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Comments

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Comcast Customer Service Rep Just Won't Take No For an Answer

Entropius Re:ESPN (401 comments)

They also oversharpen the shit out of it.

The worst is grass, where the blades are close to the limiting resolution. The compression algorithm can't decide whether it's worth it or not to capture the detail in the grass blades, so you either get a smeary mess or holy shit oversharpened artifacts.

about two weeks ago
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Comcast Customer Service Rep Just Won't Take No For an Answer

Entropius Re:We're sorry he so faithfully followed instructi (401 comments)

Sure, but when I say that my reason for cancellation is I'M MOVING OUT, stop hounding me.

Also, when I call to inquire at my new residence, telling me that your downstream speed is 25 megabytes/sec is a good way to make me ask "Ma'am, do you mean megabytes, or megabits?"

An answer of "Oh, we mean megabytes! Our competition measures their speeds in megabits but we have megabytes, which are eight times as much!" won't inspire confidence.

about two weeks ago
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New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

Entropius Re:It's a No Brainer Win-Win at the End of the Day (204 comments)

I don't want them to "reinvent productivity" -- I want them to stop buying other people's things and making them suck (Skype) and stop working hard to make their own things suck (Windows 8).

about two weeks ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

Entropius Re:Actually makes good sense (702 comments)

I thought that's what those x-ray machines were for?

Besides, there is a lot of empty space inside some laptops. If they're worried about someone putting a bomb inside a laptop that won't boot then they should be equally worried about someone putting one inside a laptop that will.

about three weeks ago
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Privacy Oversight Board Gives NSA Surveillance a Pass

Entropius Not the only criterion... (170 comments)

Just because something's constitutional it's not necessarily a good idea, and in a government like ours the decision whether to do it or not ought to lie in the hands of the citizens.

about three weeks ago
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Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

Entropius Re:The Solution is In Plain Sight (579 comments)

Thank you -- finally a nation that treats everyone with respect, and figures that more information is better than less information since it lets people make more informed decisions.

about three weeks ago
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Norway Scraps Online Voting

Entropius Re:What logic! (139 comments)

How is doing electronic voting any more complex to maintain and develop than setting up polling places, screwing around with ballots, etc.?

about a month ago
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CDC: 1 In 10 Adult Deaths In US Caused By Excessive Drinking

Entropius Re:So....far more than guns (454 comments)

What fraction of that 50% were suicides, and what fraction of those suicides would have killed themselves by another method were a firearm not available?

In Washington DC, jumping in front of trains is the preferred method.

about a month ago
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NYC Loses Appeal To Ban Large Sugary Drinks

Entropius New Yorkers are weird... (532 comments)

I'm in NYC right now, visiting for a physics conference.

To an outsider, New Yorkers seem uniquely willing to deal with (and, when in charge, impose) authoritarian rules that people from elsewhere would chafe at. Don't do this; do this; everything in New York seems over-regulated. It's not just from the government; it's everywhere. I'm staying in a dormitory at Columbia University, and the rules on how guest passes work are quite asinine. The plenary talks at the conference have free bottled water and coffee provided (the conference organizers have paid Columbia's chosen caterer for this already), but bring in any of your own water bottles and it's a $1000 (!) fine. [This is different from the standard "no outside food" rule at restaurants, since they want you to buy their stuff; in this case the catering is all already paid for.]

I was also fortunate enough to get to perform in Carnegie Hall a few months ago with a choir I sing with. During our rehearsal, the conductor wanted her podium moved a few inches to get out of the way of a troupe of dancers sharing the stage. She wasn't allowed to move this simple block of wood three inches; someone had to go get a union stagehand, since it was made very clear to us: the union stagehands, by the terms of their contract, are the only ones allowed to touch anything, including things as mundane as music stands.

