Legos, IBM, Nintendo, Apple, AMD…

A selection of interesting stuff from around the web (mostly Slashdot), all in one day…
Haven’t had time to digest it yet…

newsday

Schoolteachers with real-world work experience are very valuable.

Most teachers never… ever… left the school system.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:PR (Score:5, Insightful)
by Foobar of Borg (690622) on Friday September 16, @05:43PM (#13580494)
Very true. The best teachers I ever had in college (engineering) had real world experience. I think it is actually the best kind of career to have after you work in industry for about 20 to 30 years. You don’t have to work too hard when your body is older and can’t take as much stress. Both you and the people you teach are much better off for it.

Altruistic… (Score:5, Insightful)
by truthsearch (249536) on Friday September 16, @05:19PM (#13580247)
(http://www.docforge.com/ | Last Journal: Tuesday May 11, @09:32AM)
This definitely sounds like one of the most altruistic actions of a company I’ve ever heard. This will certainly lead to some happier employees. But it can also lead to more college professors having IBM experience, which could lead to students better educated to work at IBM. Not only does it help the industry, in the very long term it can come back to help IBM. This seems like fantastic foresight on IBM’s part.

IMHO that’s not an acceptable explanation for offering zero AMD servers.

Its not as if Dell sells AMD servers at a higher price. Clearly there is an enormous amount of demand for Opterons. All the market metrics show Opterons taking a larger and larger piece of the server market. Dell’s server business is hurting as a result, and still they offer no AMD machines.

Furthermore, if as you say “Intel offers a better deal” — and that deal was based upon exclusivity. (In other words: “You get a 15% discount if you sell only Intel chips”), It seems to me that that would be illegal and anti-competitive.

[ Reply to This | Parent ]

not anticompetitive! (Score:5, Informative)
by conJunk (779958) on Friday September 16, @05:03PM (#13580092)
if as you say “Intel offers a better deal” — and that deal was based upon exclusivity. (In other words: “You get a 15% discount if you sell only Intel chips”), It seems to me that that would be illegal and anti-competitive.

What on earth do you mean? That’s about as standard as it gets. It’s called exclusive licensing, and that’s the way it goes. Companies offer price incentives to sign exclusive deals. It’s competitive because Dell is free to sign exclusively with anybody.

Here some other examples: Your job. Your company offers you $100,000/year to build widgets *exclusively* for them. If they wanted a clause in your contract that said that you may not build widgets for anyone else, you aren’t going to say it’s anticompetitive.

How about your car? Toyotas ship with (I’m making this up) Panasonic audio components. If you asked Toyota to make a line with Zenith components, they’ll probably say “sorry, but we have an exclusive agreement with panasonic.”

I’m not saying it’s a good thing, but it assuredly is not illegal.

I really do believe it has no technical merit.

I am paid to design processors and have worked on SPARC, MIPS and x86 designs for a span of over 12 years.
I spend my days thinking about how to improve processors. That’s all I do… all day long.

So please… enlighten me on how the Itanium architecture improves computing on any metric.

Any performance advantage that you see today is solely due to their having much larger die size and pin count budgets vs. other processors just to compensate for their having a crappy ISA. If you give the same budget to a comparable x86 or traditional RISC processor, their absolute performance and performance/watt would far exceed any Itanium.

Put a 9MB cache on an Opteron and see how well it does on SPECFP for example.
An Opteron beats the Itanium 2 handily on integer code with just 1MB of cache.

