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Comments

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Improv Project, Vivaldi Tablet Officially Dead

Dimwit KDE, Canonical, Mozilla, and GNOME (71 comments)

KDE, Canonical, and GNOME have all made this huge push into stupid design decisions lately. Canonical with Ubuntu Phone/Tablet and Mir, GNOME with GNOME 3 and treating the desktop like a tablet, Mozilla with FirefoxOS, and KDE with this sort of stuff.

You know what I want out of an open source desktop? A DESKTOP! Seriously. I need a good desktop environment for my COMPUTER where I do actual work. I can't write code on a tablet. I can't write papers on a tablet. I can't do serious design work (anywhere, because I'm not a designer, but specifically also not on a tablet).

If I want to use a tablet, I want to use it to play games and watch movies, and Ubuntu/KDE/GNOME tablets aren't going to have Civilization Revolution, Ticket to Ride, Netflix, or Amazon Instant Video any time soon, so any tablet running those operating systems is going to be just a really crippled computer and a useless tablet.

about a month ago
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Artificial Pancreas Shows Promise In Diabetes Test

Dimwit Measure blood directly (75 comments)

It seems as though the big problem with this technology is that it's not measuring blood directly. What are the barriers to placing a sensor more-or-less permanantly inside the body that can test blood directly and the send, via radio or whatever, commands to an external insulin pump to dispense insulin?

I'm guessing "blood clots" is the problem here, but I don't know.

about a month and a half ago
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FWD.us: GOP Voters To Be Targeted By Data Scientists

Dimwit Re:This will hugely backfire... (422 comments)

The Republican Party publishes an official platform. Two of the issues on the official platform are restricting access to abortion (i.e. interfering with a woman's rights to her own body) and opposing same-sex marriage (i.e. interfering with two consenting adults' rights to choose whom they marry)...

So, no, I didn't pull it out of my ass. It's right on their official website.

about a month and a half ago
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FWD.us: GOP Voters To Be Targeted By Data Scientists

Dimwit Re:This will hugely backfire... (422 comments)

Your average GOP voter strongly values their own privacy, but not the privacy of women, homosexuals, Muslims, or immigrants.

about a month and a half ago
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Can Cyborg Tech End Human Disability By 2064?

Dimwit Emotional? (121 comments)

What a brave new world that will be.

about 2 months ago
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Is It Really GPS If It Doesn't Use Satellites?

Dimwit Durability? (298 comments)

Existing GPS systems can be essentially all solid-state. There are no moving parts, and the temperature tolerance can be made to handle pretty extreme tempteratures.

Existing technology isn't going to make something like this durable. I don't know enough abou laser cooling, but that might be the best bet and even it probably has a lot of fairly-easy-to-encounter failure modes.

about 2 months ago
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Mathematical Model Suggests That Human Consciousness Is Noncomputable

Dimwit Re:Retrieving memories causes decay? (426 comments)

It's not true that it has to be supernatural to be noncomputable, unless you agree that physics itself is computable. The jury is still out on that one (although I believe that it will turn out to be true).

about 3 months ago
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Astronomers Calculate How To Spot Life On an Alien Earth

Dimwit Re:Chlorrophyll makes a big assumption (46 comments)

It's not so much a big assumption as it is a starting point. There is probably a biosphere somewhere in the Universe that uses a red or yellow pigment for photosynthesis. The problem is that detecting it at a distance is much harder, because while we might see the spectral signature we couldn't be sure that it's life.

Looking for a biosphere that is very similar to that of Earth makes it much more likely that we'll be able to detect that it is in fact "life" and not something else. While we may miss 99% of the life in the Universe with this approach, if/when we do detect it, our confidence will be much higher.

about 3 months ago
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Canonical (Nearly) Halts Development of Ubuntu For Android

Dimwit I use Ubuntu (55 comments)

I use Ubuntu as my desktop, because while I like Arch and Slackware, I'm too old to spend time futzing with getting backups to work or writing custom trayer configurations or whatever. (And when I finally got everything I wanted on Arch, half of GNOME or KDE was installed anyway, so I didn't really see the point.)

Anyway, you know what I wish Canonical would work on? Ubuntu for Computers. I don't need yet another mobile operating system; Android is there, iOS is there, Windows Phone is there, FirefoxOS is there. There's nothing that Ubuntu Touch is going to offer that isn't done better somewhere else. All it's doing is cannibalizing resources from Ubuntu Desktop and Ubuntu Server. Working on Mir just creates divisions within the open source community; there's nothing wrong with Wayland.

So yeah, Canonical, don't just jump on the mobile bandwagon. You have a core product, focus on it.

about 3 months ago
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OpenBSD 5.5 Released

Dimwit USB Installer! (128 comments)

There's a USB installation image for i386 and amd64! Finally! Dear lord, it's been years. That's as big a deal as the time_t thing for me.

about 3 months ago
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Interviews: Ask J. Michael Straczynski What You Will

Dimwit Rising Stars and Midnight Nation (276 comments)

Once upon a time there was going to be a Rising Stars miniseries/movie. Any word on that? What about more comics in that franchise?

Also, Midnight Nation...any word on a miniseries or movie of that?

