* Posts by kurkosdr

59 publicly visible posts • joined 20 Jun 2010


Time Lords decree an end to leap seconds before risky attempt to reverse time


Re: Cop Out

Because French was the de facto international standard language when those organizations were founded.

GlobalFoundries cuts jobs to slash operating costs


GlobalFoundries is a widgets manufacturer now, being stuck at 12nm lithography and without any plans to develop a new process node (they abandoned their plans for 7nm in 2018). This means that GlobalFoundries isn't much different from a spoon manufacturer in the business sense now. This means that:

1) They may not be able to produce the chips there is a shortage (demand) for

2) They don't need that many people to do R&D

3) They have to be ruthless about costs since the products they produce grow less premium every year. They make some money via specialized 12nm nodes, but that will be eventually exhausted too.

Linus Torvalds's faulty memory (RAM, not wetware) slows kernel development



What's this weird obsession Linuxeros have with Macbooks? I understand why they'd want to have an Intel Macbook (Linux-friendly hardware with open-source drivers), but the new Apple Silicon Macbooks are actually hostile to Linux and only support MacOS. Is it some kind of status symbol I don't get?

Only Microsoft can give open source the gift of NTFS. Only Microsoft needs to


Microsoft will not open-source NTFS because:

1) It's a complicated set of code, which means they have to put effort into writing the Linux kernel driver


2) They will have to commit to a stable specification. Without committing to a stable specification, they can make changes to it such as expanding it etc and it's the job of Linux kernel maintainers to catch up.

Just use exFat for your external drives. NTFS was never meant for external drives anyway.

Fujitsu confirms end date for mainframe and Unix systems


At the end of the day, all proprietary software has an EOL date.

Maybe there is something to be said here about relying on a proprietary software stack (that the vendor can EOL anytime) for your business needs.

In the consumer sector, Apple can sell customers a Power Mac in spring of 2005, announce a switch to Intel during the summer of that same year, and then proceed to completely screw PowerPC users over a mere 4 years later with Snow Leopard, and it's just how things are done in the consumer sector (current Intel Mac users are about to get the same treatment). Similarly, Nvidia can sell RTX 20 series graphics cards with 3D Vision support to customers interested in stereoscopy in 2018 and then proceed to completely screw them over in 2021 by EOL'ing 3D Vision from new drivers. Again, that's all expected in the consumer sector.

But when your business relies on a software stack and "transitions" cost money and man-hours, you can't have any of that.

And this also goes to you fancy people in "smart casual" jeans building apps on "serverless" / "app engine" clouds that are near-impossible to port to other "serverless" / "app engine" clouds, not just suits buying mainframes from Fujitsu. Long story short, don't do it unless you absolutely have to.

Have you tried using docker containers managed by Kubernetes?


Re: The Cloud does not replace a mainframe.

You are aware that security vulnerabilities mean a kernel is badly, badly broken, right?

Why your external monitor looks awful on Arm-based Macs, the open source fix – and the guy who wrote it


IMO Apple has lost the high ground when it comes to software. Tim Cook is a hardware guy, so he presumably pushes the company more towards hardware development. Sure, this has given us some impressive Apple hardware, but the software is suffering.

The fact that Apple fans make blog posts complaining about the state of Apple software is telling. Just search for "apple don't order the fish" and "apple has lost the functional high-ground" to see what I mean.

Which is a pity, because attention to software was what used to set Apple apart from the rest. Competing on hardware isn't that much of a differentiator, because the rest tend to catch up.


Re: Buy that person a beer!

A company doesn't have to have its tongue up the arse of the US film industry to support HDCP. If you want your device to play premium content in 1080p or higher, it needs to support HDCP. It's why Desktop Linux only does Netflix up to720p.

Yes, an OS could switch between HDCP and non-HDCP, but most devices just enable HDCP when the device is connected to avoid making a non-seamless switch when they have to play premium content.

