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Oregon Sues Oracle For "Abysmal" Healthcare Website

Futurepower(R) Good answer! Fraud is their main source of profit? (52 comments)

Good answer: "... the Oregon attorney general doesn't have the technical ability to prove the fraud and lies. The state has already proven they don't understand what they're doing."

Also, Oracle has been through this perhaps thousands of times. Apparently the major profit center for companies like Oracle is being late and more expensive than predicted. For example, see this quote from the book, Heuristics and Biases: The Psychology of Intuitive Judgment:

"... a recent General Accounting Office report on U.S. military equipment procurement concluded that only 1% of major military purchases involving high technology were delivered on time and on budget."

That book says the problem is due to a sociological mistake. My understanding is that it is entirely intended, a way of making money from the largely hidden military purchases of the U.S. government. For the U.S. government, killing people is an enormous, extremely profitable business.

1 hour ago
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Ask Slashdot: Where Can I Find Good Replacement Batteries?

Futurepower(R) Cell phones with non-replaceable batteries? (120 comments)

An even bigger issue than buying replacement batteries is replacing batteries in cell phones that are said to have batteries that aren't replaceable.

It shocks me that companies can be so hostile to their customers as to force them to buy new cell phones after the inevitable degradation of the batteries.

yesterday
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Bezos-Owned Washington Post Embeds Amazon Buy-It-Now Buttons Mid-sentence

Futurepower(R) Bezos asks for more U.S. government corruption? (134 comments)

I was wondering why the Washington Post was spamming me! How did the Washington Post get my email address? Now I know. Jeff Bezos is allowing his "personal purchase" to have the email address I gave to Amazon.

Bezos apparently bought the Washington Post so that he can use it to try to force legislators to give him attention. The U.S. is becoming even more a rich-get-richer country.

The subjects of the spam messages:

{SPECIAL PREVIEW} Summer Sale: JUST $19 -- SAVE UP TO 81% OFF -- for One Year of Unlimited Digital Access!

{24 HOURS ONLY} Summer Sale: JUST $19 -- SAVE UP TO 81% OFF -- for One Year of Unlimited Digital Access!

{EXTENDED} Summer Sale: JUST $19 -- SAVE UP TO 81% OFF -- for One Year of Unlimited Digital Access!

I think it is a very effective advertising campaign. The effect will be that people will try to avoid buying things from Amazon. Also, after the "Summer Sale", digital access to the Washington Post will cost $100 per year!

about a week ago
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Comcast Drops Spurious Fees When Customer Reveals Recording

Futurepower(R) What about Oregon and Washington? (364 comments)

In other states, like Oregon, part of the recording must include a question about whether it is okay to record, and the answer. So the question is asked twice.

Does anyone know whether it is okay to record conversations when the other party's recorded message says the call is recorded? Washington state and Oregon are 2 about which I'd like to know, with links to the law.

It's crazy that each state has its own laws! It's crazy that Comcast is allowed to be so abusive. CenturyLink, the phone company in Oregon and SW Washington state, is also hostile to customers, in my experience. We are becoming a country where the rich can do anything they want to everyone else.

Is the answer always to record? If legal, I think yes.

about two weeks ago
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Ancient Skulls Show Civilization Rose As Testosterone Fell

Futurepower(R) Nonsense in scientific language (387 comments)

This is part of the extreme hostility toward men in the U.S. culture.

The body is extremely complicated. There are maybe a million chemicals? Choosing one supposedly connected with men but actually present in both men and women, testosterone, and talking about its importance is thinly veiled hostility.

The current wave of hostility of women toward men began with the book The Second Sex, by Simone de Beauvoir, a woman who was very confused about life. The book mentioned negative things men do, and avoided mentioning the negative things women do. Part of her viewpoint was influenced by the fact that she was trying to get women to have sex with her.

There is a movie that shows Simone de Beauvoir was treated as an equal by Jean-Paul Sartre, a French philosopher and friend. She was not second.

