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Computers and the OBS

This fascinating series is a combination of historical seafaring, swashbuckling adventure, and high technological science-fiction. Join us in a discussion!
Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by Loren Pechtel   » Mon May 13, 2019 9:57 pm

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phillies wrote:
Loren Pechtel wrote:All modern mass storage devices have processors without which you're not going to read what's on them.


My DVDs have processors?


That's storage media, not a storage device. The drive that reads them certainly has it's own processor.
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by DMcCunney   » Thu May 16, 2019 6:00 pm

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Louis R wrote:There are a number of reasons it was IBM and the Seven Dwarfs, and being a marketing monster was far from the main one.
The biggest reason was probably money. This sort of thing is a classic capital intensive business. It cost an enormous and steadily growing amount to do the R&D to produce newer generations of machines. Smaller players got squeezed out because they simply couldn't afford to do it. The market for their machines wasn't big enough to generate the revenue needed to get the capital.
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by Michae   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:50 am

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I think the Punishment of Schueler was an after the fact addition to the Book of Schueler written and inserted by Chihiro, who had edit access to the master copies of the Writ in the Temple.


If that is the case I'd very like to know how Chihiro got edit access to begin with,as if this was my document I'd lock down editing privileges for anyone but myself. If it does need to be edited I'd have to approve the edit myself,after viewing the material that would be added,or removed via said edit.
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by dobriennm   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 12:38 pm

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Michae wrote:
I think the Punishment of Schueler was an after the fact addition to the Book of Schueler written and inserted by Chihiro, who had edit access to the master copies of the Writ in the Temple.


If that is the case I'd very like to know how Chihiro got edit access to begin with,as if this was my document I'd lock down editing privileges for anyone but myself. If it does need to be edited I'd have to approve the edit myself,after viewing the material that would be added,or removed via said edit.


But Chihiro was the Church Historian, in other words, the Church records keeper. As such, he would automatically have a high level access to anything submitted to the records.

And even if a document was locked down by the author, there's undoubtedly a way to copy the words to a new document (screen image -> OCR scan -> new unlocked copy). And again, Chihiro is the Church Historian, he gets ultimate say in what goes into the record (particularly the WRITTEN record that ordinary folk see).

And beyond that,there's all the ways computer records can be compromised by people with evil intentions. While one would hope that our descendants will be better at it then us, between the "nothing's idiot-proof because idiots are so ingenious" and "evil people are ingenious too", I'm pretty sure locking down a document will still be impossible. Particularly to people with high level access.
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by DMcCunney   » Fri Jun 28, 2019 8:00 pm

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Michae wrote:
I think the Punishment of Schueler was an after the fact addition to the Book of Schueler written and inserted by Chihiro, who had edit access to the master copies of the Writ in the Temple.
If that is the case I'd very like to know how Chihiro got edit access to begin with,as if this was my document I'd lock down editing privileges for anyone but myself. If it does need to be edited I'd have to approve the edit myself,after viewing the material that would be added,or removed via said edit.

Chihiro was the one who actually composed the Holy Writ, under Langhorne's direction. He interviewed the Archangels whose Books became part of the Writ to get the content that would go into their Books, but how much of any book the Archangel whose Book it was actually wrote is a good question. Presumably, they reviewed the content for accuracy, since it would be instructions for the colonists in the future, and signed off on what Chihiro wrote, but he was the one who composed it.

And given his position, he would have edit access to the master copies of the Writ, and would be in a position to make after the fact changes. Note, for example, that the Books of Chihiro and Schueler were not in the pre-Armageddon Reef copy of the Writ in Commodore Pei's downloads for Nimue, that Langhorne had ordered produced and signed off on. Those Books were added after the Rakurai strike that killed Shan Wei and her folks, and turned the Alexandria enclave into Armageddon Reef.

In an exercise like that, someone would have final oversight and approval over just what got published, with the ability to edit the final published work. Originally, that would be Langhorne, who ordered the creation of the Holy Writ in the first place as part of his plan to lock Safehold into a permanent pre-industrial state. After Langhorne's death, it became Chihiro, as Assistant Administrator and legal successor to Langhorne. The various Archangels would not have the power to lock down their Books and prevent after the fact edits. (And they would likely see no reason they would need to do so.)

If my suspicion is correct, and Schueler did not write the Punishment that became part of his Book, he can't have been happy about it, but what could he actually do? We don't know precisely when the Punishment got added to his book, but Chihiro was in firm control at that point, and opposing him would have been a good way to get dead too. He'd have to play a longer game which wouldn't end till after he and Chihiro were both dead of natural causes. I think the Testimony of Schueler was part of Schueler's longer game.
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Dennis
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by SCC   » Sat Jul 06, 2019 6:23 pm

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Dilandu wrote:* While mechanical or hydraulic computers are perfectly possible, their speed is utterly pathetic in comparison with electronic. It would literally took longer that the Universe existence to run complex programs on mechanical computers.

