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Why Portland Should Have Kept Its Water, Urine and All

MindPrison And yet birds die in it... (330 comments)

...all the time. It's all psychology, it's human urine - therefor it is oh so terrible. Think of all the bird-droppings, huge flocks of birds flying by...doing their thing. They carry far more diseases with them than we dare to even think of, never-mind mention in the news. But human urine? Yuck ;)

2 days ago

Ask Slashdot: Hungry Students, How Common?

MindPrison Re:You don't hear about the failures (389 comments)

Nice, I'm a big fan of Benjamin Franklin. His picture hangs framed in gold, on my wall amongst the others, Einstein, Tesla, Faraday, Edison, Newton, Mandelbrot, Curie, Turing, Farnsworth, Planck, Disney (yes! Walt!), Roentgen, Morse and so many more, but they are the well known ones, the most interesting ones - are those people we never hear about...

3 days ago

Ask Slashdot: Hungry Students, How Common?

MindPrison Re:You don't hear about the failures (389 comments)

I took an education in Animation

Good for you.

Where were we?

No, if I wanted fries I'd have asked for them.

Yeah, I know...I tend to give people fries even though they don't ask for them.
I guess that's why I don't work for McDonalds.

3 days ago

Ask Slashdot: Hungry Students, How Common?

MindPrison Re:You don't hear about the failures (389 comments)

I currently use Blender, I'm also a 3Dstudio max user. Right now, I am a 3D graphics artist in a small town. Between jobs, I work as a teacher, it's a small town, I have my own house here...that's why I don't work in the big cities. It's my own choice.

3 days ago

Ask Slashdot: Hungry Students, How Common?

MindPrison You don't hear about the failures (389 comments)

...because no one wants to tell you about those, of course not - who wants to admit they didn't make it after all of those hardships?

I took an education in Animation, very VERY expensive, cost me a HUGE fortune (which I took up a loan for, and worked in a computer store to pay off), did I end up working for Disney? No. Despite winning TWO FILM AWARDS - I still didn't get a job with Pixar or the likes, why? Did I suck? No - I just didn't have the right connections, and I didn't even understand how important it is to have the right connections, and NOT to piss off the wrong people.

I spent the next 10 years paying of my study debts, I'm finally free. But I don't regret anything, if I didn't do it - I'd spend the rest of my life wondering how things would have turned out if I did it, if I really just took the plunge and went for it. Well - I did...and it didn't turn out as I expect it.

But you know what? Everything you learn in life - you'll eventually get some use out of, I use my former education to work in advertising, using my animation skills in a technical sense, earning my living that way. Nothing is ever 100% black & white.

3 days ago

Google's New Camera App Simulates Shallow Depth of Field

MindPrison Google rules when it comes down to blurriness. (126 comments)

Just take a look at the auto-blurring used in street-view, nothing beats it. My neighbors dogs face was blurred instead of their kid. ;)

4 days ago

Industry-Wide Smartphone "Kill Switch" Closer To Reality

MindPrison As a teacher... (139 comments)

...I'd love a Smartphone kill switch, oh sweet...the revenge!

about a week ago

Reviving a Commodore 64 Computer Using a Raspberry Pi

MindPrison Finally, some decent use for my Raspberry PI (165 comments)

It was collecting dust, c'mon - admit it - yours was too.

I've got plenty of these one-board wonders, Texas Instruments Stellaris Launchpad anyone? Collecting dust? What? I still use my old JR51AC2 - (8051 type) devboard with my gazillion 87c51fc3 mcu's without needing yet another devboard for yet another processor & concept..., but hey...kudos for trying Braben.

Now...if I could only find an original cable for the SX-64 Computer (yes, for you noobs out there, that is a Commodore 64 all-in-one computer from 1984, featuring a small 5.5 inch Color screen, floppy disk and psu all-in-one, luggable) Worlds first color portable AFAIK. Yeah yeah, I can make one, but I'm a geezer...I prefer the original round cable one...got one? PM me!

about a week ago

The Amoeba That Eats Human Intestines, Cell By Cell

MindPrison What's eating you? (71 comments)

Ah, perfect - now I have an answer for that annoying question people sometimes ask me:

What's eating you?