Both Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre had terrible childhoods and both did things in their adult lives that demonstrated their confusion.

The Washington Post article linked in the Slashdot summary says, "No, this isnâ(TM)t some jab at dudes." Yes it is, and extremely stupid about biochemistry and civilization, also.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Many Employees Does Microsoft Really Need?

Futurepower(R) Whew! No worries. Dilbert is still slightly ahead. (272 comments)

For a moment I was worried that Dilbert cartoon craziness was falling behind real-world craziness. I'm relieved that Dilbert is still ahead:
Most of us are only pretending to work while secretly hoping the project gets canceled after you get fired by the board.

Dilbert is not accurate, I think, about Microsoft. For Microsoft, the 6th panel,
"I expect the decline in morale to lead to violence"
should be
"I expect the decline in morale to lead to more decline in morale."

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Many Employees Does Microsoft Really Need?

Futurepower(R) Opinion: Satya Nadella is not a competent CEO. (272 comments)

It seems to me that anyone who says this, I synthesized our strategic direction..., is utterly incompetent at coordinating a large group. That is unthinking corporate-speak. It communicates non-verbally that he has no understanding of what is needed.

More:

"... realign our workforce..."

"... work toward synergies and strategic alignment..."

"... drive greater accountability..."

"... become more agile and move faster."

"... fewer layers of management, both top down and sideways, ..."

"... flattening organizations..."

"... increasing the span of control of people managers."

"... our business processes and support models will be more lean and efficient with greater trust between teams."
Comment: Corporate-speak does not build trust, it destroys trust.

"... more productive, impactful teams..."

"Each organization is starting at different points and moving at different paces."
Comment: That is utterly obvious.

"We will realize the synergies..."

"... align to Microsoft's strategic direction."

"... we will focus on breakthrough innovation that expresses and enlivens..."

"... builds on our success in the affordable smartphone space..."

"... aligns with our focus..."

I'm very interested in the sociology of this. My understanding is that the Microsoft board of directors is utterly incompetent, has little understanding of technology, and merely chose the person to be CEO who was consistently most pleasant and ingratiating.

A competent CEO would not announce a huge advancement until it was already accomplished.

The sweeping changes Satya Nadella is announcing require huge amounts of research and understanding. It is simply not possible to accomplish successfully a re-organization of a huge company as though it were one action.

A competent top coordinator would announce a little at a time and provide meaningful and detailed explanation about why each change was necessary, and how decisions were made.

A competent top coordinator would make it clear that much of the wisdom of ideas about changes came from other people inside the company.

My opinions.

about a month ago
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Today In Year-based Computer Errors: Draft Notices Sent To Men Born In the 1800s

Futurepower(R) Year-10,000 updates? (205 comments)

Our programs use 4-digit years. We tell our customers that they must notify us by the year 9,995 if they want year-10,000 updates. And, if we are expected to go to a different galaxy, they must pay for travel.

about a month and a half ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

Futurepower(R) Short life. (702 comments)

(The word "buy" should have been "buying".)

A small percentage of batteries are defective and have a short life.

about a month and a half ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

Futurepower(R) Battery not removeable? No HTC One M8 for me. (702 comments)

A few days ago I was thinking of buying an HTC One M8 because the camera takes very clear close-ups. When I discovered that the battery cannot be removed, I decided I probably won't ever buy anything from HTC.

If a company engages in sneaky, tricky behavior, I try to avoid buy its products. The sneakiness and trickery I know about may be only part of the attempts to trick the customers.

about a month and a half ago
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Researchers Claim Wind Turbine Energy Payback In Less Than a Year

Futurepower(R) Thanks for the comment. (441 comments)

Very interesting. Except for the misspelled words, very well written. I'm interested in any links you have concerning those subjects.

about 2 months ago
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Overkill? LG Phone Has 2560x1440 Display, Laser Focusing

Futurepower(R) What evidence do you have of Gates intelligence? (198 comments)

What evidence do you have that Bill Gates is intelligent? I'm serious. What evidence?

