* Posts by Def

1490 posts • joined 8 Jul 2009

All-electric plane makes first flight – while lugging 2 tons of batteries aloft

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Re: Could someone check the numbers?

Once you reach a certain speed most noise in a commercial jet is from the wind. This is most noticeable in planes with the engines mounted on the tail. They’re pretty quiet on take off, but the wind noise soon becomes apparent during the climb out.

Microsoft brings WinUI to desktop apps: It's a landmark for Windows development, but it has taken far too long

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Re: What UI framework was used to develop Teams?

I don't know the framework it's using, but it comes as a 90MB executable (plus DLLs and resources). What the fuck they've contained in there I don't know, but I don't think I could make an executable that big even if I tried. All of my recent desktop applications are a couple of MB, if that.

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Re: developers to adopt the look and feel of UWP

The Windows Phone UI worked extremely well. Much better than Android. (Which isn't a particularly high bar, I'll admit.)

Linus Torvalds drops Intel and adopts 32-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper on personal PC

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Re: $$$

hah That's true. I have a quad GPU mining machine in my hallway which does help a lot in the winter. (And during the "summer" if I'm being brutally honest.)

My place is always cold (I'm pretty sure it was built on some ancient burial ground) so every little helps.

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Re: Minimum spec?

Nope, not us.

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Re: Minimum spec?

I worked somewhere a long time ago (a games company) that gave all developers low-spec machines for testing. (We had slightly higher spec machines for the actual coding and compiling, and secondary machines for remote debugging/testing.)

It didn't work. We stuck with it - we were a small company with a limited budget, but it was a painful experience - unoptimised (by the compiler) debug code always runs slower than optimised code, and algorithm optimisation only ever happens towards the end of the project - unless something is abjectly too slow to be pushed.

For maximum developer efficiency, you need to make daily workflows as optimal and as streamlined as possible. And that includes fast hardware for development and testing. You will need to test on slower hardware eventually, but that slow hardware should never be your primary test environment.

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Re: $$$

Almost 2,000 just for the CPU.

£2300 in Norway. As nice as it would be, I can't justifying spending 50% more than my monthly mortgage payment on a processor. :/

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Well, he had Minix as a starting point.

From what I recall (it was a *very* long time ago) the hardest parts about booting an OS were dealing the bullshit involved in switching from 16-bit mode into protected mode. (Yes, all x86 based PCs *still* start in 16-bit mode.) Not an impossible task, obviously, but it could have been easier.

I did have fun writing the floppy (that's how long ago this was) boot loader though. You basically needed to read the root directory of the the boot drive, find the secondary boot loader (or kernel), load it into memory, and start executing it within the 512 bytes available on the first sector of the disk. I managed it in 396 bytes (I just checked) including error messages and debug print functions. I think I was trying to switch to protected mode before loading the kernel in the remaining 116 bytes, before other projects, work, and having a life got in the way. :)

Bionic eyes to be a thing in the next decade? Possibly. Boffins mark sensor-density breakthrough

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Facepalm

Aw shit. :D

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...and to be able to see round corners

All iPhone users can see round corners already. I think, perhaps, you want to be able to see around corners.

(Mine's the one with Pendatry for Dummies in the pocket.)

If you're appy and you know it: The Huawei P40 Pro conclusively proves that top-notch specs aren't everything

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Re: Google apps etc. via browser?

So, it does appear they've made some improvements since I last tried it. (Always happy to be proven wrong.)

When they first changed to the new look about six months ago it was pretty much completely broken on Safari. I had to go back to reading books. It was a nightmare. ;)

It's still a lot more sluggish than it was before, but that's "progress" for you, I guess (and my iPad is rather old now too, so I won't complain too much about that).

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Re: Google apps etc. via browser?

YouTube on Safari is worse than abysmal. It's so bad now that I've basically given up watching videos on my iPad. (Not going to use the app because AdBlock Plus.)

The end really is nigh – for 32-bit Windows 10 on new PCs

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In my experience, C++ code is, generally speaking, only as convoluted as the person who wrote it.

There's a lot of shit in the Standard Library that shouldn't be there, and a lot of shit missing that should. But if you can navigate that minefield successfully (and steer clear of some of the more obnoxious newer parts of the language), it's still perfectly possible to write decent code.

(A C++ fan.)

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Re: Amazed it took them this long

So what you're saying is your comfort level with technology grounded itself around 2003?

The Rise of The (Coffee) Machines: I need assistance. I think I'm running Windows. Send help

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Ah right. Maybe I should try going to bed a bit earlier one of these days. :)

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How is "Out of disk space" a useless error message?