Apple's Safari browser runs the risk of becoming the new Internet Explorer – holding the web back for everyone



Funny thing is that Internet Explorer 6 shouldn't exist after 2007, when Microsoft released Internet Explorer 7 as an update for WIndows XP. But back then, connections were slow in most of the world and people avoided upgrading, and Microsoft had the stupid idea of bundling WGA with Windows updates, so that's how we ended with Internet Explorer 6 being what most people recognized as Windows XP's browser.

LibreOffice 7.2 release candidate reveals effort to be Microsoft-compatible


Re: "improve import and export compatibility with Microsoft Office"

I don't blame Microsoft for coming up with their own format. To quote Joel Spolsky, "A file format is a concise summary of all the features an application supports [...] They have to reflect all the complexity of the applications. Every checkbox, every formatting option, and every feature in Microsoft Office has to be represented in file formats somewhere. That checkbox in Word’s paragraph menu called “Keep With Next” that causes a paragraph to be moved to the next page if necessary so that it’s on the same page as the paragraph after it? That has to be in the file format."

Microsoft would never, ever allow a standards committee to decide the makeup of Microsoft Office's default editable formats, because then they are locked out of adding new features to Microsoft Office. If an open format becomes mandatory, they will immediately extend it (they are kind of doing that with ODF). Just like Adobe will never, ever allow a standards committee to decide the makeup of PSD. They are fine with committees deciding on "export" formats such as PDF and JPG respectively (where things can be flattened into a bitmap and fixed in place), but not with the editable format.

Where Microsoft gets the blame is for not giving us a clear spec. Yes, I agree, that was a calculated move to lock out competitors, and shame on ISO for approving their horrible spec.


Re: Reveal Codes RIP

Every company the size of Microsoft has an interest in pushing trends in the direction they want them to go. For example, back in the 90s, Microsoft wanted information delivered via MSN and Windows apps (and not via the browser) because that's where they had their monopoly (in the win32 API). The fact they lost the battle (thankfully) doesn't mean they didn't know that the browser was a much better idea, they just lost the battle. Similarly, when they introduced ActiveX in Internet Explorer to tie the web to COM and OLE (and by extension to Windows) it's not that they didn't know it was a bad idea, it was a strategic decision to see if they could tie the web to Windows. Come the mid-2000s, and when tried introducing WinFS into Windows, it's not that they didn't know a relational-database filesystem was a silly thing to have in an OS (when SQLite is a thing) or that a relational-database filesystem would open a ton of security issues, it was a calculated move to create more work for Wine, which was catching up to Windows XP. Eventually, they introduced so many new APIs with Vista that indeed Wine was slowed down. So, they kept alive the trend of having Windows be the OS you really want on the desktop and laptop if you want Windows apps.

Google has created its own trends, for example the trend of syncing data by having everything online. Instead, Microsoft would have preferred if you used Windows Mobile Sync center or whatever it was called and sync things locally by plugging your Windows CE/WIndows Mobile device and your MP3 into your computer, turning Windows into the center of your data.

Trends? We will try and make some of those.

Must 'completely free' mean 'hard to install'? Newbie gripe sparks some soul-searching among Debian community


Re: Sorry, but no

Oh please, tell me how I can achieve parallelism in init.d as easily as defining a systemd service file, with dependencies that may have dependencies of their own taken care for me automatically (please don't try weasel out of that last requirement). I am expecting a step-by-step guide, and I shouldn't have to write more than 10 lines of definitions, because that's how long my systemd service files are.

As a DevOps person, the satisfaction of going to a Springboot developer and saying "here is a 10-line file you have to provide in your RPM, as you can see, it all makes sense intuitively and doesn't require any knowledge of that arcane language known as Bash only we DevOps people know to understand it, and also has no PID locks" is immeasurable. And it's all delivered by a big corporation, it's not someone's tiny little hack on top of init.d that might not exist tomorrow. The company I joined some years ago had already made centos7 a requirement just to get Systemd functionality. Good. Welcome Systemd.

