* Posts by Detective Emil

373 publicly visible posts • joined 10 Feb 2010


AMD slaps together a silicon sandwich with MI300-series APUs, GPUs to challenge Nvidia’s AI empire

Detective Emil

How much?

The article supplies a satisfyingly large number of numbers (including TDP, which was as elevated as I thought it would be), but not price. I expect this to be very elevated.

Meta sued by privacy group over pay up or click OK model

Detective Emil

Better to subscribe to noyb.eu …

You could be an over-enthusiastic Gold Supporting Member for what FB wants. (Baser metals come cheaper.)

Or just lob them a bung from time to time, which requires you to give them almost no personal data.

Will anybody save Linux on Itanium? Absolutely not

Detective Emil

Once I've got through LotR again …

… I must cue up HHG. Have one of these for slipping in the references -->

Google dragged to UK watchdog over Chrome's upcoming IP address cloaking

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

“… turning off a number of campaigns …"

Sounds good to me.

You've just spent $400 on a baby monitor. Now you need a subscription

Detective Emil

Spelling correction?

Today's tale concerns the Miku Baby Monitor …

Shouldn't that be Milku?

Activist investor to GoDaddy: Cut costs, improve sales, or sell

Detective Emil

Re: Sorry guys...

… you would find one that seems great and feel confident that you had something, but … they always change for the worse eventually.

Yes, they're in that particular service-provider category that includes dry cleaners, car-hire companies and airlines.

If you like to play along with the illusion of privacy, smart devices are a dumb idea

Detective Emil


I think my next TV’s going to a nice big gaming monitor. Meanwhile, my LG’s name service is mediated by PiHole, and I have no apps installed on it. Well, apart from the shovelware that can’t be deleted. (They’re on my Apple TV, which some might say is overpriced, while others might counter that one’s ponying cash up front to replace what would otherwise have to be squeezed out of surveillance later.)

FTC pulls emergency brake on Microsoft's marriage to Activision Blizzard

Detective Emil

Lost business report

These shenanigans have made me very reluctant to buy through Amazon, although sometimes (see other accusations by cartels offices) they're the only source, so there's no alternative.

Why can't Nvidia boss Jensen Huang escape the Uncanny Valley that makes AI feel icky?

Detective Emil

Mr. Cool

Huang did all this wearing that same leather jacket he incongruously wore in Taipei's summer evening heat, and which appeared not to discomfort him during two hours spent under stage lights.

Well, Nvidia has to know a lot about keeping things cool, given the insane power draw of its products.

Mine's the smoking jacket with dry ice in the pockets.

Watchdog calls for automatic braking to be standard in cars

Detective Emil

This is not the solution

The US' road fatalities figures are pretty appalling compared to other "first world" nations: substitute the nation of you choice into this Wolfram Alpha query to check. This measure addresses maybe 5% of the total. Fixing the problem will require a lot more money and education (which also costs money).

Get ready for Team America: AI Police

Detective Emil

Not the best role model

Team America: World Police [imdb] is the best marionette feature film out there (and definitely nsfw). Let's hope for a bit more competence and less mayhem from this Strategic Plan.

Microsoft Azure CTO believes confidential computing is the future of targeted advertising

Detective Emil
Big Brother

About that "data clean room"

Would it be numbered 101, by any chance?

You'll [BZZ] like Intel’s [BZZ] NUC 13 Pro once the fan [BZZ] stops blowing

Detective Emil

Additional gloss

A link (maybe this one?) and a price would be useful. After a bit of clicking around, it seems to be a spot more than £1,000 as configured. At that price, an M2 Mac mini configured with 16GB is a serious competitor. Connectivity's comparable, except that Ethernet is just 1Gb by default (~£100 to upgrade to 10G); performance is comparable, too; it's double the weight, because of its aluminium case and NO POWER BRICK; and you'll never hear the fan. If you want to, you can run (ARM) Windows or Linux in a VM quite satisfactorily, although running Linux on the bare metal is currently an exercise only for the committed.

Intel to rebrand client chips once Meteor Lake splashes down

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

Sounds great!

This means I can run Windows on my Apple M1 Ultra.

Oh, wait …

Tencent Cloud says it's mass producing custom video chips

Detective Emil

Chinese copy

YouTube/Google was doing just this a couple of years ago. [Ars Technica: I don't think El Reg covered this story.]

South Korea fines Google $32M for using market power to stymie rival app store

Detective Emil

Well, at least …

Google hasn't said "We take x very seriously" in response to this finding. Possibly because it doesn't.

Ex-politico turned Meta hype man brands Metaverse 'new heart of computing'

Detective Emil


The avatar created for the Meta exec was seated at a virtual wooden table dressed in a virtual blue blazer and white collared shirt …

I thought that this was going to be an April Fool that finished by reporting that the meeting was brought to an abrupt end by a software bug that made the virtual Clegg's nose grow ever longer, making reporters duck and swerve to avoid it.

Mine's the one with the enormous spare batteries in the pockets.

