March 24th, 2008


Here's some cheery Monday morning news from Iraq!

4000 soliders dead.

Have we won yet?

That's sarcasm, of course. Iraq is not a war - it's an invasion. You can't "win" an occupation. You can only stack up the bodies. To the sky. Forever. (This is the lesson that the USA (failed to) learn in Vietnam.)

BTW, heard about that new Pentagon report that completely debunks any pre-9/11 Saddam - Al Qaida connection? No WMD, no terrorists... hm! Looks like history will indeed show that Dubya took us into Iraq simply because he wanted to. An aggressive war of military conquest, based on nothing more than his own ego.

In other news, when asked about massive citizen disapproval of the war, Dick Cheney replied: "So?"

And Congress, supposedly liberals, supposedly Democrats, still stands by and intentionally blocks any action that might lead to the impeachment of either of them.

Fixing the unfairness of the TCP congestion control algorithm.

While Jacobson’s algorithm was suitable for the 1980s, cracks began to appear a decade later. By 1999, the first P2P (peer-to-peer) application called Swarmcast began to blatantly exploit Jacobson’s TCP congestion control mechanism. Using a technique called "parallel incremental downloading", Swarmcast could grab a much larger share of the pie at the expense of others by exploiting the multi-stream and persistence loophole. These two loopholes would be used by every P2P application since.

Simply by opening up 10 to 100 TCP streams, P2P applications can grab 10 to 100 times more bandwidth than a traditional single-stream application under a congested Internet link. Since all networks have a bottleneck somewhere, a small percentage of Internet users utilizing P2P can hog the vast majority of resources at the expense of other users. The following diagram illustrates the multi-stream exploit in action where User A hogs more and more bandwidth over User B by opening more and more TCP streams. The large light green cutaway pipe represents a congested network link with finite capacity.

This article is a good history lesson and explanation of van Jacobson's algorithm, and I recommend reading it on that basis alone. It's also 4 fairly short pages, and I do admire brevity.

That said... I pretty much disagree with just about everything the author advocates.

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Gibson evidently believes they have a patent on the very *idea* of a musical video game.

Gibson Guitar is apparently on some litigation warpath. Not only did the guitar maker sue Activision and major retailers that carry Guitar Hero products, but now Gibson is apparently going after original Guitar Hero developer Harmonix, its parent company MTV Networks and publisher/distributor EA because Rock Band allegedly infringes upon the same Gibson patent mentioned in the Guitar Hero suit – pertaining to "technology used to simulate a musical performance."

If there was ever a sledgehammer-to-the-forehead example of how utterly broken our intellectual property system is...

HAY GUYZ, news flash! You can't patent an idea! You can only patent a device, or process. This is just another stupid "spite lawsuit", like when Marvel sued NCSoft over City Of Heroes. As j_b said, "They're just pissed off that they didn't think of it first."

Gibson's going to get laughed out of court, their patent is going to be ruled either irrelevant or invalid, and as Gene Wilder so succintly put it, They will lose, they will get nothing, good day sir!

This ought to be fun to watch. ;]
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