PS: init.d was a bad idea from the get-go. The idea that you mix service declaration and application startup logic was a bad idea. Because anyone who wants to parse your service defintion has to understand the logic ("does he use PIDs to track service state or something else?"). If Windows was doing that, we'd be saying how bad it all is.

PPS: Google "r/archlinux Why did ArchLinux embrace Systemd?" and see it from the perspective of the distro maintainer too.


Re: Not for noobs @kurkosdr

It was a standard Windows 8.1 x86 ISO, nothing Acer-specific whatsoever. Generally, it's a pattern Windows has mastered very well: Get the user going with a GUI and networking support, and then use Windows Update to download additional drivers. It's why the standard Windows ISO includes so many networking drivers Also, Windows maintains driver back compat between Windows NT versions, so drivers from Vista and 7 will work (you may have to get them from the manufacturer's website, most recent version obviously). And with Windows 10, Microsoft forces manufacturers to put all their drivers in Windows Update for new laptops. This is called progress.

BTW the issue with Broadcom drivers in Linux is why every OS needs to have a utility to find and add drivers. I shouldn't have to type dpkg commands.


Re: "Drivers" me mad...

Ah yes, the eternal problem of XP not having bundled SATA drivers, with Microsoft not being able to fix it because the CD-ROM had already shipped (back in 2001). It was fixed in Windows Vista and Windows 7 about 13 years ago, so the pain is now gone. Now imagine that little driver problem expanded to your WiFi chip and your graphics card, and not being solved, and you have Desktop Linux.


Re: Not for noobs

Haha, no. In my Acer Aspire One netbook (ironically designed to run Linux) I had to manually install a driver for the Broadcom Wifi using obscure dpkg commands. Windows had the required driver bundled. Also, Windows always finds an accelerated GPU driver for your graphics card the moment it connects to the internet. Every Desktop Linux distro I've tried makes no attempt to find an accelerated driver if the required driver happens to be proprietary, so if you have an Nvidia or AMD graphics card, it will default to unaccelerated 1024x768, drawing pixels on the screen one at a time using the CPU like a peasant, without any indication that you should probably install an accelerated driver.

Dear distro devs: Either go the Apple/Android way and make system-specific images or go the Windows way and discover drivers automatically, at least for common hardware. Nobody cares about your "purity".


Good luck changing the mind of a Unix weenie errr... Veteran Unix Admin. They have their init.d scripts from 1994, and they want computers to keep booting processes one at a time (like a Pentium 4 PC) and of course do it by running arcane bash scripts. Oh, and using PID lock files to track service state. The idea that you can declaratively define a process and its dependencies and let a system daemon do the rest for you is alien to them. The idea that service files should not contain random bash logic is also alien to them. They are the same people who think array bounds checking and garbage collection in programming languages are superfluous.

But , fortunately for the rest of us, Red Hat and Canonical have money to make, and they need a way to reliably track services on a Linux system (as Windows NT has done since forever) so those Veteran Unix Admins should either learn systemd or retire for good.

Fancy some fishy-chips? Just order one of these sensors: Research shines light on suspect component sources


Re: Not counterfeit, not stolen

I think the problem was that people were conned into thinking they were buying a new chip from the original manufacturer but ended up buying a clone or used chip (or both?). Let me be clear on this: No Amazon or eBay seller will miss the opportunity to flip a clone or used chip as "new and from original manufacturer" if it bumps the price by a dozen quid or so. There is no real punishment from doing so. If possible, buy directly from the manufacturer or directly from Amazon (not "fullfilled by Amazon").


Re: "mainly from Chinese websites"

Not to say that many "UK sellers" in Amazon, eBay and NewEgg are simply fronts for Chinese sellers (read: repackagers of used or stolen electronics as new, or peddlers of counterfeit chips). Some of them will even list addresses of UK shipping warehouses or invalid addresses (most people won't check). Not to say that a valid UK address means valid sellers, the front is much better camouflaged.


