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Ask Slashdot: I Want To Read More. Should I Get an eBook Reader Or a Tablet?

Manip eInk (415 comments)

I would recommend eInk. Less eye-strain. Less battery drain (weeks between charges). And seems to work great in strong sunlight or other adverse conditions.

Tablets are multi-media devices. They do it all. eInk based e-readers are just for books and they do it exceptionally.

PS - The text on this page is insanely small and CTRL+ won't fix it. What the hell /.?

more than 2 years ago

MIT Creates Car Co-Pilot That Only Interferes If You're About To Crash

Manip Easier said than done (238 comments)

Anyone who has been paying attention to the "safety systems" similar to this on commercial aircraft should know that development of systems such as this always have unintended consequences. Even if they work flawlessly the flawless function could still potentially be dangerous.

Just as one example: sometimes "crashing" is the least-bad alternative available to a driver. Given the choice between hitting a person standing in the road or a row of water-filled barriers many drivers would correctly choose the barrier over the human. But this safety system will likely subvert that and take the choice away from the driver.

more than 2 years ago

Microsoft Announces 'Surface' Tablet

Manip No Battery Life or Price? (712 comments)

Without realistic battery life estimates and a price this might have well be Vaporware. If Microsoft had a decent track record for producing mobile devices we might be able to let it slide, but the truth is Microsoft's previous attempts at the mobile space have had horrible battery life (e.g. less than two hours).

My fear is that the Surface will be a wonderful tablet but will wind up with such a short battery life that nobody buys it for that very reason alone.

about 2 years ago

Ask the Space Command Team About All Things Sci-Fi

Manip What is it about? (100 comments)

I've seen your kick starter page and even the video but you fail to mention: What is the overarching plot of "Space Command?"

more than 2 years ago

IT Desktop Support To Be Wiped Out Thanks To Cloud Computing

Manip Wiped out or shifting? (349 comments)

You always see this kind of language when disruptive change occurs (e.g. production lines Vs. hand built, car Vs. carriage, electricity Vs. coal, etc) but all that really happens is the jobs shift from one area to another, and that people need to adapt or die.

Desktop Support MIGHT decline, but we will see growth in service level jobs at third parties. Instead of having in-house IT staff teach people how to use e-mail, you'll have someone across the country or globe do the same job.

I guess one might argue that you can shift the jobs abroad, but as we've seen in the last few years such out-sourcing is not cost effective in the long term (or at least with skilled jobs it isn't).

more than 2 years ago

Who's Pirating Game of Thrones, and Why?

Manip Re:Pure FUD. Available on iTunes (1004 comments)

GoT Season 2 isn't available on iTunes at all as of the time of writing. Season 1 was only added when it was released on DVD. This post is talking about pirating the currently airing season 2...

more than 2 years ago

US Mobile Carriers Won't Brick Stolen Phones

Manip It doesn't work... (269 comments)

First off I think carriers should do this; but that being as it may I will say that this doesn't really work in either the UK or Australia - phone theft has not disappeared or become less common as a result.

It is easy to understand why when you consider how trivial it is to unlock phones and then sell them on to international customers, particularly in Europe where a blocked phone in the UK might still be worth upwards of 300 euro on eBay Germany or France.

Another interesting question is - what, if anything, has Apple done? They could very easily block phones interacting with its iTunes stores if the phone was reported stolen in any part of the world but they haven't. Why is that?

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: How To Give IT Presentations That Aren't Boring?

Manip Pointless waste of time (291 comments)

The real question you should be asking is why you're holding this event to begin with if everyone attending has no interest in the material? It just sounds like a thirty minute waste of everyone's time or just a way to make you feel like you're contributing more or something.

While there are certainly things you can do to make it more interesting (relate it to their day to day, average e-mails sent per employee, average pages accessed in a day, etc) you really can't do the impossible without making the entire presentation about something else entirely.