E. histolytica!

about two weeks ago

Used IT Equipment Can Be Worth a Fortune (Video)

MindPrison Re:P4 (79 comments)

See, I run a charity that gets those machines as donations - we have hundreds. So please, tell me so that I can get what we REALLY need.

I've always known that you must be into charity Anonymous Coward, the hundreds if not thousands of hours you've spent on /. And that's how you do it as well, with your hundreds of machines - commenting.

about three weeks ago

Used IT Equipment Can Be Worth a Fortune (Video)

MindPrison I've known this for the last 20 years (79 comments)

And it has saved my butt more than a few times. Basically everything I have is second-hand, and the IT equipment is no exception. And it's worth more than most people think. I've been picking up older but very good computers here and there for peanuts, and re-sold them for thousands.

Same thing with other tech gear, radios are particularly lucrative as they're still useable, and people like to listen to radio all over the world. Of course, you can't sell any old gear...it has to have some kind of collectors value OR usability value, perhaps even both. Those items I've collected are all high-end products from their own time. Rare portables with rare interfaces fetches a small fortune. Some laptops have very good serial port functions, and runs well on older operating systems - this is excellent for programming older micro-controllers and burning special eproms that can't be programmed with modern burners.

There are specialty plotters & cutters & cnc machines that doesn't have new drivers and the businesses can't afford to purchase new CNC machines when their old ones are doing a perfectly good job. That old computer comes in and saves the day.

If you think everything can be solved with a new computer, think again - old serial port based equipment (RS232 etc.) Parallel port etc. have timing issues with newer computers that simply are too fast, and the operating system "simulating ports" is just way too incompatible in "dos mode" etc. Trust me, I've been doing this for YEARS - and no matter HOW good you are as a coder/hardware hacker...you simply can't solve all these issues just like that.

The old "If it's not broken, why fix it?" applies here.

about three weeks ago

Why Movie Streaming Services Are Unsatisfying — and Will Stay That Way

MindPrison Re:Um. WRONG. (323 comments)

Netflix is 100% satisfying. WTF back country bullshit throttled cable internet service are you using?

I don't know why this /. user got modded as a Troll for having his own opinion of a service? Clearly some mods in here are controlled by their personal opinions instead of being objective. Sure...the user may not sound politically correct, but since when did we become so politically correct in here that we can't express ourselves?

Personally I love Netflix, can't beat the price for what I get, here we pay around 9USD for it, and I've used it for a year now. I'd pay 9 bucks for 50-60 episodes of Breaking bad any day, not to mention House of Cards. And it's a great way to discover all those movies that DIDN'T make it as the official Hollywood box-office hits of our times. For example, I've had the great pleasure of discovering cool 80's movies that never really made it because they where overshadowed by other famous movies, but they are actually quite pleasing to watch, and the fact that I can relive my 80's with FRESH new material, is just priceless IMHO.

Sure, I wish there was more content on Netflix, some days feels dry - but then again...nine bucks to avoid the mind numbingly stupid broadcast or cable TV with its endless onslaught advertisement of the worlds worst repetitive TV-ads for a few minutes of entertainment? I'd take Netflix any day.

about a month ago

White House To Propose Ending NSA Phone Records Collection

MindPrison The constitution (208 comments)

I think the Constitution must be respected! As it is now - far too much of it has been hijacked by the current AND previous government laws, we - the people, have certain inalienable rights. The government, the lawmakers serve the people - not the other way around.

about a month ago

Jimmy Wales To 'Holistic Healers': Prove Your Claims the Old-Fashioned Way

MindPrison A grain of salt... (517 comments)

I always take what I find on Wikipedia with a grain of salt.

But mr. Wales attempt to raise the bar is welcome, it's just not very easy to do it. As long as Wikipedia is as open in its nature as it is now, it will always remain something of a rogue place for opinions vs real scientific facts.

Wikipedia has also been accused with moderators treating it like it was their private domain, and the older more established moderators reign superior over the wannabees, so much so - I've given up any attempt to add anything to the site, as it's usually futile, even if peer reviewed and fully documented (no, not talking about oogey boogey science with crystal healing and all that jazz), but down to earth - time proven, document-able peer reviewed facts.

