01 Nov 2014

feedSlashdot

Tao3D: a New Open-Source Programming Language For Real-Time 3D Animations

descubes (35093) writes "Tao3D is a new open-source programming language designed for real-time 3D animations. With it, you can quickly create interactive, data-rich presentations, small applications, proofs of concept, user interface prototypes, and more. The interactivity of the language, combined with its simplicity and graphical aspects, make it ideal to teach programming. Tao3D also demonstrates a lot of innovation in programming language design. It makes it very easy to create new control structures. Defining if-then-else is literally a couple of lines of code. The syntax to pass pass blocks of code to functions is completely transparent. And it is fully reactive, meaning that it automatically reacts as necessary to external events such as mouse movements or the passage of time. The source code was just made available under the GNU General Public License v3 on SourceForge [as linked above], GitHub and Gitorious."

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01 Nov 2014 9:26am GMT

Khrushchev's 1959 Visit To IBM

harrymcc (1641347) writes In September of 1959, Nikita Khrushchev, the premier of the Soviet Union, spent 12 days touring the U.S. One of his stops was IBM's facilities in San Jose, which helped to create the area later known as Silicon Valley. The premier got to see the first computer which came with a hard disk, which IBM programmed to answer history questions. But what he was most impressed by was IBM's modern cafeteria. Over at Fast Company, I've chronicled this fascinating and little-known moment in tech history, which will be covered in an upcoming PBS program on Khrushchev's U.S. trip.

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01 Nov 2014 6:33am GMT

China Completes Its First Lunar Return Mission

China's Chang'e 5-T1 mission to the moon has not only taken some beautiful pictures of the Earth from the craft's perspective (hat tip to reader Taco Cowboy) but as of Friday evening (continental U.S. time) returned a capsule to Earth. (The capsule landed in Inner Mongolia.) From the linked article: Prior to re-entering the Earths atmosphere, the unnamed probe was travelling at 11.2 kilometres per second (25,000 miles per hour), a speed that can generate temperatures of more than 1,500 degrees Celsius (2,700 degrees Fahrenheit), the news agency reported. To slow it down, scientists let the craft "bounce" off Earths atmosphere before re-entering again and landing. ... The module would have been 413,000 kilometres from Earth at its furthest point on the mission, SASTIND said at the time. The mission was launched to test technology to be used in the Change-5, Chinas fourth lunar probe, which aims to gather samples from the moons surface and will be launched around 2017, SASTIND previously said.

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01 Nov 2014 3:13am GMT

31 Oct 2014

feedLifehacker

Does Bitrate Really Make a Difference In My Music?

Does Bitrate Really Make a Difference In My Music?

Dear Lifehacker,
I hear a lot of arguing about "lossless" and "lossy" music these days, but I'm having a hard time getting straight answers. Does bitrate really matter? Can most people tell the difference between high and low bitrate music files?

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31 Oct 2014 11:30pm GMT

feedArs Technica

Cop charged with stealing nude pics from women’s phones

California Highway Patrol officer suspect: image trading was a years-old "game."

31 Oct 2014 11:24pm GMT

feedLifehacker

Smigin Lets You Build and Learn Useful Phrases In Different Languages

Smigin Lets You Build and Learn Useful Phrases In Different Languages

iOS: If you're traveling internationally-or want to make simple conversation with a non-English speaker-the Smigin app on iOS lets you build phrases quickly, gives you native pronunciation, and lets you save important phrases as favorites to use later on.

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31 Oct 2014 11:00pm GMT

This Video Explains Four Psychological Terms You May Be Misusing

We sometimes get in the habit of using psychological terms to describe different people, but there's a good chance you're using these words incorrectly. This video explains what the terms psycho, OCD, schizo, and bipolar really mean, and why you may not want to use them to describe someone.

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31 Oct 2014 10:00pm GMT

feedArs Technica

One confirmed dead as Virgin Galactic SpaceShipTwo destroyed in test flight [Updated]

NTSB investigation to begin in the morning; pilots names not yet released.

31 Oct 2014 9:20pm GMT

One arrow of time to rule them all?

A toy universe that, without any special help, shows time has a direction.

31 Oct 2014 9:10pm GMT

30 Oct 2014

feedThe Register - Software: Operating Systems

CoreOS offers private Docker container registries for world+dog

Your containers, your data center, behind your firewall

Container-loving Linux vendor CoreOS has made its on-premises Docker container registry software available as a standalone product.…

30 Oct 2014 11:08pm GMT

feedOSNews

Try Windows 93 Today

What if Microsoft released an operating system in the chasm between Windows 3.1 and Windows 95? It might look something like Windows 93, an interactive art project by Jankenpopp and Zombectro that you can try right in your browser.

30 Oct 2014 4:35pm GMT

Yosemite Hackintosh with UniBeast and MultiBeast

Those who are eager to try out OS X Yosemite on any compatible Intel-based PC can follow a simple guide to install the same using UniBeast tool. The UniBeast tool creates a bootable installer via downloaded version of OS X Yosemite.

