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Comments

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New Microsoft Garage Site Invites Public To Test a Wide Range of App Ideas

Dr. Evil Re:Make an app, then see if it has a market?? (72 comments)

Google Wave could have stuck around as a D&D app.

I like these projects, they have a "throw it on the wall and see if it sticks." None of it is going to stick, but we'd never have had Clippy or Comic Sans if it wasn't for MS Bob.

... on second thought, MS shouldn't try to innovate.

yesterday
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Apple 1 Sells At Auction For $905,000

Dr. Evil Re:Steve who? (81 comments)

Steve Job was friends with Steve Wozniac, they're two normal guys who get a lot of strange mail. They live next to Mike Roe, the founder of Mikeroesoft.

2 days ago
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The Largest Ship In the World Is Being Built In Korea

Dr. Evil Re:Ho-lee-crap (273 comments)

It wasn't long ago that South Korea wasn't so advanced, and Daewoo was corrupt.

The national identity has been trying to raise standards in everything, but it still has horrible reminders of its recent past. The Sewoul disaster where hundreds died needlessly, the subway crash where 200 people died, the recent collapse of a sidewalk grate where 16 concert goers just... died.

By "national identity" I mean the health, safety and anticorruption standards are considered part of the national identity and distinct from the standards of many neighbouring countries.

In the past 20 years Korea has been rebuilding everything and has good standards. These stories are making the country obsessive over safety and quality, but there's still junk from the recent past, or people who are wrapped in nepotism and corruption who shouldn't be responsible for anything involving public safety, but can't be removed.

As long as the ship builders are not part of that past, then it's a boon for the country and another milestone for Korea's advancement.

4 days ago
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CSS Proposed 20 Years Ago Today

Dr. Evil Re:Wrong (180 comments)

"The day I found out you can use a 1x1 transparent GIF to fill any space by using "width=xx, height=yy" in the tag, was the greatest day of my life."

Things will get better.

about two weeks ago
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London Unveils New Driverless Subway Trains

Dr. Evil Re:I've been wondering why this took so long (127 comments)

It's kind of insane that the unions are such a burden to transit, that it's easier to accept the safety risks and enormous costs of driverless trains than to accept a non-union driver.

about two weeks ago
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Why Do Contextual Ads Fail?

Dr. Evil Re:Hardly surprising (249 comments)

haha, sorry to hit a nerve.

I'm speaking from the marketer's perspective, and totally hypothetically. I'm pretty sure I've got what you're saying: you want nothing to do with them because they've already violated your trust.

They're already keeping a profile on you. It's probably renewing with your IP and cookies and not actually linked to your identity. You're already contributing to your profile by blocking ads. You've said to them that their medium is so offensive and useless to you that you're doing everything in your power to avoid it.

They know there are lots of people who do this. Right now your search results are tainted with SEO crap and reviews are stacked with shills. The advertisers are trashing your information sources to try to sell you stuff. The only reason you would buy anything from them would be because you couldn't find the information you were looking for and took a shot at thier product out of frustration.

It's only a matter of time before the ad blockers stop working. Many ads are already included as part of the content and are difficult to filter. Some sites detect adblockers and refuse to show their content. It's not technically complex to circumvent all adblockers. Don't serve the ads from the CDN, but instead have the server embed it in the CMS, and randomize some of the content.

I'm just suggesting that they may have never lost your trust if they gave you good content about their products rather than limiting themselves to car-commercial and magazine-like mindless impressions.

about two weeks ago
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Why Do Contextual Ads Fail?

Dr. Evil Re:Hardly surprising (249 comments)

IMHO, this should be part of your profile. When it comes time for you to purchase something, instead of getting some flashy ad in your face, you would get a pile of specs veted by a third party.

If the product doesn't stand up to comparison in the specs, then they shouldn't bother advertising to you. If the product does stand up, it's an easy sell and well worth the effort for them to send you the ad.

Instead... sadly, they send you crap and you fight to tell them that you're not interested in their jingle, bluster or shiny copy.

about two weeks ago
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Apple Sapphire Glass Supplier GT Advanced Files For Bankruptcy

Dr. Evil Re:Possible sequence (171 comments)

Bill Gates? is that you?

about three weeks ago
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Bugzilla Bug Exposes Zero-Day Bugs

Dr. Evil Re:Headline does not match subject (34 comments)

You get administrative rights, it's in the Checkpoint report in the article: http://www.checkpoint.com/blog...

Analysis by Check Point security researchers revealed how this particular vulnerability could be exploited by attackers:
1.The bug enables unknown users to gain administrative privileges
2.By using these admin credentials, attackers can then view and edit private and undisclosed bug details. Software bug tracking data is typically closely guarded as it exposes software vulnerabilities and known issues
3.Furthermore, this access allows attackers to exploit design weaknesses, or even irreversibly destroy bug data, slowing down development

And have info about their disclosure:

September 29th – Vulnerability discovered and verified by Check Point security researchers
September 30th – Report submitted to the Bugzilla team
September 30th – Acknowledgement and confirmation of vulnerability and severity received by Mozilla
September 30th – Bugzilla team privately shared preliminary patch with prominent Bugzilla installations
October 6th – Security advisory and final patch released

The Checkpoint article is a lot more professional than the Krebs article No jabs at FOSS either.

