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Comments

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Red Hat Assistant General Counsel Analyses Supreme Court's Patent Ruling

Duggeek Who defines 'patentability' anyway? (43 comments)

So far, it's the patent owners and warchest protectors that seem to be driving the definition of what can and cannot be patented in the digital realm. This should be reversed; there should be an international (or universal) standard definition that a applicant must fulfill before it can even be considered for legal protection.

Just spit-balling here, but maybe it should be a rule of threes; a project must demonstrate it leverages the three parts of digital technology: the hardware, the software and the network. Among each of those, there must be three distinct techniques being used to separate it from common operations and, in each technique, three uncommon modules that can be considered proprietary in nature and therefore be protected as "trade secrets". So, in total, we have a basis for patentability that covers the basic facets of digital products, requires them to define how they set themselves apart and lastly requires that the applicant specify what makes their work unique at the code and/or API level; requiring nine points of uniqueness in each digital facet. No 'black box' definitions either; all patents must encompass and explain the concept that makes the patent... well, patentable.

This not only provides a structure for burden-of-proof arguments, (currently non-existent, apart from the ruling described in OP) but also creates the need for distinguishing one's work to set it apart from what platform developers and shared-library contributors can claim as prior art or common practice. More importantly, it eschews the petty bickering of single-factor patents; things like "swipe to unlock" or "presentation as a square tile with 10% rounded corners" or "putting a virtual button in the corner of the screen to select a program" sort of nonsense.

about 4 months ago
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Red Hat Assistant General Counsel Analyses Supreme Court's Patent Ruling

Duggeek Re:finally (43 comments)

If we're to fully plagarize Neil Armstrong, let's do it right.

That's one small click for man, one giant drag-and-drop for mankind.

I don't know if that's how we're going to celebrate the first crack in the shell of software patents, but yes, it is a step in the right direction.

about 4 months ago
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Comcast Converting 50,000 Houston Home Routers Into Public WiFi Hotspots

Duggeek Re:Liability (474 comments)

Indeed. The Xfinity Wifi service is not like a public hotspot, it's app-enabled and otherwise walled off.

The app asks you to log-in with Xfinity HSI credentials, connects to a geographic database and shows 'coverage' on a small map. When you want to connect to a hotspot, the app coordinates the security automatically, kinda like a pushbutton feature on a router.

If you don't have the app, these hotspots look like any other secured private WAPs.

Despite all that, it's an arrogant and draconian move to just switch-on customer equipment to provide a service. I believe Zordak made the point that the gateway/router devices are leased to customers, but essentially Comcast property. To me, that means they can take control to provide enhanced services, like advance port forwarding, traffic balancing and delivering QoS metrics back to their root network. All that makes sense, right?

What doesn't make sense is basically hijacking the device to provide a subscription-based service for other customers. If I have one of these routers, then I expect it to serve the purpose of fulfilling my service subscription, not someone else's. Providing such a service should be at the option of the subscriber, not the default stance with an opt-out procedure. Organizing the majority of subscribers to opt-out of this service clause will surely pressure Xfinity to re-think their strategy, but good luck getting the attention of all 50,000 households. (or even half of them)

A responsible, progressive and fair-minded company would provide incentives for becoming part of their service infrastructure. Monthly service discounts would be a good start, and might even improve Xfinity's reputation in the process. Let's say, the more isolated your WAP is on the Xfinity map (thereby filling in a wide gap in coverage) the more of a discount the homeowner gets.

In this day and age, it takes a level competitor to enact change in the marketplace; so we're looking at you FIOS, DSL and Google Fiber. Do it better!

about 4 months ago
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Apple Says Many Users 'Bought an Android Phone By Mistake'

Duggeek The rest of the story (711 comments)

Anyone think of the percentage of iPhone adopters that switch to Android? Those numbers are conspicuously absent. I doubt they did any follow-up for iPhone "consumer corrections" to see how many later dropped iPhone and went back.

And they say Microsoft "drinks the kool-ade" on their own products. Seems like both camps have a strange brew now. However in this respect, Apple has some serious catching up to do.

If the rumors are true, then we'll get to see who can make the better "geez I feel like I'm going to break this thing it's so thin" device for 2015.