30 Oct 2014 4:33pm GMT

eComStation, OS/2 Warp and WarpStock

The Warpstock annual conference was held on Oct 24 to 26 on St. Louis, Missouri. These conferences are related to the OS/2 and eComStation platform. Currently there are two reviews of the event online at OS2World and at WarpCity2 blog. Between the relevant news there is a new company called "Arca Noae" that will focus on software development for the platform. They are working on ACPI, USB, Network and other drivers for the platform. Additionally Mensys also gave some light why there haven't been activity on the last year. Arca Noae announced driver releases and software subscription products for the users of this platform.

30 Oct 2014 4:31pm GMT

29 Oct 2014

feedThe Register - Software: Operating Systems

PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY

'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption

Half of all fanbois and gurlz have finally installed iOS 8 on their iThings, hammering home the point that Apple's new mobile operating system is much less popular than previous versions.…

29 Oct 2014 3:54pm GMT

28 Oct 2014

feedThe Register - Software: Operating Systems

Microsoft shows off spanking Win 10 PCs, compute-tastic Azure

Joe Belfiore presents auto-provisioning biz boxes

TechEd Europe Microsoft's TechEd Europe conference is under way in Barcelona, and this morning Microsoft corporate VP Joe Belfiore showed new management features in the forthcoming Windows 10.…

28 Oct 2014 1:02pm GMT

24 Oct 2014

feedPlanet Arch Linux

Pruning Tarsnap Archives

I started using Tarsnap about three years ago and I have been nothing but impressed with it since. It is simple to use, extremely cost effective and, more than once, it has saved me from myself; making it easy to retrieve copies of files that I have inadvertently overwritten or otherwise done stupid things with1. When I first posted about it, I included a simple wrapper script, which has held up pretty well over that time.

What became apparent over the last couple of months, as I began to consciously make more regular backups, was that pruning the archives was a relatively tedious business. Given that Tarsnap de-duplicates data, there isn't much mileage in keeping around older archives because, if you do have to retrieve a file, you don't want to have to search through a large number of archives to find it; so there is a balance between making use of Tarsnap's efficient functionality, and not creating a rod for your back if your use case is occasionally retrieving single-or small groups of-files, rather than large dumps.

I have settled on keeping five to seven archives, depending on the frequency of my backups, which is somewhere around two to three times a week. Pruning these archives was becoming tedious, so I wrote a simple script to make it less onerous. Essentially, it writes a list of all the archives to a tmpfile, runs sort(1) to order them from oldest to newest, and then deletes the oldest minus whatever the number to keep is set to.

The bulk of the code is simple enough:

snapclean
</p>

<h1>generate list</h1>

<p>tarsnap --list-archives > "$tmpfile"</p>

<h1>sort by descending date, format is: host-ddmmyy_hh:mm</h1>

<p>{
  rm "$tmpfile" &amp;&amp; sort -k 1.11,1.10 -k 1.8,1.9 -k 1.7,1.6 > "$tmpfile"
} &lt; "$tmpfile"</p>

<h1>populate the list</h1>

<p>mapfile -t archives &lt; "$tmpfile"</p>

<h1>print the full list</h1>

<p>printf "%s\n%s\n" "${cyn}Current archives${end}:" "${archives[@]#*-}"</p>

<h1>identify oldest archives</h1>

<p>remove=$(( ${#archives[@]} - keep ))
targets=( $(head -n "$remove" "$tmpfile") )</p>

<h1>if there is at least one to remove</h1>

<p>if (( ${#targets[@]} >= 1 )); then
  printf "%s\n" "${red}Archives to delete${end}:"
  printf "%s\n" "${targets[@]#*-}"</p>

<p>  read -p "Proceed with deletion? [${red}Y${end}/N] " YN</p>

<p>  if [[ $YN == Y ]]; then</p>

<pre><code>for archive in "${targets[@]}"; do
  tarsnap -d --no-print-stats -f "$archive"
done &amp;&amp; printf "%s\n" "${yel}Archives successfully deleted...${end}"

printf "\n%s\n" "${cyn}Remaining archives:${end}"
tarsnap --list-archives
</code></pre>

<p>  else</p>

<pre><code>printf "%s\n" "${yel}Operation aborted${end}"
</code></pre>

<p>  fi
else
  printf "%s\n" "Nothing to do"
  exit 0
fi

You can see the rest of the script in my bitbucket repo. It even comes with colour.

Once every couple of weeks, I run the script, review the archives marked for deletion and then blow them away. Easy. If you aren't using Tarsnap, you really should check it out; it is an excellent service and-for the almost ridiculously small investment-you get rock solid, encrypted peace of mind. Why would you not do that?

