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Comments

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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Assmasher Maybe first you can stop pigeon-holing people... (937 comments)

...by presuming that all atheists are alike.

It's like when atheists are dumb enough to treat all Christians alike, or Muslims, <Insert Religious Stereotype Here>...

about two weeks ago
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The Challenges and Threats of Automated Lip Reading

Assmasher Hasn't someone already done this? (120 comments)

I seem to recall that this was done previously but the conditions had to be good (e.g. sitting facing the camera with good lighting.)

about two weeks ago
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Low-Carb Diet Trumps Low-Fat Diet In Major New Study

Assmasher Re:The diet is unimportant... (588 comments)

I think that generally speaking what you're saying is accurate, but it does depend upon what you do during the day.

I used to run 6 miles every day at lunch (this was when I worked down in Mill Valley/Sausalito so running was fun) and I could eat lots of whatever I wanted - and I did.

How I miss May Lee's kung pao chicken, San Jose La Taqueria (on 4th street San Rafael?) chorizo super burritos, Dave's quesadillas and tamales in Corte Madera, and Max's fries and caramelized brie sandwich.

That stuff would give me a heart attack just looking at it now since I only run when chased by very slow monsters now...

BTW, if you loved Max's on Sundays like I did, I hear it closed.

about a month ago
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Apple Reveals the Most Common Reasons That It Rejects Apps

Assmasher Re:Eh, not quite (132 comments)

Dooood, don't make them angry. I had a hard enough time getting the damn reviewer to actually use the login (Apple/Apple.)

It was rejected TWICE in a row after 3 weeks of waiting because "it appears to require login account information" - despite a VERY clear explanation of how the app works and why you need to login and properly filling out the testing account entries in iTunesConnect, et cetera.

I started to think they were employing monkeys over there.

Just like you, every submission after the first acceptance - ZERO account activity on the apple demo account ;).

about a month ago
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Deputy Who Fatally Struck Cyclist While Answering Email Will Face No Charges

Assmasher Re:yet if we did it (463 comments)

That's exactly the law I am referring to.

about a month ago
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Deputy Who Fatally Struck Cyclist While Answering Email Will Face No Charges

Assmasher Re:yet if we did it (463 comments)

California state law has an explicit provision for 'emergency vehicle' use.

about a month ago
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Deputy Who Fatally Struck Cyclist While Answering Email Will Face No Charges

Assmasher Re:yet if we did it (463 comments)

I believe the opt out is only in relation to the law banning the use of wireless electronic devices. That would mean that only being charged under that statute would potentially allow interpretation of his duties to qualify. Other distracted driving statues and reasonable care would still apply.

about a month ago
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Deputy Who Fatally Struck Cyclist While Answering Email Will Face No Charges

Assmasher Re:yet if we did it (463 comments)

As one would expect given that whites get treated better than any other ethnic group in the U.S.

about a month ago
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If Java Wasn't Cool 10 Years Ago, What About Now?

Assmasher Re:What's the point? (511 comments)

This.

I've written services/daemons using Qt simply to make it easily extensible because the framework I built was multi-process with IPC and each process could be heavily multi-threaded.

Qt abstracted away a lot of things that would have made the project difficult to build on many *nix platforms.

about a month ago
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If Java Wasn't Cool 10 Years Ago, What About Now?

Assmasher Re:What's the point? (511 comments)

One of the overlooked advantages with using Java on the server/middleware side is that long running processes in real production environments often have to deal with memory fragmentation, with C++ this is often a very serious, and sometime virtually impossible situation to deal with (writing a pre-allocating memory manager is a non trivial task and you have to worry about people misusingit.) In Java (which I don't personally enjoy working in, but can appreciate), this issue is, for the most part, gone - and in those rare cases where you have to directly intervene, it is trivial to do so.

Given the skill of the average "I work at a bank building IFX/OFX software" developer, I'd rather they stuck to Java...

about a month ago
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If Java Wasn't Cool 10 Years Ago, What About Now?

