* Posts by jotheberlock

68 publicly visible posts • joined 4 Nov 2010


Missed expectations, zero guidance: Tesla's 'great year' was anything but


Re: Right

So must you. Chinese-style porcelain including Limoges has been in fashion in Europe since the 18th century. Which crypt do you sleep in during daytime?

Eben Upton on Sinclair, Acorn, and the Raspberry Pi


Re: The glory days of UK IT

It has a hell of a lot to do with European import costs and sales taxes for PCs. They were very much not affordable home computers over here before the 90s or so.

'Only 700 new IT jobs' were created in US last year


Not sure I trust any analyst who claims there's strong actual jobs demand for 'blockchain', to be honest.

Doom is 30, and so is Windows NT. How far we haven't come


'the software is so badly written that it will use precisely one thread running on one processor'

Look up Amdahl's Law. If the thing you are trying to do is fundamentally sequential, as is often the case - if you need to compute a before you can compute b before you can compute c - then it doesn't matter how many cores you have available, you are going to be stuck using one core for that thing. Not that there aren't cases where they could help and aren't utilised as much as they could be but more cores/threads are not a panacea. A 96 core processor does not and never will do things 96 times as fast as a single core.

How to deorbit the Chromebook... and repurpose it for innovators


Pretty sure they implicitly meant laptops. Kids in schools are not lugging a full sized tower and monitor with them from class to class.

Microsoft floats bringing a text editor back to the CLI


Vim would be the obvious choice because Vi(m) is already standard on UNIX. Unlike emacs, it's available pretty much everywhere so any sysadmin will have basic familiarity with it for editing config files and suchlike.

UK immigration rules hit science just as it rejoins €100B Horizon program


Re: I live in a former Council House. I bought it in 1980 for £13,500 and still live there.

The magical bit is that if they hadn't it would revert to the council on their death for free and be used to house someone else who needs it. Now it won't.

40 years of Turbo Pascal, the coding dinosaur that revolutionized IDEs


If I remember 'pure' Pascal didn't even have file i/o (teaching language see) until a lot later (and then nobody used the standardised version)

Revival of Medley/Interlisp: Elegant weapon for a more civilized age sharpened up again


Re: You /what/ Liam?

Been a while since accumulator-based CPUs were common, though...:) More like 8-32 more or less similar (lots of caveats here around things like stack pointers or even the program counter) GPRs.

IBM-led advertising X-odus gains steam as more flee Musk's platform


Re: Freedoms... another low information "anti Nazi"

And the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is a democracy. You can tell, it's right there in the name, they couldn't possibly be lying about that could they?

Ubuntu Budgie switches its approach to Wayland


Re: ssh? @Tom 38

I am sorry you cannot run Wayland applications on your AIX box you have sitting on your desk.

(Endianness is a dead letter for 99.99% of people these days. x86(-64) and ARM are both little endian)

Arm wrestles assembly language guru's domains away citing trademark issues


Re: C#

Apart from the other comments here, it's 'Bjarne Stroustrup'.

Softbank snaps up Vision Fund's stake in Arm ahead of IPO


Re: Wishful thinking

'Research chips' aren't shipping.

Source code definitely doesn't count.

Qualcomm is this year still 'getting involved in' a joint venture to make RISC-V chips -https://www.qualcomm.com/news/releases/2023/08/leading-semiconductor-industry-players-join-forces-to-accelerate - and is in a licence dispute with ARM so heavily incentivised to talk RISC-V up.

I'll believe the hype when I start actually seeing a bunch of shipping, commercial RISC-V products out there. Articles from 2017 and I still can't buy a phone with one in?


Re: Wishful thinking

'What there has been, is the arrival of competition, in the form of RISC-V, which is now taking a slice of Arm’s microcontroller market,' - citation needed I think. People have TALKED about it a lot which is what you do if you want a better deal from Arm, but how many design wins? How many shipping products with RISC-V in? There's a couple but Arm is still heavily dominant.

Arm co-founder: Britain's chip strat 'couldn’t be any worse'


Re: oxbridge

'Oxbridge /BA/' - so arts degrees, not the techies (well, I say that, I'm a techy and my degree's in history, but by and large).

5% of the cloud now runs on Arm as chip designer plans 2023 IPO


Re: The death of CISC?

It did die, pretty much, a modern desktop x86 CPU is RISC-like internally (and despite being a bit ugly, x86 isn't as CISC as say VAX anyway - importantly, for example, you don't get multiple memory operands in an instruction, or some of the wacky stuff like being able to do *******< some pointer> in hardware, in one instruction, which plays hob with modern caches/memory .