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20050915-5316.html

http://news.zdnet.com/2100-9588_22-5867085.html

right, and the statistics are bad anyway (Score:5, Insightful)
by conJunk (779958) on Friday September 16, @05:18PM (#13580236)
More exploits or not, FF causes fewer headaches. When it’s all said and done, I’ll choose FF’s problems over IE’s problems.

exactly. and really, at the end of the day it’s not just number of the exploits, is it? maybe firefox has 44 exploits, all of which are easily implemented by a supreme diety who speaks assembler like a native speakers, and which, once done, make the browser a little slower or the graphics render funny.

whereas there may be only 6 exploits for IE, but my dog can (and does) routinely use them, and every single one of the roots the box the browser’s running on.

this is clearly exagerated a bit, but the simple *number* of exploits isn’t too relevent

This is exactly true. I administer over 2,000 machines (mixed platform environment). We started installing Firefox as part our standard package over a year ago. There has never been one report of a problem with security involving Mozilla Firefox. There have, in the same time period, been numerous security problems originating in the Microsoft Internet Explorer web browser. It doesn’t matter how many exploits get published if they aren’t being exploited or their exploit does not result in any significant harm. As posters below have noted, this article is a result of bad journalism.

Also.. the most important factor. The Firefox community fixes the problems.

There are flaws in IE that have been known for better than 6-8 months and still there is no fix.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re: Is the Firefox Honemoon Over? (Score:5, Funny)
by kevlar (13509) on Friday September 16, @04:08PM (#13579436)
There are flaws in IE that have been known for better than 6-8 months and still there is no fix.

Ok, sure… I’ll bite. I don’t buy it. Name ONE risky security flaw that has been known for 6 months without being patched by Microsoft.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re: Is the Firefox Honemoon Over? (Score:5, Interesting)
by dmaxwell (43234) on Friday September 16, @04:19PM (#13579573)
I’ll give you not one but 19.

http://secunia.com/product/11/ [secunia.com]

Watch what you ask for, you just might get it.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
+ 4 replies beneath your current threshold.
Re: Is the Firefox Honemoon Over? (Score:5, Funny)
by jalefkowit (101585) on Friday September 16, @04:44PM (#13579870)
(http://www.jasonlefkowitz.net/)

Name ONE risky security flaw that has been known for 6 months without being patched by Microsoft.

ActiveX?

You need only to look at secunia.com’s summaries to see through the idiocy of this article:

Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.x – Highly Critical
Currently, 19 out of 85 Secunia advisories, is marked as “Unpatched” in the Secunia database.

vs.

Mozilla Firefox 1.x – Less Critical
Currently, 3 out of 22 Secunia advisories, is marked as “Unpatched” in the Secunia database.

Firefox: 0% Extremely Critical
IE: 14% Extremley Critical

Need we say more?

http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=162486&threshold=5&mode=thread&commentsort=0&op=Change

http://news.com.com/Hackings+a+snap+in+Legoland/2100-1046_3-5865751.html?tag=nefd.top

http://www.lego.com/eng/factory/design/ldd.asp

http://developers.slashdot.org/developers/05/09/16/1458211.shtml?tid=159&tid=156

http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=162460&threshold=5&mode=thread&commentsort=0&op=Change

http://freshmeat.net/projects/gimpshop/

http://osdir.com/Article7278.phtml

http://weblogs.mozillazine.org/asa/archives/008499.html

http://www.windowsitpro.com/Article/ArticleID/47746/47746.html

But my mother and father already use Linux – mostly for the games though.

http://www.macworld.com/news/2005/09/15/intelvsamd/index.php

(That said, on some measures, AMD shines. Gamers, for example, who want the absolute fastest speed on traditional apps know that AMDís single-core Athlon 64 XP FX chips offer an edge over Intelís best right now.) As more multi-threaded apps designed to better take advantage of dual core CPUs arrive, Intel and AMD will keep battling.