Amazon opens its ad-hoc Wi-Fi-sipping Sidewalk mesh to all manner of gadgets

Detective Emil

Hold on: I need a bell, a book and a candle

Ah, it's OK: I can buy them all on Amazon.

UNIX co-creator Ken Thompson is a… what user now?

Detective Emil

Only slightly off-topic

May I recommend Brian W Kernighan's self-published UNIX: A History and a Memoir (ISBN 978-1695978553)? It's an easy read with no shocking revelations, but it's good to hear it from a deity,

Seeing as GPT-3 is great at faking info, you should lean into that, says Microsoft

Detective Emil

Postel's law? Never heard of it.

Be conservative in what you send, be liberal in what you accept. [Wikipedia]

Software tested only on "clean" input (however produced) is going to fall flat on its face when exposed to what the real world has to offer — particularly if it's intentionally adversarial, the current fun game in AI-baiting.

Used EV car batteries find new life storing solar power in California

Detective Emil

Nonstandard units

So it's enough to supply power to a couple of hundred homes. For how long, pray?

Your standards converter provides no answer.

What happens when you host code and git clone turns into a DDoS? Let's ask SourceHut

Detective Emil

Google's entitlements

So, if "[disabling] automated refresh traffic from proxy.golang.org … for SourceHut … should have little to no impact on users", why's it needed for anybody, ever?

AI lawyer to fight first legal case in court, startup claims

Detective Emil

Yet another application fo AI

I wonder if DoNotPay has an AI running its PR based on ploys that have garnered unmerited coverage in the past.

Of course U2 is one of Bill Gates' favorite bands

Detective Emil

I’m not sure that I’ve yet got over U2 violating [CBS News] my iTunes library.

Non-binary DDR5 is finally coming to save your wallet

Detective Emil

Apple is testing 24GB stacks. Maybe.

Recently-posted escaped benchmarks [Tom's Guide] suggest that Apple is trying out 4x24GB stacks in its purported M2 Max package.

Crypto craziness craps out – and about time too

Detective Emil

Re: Klaxons and Flashing Red Lights

When the graphic at the top of a Financial Times article, What this year in crypto has taught us [paywalled], is a fly-buzzing pile of shit, one has to take notice

Elon Musk to step down as Twitter CEO: Help us pick his replacement

Detective Emil

As a latecomer, thre's only one thing left I can say …

To summarise: it is a well known fact that those people who most want to rule people are, ipso facto, those least suited to do it. To summarise the summary: anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job. To summarise the summary of the summary: people are a problem. — Douglas Adams

Brit MPs pour cold water on hydrogen as mass replacement for fossil fuels

Detective Emil

It could be done … but should it?

A long time ago, I had a rather well-paying summer job putting bodies on the fleet of trucks needed for the job of converting London from town/coal to natural/north sea gas. So the conversion could be done. Whether it should is a matter for heated (carbon-neutrally, natch) debate.

ChatGPT has mastered the confidence trick, and that's a terrible look for AI

Detective Emil

We interrupt these comments to bring you this commercial message

Don’t know what Dunning-Kruger is? There’s a tee shirt just for you. [NewsThump, from which I get no commission…]

Not all vendors' Arm-powered kit is created equally, benchmark fan finds

Detective Emil

Re: Apples and pears

Apple has put the Arm ISA back in that position. (That is, of outclassing allcomers.)

Trouble is, A and M series chips are not available on the merchant market, and nobody else yet has anything close — not even with the ARM ISA. Much publicised defections of Apple architects and engineers are touted as allowing chip vendors to catch up, but the best I've seen promised is the end of 2023 — and that's probably predicated on Arm losing a licensing dispute in which it seems to have a strong case.

Also, the literature about reverse-engineering the M1 shows that Apple has put up as many road-blocks as it can by patenting its speed-ups from here to kingdom come — although this is a game everyboy plays.

In short, don't hold your breath.

Killing trees with lasers isn’t cool, says Epson. So why are inkjets any better?

Detective Emil

'There's just you, paper and ink'

An alternative point of view [Irish Times video]

Twitter tries to lure brands back with spend-matching scheme

Detective Emil

What an attractive offer!

If you pay to place one ad next to possibly-brand-destroying content, we'll place snother next to different possibly-brand-destroying content fo free!

UK cuts China from Sizewell nuclear project, takes joint stake

Detective Emil

How many homes was that, again?

I'm getting tired of these "enough to power x homes. figures. This article reckons that a home uses only 325W. Here's another where it works out to 1.4kW. And a third, with a not-very-believable 10kW.

What's needed is an El Reg unit for power, an area where the Reg online standards converter is sadly lacking. May I suggest that energy be reckoned in how many olympic-sized swimming pools it could boil (assuming a capacity of 2.5Ml and a starting temperature of 25°C), and power in terms of how fast it could boil such a pool? The calculation is left as an exercise for the reader* (and for Reg hacks in future filings) …

* The back of my envelope seems to have developed a fault.

Telecoms networks could provide next-gen GPS services without the need for satellites

Detective Emil


Back to the good old wartime Decca Navigator. Still, if it works, why not?

On a related topic, whatever happened to the much-derided eLORAN? [El Reg] Maybe all its remaining proponents are in rest homes by now.