If you have more than one disk in a machine, I can see how it could be more informative, but if you only have one, it stands perfectly fine as a description of exactly what the problem is. (And even if you did have additional disks, errors like these are usually in response to a user request that the application in question write to a specific file.)

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Re: Windows that won't resize :(

That was fixed quite some time ago.

https://www.ghacks.net/2015/09/22/microsoft-improves-environment-variables-editor-in-latest-windows-10-build/

It detects any environment variable that contains a semicolon delimited list of values and provides a much improved way to edit them.

Eclipse boss claims Visual Studio Code is an open-source poseur – though he would say that, wouldn't he?

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Yes, other tools are available, and yes dedicated tools are generally better than an all-in-one solution. But the convenience of having everything under one roof, so to speak, usually outweighs the limitations of those tools for the average person. Sure, a couple of people on a team might use Intel Analyser, but for a casual inspection by a more general developer who might be a little curious about the performance of something they've just written, the VS profiler is more than adequate. In fact, until you want to start chasing down cache misses and branch prediction failures, 99% of the time it's perfectly fine.

My original point though was that, despite people's ongoing perceptions to the contrary, VS is much more than just a text editor. :)

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I'm not *that* old. :p

My first job was very much based in DOS with the Watcom C compiler and Brief, if I remember correctly. :)

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It depends on the position you're hiring for too. Not all positions that require Visual Studio knowledge are pure programming positions.

It's not uncommon at all in other disciplines that knowledge of the tools you'll be using is a prerequisite. Companies want you to be productive from day one. Knowing someone can get up to speed quickly is very much a deciding factor when selecting potential candidate hires.

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Novice users can edit files, sure.

But can they navigate around the intricacies of all the project settings? Can they effectively debug multiple processes concurrently when one of them is running on a PC in a publisher's office on the other side of the world? Can they connect to a database and efficiently edit table properties? Can they profile GPU usage to discover rendering bottlenecks?

In fact, if you give someone a copy of Visual Studio who's never used it, they generally get lost very quickly. Or manage to fuddle by with the bare minimum and then drop back to whatever other tools they're used to using in the past (which may or may not be a problem depending on licence costs and the budget available for that team). I even used to work with one guy who would use Visual Studio for everything (project management, building, debugging, resource editing) but would alt-tab to a different text editor to make any actual code changes.

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As soon as your students get into the real world though, if they're working as software developers on Windows they're more than likely going to be using Visual Studio. Employers want people who know how to use the tools they use.

In nearly 30 years of working as a software engineer, I don't think I've ever worked somewhere that didn't use Visual Studio. (Post 1995 that is - the DOS years are all a bit of a blur now anyway.) Even the places that were virtually married to Linux (and God forbid Solaris) I still used a Windows laptop with Visual Studio installed for my day to day work.

Visual Studio Code isn't bad as a substitute on Linux, but it doesn't come close to the real Visual Studio.

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Re: But it is quite good!

VSC is worth its weight in gold purely for the debugger integration IMO.

It's no Visual Studio, but it's a hell of a lot better than any other IDE I've used on Linux over the years, and a billion times easier to set up.

OK, so you've air-gapped that PC. Cut the speakers. Covered the LEDs. Disconnected the monitor. Now, about the data-leaking power supply unit...

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Re: Hours???

This Windows 10 PC of mine has been running for a little under 15 days at the time of typing. It won't be restarted until updates are resumed in three weeks time. Most applications I use on a daily basis (Thunderbird, Vivaldi, Visual Studio, et al.) have been running just as long.

GCC 10 gets security bug trap. And look what just fell into it: OpenSSL and a prod-of-death flaw in servers and apps

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Re: Look at valgrind

The SDK should support clang under Linux today. (I haven't tested it on Linux directly, but it has been used on MacOS, iOS, and Android as well as Windows. Might support gcc too. YMMV. If you do encounter any problems, just give me a shout through the contact page on the website and I'll see what I can do to help out.)

So as long as you have a Windows PC you can profile directly from Linux over TCP, or profile to a file and load it on Windows later. I have a friend at Facebook who says they'd be interested in using it too, but they want a Mac port. If I can port it to one other platform, the third will be more straight forward.

It's something I'm slowly working towards doing, but obviously life and real work gets in the way far too often these days, it seems. The main profiler engine and support libraries are fully separated out from the UI already, so it's really just a question of getting those building under clang - partially done already - and finding a UI solution I'm happy with.

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Re: Look at valgrind

<ShamelessPlug>

The Oso Memory Profiler (one of my evenings-and-weekends side projects) can also help track down some memory-related errors.