Assmasher Re:What's the point? (511 comments)

I can't use a statically typed language without being constantly pelted with reminders of their limitations. No, you can't compile that, you didn't use quite the right punctuation in the type name. Sorry, I couldn't protect you from that null pointer, even though I have decades of research and all the source code available to me. Oh, you want a type that could be one of several types? Have fun with those runtime downcasts, or null pointers, or whatever.

Personally, it sounds like you want to be as sloppy as you like... Nobody should be protecting you from null pointers except yourself.

about a month ago
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If Java Wasn't Cool 10 Years Ago, What About Now?

Assmasher Re:What's the point? (511 comments)

I don't particularly care for Java primarily because it really is verbose, but the reason Java is so prevalent is that it is an excellent middleware language solution that made it possible in the late 90's and early aughts for companies that would never have managed to build these systems with C++ (just not enough C++ people who don't hang themselves and your company 5 times a day.)

You could argue that if they couldn't do it with C++ they shouldn't have been doing it anyhow, but there'd be hundreds of thousands fewer jobs in the software industry as a result.

about a month ago
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33 Months In Prison For Recording a Movie In a Theater

Assmasher Re:The real crime here (465 comments)

Wait... is this in lieu of 'Federal pound you in the ass' prison? ;)

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Assmasher Re:C++ is not the language you start with (548 comments)

You cynical old bastard ;).

I know what you mean though. It is incredibly difficult to assess the valuable from the detritus.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Assmasher Re:Pick a different job. (548 comments)

Apparently wisdom doesn't come with age...

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Assmasher Re:Pick a different job. (548 comments)

Atlanta too.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Assmasher Re:C++ is not the language you start with (548 comments)

That's like saying that the way to learn how to swim is to dump everyone in deep water and see who takes to it naturally...

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

Assmasher Re:'weed out' classes (548 comments)

Ours was first semester of second year, computer engineering and assembly language. We used an old MIPS chip. Started with 27 people including 3 women, finished with 6. I had the highest grade in the course, a B-. It was rough, but not necessarily because of the topic - more that we covered so much so quickly.

about a month ago

Submissions

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U.S. Rollout of the flagship HTC One delayed until end of April

Assmasher Assmasher writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Assmasher (456699) writes "The widely praised and anticipated arrival of HTC's flagship Android smartphone, the HTC One, has apparently been delayed until the end of April.

From the manufacturer: "We are currently manufacturing the new HTC One and arranging delivery dates with our US carrier and retail partners. When we originally announced the new THC One, we communicated a March availability date but we unfortunately will not meet this date in the US. We now expect to roll out the new HTC One in North America before the end of April."

How this bodes for HTC's troubled and declining smartphone marketshare remains to be seen, but rest assured that Samsung will do everything in its considerable power to get the Galaxy S4 on shelves in time to make the HTC One's debut as damp a squib as possible."

Link to Original Source
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R/C F16 Jet with realtime pilot view

Assmasher Assmasher writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Assmasher (456699) writes "Toys are infinitely cooler these days than they were when we were kids. While we had to subside on crappy Lego houses and weak Nerf guns, youngsters now get to craft accurate models of the Millennium Falcon and play with a foam arsenal that would make the CIA blush with envy.

The same goes for remote-controlled vehicles. We've already seen exactly how much fun can be had with a point-of-view camera, an RC Jeep and a little time. Now another crafty RC aficionado has applied the same camera tech to a remote-controlled F16 fighter jet.
There aren't words to describe how awesome this is."

Link to Original Source
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Directed Energy Weapon Downs Ballistic Missile

Assmasher Assmasher writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Assmasher (456699) writes "Boeing's Airborne Laser successfully destroyed a sub launched ballistic missile on Thursday, February 11th, 2010. "This was the first directed energy lethal intercept demonstration against a liquid-fuel boosting ballistic missile target from an airborne platform" reported the Missile Defense Agency Reuters. It should be noted that destroying a liquid fueled ballistic missile is generally considered easier than killing a solid fueled equivalent due to the relative fragility of the fueling and other systems."
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Ethics of hidden installations?