For whatever reason, New York is full of rules. Maybe some of them are necessary to keep eight million people crammed into this sardine can from hurting each other, but this has so conditioned the people here to obey unnecessary rules that people go along with it.

about a month ago
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San Francisco Bans Parking Spot Auctioning App

Entropius Re:Gotta agree with it being illegal (404 comments)

This contradiction demonstrates in a nutshell why price controls on limited resources are silly.

about a month ago
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San Francisco Bans Parking Spot Auctioning App

Entropius Re:Inevitable end (404 comments)

Croquet is that game where you hit stuff with hammers, right? That's about like most urban areas' approach to parking enforcement.

about a month ago
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EFF To Unveil Open Wireless Router For Open Wireless Movement

Entropius Re:Reckless (184 comments)

If someone wants to send a bomb threat using someone else's wifi there is a Starbucks or a McDonalds on every corner.

about a month ago
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EFF To Unveil Open Wireless Router For Open Wireless Movement

Entropius Re:Doesn't this violate TOS? (184 comments)

Frankly, if ISP's want to prevent overuse of their networks they should impose transfer caps. Within those caps it shouldn't matter whether I want to deliver my own bits or bits on behalf of someone else.

about a month ago
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Steve Wozniak Endorses Lessig's Mayday Super PAC

Entropius Re:Major source of corruption is Tax Code not PACs (209 comments)

So what you're saying is that it's unfair to accomplish what you consider to be proper policy objectives of taxation using a tax code with one free parameter.

Fine, then. Make it two free parameters: a common one is "your tax is X% of your income minus Y". The point is that every free parameter in the tax code is an opportunity for corruption, and currently we have about eleventy billion.

You write:

A true progressive tax, at realistic rates and without any built in "favors" is what is needed.

The problem is that so long as politicians are able to build in favors, they will. If you rely on the honor of politicians to prevent corruption you're doomed.

If you have the X%+Y tax system outlined above, there are no special favors; for a given revenue level there is in fact only one degree of freedom, and then it's just the standard rich-vs-poor fight, which is far less vulnerable to capture by special interests than our current behemoth.

about a month ago
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NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Entropius Re:Speculation... (455 comments)

Oh, I forgot one more thing:

One resonant mode of the engine vibrating in its brackets happens to have a frequency ... the same as the idle frequency of the engine. So, over time, the engine would shake itself loose and break the brackets.

It would get to a point where I'd have to rest my foot lightly on the pedal at stoplights to throw it out of resonance. Apparently it was a known problem with the things. When it got bad I'd take it in and get the mounts replaced, but it would come back after another few years.

about a month ago
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NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Entropius Re:Speculation... (455 comments)

I had one of the early ones, a '94 SL2. It was a great car and ran fine, although somewhere north of 115k miles when the odometer died the engine started randomly eating oil. I understand many of them from that era did the same.

Did I mention the odometer died? So did the gas gauge (intermittently). The water pump died when a thermostat malfunctioned and caused it to overheat. The AC died when a pressure sensor died and the compressor blew itself up.

Basically, it's a great car, except the engine's taste for oil and the random-ass failures of everything electronic in the whole damn car.

Oh, and you could unlock it with a screwdriver and start the engine with same. Mine disappeared and did a two-month stint bringing cocaine back from Mexico. (The police found it abandoned -- apparently the smugglers got fed up with driving stick, because they'd managed to break the mechanical linkage between the shifter and the transmission. Or maybe they wanted A/C in the desert -- amateurs. The cops told me to "go get it detailed and don't smell the white powder ground into the carpet.")

about a month ago
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NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Entropius Re:Speculation... (455 comments)

Many businesses have figured out a business model such that being nice to their customers aids in separating them from their money, because they tend to come back.

about a month ago
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Yahoo's Diversity Record Is Almost As Bad As Google's

Entropius Re:Most qualified and motivated candidates? (435 comments)

Men and women aren't *that* different. As a physics instructor, I can honestly say that my male and female students tend to be pretty much about the same. If you were to show me a solution to a problem, or code for a simulation, written by a student, I couldn't begin to guess whether the author was male or female.

Yes, there are some differences, but in most metrics those differences are very small compared to the variation within each group.

about a month ago

Submissions

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RawTherapee goes GPL, improves GUI

Entropius Entropius writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Entropius (188861) writes "RawTherapee, a flexible geek-friendly RAW converter for Linux and Windows, has just released its new version (with major UI improvements) under the GPL; it was previously proprietary but free. It uses selectable, unique demosaicing algorithms that are both resistant to Bayer artifacts and produce sharp, detailed results; see the comparison page. I've found it in the past to be the best Linux RAW converter available. The new UI improvements mean that its combination of usability, geek-friendliness, and sharp results is strong competition for ACR/Silkypix/whatever on Windows, and further improvements should no doubt follow now that the community can hack on it."
Link to Original Source

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