Steve Rowe's Blog

Ruminations on Computing - Programming, Test Development, Management and More

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  • Blog Post: Pruning the Decision Tree

    A great post by Marc Randolph got me thinking.  He tackles the question of why Netflix made the moves they made recently.  Specifically, why did they spin off their DVD option as a company called Qwixter?  The answer: focus. What separates successful ventures from failures is choosing...
  • Blog Post: Intel Atom's CISC Legacy

    Interesting article over at Ars Technica discussing the CISC nature of the Atom processor and how that affects its performance compared to other embedded processors. Does CISC have more liabilities in the mobile space than it did in the desktop space?
  • Blog Post: A History of Filesystems

    Ars Technica has a very interesting article about the history of filesystems . They cover all the major systems including FAT (MS-DOS), HFS (Mac), NTFS (NT), Ext2/3 (Linux), and many others like the Amiga. They also cover upcoming systems like ZFS. If you have interest in the systems space, check it...
  • Blog Post: An Explanation for the "Music Slows Down Networking" Issue

    Last week there was a small storm on the internet when it was discovered that playing music on Windows Vista caused networking to slow down. Mind you, the slowdown had little practical effect for most users. It was most pronounced on gigabit ethernet connections under load. Still, it was definitely and...
  • Blog Post: Why Windows Can't See 4GB of Memory

    Interesting post by Hilton Locke about why installing 4 GB of RAM on a 32-bit box doesn't actually give you 4 GB of RAM. Instead it gives you something like 3 GB of RAM. A 32-bit operating system should be able to access 4GB. Worse, a 64-bit operating system might not be any better. What's happening...
  • Blog Post: None of Us Is as Dumb as All of Us

    That's the subtext on the "Meetings" inspirational poster from Despair.com . What it means to me is that you'll never get a great design out of a committee. When designing a piece of software, you want to get input from many people but how do you keep from being paralyzed by input. Worse yet, how do...
  • Blog Post: Understanding Networking

    In my recent foray into podcasting , I ran across a gem. It is a 4-part series which explains most of the basics of networking in easy-to-understand terms. The series is part of what is called Security Now from the guys who do This Week In Tech . It covers the basics of IP, the difference between TCP...
  • Blog Post: Unix vs Windows

    Over the past few months I have had the opportunity to take an Operating Systems class at a leading University. During that time, I have been once again confronted with the whole Unix (*nix, Linux, Mac OSX) versus Windows argument. It became quite apparent to me during that time that the professor thought...
  • Blog Post: Sony's Cell Microprocessor

    Things have been too busy for me to write any more articles lately. To tide you over, here is something I found interesting: The Cell Processor is going to be the heart and soul of the next Playstation. It is a joint effort between Sony, Toshiba, and IBM. It is supposed to run on everything from the...
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