(On the other hand, fixed length 32 bit instruction sets /also/ didn't entirely stick around - hence ARM Thumb and MIPS16 - because once you get to a certain point instruction decode becomes much less of a bottleneck anyway)

Prepare to be shocked: Employees hate this One Weird Clause


Re: Modern Slavery

Most employees are theoretically replaceable - skilled ones take months to hire, then months to learn your stack, before they can become nearly as productive as the previous guy, even assuming you haven't hired a lemon which absolutely does happen. And they still won't have the years of experience of both how the systems and the company works. Employees can't be swapped in and out like lego bricks and if you think so you are the epitome of a terrible manager.

Smart ovens do really dumb stuff to check for Wi-Fi


I had a boiler in a house I rented a couple of years ago labelled 'Made in West Germany'. Still worked fine.

Twitter starts auction to flip the bird, furniture, pizza ovens, gadgets galore


What on earth is a 'buyers' premium'? They're charging you for the privilege of them charging you?

C: Everyone's favourite programming language isn't a programming language


Re: Nothing new, kinda pathetic really

Any language on Linux (or MacOS) has to learn to talk C, to talk to libc, unless it wants to do raw syscalls which is unusual on Linux and flat out unsupported on MacOS. That's how Unix works.


Re: Nothing new, kinda pathetic really

It does, though, if you're on any form of Unix. Calling procedures are defined by what was originally the Itanium ABI. Windows has its own thing, but either way there are two standard calling procedures, Windows and Unix (including MacOS, it does the same thing as Linux) for x86-64. That's as much as, well, any platform has, VAX included as far as I'm aware.

Nvidia revives canceled RTX 4080 as 'new' 12GB RTX 4070 TI


Re: 12GB

I mean, fine - but that's RAM. Not GPU memory. They aren't the same thing.

This is the military – you can't just delete your history like you're 15


Re: Labor Labour

I generally make a snarky comment relating to Australian politics when that happens.

Now-frozen crypto-lending biz Celsius accused of devolving into a Ponzi scheme


Re: A strange business model anyway

You what? Most of the Boomers I know got to take early retirement, state retirement age used to be in the early 60s, it's us younger people who are going to have to work themselves into a grave.

openSUSE Leap 15.4: The best desktop on the RPM side of the Linux world


Re: give it hundreds of gigabytes, rather than tens.

Not that this excuses quite that big a driver (maybe NVidia Experience is on there too?) but bear in mind graphics cards are much much more complicated than they used to be, most of it in userspace. There's going to be a complete optimising compiler on there for the shaders, after all.

Original killer PC spreadsheet Lotus 1-2-3 now runs on Linux natively


Re: Thanks.

COFF to ELF....

(Windows, of course, still uses some of it, that's the COFF bit in PE/COFF https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portable_Executable)

Oracle offers migration path for Solaris 10 apps


Re: A lot of Solaris boxes still around

HP-UX/Itanium is /definitely/ dead, though.

If you fire someone, don't let them hang around a month to finish code


You could always use Scheme, which guarantees tail call optimisation (specifically so you can write that sort of recursive code functional programmers etc find so elegant...)

A C compiler can do it too but you're not /guaranteed/ it'll do it, so not something you'd want to rely on in production.

How not to attract a WSL (or any) engineer


Canonical is based in the UK, where you are not able to go to an employment tribunal in the first two years of employment except for the most obvious of reasons (e.g..being outright told you're being fired because you're black) - so until you hit the two year mark you can be fired about as easily as in the US although your notice period is more likely to be a month+ than two weeks.

A 'reform' introduced by New Labour at one year and then doubled by the Lib Dem/Tory coalition, so thanks to all three major UK parties there.

GNOME Project retires OpenGL rendering library Clutter


GLX has been a thing since 1992 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GLX - though granted not used all that much.

That's a signature move: How $320m in Ether was stolen from crypto biz Wormhole


Re: So, ETH was lost to bad code, and now new ETH has magically been added

And yet this sort of thing seems to happen way, WAY more often to crypto people than people relying on SWIFT. Funny that.

Imagination GPU cleared for RISC-V CPU compatibility, licensed to chip designers


Re: I'm curious

Their GPUs aren't historically based on MIPS, its just Imagination also, separately held the MIPS licence (for CPU purposes). I guess that might have changed since since GPUs generally have moved away from VLIW, but I doubt it.

BeOS rebuild / Haiku has a new feature / that runs Windows apps


Re: "relatively modern programming language"

For what it's worth it's not really 'the specific C++ compiler' any more and hasn't been for years. Windows has its own ABI, everyone else uses the relevant CPU-specific variant of the ABI originally developed for the Itanium 20 years ago (so, g++ on Linux and MacOS, clang on similar, basically everyone else outside of maybe some ancient commercial Unix?)