Still waiting for the bluetooth, bio-powered, wetware interface cartilage implant accessory. (stereo, please)

about 4 months ago
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Comcast CEO Brian Roberts Opens Mouth, Inserts Foot

Duggeek Re:SIMPLE SOLUTION (343 comments)

Buy Comcast stock. Get 51% in customer hands and vote in a NEW fucking board of directors. Capitalism, free market, and democracy.

Well... 2 outta 3 ain't bad.

about 5 months ago
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Comcast CEO Brian Roberts Opens Mouth, Inserts Foot

Duggeek Re:who will invest? (343 comments)

Well Comcast is raking in billions, so why cant they?

I think that's the point.

They can, but they don't. They'd rather pay higher dividends and pocket more profits than install meaningful upgrades to 30-year-old infrastructure.

about 5 months ago
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Comcast CEO Brian Roberts Opens Mouth, Inserts Foot

Duggeek Re:Who owns the pipes? (343 comments)

[...] (1) regulation, (2) competition, and (3) public ownership of pipes [...]

  • (1) What regulation? Lobbyists control legislators, and lobbyists are powered by corporations. Along with the recent chairman appointment, (y'know... a former lobbyist) the FCC is as good as sold.
  • (2) What competition? The feeding frenzy of cable infrastructure -- 80's and 90's -- has already been divvied up. The alpha predators are just bloated giants and looking to mate with– or destroy the rest.
  • (3) See #1... or do you really think there's a budget, or even a motion, for that purchase? It would be political suicide, because it would be interpreted as "big government getting bigger." You'd have better luck going parcel-by-parcel with Kickstarter or Indiegogo, but then the big boys would just play the same game they did with smaller competitors; milking you dry until you end up selling it back. (and at a discount) It has to be all or nothing, and the sticker-shock on that could just about kill you.

This isn't a simple game, if it's a game at all. In fact, it's more like a quail hunt, where the hunters are doing so well that they're getting bored and shooting their friends in the face. (see what I did there)

about 5 months ago
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Terran Computational Calendar Introduces Minimonths, Year Bases, and Datemods

Duggeek How a programmer views time (209 comments)

That's what this 'calendar' essentially says. Let's just call it what it is, a simple algorithm for a few celestial body movements. It's rail-minded development applied to the solar system, with only a nod to the Gregorian lunar-based system. (28-day months, or approximately one lunar rotation) Also, and let's be honest here, the whole "timemods" idea is just a gadget. It's not practical outside of the inner-workings model. I mean c'mon... calendars are supposed to work for everyone.

All that doesn't mean it's a bad idea.

On the contrary, it's a great start. But if it's to become a great system, worthy of usurping the Gregorian calendar, then it has to embrace the natural marks of celestial time frames... not just one solstice per year.

  • First improvement would be to include both solstices in measurements. This already doubles the accuracy of the system.
  • Take it one step further and include both equinoxes for additional reliability.
  • The previous two suggestions annihilate the 13th "mini month" idea, (which BTW is horrible) so tack those on to the quarterly ends as 'meta months'. See? Quarters are now built-in!
  • The whole point of a standard calendar is to be predictable, so making corrections four times every year means the next cycle is always more reliable than the last. (though it will never be perfect, because entropy)
  • We also open up the possibility that sub-diurnal adjustments can now be quarterly, semi-annual or annual. Another leap-second in June, why not?

This system then retains the single greatest advantage of the Gregorian calendar; division by the most factorials. (!12=1,2,3,4,6,12 -vs- !13=1,13) And now it has more frequent course corrections. Consider this programmatically with the above suggestions, and the system is still computationally simpler than our legacy Gregorian system. So there it is, an accessible system that everyone can use.

about 5 months ago
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Major ISPs Threaten To Throttle Innovation and Slow Network Upgrades

Duggeek Re:If you regulate properly, we'll stop our busine (286 comments)

Seems to me like there must be something to it. If the ISP's are threatening to sit on their asses (believe me, they'll do it, those crazy bastards) then there's got to be something proper and fair about that bill.

The ensuing pity party will undoubtedly be called the thumb-up-the-ass-mageddon.