If it's not shipped directly from the manufacturer or directly from Amazon (and not "fulfilled by Amazon", that's a different thing) assume it's a fake or used item. There is an entire industry both when it comes to counterfeiting electronics and when it comes to recycling a used (or even stolen) electronics to "new" status. I had supposedly "new" and "factory sealed" HTC One M8 phones ship with a Windows Mobile manual from an HD2 (all of them from high-rated Amazon sellers and fullfilled by Amazon). There is an entire industry when it comes to re-selling old sound card chips and old RAM modules and cloning them (but selling them as geuine made from Yamaha or Samsung accordingly).

It's also why so many Chinese phone resellers are butthurt from a recent Apple decision which closed a loophole which allowed iPhones to have their device lock removed by entering service mode, because it makes it harder to flip stolen iPhones as refurbs or even new. You see, it's easy to ask the legitimate owner for the unlock code but very hard if his iPhone was stolen from them.

Very little helps: Tesco flashes ancient Windows desktop on Scan-As-You-Shop device


I never understood why a purpose-built device like a Symbol scanner has to crash to desktop when the app crashes... If you want to use a general-purpose OS, at least do it properly.

Hell hath GNOME fury: Linux desktop org swings ax at patent troll's infringement claim


If everyone was doing this, patent trolls wouldn't exist. The fear of the patent troll is that someone will go to court and invalidate their patent, and then the parent troll won't be able to assert it against anyone. Even Microsoft show some of their VFAT patents (long a boogeyman Microsoft used to assert against everyone) get invalidated in court, and these software patents had more validity in them than the vast majority of software patents the trolls hold.

Microsoft's AI is so good it steered Renault into bottom of the F1 league


Re: It'll never work

Every OS needs to reboot to apply OS updates, because no modern OS can replace code running in-memory (they can replace code on disk), so a reboot is the only way to not have existing running processes running old code.

To give you a sense of what a massive undertaking a no-reboot OS would be, if the OS is executing such instruction in the program text with such state, the update has to provide a way to go to the equivalent instruction in the new program text and a way to convert state.

The problem with Windows is that reboots take so long, that they are practically holding the system hostage (for 15 minutes or so). When the Windows 8.1 update rolled, I clocked a full 35 mins of downtime on some systems (for an update marked as important).

But anyway, I am sure Renault has at least a pair of systems, and they run them in a highly available fashion aka when one is rebooting, the other is still up.

You're inventing the wrong sort of tech for bad people who want to buy it. Stop it at once


Why should Silicon Valley care about the 2 billion additional people the natalists brought to the world just because their religion says so, knowing beforehand they don't have the resources to feed so many children?

Phrases like "there are X billion people without Y" are encouraging the natalists. It's subconsiously imposing the ethical imperative that parental responsibility should be "shared" globally, as if the world is one giant family.

Oh, and by "natalists", I mean all of them. Sunni Islamists, Quiverfull Chrisitans, whatever natalist movement Buddists have, everyone.

Watch out, Yahoo! EFF looses BADGER on sites that ignore Do Not Track


The deal with cookies

I never understood the deal with cookies. Why do browsers accept them by default? Normally, there would be an "allow cookies from this site" button in the bottom right (and that only for the purpose of allowing the site to remember log-ins).

I blame netscape, which presented an ugly popup window (that interrupted your browsing), everytime a site wanted to set a cookie, so most users just set their browser to "allow all", so this became the "standard behaviour".

Google wearables: A solution looking for a rich nerd

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"but they are handy for lazy people such as myself."

I like how people are willing to change their existing garage-door controller to and invest on a device that will need frequent charging, just because they are too lazy to pick-up their garage door remote.

This is like Google Wallet (the thing that was intended to replace credit cards). Google wants to take something that never breaks and doesn't need frequent recharging, and replace it with something that has limited battery life and is expensive.

The good thing smartphone manufacturers did is that they took stuff that was already expensive and had limited battery life (Mp3 player, PDA, cellphone), and combined them in one device.

PS: Anyway, this thing will get you geek bragging rights. People will look at you at the pub. That's the good thing about it.