(Also, for any Slashdotters who haven't read Rising Stars and Midnight Nation, both are very much worth reading.)

about 4 months ago
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Jesse Jackson To Take On Silicon Valley's Lack of Diversity

Dimwit Dearth of Applicants (397 comments)

I've worked in tech for 15-20 years now. Since about 2005, I've sat on interview panels.

In all that time, I've interviewed maybe three black people (two of whom ended up getting hired). Same with women. It wasn't that we were intentionally ignoring resumes we thought were from black people or women, we just simply did not ever get them.

I went to college at a school that had a large black student body (although it wouldn't be classified under the "Historically Black College" scheme). Looking at their website, the college is 52% white, 27% black, 10% hispanic white, 3% Asian. However, in my CS101 class (~50 students), it was all white and Asian guys and one white girl (who ended up changing majors).

The high school I went to was roughly 50/50 black/white, but my AP Computer Science class in high school was 100% white. There was actually a pretty good split of girls and boys, though (it was the only "computer" class that offered honors credit, so there was an attraction to people who wanted high class-placement even if they weren't interested in CS).

So yeah. While I don't doubt some corporations are biased in their hiring practices, there also just aren't a lot of black of female applicants, and not a lot of black and/or female CS graduates. I don't know how to address that end of the problem.

about 4 months ago
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EV Owner Arrested Over 5 Cents Worth of Electricity From School's Outlet

Dimwit Water (1010 comments)

If he filled up his thermos with water from the bathroom sink, would that be theft as well?

about 8 months ago
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A War Over Solar Power Is Raging Within the GOP

Dimwit Re:Why subsidize? (1030 comments)

I wouldn't mind so much except that the federal government also provides between $20 and $50 billion in subsidies to oil and gas companies.

about 8 months ago
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Apple II DOS Source Code Released

Dimwit Re:They printed off assembler (211 comments)

What game, just out of curiosity? I remember reading about how Ant Attack was developed that way.

about 9 months ago
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HP's NonStop Servers Go x86, Countdown To Itanium Extinction Begins

Dimwit OpenVMS? (243 comments)

Looks like it's the end of the line for OpenVMS as well.

I would pay good, American money, to have OpenVMS open-sourced instead of just languishing like other DEC OS's. Why can't RSTS/E or RSX-11 be free? What could that possibly cost HP? Same with OpenVMS at this point. It's a great system, and I would love to see it available to average joes.

Someone who isn't as lazy as I am should start an "Open Source OpenVMS!" petition.

about 9 months ago
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Wireshark Switches To Qt

Dimwit Re:Props to all sticking it out and trying Qt out! (79 comments)

Someone really needs to explain the appeal of Kubuntu and KDE to me. I just don't get it. It's so *busy*: everything is huge with glowing drop shadows and spinning cursors and animations everywhere. It's also the only desktop environment I've ever sat down at that I couldn't just use immediately - I tried "creating an activity" and was left with a completely blank desktop, not even any panels or anything. There may have been keyboard shortcuts to get out of that situation, but I didn't know them and shouldn't have had to. I tried creating another activity later and the session segfaulted. This was a release version, not a beta or something.

I really want to like KDE, truly. I used KDE on FreeBSD for years, but eventually moved over to CDE on Solaris and then GNOME on Linux. I tried going back to KDE with Kubuntu 13.04 and had the above experience. So someone, please explain what KDE offers that I don't get through GNOME, Unity, XFCE, or Razor...

about 9 months ago
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Nissan's Autonomous Car Now Road Legal In Japan

Dimwit Re:I am all for it (205 comments)

Most state laws (I'm assuming you're in the United States) allow for a DUI conviction if you are in "actual control" of a vehicle. That means if you're asleep drunk in the car and the keys are also in the car, you can be found guilty. If you're parked on private land and drunk, you can be found guilty. If you're in the driver's seat in an automated car and the car could be switched to manual control, you could be convicted of DUI if you're drunk.

about 10 months ago

Submissions

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Practical mathematics for programmers?

Dimwit Dimwit writes  |  about a year ago

Dimwit (36756) writes "The best part about programming is that I can decide that I want a new text editor or a new video game or a new multiprotocol router, and I can write it, and when I'm done, I have a new text editor or video game or multiprotocol router. Mathematics has never been that way for me — I never sit and think "I sure would like to find the area under a curve!" and then come up with a way to do it. So what's a good path for the practical programmer to take towards mathematics? One with goals and problems to solve that aren't the same old boring word problems?"
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Mathematics for Programmers

Dimwit Dimwit writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Dimwit (36756) writes "The best part about programming is that I can decide that I want a new text editor or a new video game or a new multiprotocol router, and I can write it, and when I'm done, I have a new text editor or video game or multiprotocol router. Mathematics has never been that way for me — I never sit and think "I sure would like to find the area under a curve!" and then come up with a way to do it. So what's a good path for the practical programmer to take towards mathematics? One with goals and problems to solve that aren't the same old boring word problems?"
Link to Original Source
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A New Scheme in the Heavens!

Dimwit Dimwit writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Dimwit writes "The R6RS electors have cast their votes, the Steering Committee has counted them, and the results are in: there is a new Scheme out there! Major improvements include a formalized module subsystem, new syntax (you can use square brackets now for clarity!), and many others. It sure made my day."
Link to Original Source

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