Coda

This is the one hundredth post on this blog: a milestone that I never envisaged getting anywhere near. Looking back through the posts, nearly 60,000 words worth, there are a couple there that continue to draw traffic and are obviously seen at some level as helpful. There are also quite a few that qualify as "filler", but blogging is a discipline like any other and sometimes you just have to push something up to keep the rhythm going. In any event, this is a roundabout way of saying that, for a variety of reasons both personal and professional, I am no longer able to fulfil my own expectations of regularly pushing these posts out.

I will endeavour to, from time to time when I find something that I genuinely think is worth sharing, make an effort to write about it, but I can't see that happening all that often. I'd like to thank all the people that have read these posts; especially those of you that have commented. With every post, I always looked forward to people telling me where I got something wrong or how I could have approached a problem differently or more effectively2; I learned a lot from these pointers and I am grateful to the people that were generous enough to share them.

Notes

  1. The frequency with which this happens is, admittedly, low; but not low enough to confidently abandon a service like this…
  2. Leaving a complimentary note is just as welcome, don't get me wrong…

24 Oct 2014 8:38pm GMT

22 Oct 2014

feedPlanet Arch Linux

SysV init on Arch Linux, and Debian

Arch Linux distributes systemd as its init daemon, and has deprecated SysV init in June 2013. Debian is doing the same now and we see panic and terror sweep through that community, especially since this time thousands of my sysadmin colleagues are affected. But like with Arch Linux we are witnessing irrational behavior, loud protests all the way to the BSD camp and public threats of Debian forking. Yet all that is needed, and let's face it much simpler to achieve, is organizing a specialized user group interested in keeping SysV (or your alternative) usable in your favorite GNU/Linux distribution with members that support one another, exactly as I wrote back then about Arch Linux.

Unfortunately I'm not aware of any such group forming in the Arch Linux community around sysvinit, and I've been running SysV init alone as my PID 1 since then. It was not a big deal, but I don't always have time or the willpower to break my personal systems after a 60 hour work week, and the real problems are yet to come anyway - if (when) for example udev stops working without systemd PID 1. If you had a support group, and especially one with a few coding gurus among you most of the time chances are they would solve a difficult problem first, and everyone benefits. On some other occasions an enthusiastic user would solve it first, saving gurus from a lousy weekend.

For anyone else left standing at the cheapest part of the stadium, like me, maybe uselessd as a drop-in replacement is the way to go after major subsystems stop working in our favorite GNU/Linux distributions. I personally like what they reduced systemd to (inspired by suckless.org philosophy?), but chances are without support the project ends inside 2 years, and we would be back here duct taping in isolation.

22 Oct 2014 9:51pm GMT

Changes to Intel microcode updates

Microcode on Intel CPUs is no longer loaded automatically, as it needs to be loaded very early in the boot process. This requires adjustments in the bootloader. If you have an Intel CPU, please follow the instructions in the wiki.

22 Oct 2014 9:29pm GMT

20 May 2012

feedPlanet Sun

Annular Solar Eclipse on Sunday, May 20th 2012

On Sunday, May 20th 2012, people in a narrow strip from Japan to the western United States will be able to see an annular solar eclipse, the first in 18 years. The moon will cover as much as 94% of the sun. An Annular Solar Eclipse is different from a Total Solar Eclipse, when the […]

20 May 2012 9:51pm GMT

09 Nov 2011

feedIGN PC

2 Million Leave World of Warcraft

In the last year the number of World of Warcraft subscribers has fallen in the from 12 million to 10.3 million...

09 Nov 2011 11:55am GMT

AC: Revelations First-Person Missions

Assassin's Creed: Revelations will have first-person missions...

09 Nov 2011 10:58am GMT

feedPlanet Security

Zone-H: http://gkppondokmelati.org

http://gkppondokmelati.org defaced by Arakloverz

09 Nov 2011 7:01am GMT

Zone-H: http://www.gentapublishing.com

http://www.gentapublishing.com defaced by Arakloverz

09 Nov 2011 6:42am GMT

Zone-H: http://gagap.net

http://gagap.net defaced by Arakloverz

09 Nov 2011 6:42am GMT

feedIGN PC

An Experience Loophole in Battlefield 3

Via YouTube user DarkSydeGeoff, we came across a Battlefield 3 exploit that allows friends to boost enormous amounts of experience in hardcore matches...

09 Nov 2011 1:43am GMT

13 May 2011

feedPlanet Sun

The story behind Planet Sun

Some words about history of Planet Sun. For round about six years Planet Sun has been an aggregation of public weblogs written by employees of Sun Microsystems. Though it never was a product or publication of Sun Microsystems itself. The website was powered by Planet and run by David Edmondson. On 01 Mar 2010 David […]

13 May 2011 12:36am GMT

10 May 2011

feedPlanet Sun

Hello world!

A warm welcome to our guests. This is your first wordpress post. We should edit or delete it, and then start blogging! Let's save our planet. Renewable energy is the future. Bio & Nature.

10 May 2011 10:18pm GMT