His father is a lawyer. Bill Gates did what lawyers do. He was extremely hostile toward the opposition. Because most people were so ignorant about technology, Microsoft was able to dominate. In my opinion, the dominance of Microsoft was due to the hostility, not to the quality of Microsoft's products.

Read the book, Idea Man: A Memoir by the Cofounder of Microsoft, by Paul Allen (PDF file). Paul Allen quit Microsoft because he did not want to be around Bill Gates' anger. For example, see this quote from page 157:

"Whenever we locked horns, I'd have to raise my intensity and my blood pressure to meet Bill's, and it was taking a toll. Some people can vent their anger, take a breath, and let it go, but I wasn't one of them. My sinking morale sapped my enthusiasm for my work, which in turn could precipitate Bill's next attack."

about 2 months ago
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Intel Offering 3-D Printed Robot Kits

Futurepower(R) AMAZINGLY bad management at Intel (26 comments)

More specifically, Intel has a TERRIBLE reputation in 2 areas:
1) Announcing something when it is far from finished.
2) Producing "consumer" items no one wants.

Examples:
2001: Intel closing consumer electronics unit
2011: Intel drops smart TV to focus on smartphones, tablets and thin laptops

Some experiences:

In 2012, I was visiting an Intel web page. A pop-up asked me to take a survey. I said yes. I mentioned several management problems at Intel. I said that the problems at Intel started at the top. For example, the then CEO, Paul Otellini had paid $6 billion for McAfee. I said that, in my opinion, McAfee software was worse than useless, that McAfee had no connection with Intel's business, and that the $6 billion was entirely wasted. (Last week I mentioned McAfee anti-virus software to a programmer acquaintance who works for a bank. He said McAfee anti-malware software is worse than the malware it is supposed to protect against.)

I'm not saying I had any influence, but 3 months later it was announced that Otellini would no longer be CEO of Intel.

This is my understanding from talking with friends and acquaintances who work at Intel: The processor and chipset division is managed quite well. Apparently Intel top management doesn't mess with that, maybe because they don't understand anything about it.

Non-technical people can't manage technological companies! To manage Intel well, it is necessary to have technology in your heart and be fascinated with the details. And, at the same time, it is necessary to have the social ability to manage a large company.

Several years ago I called an Intel support person and showed him a huge mistake in the description of an Intel product. He said something like, "We are re-doing the web site. We will fix that soon." A year later, I talked to the same man. He didn't remember me, but I remembered him, and had written his name. I mentioned the same error. He gave the same excuse again.

Another experience: Several years ago I wanted to buy Intel motherboards. It took 2 hours to become a member of some online Intel group and find the exact model number.

Remember Intel Bunny People dolls? Apparently someone at Intel thought that processor and motherboard buyers would be motivated by a cute doll.

It is my understanding that Intel's incompetence continues. It surprises me, but my own personal opinion is that I would be a far better manager than what Intel has now. One of the biggest problems in the entire world is the rarity of good management.

about 2 months ago
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Former NSA Chief Warned Against Selling NSA Secrets

Futurepower(R) NSA = No Sensible Administration ? (138 comments)

It seems to me that the entire purpose of any secret government agency is to benefit the secret government agency.

Michael Moore is a self-taught movie maker. His movie about U.S. government corruption in secret agencies, Fahrenheit 9/11, made $222,446,882. It's not like extreme U.S. government corruption is unknown.

There is a HUGE conflict of interest, and the U.S. government seems to have no influential methods of dealing with conflicts of interest. If there is security, people who work for the NSA are less likely to be promoted, and may lose their jobs. That is a powerful reason for NSA employees and management, and other secret U.S. government agencies, to create more insecurity. Since they work entirely in secret, no one can stop them.

U.S. government policies allow many secret agencies. I find it odd that news stories assume that, other than doing things that almost no citizens want, the secret agencies are otherwise well-managed. Numerous examples show that they aren't. For example, Edward Snowden, an employee of an NSA sub-contractor, was able to walk away with all the data.