Either that, or face the rise of a Chart-warner-cox-cast abomination, sure to be renamed the Cable Operators Commision Kabal. The acronym should make it obvious.

about 5 months ago
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Why Disney Can't Give Us High-Def Star Wars Where Han Shoots First

Duggeek Re:At least there's hope . . . (210 comments)

It didn't start that way. In fact, there's a distinct correlation to the increasing age of George Lucas and the increasing "hijinks" of his characters and/or the ephemeral nature of the characters he introduces. JarJar is just the cataclysmic conclusion of a string of bad decisions that had a truly promising start.

In order, ep. 4 has witty repartee between Threepio and Artoo, somewhat diluted by SE retcons. This is the par excellence of their performances. You'll see that ep. 5 is where Threepio starts "hamming it up", but in a self-aware manner. A caricature of uptight British absurdism that doesn't take itself too seriously, played well as the "straight man" opposite of Artoo's escapades. Then in ep. 6, we get a par performance from Threepio with somewhat more heroic notions from Artoo. In a way, the Ewoks took the burden from the droid duo for providing the comedy/tragedy aspects of the third film. For the droids, those performances worked well enough and didn't take away from the story.

It all goes to shit with the prequels. Artoo is immediately framed as a "tragic hero" in ep. 1 because of the apparent slavery/fodder undertones of Astromech Droids overall. Thereby delivering a heavy-handed message of oppression and strife, "humanizing" this artificial-life character. Threepio, as the invention of young Anakin, is supposedly imbued with the values and morals of young Anakin, but doesn't explain how Threepio is unique from the protocol droids have been mass-produced for millennia. It's like building a toaster out of Erector/Technix parts... what was the point, exactly? Oh, right... it's a conveniently close-knit origin story that way. This film does little more than get principal franchise characters (Anakin, Obi Wan, Artoo, Threepio and Yoda) together by the end of the story. JarJar is introduced. He's inserted into the story as both a "CGI triumph" and as the sad clown. (I. Hate. Clowns.) In a way, it was JarJar that pushed Threepio into the "uptight ninny" niche that ultimately doomed him as a character and prevented any kind of humorous moments from Artoo throughout the prequel films. JarJar took over that job... kind of appropriate, considering the outsourcing epidemic that was happening at the time.

Then we get to the travesty of ep. 2; the Republic Army of Clones. (they didn't "attack" anyone, really... and it's a clear evasion of the obvious "Clone Wars" title, which would have made tons of sense based on canon, but was "strategically reserved" for a later animated television series.) If you can somehow manage to keep your last meal down and endure the frigid romance of Padme and Anakin for at least an hour, you'll see that the relatively minimal screen-time with the droids has been "lubed up" with predictable, over-the-top and depressingly corny gags. These two characters are ruined for being made into even shallower caricatures of themselves. There are zero moments with Artoo and Threepio that had to be written that way for the sake of storyline. Zero. Their abominable performances in this film were entirely by choice, and it was a very, very poor choice indeed. JarJar didn't even make up for it, he's now just a piece of the background. There's nothing less satisfying than to see a pathetic comedy-relief character turn into bland scenery. There's no real dichotomy here; JarJar doesn't offset Threepio in any way. And at this point, neither does Artoo. It's all ruined.

Now there's that lingering aftertaste; ep. 3. It's almost embarrassing to think of it, but it's the latest SW franchise feature-length motion picture to date. (*shudder*) While it has a most heroic opening, (Artoo... yes, again) this story later unfolds with almost no droids at all, and doesn't even really leverage them for comic relief. This was like putting ep. 5 after ep. 6 -- giving us a dark finish to a hopeful segway. The visual-gag moments we're given with Artoo and Threepio only reinforce the two-dimensional cutouts we laboriously endured in ep. 2. Nothing new to see here. JarJar is all but missing... but unfortunately, we see that he's still alive and doing rather well for himself; again, thoroughly unsatisfying.

If I were to visualize this progression, it would follow the chronological timeline of motion picture releases. (4 > 5 > 6, then 1 > 2 > 3) Under ep. 4, you would see the iconic image of Artoo and Threepio from the final "commencement" ceremony of ANH. (shiny and presentable) As you move to the end of the first trilogy, you would see them become more like drawn caricatures (anyone remember that animated "Droids" that assaulted us for a few Saturdays back in the '80s? Yeah, a bit like that) As we move into the prequel trilogy, we would see the stripped-down "naked" Threepio alongside a burnt-out Artoo, and as if Anakin himself had drawn it. In the second film, we see Threepio with plating (finally) but also amateurly hand-drawn... perhaps JarJar is trying his hand at it? (kinda like how Dub-yah tries his hand at painting) By the sixth film, the images of Threepio, Artoo and JarJar are just hand-drawn by a toddler, who is the only member of the audience impressed by their performances.

