Category Archives: News

Why the hate for Michelle Obama’s common sense advise?

This seems to be a case of hyper sensitivity over Michelle Obama’s recent comments regarding childhood obesity.  Mrs. Obama basically said:

  • My Doctor said that my daughter’s Body Mass Index (BMI) wasn’t looking healthy
  • I began controlling my family’s meal portions and asked kids to be aware of when they’re full
  • I substituted water bottles for sweet drinks in their lunch
  • Limited their television to get them to be more active
  • Didn’t make a big deal about any of this because they were only minor changes and we just did them
  • Doctor was shocked at the dramatic improvement of my daughter and I replied that we only made small changes
  • We can all make these small changes too and be healthy

As a parent myself, I listened to her interview and found my self nodding my head up and down because everything she said was sage advice for any parent.  But a few hypersensitive people picked up on this and Drudge Report had the headline of “MY FAT DAUGHTERS” being attributed to Michelle Obama.  It’s almost as if they’re mad about something Mrs. Obama didn’t say but they’re imagining that she said it.

Laura Collins Lyster-Mensh of the F.E.A.S.T (and organization that combats eating disorders) freaked out as if Mrs. Obama had done infinite harm to the first daughters.  Now I don’t want to make light of eating disorders, but it is totally irrelevant to anything Mrs. Obama’s said.  Mrs. Obama did not call her daughters “fat” and she is not putting them on some anorexic diet.  Mrs. Obama isn’t some stage mother screaming at her daughter in public that she’s too heavy.  She put them on a healthier diet with some minor adjustments after she listened to her doctor’s warning and got great results.

Eating disorders are a real problem, but it can go both ways.  Too much food (especially junk food) is just as bad and unhealthy as too little food.  Being a skeleton is really bad for someone’s health but so is being really obese.  Americans of European decent are about 4 centimeters shorter than their European counterparts because they’re eating too much junk food so they’re growing more horizontally than they are vertically.  The first lady’s message is exactly what the country needs to hear.

The bottom line is that we can’t freak out every time someone says we need to moderate our junk food intake.  Save your criticisms for the stage mom Laura, Mrs. Obama is giving the right advice on diet and exercise for children.

Debunking the hype that the new BitTorrent protocol is “network friendly”

uTP-network-friendlyThe story that the new BitTorrent client uTorrent 2.0 is “network friendly” is making the top headlines on the Web and mailing lists.  The only problem with this story it that it has no actual data to back up its assertions.  I took the time yesterday to run some tests on the new uTorrent 2.0 beta build 16850 which supports the new “friendly” BitTorrent UTP.  Based on my initial testing, the claim that the new BitTorrent client is network friendly appears to be false.

Read the rest at Digital Society.

Intel Clarkdale dual-core Westmere system at 27.6W system power

This mini-ITX system based on Intel’s next generation Clarkdale dual-core “Westmere” 32nm CPU with a 45nm GPU and memory controller on the same CPU package has a system idle power consumption of 27.6 watts.  That seems pretty outrageously efficient for a system that performs about as well as a quad-core Q9600 2.66 GHz processor.  This is probably the first x86 CPU with a built in graphics controller and it is using a 32nm Westmere core which is a die shrunk Nehalem core with some modest architectural enhancements.

Now if we had switcheable graphics support on the desktop, then we’d have a gaming system that could idle at 27.6 watts compared to a normal gaming system that idles at 110 watts because the GPU can’t be turned off.  It would probably be the most energy efficient gaming system in the world.

FCC 5th principle must allow for reasonable discrimination

As most of us have heard by now, the FCC announced yesterday their intention to create a new “5th principle” of nondiscrimination on the Internet. While there are some serious questions as to whether this is a wise mandate for wireless Internet services, such a principle applied to wired Internet services could be a good thing if it allows for reasonable discrimination.

Full story »

DFI’s two systems on one motherboard

This is a VERY cool new motherboard from DFI. It features a P45 chipset motherboard along with an NVIDIA Ion motherboard and Intel Atom CPU on a single board with an integrated gigabit Ethernet switch. It comes with a USB and audio KVM switch as well. The system allows you to shut down or suspend your high performance P45 system and leave the NVIDIA ION chipset and Intel Atom CPU running in low power mode. The video quoted 30 watts which isn’t all that low power unfortunately.

Only downside to this that I can see is the $399 list price. Hopefully more motherboard makers will build a product like this and get the price to come down. What I want is a P55 chipset motherboard and the next generation PineTrail-D Atom system as the second system.

Does gaming support need to be a requirement for broadband?

Team Fortress 2 should be supported by broadband but shouldn't be a requirement

I’m not exactly sure why a debate over whether broadband should be capable of online gaming erupted, but it appears to be a misunderstanding in which some entertainment software executives were needlessly upset. The whole furor came about as AT&T made mention of the word “gaming” once in their FCC filing on how broadband should be defined. AT&T merely pointed out that Satellite broadband technology can’t support online gaming.

Full story »

Temporary workaround for Windows SMBv2 zero-day

The Windows SMBv2 zero-day vulnerability (disclosed vulnerability with no software fix) appears to be more dangerous than initially thought.  The vulnerability does not affect the Release to Manufacturing (RTM) version of Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2, but it does affects Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.  The danger is no longer just a system crash or reboot, it can lead to a full system compromise.

In the absence of a patch, Microsoft released some instructions for disabling SMBv2.  For your convenience, I’ve packaged two REG files that you can download that enable and disable SMBv2 in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.  So until a software patch is available, you need to disable SMBv2 double clicking the disable-SMBv2.reg file and then rebooting.  The workaround does not break your ability to serve files, but it does reduce your SMB file serving speeds down to Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 levels which would result in a moderate decrease in performance.  When the patch becomes available and you have applied the patch, just run the enable-SMBv2.reg file and reboot.