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The Ugly State of ARM Support On Linux

svnt ARM and x86 Products are Fundamentally Different (94 comments)

There are basically three x86 processor manufacturers. The two smaller players work hard to stay compatible because their livelihood depends on it. Most of the interface functionality is off-chip.

There are many well-known ARM processor licensees. They all strive to differentiate their product offerings. In the majority of cases all of the major peripherals (which are one of the primary opportunities for differentiation) are on-chip.

As such, where minimizing differences by processor was clean and relatively straightforward for x86, expecting it to continue to work well for ARM is nonsensical. I really think Linus is missing the forest on this one.

more than 3 years ago

FCC White Space Rules Favor Tech Industry

svnt Really? (135 comments)

alternative to developing complex new sensing hardware

Please expound on "complex new sensing hardware." Like a poorly performing TV tuner? Or a crappy microphone receiver? Which of those strikes you as particularly new or complex?

You sound like someone who knows too little to be very functional but speaks too much to be easily ignored. Manager, am I right?

more than 4 years ago

Ray Kurzweil Does Not Understand the Brain

svnt Re:Because the Article Breaks Down the Claim Fully (830 comments)

It was a simple slip of the tongue. He didn't mean a million lines of code. He meant a million boxes of flow chart. It's a trivial difference.

more than 4 years ago

Feds Bust Cable Modem Hacker

svnt Re:I wish I saw this earlier (658 comments)

Generally it isn't illegal to install tint, it is only illegal to operate a vehicle on public property with illegal tint installed.

As an aside, in Oregon it is only illegal to have windows tinted over 35% if your car could not be reasonably deemed an off-road vehicle, or if does not have off-road equipment. What that means in practice is that if you want to have limo tint on your personal vehicle, all you have to do is buy an SUV. Then you can hide even more people with guns in the backseat than in a conventional vehicle. Perhaps you could even add a winch or bull bar to your Porsche to accomplish the same effect.

I guess the moral of the story is laws are often bullshit.

more than 5 years ago

US Nuclear Power Industry Poised For a Comeback

svnt Re:Grrr... (853 comments)

Let me first disclaim that I understand the offense you've taken with respect to the article, and by and large agree with you.

Yes, I agree: the fear surrounding Three Mile Island is based more on Hollywood than physics. The article makes at least one other mistake:

Many scientists and environmentalists still distrust nuclear power in any form, arguing that it can never escape its cost, safety and waste problems.

How is that a mistake? Let's borrow from m-w.com for a minute, and let's select definition number one.

it's not true that many scientists oppose nuclear power.

Now, for the preceding statement to be true, the number of scientists that make up 27% of the population must fall short of the (admittedly loose) definition of many. Assuming the Pew Research Center uses decent polling methods, and pulling our numbers for the number of scientists in the USA (2,157,300) from the National Science Foundation, your statement equates to the following:

582,471 does not constitute "many."

Interesting hypothesis.

more than 5 years ago

While Coding, How Often Do You Refer To Language Docs?

svnt Re:Willingness to check == good programmer. (303 comments)

Incompetent employees who are not lazy generally focus on the easy part of the job. Memorization is easy. Good design is difficult.

A boss early in my career told me that there are four types of employee: competent and lazy, competent and hardworking, incompetent and lazy, and incompetent and hardworking. Surprisingly to me at the time, he said most harmful to a company fall into the final category (as does your interviewer), because they cause the most damage, and they do it with pace and enthusiasm.

It is the same reason I get worried when I see a sports referee concentrating too hard on checking rosters and expiration dates. Their focus betrays the fact that they fail to recognize why they are really there.

more than 5 years ago

On Realism and Virtual Murder

svnt Re:Ban how to host a murder while you're at it. (473 comments)

So again: when you have something beyond your imagination to support your position, please share it.

I'll relate an anecdote from Grand Theft Auto.

I had some free time and set about playing GTA III for three weeks straight, in my apartment, in a vacated college town. Now, that may suggest I am OCD, but little else.

I drove for the first time in three weeks once college was back in session. I was turning around in a parking lot, and the part of my brain that said "you're probably not going to clear that car" was overridden by the part that said "ah, fuck it, I'll just grab another one." I plowed into the back of the car. Turning around, at a reasonable speed, in a parking lot.

My point is that certain somewhat realistic gut reactions can be overridden by repeatedly doing so, at least in my case. For me, it was more of a "failure to act" than taking an action. It's not like I had an overwhelming desire to flip my car off a berm or drive into a crowd. It also didn't extend beyond the car simulations, my hypothesis for that being that they better emulate reality.

more than 5 years ago

14-Year-Old Boy Smote By Meteorite

svnt Re:What's this picture for? (435 comments)

I don't want to tear into the kid, but the close up of his hand in this article really looks like the eraser burns that kids occasionally give themselves in middle school.