This looks like a major company which uses FOSS (IIRC, SPLAT is a Linux-based-platform) made a contribution in discovering a vulnerability in common software.

about three weeks ago
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Marriott Fined $600,000 For Jamming Guest Hotspots

Dr. Evil Re:Hospitality (278 comments)

Point taken. My outrage is misdirected.

Mariott + jamming hotspots filled me with rage.

about three weeks ago
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Marriott Fined $600,000 For Jamming Guest Hotspots

Dr. Evil Hospitality (278 comments)

This shit is why I strongly prefer AirBnB or other alternative forms of hospitality.

I was at a hotel in London and found out that "Free wifi" meant it was freely available to reach the paid gateway. Sleezery seems to be in all large chains in large cities. You would think the high premium on staying there, and the economy of scale of the size of the hotel would mean that it's easier to provide good service to guests.

By contrast, with AirBnB you'll probably get secure, unrestricted residential wifi, or even an ethernet jack to plug into. Sure you might not, and you might not get a clean place. But there's no guarantee of cleanliness at the Mariott either, and you're certain not to get a free Internet connection.

about three weeks ago
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Will Apple Lose Siri's Core Tech To Samsung?

Dr. Evil Re:Do people actually use Siri? (161 comments)

Oh and it's actually amazing at adding columns of numbers. No need to take your eyes off the paper. E.g., "What's 34+52+1324+53+6+23+11+43..."?

For smaller calculations, it's ridiculous.

about three weeks ago
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Will Apple Lose Siri's Core Tech To Samsung?

Dr. Evil Re:Do people actually use Siri? (161 comments)

I can take notes with it, read (and carefully send) texts and call people while stuck in bumper to bumper traffic.

It's not perfect, but better than nothing.

about three weeks ago
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iOS Trojan Targets Hong Kong Protestors

Dr. Evil Not much need to jailbreak IOS (72 comments)

I'm considering jailbreaking my iPhone to be able to run git. Otherwise... I just haven't had the need.

Android's a different story. You need to root your phone so that you can firewall your flashlight app.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Multimedia-Based Wiki For Learning and Business Procedures?

Dr. Evil Videos... (97 comments)

"Here are 20 videos detailing stupid procedures you need to go through to request access to customers' systems/networks/databases to even think about doing your job"

Access request procedures change very fast and are tedious to contribute updates to.

Videos have a high friction to update. Out of date docmentation is worse than no documentation at all.

Wikis have a low friction to update. Even the new hire can fix things as they execute the procedures.

I don't know why people would use videos, but then I also think that videos are terrible learning tools. But then, maybe it's just me, there are some strong visual learners out there.

about three weeks ago
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Users Report Warping of Apple's iPhone 6 Plus

Dr. Evil Re:Curved Phones (421 comments)

It's a contradiction I guess. A really good design looks obvious.

...and a company which purports to support creativity, and feels so strongly about rounded rectangles that they introduce them as a graphic primitive on early systems (per Isaacson?), sues another company for daring to use rounded rectangles.

I hope they get sued for infringing on Samsung's design. Samsung went out of their way to find a way to make something equally effective, distinct non-obvious but obvious looking. Now Apple seems to think their screen size and aspects of design are obvious.

about 1 month ago
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Hundreds of Thousands Turn Out For People's Climate March In New York City

Dr. Evil Re:irony (200 comments)

Yes, that's why they had local events in other cities.

But I think it's kind of dumb to think that in a city with tens or hundreds of thousands of cars idling daily in traffic for the past 70 years, that 500 busses making a single trip is going to have a more negative impact than if leaders don't hear some kind of voice for change.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Kickstarting a Free Textbook

Dr. Evil Dr. Evil writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Dr. Evil (3501) writes "Back in the day, I had a prof who wrote a text on Optics and sold photocopy editions for $5. We got cheap books and he got feedback to improve them. A friend of a friend is now doing the same for his philosophy students, except he's using Kickstarter to fund the book and offer digital editions free. Is this common? Are other professors doing this? He writes:

If you took a course in philosophy or critical thinking at college or university, you paid an average of $70 for your textbook. I think that's too much, especially for students who have to choose between food and the rent, two or three times a year, like a lot of my students. Yet the cost of these books never goes down, because students are a captive market.

So, I've been writing my own textbook, so that my students don't have to buy one. I'd like to expand and improve it and then make it available to the whole world, for free.

This Kickstarter campaign will allow me to bring in more contributors, get more research resources, and hire designers and artists and translators, so that we can put together a very high quality teaching tool, and make it available to every student in the world.

"

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