To me, it is also odd that news stories assume that the NSA works to improve security of the U.S. and U.S. citizens. For example, the book House of Bush, House of Saud explains that the Bush and Cheney families worked for the Saudis, who paid them billions for their help. The U.S. taxpayer paid for the arms, military presence, and violence that supposedly was free security for the Saudi government, but actually was, as Saudi acquaintances I met in a gym said long before the 9/11 attack, Saudi government oppression of the Saudi people.

Why does the NSA record phone calls? Is it because learning about some of those calls makes money for someone in control? Investment information, perhaps?

The U.S. government's war in Iraq is now being called a "mistake". For example, Hans Blix: Iraq War was a terrible mistake and violation of U.N. charter. It wasn't a "mistake", other articles say, it was deliberate deception. For example, Stop Calling the Iraq War a 'Mistake'.

NSA = No Sales for America. The NSA is a powerful advertisement that anything complicated made by a U.S. manufacturer may have intentional defects or surveillance methods.

about 2 months ago
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EFF To Unveil Open Wireless Router For Open Wireless Movement

Futurepower(R) Most people don't have that option. (184 comments)

"In that case, out comes the ISP modem, in goes an aftermarket configurable modem.

That's an option available only to technically-knowledgeable users.

about 2 months ago
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US House of Representatives Votes To Cut Funding To NSA

Futurepower(R) The NSA helps Chinese sell technology products? (164 comments)

NSA = No Sales for America. The NSA is a powerful advertisement that anything complicated made by a U.S. manufacturer may have intentional defects or surveillance methods.

U.S. government policies allow many secret agencies. I find it odd that news stories assume that, other than doing things that almost no citizens want, the secret agencies are otherwise well-managed. For example, in the case of Edward Snowden, someone who worked for a sub-contractor was able to walk away with all the data.

To me, it is also odd that news stories assume that the NSA works to improve security of the U.S. and U.S. citizens. For example, the book House of Bush, House of Saud explains that the Bush and Cheney families worked for the Saudis, who paid them billions for their help. The U.S. taxpayer paid for the arms, military presence, and violence that supposedly was free security for the Saudi government, but actually was, as Saudi acquaintances I met in a gym said long before the 9/11 attack, Saudi government oppression of the Saudi people.

There is a HUGE conflict of interest, and the U.S. government seems to have no influential methods of dealing with conflicts of interest. If there is security, people who work for the NSA are less likely to be promoted, and may lose their jobs. That is a powerful reason for NSA employees and management to create more insecurity. Since they work entirely in secret, no one can stop them.

Michael Moore is a self-taught movie maker. His movie about U.S. government corruption in secret agencies, Fahrenheit 9/11, made $222,446,882. It's not like U.S. government corruption is a secret.

The U.S. government's war in Iraq is now being called a "mistake". For example, Hans Blix: Iraq War was a terrible mistake and violation of U.N. charter. It wasn't a "mistake", other articles say, it was deliberate deception. For example, Stop Calling the Iraq War a 'Mistake'.

about 2 months ago
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How Tim Cook Is Filling Steve Jobs's Shoes

Futurepower(R) The New York Times authors are would-be novelists. (209 comments)

The New York Times article Slashdot mentioned, Tim Cook, Making Apple His Own, is an example of the collapse of the New York Times.

The authors are WRITERS (Heavenly horn sounds). The first 4 paragraphs are examples of their intent to tell stories like novelists, avoiding writing boring stuff like news. And, of course, WRITERS don't care about messy things like technology, even if they write about technology companies.

It's okay to put in some facts to give novels a feeling of realism: "And the [Apple] stock price fell nearly in half from its 2012 peak to the middle of 2013" Then: "To shore up shareholder faith, Mr. Cook split the stock, increased the dividend and engineered a $90 billion buyback -- steps that helped shares rebound almost entirely." The price of stock goes up when someone buys a lot of it.

