Mars Rover Opportunity Flash Memory Issues

Slashdot has an interesting article about Opportunity, the Mars rover.

On day 3885 of a 30 day mission, they are having issues with Opportunity’s flash memory. After ten years, the memory situation is becoming untenable. As much as I love being the first person to call BS and complain about issues, this is one time I’m going to have to say the flash memory has more than done its’ job.

Temperature extremes for an insanely long period of time is eventually going to do bad things to flash memory. The fact that the vehicle has been performing like a champ for this long of a period of time is beyond belief. Everyone involved in the design and construction of Opportunity deserves a well-earned congratulations!

We’ll miss you Opportunity!

Sony Might Be Right

Like others, I initially thought that Sony’s actions with regard to “The Interview” were gutless. After about five minutes of reflection, I realized that I can not really blame Sony for going into damage control mode. Now that rumors are indicating that hackers may have obtained no less than 20 terabytes of data, I can not see any other path for Sony right now.

It is probable that the North Koreans and their totalitarian thugs know the employees home addresses. It is probable that the hackers have access to everything from social security numbers to expense reports and confidential internal memos. Hackers know exactly who to lean on to cause the maximum damage.

If I were a decision maker at Sony, and I am damned glad that I am not, I would be changing all of my personal accounts, arranging for much more aggressive physical security for myself, my fellow employees, the facilities, and the digital systems. Changing ALL of the corporate accounts and securing the existing infrastructure would be my personal crusade. Right now, Sony needs to buy time. Whatever they have to do to stall the bad guys while they re-align their asset categories and take care of security issues is time they badly need. Later, when they feel that the have a degree of security, I would release the movie at no charge. I would send a DVD or Blu-Ray copy to the every South Korean reporter.

For right now, they have to do exactly what they are doing.

There is one area that they are making a big mistake. I would not be putting up with fat Al Sharpton, race hustler and shakedown artist. By letting Al get his hooks into their business processes, they are going to have a mess to deal with later. Of course, there may be so many racist comments in their e-mails and other documents that they have to start inoculating now…

Good luck Sony. I really hope someone whacks Kim Jong Un. Maybe Sony should set up an account or two for extra-curricular solutions?

Update, just before Christmas, Sony decided to be complete media whores and release the movie and run with the cash. God bless their greedy free-market hearts! Way to go Sony!

Spain at war with Google

Some web sites in Spain, represented by the AEDE, decided to be clever and shake down Google for some money. They advocated for and eventually caused a law to be passed in Spain that says any quotes or snippets from any sites in Spain will have to be paid for. No matter what the owner of the site’s content says, the fee is in effect.

Google showed some sense and said, okay we won’t show anything from any news sites in Spain.

Gee, now the AEDE is freaking out and “demanding” that Google publish their material… That same material that Google would have to pay for.

Not to be outdone when it comes to stupid, the Dutch, in the form of the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA), is now saying that Google must follow the absolute letter of the law in their country. In their country, you basically need to get a signed document from everyone in the country that you are going to publish anything about…

Small people, small minds, and petty bureaucrats. Reminds one of our politicians in D.C.

This battle is going to be a lot of fun to watch. Anyone looking for news from Spain can still go directly to the Spanish newspaper sites online, they just won’t find the information from Google.

Since there are news producers in Latin America, I wonder if some of the smarter Spanish sites will relocate their data?

FluentU German Learning Links

FluentU.com has some interesting Youtube channels for those learning German. The complete article is here. Both the fluentu.com site and the Youtube channels are worth looking into!

Deutsch für Euch
https://www.youtube.com/user/DeutschFuerEuch

Easy Languages – All German Playlists
https://www.youtube.com/user/magauchsein/playlists?sort=dd&view=50&shelf_id=14

Deutsch Happen
https://www.youtube.com/user/DeutschHappen

Learn German with Herr Antrim
https://www.youtube.com/user/MrLAntrim

German Pod 101 (corrected URL)
https://www.youtube.com/user/meroba34

Get Germanized
https://www.youtube.com/user/MeisterLehnsherr

Girls4Teaching (Interestingly enough, an Italian initiative)
https://www.youtube.com/user/girl4teaching

Easy Online German
https://www.youtube.com/user/easyonlinegermancom

Blitztag1 (great name for a podcast)
https://www.youtube.com/user/blitztag1

Smarter German
https://www.youtube.com/user/smartergerman

Mel Brooks, a mental defect

Nation Review Online has a wonderful article that I encourage all of those who believe in civil discourse to read.

My favorite quote is by Mel Brooks, a moron:

The rise of the Tea Party “has happened before in history,”
“In Germany in the ’20s and ’30s, there was this right-wing reactionary element that was so terrified of anarchy and Communism that they said, ‘You know what? There’s a group of street thugs that are real ideologues, and . . . once they get into power we can control them.’ . . . What is true is that ideologues are only loyal to ideology.”

Gee Mel, I hate to break it to you but the Tea Party guys believe in following the constitution, unlike liberal mental defects like you, Mel. They actually believe that laws should be faithfully executed. If the ideology is following the constitution, where is there an issue?

Losers, like you Mel, fear the constitution. I wonder why Mel? Something to hide? Maybe you know that your chosen one, the Great Barry, is in violation of those laws? I can see where that would be so inconvenient for such elite thinkers like yourself, Mel.

Hey Mel, ever heard of a guy named Stalin? He had ideas just like your chosen one.