Assmasher Assmasher writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Assmasher (456699) writes "The latest Java update from SUN showed up on my desktop this morning and in the process of installing it I did what I usually do and selected the 'advanced install' checkbox on the Java Setup UI. I do this for the same reason that most of you do — to ensure that I'm only installing what I expect to install (although this can be a false sense of security.) In the past Google has often 'hidden' the installation of their toolbar in other applications' update/install packages, and recently Apple did the same with iTunes and Safari. I find these types of things distasteful because they're 'sneaky.' Unless you choose to view the installation options or choose some 'advanced' option you are possibly unaware or only marginally aware of what's being put on your machine. Lo and behold, the SUN update I just installed tried to install OpenOffice under the guise of updating my Java runtime! Now, I don't have anything against OpenOffice, in fact, I have two machines I use it on, but I don't want it on this one. Out of curiosity, how do people feel about this type of thing?"

Journals

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Linux's biggest problem need no longer be a problem

Assmasher Assmasher writes  |  more than 10 years ago

I have to say that everytime I log into my Slackware or MDK 9.2 systems, I can't help but feel cleaner, more streamlined. Almost as if the sedentary developer's tire I've been growing for the past 5 years seems to disappear (somewhat.)

I've been working with Win32 and various *nix flavors since the early nineties (yeah, back in the Win32 'S' days, and early NT, lol) and I've always felt that way when using a *nix machine.

Cleaner, somehow healthier, as if I know that there is NO extraneous crap going on in the background, I can control everything if I wish and nothing gets installed that I don't wish to be installed.

I'm beating around the bush of the subject I really wish to diarize, but I just want to convey the actual 'feeling' of using Linux for me. Now, unlike many Slashdotters, I don't get hives when I run Win2K or XPPro; however, it just isn't the same. I feel like I'm always watching out for things when I get mail, or visit sites, or pulling things off the web to view offline. I just seem to always be looking over my shoulder and checking my system for spyware, trojans, making sure my AV software is up to date (even though it is set to 'automatic updating' I still feel I have to watch it.)

Basically this means I, later than many others, feel that Linux is TRULY ready to make the foray into desktop dominance. Server side? Not an issue, it is already there. The only reason M$ has ANY server installations is because companies haven't abandoned the M$ desktop yet. Believe me, there'll never be an IT department where the desktop machines run Linux and the IT servers run M$ OSes! LOL.

This brings me to the sticking point. What is it that keeps Linux from absolutely demolishing Windows XP (et al) right now?

Interfaces? No way. They're all pretty close to the same now.

Development tools? Not anymore. While we don't have an exact counterpart to VB (well, we sort of do), C/C++ development is trivial on Linux now.

Multimedia support? No way.

Stability? LOL! No way.

Security? While we're not as secure as we all like to pretend we are, we're still parsecs ahead of M$.

Ease of use? Not any more, with the exception of 'latest and greatest' hardware which is not a reflection on Linux but the marketplace. By this I mean that if we resolve the issues I do think we still have, this problem goes away.

Available quality software? Somewhat, many of the most important areas are covered by Linux, but there is still a gap between what kind of quality you can get on XP as opposed to Linux.

Now we get to the three things I believe are holding Linux back from replacing Microsoft's dominance of the desktop.

(1)Dependencies
(2)Games
(3)Closed Source Stigma

Number 1, our dependency issues. I'm sure everyone has run into this one. "I can't have both programs installed and usable at the same time because their dependencies conflict." It is wonderful that there are a myriad of distributions, and it is wonderful that most of them include a default installation of development tools (unless you specify not to); however, we cannot in all seriousness consider our dependency problems to be a non-issue because users can just 'build the software' themselves. This causes havoc for numerous reasons. (A)People cannot simply rely on downloading and installing software (although this is often successful) through urpmi or other package management systems because there often need to be different packages for different distributions and also it is shockingly common to find to applications which cannot run at the same time because they require different versions of (for example) glibc. (B)Relying on our current model for dependency resolution (building it yourself) keeps commercial closed source products (such as games) from seeing linux as an attractive deployment environment. They sure as hell don't want to expose the source code for 5 million dollars (a normal dev cost for a modern game) worth of software to the world for free...