I think the entire Wikipedia needs to be reviewed, cleaned up and get a better moderation system

about a month ago

Ask Slashdot: Moving From Tech Support To Development?

MindPrison Well off is highly overrated (133 comments)

Quoting OP: My situation is as follows: all living expenses except food, luxuries and entertainment is covered by the wage of my girlfriend. That would leave me in a situation where we would be financially alright, but not well off, if I were to earn significantly less than I do now." Endquote.

I'm in a position similar to yours, except I work - for a minimum wage at the moment, but I get by. What is Luxury (or well off) is highly subjective, and for me... I have all the luxuries of this world (well, perhaps except a car, but I don't need one...I do own a house though, so I don't pay rent). The good thing about your (and my) situation is that you have the LUXURY OF CHOICE. Many people don't even have that, I bet you're better off than 94% of the planets population - I know I am, despite not being able to afford a lot of expensive new stuff.

The luxury of choice, is to be able to say no to a job if you don't like it. I am in a minimum wage job because I happen to like this particular job, and it's hourly based so I can just walk away if I need or want to do something else, that's high living in my world. I've seen people struggle with collecting garbage 20 hours-a-day for a living, just to feed their family.

about a month ago

MtGox Finds 200,000 Bitcoins In Old Wallet

MindPrison It's even more amazing... (227 comments)

...that news like that keeps surfacing every time someone "stumble" over their lost & found bitcoin-collection. Remember the Norwegian guy who forgot that he bought some bitcoins many years ago, and all of a sudden was a millionaire (just to see his bitcoin value drop to HALF the value the next month or so?)

Bitcoin is a perfect example of how easy it is to create something out of virtually nothing. It's essentially bits & bytes with a digitally encrypted keylock, it's nothing physical, most governments won't even recognize it as a currency, at best - it's a shady way of transferring money anonymously.

about a month ago

How Data Storage Has Grown In the Past 60 Years

MindPrison Time Machine (100 comments)

I sometimes wish I had Stevie Griffins time-machine and to go back in time visiting that local computer store on the corner, just to wave my 32gb "stamp" in their faces. You can keep your amazing 5mb ST-drive. Of course, the point is MOOT since I probably wouldn't get the interface to work with their old computers anyway, not to mention the "large disk" compatibility.

about a month ago

Court Denies NSA Request To Hold Phone Records Beyond 5 Years

MindPrison Re:What the court says doesn't matter (46 comments)

What these fools don't realize is that they're not the ones who get to decide if they're doing anything wrong...

Indeed, that's the sad AND scary part. We're becoming so complacent in our "safe" environment, and so afraid to upset anyone that we'll gladly bite the stick, and go back to our little holes (which will soon enough become smaller and smaller). Whenever I'm hired in as a guest speaker at the schools, I try to schedule in a heart-to-heart talk with the kids and youths about this, and try not to become too wacky for them. Kids are quite intelligent, so most of them pick up the idea once it's fully understood.

And you know...the problem isn't the kids, it's what we teach them, or...don't teach them.

about a month and a half ago

Study: Elephants Have Learned To Tell Certain Languages Apart

MindPrison Pink elephants (62 comments)

I knew it, I wasn't crazy!

Those pink Elephants have been talking to me for YEARS. All it takes is a few beers, then some more...and there they are, floppy ear pink bastards!

about a month and a half ago



How do you plan for your ultimate geek retirement?

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  about a year and a half ago

MindPrison (864299) writes "Let's face it. We're not getting any younger, and I was thinking here the other day, I've been working forever with computers — and although I make a pretty decent living, I'm a wage slave like most of you. The pension doesn't cut it as I'm a bit of an international citizen that moves between the different countries, and investments seem unsafe these days. Banks doesn't pay much interest, so what is a Geek to do? Invest in gold? Hide my money under the mattress? Buy land?

So I ask you, the Slashdot audience, what do you do to ensure a rock solid Geek retirement?"