Out of the box it will flag memory leaks and double frees as errors, but with the ability to add custom attribute data to every memory event and write your own (simple) predicate functions that can use those attributes you can define your own conditions for what constitutes an error as far as memory allocation patterns are concerned.

It's an intrusive profiler, so you will need to build the SDK into your application's memory manager (or if you don't have a memory manager (and why not?!) use the bundled new & delete operators if you're working in C++). The choice to make the profiler intrusive was decided a long time ago when I realised I wanted detailed information more than the same bland top-level overview most profilers provide.

By a happy coincidence, I just so happened to release a new version this afternoon. :)

More information and a free trial version can be found on my company's website: https://osocorporation.com/memoryprofiler/index.php

Happy profiling. (And if profiling isn't your thing, have a few beers and a good weekend.) :)

Florida man might just stick it to HP for injecting sneaky DRM update into his printers that rejected non-HP ink

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Re: HP printers

There is an option to disable printer downloading updates automatically.

Not on my HP printer there isn't.

(Or if there is, it's so well hidden I can't find it. I haven't checked in the old basement lavatories yet though.)

Microsoft decrees that all high-school IT teachers were wrong: Double spaces now flagged as typos in Word

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Re: I don't know what you Brits got taught at school

Brit here. On one of the random days I actually bothered turning up for school, I appear to have absorbed the understanding that two spaces after a full stop was the done thing.

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Re: It may be a US "standard", but...

...but legibility still applies... This can make it easier to understand.

Too bad this sentiment hasn't made it into the open source community yet. (Or most companies for that matter.)

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Joke

Two spaces?

I think it should be one tab.

Vivaldi browser to perform a symphony of ad and tracker blocking with version 3.0

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Re: Vivaldi is great

The Tree Tabs (I don't remember the exact name) extension for Firefox was better, but it's impossible to enable it now without also having the standard tabs across the top of the window. Which is monumentally retarded.

Vivaldi's side tabs are ok, but still quite annoying at times. (Trying to actually find the single pixel line to stack a tab is irritating as hell, and the whole concept of tab stacking leaves much to be desired - especially when you're trying to find a tab again.)

Grab your Bitcoin while you can because Purse.io is shutting up shop in June and you could lose the lot

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Re: Volatility?

and I have direct experience of some of the tracing

From which side? :)

Started from the bottom, now we're near: 16 years on, open-source vector graphics editor Inkscape draws close to v1.0

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Re: Should move to Qt

That's basically the problem of every cross platform UI engine out there. They mimic the look of the host but neglect the actual workings.

A Qt application doesn't feel (or look if I'm being honest) like a native application on Windows anymore than it does on Mac. In fact, Qt couldn't be less native under the hood if it tried. They do everything themselves and only provide host native handles when they really have to.

The editor for the UI engine I wrote for a game back in the mid 90s basically did the same thing. Each game window when being edited appeared to be fully integrated into the Windows desktop. Which it basically did by just being a borderless/titlebarless window that I rendered everything into myself. Add in a bit of cunning to fool the OS into thinking my widgets were OS widgets, and the user could interact with it as if it were a real window. It was a pretty cool effect at the time. (If I do say so myself.) :)

Linux fans thrown a bone in one Windows 10 build while Peppa Pig may fly if another is ready in time for this year

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Re: Linux developers

Perhaps he is missing the fun of searching for drivers on various dodgy 3rd party pages whenever he wants to use any hardware that the manufacturer cannot be bothered to support...

Not sure (s)he would be missing that experience. That's pretty much the dictionary definition of "running Linux".

Google tests hiding Chrome extension icons by default, developers definitely not amused by the change

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Re: Now avoiding Chrome everywhere

Google are not now, nor have ever been a software publisher.

They are a personal information slurping ad slinger. Always have been, always will be.

If they hadn't built their offices on top of a mountain of cash, their mediocre software offerings would have disappeared a long time ago.

Not only is Zoom's strong end-to-end encryption not actually end-to-end, its encryption isn't even that strong

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Re: Citizen Lab's visual demonstration of AES-ECB encrypting an image.

Yes, it was.

But where's the repetition in a video stream? Variable size file fragments containing variable size samples broken down into a variable number of variable size blocks.

Even a TS stream packet is 188 bytes in size, so you'd need four of them before you might start to see some repetition from the variable size packet headers, but I'm still not convinced that that would tell you anything about the data contained within.

