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GNU Grep and Sed Maintainer Quits: RMS and FSF Harming GNU Project

toastyman Re:grep -p (476 comments)

I worked with a Russian programmer of very few words, who willingly ran AIX as his desktop OS. When asked why, he said "I enjoy the strict confines of AIX."

I had absolutely no idea how to respond to that.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do SSDs Die?

toastyman Some anecdotes (510 comments)

We've got a fair number of SSDs here. Failures have been really rare. The few that have:

#1 just went dead. Not recognized by the computer at all.
#2 Got stuck in a weird read-only mode. The OS was thinking it was writing to it, but the writes weren't really happening. You'd reboot and all your changes were undone. The OS was surprisingly okay with this, but would eventually start having problems where pieces of the filesystem metadata it cached didn't sync up with new reads. Reads were still okay, and we were able to make a full backup by mounting in read only mode.
#3 Just got progressively slower and slower on writes. but reads were fine.

Overall far lower SSD failure rates than spinning disk failure rates, but we don't have many elderly SSDs yet. We do have a ton of servers running ancient hard drives, so it'll be interesting to see over time.

more than 2 years ago

USPS To Ban International Shipping On Lithium Ion Powered Gadgetry

toastyman Re:Canada will keep the USPS alive (131 comments)

DHL is probably another good one - their fees are pretty reasonable (similar to Canada Post's), but very few American companies support DHL as a shipping option (probably because it sucked inside the US - despite being close or is the #1 worldwide carrier).

DHL ended US-to-US delivery in 2009. They have a service where they'll use the USPS for local delivery, but it's expensive and slow. They also don't do pickup service (for any destination country) in many parts of the US now, so they've made it really hard for US companies to use them. Not all of it is their fault, but it's hard to use DHL if you're in the US now.

more than 2 years ago

Inventor of the Modern Pinball Machine Dies At 100

toastyman Re:R.I.P., Mr. Kordek. (89 comments)

Off topic trivia: Rudy's voice in Funhouse was done by Ed Boon, creator of the Mortal Kombat franchise of games/movies/etc.

more than 2 years ago

Inventor of the Modern Pinball Machine Dies At 100

toastyman I worked with Steve (89 comments)

I worked at Williams/Bally/Midway/Atari/etc in the late 90's. I worked in the coin-op video game division, where Steve was across the street in the pinball division. Occasionally he'd swing by our building, and had a fondness for the game system I was working on, so he'd sit at the test machine outside my office and play for quite a while. He always had this knack for making what sounded like the simplest suggestion, yet it actually being a profound change that took it to the next generation.

He'd walk into my office and say "You know, I like (game X) a lot. Have you thought about adding (feature Y)? It's probably a lot of work, but maybe worth it?" and an hour later we were smacking our foreheads as to why we hadn't thought of that ourselves. There's no doubt in my mind how he could look at something like a flipperless pinball machine and figure out how to take it to the next level. It's something I really wish I could do more often myself.

He was a great guy, and one of the most patient people I've known. He'll be greatly missed.

more than 2 years ago

A Tidy, Maintainable Cabinet Wiring Methodology?

toastyman Re:some day (43 comments)

Do you mean like these?

more than 8 years ago


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