My guess is that he saw the meteor hit and thought it would be really cool to say it bounced off him. Then, using a trick he learned from his friends, presto - instant burn mark.

more than 5 years ago

In the next 12 months, I expect to travel by air ...

svnt Re:I'd Rather Drive or Take the Train (408 comments)

given a choice between one hour and 27, I'll take the 1 hour every time, no matter how much more relatively comfortable the 27 hour option might be - and that includes elements such as phobia of flying [...] (which I don't have, though I appreciate some do).

So, let me get your points straight.

  • You have no idea what a phobia of flying is like, but you're fully confident you're capable of suppressing it.
  • You express that you're open to any level of discomfort to save time. Two under-clothed, morbidly obese people with skin lesions, one on either side of you? No cabin pressure?

Is your world really this black and white?

more than 5 years ago

Security Flaw Hits VAserv; Head of LxLabs Found Hanged

svnt Re:Well (413 comments)

I'd be like Kevin Spacey in American Beauty...

You did see the entire movie, right?

Notable characteristics of Kevin Spacey's character: in the middle of a mid-life crisis, hated by his daughter, hates his wife, has sexual contact with a minor. Oh, and he happens to work at a fast food restaurant.

This is just a friendly suggestion, but before you tell this story to people you actually know, maybe refine your role model selection a little?

more than 5 years ago

Best kind of engineering:

svnt Software? (491 comments)

Best kind of engineering:
This resource is no longer valid. Please return to the beginning and try again.

Oh, nevermind. It appears no software engineering was involved in this poll.

more than 5 years ago

My favorite simple machine is ...

svnt Re:Only Two (490 comments)

the wheel itself is really just a lever rotating around its fulcrum

A lever rotating around its fulcrum would completely suck as a wheel.

Even assuming the fulcrum to be round (which generally makes for an unstable lever), the opposite radii of your 'wheel' would each change length, in opposite directions, by the circumference of your fulcrum - one length per revolution.

more than 5 years ago

Using WiMAX To Replace a Phone?

svnt Re:Wrong tool for the wrong job. (169 comments)

It depends. I live in Portland, Oregon and tried this with Clear, Skype, and call-forwarding.

For me personally (and I assume at least multiple other people reading this website), I primarily use my cell phone at home and at work. It works reasonably well in this situation assuming you have good coverage at both ends. The battery life is a non-issue because it is primarily plugged in. I don't answer my phone when driving anyway, so most of my friends will leave a voicemail.

The biggest issue is network latency. It is like having a conversation over (forgive me) NAT-blocked Xbox Live. There is a very noticeable lag in the conversation.

When going out, I used my cell phone for texts. You can have Skype transcribe your voicemails and SMS you with their contents. Then you can respond via email/SMS.

All in all it worked decently, although it was fairly involved to set up. I stopped using it in the end because of the lag, the fact that Clear wouldn't support the Nokia n810, and finally I got tired of lugging the netbook around. It was an interesting experiment and you could probably make do with it, but it is not very practical just yet.

more than 5 years ago

I'll keep my castle secure primarily with ...

svnt Re:Look at it from the Green POV (828 comments)

My castle will also be invaded by very nasty criminals. So nasty.

Hot Oil: Wrestling

Water: T-shirt contests

Fire: Crotch? Not good.

Pointy objects: Obvious, but potentially injury-causing.

Electricity: Shocking, although it is kind of a small niche.

I think Hot Oil is probably the victor there, mostly because I don't think many women want to douse their shirts in moat water. This is in opposition to the throngs of them just waiting for an opportunity to wrestle each other while covered in oil. Ah, my castle.

more than 5 years ago

To What Age Do You Expect To Live?

svnt Re: bell curve (575 comments)

Absolutely correct. My age + 3d20 is 3d3a. No bell curve there!

more than 5 years ago

Record-Breaking Model Rocket Launch Set For April 25

svnt Don't count your chickens (156 comments)

I was waiting for an editorial comment to the effect of "knock on wood."

He could very easily become the person who exploded the largest model rocket before it left the launch pad.

more than 5 years ago



Woman Admits Sending $400K to Nigerian Scammer

svnt svnt writes  |  more than 6 years ago

svnt (697929) writes "Janella Spears wiped out her husband's retirement account, remortgaged their paid-for house, and took out a lien against the family car in an attempt to cash in on the deal. A undercover officer involved with the investigation called it the worst example of the scam he's ever seen. Thoughtfully, Spears has gone public with her story as a warning to others not to fall victim.

No mention is made of Microsoft's denial of alleged efforts to pay the Nigerian government an equivalent amount."


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