Epson zaps lasers into oblivion, in the name of the environment

Detective Emil

In Epson's defence (although half-heartedly)

I have had a mid-range Epson all-in-one for four years or so, and in home service, with long periods of non-use, it has never blocked/dried out. It's also still supported, in that firmware updates keep arriving — although what they do is anyone's guess. I think respondents who have had bad experiences in the past (including me) may find the current crop of ink-jet printers less frustrating. On the other hand, the ink prices … (Epson would say "Buy one with tanks, then", with a chorus intoning "green, green, greeny green" in the background.)

All that said, my default printer in an aged Brother colour laser, which indeed produces damp-resistant results, and is much faster for full-duplex output.

GPU shipments saw biggest nosedive since noughties recession

Detective Emil

Straw in the wind or drop in the bucket?

The JPR report makes no mention of Apple integrated GPUs, which have displaced a lot of Intel IGPUs and a few AMD DGPUs from Macs sold over the past couple of years. How significant this is, I have no idea.

HPC's lost histories will power the future of tech

Detective Emil

Supporting material

Here's a time-lapse of a rotting peach [YouTube]. Takes a lot longer to slump than FTX.

tsoHost pulls plug on Gridhost service with just 45 days' notice

Detective Emil

Qualcomm: Arm threatens to end CPU licensing, charge device makers instead

Detective Emil

This is all very well,and good, but …

… what's it got to do with the current contractual issue?

If you've got a weak case, bluster.

SpaceX reportedly fed up with providing free Starlink to Ukraine

Detective Emil

Re: Something missing in the math

Not to defend Mr. Musk in any way, but an initial estimate of the manufacturing cost of Starlink terminals was on the order of $2,000 ["Insider"], which would make the math work better. Well, at least for year one.

Delta Air Lines throws $60m at flying taxi startup Joby Aviation

Detective Emil

Having reduced delays in getting to the airport …

… the next job will be to reduce delays at the airport.

Elon Musk tells Twitter: My takeover deal is back on

Detective Emil

I'm late to this party, and won't be staying

Any story in my RSS feeds that has "Musk" in the headline gets junked. I'm not about to change that policy.

Mine's the one with the legal-in-some-jurisdictions herbal aroma.

Digital Ocean dumps Mailchimp after attack leaked customer email addresses

Detective Emil

Where's the sign-of-the-cross icon?

Run a mile from anything MailChimp sends: every link and image is booby-trapped to send who knows what analytics to who knows where for some nefarious purpose.

Hope Digital Ocean's new supplier is less nosey.

Chromebooks are here to stay thanks to COVID, even though shipments crashed: IDC

Detective Emil

Are we talking about _this_ IDC?

Nokia deal to 'rocket Windows Phone 7 past iPhone' [El Reg].

Tbf, they did later recant [El Reg again]. Let's hope for the same on Chromebooks.

Why the end of Optane is bad news for all IT

Detective Emil


From Wikipedia:

JVC, which designed the VHS technology, licensed it to any manufacturer that was interested. The manufacturers then competed against each other for sales, resulting in lower prices to the consumer. Sony was the only manufacturer of Betamax initially, and so was not pressured to reduce prices. Only in the early 1980s did Sony decide to license Betamax to other manufacturers, such as Toshiba and Sanyo.

The only source you're able to buy those Optane DIMMs from is Intel or (formerly) close bedfellow Micron, and the only processors you have ever been able to use them with are made by Intel.

Psst … Want to buy a used IBM Selectric? No questions asked

Detective Emil

Re: Wow

Wanting to relive my youth, I'm just having the caps and rubber bits in my 70s-vintage Yamaha TC-800 cassette deck replaced.

Why Intel killed its Optane memory business

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Alternate history

I've wondered whether, if Intel & Micron had widely licensed the technolgy & process early, rather than keeping them resolutely proprietary, the price would have come down and the performance would have gone up to make it more attractive. But Intel's good at hubris. Or maybe they touted if for licensing, but found no takers. If that's the case, prospective licensees must now be patting themselves on the back.

Meta proposes doing away with leap seconds

Detective Emil
Big Brother

Planets are different outside the Meta-verse:

Their timekeeping is peskily imperfect. I'm for accommodating the one we've got, rather than moving to perfect planet Zuck.

Browsers could face two regimes in Europe as UK law set to diverge from EU

Detective Emil

And nothing of value was achieved …

[W]ebsites won't need to require users to consent to "collect information for statistical purposes" about how a website or service is used "with a view to making improvements to the website".

Since most sites want to drop cookies associated with advertising and tracking, if the law really is written this narrowly, all those sites will still have to present consent dialogs.

Linux Mint 21 hits beta, and it's looking fresh

Detective Emil

To be fair to systemd …

… to whose defense I'm not usually inclined to leap, the out-of-memory daemon can cause problems in any stressed Linux distribution. It looks as if the problem was that the default parameters that Debian used made it too aggressive. Been there, cured that. Imo, it would have been better for Mint to choose less trigger-happy defaults, rather than leaving out the subsystem altogether.