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Ask Slashdot: How To Shop For a Laptop?

Aliotroph Re:mac (732 comments)

No. At leat not in the version of Boot Camp I'm running. The trackpad configuration options are limited. You can disable the tap and you can independently disable two-finger tap.

Looking closely at that configuration screen gives me the impression it was written in a hurry. The checkbox to disable two-finger tapping says "secondary tap." There's no other description and no indication if that affects the two-finger scrolling behaviour.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Shop For a Laptop?

Aliotroph Re:mac (732 comments)

Single-button, multi-touch trackpad. Two two fingers to right-click or scroll. It works better in Windows than any trackpad I've ever used.

The strongest argument I can see against getting a Mac is they're expensive compared to PCs. I got mine second because of that.

more than 2 years ago
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Windows 8 and Screen Resolution: WXGA Still Most Popular

Aliotroph Re:1366x768 (382 comments)

Sure, if you like your games to look squashed. DOS games running at 320x200 were indeed designed with non-square pixels in mind. Playing fullscreen in DOSbox without aspect correction turned on looks awful.

more than 2 years ago
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Weak Typing — the Lost Art of the Keyboard

Aliotroph Re:typing class in school (362 comments)

I'm under 30, but I had the benefit of being taught to type starting when I was 6. Somebody (probably dad) realized my visual impairment was going to lead me to using computers for everything and therefore I should spend a lot of time at school learning to type. It amazes half my friends how fast I can touch type and I'm not really very fast (between 60 and 80 wpm in most cases). My speed was terrible until I took the optional typing course in high school. Perhaps half the course was typing and the rest was about using things like Paint and Word.

At no point in school did they ever really force anyone to learn touch typing. There was a half-hearted effort in grade 4 and that was about it. It amounted to "do this exercise today and you can play Oregon Trail." I was completely appalled at this by the time I was in high school. They were having us do all sorts of assignments with computers, but there was no effort anywhere in education to even try and have a basic standard for computer knowledge.

I learned to type using the same sort of materials my mom used in the 70s. For her it means she can type really fast and uses all kinds of manual tabbing tricks to format documents in MS Word. For me it means I can type faster when looking at something else to copy than I can when looking at the screen.

more than 3 years ago
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The View From the Ground At an Indian Call Center

Aliotroph Re:Intense training? (214 comments)

The weird thing was even though they nagged us about handle times they didn't do much about them. They let me get away with spending half a day fixing some people's machines. If I was the one selling a support contract on a call like that it made my close rate and resolution rate look awesome. They even let me fix stuff we weren't supposed to touch because hardware support had tried and ruined the person's week.

Of course they decided working like this was too expensive and moved our jobs to a centre in the Philippines. Spent the last three months of my job fixing credit card fraud committed by those guys, who were magically still loved by the American customers. It seems they were told to sell something at all costs.

more than 3 years ago
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The View From the Ground At an Indian Call Center

Aliotroph Re:Intense training? (214 comments)

This was often the case when I worked at Dell. If the hardware guys in India were past their quota of dollars in parts to send for the day they would hang up on customers. I worked in paid software support, so that wasn't usually something I saw unless I called on behalf of a customer to get something fixed. The last time that happened to me it resulted in me learning how to exchange a laptop myself by request of my superiors.

That said, a huge number of them really were useless. I got told to confim a part number with hardware support before transferring the lady who wanted it to spare parts. The guy on the other end took my description and part number and then came back with the number for a power cable! The Indians on my team hated these guys too, so it seemed to be partially a corporate culture problem (despite that being a Dell-owned facility) in addition to a regular accent/culture problem.

more than 3 years ago
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Sputnik Moment Or No, Science Fairs Are Lagging

Aliotroph Re:Sputnik? Really? (414 comments)

Please elaborate for us non-Americans.

more than 3 years ago
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Cedega Being Replaced By GameTree Linux

Aliotroph Re:Bad summary (124 comments)

GameTree says their website.

more than 3 years ago
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Lawsuit Shows Dell Hid Extent of Computer Flaws