How to get back at the noisy nextdoor neighbor

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  more than 4 years ago

MindPrison (864299) writes "After a long time with that annoying downstairs neighbor playing too loud music, I've been contemplating HOW to deal with it, being a teenager AND a female — you know the drill — asking nicely is NOT an option, teenagers usually get angry because you should NOT tell them what to do etc...so I came up with a quite devious way to solve the issue, and the trick is fighting fire with fire, for once :)

Here's how I did it:

I made a small low-frequency microphone amplifier, hot glued an electret microphone to the floor, and made sure there were no leaks around the microphone (to avoid audio-feedback). I connected this to an active subwoofer (this is a subwoofer that has an power amplifier built in, typically the thing you have in your average surround amplifier, and placed the subwoofer in the room next door to the mike (to avoid feedback!). Now — it's very important to disconnect any surround speakers as you ONLY want the BASS to distribute into the structure of the building itself, this makes it IMPOSSIBLE to locate the sound from YOUR flat, and the penetrating middle-tones that comes from your noisy neighbors stereo — will reveal that it is YOUR NEIGHBOR that plays the loud music.

It worked flawlessly, the entire building shook with the sound of the neighbors stereo, and the teenager had to turn down the sound several times due to multiple complaints from the ENTIRE neighborhood.

Revenge is SOO sweet ;)"



Work and life - reaching Equilibrioception

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  more than 2 years ago

So, it happened.

Did you read the previous journal entry? Why...oh my ego, of course you didn't. It's just my ramblings, and it shall probably always remain that way, nevertheless, here you go. What happened? Did I finally manage to reach my goal of not working for the rest of my life? Being free? Not indebted by society?

Well, I sort of did, but a goal can always be expanded, there's no prize worth fighting over if it isn't worthwhile, and ideal worth fighting for would be ever lasting happiness, how YOU define your happiness - I'll leave up to you. I however...define my happiness on how much I can enjoy while being alive as we know it, this doesn't have to include cruise-ships, endless travels across the world, but simply enjoying life as we know it, as I know it.

Now, 4 years later than when I wrote that last journal...or was it 3 years? Time here...doesn't really matter, because I did in fact reach my core essence of my previous goal, peace and tranquility without the control of others, no one that I know of now control my life, I moved to a different country, I had the one success after the other, and now I'm completely independent, own my own house, land, and all debts have been paid down and the only thing that can happen now are two WIN WIN situations:

I will get unemployed, but still own my land, and have no dept, I have enough to buy food and pay for heating in my own giant 300m2 place, WIN = I have plenty of time for my private science research, and are dependent on no one, no welfare, no insurance, just myself and mother nature.

I will get continuous employment (yes, as of this writing, I am still employed, but still a bit edgy as a person...remember...I am who I am, no man, no animal, no beast controls me, I am a slave to no one), and I do so on my very own will, you see...I am an expert on what I do, and I like it, so I earn money on it, working for someone else...but the condition and rules are different from when I was poor.

When I was poor, I had no home, just a lot of debt, and no freedom. If I choose freedom (aka no employment) back then, I'd have no real freedom as I'd just be a bum, or pay the bills with forced employment (social welfare = forced cheap labor), and that's no real option to me..hence why I moved abroad...escaped...in the first place, no human, no beast can control me.

I realized I got to fight for it, just like millions before me, so I finally got a chance, I got a home, fully paid, no debt, and started to work away all the debt I had from education and all that, still...not liking my employers...(I never truly have, any employer), managed to hold out, and survive enough here in my new country to survive and still keep my new house (it's old..but new to me) without taking up loans. Now I'm steadily working up my account, earning and working hard...but moving with light speed towards freedom.

And the best part? I'm well and truly free. Never before could I just quit my job if I didn't like it without risking it all, now I can. Now That's job satisfaction!

Yes ladies and gents, I'm finally free.


I don't want to work!

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  about 6 years ago

No, really - I do not want to work.

Basically everyone works, it is the way of our life - that is what our planet is based on and that's what most people aspire to do. I'm 40 years "young" now, I don't see me as old...I look pretty much the same as I've looked the last 20 years (at least I think so) ;) but that's besides the point I'm trying to make here. Heck...I really don't care if you get it or not, follow if you like.

