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The truth comes out about User Account Control

Microsoft's Windows Vista operating system has been lambasted ever since it was launched for consumers in January 2007. Diehard Windows users balked at the steep system requirements, sometimes sluggish performance, inadequate driver support, and varying products SKUs at multiple price points.

One feature that has caused quite a bit of controversy with consumers has been the User Account Control (UAC) that is included in Windows Vista. UAC prompts nag users for simple operations such as going to device manager, emptying the recycle bin, or installing/uninstalling an application.

David Cross, a product manager responsible for designing UAC, gave the real reason for UAC at the RSA 2008 conference in San Francisco yesterday. "The reason we put UAC into the platform was to annoy users. I'm serious," remarked Cross.

Cross added that Microsoft's unorthodox method to stop users from wreaking havoc with their systems and to stop software makers from making applications that delved too far into the Windows subsystem was a necessary move.

"We needed to change the ecosystem, and we needed a heavy hammer to do it," Cross added. Cross went on to say that although UAC may be seen as an annoyance to some, but its lasting implications are far more beneficial to Vista users. "Most users, on a daily basis, actually have zero UAC prompts."

Many would say that many users have zero UAC prompts on a daily basis because they have already disabled UAC -- not so says Microsoft. According to Cross, 88% of Vista users have UAC enabled and 66% of Windows sessions do not encounter UAC prompts.

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RE: Sluggish Performance
By Some1ne on 4/11/2008 7:28:56 PM , Rating: 2
I have taken several programming classes in college and the professors would always mark us down if we used a double instead of an INT when we were suppose to.

As well they should, and not because you weren't using the most size-efficient approach. Floating point values are imprecise, and should really only be used when your code requires floating-point arithmetic. In all other cases an int/long is better.

If, however, you also get marked down for using a double where a float would have sufficed, or for using a long where and int would have sufficed, then you are getting marked down to space-efficiency reasons.

And also, yes, I believe your general point is correct. Programmers generally do not waste a whole lot of time optimizing the space-complexity of their code, now that machines with gigabytes of RAM have become common. Optimizing for time-complexity is still fairly common however, and generally speaking doing so entails some sort of tradeoff in space-complexity. You could, for example, process all the data in a file by reading only one byte of data into memory at any given time (assuming that there are no interdependencies between the bytes of whatever thing it is you are processing), but it would be much more efficient, in terms of execution time, to allocate a buffer of several KB's or so and periodically read the file data into that. It would use more than 1000 times as much memory, but it also wouldn't take all day to execute.

"The Space Elevator will be built about 50 years after everyone stops laughing" -- Sir Arthur C. Clarke

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