Reg tries out Google's Chromecast: Yep, we even tested smut sites



"You’ll have to do battle with pop-ups though. "

AdBlock people! And no, I don't care if websites need to make money. Either host your own ads, or find an ad server that won't serve pop-ups or malware.

PS: No interest for the Chromecast if it can't mirror tabs or play local files properly, the good news is some chinese vendor can take the same chip and build an ultra-cheap 1080p player

Down with Unicode! Why 16 bits per character is a right pain in the ASCII


For the love of (deity), make your code uses UTF-8. The world has decided. Text files are UTF-8, websites are (should be) UTF-8, emails should be UTF-8 and SMSes are UTF-8. So, use UTF-8.

I am NOT a PC repair man. I will NOT get your iPad working

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Re: This is all too familiar.

My thoughts exactly. Here is how it goes: Family member ('family' includes cousins and such) buys the worst piece of hardware out there. You name it: A laptop that takes forever to boot, a peripheral that doesn't work etc. They call you to fix it, you fix it (most of the time), and whatever breaks from that point onwards is your responsibility, because of "what you did on my computer that day". So, as a reward for helping you before, apparently I now owe you free support for life, or I have to hear you blame me that I broke your computer. Right...

Not to mention what happens if you help them buy something. The slightest thing they don't like, they 'll come and whine at you.

The real solution is to just say no. And I even tell them the reasons why I say no (see above). I don't care if they think I am rude and unhelpful, I have piece of mind and more free time and that's what matters. The exception to this are the few people who aren't jerks and deserve help (whatever help I can offer anyway).

Motorola pulls out of China, leaves locals behind till of Android shop



Someone give those guys at Google an Atlas, so that they can see the US is not the entire world, not even the biggest country in the world

How Nokia managed to drive its in-house Linux train off the rails



Interesting article.

Essentially Meego/Maemo was doomed by two factors:

- As you say, they couldn't get it to ship

- Forces inside Nokia wanted Symbian to be the only OS, because they thought they would control it better or because the Finnish gods would be mad if Nokia abandoned Symbian or something. Sure on the outside they pretended to want to see MeeGo succeed, but they did everything to sabotage it.

I really hope Jolla succeeds. Please don't screw it up. Android + Jolla = geek heaven

Google's Nexus 7 tabs 'can't perform' if flash RAM crammed


"It also seems safe to say that few Nexus 7 users will ever max out their devices' capacity. "

Judging by how easily a friend of mine loaded to his Xoom an entire season of Breaking Bad, I am going to question the quoted remark.

PS: Don't ask why my friend got a Xoom. A company bought it for him.

Nearly half of Google's Moto gobble cash was spanked on patents


Google: "No, we didn't invest 12.5bn on a dud patent pocker chip that only has FRAND patents".

If Google wants to really put an end to this, they should purchase a company like LodSys or NTP that own "gold" patents, aka overly broad patents that were somehow not only granted but also verified from the supreme court. Then use those patents to bring the entire industry (except those that didn't stab them in the back pehaps like Barnes and Noble) to a standstill or demand huge royalties. This way, the motto that "everything that results in royalty payments is good" that is so popular in the circles of the US government will backfire badly, and they will be forced to drop software patents or only accept software patents that can be also be implemented in hardware without being too obvious, like any other country does.

But buying a company like Motorola Mobility that had all the good patents sucked by the parent Motorola company and left only with FRAND ones ain't going to work. Google bought Motorola Mobility thinking they were getting a killer deal, patents+devices, but as it turns out, they only got devices. So now they have to buy another company for the patents.

Rapidshare tells world+dog: Stop PIRACY now!


Of course, they won't propose the real solution to piracy, aka registering the IP of all uploaders and handing it over to the copyright holder after he sends the takedown notice. "we 've taken down the files and here are the IPs of the wrongdoers, dear copyright holder", But shh.... we europeans suffering from delayed releases (compared to the US) don't want that to happen, right?