GURPS Steam-Tech actually has a good line on this:"And as for clock speed. . . well, we’re talking actual clock gears."
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by sonex   » Sun Jul 07, 2019 4:53 pm

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Reminds me of doing software for the Government(military).
:lol: :mrgreen: :ugeek:

Brigade XO wrote:Years ago I was tasked with looking at new account activity in a bank which was implimenting a cross selling program within the bank. Long story but the way to collect the data was to modify the existing new account entry forms (think input form filled out in the branch by the person opening the account and what accounts were opened at the same time). There were all sorts of challenge- which Sr. Management got very annoyed about- but to do this there had to be a seperate computer run to look at the data. In this case it was that the data from the imput forms had to be run a second time (weekly) to be able to pull the cross-sell data from what was done. The data entry (centralized) for new accounts was the challange because the system wasn't set up or optimized to collect what was wanted.
What had to happen was the operations department had to pull all the data and then put it onto hard drives- at the time "Bernulie Boxes" which then had to be consolidated and then run separately. The computer side had to do this in what would otherwise be down time...sure, down time...so the time had to be blocked out and, once the data was gathered, multiple drives worth of take had to be run and then the output- printouts had to be made. We had to look at several things but that meant that they had to run the thing at least twice...once for each report...because what we were told we had to know couldn't be done in a single run. Too many variables and it was the relationship between what was being opened vs what was sold vs the ratio of cross sale of accounts/services/products at each time an account was sold/opened.
The result was NOT what the boss wanted. Not because of the cumbersome method of extrating the data- they apparently didn't care what we had to do to gather compile and produce the reports. What they wanted to see was what was the ratios of cross sales.
There was no way short of modifying the existing software -which they were not prepared to do till the concept was proven....and, of course that the new account people were meeting the goals set. So, no, modern computers at the bank in the mid '80s, were not up to the task as the software was written. There was a lot of extra work. It turns out the concept- as understood by the people who demanded it be instituted- wasn't going to work.
Turns out that the traget numbers, which were given to us, came from another bank which had developed the cross-sell program. Oh, they told a good story and that they were doing a massivly good job at cross selling services and accounts. The problem- that the boss didn't know and apparently didn't come across in the presentation of the results of the other bank which gave it at a banking converence - didn't include that this was a limited program to a select bunch of branches in areas of high new account growth from new businesses comming into various urban locations AND each of those branches had special New Account centers in those branches with people trained to add all the bells and whistles and products that could be paired/attached, joined to accounts.
Since we were not operating like that our numbers were "terrible". No where close to what the presenting bank was presenting. We, on the other hand, were doing this with (in the branches in the program) were measuring the number of accounts and services added at thte same time to any new account. So instead of Mr or Mrs NEW customer opening an entire range of NEW accounts at a NEW bank for them, we were also getting any existing customer adding something they wanted/needed but......much of the time it was one or perhaps two new things to an existing and often mature relationship with multiple accounts and services already with the bank.....so they were not candidates for all those auxiliary and related services as they alreay had then. Opps
Back to that old adage about never telling the boss that their higly touted and massivly important project carried a number of fatal flaws....not the least was that it was a case of the other bank was cherry picking where the program was run and NOT dealing with established customers...only people who essentialy transfering entire relationships in blocks of accounts and services.

If you are not asking the right questions or designing somebody else's version of something without knowing the actual parameter of what the other company was doing your are going to look very bad.......bosses NEVER are to be the ones makeing that mistake. Even when they very specifialy tell you what and how to do something along with where you are going to do it, it's NEVER their fault.
Project fail, bosses blame others and go on to something else.....but they sure don't forget that somebody has to be suitably punished for their idea having to be swept under the rug.It's even worse when they have been told and then increase the size and scope of the program. There is a paper trail. They hate that. Particularly when it becomes clear that they ignored the recommenations on what needs to be changed.

Hopefully Merlin and company won't have that problem.
Honor Harrington and Safehold nut.
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Re: Computers and the OBS
Post by sonex   » Sun Jul 07, 2019 5:27 pm

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DMcCunney wrote:
jgnfld wrote:snip

But thanks for the mention of the Xerox Sigma machines. I had forgotten that Xerox had once made things classifiable as mainframes. When I was involved, you had IBM and the BUNCH - Burroughs, Univac, NCR, Control Data, and Honeywell. Xerox was already out of that end of the business, as was RCA and several others.

snip
Dennis


Brings back some memories! I worked with IBM 704s and the many derivatives of these scientific processing computers. Then a Univac, and several iterations of Control Data machines. Also a short time on an RCA used for offline printing. Then a super computer, followed by Macintosh PC! Oh, also a VAX and an off the shelf super PC. Lots of fun, now retired for 27+ years. :D
Honor Harrington and Safehold nut.
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