Saturday, July 20


Daily News Stuff 20 July 2019

Not Entirely Clear On The Point Edition

Tech News

  • Google told Reddit that its upcoming Stadia Netflix for games service isn't Netflix for games.  (Tom's Hardware)

    You have to pay for the games.  Full price.
    You have to pay for the service.
    You have to pay for a fast internet connection with a high bandwidth cap.
    You never actually own anything.
    And the experience is always going to be worse than playing it on your own computer or games console.

    On the plus side, Stadia won't be around for very long.

  • Netflix for television, which is to say Netflix, isn't having a great time of it either, losing customers despite spending $3 billion on programming in a single quarter.  (TechDirt)

    This is because they are moving to in-house content and all their in-house content is bad.

  • Lockheed's Skunk Works is building a bigger version of their experimental Compact Fusion Reactor.  (The Drive)

    When they say "compact" they mean the size of a bus, so don't expect a Mr Fusion upgrade for your F-150 anytime soon.  Still, the fact that this is apparently a privately-funded project and not a government boondoggle is in itself promising.

    We've had working fusion reactors for fifty years now.  The tricky part has been making them do something useful rather than just eat a lot of energy and make pretty sparks.

  • Israel's Beresheet lunar lander was also carrying a backup copy of the Earth.  (Medium)

    Unfortunately it experienced what is known in the trade as a hard landing, or alternately, lithobraking.  But the backup disks are extremely robust and expected to have survived.

  • Are SLI and Crossfire obsolete?  Yes.

    Bring back the 450W power supplies.

  • Quantum quokkas quicken qubit queries.  (The Guardian)

  • The secret history of the Lauren Bug.  (The Guardian)

  • PCIe 4.0 won't be available on X470 and B350 motherboards oh wait.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Biostar has followed Asus and released a BIOS update that enables PCIe 4.0 old older boards.  AMD's relationship with its OEMs at this point resembles a border collie with ADD trying to round up a bunch of cats.  Also with ADD.

  • A year before the Amiga, there was a computer called the Mindset with similar capabilities and DOS and Windows compatibility.  We're talking Windows 1.0 here, mind you, this was a long time ago.

    I looked to see if any of the YouTube retrocomputer crowd had managed to find one and restore it, but there's nothing.

    So here's another HP 9845.

    Not many of these are still working because they didn't use microprocessors - they used a custom CPU made up of individual bit-slice logic chips.  Lots of little chips subject to lots of little failures, and no-one seems to have the source to the original microcode anymore.  The emulator had to be reverse-engineered.

    For crying out loud, it's easier to find videos of the Sord M5, and no-one remembers that.

    Well, I do, but only because I saw it at a computer show back before I had a computer of my own and thought it was rather small and neat.  The chiclet keyboard had a much better feel than most of that kind.

Disclaimer: Tickets for Border Collies with ADD's 2019 World Tour are now on sale at all disreputable outlets.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:56 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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1 "On the plus side, Stadia won't be around for very long."
I'm kind of looking forward to all the screaming when people realize they'll lose access to all the games they bought.  You thought things like Microsoft shutting off its ebook store and deleting everyone's books, or the couple of times Amazon removed a book from people's Kindles was a big deal....

Posted by: Rick C at Sunday, July 21 2019 01:23 AM (Iwkd4)

2 " Giants like Disney, AT&T, and Comcast are all rushing to pull their growing slate of TV shows and movies from Netflix and shift them exclusively to their own new streaming platforms. "
I want to know who thinks people are going to pony up for 5 or 8 streaming services.  I have Netflix and Hulu Plus right now and I've been on the edge of cancelling Netflix for a year or more.

Posted by: Rick C at Sunday, July 21 2019 01:24 AM (Iwkd4)

3 You're not wrong about the Netflix content thing. I mean, not ALL of it is bad, but so MUCH of it is that your statement stands pretty well. (They have done some good things with US-produced animated content. And they have Violet Evergarden.)

All of these companies blithely ignore what made Netflix popular in the first place as they rush to reproduce the conditions that led to Netflix's popularity in the first place, as it were. (Full disclosure, I pay for Netflix, Amazon Prime, VRV, and Funi. I will probably pony up for Disney+. That's about it, and I may yet drop Funi.)

Posted by: GreyDuck at Sunday, July 21 2019 02:12 AM (rKFiU)

4 "Bring back the 450W power supplies."
A problem with big power supplies, too, is that probably most of the time, when the computer is more or less idle, you're below the point where the efficiency curve tanks--most PSUs drastically lose efficiency below, about 20%, and "sitting at the desktop reading pages in a web browser" can easily leave the computer pulling around a little less than 20% (at least, based on testing I did with a Kill-A-Watt a while back.)

Posted by: Rick C at Sunday, July 21 2019 04:40 AM (Iwkd4)

5 "Biostar didn't specify whether the PCIe x16 slot will operate at x16 speed or limited to x8 with PCIe 4.0 enabled. "
LOL!  PCIE4 x8 is pointless, except for saying you're doing it.

Posted by: Rick C at Sunday, July 21 2019 04:42 AM (Iwkd4)

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Apple pies are delicious. But never mind apple pies. What colour is a green orange?

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