Surprise: Neil Young still hates digital music



Let's get some things cleared

-CD-DA (Audio CD) can reproduce the entire frequency range and dynamic range the human ear can hear (22Khz is the maximum the ear can hear, 44.1Khz is the sampling of CD-DA, so the 2 times the maximum frequency sampling theorem is satisfied)

-You must have a CD player with a "proper" DAC to hear the full quality of AudioCD, or a CD-player connected to an external DAC using firewire/SPDIF/HDMI. Presence of 4x oversampling is required for a DAC to be concidered "good". WIthout oversampling, the digital to audio conversion is not that good.

-Most commercial AudioCDs today are badly mastered so that they play well on car stereos (the loud car stereo with it's over pronounced bass practically ruined the CD).

-If you can't get a good CD master, get a DVD-Audio

-Audio CD or DVD-Audio must be converted into flac .

-MP3s are lossy. And not even "transparent". The difference over the uncompressed can be heard. Get over it people.

GM Volt e-car battery safe, say feds



Look Mr Mathew, if you don't sign those papers saying how safe the Government Motors' Volt is, your department is in for some major budget cutting.

How Apple won the West (and lost the world)


Android is not just smartphones...

... it has already grown to "hybrid" tablets like the Transformer Prime. Where you have a proper screen and keyboard and everything to replace your Windows PC (and the complex UI it comes with). Windows has become so small in terms of bundled functionality (no office suite, no image editor, no audio editor and a terrible video editor that can't save to MP4) that once Android gets decent office, imaginb and multimedia apps it's game over for old Windows. On related news, Adobe released Photoshop Express for Android and videolan is working on an Android version of VLC.

Ballmer is hoping that Android will get stuck on smartphones and all Hubrids will be Windows 8 tablets, however Android has already captured 20% of tablet sales from statistical noise it was some years ago.

Apple is smarter and bundleslots of functionality into OS X, to protect canibalization from hybrids.

UltraViolet: Hollywood's giant digital gamble is here


You ALREADY can buy a "right to watch everywhere" license..

By buying the DVD and Bluray. In countries were the silly DMCA doesn't apply, the right to format shift a purchased DVD or Bluray is protected by law. And the freeware DVD Fab HD decrypter (the best format shifting tool when combined with the open source Handbrake and AutoGK tools) make everything easy.

In other words, Hollywood is too late. The market (and people's living rooms) are full with DivxPlusHD / MKV playes, and people aren't going to thow away their perfectly good devices, just for the privilledge of having to jump through the hoops of DRM. Eventually, the movie industry will resort into selling pure, non-DRMed MP4 files, much like the music industry resorted to selling pure MP3s.

Ubuntu team questions Distrowatch share slide figures


Microsoft strangehold

The supposed “Microsoft strangehold on OEMs“ is a tale told by bitter Linux fanboys. OEMs just want OSes that work, because they are the ones the user turns to when things don‘t work. Dell tried selling Ubuntu with the XPS 1530, only to have the computers break during an upgrade to the next version. All of them. This shouldn‘t have been good for the tech support department, and surely offseted any gains for not paying Microsoft a license. Lets be honest, Ubuntu doesn‘t work. It breaks when you try to upgrade to the next version half of the time. Its not the market that‘s at fault, its Linux. Oh, and Mac OS X success showed there is no “Microsoft monopoly“ in the desktop OS market either.

Ubuntu savaged by rivals infected with fondleslab fever


Canonical should die in a fire

The Linux community should have raised a red flag on Canonical from the moment they packed bleeding-edge PulseAudio with Ubuntu, breaking audio for most Ubuntu users, and generally for releasing broken versions of Ubuntu just to catch the silly self-imposed 6 month release cycle. How many times you tried to upgrade Ubuntu and the computer woke up from the upgrade not working as it should? Such a strict 6 month release cycle is something that not even a proprietary software company could do. But don't worry, we are Canonical! Release every 6 months even if it's broken!

