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Comments

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Do You Need Headphones While Working?

JeffTL Not a good idea.... (262 comments)

....considering as I am a salesman. If I or my customers are wearing headphones it gets in the way.

about 10 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Tech For Small Library Automation?

JeffTL Not so - plus a suggestion (188 comments)

You're making several inaccurate presumptions. First, non-academic library users do come from all generations. Second, electronic systems are not more complicated than card catalogs from the user perspective -- most libraries find that general use of the library goes up when an electronic catalog is established, due to their making it easier to find materials. As for the topic at hand, if the group is familiar with library automation, I presume that some of them may also be familiar with cataloging enough to be able to make good use of something like Evergreen -- it scales down to small libraries quite well. Delicious Library sounds like a good idea but it can't handle MARC records like you can download from the Library of Congress for many books (or using the Z39.50 protocol, from many other institutions including research libraries), and I've found it to be rather weak on authority control. Evergreen and similar will allow for proper copy cataloguing from LC or other major libraries instead of just Amazon, which Delicious seems to use.

more than 2 years ago
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25% of Car Accidents Linked to Gadget Use

JeffTL One more reason to ride public transportation (317 comments)

On the bus, train, or streetcar, or an airplane if you're going between cities, you can use any device you want except a music player without headphones (which is against the rules on probably most systems). I take the Chicago Transit Authority's buses and trains all the time, plus Metra trains on occasion, and loads of people are always using newspapers, books, Kindles, smartphones, iPods, iPads, you name it. They had to crack down on the drivers using phones a while back, but for everyone else it's not a problem.

more than 3 years ago
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I can see X LEDs as I fall asleep. X = __

JeffTL Let's see... (480 comments)

::scurries across the apartment to take a look::

One on my wife's hearing aid dryer, one LCD clock (and another with what I believe to be an incandescent bulb backlighting the dial), one to help me find my flashlight in the dark, and whatever shines through our windows overlooking the Chicago Loop.

more than 3 years ago
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Does Net Neutrality Violate the Fifth Amendment?

JeffTL Re:Well, that was stupid. (341 comments)

I don't see why an ISP wouldn't be a common carrier. Just like the phone company, a railroad, or an airline, it uses public space to transport goods (information, in this case, just like the phone company) on behalf of the public.

about 4 years ago
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Scrabble To Allow Proper Nouns

JeffTL "facebook" is a common noun (377 comments)

I get the writer's point, but a facebook is something not unlike a yearbook, and really the ancestor of the proper-noun Facebook. Not in every dictionary as it is a limited use term, but it has been out there for a long time.

more than 4 years ago
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US Lawmakers Eyeing National ID Card

JeffTL Re:Folks, what they're describing... (826 comments)

That's the fee for a new, full passport. Passport card alongside the book is just $20.

more than 4 years ago
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US Lawmakers Eyeing National ID Card

JeffTL Folks, what they're describing... (826 comments)

...is a Passport Card -- basically a secure national ID issued by the Department of State ($45 new, $35 renew for non-passport holders, $20 for passport holders, lasts 10 years). Over a million Americans, including myself, carry one -- that's more than the population of the Omaha metro area. It's for car, train, bus, and boat travel within North America, but can also be used as a single identification for getting a job (along with, if I recall, the standard ICAO-compliant passport and the green card), and is recognized by the TSA (for domestic air travel), liquor store, and just about anyone else who needs ID. The RFID chip just has a database pointer, which differs from the card number if memory serves, but it comes with a tin foil hat just in case.

What this idea amounts to is transferring or cloning the passport card program into Social Security or Homeland Security.

more than 4 years ago
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Why Are Digital Hearing Aids So Expensive?

JeffTL Re:Voc Rehab (727 comments)

She has great luck with it ... especially since her ear with the hearing aid often isn't as good with high frequencies as the implant is. She had it done at Boys Town National Research Hospital in Omaha. Effectively recovers that ear, after adapting to it, from profound to moderate hearing loss, and she can hear a lot better with it. No ill effects from the unilateral CI that I can tell...since the other ear is stronger, and can get by alright with the hearing aid, no sense implanting it.

more than 4 years ago
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Why Are Digital Hearing Aids So Expensive?

