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Interview: Ask Richard Stallman What You Will

Irick Have you tried modern computing paridigms? (480 comments)

I've often heard it levied that some of the FSF's goals are a bit out of touch, and it's often been speculated that one of the root causes may be inexperience with the modern computer interface. Reading over even how you search for web pages, the pipeline is very unix but it would be nearly entirely alien to a modern computer user.

Do you think there is any value in trying to switch paradigms for a while?
(please disregard any loaded language that may have slipped through, i'm tired, but this question has been eating at the back of my head for a while)

about 7 months ago

Report: Space Elevators Are Feasible

Irick Scorge of Futurests? (374 comments)

Really? I was always under the assumption that space elevators were considered a good design and that we were just waiting for materials to present themselves that would be ideal for the conditions.

about 7 months ago

DARPA Funds Research Into a Network-Based Interpretation of Dreams

Irick So that dream where I am flying... (54 comments)

And then suddenly fall like a rock tword a large uncaring abyss with the screams of a uncountable more poor souls filling my ears as we collectively rush onward to an inevitable shared oblivion:
That's about packet loss?

about 7 months ago

French Team Implants First Long-Term Artificial Heart

Irick That's absolutely amazing. (106 comments)

Seriously, once in a while I like to kind of just take these sort of advancements at face value. It's just astonishing to me that we are so close to alleviating at least one facet of the organ transplant shortages that have so many people waiting for so long in uncertainty. This day could not get here fast enough and I hope that it becomes a true milestone down a great path for medical technology.

But damn that is an expensive pump.

about 9 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Can Valve's Steam Machines Compete Against the Xbox One and PS4?

Irick Steam Machines are an entirely new monster (348 comments)

It's not a question of if they can compete with established living room giants, It is if there is a niche for it to carve out. Valve has got great inroads with the PC gaming community. I don't see Steam Machines displacing consoles but I definitely see them as a way for Valve to carve out a place in the living rooms of their current clientele. SteamOS to throw on the old box in the living room, Steam Machines for the pre-built crowd wanting something that fits in with their other equipment.

about a year ago

First Laptop With Full-Sized Solar Panels Will Run On Ubuntu

Irick ~400$ submersible netbook? (155 comments)

That seems a bit more exciting then the whole solar power thing, but I suppose that's cool too.

about a year ago

How DRM Won

Irick I don't think streaming necessitates DRM (221 comments)

Streaming can be genuinely convenient, but it doesn't mean it is married to DRM. I would very much like the option of being able to stream and download content that I paid for in a non DRMed version for when I want to have the content now and save it for later. Just because current streaming services popularly use DRM does not mean it has "won".

about a year ago

Lead Developer of Yum Killed In Hit-and-run

Irick There have been so many... (413 comments)

It's sobering just how many of these great contributors to oss and technology in general have passed away these past few years. Mortality is not something I often contemplate at twenty two but I find it constantly popping up in the legacy of this subculture.

I really do wonder if we are predisposed to see death as a problem that needs to be solved, because all I can think of are the tragic losses of minds and icons that could be prevented somehow and how valuable that would be to humanity as a whole.

Seth will be missed and hopefully his work will live on.

about a year ago

EA Responds To Its Appearance In the 'Worst Company In America' Poll

Irick Re:Stomp your feet & say it isn't DRM. (208 comments)

Steam does distribute DRM free games. And when games use Steam DRM is at least sane. I have very few qualms with buying from Steam, even with the knowledge that in the post-apocalyptic future when Valve's servers go down i will have to add the worry of them not releasing a no DRM patch to my list right next to headcrab zombies.

about a year and a half ago

Netflix Using HTML5 Video For ARM Chromebook

Irick Re:Chrome sync is dangerous. (232 comments)

This is why you should use a separate pass phrase to encrypt synced data.

about a year and a half ago

Is "Left" Vs. "Right" Hard-coded Into Your Brain?

Irick Probably not (758 comments)

Your brain most likely reflects your views. Neuroplasticity and the such.

about a year and a half ago

US Judge Rules Against German Microsoft Injunction

Irick Woah Woah Woah Woah.... (272 comments)

I... AGREE?! I never thought i'd ever have to defend Microsoft, but uh... Motorola is being stupid with its patents. Not that Microsoft isn't guilty of the same stuff, but uh.. yeah. Not sure about the judicial system over here trying to influence the outcomes of others though. I mean, while i can again agree that Motorola should not be allowed to use an injunction like that, i think we should have full faith in the ability of other countries to um... govern themselves.

more than 2 years ago

Best Buy CEO Brian Dunn Resigns After $1.7 Billion Loss

Irick Re:I'm a best buy employee (513 comments)

I swear I formatted this.

more than 2 years ago

Best Buy CEO Brian Dunn Resigns After $1.7 Billion Loss

Irick I'm a best buy employee (513 comments)