Is the Linux Desktop community so desperate for corporate support they keep tolerating Canonical?

I am glad they are finally getting the message and moving to Mint.

Netflix: How to completely screw up



... you are missing the point. The reason Netflix‘s prices were so low was because of Hollywood being scared about BitTorrent. They figured out its better to rent their movies ar prices unheard of before, rather than not rent it at all because everyone is downloading it for free (btw they still made a profit from). Now that Hollywood is hoping to curb bittorrent with the PROTECT IP act, they are showing their real face (high rip-off prices are back).

What I really dont understand is people who buy or rent stuff in weird formats like itunes and UMD. Since when the public fell for the trap of buying the same movie over and over again? Just give me the DVD or Bluray, and i will convert it in the proper format for my cellphone, my PMP and PSP. And this is if a feel generous, and dont download it in DRM-free format for nothing from torrent. Com on guys, so them that PROTECT IP is useless and that if they want to reduce bittorrent downloads, they ‘ve got to be reasnable with their pricing.

Googlola's closed source Android temptation


Google was forced to buy Motorola...

The whole press was saying how Motorola would soon be the only Android vendor that doesn't have to pay royalties to MS, because of their immense patent portfolio that makes any other company fear them. And then Mototola comes and says they will charge a royalty (on top of the Microsoft royalty) for every Android phone sold by other Android vendors (htc, lg, samsung etc).

So its not that Google really has a choice. And the high break up fee shows that.

Anyway, I dont think Google will be seriously getting into the hardware biz. They will produce the usual "Nexus" reference handsets, but that's it. Because Google knows that other handset makers can make phones that have more bling and are more good looking. Why all Nexus phones are ugly? Is it because they are trying to make them not look like the iPhone? Anyway, Google is not dumb enough to get close to Motorola and annoy the partners that make Android look beautiful (because stock Android sure isn't, just look at the Nexus S)

Ubisoft revisits Internet-at-all-times DRM


Can't be cracked

Sorry to rain on you parade folks, but this kind of DRM cannot be cracked. See the idea behind this scheme is that certain functions of the game don't existing inside the game's executable, but being implemented in a server, and the game sends requests to the server and then receives the answer. For example, this could be how some enemy AI functions could be calculated (ask the server for the enemy's position, get answer).

-"BUT the previous incantantion of Ubi's DRM was cracked!"

-No it wasn't, the game crashed at the second level. But the press buried this small detail beautifully.

Anyway, PC gaming is a mess nowadays (requirements, DRM, random crashes on non-Nvidia cards). Glad I have a PS3, even if that means paying for my games.

Get your kit off for Putin, win an iPad 2, Russian ladies told


Cupertinian shinyness?

Either you like it or not folks, Apple has ressurected 2 significant product categories (home computers, smartphones) and created 1 new (tablets), in an era that the other companies looked like they were trying to kill the categories they "competed" in.

Have you ever used a Nokia N70 or N80? Utterly terrible. Theoretically capable of everything, yet lame and sloow at everything. I got a N70 just because I wanted the awesome Symbian S60 games gameloft was producing back then (the asphalt series etc), but the multimedia experience sucked. Blackberry? Give me a break!

As regards PCs, ever tried to use Windows 7 to convert a video to MP4? It cannot be done without the help of third party tools.

Now, I won't get an iphone because not being able to load apps from my harddisk to my own phone (even my old, locked by vodafone to death GX30i can do that with some WAP tricks) is too much flexibility to give up, so I want to get an Android phone. And i can't decide which one to get, because of all those customs UIs (facetime, Sense) and third party extensions (LG 3D) that exist out there. It's literally a "who knows what you will get with every phone" platform.

Natty Narwahl: Ubuntu marine mammal not fully evolved

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This is a known problem with old HP BIOSes...

Does your computer happen to be an HP? Many HP computers had this problem, where you would boot Linux or BSD just fine, shut it down normally, and when you tried to boot it again, it would freeze either at the BIOS password screen of at the BIOS logo screen.