Aliotroph Re:same thing with nvidia flaws (272 comments)

I worked for them for a while. When we looked up the service tag for a gx270 a screen would appear saying something like, "if this machine shows [list of symptoms] DO NOT TROUBLESHOOT. Send a new mainboard immediately!" It was a fairly long screen IIRC, but I can't remember the rest of it. I didn't see it often because I mostly worked on consumer machines. The funny part was all our workstations were gx260/270.

more than 4 years ago
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Immaculate Conception In a Boa Constrictor

Aliotroph Immaculate Conception? (478 comments)

I thought that referred to Jesus being born without sin rather than to Mary being a virgin.

more than 4 years ago
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Mega Man Designer Explains Japan's Waning Video Game Influence

Aliotroph Re:not just japan (315 comments)

Yeah, I meant to imply the company that made the classic games. It being sold, split, resold, etc. were the basis for the second part of my comment, even though I didn't remember the ultimate fate of the brand. I should have made that clear, but I got lazy. :)

more than 4 years ago
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Mega Man Designer Explains Japan's Waning Video Game Influence

Aliotroph Re:not just japan (315 comments)

Atari is American. Or at least it was. What exactly it is now I don't know, but it isn't the company that made the stuff we loved in the 70s and 80s.

more than 4 years ago
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Ideas For a Great Control Room?

Aliotroph Re:Good lighting (421 comments)

I do complain about the flicker from PAL/NTSC TV. It can't watch PAL TV at all. It's like staring into a strobe for me. This could be because I only have peripheral vision to work with. LCDs are the best thing that ever happened to me.

more than 4 years ago
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Charles Darwin's Best-Kept Secret

Aliotroph Re:Mars? (254 comments)

They need both. This gets overlooked a lot, but plant cells, at least in plants they showed us in high-school biology, needed oxygen too. In an ecosystem like we have, perhaps they use a lot of the oxygen they create, but they need some to start with. Perhaps it's best to start with even simpler life.

more than 4 years ago
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The Doctor's Every Journey

Aliotroph Re:Dr Who and the Daleks, 1965 c Peter Cushing (97 comments)

The two movies with Peter Cushing are remakes of first-Doctor serials, specifically "The Daleks" and "The Dalek Invasion of Earth." Including them would be redundant and confusing. The time travel parts don't even change from the originals except for the framing bits at the start and end.

What they did change was the characters and the nature of both the Doctor and the TARDIS. In the case of the movies, the Doctor was a human called Dr Who, an inventor who created a time machine called TARDIS. Susan was a little kid, Barbara was his other granddaughter and she was dating Ian. The second movie only brought back the Doctor and Susan. They just don't fit at all.

more than 4 years ago
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Inside the Lab of One of the World's Last Holographers

Aliotroph Re:Real-life Merlin (86 comments)

He certainly has the wrong business plan. You can never just go to the President with your new-fangled thing. Presidents don't have time for that. Geeks will like it first. He should perhaps try to lure a few geeks with some cash -- preferably geeks who go on TV. While he is correct that he is established, he probably hasn't been anybody's focus in twenty years. Like all things business, networking will be key.

more than 4 years ago
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ISPs Lie About Broadband "Up To" Speeds

Aliotroph Re:Sneaky, yes. Lies, not quite. (547 comments)

My ISP tries to do this without really saying it. They say we get up to 15 Mb/s, but if it's nowhere near then we can usually get them to put some effort into fixing it. Most of the time we really get speeds between 15 and 20 Mb/s.

more than 4 years ago
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The Future of Tech Support

Aliotroph Re:Kenmore Connect (105 comments)

What sort of capacitor can you not get? Those things always seem easy enough to get in infinite variety.

more than 4 years ago
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ISPs Lie About Broadband "Up To" Speeds

Aliotroph Re:Sneaky, yes. Lies, not quite. (547 comments)

This is true of Doritos, but the last can of Pringles I opened said on the side that there are at least 100 chips in it.

more than 4 years ago

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