But novelists have problems. Sometimes facts are more weird than any novelist would invent: "rap star Dr. Dre ... will join Apple." The Wall Street Journal's novelists say Apple is "Tapping Tastemakers to Regain Music Mojo". Apple will sell "high-end headphones", under the Beats name. What could go wrong?

Mr. Cook is not much like Steve Jobs. He supports brand confusion: "Mr. Cook is trying to broaden Apple's brand, too, taking to Twitter and other public venues to express support for environmentalism and gay rights (and for Auburn University football)."

There are big hopes for the Apple iWatch "... according to people involved in the project, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to press." Steve Jobs fired people who announced products early because announcing early creates brand confusion.

The whole point of being a novelist is to avoid unpleasant realities. It's like being a drugee, but without the drugs. Don't get involved with messy issues. Quoting: "Jonathan Ive, the head of design at Apple ... says Mr. Cook has not neglected the company's central mission: innovation. 'Honestly, I don't think anything's changed,' he said."

Mr. Cook wrote an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal in support of proposed federal legislation protecting gay, lesbian and transgender workers.

Nothing has changed?

Another quote: "Last July, a federal judge ruled that Apple had illegally conspired with publishers to try to raise prices in the e-books market; Apple is appealing."

And this: "Apple has also started building apps for Android systems".

Novelists like to live in their fantasy worlds. They don't want to think about messy news like the beginning of a gay, rap-singing, law-breaking, watch-making Apple that makes software for Google.

The real story? Apple and the New York Times are both spiralling downwards, in my opinion.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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Problems with Windows XP caused by Microsoft.

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  about 4 months ago

Futurepower(R) (558542) writes "We are seeing 4 kinds of problems with Windows XP today at 2 remote locations:

1) One kind of problem is similar to the one in this April 7, 2014 story about computers in Australia: Pop-ups irritate Windows XP's remaining users. Microsoft Security Essentials on computers in the United States give pop-up messages about the MSE service being stopped.

2) Computers are requiring far longer to start, perhaps 12 to 15 minutes. Then the MSE pop-up appears.

3) Microsoft Security Essentials now calls into question whether XP is genuine. These are all computers that have run without issues for several years. The customer bought licenses when Windows XP was first released.

4) We have seen problems with the Windows XP operating system detecting a key stuck down when no keys were pressed on the keyboard. That is a software problem, not a keyboard hardware problem. It causes the system to be un-responsive because the key being detected is not one actually pressed, but is actually a key combination. Again, that is happening on computers that have been trouble-free for years. That problem began happening after a Windows update.

Microsoft said it would support MSE on Windows XP for another year. See the Microsoft article, Microsoft antimalware support for Windows XP. Apparently that support is not happening in the normal way."
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Windows XP did not instantly become unsafe on April 8.

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  about 4 months ago

Futurepower(R) (558542) writes "Windows XP did not instantly become unsafe on April 8, 2014, the date Microsoft calls the "end of life" for Windows XP.

"End of life" is a way for Microsoft to make more money. Governments and big corporations are often influenced by people with no technical knowledge. Because of their ignorance, governments have already paid Microsoft probably more than it costs to fix the few security defects found each year. However, the taxpayers of those governments will not be allowed to have the fixes.

It's like Toyota told all owners of older Toyota vehicles that the vehicles are unsafe now and owners must buy new vehicles or pay millions of dollars to keep them. Except its worse: Software doesn't have mechanical wear.

This article contains tips about how to use any version of Microsoft Windows safely that can be shared with people you want to help. Unnecessary computer maintenance is an ugly way to make money."
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How to turn off Slashdot Auto-Refresh?

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  about a year ago

Futurepower(R) (558542) writes "Slashdot's Auto-Refresh is annoying. I go to another window to do something, and when I come back, what I was reading is not there!

How do I turn Auto-Refresh off?"
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Book software?

