at the time. But anyway, I wanted to point out that several "private" networks exist for the military, big companies etc. When we say the Internet, we implicitly assume that it can be used to to send email to anyone, browse anything and use all kinds of services. Any big private network cannot be a substitute. So, if you need to come out of your walled garden to post messages in Slashdot, order stuff from Amazon and read your gmail account, maybe your new internet is not much more than a data exchange mechanism. Which is great, really, but you can't call it "Internet 2" because it seems to me that it is missing some key functionality.

about 2 months ago
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When will large-scale IPv6 deployment happen?

ponos Re:IPv6 already massively deployed (305 comments)

IPv6 is already massively deployed in the United States.

Example: all major hosting providers support IPv6.

Thank you for this informative post. I was under the impression that at least the Linux network stack and, most probably, the Win 7-8 network stack are fully IPv6 compatible. I know my router is IPv6 compatible and I had used IPv6 briefly in the past (via tunneling) out of curiosity. So, why is everyone so pessimistic? How hard can it be to just enable IPv6 if everything is ready at the user side?

about 2 months ago
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$3000 GeForce GTX TITAN Z Tested, Less Performance Than $1500 R9 295X2

ponos Re:AMD Consistent framerate, since when? (151 comments)

the R9 295X2 offered higher and more consistent frame rates

http://cdn.pcper.com/files/ima...

But not "stable", "consistent" or "smooth". This is still a major issue with the core of all AMD cards which hasnt been fixed.
You get what you pay for. Nvidia might be the "expensive" of the bunch, just wish i forked out a little more instead of getting my HD7770.

Do you realize that in the graph you linked no card dips below 50fps at any time? In fact, if you count the occasional peaks crossing the (ridiculously low) 15ms/66fps threshold, the Titan Z shows 6 frames slower than 15ms and the 295X2 shows 4 frames at more than 15ms (if I count correctly). You really can't argue that the Titan Z is smoother. All cards are extremely smooth.

about 3 months ago
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$3000 GeForce GTX TITAN Z Tested, Less Performance Than $1500 R9 295X2

ponos AMD fp64 rate (151 comments)

I would just like to point out that the 295X2 has superior absolute gaming performance and superior fp32 performance but, just like most gaming NVidia products, the fp64 is crippled at 1/8 fp32 rate at configuration in order to create a profit margin for the costlier "pro" products. The hardware itself is capable of 1/2 fp64 rate and should be superior to the Titan Z if AMD decides to offer "pro-level support".

As proof, consider the fp64 rate of the single-chip AMD W9100, sold at ~$4000, which is 2.6 TFlops (http://www.amd.com/Documents/FirePro_W9100_Data_Sheet.pdf), versus the 2.7 TFlops of the Titan Z (1/3 fp32 rate, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G...). AMD could unlock the 295X2 at its full potential 5.2 double precision TFlops and release it any day if they want, crushing the Titan Z.

Honestly, instead of the Titan Z, I'd rather buy the AMD W9100 for $4000 and get equivalent double precision compute rate, better perf/W and, most importanty, certification for pro applications and ECC memory. That is certainly worth the extra $1000 in this product segment.

about 3 months ago
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iOS 8 Strikes an Unexpected Blow Against Location Tracking

ponos Users should start asking for privacy (323 comments)

The adoption of measures protecting privacy depends on user demand. Online commerce has been considered safe enough for years yet exchanging an email or having any online activity is completely unprotected. I was always surprised by lack of interest from users. Maybe the younger users, if they are not yet addicted to making all their life public on facebook et al would put some pressure for simple technical solutions that guarantee a basic level of privacy. Obviously, I don't expect complete protection against three-letter agencies; that's not the point. In that sense, this looks like a step in a desireable direction, even if it is done for the wrong reasons. As a potential customer, I appreciate this effort.

about 3 months ago
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EU Launches World's Largest Civilian Robotics Program; 240,000 New Jobs Expected

ponos Re:A bad idea for reasons of basic economics (171 comments)

Because the funding source doesn't have a clue nor would it have any interest in spending the money efficiently or effectively. Just because there are more zeroes on the check doesn't mean that more science is being done.

I understand that the private sector can be more efficient for certain things, but these are not gifts nor scholarships. I have applied for EU finding and I can tell you that there is a lot of work that goes into proving that they got their money's worth. You have progress reports to do, intermediate results to publish and paperwork to fill in order to keep the funding. Getting the money without doing any research (=stealing) is not that easy and, in my limited experience, does not occur that often.

How about useful research? Government funding isn't so extremely important, when you want research that actually pays for itself within a few centuries.

That's a philosophical viewpoint that, in my opinion, produces short-sighted research of the kind that will give you incremental iPhone updates but no major breakthrough. I cannot convince you of the validity of this claim, but true science is a high-risk and long-term endeavor of the kind that does not appear favorably in quarterly financial statements. The private sector revolves around the next yearly bonus, not about a project that can pay off 10 or 20 years later. Also, don't forget that private "research" is locked under patents and any useful results do not necessarily benefit the society as a whole (at least for 10+ years). So, even if you assume that research by private organisations compares favorably, it is not truly equivalent.

I don't see why it's so hard to see that. "Hard and competitive" doesn't mean anything of value happens. All those people striving for easy money when they could be doing something productive for society?

How about you try to get that "easy" money. Have a look at the requirements for application in the Horizon 2020 EU research program. You need several AAA laboratories (ideally, with multiple Nature/Cell/Science publications) in order to stand a chance. Now, if you feel that basic research is not "productive", I'm probably wasting my time. At least consider the possibility that big research projects produce side effects that are beneficial but difficult to measure (say, WWW was invented initially for use in CERN).

about 3 months ago
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EU Launches World's Largest Civilian Robotics Program; 240,000 New Jobs Expected

ponos Re:Is this Slashdot? (171 comments)

How many of these "robot maintainers" are white/Asian, and how many are African-American/Latino?

Yeah, that's what I thought, you right-wing racist prick. All you want to do is put people who don't look like you out of a job. Fuck you.

Hm, I do agree that some people may lose their jobs, but I don't see how you inferred that they would be African-American or Latinos. I did not mention race in my post and, in my value system which is not particularly right-wing, all lost jobs are equal independent of the race of people who lost them. It just so happens that the loss of some jobs in a certain sector may be the result of great progress in other aspects of life. So, I believe the overall balance is or could be positive. At least if you are optimistic about that sort of thing.

about 3 months ago

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