I am not sure 'subsystem' means what you think it does. It's a program that can run Windows programs. It's not a subsystem with kernel integration in the sense WSL is on the Windows side, for example.

IBM bosses wrongly sacked channel salesman after Tech Data joint venture failed, tribunal rules


Re: This was in the UK. In the US …

Try going to an employment tribunal in your first two years' of employment. You can't. You're out of luck, it's not legally allowed, so an employer can basically fire you for whatever with no comeback.

Blair brought in a 1 year limit for 'flexibility' under New Labour and the Lib Dem/Tory coalition extended it to two years so basically all three national parties have screwed us on this one.

Upcoming Intel GPU to be compatible with Arm


Re: Compatibility?

I would assume what this really means is 'Intel will provide ARM drivers and official support'. The only actual issue I can think of between CPU and discrete peripheral would be a 64 bit peripheral where the CPU is 32 bit and can't generate 64 bit reads/writes (or where the peripheral has > 4gigs of mappable memory that the CPU needs to talk to directly of course - GPUs maybe?). Endianness is certainly a pain but not theoretically insuperable.

Microsoft's UWP = Unwanted Windows Platform?


Or you can use Qt which sits on top of the Win32 API on Windows and still gives you a nice modern programming environment and as a bonus works basically everywhere else as well.


Re: Unpopular opinion

I mean there's just a smaaaall difference here in that all the Unixes were made by literally different companies. This is all Microsoft! It's all the same company, they should be able to fix this.

Give us a CLU: Object Oriented Programming pioneer arrives on GitHub


Re: Oh no

I mean the whole thing with PostScript is it's a complete programming language, not just a graphics file format - removing the Turing completeness was one of the points of replacing it with PDF. You'd need a full-on PostScript interpreter running in the browser to guarantee being able to render arbitrary PostScript, and that has security implications etc just as with Java applets back in the day.

Tachyum's Prodigy emulator achieves first boot, runs Linux and says 'hello, world'


Re: Transmeta

I don't know about Clive but it has been tried in a research setting - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AMULET_microprocessor

Never really panned out though.

The common factor in all your failed job applications: Your CV


I'm sorry, MFC?! That was terrible back in 1998 let alone now.

Qt I'll give you.

The silicon supply chain crunch is worrying. Now comes a critical concern: A coffee shortage



It's not 1950 any more, lot of us prefer coffee these days (especially coders)

'It's dead, Jim': Torvalds marks Intel Itanium processors as orphaned in Linux kernel


I'm curious why you think x86-64 isn't an 'actual' 64 bit processor. It's not just 64 bit addressing, it has 64 bit GPRs and ALUs too, just like MIPS-64, Sparc 64, PowerPC 64 or indeed AArch64.

And as, indeed, AArch64 shows quite clearly, the ISA isn't the main constraint on increasing performance; we would not all be suddenly using 10GHz CPUs if MIPS had won out over x86.

Qualcomm pays $1.4bn to acquire ex-Apple and AMD Arm server chip engineers (and the biz they set up)


Or they don't want to risk having to rely on ARM IP now that's going to be NVidia IP, of course...

Backers of Planet Computers' Astro Slide 5G phone furious after shock specs downgrade


Re: They need to clarify...

The ROC is also known as 'Taiwan' and shouldnt be subject to any sanctions from Trump, is the point. It's a whole other country (whatever China might sometimes claim).

One of the world's most prominent distributed ledger projects has been pushed back by a year


Re: Obscurity and gauntlets

They can also run HP-UX.

Even 2020 cannot bring forth the Year of Linux on the Desktop


I am shocked, shocked I say, that ESR was spouting bullshit.

You're stuck inside, gaming's getting you through, and you've $1,500 to burn. Check out Nvidia's latest GPUs


You mean 'up to' 14GB, if the only thing you're working with is tensors, which isn't going to be the case, surely?

In the frame with the Great MS Bakeoff: Microsoft sets out plans for Windows windows


I mean,

a) Motif is a GUI toolkit while Xt is a set of tools for making a GUI toolkit (with Athena as the reference barebones GUI toolkit that shipped with X11), so it's not really comparable. Motif doesn't extend Xt, it sits on top of it.


b) Nobody since has used Xt. Gtk doesn't use it. Qt doesn't use it.

Nvidia may be mulling lopping Arm off Softbank: GPU goliath said to have shown interest in acquiring CPU design house


Re: This could make sense

And, y'know, the layoffs.