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "What is the best software to organize and print a book? The software must order and format all the chapters, generate the table of contents and the index, and allow HTML links inside PDF files. Good documentation and ease of use for non-technical operators would be a big plus."
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Mozilla Foundation should fix Firefox instability.

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Unfortunately, Mozilla Foundation suffers from poor management. The rapid unexplained major version changes are only the most visible evidence.

Mozilla Foundation is a rich, rich corporation. No one should make the mistake of thinking that work on Firefox is done mostly by volunteers.

Did you see $78.6 million worth of improvements in 2008?

Did you see improvements suggesting that Mozilla Foundation had $168 million in assets in 2010? (Official PDF file, see page 2. Numbers are in thousands, as it says at the top of the page.)

Firefox is a world-class asset. Firefox is extremely important partly because those who need to do a lot of research online depend on Firefox and Firefox add-ons such as Session Manager, Session Manager Export Tool, Mozilla Archive Format, Flashblock, Multi Links, and Tab Mix Plus. There is no substitute for the capabilities of Firefox together with Firefox Add-ons. (Add-ons are also known as extensions and plug-ins.) For those who do research, Firefox is simply the best browser. Firefox is literally a world-class asset.

Biggest flaw: Firefox is unstable. The first step in improving management would be to fix the instability of Firefox. There would be a huge additional advantage in doing that, as someone else mentioned. Investigating how Firefox can be so unstable under Microsoft Windows might reveal flaws in Microsoft Windows that make the OS so unstable when using Firefox.

Firefox instabilities are experienced most frequently by those who open many Firefox windows and tabs, and leave them open while putting the computer into standby or hibernation several times. That is the pattern of use of those who do a lot of online research.

An example of research: For example, in researching HDMI cables there are numerous manufacturers, distributors, online sellers, explanations of HDMI standards, explanations of the U.S. National Electrical Code, and online reviews. The research is made far more complicated by the many companies that try to take advantage of the ignorance of the average person about cables. Good research is important because HDMI cables are often embedded in the infrastructure of buildings. Poor cables may need to be replaced when video equipment is upgraded, sometimes requiring tearing walls apart. Equipment upgrades may be years away, but are almost certain to happen.

One condition of instability: Windows XP 32-bit with Service Pack 3, for example, becomes unstable when Firefox has taken all the available memory, and is beginning to require the OS to use virtual memory. It seems a reasonable guess that Microsoft will be slow to fix Windows instabilities since poor experiences encourage people to buy new versions. Microsoft requires payment of the full price for each new version of Windows. Microsoft does not allow upgrade pricing even when a previous version has had many flaws, as with Microsoft Windows Vista. The laws against unfair business practices of those who have virtual monopolies have had no effect on Microsoft, apparently.

Firefox crash info: Here are some links for those who want to discover more about the instabilities in Firefox.

about:crashes
Put about:crashes into your URL bar and press ENTER. Firefox will then show a list of crashes of the copy of Firefox on that computer.

Crash info for all users and all versions
https://crash-stats.mozilla.com/products/Firefox

Crashes per 100 active daily users, version 7.0.1, last week's version
https://crash-stats.mozilla.com/products/Firefox/versions/7.0.1

Top crashers, version 7.0.1
https://crash-stats.mozilla.com/topcrasher/byversion/Firefox/7.0.1/14

Notes:

1) The lists of crashes are ONLY the ones that Firefox caught. The lists do NOT include crashes that don't start the crash reporter.

2) Version 7.0.1 sometimes stays in memory even though the GUI was closed.

3) The crashes are often preceded by rapidly increasing memory use. Firefox often corrupts Microsoft Windows, so that Windows needs to be re-started. When Firefox corrupts Microsoft Windows it often damages operations in Windows that are not connected with browsing.

4) The crashes and memory gobbling have been reported for more than 10 years, since version 0.9 of Mozilla Suite, before Mozilla began using the name Firefox. Firefox is still unstable even though the change reports for every version say there have been "stability improvements".