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Re: People don't buy encryption

Comparison to what? Are you a collector? ;)

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Re: People don't buy encryption

The massive shit my dog did in the garden earlier puts Skype to shame. The bar isn't particularly high. :)

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Re: Citizen Lab's visual demonstration of AES-ECB encrypting an image.

I made no specific point about ECB. I was merely pointing out that the example given for the context in question isn't particularly realistic.

Not using ECB should be a no-brainer. Sadly, "engineers" (Read: Copy'n'Paste Cowboys) these days tend to share what few brain cells they have via Stack Overflow.

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Re: Citizen Lab's visual demonstration of AES-ECB encrypting an image.

That example's kinda bullshit. At least for video.

While the example stands for raw bitmap images, video streams don't contain every frame as a raw image. Even key frames aren't stored as plain images like that.

Additionally, encryption on a video stream can be implemented at different levels. Either at the file level where the entire file fragment (MP4, TS, MKV, etc) is encrypted, or at the stream level where sample data within the file is encrypted. Add in the potential multiplexing of audio and video samples within the stream, and the chances of you being able to pick out intelligible imagery is pretty slim.

I'm not saying it's impossible, but given any random video stream, I'd be very surprised if you could make anything out.

Official tailored Swift for Windows support promised in 5.3

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Why bother?

I doubt 99% of Windows developers will even notice or care, and those that do will have a similar experience to developers on Apple platforms: I.e., language features changing so often it's impossible to keep up, and you can't stick with a single version for too long either because the surrounding tools obsolete older versions just as quickly.

So far Swift has had 29 releases in five years. Compare that to the nine releases of C# in 20 years. Even the rapid release schedule of C++ is out of control with features being deprecated and replaced more often than I care to count. Instead of jumping on the bullshit release-often bandwagon, can language developers actually starting thinking about things for more than 30 seconds before implementing them so we can have languages and libraries that are actually designed properly and are more useful than annoying?

</rant> :)

Remember that clinical trial, promoted by President Trump, of a possible COVID-19 cure? So, so, so many questions...

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Re: Ventilators: "You need millions of them, tens of millions..."

In Italy, Covid-19 patients have been spending on average over two weeks in intensive care units.

Collabora working on making any DirectX 12 driver able to support open graphics and parallel programming APIs

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Re: Does not matter

No, not really.

Vulkan is going to be the only graphics API on Android in a few years time. DirectX will remain as the only real choice on Windows and Xbox. Apple platforms have Metal. The three games that are released on Linux every year can use either OpenGL (which is garbage) or Vulkan. Nobody will really notice or care either way. Nintendo and Sony will continue to do their own thing like they always have.

But you're right that it doesn't matter. 95% of game developers use either Unity or Unreal Engine, and most couldn't care less about the graphics API being used as long as it works.

Forget about those pesky closures, Windows 10 has an important message for you

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Re: "not giving Windows 10 enough headroom"

Not sure what you're doing there then. What else do you have installed on that VM?

According to TreeSize, the top five folders (in fact the only folders of significant size) on the system drive of my main work PC at home (with Windows 10 1909) are:

16.3GB - Users (Including >2GB of Vivaldi cache, and 1.3GB of emails.)

16.2GB - Windows

12.6GB - Program Files (x86) (over half of which is Visual Studio 2019 and the Windows SDK).

10.7GB - Program Files

7.1GB - ProgramData

Plus a 16GB page file.

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Re: "not giving Windows 10 enough headroom"

Windows will remove old files and update-related downloads after a month. The time delay for the former is so that any unforeseen problems can be easily rolled back, and so that updates can be shared among other PCs on the network for the latter.

If you don't want to wait, you can always run disk-cleanup manually.

It's time to track people's smartphones to ensure they self-isolate during this global pandemic, says WHO boffin

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Re: Huge opportunity

...normal people can't be trusted to have any common sense...

Sadly, I haven't seen any news recently that contradicts that. Have you?

Forget toilet roll, bandwidth is the new ration: Amazon, YouTube also degrade video in Europe to keep 'net running amid coronavirus crunch

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Re: Excuse me...

They’re called shops. Duh.

Google halts Chrome, Chrome OS releases to avoid shipping flawed code, prioritizes security fixes amid coronavirus crunch

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"To avoid shipping flawed code"

A bit late for that, I feel.

Come to Malmö for St Peter's. Stay for the Bork

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Re: We'd order in from a Triangeln retailer called Döner Kebab

So more traditional then. Sounds good to me. ;)

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Sending in pictures of crashed Windows computers these days is on about the same level as trainspotting.

It was funny the first time, you know, back in 1995. Not so much these days.

(A down vote means you're triggered enough to agree with me.) ;)

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