My only suggestion would be to not "read from the slides." Material should either be coming out of your mouth OR on the slides, never both. It is fine to describe a graph on the screen or a diagram, it is horrible to read out a paragraph of text.

more than 2 years ago

UK Plan Would Use CCTV To Stop Uninsured Drivers From Refueling

Manip Re:Correction (691 comments)

The cameras used for average speed are also used for ANPR checks however. Some cameras are just for ANPR/monitoring and some are just traffic monitoring in general. Depends on the camera and location.

more than 2 years ago

UK Plan Would Use CCTV To Stop Uninsured Drivers From Refueling

Manip Correction (691 comments)

The UK already uses CCTV cameras on a massive scale to catch uninsured cars. Our motorways have cameras over every lane which track the numberplate and this information can both be used to calculate average speed over a section of road (to enforce speed limits) and also to check for insured, banned drivers, or stolen vehicles.

This is less a new idea as the /. summary implies and more just an expansion of an existing project.

more than 2 years ago

Estonian Tech University Bans Notebooks and Smartphones

Manip Good call! But exceptions? (134 comments)

In general I agree it is the right decision but they should consider making exceptions for students with special needs. Some students literally cannot write normally for medical reasons and they should be allowed to either type or be provided a recording of the lecture to type up notes later.

In general I think most people who bring a laptop to a lecture will be distracted by it, in particular if there is WiFi available. Unfortunately in the world of instant Facebook updates and e-mail alerts, it is very hard to remain focused even with the best intentions and frankly most students don't have the best intentions.

more than 2 years ago

Former Dell Execs Involved In Massive Insider Trading Probe

Manip Did pay off the right people? (149 comments)

Insider trading is hugely common in the corporate world to the point that there is an entire industry surrounding it (Wall Street). Any prosecutions for "insider trading" are totally political. They either upset someone in power, upset a competitor with powerful friends, or didn't do something they were asked to do.

See Quest's CEO as an example. He refused to allow the NSA to spy on Quest's customers and suddenly he is in jail for "insider trading." Opps.

more than 2 years ago

Tackling Open Source's Gender Issues

Manip Re:Community resistance (589 comments)

Surprisingly well written comment with links posted within 60 seconds of the article being up...

In general I have no issue with "encourage women" type schemes. In fact any effort to encourage people into OSS is fine by me. I do take issue with how whenever women are under-represented in any field or activity, it is always the fault of everyone else. I'm sure there are troubled elements in any community, and OSS is no different, but honestly perhaps women are just rare because women are rare in technology/engineering disciplines in general?

I'd like to see a comparison between OSS contributors (by gender) and women in CS programs. I bet there is a relationship...

more than 2 years ago

New Jersey DMV Employees Caught Selling Identities

Manip SSNs? (279 comments)

Why can normal day to day employees even view plain text social security numbers? Wouldn't it make a lot more sense to hide that information like banks do with credit card numbers?

Also, I find it ironic that these two relatively low level criminals will get the book thrown at them, but when the DMV legally sells that information to marketing companies everyone is happy. I guess they don't sell SSNs but still, thin line.

about 3 years ago

US Government Probes Huawei and ZTE

Manip Competing interests (122 comments)

The US might be doing this for honest reasons but then again they might be doing this because US based communications manufacturers are unhappy with companies like ZTE undercutting them using the free and Open Source Android OS.

I bet US based companies can find tons of patents that Chinese companies are infringing. But then again many of these patents are overly broad and are largely being used in an anti-competitive way.

Plus the whole accusation of spying, unless shown to be true, I read as akin to "buying from China isn't patriotic." If the US had evidence of ZTE spying on them you sure as hell would be reading about it right now.

about 3 years ago

Why Do Companies Backup So Infrequently?

Manip Re:To Tape... (403 comments)

You're mistaken, tape is a lot cheaper than hard drives. You can buy 1 TB of tape for as little as $30. The tape systems themselves are more expensive but the actual storage saving of using tapes very quickly makes it a worth while investment. I'd recommend anyone go and check the cost of tapes Vs. the cost of hard drives on Amazon if you care to.