5) Versions 4 to 7 of Firefox were more unstable than the Firefox 3.6.x versions. Version 7.0.1 is more stable than the others, but still unstable. So there has been some improvement. This week's version, 8.0, is too new to have extensive statistics."
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Western Digital buys Hitachi, Seagate buys Samsung

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Western Digital is buying the Hitachi hard drive division and Seagate is buying the Samsung hard drive division. So the major hard drive competitors will be reduced from 4 to 2.

Hitachi recently plead guilty in the U.S. to bid-rigging and price-fixing conspiracies. Samsung recently plead guilty in the U.S. to a price-fixing conspiracy.

The European Commission is investigating both the Western Digital-Hitachi and the Seagate-Samsung hard drive division mergers. Apparently there is no action by the U.S. government concerning the mergers.

Will having only two major makers of hard drives make it easier to raise prices?"
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Western Digital buys Hitachi, Seagate buys Samsung

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Western Digital is buying Hitachi and Seagate is buying Samsung. So the major hard drive competitors will be reduced from 4 to 2.

Hitachi has recently plead guilty in the U.S. to bid-rigging and price-fixing conspiracies. Samsung has also recently plead guilty in the U.S. to a price-fixing conspiracy.

The European Commission is investigating both the Western Digital-Hitachi merger and the Seagate-Samsung merger. Apparently there is no action by the U.S. government concerning the mergers.

Will having only two major makers of hard drives make it easier to raise prices?"

Link to Original Source
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Best framework for database programs?

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "We want to write an application that uses a database. What is the best C++ GUI framework?

Also, what open source database applications are good examples of coding using that framework? We are interested in the PostgreSQL v8.4 and/or SQLite v3.6 free databases.

The cross-platform Nokia Qt 4 framework is impressive, and the database classes look clean, but the license causes concern. The Qt 4 license says that if any work was done with the free version of Qt 4 it cannot be used in a commercial environment unless it is licensed as GPL. Technically that means that someone experimenting at home could corrupt an application written for commercial use. GUI design is done with Qt Designer.

WxWidgets is also cross-platform, free, and has database classes. Apparently there is no support for SQLite. There is a commercial application, WxDesigner, for designing GUIs.

Dabo looks helpful for desktop database applications.

SQLite Database Browser is an example of a open source SQLite database application using the Qt framework.

There is a extensive list at the The GUI Toolkit, Framework Page, but no indication if the frameworks have database classes, and the latest update to the page was in 2007.

An open source example of good coding for database access and good GUI design would help us avoid the usual hassles."
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Lessons from the Haiti earthquake

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Writing in the scientific journal Nature, seismologist Roger Bilham says, "Every possible mistake was evident: brittle steel, coarse non-angular aggregate, weak cement mixed with dirty or salty sand, and the widespread termination of steel reinforcement rods at the joints between columns and floors of buildings where earthquake stresses are highest."

About 15% of the more than 2.5 million people in Port-au-Prince were killed or injured and about 1.5 million people are now homeless, a consequence of many decades of unsupervised construction permitted by a government oblivious to its plate-boundary location.

"Calculations show a 1–2% chance of magnitude-7 earthquakes ... before 22 February [2010]. Such forecasts are not an exact science... Yet there is no doubt that the recent shock has enhanced the risk of another earthquake."

"The catastrophic earthquakes that have occurred since 1999, in Turkey, Taiwan, Sumatra, Kashmir and Sichuan, demonstrate that elementary engineering guidelines for earthquake resistance in crucial civil structures (schools, hospitals and fire stations,) have been alien concepts to local authorities, or have been ignored."
"

Link to Original Source
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What makes Windows slow and unreliable?

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  about 5 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Windows users often talk about re-loading Windows because it has become slow or unreliable. In your experience, what causes the problems?"
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Dave Chappelle show demonstrates Twitter's power.