Thanks for the legacy, Mr. Lucas. May we please do it the right way now?

about 5 months ago
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Applying Pavlovian Psychology to Password Management

Duggeek That's the same as my luggage! (288 comments)

It's nice to see that some things never change.

Introduce a profound article on /. and the community... bickers about something completely different.

I, for one, applaud the policy described in TFA. Calculating the median time to crack weak passwords, then requiring the password to be replaced within that time frame, is nothing short of brilliant. It's a practical approach to security; something they should have been doing all along. Can't wait until this elevates to law-of-the-land status.

Until then, please, keep discussing whatever it was you felt was so important.

about 5 months ago
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Intentional Backdoor In Consumer Routers Found

Duggeek Re:Your first action after purchasing a router (236 comments)

This is exactly why shopping for a router isn't as simple as finding the best bang/buck. It's a concerted effort of finding good deals (generally refurb/overstock, avoiding rebates) along with verifying open firmware support. Finding that HW version can be tricky. Just apply Occam's razor to it; there's probably a good reason that gigabit N-600 dual-band router only costs thirty bucks.

My house runs on DD-WRT (one main router, one dedicated for WiFi, both D-Link) and I've never looked back. I'm on DD-WRT forums at least quarterly to check for important updates, and it just keeps getting better. The conversations may be less-than-friendly, but they do make solid firmware.

about 6 months ago
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US Secretary of State Calls Climate Change 'Weapon of Mass Destruction'

Duggeek We must be winning? (401 comments)

If climate change is WMD, it must be wielded by a certain faction

The most potent element in climate change is methane gas.

The greatest living producers of methane gas are bovines, (cattle) on its own, contributing up to 30% of world greenhouse gas emissions [EPA report

The number of bovines in captivity (in US, Europe and Asia, excluding India) tend to outnumber those in the wild

For the captive cattle population in the US, roughly 1/3 are converted to foodstuffs each year [source: "download fact sheet"]

We've got them right where we want them, but somehow they still manage to execute their global-climate attacks. Time for a diplomatic solution?

(j/k ... this is 'Murica, we don't do diplomatic solutions.)

about 8 months ago
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Laser Headlights Promise More Intense, Controllable Beams

Duggeek Re:..you'll be able to scream, 'fire the lasers!'" (376 comments)

Car powers lasers. Lasers shine on phosphors. Phosphors emit wide-spectrum normal light at high efficiency.

Quite true! The current convention of excited-gas luminescence (High Intensity Discharge, or HID) is very bright indeed. Sports venues are looking into feasibility of replacing stadium and indoor-arena lighting with HID or something similar for the sheer savings in energy consumption.

Headlight glare from HID is only dulled for oncoming traffic by shaping the beam. The technology for laser-bombarded phosphors will probably have the same optical harnessing as HID. (most likely due to cost-efficiency by automakers so they don't have to fully replace their precision manufacturing) As for the 'annoyance' factor, there will continue to be hill-crest and sharp-rise blindness from oncoming traffic until such a time as when all cars are equipped with a solenoid-controlled lens assembly tied to a comprehensive pitch-sensing array. It's also clear that, unlike LED light sources where luminescence is hard-wired in the manufacturing, laser-excited phosphors can be precisely controlled through the phosphor material and packaged optics. As this report shows, the exact nature of the phosphor-impregnated material affects the color and amplitude of the light emitted.

Are they potentially brighter? Quite possibly. Would manufacturers be able to easily mitigate that effect as they roll-out production? Absolutely.

In the meantime, I doubt I am the only one that's concerned with the term, "laser headlights". The emitted light is not actually laser light, it's the broad-spectrum light (as correctly stated by PP) emitted by energized phosphors. The laser only energizes luminescence, the phosphor is what actually emits the light. But it's the "laser headlights" term that implies that the beams are made-up of laser light. Sure, it's a finer point, but I think it stands for comprehensive accuracy. This tech should be known as "laser-powered headlights" or even "Laser Energized Phosphor Emission | LEPE headlights".In fact, I sense a good marketing angle in the latter, at the very least for laser-energized-phosphor emission manufacturers.

