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The Best and Worst From CES 2013

JustABlitheringIdiot Huawei's Ascend Mate (152 comments)

So just how long before I can expect this to be the next big POS offered from T-Mobile?

Since they seem to have an issue getting better quality handsets, its inevitable that this Huawei phone will be theirs exclusively. I give it 4 months before it's their next "flagship" phone.

about a year and a half ago

USMA: Going the Extra Kilometer For Metrication

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:0.001km = 0.01hm = 1m = 10dm = 100cm = 1000mm (909 comments)

1 mm is roughly 1/32 Inches - so right off the bat there you've got have the accuracy that you asked for.

1/32 is approximately 26% smaller than 1mm. How is that even remotely accurate?

Consider, if you want a 3ft shelf and you estimate it using your method you would want a 1153mm shelf when what you really want is one approximately 914mm. That's a pretty big difference. Nevermind how that would scale to anything larger.

about a year and a half ago

USMA: Going the Extra Kilometer For Metrication

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:0.001km = 0.01hm = 1m = 10dm = 100cm = 1000mm (909 comments)

10mm of rain falls over a 1km^2 drainage area. How much volume does the drainage system have to dispose of?

Now do it for imperial with inches of rain and acres of area. Oh, and did you choose gallons or cu ft?

Proper measurement of rainfall like that would be acre-ft. So neither gallons or cu-ft would be appropriate.

about a year and a half ago

Insurer Measures Driver Safety With Smartphone App To Calculate Premiums

JustABlitheringIdiot Missing Metrics (345 comments)

Seems to me that this program is missing some critical metrics of driving safety. As an app it has the potential to monitor other phone activities while driving. I think that beyond the basic GPS based speed / location measurements and the accelerometer data they should be interested in how distracted the driver is by their mobile.

Say they're texting or browsing the web while driving but still doing the speed limit. The way this program is being described there would be no penalty. In reality the driver is by far more of a hazard to those around them and should pay a higher premium as they are more likely to be involved in an incident.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Linux Support In Universities?

JustABlitheringIdiot Drexel University (432 comments)

Linux is supported. They even have Linux versions of MAPLE and other software on the school FTP for the students to download.

I can't comment on their systems because I honestly don't remember. I just recall having access to the software and the availability of support if needed.

more than 3 years ago

Speed Tickets Challenged Based On Timestamped Photos

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:Glad someone is challenging this (566 comments)

I understand that speed limits are too low, but you're comlaining about getting a ticket for doing something illegal, because the exact extent to which you were violating the law was off by a fraction?

The thing is with speeding tickets magnitude matters. There is a graduated scale for the fines with larger fines and more points for exceeding the speed limit by more. So yes it makes sense to challenge the magnitude. If you get a ticket for 12 mph over the limit the fine is say $150 plus 2 points (numbers I'm pulling out of my ass but are fairly representative), now if the automated camera is adding 4 mph more on top that puts you at 16 mph over which would then put you at a $225 fine and 3 points. This is a nontrivial difference.

On a side note, as a designer of roads and bridges I can say that the speed limits are influenced by the geometry of the road and the location (i.e. while it may be geometrically possible it is a bad idea to have a residential street posted for 50 mph). There are some cases where unscrupulous towns/villages/cities will post a lower speed limit than the surrounding areas as a way to increase revenue. This is can be challenged court and is frequently overturned. Also in areas where there are lower posted speed limits for things like curves (black on yellow) and construction areas (black on orange) the lower limits per MUTCD are not enforceable as those signs particularly the black on yellow are just suggestions. To lower the posted limit the signs must be the standard regulatory black letters on white they can only jump 10 mph at a time (i.e. you can't go from a 45 to a 25 in one jump) and there must be advance warning signs "reduced speed ahead". When in doubt about a speed limit or regulatory sign or even a traffic light timing consult a good highway engineering text and the MUTCD.

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Privacy Paranoia

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:Use aliases. (323 comments)

recieving one rejection letter after another

Whoa, you mean people still send out rejection letters? Generally I never hear back from prospective employers (I've applied to probably 12 different companies over the last year heard back from 1), even when I try to follow up myself I get nowhere. After enough time passes I just give up hope completely.

more than 3 years ago

Smart Phone Gets Driver Out of a Speeding Ticket

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:The smart phone got him off? (254 comments)

Plus, they have the incentive of getting a day's pay for just sitting around in court surfing the web on their laptops until the case comes up and gets dismissed.

As a side note, police districts typically pay officers time-and-a-half or double-time for Court time.