JeffTL Re:Voc Rehab (727 comments)

My fiancée got hers when she was 17 or so, in the worse of her two ears (profound in that ear, severe in the other, if memory serves). Gave her a marked improvement in both hearing and speaking. As with any surgery it carries some risks, but these are generally held to be remote by the most recent studies. For most people, the fact that getting to and from the clinic usually involves riding in a car is probably the biggest associated risk.

more than 4 years ago
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Why Are Digital Hearing Aids So Expensive?

JeffTL Voc Rehab (727 comments)

I'd suggest that you contact your state's vocational rehabilitation office, which specializes in equipping people with assistive technology so they can be productive members of society (i.e., get and keep a decent job). My fiancée is deaf, and she got a nice Phonak digital aid, a Naida V if memory serves, from the State of Nebraska last year (she uses a cochlear implant in the other ear and only needed one, but two can be arranged as well).

more than 4 years ago
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The World's First Commercially Available Jetpack

JeffTL At that price, why not a plane? (303 comments)

About $80K? Give me a break. I don't know how the learning curve differs, but you can get a small airplane for quite a bit less than that...plenty of general aviation airports out there, I know that much. It's an interesting idea and something might yet come of it, but when you can buy a used plane for so much less, I don't think it's anywhere near commercially viable yet.

more than 4 years ago
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New Plan Lets Top HS Students Graduate 2 Years Early

JeffTL 16 not too young (425 comments)

I know someone who started college at 16, first at the community college and then on to a 4-year institution. She now holds a Ph. D. and is dean for graduate studies at a public university in a major Midwestern city.

And two people who started at 14. One is the director of the allergy clinic at a research hospital, and a damn good doctor to boot, and the other is me. I'm 21 now and had a perfectly normal college experience -- graduated summa cum laude in 5 years, and am now just about done with my master's degree. None of the above seem any worse for the wear.

more than 4 years ago
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My keyboard has X-many keys; X=

JeffTL I love mine (430 comments)

I got a Unicomp Customizer 104 and the optional Mac modifier keys ($10 from Unicomp,if I recall correctly -- just ask on the phone) and it's the best keyboard I've had in over a decade. It has "only" 104 keys, but they're real keys.

more than 4 years ago
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The best pizza I have ever had, I found ...

JeffTL Thick pizza or thin pizza? (920 comments)

For thin pizza, Omaha's the place to be -- namely, Zio's (New York style) or La Casa (grilled pizza with romano cheese...very tasty).

FOr thick, Chicago or else. Medici on 57th in Hyde Park, just off the U of C campus, is quite tasty, as are Gino's and Lou Malnati's. I've only had the thin crust pizza at Carmen's but that was quite delicious as well.

more than 4 years ago
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National Satiety Alert System should be set at ...

JeffTL Perpetual Yellorange is okay (272 comments)

It seems to be perpetually at Yellow, except Orange for aviation, these days, because that is presumably the equilibrium level for preventative security. Maybe the system should be simplified to two levels: one of this Yellorange state, and red if the shit hits the fan.

more than 4 years ago
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Are There Affordable Low-DPI Large-Screen LCD Monitors?

JeffTL Bifocals, too (549 comments)

For those who already have to wear glasses, there are always bifocals -- I got Varilux progressives when I was 20, and have had far less headaches since.

more than 4 years ago
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Google Gives the Gift of Free Airport Wi-Fi

JeffTL OMA always free (158 comments)

Eppley in Omaha (world's cleanest airport, or so says the urinal, and I've not seen a cleaner airport yet) always has free WiFi. I see that Microsoft has sponsored MDW and DEN, which would be of use to me had I not already taken care of all my immediate business there.

more than 4 years ago
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How To Enter Equations Quickly In Class?

JeffTL Re:LyX (823 comments)

I'm dysgraphic, and I've used LyX for more complicated math stuff before. For simple stuff, just typing out descriptions in Word (TI83 or C++ style syntax for math works) is fairly efficient. Otherwise, some iteration of the Wacom Bamboo would allow you to use OneNote, Word for Mac, or other software to do notes with combined pen and keyboard input.

more than 4 years ago
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The Most Useless Key On My Keyboard Is...

JeffTL That would be the contextual menu key... (939 comments)

I'm using a Unicomp on a Mac, and ordered the Mac keycaps, so there is no Windows key or F-lock, and it's basically a Model M so forget media keys. Scroll Lock and Pause function as F14 and F15 and control brightness just like the brightness keys on an Apple keyboard. What was formerly the contextual menu key, however, does not seem to do anything at all.

more than 4 years ago

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