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    Being poor
    • If you’re poor, what might have been a minor annoyance, or even a major inconvenience, becomes something of a disaster. Your hard drive crashes? Who’s going to pay for the recovery of its data, not to mention the new computer? I’m not playing solitaire on this machine; the hard drive holds my work, virtually my life. It is not a luxury for me but a necessity. I need dental work. Anybody got $10,000? Dentists are not a luxury. Dental disease can make you seriously ill. Lose your cellphone? What may be a luxury to some is a necessity to me. Without that telephone and that computer, my life as I have known it would cease to exist. Not long after, so would I. I am not eager for that to happen. Need to go to a funeral hundreds of miles away? Who pays for the plane ticket? In the case of the funeral, my nephew paid for the plane ticket. My daughter and son-in-law paid for the dental work. Sometimes, I find it deeply humiliating that I am dependent on such kindnesses when I would prefer that the kindnesses flow the other way.

      Being poor is knowing how hard it is to stop being poor.

      Being poor is seeing how few options you have.

    8 comments 9 comments Vitaliy_KiselevNovember 17Last reply - November 20 by ninetto Subscribe to this blog
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    4K : TVs General State
    • part of 4K series

      What is the state of current 4K TV market?

      HDMI. Around 90% of all owned TVs have only HDMI 1.4 and do not have support for HEVC playback. Read - they can play only up to 2160p30 in H.264, same 30Hz restrictions remain if you want to connect it to player or PC.

      Market. Around 80% of models offered have same restrictions, only exceptions are new LG, Samsung and some Sony models. All largest Chinese low end offerings still have restrictions.

      Future. Actual support for 10-bit, extended dynamic range and rec 2020 are absent. Some TVs can decode this videos and try to adjust to their usual panels.

      OLED. OLED TVs are still present in premium sector and do not have 4K resolution in consumer market.

      Marketing. Still focused on StupidTV features (in same horrible state mostly) and local dimming options in higher end sets. Almost all manufacturers do not make TVs with proper backlight focusing on thin edge lit models. Direct LED now is mostly territory of low end sets where very few leds are used.

    14 comments 15 comments Vitaliy_KiselevNovember 17Last reply - December 5 by Vitaliy_Kiselev Subscribe to this blog
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    4K : Playback
    • Note! I'll be updating this post and adding details.

      Current state in very brief format.

      I assume that you have modern notebook, preferably with separate GPU present,
      or modern 4 CPU core desktop, preferably with external GPU card.

      • 4K H.264 playback is usually not a problem for any modern system, most cards support DXVA2 acceleration of 4K playback (including Intel ones)
        • Best 4K DXVA2 support is by Intel and NVidia, worst - by AMD (only in latest 2014 year cards).
      • 4K H.265 playback can be real issue, you need either hybrid optimized decoder with fast 4 core CPU or add also latest GPU (like Nvidia 9xx)
        Issue with latest cards that HEVC decoders are still hybrid, not specialized hardware part.

      Most frequently used decoders for H.265 - LAV and Strongene

      Links of interest:

    8 comments 9 comments Vitaliy_KiselevNovember 15Last reply - December 4 by Vitaliy_Kiselev Subscribe to this blog
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    Unmanageable Complexity: Games
    7 comments 8 comments Vitaliy_KiselevNovember 14Last reply - December 1 by Vitaliy_Kiselev Subscribe to this blog
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    The hipster effect: When anticonformists all look the same
    • In such different domains as statistical physics and spin glasses, neurosciences, social science, economics and finance, large ensemble of interacting individuals taking their decisions either in accordance (mainstream) or against (hipsters) the majority are ubiquitous. Yet, trying hard to be different often ends up in hipsters consistently taking the same decisions, in other words all looking alike. We resolve this apparent paradox studying a canonical model of statistical physics, enriched by incorporating the delays necessary for information to be communicated. We show a generic phase transition in the system: when hipsters are too slow in detecting the trends, they will keep making the same choices and therefore remain correlated as time goes by, while their trend evolves in time as a periodic function. This is true as long as the majority of the population is made of hipsters. Otherwise, hipsters will be, again, largely aligned, towards a constant direction which is imposed by the mainstream choices. Beyond the choice of the best suit to wear this winter, this study may have important implications in understanding dynamics of inhibitory networks of the brain or investment strategies finance, or the understanding of emergent dynamics in social science, domains in which delays of communication and the geometry of the systems are prominent.

    2 comments 3 comments Vitaliy_KiselevNovember 13Last reply - November 14 by maxr Subscribe to this blog
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