Micropolis Was Never Really King, Unfortunately

Micropolis Corp. investors can be thinking only one thing right now: “It’s about time.” After six straight quarters of losses totaling (gulp!) $57 million, the high-end disk-drive maker says it’s about to turn the corner. Honest.

Stuart Mabon, CEO of the Chatsworth, Calif., company, expects a profitable fourth quarter and 1995. Most analysts agree. And Wall Street has taken notice — pushing Micropolis’ shares above $9, from about $7 to $8 in October. And how’s this for a major vote of confidence: An Atlanta investor recently bought more than 500,000 Micropolis shares, boosting his stake in the company to 6 percent. What gives? Micropolis is experiencing strong demand for its new high-capacity drives and is carving out a space in …

26 Mar 2016

Anti Aliasing: Where Would We Be Without It?

To achieve optimum results from digitized data acquisition systems, engineers must keep in mind that they are dealing with the analog world through a sampled-data process. That sampling process imposes restrictions on the input signal spectrum that can be applied to the system’s analog-to-digital converter (ADC). Consequently, an engineer must pay very careful attention to the front-end analog (antialiasing) filtering that precedes any data conversion.

butterworthWhether an engineer designs the filters himself or buys filter modules, he must understand the role a presampling filter plays in a digital signal-acquisition system. When digitally sampling a dc system, a good filter eliminates noise but allows a change in signal to settle out in a reasonable time.

To digitally acquire ac signals, presampling

03 Mar 2016

A Multimedia Chip With Gusto

In the consumer market, target applications can vary over a wide range. These applications can range from low-cost video telephones to high-end electronic products with built-in video instructions.

mm-chipUnlike other compression ICs that consume silicon area with direct and inverse cosine-transform circuits for intraframe or interframe processing and motion prediction, the 7710 performs frame-based compression. Each line within a frame is stored and compressed on a line-by-line basis. Moreover, the chip architecture uses minimal pipelining.

As a result, the processor requires just 128 kbytes or more of video RAM (VRAM). Its I/O latency time in less than 100 [micro-s]. A patented on-chip compression algorithm, contained in compression-code tables, is simpler than the proposed Joint Photography Experts Group (JPEG) standard. With

28 Feb 2016

My Favorite Poet: Lesbia Harford

Lesbia Harford was briefly married to an artist who had an interest in modernism, so she may well have been familiar with some of the early forms of abstract art when she wrote this passage, which obliquely hints at the central theme of the novel. The Invaluable Mystery charts the steps by which a young woman acquires the determination to make her own way in, figuratively, a darkened world. Moreover, the repeated nocturnal descriptions it contains indicate that its author had some appreciation of the sublime. Uncertainty, we can sense, didn’t trouble her.

Yet she also had a very strong appreciation of the quotidian or mundane world. Her novel is once again instructive, for notwithstanding its repeated acknowledgments of the …

22 Feb 2016

Interface Innovation Set The Stage For Storage Speed Hikes

A flurry of product announcements and industry politicking last week added to the growing competition between the IBM-sponsored Serial Storage Architecture (SSA) interface and an enhanced version of Fiber Channel also targeting high-speed storage interfaces.

Hewlett-Packard, Quantum and Seagate Technology–three major disk drive makers in the 3.5-inch OEM market–are backing the Fiber Channel Arbitrated Loop. Last week, the three disk drive majors claimed that more of the pieces necessary to support Fiber Channel–originally a networking specification connecting high-end data processing equipment–for disk attachment will soon be in place.

These pieces include interface chips from the likes of HP, QLogic and Applied Micro Circuits Corp.(AMCC). In addition, a core implementing the FC-AL specification is expected to be available from some …

19 Feb 2016

Shakespeare: Catholic Or Madness?

In 1535, at about the same time Shakespeare’s father John was born, William Tyndale, translator of the Bible into English, was strangled by imperial officers. Henry VIII, who had tried to have him kidnapped, also wanted him silenced. Also in 1535 Henry demanded that Thomas More should swear the Oath of Supremacy declaring that Henry was the head of the Church of England. More refused and was executed; as were Fisher and, among others, the abbots of three of the monasteries that Thomas Cromwell had seized. In 1547-53, under Edward VI, Henry’s son by his third wife, Jane Seymour, Protestantism was doctrinally established. In 1553, Catherine of Aragon’s daughter Mary Tudor succeeded; she restored Catholicism, gently at first, but after …

17 Feb 2016

The Most Common RAID Logical Disk Issues

Disk errors can really put a crimp in productivity.

Disk errors can really put a crimp in productivity.

There are always instances that your computer will encounter G-raid logical disk issues. This kind of problem will lose all your files, especially those that are very much needed for your work or personal life. Although it can be retrieved with the help of a data recovery company, there is still a possibility that these files will never be recovered again. Thus, when there are G-raid logical disk issues, it should be checked as soon as possible in order to prevent losing all the files. Usually, logical disk problems exist when your computer does not turn on or when you hear a clicking, scratching, grinding or any strange noises. This will …

17 Feb 2016

Motivation for rewriting unittest

Two weeks or so ago, I brought up my unittest redesign on the new testing-in-python mailing list. A number of people were upset that in redesigning unittest, I had rejected nose and py.test; Titus Brown even wrote a few blog posts on the subject, in particular taking me to task for ignoring nose.

I’ll be honest: when I started redesigning unittest, I did ignore nose and py.test. I remembered looking at them a long time ago, when I was first getting frustrated with unittest, casting around for a better, more flexible alternative. py.test has no support for extensions and depends on the rest of the py library, so that’s out. nose has plugins, …

12 Feb 2016

Porting setuptools to py3k

I recently spent some time porting setuptools to the py3k-struni branch as a means of testing both 2to3 specifically and the porting process generally. What follows are the notes from the experience. Two things to keep in mind: first, the struni branch, though slated to become the “official” Python 3000 branch, is still very much in flux and currently has 30+ failing tests; needless to say, it’s not an ideal porting target. Secondly, I was attempting this without Python 2.6’s forward compatibility mode, which is still mostly unwritten. As both of these situations change, I’ll keep trying to port more code to test the general readiness of the 2.x -> 3.x migration strategy.

Things to do in your Python 2

08 Feb 2016

Got a list of bullet points as to why Python is better

So Tyler says to me, he says:

I went to the Nashville PHP group last night. The conversation turned to which languages are on the rise, and I threw Python into the mix. Problem is, I had very little ammo to arm myself with. Got a list of bullet points as to why Python is better?

Well, yes and no.

In terms of functionality, there’s very little difference between Perl 5, Python, PHP and Ruby. The reasons to choose one over the other are typically very domain-specific (hence subtle and of little use when fighting religious wars): Perl 5 makes text munging simple by having, e.g., regular expressions as first-class citizens; PHP makes web applications more natural because, well, that’s …

25 Jan 2016