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Ballmer Leaves Microsoft Board

Dragonshed Insufficient (142 comments)

Sorry Balmer, that still isn't far enough.

Nuke him from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

about 2 months ago
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Windows 9 To Win Over Windows 7 Users, Disables Start Screen For Desktop

Dragonshed Win 8.1 Start Screen is fine (681 comments)

I know it might sound weird, but I like where things are at in Windows 8.1. Boots into desktop after login, transition to start screen is much less jaring when using the same background, configure the immediate left of the start screen with all your most used apps. It's very similar to the osx launchpad.

If they remove it in win9, I may just configure it back the way it was in 8.1.

about 4 months ago
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A New Robo-Soldier Will Test Chemical Warfare Suits

Dragonshed Robots, Chemical Warfare... (29 comments)

This summary reads like a Fringe episode synopsis. Are there any former Boston Dynamics co-founders currently in a mental institution, claiming they crossed universes after ingesting some homemade lsd?

about 6 months ago
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Fukushima Nuclear Plant Cleanup May Take More Than 40 Years

Dragonshed Newer tech yes, Smaller reactors no (218 comments)

Moving away from the first & second generation light water reactor designs is definitely something we should be doing, but simply going to smaller plants is a dubious plan.

From TFA:

> Dr. Jaczko cited a well-known characteristic of nuclear reactor fuel to continue to generate copious amounts of heat after a chain reaction is shut down. That “decay heat” is what led to the Fukushima meltdowns. The solution, he said, was probably smaller reactors in which the heat could not push the temperature to the fuel’s melting point.

Actually innovating, bringing something like the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor to reality, is more along the lines of what we should be doing.

Also, it was the tsunami that actually caused the meltdowns. Fukushima had appropriate backups for cooling the reactor, and were well under way when the reactors were shut down after the quake, they just didn't design for the eventually of a tsunami to come and categorically knock them all out.

$0.02

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Planks Would You Want In a Platform of a Political Party?

Dragonshed Re:thinking longer term... (694 comments)

Mod this up, please. There are an endless supply of examples where short-term perspectives & thinking have polluted American Life.

about a year and a half ago
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School Shooting Prompts Legislation To Study Violent Video Games

Dragonshed Return of the Red Herring (1168 comments)

The idea that our society is incapable of handling violent videogames or media, but infallible with regard to possessing and handling professional military weapons is beyond absurd.

about 2 years ago
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Windows 8 To Reduce Memory Footprint

Dragonshed Re:And this matters? (306 comments)

It matters because Windows 8 is intended to target low end ARM hardware as well as high end Intel/AMD. At //build/ Microsoft kindof made a big deal about the wide range of hardware they want to run on, and when someone buys a low end slate for $300 instead of getting an ipad, Microsoft wants that experience to be as good as it can be.

Totally agree with the file system gripes, though.

about 3 years ago
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Xamarin's First Mono Release - Proof of Life!

Dragonshed Just so you know. (95 comments)

Yes, someone cares.

Other useful answers include:
Yes, someone still builds (good) products in C#.
Yes, .net on mobile is actually useful.
Yes, this thing has legs.

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Data-Only Phone, Voice Over WiFi?

Dragonshed Re:Skype on iPod 4. (208 comments)

He wants normal people with normal phones to be able to call a normal phone number... and have it go to his phone, which has no service plan, but has data connectivity through wifi in his house.

Which you can do with Skype. A subscription offers you very reasonable rates for making call and an online number (which he mentions) where normal people can call you and if you're offline either get voicemail or forwarded to another normal number.

There are still quality concerns, as I mention here: http://ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2031828&cid=35448288

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Data-Only Phone, Voice Over WiFi?

Dragonshed Re:Skype on iPod 4. (208 comments)

I've had some success doing the same. The iPod touch 4 is a good device, but the service of Skype over wifi for making and receiving calls isn't as good as plain old cellular voice. When it's good, it's better than celluar, when it's bad, it introduces jarring audio artifacts or plain drops calls (really bad).

more than 3 years ago
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WoW On an iPad Via Gaikai

Dragonshed Re:Input (121 comments)

I totally agree.

The ipad puts alot of design constraints on apps. Most games turn part of the touch screen into a controller input that plays similar to a portable console (think gameboy). Doesn't work for a game like WoW, or Blizzard would've ported it to consoles long ago.

