Robert Pogson

One man, closing all the windows.

Daily Archives / Wednesday, December 26, 2012

  • Dec 26 / 2012
  • 0

Bombing Bakeries

“An air assault in Homs province killed at least 15 people Monday, a day after more than 100 were killed at a bakery in Hama province, opposition activists said.”

see A Christian prayer for peace in Syria –

The Syrian government seems to have no moral compass at all. The more their grip on territory loosens the more brutal they become. Bakeries are easy targets. They are hot and show up well on infrared sighting systems and people tend to queue up for scarce supplies. The baking cannot be distributed because of shortages of power and fuel and flour.

It’s time the world intervened and bombed the cities with bread at least. How many lives could be saved just by such air-drops? The world should also prevent Assad’s military planes from flying. They must be fairly concentrated on the ground and cratering runways 24×7 would do a lot.

I recommend the world give up on the idea of trying to keep a lid on Syria by letting Assad kill wantonly. It’s past the time the rebels should be armed to push Assad out ASAP (As Soon As Possible). They need small arms and light anti-tank weapons. They should be provided target identifiers for the world to get reliable aiming points to punish Assad’s troops. Communications equipment could be used to identify the presence of Assad’s air power too. The rate of defection is increasing. A little push might go a long way. A welcome mat in a neighbouring country for Assad’s planes to defect might be helpful. Perhaps a landing strip can be secured elsewhere in Syria. Destroy the planes or recruit the pilots. It’s all good.

The status quo does no one any good. It just prolongs the misery of the innocent and will no doubt make the rebels even more bitter.

  • Dec 26 / 2012
  • 19

Why Firearms-Control Laws Are Despised

Proponents of “gun-control” laws frequently ask why anyone would oppose laws that “save children” etc. Well, here’s another example of what can go wrong with firearms licensing. A newspaper requested and received information on firearms licencees under “Freedom of Information” in USA and published the data about handgun licencees:“hundreds of residents were shocked to see their information posted without their being notified. Some said the map would prompt burglaries because thieves are now aware of where weapons might be found.”

see Newspaper sparks outrage for publishing names, addresses of gun permit holders –

Idiots! With idiots making such poor decisions is it any wonder I and many others take a dim view of firearms licensing? Need/want a handgun? Here’s a list of homes you can burgle/invade… Twits! That such a result can pass three layers of idiots shows it’s not paranoia. One layer of idiots passed the licensing regime. Another layer of idiots released the information about licensees and a third made it public. The idiots are out to get firearms owners. It’s not about saving children but putting firearms owners at risk/trouble.

Why on Earth does firearms licencees’ personal information become subject to Freedom of Information? Whatever happened to privacy? Stories like this will encourage the black market in firearms, the opposite of what the “gun-controllers” seek.

Other issues that trouble firearms-owners about “gun-control”:

  • it’s really “people-control” not gun-control,
  • it hobbles law-abiding people while criminals can ignore the law trivially,
  • it does not save any children, and
  • the cost is horrendous causing waste and expense for consumers, businesses and manufacturers, harming the economy.

The problem with criminal use of firearms is not firearms but criminals. Making good people into criminals by restricting ownership/use of firearms to the point where it is easier to violate the law than to obey it is irrational. Aren’t the prisons full enough with the wars in Afghanistan, on terror and on drugs? Why will another war make the world a better place? Please, stop this war on firearms-owners.

Let’s publish lists of people and addresses where other valuables are likely to be found:

  • diamonds,
  • gold,
  • art,
  • luxury cars, and
  • our children.

After all, if it saves one child, it’s worth the hassle. Right? Doesn’t everyone have the right to know what we’ve got?

  • Dec 26 / 2012
  • 18

The Future of LibreOffice and Other Office-Suites

“it is a dilemma for both TDF and Apache as to whether to divert resources into an open source web version of the software or plough on competing with MSO for a desktop space that looks like becoming a paradigm of the past.”

Mail Thread Index – The Document Foundation Mailing List Archives starting at message 06698.

While this is definitely a matter on the horizon there will be years of relevance still for hundreds of millions of XP machines looking for a home. If XP becomes no longer an option in 2014, many millions will go to GNU/Linux whereupon MSO is not an option except from a terminal server. I expect we are only a year or two away from useful LibreOffice versions for the web. Already there are demonstration projects.

MSO, OTOH, is handicapped by legacy installed base and features not portable to the web. M$ cannot respond to these issues rapidly without cutting their revenue-streams. They have to shift gradually and in the process will lose customers to Google and LibreOffice. It’s all good. LibreOffice should continue good growth.

“As of today, LibreOffice is being used by close to 60 million people. It is the standard free office suite on all major platforms, available in over 100 languages. Large cities and organizations are deploying it very successfully, more and more schools and universities are rolling it out, and there’s not a single month where it is not covered by major media around the globe – because we always have good news to share. The Document Foundation has become a member of leading organizations for free software and open standards, and at the very same time, is widely seen as a the leader in its area, built on strong reputation and credibility. Last but not least, the ecosystem is growing rapidly, as more and more enterprises discover the business benefit of truly free software.”

see recent conference announcement

  • Dec 26 / 2012
  • 0

New Horizon in IT, Ultra-Low-Voltage IC Technology

“the ultra-low-voltage SoC technology is able to utilize innovations facilitating power generation via ambient energy sources, Wu pointed out. For example, thermo-electric generator SoCs can convert heat emitted from human bodies into electricity

via ITRI debuts ultra-low-voltage IC technology.

The demonstration was at 65nm. If this can be done at 14nm, the future is now. CPUs will be able to run on trivial amounts of energy available from photo-voltaic, shaking or thermo-electricity. This will allow more throughput on mobile devices or much less use of battery-power. Pick whatever combination you want. Clients will become thinner and servers much more efficient.