The way it's written in those articles is, plainly put, misleading to just about everyone on that point.

about 8 months ago
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Say What? Wading Through the Nonsense In Microsoft's Re-Org Memo

Duggeek Re:Ever wonder? (165 comments)

Have you ever watched an interview with Ballmer and after thought to yourself "Did he actually answer any questions?"

Where is the actual story?

Indeed! Executives are just politicians without the need for public vetting; their job is essentially to look smarter than they really are, because they make the decisions behind millions, if not billions, of shareholder dollars.

If that analogy applies to Ballmer, then heaven help us. He's been outed time and time again as one of the most monkey-brained, bull-headed and chair-throwingest XOs of all time.

I often mirror exec-u-speak to the challenge of a/v content of the early Internet era. Those tiny, blocky, postage-stamp videos of the 90's and early millennium. In the sub-48kbps MP3 era, the sounds and music bits were just crap; a tinny, hissing cacophony of some approximation of the original piece. This blew the comprehension of many podcasts, back when they were just starting out.

So, we all remember those experiences. Now, consider that the executive "dialect" is much like that over-compressed media. The XO types just believe that the words they pick are somehow so concentrated and potent that they simply must represent the exact ideas they have. The reality is the sheer ambiguity of the semantics is a minefield of confusion, miscomprehended statements and basically invites rampant guesswork to their entire organization.

Then again, maybe there's an art to it? Consider for a moment that the ambiguity, obscurity and guesswork has been infused into these speeches by design. What we view as incompetence is instead a patchwork of intentional obfuscation, the clear and present question-mark of words that could mean something, or nothing at all. In the end, is it really about communication, or a thinly disguised non-committal of accountability? You decide.

about a year ago
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Say What? Wading Through the Nonsense In Microsoft's Re-Org Memo

Duggeek Re:I've seen similar slogans before ... (165 comments)

Check out the bit under How We Work: (from the memo)

Each major initiative will have a champion who will be a direct report to me or one of my direct reports. The champion will organize to drive a cross-company team for success, but my whole staff will have commitment to the initiative’s success.

Bringing the word champion to the table seems like a noble and heroic undertaking, but listen to the undercurrent. It says each champion will be "a direct report to [Ballmer] or one of [his] direct reports." Hrm... is there an historical precedent for such a caste? I think so, and their uniforms had pairs of matching letters; I believe it's the letter just after "R" and just before "T". (and depicted in the 1970's Detroit Arena Costumed Rock Band fashion)

Now note the second statement, how these champions will "organize to drive a cross-company team for success," but he also makes a point of informing how "[Ballmer's] whole staff will have commitment to the initiative's success." Is the parallel getting through yet? This is moving from an inefficient dog-eat-dog tribal model--as Ballmer previously molded MSFT in the early millenium--into a clear model of Gestapo fascism. It's lovely how this "initiative" is not named at all; might it be called "The Final Solution" at some point? (If you haven't grasped the insinuation by now, then I can't help you any further without degrading this into a trite labeling of a particular historical world figure that has vilified so many in the past decade.)

And before anyone pulls out the "welcome to corporate culture" card, just be clear that this is MSFT, or an equivalent to the population of a small first-world nation we're talking about here. The gravitas is a bit greater than some tri-state, regional or even continental US conglomerate. The scope of this one corporation is like a moderate-sized government with world-wide reach, and one which reasonably and in all practical sense can (and does) have a major influence on world affairs. This isn't just name-calling here.

Later in that paragraph:

Our focus on high-value activities — serious fun, meetings, tasks, research, information assurance and IT/Dev workloads — also will get top-level championship.

If you get the implications of the former passage, then this one should chill you to the bone. Great, just what we need... a 'champion' for "serious fun" and "information assurance."

about a year ago
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How Do You Get Better Bug Reports From Users?

Duggeek Re:oops (FTFY) (205 comments)

That's not how you submit a bug for the /. mod system!

(There, now you're back on-topic.)

about a year ago
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How Do You Get Better Bug Reports From Users?

Duggeek Re:Have tried everything (205 comments)

I have tried a bunch of ways. Trained the 'expert' users in the area on how to put in a better ticket.