I am aware that Hard Drive prices have recently increased due to the flooding but even before that, back when HDD prices were low, tapes still under-cut them. Even more so if you purchased your tapes in bulk.

more than 3 years ago

Windows 8 Secure Boot Defeated

Manip UEFI doesn't have MBR (205 comments)

Uhh UEFI literally has no MBR, it doesn't exist. So please explain to me how this exploit functions when the MBR doesn't exist? I think he is booting his drives in the wrong mode, which is to say legacy MBR mode instead of ADAPI/UEFI mode.

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: What's a Good Tablet/App Combination For Note-Taking?

Manip None (425 comments)

No tablet as exists today are incapable of taking good usable notes, or if they are (Microsoft OneNote running on a Samsung Series 7 with Windows 7) then they certainly won't exceed a regular laptop with a keyboard. People love to claim the technology is up to that stage but as someone who has foolishly wasted more money that I would like to admit on the tablet dream, I can tell you that, no, you're just wasting money.

The "main issue" I've found is two things, first off handwriting recognition is crap. Secondly that even when it works there isn't any real integration with the rest of the system, so the resulting text and diagrams is an uncategorised orphan unusable by anything of use.

Android and iOS are great consumers of content but they're terrible producers. The software is lacking, the interface designs are arse-backwards, and all it ultimately results in is an inefficient irritating system that you might have well not use. Things like the Android Transformer almost prove my point for me by opting for a keyboard and Microsoft Word-clone like software to increase your productivity. If the fact that the best Android can do is to copy a "normal" laptop then that is as damning of a statement of the state of tablets as I can tell.

more than 3 years ago

Google To Allow Location Service Opt-out

Manip Why do you care? (284 comments)

While it is nice of Google to offer this, I don't really understand why people care. The SID was always public information as are the location of the AP. So to then turn around and accuse Google of invade your privacy by recording what essentially you've told your AP to shout from the rooftops seems a little contradictory to me. It isn't like SIDs are personal or in any way linked to you as an individual or even your surfing activity.

So as I said, nice of Google to do this, but I'd question what anyone who opted out really hopes to accomplish by doing so...

more than 3 years ago

Is American Innovation Losing Its Shine?

Manip Patents, lawsuits, and healthcare (625 comments)

Want to know why small business is impossible in the US, three simple reasons: Patents, lawsuits, healthcare.

Patents are granted too easily, cover too much, and cover it for far too long. What's worse is that the damages are absolutely insane and companies can literally have your product banned from the entire country simply because you for example used a "menu" to "navigate a complex system" or some nonsense.

Lawsuits are too easy to bring in the US, too costly to defend, and there is no punishments for bringing frivolous suits. For small businesses one or two of these suits no matter how much merit they have can sink the company. So big businesses just sue for nothing and bankrupt small businesses.

Healthcare, too expensive, significantly more expensive for small businesses than big, and it discourages the best employees from working at smaller firms because they literally will have to pay 100% more per year for basic healthcare.

And while I have the soup box let's talk about political corruption allowing monopolies or duopolies to control the market and make it literally impossible via regulation or market manipulation for competitors to form (e.g. Cable, Internet, 3G, Cellular Services, Health Insurance, Health Providers, Drugs Producers, Children Toy Manufacturing, etc).

more than 3 years ago



Microsoft slams Firefox in "Get the Facts"

Manip Manip writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Manip (656104) writes "Microsoft has taken the plastic wrapping off its latest round of "Get the facts" marketing, but this time they might have gone too far. Microsoft gives Firefox and Chrome two thumbs down on the security front and adds "Internet Explorer 8 takes the cake with better phishing and malware protection, as well as protection from emerging threats." In fact if Microsoft's browser comparison page is to be believed both Firefox and Chrome lack Security, Privacy, Ease of Use, Development Tools, Reliability, Compatibility, and Manageability."


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