Having been involved first hand with several Law Enforcement Agencies and actually knowing people in the courts who are the traffic clerks (they process all those tickets etc.) I can say that at least in my small end of PA the LEO's are not on overtime of any sort while in court. Typically the court block schedules the officers hearings (may attend several hearings back to back) on a day he is on his regularly scheduled shift. The officer then goes "out" at the court, meaning that he is occupied and will not be responding to other calls. After the hearing(s) the officer will then go back "in" and continue responding to incidents as needed. If he is off duty, he comes in on his own accord, most officers will not do that, on extremely rare occasions if you did something crazy or the officer has a bug up his ass will you see them not on a regular shift. If the prosecuting officer cannot attend because they are occupied with another incident or they are off the case is dismissed.

more than 3 years ago

Sony's Official Statement Regarding PS3 Hacking

JustABlitheringIdiot Is it possible (312 comments)

to create an alternate to PSN that people with hacked/homebrew systems can access? I see no problem Sony wants to lock you out from their network to preserve the playability/integrity of it, in fact that kinda makes sense to me. Just develop and manage a network just for the people who want to cheat/exploit and then everybody can still play. Access to the alternate network would probably require you to install some sort of patch redirecting your connection there which should be easy enough if the system is already rooted.

That's just my $0.02 if somebody wants to explain I'm more than happy to learn something new.

**Disclaimer** I am not a gamer and know nothing about the PS3

more than 3 years ago

Sony Updates PS3 Firmware To 3.56 To Stop Jailbreaking

JustABlitheringIdiot comments (218 comments)

Would you accept a locked-down device that offers a cheaper product, or is it 100% about the principle? For example, armed with the knowledge that Amazon can pretty much delete any book they want from your device at their whim, is there a price low enough that you'd be willing to pay? $1 / book, $20 for the device itself, for example.

Sure we all have our price. For the device if it is a locked down single purpose device I can't see paying more than the cost of the actual plastic and silicon it's made from plus maybe 10% for profit after all they did develop this wonderful device. For something open I'm willing to be more reasonable and I'll pay what would be expected, with the exception of if you are charging me 100% markup above materials, but that's not really reasonable anyway.

For media that I cannot control I would be willing to pay up to and no more than absolutely nothing. If I paid for it and you can take it away, I may as well not have paid for it because I sure as hell will NOT pay for it again. Give me a product that I can control and use the way I want to and I'm willing to pay a fair price for it whatever that may be $0.75/song $15-$20/book etc.

more than 3 years ago

Italian Consumer Watchdog Sues Microsoft Over 'Windows Tax'

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:starting the software means... (313 comments)

HPs hardware isn't what it used to be, and we've been really underwhelmed with it.

Absolutely agreed. I will never buy another HP laptop or a Dell laptop for that matter. HP because their hardware is garbage and prone to all sorts of failures (3 of the last 3 HP's I've had died within one year of ownership). Dell because they are also crap, if something breaks and I can repair it I want to have that option. I have a hard time doing that with Dell machines because of they use a proprietary combination and I'm not willing to pay their markup to get the parts.

I guess that old adage of buyer beware is more appropriate than ever before.

more than 3 years ago

Real-Life Frogger Ends In Hospital Visit

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:Stupid is as stupid does. (314 comments)

I was thinking more like this one here . I never had to be told don't try that yourself.

more than 3 years ago

Level 3 Shaken Down By Comcast Over Video Streaming

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:That would explain this email I got last week.. (548 comments)

"Dear Xxxxxxxx, We want to let you know about two important changes to the Netflix service. 1. The price of your current plan, which includes access to Blu-ray discs, is changing from $16.99 a month to $17.99 a month. This new price will be effective with your next billing statement on or after January 2, 2011, and will be referenced in your Membership Details. With your current plan you can both instantly watch unlimited TV episodes and movies on your computer or TV and receive unlimited DVDs by mail........." If I ever get a choice, I'll be dropping Comcast like a hot rock; its not bad enough that they raise the prices and cut the services they provide every year, but now on top of everything else, they are going to cause the cost of everything I do and/or subscribe to online to go up too? Jesus what a bunch of fuckin' douchebags....