This a known problem with old HP BIOSes (it's the 'bad state' problem), and has been fixed in the newest versions. Just upgrade to the latest BIOS version for your model (you can find it at hp's site at the support and drivers section), and it will be fixed.

For example, mine's problem was fixed when I went from version F.11 to F.1A...

WTF is... 4K x 2K?


Get me some decent codecs before you roll 4K

Anyone with the right tools can make even a 40960 x 21600 film, today .All it takes is feed the picture from a DSLR's CDD to a hardrive cluster, and then feed it to x264, with the appopriate resolution set.

The problem is getting the filesize to a number that's tolerable. For example, 1080p/1080i existed under the moniker of "HDTV" since forever, but only when Mpeg 4 avc appeared it started to matter.

By the way, how much of 4K footage can a Bluray Disc fit? 1 hour?

Some people say that a new disc callled HVD will solve the problem, but discs are dead IMO. A tiny scratch on such a disc would obliterate minutes of content, no matter the error correction. The future is on solid state drives and harddisks, and they won't reach storage capacity capable of doing 4K for acceptable number of movies for quite a while. And don't get me on started on IPTV/Video On Demand. ISPs will never be able to provide connections that handle the extra load.

And since the new and proposed H.265 won't achieve more than 50% bitrate reduction, and added to the fact most people can't tell the difference between 4K and 1080p, then we can conclude that 4K is just a silly gimmick.

Samsung BD-D6900 3D Blu-ray player and DVR combo


ALL Bluray players are region locked

"I wish reviewers would ask one simple questions. Is it multi-region?"

For Bluray players, the answer is dead simple: IT IS NOT. Region lockout is a mandatory part of Bluray's DRM system. Bluray's DRM is very draconian (=tough to break), so NO company in the world is going to risk and go with a reversed engineered version, like many chinese companies did with DVD (which has an easy to crack DRM). So, you can bet your car that every Bluray player in the market implement region lockout.

If you want a multi-region player, just get an MKV player that has a USB port and NTFS/EXT3 support , and then rip all your blurays to MKV files with the help of AnyDVD HD and RipBot264. or by a media center PC and install AnyDVD HD on it.



WTF no DivxHD/MKV support? Isn't LG supposed to offer this feature in their bluray players since forever? How many years does Samsung need in order to catch up with the rest of the industry? And a nonperfect- USB implementation in 2011? Are there guys serious?

Yeah its got a TV tuner that's rendered unusable by the draconian DRM, but the rest of the package is unimpressive. This is why i don't buy Samsung. They look good on the first look, but if you look closer... not so good.

FSF to Google: Free Gmail's JavaScript now!


The FSF is funny sometimes...

The FSF basically goes and tells corporations "If you don't free up the code, we won't play".

"Well then, don't play! We 'll just play with the rest of the kids, and you can stay alone in your corner"

In fact, many FSF believers (i say 'believers' because free software is obviously a cult) think it's cool to isolate themselves from awesome technology like the PS3 or Mac OS X, just because it isn't "free".

Well dear FSF believers, Sony and Apple don't care. They have better customers that don't mind about all that "free" fluff.

Oh, and btw, proprietary software isn't immoral just because some bitter old man with a beard declared it is. DRMed software might be, but non-DRMed proprietary software is not.

In the same way that women who don't cover their faces are not immoral just because some believes of Islam say the are.

Ellison drops iceberg in front of HP's unsinkable Itanic


The main problem with Itanium

The main problem with Itanium is that there are only 3 vendors to choose from: Intel, Intel and Intel (oops! on a second look, it seems it's just one).

Oh, and the thing is patented to death and heavily proprietary, so forget about any competitors jumping on board later. So much about choice.

Who is going to invest in THAT, knowing that if Itanium ever gets off, Intel will ramp up prices to the sky?

The "difficult architecture, lazy programmers" card Intel has been playing since the launch of Itanium is moot. Just give those programmers a good compiler (which has already happened), and they will happily program for ANY architecture.