The fact that you need 'expert' users to effectively utilize the bug system says less about your users and more about your system.

[...] users will use what method is easiest to them

Indubitably, so why aren't your methods getting any easier? Ah! Maybe you haven't tried everything after all!

  • If they're calling someone they know, then why else do they have that number? (same goes for direct email)
  • Why is that capture address visible at all?
  • Uncivil behavior between employees is a matter for HR, don'cha think?
  • Email chains, tickets, log files... you're gonna have to sift through some crap at some point, right?
  • Who doesn't complain to coworkers?
  • Now, doing nothing is the worst offense, but only because the user feels like she has no viable options.
  • What sort of ticketing system allows "call me" as a sufficient description? If anything, that's a clear "cry for help" about your ticketing system.

So, what you're saying is that the users don't make your job any easier, and in return, you're going to make your workflow less accessible and make their job even harder? I'm feeling sorry for someone in this story, and it isn't you.

about a year ago
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How Do You Get Better Bug Reports From Users?

Duggeek Re:Use the software yourself (205 comments)

I think what you're trying to say is:

Make something "idiot-proof" and the universe is certain to send along a better idiot. --Rich Cook (paraphrased)

about a year ago

Submissions

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Geeks.com Online Shop Has Closed

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  about a year ago

Duggeek (1015705) writes "After 17 years, one of the best kept secrets in shopping, Geeks.com have shuttered their online doors. Myself, I have a small book of sales orders from years past. According to the latest announcement, that stack will not be growing any larger.

From the announcement:

Our vision has always been to provide the geeky tech consumer an alternative avenue to purchase quality refurbished and new techy products and gadgets. That vision was the cornerstone of our slogan “Best Deals Every Nanosecond”. Unfortunately after a lot of difficult consideration the owners of Geeks.com feel we are unable to come through on this vision any longer.

There are many why's... The e-commerce landscape, as well as the consumer electronics market, has changed dramatically with intense competition and a 1000lb gorilla (do we really need to say who) competitor that can lose millions of dollars to buy customers and suck up inventory. They can lose money with impunity, supported by the stock market. We cannot.

The landing page of their website now goes directly to this announcement; the storefront is switched off.

They maintain a Facebook page where a combination of remorse and surprise is rapidly growing. The letter also asserts that they will fulfill all business obligations to online customers during their transition to both a solitary, brick-and-mortar presence in California and a wholesale division, Evertek.

Personally, just about every keyboard in my closet was purchased from them, and another box full of USB devices as well. Five of my PC builds exist because of their competitive pricing and reasonable service. Feel free to share your own memories of the former Computer Geeks Discount Outlet."

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Ask Slashdot: Should Valve Start Their Own Steam Distro?

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Duggeek (1015705) writes "There's been a lot of discussion lately about Valve, Steam and the uncertain future of the Windows platform.

While the effect is unmistakably gigundus, it begs a specific question. Would Valve consider putting out its own Linux distro? One advantage of such a thing would be tighter control over kernel drivers, storage, init processes and managing display(s), but would it be worth all the upstream bickering? Would it be better to start anew, or ride on a mature foundation like Fedora or Debian? Might that be a better option than addressing the myriad differences of today's increasingly fracturing distro-scape? Discuss."
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McDonald's Tweets Only to Find They Are Twits

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Duggeek (1015705) writes "We all know McDonald's as a happy-time brand; putting forth happy people doing happy things. We also know that their portrayal is an illusion, and the more cynical among us could rant about animal cruelty and disease control issues aimed at this iconic brand. A marketing exec apparently had their mc-rose-colored-glasses on last week, as an ill-conceived Twitter hash-tag turned and bit the hand that paid for it.

From the article: Jumping on the social media bandwagon, McDonald's last week launched a campaign featuring paid-for tweets, which would appear at the top of search results. All was humdrum until 2pm last Wednesday when the global chain sent out two tweets with the more general hash-tag #McDStories."

Link to Original Source
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Facebook introduces "usernames"

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Duggeek writes "Tuesday afternoon, I logged myself on Facebook and this appeared at the top of the page:

Starting on Friday, June 12th, at 10:01pm, you'll be able to choose a username for your Facebook account to easily direct friends, family, and coworkers to your profile.
Check out the Facebook Blog for more information or send yourself an email with the details.