Well, even discounted, Intel chips currently are more expensive per performance than AMD at all or nearly all performance levels. As far as I can tell, what Apple wants it the big brand name and the guaranteed supply. Once x86 Apples are established, Apple may very well introduce AMD chips. But now it would cause more confusion among traditional and targeted customers (how many of those will know about compatibility anyways?).

http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,1859751,00.asp

http://it.slashdot.org/it/05/09/16/1211227.shtml?tid=172&tid=109&tid=156

http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3143782

Remember when… (Score:5, Funny)
by spiderworm (830684) on Friday September 16, @05:18AM (#13574357)
Remember the first time you picked up a Nintendo controller for the original Super Mario Brothers games? Remember swinging your arms in the air like a moron, as if the movement of the controller was actually going to do something? Now we’ve been trained ourselves to keep our arms and our wrists still, and move only our fingers. Now it looks like Nintendo is asking us to revert ourselves, not revolt.

It will be interesting to see what comes of this. Surely the Asian markets alone will create the sort of community needed to spur game development and innovation with the thing. And I do appreciate that Nintendo continues to surprise us, whereas Sony and M$ continue to offer the same old, same old. Lest we forget, however, not every suprise is a good thing (remember Virtual Boy?). I’m betting on Nintendo to deliver the same quality, innovative fun that they’ve been delivering for decades now.

Where did you here that this controller had a gyroscope? They only mentioned that was what people were rumoring.

I reckon it will work similar to modern virtual reality wands, with the mentioned sensors presumably doing a good job of finaggling the position of the wand. Note this is very similar to how the power glove worked, its just that the technology has gotten a LOT better due to over a decade of research in VR which seems to just now be poised to make an entrance into consumer market.

I’ve had the chance to play with this kind of stuff in CAVE and related applications, and it always seemed like it could be so much more, if only for some really solid software interface engineering…
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:I love the power glove… (Score:5, Informative)
by some guy on slashdot (914343) on Friday September 16, @03:23AM (#13574021)
Actually, it would appear that it has both. An external sensor for detecting position and an internal one for determining orientation. (1UP.com referred to it as a “chip”, but I can’t imagine what it could be other than an gyroscope.) Also, IGN confirmed that you can turn the controller over along it’s axis as an input method. Can’t do that with anything but a gyro.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:I love the power glove… (Score:5, Informative)
by Emil Brink (69213) on Friday September 16, @03:37AM (#13574083)
(http://www.obsession.se/gentoo/)

1UP.com referred to it as a “chip”, but I can’t imagine what it could be other than an gyroscope.

Do those have to be mutually exclusive? I don’t think so, and people like Analog Devices [analog.com] seem to agree. I quote the linked-to page, one of several such products:

The ADXRS150 is a 150 deg./sec. angular rate sensor (gyroscope) on a single chip, complete with all of the required electronics.

Perhaps that is what Nintendo stuck in there? It probably contains one ore more accelerometers, too. I guess we won’t know until Lik Sang [lik-sang.com] or someone with similiar low respect for newly released hardware and high competence in the application of screwdrivers get their hands on it, though. :)

How about accelerometers (Score:5, Interesting)
by BobPaul (710574) * on Friday September 16, @03:53AM (#13574133)
(http://www.bobpaul.org/userScripts | Last Journal: Tuesday August 09, @08:58PM)
Can’t do that with anything but a gyro.

Rather than a gyro, how about a series of accelerometers (1 for every axis). If you know the acceleration in an access, derive it and you have speed. Derive it again and you have the distance moved.

This is much more likely than gryos.

Note – USC is doing something in this area… I think USCR mentioned something like this.

When I last visited the U of MN virtual reality lab, they said the best controller they had was a hacked power glove. The sphere control they had may have had more degrees of freedom–but it sucked for moving around in 3D. They preferred the old power glove.

It can’t be all that bad. I never got to try it myself–just the sphere, and insainly expensive VR helmets still suck.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treknobabble

Ballmer: ‘I’ve never thrown a chair in my life’

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/09/13/ballmer_chair_denial/

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/05_39/b3952008.htm

http://thetshirtclub.com/

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=162138&threshold=5&mode=thread&commentsort=0&op=Change

http://shop.lego.com/Product/Factory/About.aspx

The above links and quotes are copy-and-pasted from their sources

Leave a Reply