-ds

more than 4 years ago
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New Microsoft Silverlight Features Have Windows Bias

Dragonshed Re:Microsoft pollution at its best (251 comments)

Perhaps you should click on the "Learn what these numbers mean" link. Here, I'll do it for you:

The numbers on the graph reflect how many searches have been done for a particular term, relative to the total number of searches done on Google over time. They don't represent absolute search volume numbers, because the data is normalized and presented on a scale from 0-100. Each point on the graph is divided by the highest point, or 100. When we don't have enough data, 0 is shown. The numbers next to the search terms above the graph are summaries, or totals.

The number of searches in google has no objective relation to the number of deployments, for either flash or silverlight.

Farnsworth: "Bunk! Bunk, I say! Bring me a bag of Bigfoot's droppings, or shut up!"

more than 4 years ago
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New Microsoft Silverlight Features Have Windows Bias

Dragonshed Speaking of Bias.. (251 comments)

From TFA:

Unfortunately, some of these features are not what they first appear. The HTML control in Silverlight 4 is not a new embedded browser from Microsoft, but uses components from Internet Explorer on Windows, or Safari on the Mac, which means that the same content might render differently. The HTML control only works out-of-browser, and simply displays a blank space if browser-hosted.

The difference in rendering between IE on Windows and Safari on Macosx is a reality, whether silverlight is involved or not. The purpose of the HTML Control is to allow scenarios dependent on the HTML Bridge, the part of silverlight that blurs the lines and allows communication between the html dom + javascript and C# code, to run correctly when the app is hosted out of the browser. It's essentially a crutch to allow developers that want to use siverlight a way to leverage existing investments in web application development.

More seriously, COM automation is a Windows-only feature, introducing differentiation between the Mac and Windows implementations. Since cross-platform Mac and Windows is a key Silverlight feature, it is curious that Microsoft has now decided to make it platform-specific in such an important respect. Microsoft Office and parts of the Windows API have a COM interface, so access to COM makes Silverlight a much more capable client.

This is a fairly obscure feature, and I'm fairly surprised that it was included at all, but doubt it'll be of use to the vast majority of current and future silverlight developers out there. Like the html control, it's a crutch, to allow developers that want to use silverlight a way to leverage existing investments. The mantra I've heard out of the silverlight team is to focus on unblocking customer scenarios (scenarios they cannot unblock themselves) without compromising the overall feature goals (like keeping the runtime download small).

Nevertheless, Silverlight has crossed a threshold. It is now a runtime that has extended functionality only on Windows. That will not help Microsoft win developers from Adobe AIR, which has the same features on both Mac and Windows.

I don't think it'll matter. Any developer that is seriously considering using silverlight over Adobe AIR, but is then persuaded not to because Silverlight's Trusted Out-Of-Browser scenario has COM support on Windows and not on Mac is "Doing It Wrong". It's an edge case feature that doesn't affect Silverlight's over all "Cross-Platforminess".

Flame On.

more than 4 years ago
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GMail Experiences Serious Outage

Dragonshed Gmail's back (408 comments)

Not to belittle the editorial staff, but gmail was back up and running before the story was posted publically

more than 5 years ago
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Silverlight 3.0 Released, Allows Apps Outside the Browser

Dragonshed Re:Silverlight's video capabilities have always... (335 comments)

Major League Baseball Advanced Media totally botched the transition not once, but twice. When switching from Flash to Silverlight last year their new Silverlight-based streaming player didn't work, leaving paying customers without service for days. This year they decided to switched back to a Flash-based player ON OPENING DAY. Unfortunately, the new player doesn't work either, and in many ways was worse than the silverlight player, requiring additional installation plugins for HD capabilities, and left these same paying customers without the opening day experience they're paying for two years in a row.

Also I'm sure politics played a role too.

MLB 2008
http://www.pcworld.com/article/144035/mlbs_web_video_strikes_out_on_opening_day.html

MLB 2009
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-j-elisberg/major-league-baseball-str_b_185158.html

more than 5 years ago
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Researchers Enable Mice To Exhale Fat

Dragonshed Is Carbon Sequestration.. (328 comments)

.. the next logical step? Can't wait to see the day where global warming is not only caused by cars but by exhaling our fat asses.

more than 5 years ago

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