Helpful links include a countdown timer for the event, an FAQ and a link to the corresponding Facebook Blog entry. No need to rush, though. A cutoff date was already in effect on May 31st, FB accounts created after that date will be waiting longer for approval.

The blog explains how (oddly enough) a ‘username’ acts as a URL keyword; taking visitors directly to your personal profile. Those on FB that double as “Page Administrators” may give pages unique ‘usernames’ as well for the benefit of outside visitors; the real beneficiaries of this new feature.

After searching their FAQ, it appears there is no information on whether the log-in process will change at all. Currently, it requires a registered e-mail address and password. Can it really be a ‘username’ if it has nothing to do with online credentials? Does “username” mean the same thing anymore? The blog post caught fire, snagging more than 25,000 comments from the Facebook community as of 1:31am EDT, or about ten hours after posting."

Link to Original Source

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Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Duggeek (1015705) writes "This story from Businessweek shows that "protection" is a subjective term:

When Brad Kehn received his first credit card from Capital One Financial in 2004, it took him only three months to exceed its $300 credit limit and get socked with a $35 over-limit fee. But what surprised the Plankinton, S.D., resident more was that Cap One then offered him another card, even though he was over the limit -- and then another and another.
According to a Cap One spokesperson, it's rare, but it happens:

In a written response to questions, Cap One acknowledges that it offers multiple cards. "Our goal is to offer products that meet our customers' needs and appropriately reflect their ability to pay," it says. The company also stated: "Within our current U.S. portfolio, the vast majority of Capital One customers have only one Capital One credit card with a very small percentage choosing to have three or more cards."

The article goes on to reveal that, along with offering multiple cards, Cap One allows customers to "rob Peter to pay Paul," or use one card to pay another at the inflated cash-advance rate, driving up their debt even more.

"

Journals

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Q: Is Palin ready to be veep?

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  about 6 years ago It's a simple question: Do you think Sarah Palin is ready to be the next Vice President of the United States of America? For the sake of neutrality, the question will stand unanswered for my own part. While you're at it, PBS.org is running a poll of that very question. The results have been causing tremors across Facebook and other social networks. So, if you have a few seconds to spare, why not stop by and make your opinion count?

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No. It's not a broken muffler

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Just today, I found one of those headlines that I was just curious about. It's a bit more than curiosity that fuels my interest now. An earlier story broke on NewsNetFive.com back in December. Other reports have come from irregular times during the past year, but now it's an alarming increase.

Tuesday, MSNBC published a consumer-interest article about a new trend in car theft/vandalism.
Why take the whole car when the catalytic converter alone is worth a mint?

From the MSNBC article:

Catalytic converters have only small traces of the metals -- platinum, palladium and rhodium -- but there's enough in them for a thief to resell stolen units for up to $200 apiece. Rhodium is among the most expensive metals on Earth, commanding as much as $6,000 an ounce on the open market.

I did my own checking on the going rate of rhodium, it's now over $8,000 USD per troy ounce!

The soaring price for precious metals is the clear motivator for this phenomenon, and gives whole new meaning to “cut and run”.

What else do we own that we should be protecting? (or- well... selling for scrap?) For that matter, what's the reason behind the skyrocketing price? Does the mining slowdown in South Africa explain this, or could it also be something else?

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What's (not) in your wallet?

Duggeek Duggeek writes  |  more than 7 years ago This story from Businessweek shows that "protection" is a subjective term:

When Brad Kehn received his first credit card from Capital One Financial in 2004, it took him only three months to exceed its $300 credit limit and get socked with a $35 over-limit fee. But what surprised the Plankinton, S.D., resident more was that Cap One then offered him another card, even though he was over the limit -- and then another and another.

According to a Cap One spokesperson, it's rare, but it happens:

In a written response to questions, Cap One acknowledges that it offers multiple cards. "Our goal is to offer products that meet our customers' needs and appropriately reflect their ability to pay," it says. The company also stated: "Within our current U.S. portfolio, the vast majority of Capital One customers have only one Capital One credit card with a very small percentage choosing to have three or more cards."

The article goes on to reveal that, along with offering multiple cards, Cap One allows customers to "rob Peter to pay Paul," or use one card to pay another at the inflated cash-advance rate, driving up their debt even more.

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