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Dave Chappelle's surprise show demonstrated the power of social networking. Drawn by rumors on Twitter and Facebook of a free performance, a crowd estimated at 2,500 to 4,000 packed into a downtown Portland, Oregon square after midnight on Wednesday."
Link to Original Source
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Sun Microsystems: What are your theories?

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Why has Sun Microsystems not done particularly well in the last few years? Why are they finding it necessary to sell themselves to Oracle? My theory is that the highly reliable hardware Sun Microsystems sells is no longer popular because it is far cheaper to use consumer-grade hardware with software that is fault-tolerant. The excellent 2008 book Planet Google describes Google's experiences on page 54: "For about $278,000 in 2003, [Google] could assemble a rack with 176 microprocessors, 176 gigabytes of memory, and 7 terabytes of disk space. This compared favorably to a $758,000 server sold by the manufacturer of a well-known brand, which had only eight multiprocessors, one-third the memory, and about the same amount of disk space."

Why would Oracle buy Sun? Possibly because there are difficulties in making Oracle database products work with the new fault-tolerant technology. For example, fault-tolerant technology may require performing all database modifications on 4 computers at the same time, and Oracle may not want to sell 4 licenses for one application at the same price as the 1 license used with the more expensive high-reliability equipment.

What are your ideas about the sale of Sun, and Oracle's interest? There are many people with far more knowledge about this than I have."
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Moving money to and from other currencies?

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "We need to move money to and from U.S. dollars, Euros, and Brazilian Reais. It's obvious that the banks are in control; our banks charge a large fee, take a percentage, and decide the exchange rate themselves. Is there a fair way to move money?"
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CNN pushes this year's most abusive EULA.

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Windows Secrets has a story about CNN's use of software called Octoshape that presents an incredibly abusive EULA. If you agree to the EULA, you agree that CNN can use your bandwidth, and that you will pay any costs. Also, you lose the right to monitor your own network traffic. You can't even use information collected by your own firewall. Quoting the EULA:

"You may not collect any information about communication in the network of computers that are operating the Software or about the other users of the Software by monitoring, interdicting or intercepting any process of the Software. Octoshape recognizes that firewalls and anti-virus applications can collect such information, in which case you not are allowed to use or distribute such information."

Adobe is allowing the Octoshape company to use its Flash update install software.

What would YOU say to the CEOs of CNN and Adobe? Personally, I'm waiting for the time when all the CEOs with no appreciation of technological issues have retired."

Link to Original Source
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Election Fraud in the U.S. [MORE CORRECTIONS]

Futurepower(R) Futurepower(R) writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Futurepower(R) writes "Rolling Stone magazine has an article about vote stealing in 2008: Block the Vote: Will the GOP's campaign to deter new voters and discard Democratic ballots determine the next president? That article is also available as a PDF file.

The Brennan Center for Justice at the NYU School of Law has another article: Voter Suppression Incidents 2008. A PDF is available.

Neither of those articles discuss how votes are stolen using computer fraud. Slashdot has run 17 stories in 2007 and 2008 about computer vote fraud and electronic voting, listed here in reverse order by date:

West Virginia Voters Say Machines Are Switching Votes.
Black Box Voting 2008 Election Protection Toolkit
How To Spot E-Vote Tampering?
Hard Evidence of Voting Machine Addition Errors
New Jersey E-Voting Problems Worse Than Originally Suspected
The Cost of Electronic Voting
Sequoia Vote Machine Can't Do Simple Arithmetic?
Ohio Investigating Possible Vote Machine Tampering Last Year
Diebold Voter Fraud Rumors in New Hampshire Primaries
Ohio's Alternative to Diebold Machines May Be Equally Bad
All Fifty States May Face Voting Machine Lawsuit
Judge Voids Un-Auditable California Election
Re-Vote Likely After E-Vote Data Mishandling
A Flawed US Election Reform Bill
House To Vote On Paper Trail and OSS Voting Bill
U.S. To Certify Labs For Testing E-Voting Machines
U.S. Bars Lab From Testing E-Voting Machines"

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