This was a Netflix wide price increase. I don't have Comcast anymore and neither do several of my friends (not even in the service area) and we all got the same email. If I remember I think I got a letter in the snail mail too.

more than 3 years ago

Underwear Invention Protects Privacy At Airport

JustABlitheringIdiot I can see it now (325 comments)

A hot woman wearing this underwear hits a scanner and

TSA Agent: *snickers* "Ma'am I'm afraid there appears to be an anomaly with your underwear. I'm going to have to ask you to take them off."
Woman: "Take them off?!?!"
TSA Agent: "Yes please go right over there behind that one way see through privacy shield and oh don't mind the cameras they aren't HD capable."
FOX News: "Local woman arrested for refusing to take off her bomb concealing underwear for the TSA. She must be a terrorist otherwise she would have cooperated like and good American. It is Un-American to keep your underwear on."

more than 3 years ago

US Marshals Saved 35,000 Full Body Scans

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:is this what you're worried about? (712 comments)

Next time a terrorist blows up a plane, stand up and say, "yeah, it is sad and tragic. But we as a country have gone through far worse. We lost a million soldiers in WW II. 50K in Vietnam. Dresden, Berlin, Tokyo, London were all bombed mercilessly. We survived. Compared to that it losing two buildings and 3000 people is nothing. If we cower in our shoes and crap in pants, the terrorists have won. Just let us go back to normalcy."

Absolutely agreed. I've said the same thing before so you are not alone. But just like sex makes society uncomfortable so does death so this is a big pill for people to swallow. Thank you.

more than 3 years ago

US Marshals Saved 35,000 Full Body Scans

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:Shoot the messenger == no politicians left (712 comments)

images are being saved in the interests of national security and to use as evidence when and if potential threats are intercepted, and the perpetrators brought to justice".

Now I won't say that somebody in the interest of trying to sell the system to the masses didn't lie and say that the images are not stored. But, IIRC the answer from the people making the decision to implement and writing the spec was and always has been that an image is recorded and stored whenever an alert is triggered to be used as evidence in a trial.

I would suggest that given the need to keep the images from alerts as evidence that the gross failing of the system is the fact that these images were not encrypted and stored securely or destroyed after the person was cleared / the alert declared false.

more than 3 years ago

US Marshals Saved 35,000 Full Body Scans

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:so my choice is (712 comments)

Anybody know if all the TSA passenger regs apply to pilots of small aircraft?

No, but it’s really expensive to get a pilot’s license and rent or buy a small aircraft and pay for the fuel.

Not to mention you get on "the list" for being interested in obtaining a pilots license.

more than 3 years ago

The Story of My As-Yet-Unverified Impact Crater

JustABlitheringIdiot Re:Have studied Geomorphology (250 comments)

I'm not from USofA and thus have no idea if You will need to $$ to get it.

You don't always need to pay for a topo map. They can be found online here for free. I use these at work all the time and they are decent if not really out of date sometimes. All you need is the coordinates (can be had from google earth or maps).

Also I agree with previous poster RWarrior(fobw) it is probably a ferrous carbonate such as siderite or something similar and you have most likely found a sinkhole. Now if they are uncommon in your area you may have something special there.

more than 3 years ago



Google People Finder Aids Japan Quake Victims

JustABlitheringIdiot JustABlitheringIdiot writes  |  more than 3 years ago

JustABlitheringIdiot writes "Google has launched a version of its Person Finder service for people caught up in the Japanese earthquake.

The website acts as a directory and message board so people can look for lost loved ones or post a note saying they are safe.

It is designed to be embedded on websites and social network pages to reach as wide an audience as possible.

Several thousand records were submitted in the first few hours of the service being up."

Link to Original Source

Verizon Blocking Anonops

JustABlitheringIdiot JustABlitheringIdiot writes  |  more than 3 years ago

JustABlitheringIdiot (1773798) writes "I saw this posting today and yes it old older news but this /. after all.

In December 2010 Verizon pulled a dirty trick by silently blocking most all know IP addresses used by IRC, web and other server operated for Operation Payback. This move was made without notice to Verizon’s customers and without the ability to opt out of the blocking. It is unclear as to Verizon’s motivation for this censorship of the internet. One can speculate that they don’t want their FiOS service making the news as the straw that broke the camel’s back for the next web server to be hit by Anonymous.

Does anybody know if this is still going on? Also why didn't this make it on here sooner?"

Link to Original Source

Model describes universe with no big bang

JustABlitheringIdiot JustABlitheringIdiot writes  |  more than 4 years ago

JustABlitheringIdiot (1773798) writes "From the article:

By suggesting that mass, time, and length can be converted into one another as the universe evolves, Wun-Yi Shu has proposed a new class of cosmological models that may fit observations of the universe better than the current big bang model. What this means specifically is that the new models might explain the increasing acceleration of the universe without relying on a cosmological constant such as dark energy, as well as solve or eliminate other cosmological dilemmas such as the flatness problem and the horizon problem."

Link to Original Source


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