I am pressured to attach high margin items by management. I am presented with numerical figures that support this strategy as ligitimently necessary for the long term survival of the company. It is difficult for me to attach these services, but i do make sure each customer is aware of their existence and i do try to tie it in to the points i am instructed to listen for in order to present the service's value. There is a second part that i usually skip. Management calls this "Overcoming Objections" and they are very vage as to what it really means. I have seen my co-workers do astonishing bits of social entering for a near mystical increase in attach rate of these value added services while mine just barely eek by the company average on a good day. However, i have never seen one of my co-workers flat out lie, as has been alleged several times in the comments i have read. However, management very, very strongly makes sure that we know to never misrepresent a product, because if it doesn't do exactly what we say the customer will return it and we will be out that margin, plus the open box discount if we even manage to sell it again. I give my customers a lot of data, and i get a lot of repeat business. However, this is usually from customers who have questions rather then those who are looking to buy. I have access every day and week if i request it to a detailed break down of the sales figures BestBuy's system has for me. Every day i go in with a bit of pride because of one of those numbers: returns. Out of every customer i've ever personally helped, 0.3% of them ever return anything. (i fully expect to be fired though, i'm honestly a horrible salesman) I think that BestBuy needs to reinvent itself to stay afloat. A few days ago I asked management about the state of the company. There is a firm air of denial in the retail outlets. I got a careful explanation about the losses posted as normal business expenses. Namely that the company had acquired some sell phone retailer overseas for something like 4 billion USD and that the retail side of things had been nothing but profitable. However, today i see the CEO has retired. This doesn't hold up to the story i was told. I wonder how much longer i'm going to be able to hold this position, it's been an interesting look either way. A year ago i'd probably be yelling about lying sales people too, but seriously, we're just... people. We don't enjoy what we have to do, even those of us who are particularly good at it. The top seller in my department hates how people react to him. Most of the time, the moment we go into services, even if we have been nothing but helpful and informative, people sour to us. I can understand this feeling, especially if someone is acting pushy, but honestly he rarely does. There is this huge stigma associated with salespeople, and even if we are just presenting a service as a viable choice (my managers probably hate me for this, they tell me i should stop asking my customers how they 'feel' about things. I just present the thing as truthfully and as relevantly as i can, then give them all the time they need to decide) we still get a measure of scorn for having the audacity to offer Accidental Damage from Handling or Technical Support, because the programs are clearly a scam (... geek squad's tech support is debatable depending on the guy you get, i'll admit that.). But seriously guys... we're not trying to screw you. Not even management really wants to screw you. We'd just prefer to make money... on every single opportunity we can... because we're a product of capitalism as an entity. But we're usually polite about it, and at least for the store i work at, i know nearly all of my co-workers are intelligent, truthful people I hope i'll do better as whatever i finally end up deciding on when i finally graduate. I hate having varied interests sometimes. .... also, entirely off topic, please remind people who rip open iPad/Tablet/Ereader/Handheld game console cases and just leave them on the floor to at least put them back together and somewhat _near_ the peg. I mean, i can understand sometimes with the android tablets because we almost never have a case made exactly for the less popular tablets, and i know 98% of sales people don't think twice about opening the things up for you to try out as long as it won't permanently destroy the box. ... but the iPad rack and the Ereader racks... i just don't understand. There are like, three models of iPad, that's it. It lists on the box the ones it fits on, why is it necessary to open up half the inventory and try it on you device? And e-readers.... i bet there are some obscure ones, but... /retail gripes.

more than 2 years ago

Linux 3.3 Released

Irick Nice to see AOSP code in the mainline kernal. (314 comments)

Seriously, they do some good work. I'm excited to see if this fixes sleep on some of the more obscure devices and gives us better power management.

more than 2 years ago

UK Student Jailed For Facebook Hack Despite 'Ethical Hacking' Defense

Irick 'Internet ethics' vs 'the hacker way' (356 comments)

I find it funny that people can even consider this an offense that requires pineal action. Issues of intelectual property notwithstanding (i disregard the notion of IP as a justifiably stable reference point for the issues at hand) this shows that vulnerabilities exist. This shows that an unauthorized third party can and did gain access to data that was supposively secure. Claiming that the man somehow cost the company money is a stupid argument, those holes existed, if you as a company want to retain trust or secrets you were going to plug them anyway, once brought to your attention. You, as a company decided to hook into an open and untrusted network, and allows communication to your information systems from that open and untrusted networks. These things are going to happen, no mater how much you prosecute offenders of archaic spacial relation laws. As a company that exists beyond a strict spacial plane, you must be savvy as to these underlying facts. If there is a hole, it will be exploited, and as the number of internet connected devices increases, so do the chances of those holes being exploited and the likelihood of a successful breach. You can't stop the curiosity of the human mind nor its ingenuity, and you should not seek to. It is simply not logistically possible to have the number of security professionals needed to have a 100% breach proof system. It is, however, possible to cultivate the huge amount of raw tallent ever steadily accumulating with those connected devices. It is not, however, possible to retain the benefit of benevolent pro-bono 'security consultants' if you demand all of them pay you money while you demonize them. You will never be able to keep your security up to snuff if your knee-jerk response is to punish curiosity. You need to be flexible. You need to be creative. You need to be curious. You need to want to improve your system in ways nor previously explored. In short, to survive, Facebook needs to learn that in being the largest information 'thief' on the internet means that it is necessary to take input form the benevolent 'thieves' pounding on their security 24/7. .... IMHO, of course.

more than 2 years ago


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