(2)Games, games, and games. Games are CRITICAL to wide acceptance of Linux. Most kids through their teenage years, that's all they care about (plus Instant Messaging.) Dependencies are a concern for games, but shouldn't be a serious one as most games can solve this through static linking; however, meeting driver requirements (such as simply having hardware acceleration of OpenGL) is still a potentially tricky issue for the vast majority of linux users. This is an issue mostly (imho) on the side of the video card companies (i.e. the install process for ATI's drivers to allow for DRI support) and somewhat on the kernel/driver side (as in 'perhaps there are some changes to facilitate making this more idiot proof for companies like ATI/nVidia.)

(3)The stigma automatically assigned to closed source products on Linux. Now Linux and OSS go hand in hand; however, the 'religious' nature of the many open source zealots actively discourages smaller companies, who don't know if they do or do not wish to support linux, from feeling a level of comfort and community acceptance. MAKE ANY SOFTWARE COMPANY WELCOME IN THE LINUX COMMUNITY, even (don't laugh [too hard]) Microsoft. We may wish for Utopia; however, many companies who don't have the deep pockets (nor political motivations) of IBM are not willing to give away software that they've paid their developers to produce. Don't shun them for this. Don't disparage them for this. THANK THEM for making software for us.

I really think that with the egregiously cheap costs of massive amounts of memory and HDD space available nowadays, static linking as much as possible would remove many of the problems associated with dependencies which plague our fine operating system.

Yes that makes upgrading more of a chore in the sense that each application would need to be upgraded/patched; however, we (now) tend to break more applications through upgrading an *.so than we fix.

Let's do what we can to make Linux distributions a level gaming platform. In other words, (not that I've got the cojones to do this) we should have our own 'DirectX' of sorts. While we have systems that handle parts of these, I would argue that these should be Linux ONLY tools for the same reason that DirectX is M$ ONLY. It is a key component in the war to bring games to an OS.

Lastly, let's cut back on the rhetoric about 'evil empires', 'Windoze people are stupid', 'M$ is evil', 'Open Source is the only way', and simply take the high road in all instances. Why? Because we KNOW Linux is better. It doesn't matter if some WinTroll comes and says "Linux is sh*t" and then we retort with an educated yet vitriolic assasination of everything and everyone windows because we've likely scared some people off about ourselves in doing so. Let's do some "turn the other cheek" reasoning. I've lost count of the times I've talked to another techie who was looking into deploying Linux and told me that they found the ngs and people disturbing and disparaging, even rude.

My $0.000002 for today

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Slashdot, no longer a free thinking demographic...

Assmasher Assmasher writes  |  more than 10 years ago

Sadly, a once great bastion of unfettered thinking for the IT world (and occasionally beyond) has become the stronghold for anti-Windows/anti-MS zealotry. How many posts in the past two years have been anti-MS? How many have been subjectively derogatory of Windows (and other MS products)?

Now, because Slashdot is (or at least used to be) for the nerd in all of us, of course there will be MS bashing and Windoze castigation; however, the level and the obvious subjectivity of those dogging anything MS related is beyond the bounds of reason.

Then, again, most of these subjective posts come from people very closely associated with Slashdot (for example, roblimo) ergo Slashdot appears to have become less of an editorial synopsis of cool world news and more of a welcome home to Linux zealots who can't seem to install Mozilla on Windows.

Now, I am a Linux, Solaris, Irix, and Win2k/XP Pro professional developer, so I am indeed disheartened by seeing my absolute favorite website in all the world (slightly ahead of consumption junction ;)) become a Linux school yard bully.

Just look at the invective and stupidity in people's posts when someone posts something that can even be remotely construed as not anti-Microsoft. LOL, not even pro-Microsoft. Apparently the absence of a deep and abiding hatred of the Redmond giant makes you a traitor to everything *nix on Slashdot.

Worst of all, the moderator scoring, lol. I read a very logical, objective post by someone in a thread about stability which was pro-NT/2K and the zealots punished the poster with such ridiculous penalties as 'off topic', lol. Maybe there should be an age requirement for posters? Most of the zealots appear to be 13 years old.

Sh*t, more to say on this later, build done...

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