I was sitting here in my home thinking over my life past the 20 years or so of work and unemployment in my life, not to mention the countless times I've googled about people and their job satisfaction or basically they overall satisfaction with life itself, I am really wasting my precious time on this planet. Sure - If everyone got the idea that they shouldn't work - this planet would probably come to an end pretty quickly, or would it? There will always be people like me - the odd ones out, so I think we're going to be fine.

When I go to work, I'm not happy, no no...I really like the line of work I'm in - but I end up disliking the people around me simply because they always seem to have some kind of hidden agenda, especially females, maybe it's just me who's getting old and "outdated" when it comes to the "in-crowd" or it's just bad luck - I really don't know (even though most people would look at this from their own point of view...don't think for a second I'm any different on that subject)...however - I really try to be - really!

The inevitable question on this would probably be something like: Why? I can't really answer that in one go, you'd have to live my life to answer that one, and even I have a hard time answering it. But you know what? I'm pretty tired of having a "hard-time". I want to have a good time....alas...a good life and I am tired of living by everyones "norms" on how-to-be..and how-to-behave. I'm not anarchistic, I prefer well educated company and also prefer people who are capable of thinking for themselves, I am also not shallow enough to only hang out with my peers - but will gladly hang out with societys dimmest of souls if they have a good heart, this however - doesn't always fall into fertile ground with the "ins".

All of this + my life experiences so far has led me to the conclusion that I really should not work. I don't want to become some
kind of loner sadly locked up by himself, barred behind some closed curtains in his technologically insane castle, I really DO want to meet people, feel the pulse as always, but I am sick and tired of being steered into whatever direction certain people feel like
they can do "with me" if allowed to do so by a certain work related situation - and this have happened repeatedly trough out my
life (and according to google & a gazillion work-rant sites) so there must be something wrong somewhere, we must be doing SOMETHING
wrong. Now...If you are thinking this trough - and these things never really hit you as it has hit me or other people then you may not be capable of judging the situation so please overlook it, you can't get it - really...you can't!

But I do realize that I must do something about my current situation, and I most certainly will - because I am really fed up
with people incompetence and "normalcy" to the brinck of madness, so instead of going there - I will "fight" towards enjoying life to its fullest and stop destroying myself on behalf of others.

That is all - move along now....


I have a question for the wanderers of this life...

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  more than 6 years ago ...is it best to be together with someone and just be an actor for the rest of your life...or be yourself and alone for the rest of your natural life...? Though question - I know...but do you know the answer?


The 80's electronics components - today's Lego!

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  more than 6 years ago I just love electronics, even if it's not what I do at work for a living. The eighties brought many inventions into our lives such as the personal PC that actually BECAME PERSONAL in the 80's, yes sure...you got your Altair before the 80s, but it wasnt quite the same.

Did you notice the components inside technology of the 80s? I sure did - so much so in fact that I bought my first Pilips Electronic Engineer kit (EE2003) back then when I was 12 - and got hooked on electronics ever since.

Today most electronic hobbyist exist in a chip-world of programming Fpgas and Pics and have hardly touch an soldering iron ever, not that there is ANYTHING wrong with that at all - hey...I even envy those very capable fpga designers that can do so many things I cant even comprehend - all power to you. The point I am trying to make is that the 80s gave us all some building bricks that lay down the ground rules for it all - and - can still be used to make some amazing discoveries, pretty much like students who use LEGO bricks to come up with new robotics-design and to solve issues that really needs a "hands-on" touch in order to become a reality, in other words - get our hands dirty.

Ive stored up a HUGE (well..at least to me...rather large) collection of 80s electronics components, transistors, resistors, diodes, capacitors, electrolytes, TTL-logic chips, microprocessors, eproms...oh...and I could go on and on.

The point is - this is just like LEGO for grown-ups of all ages, anything I have on my mind I can put into a construction with these easily manageable components. Sure - I could use SMD/SMT components - but that just isnt an option when age is hitting you and your hands are shaking, and besides - even for the younger ones these components are so manageable that tech-schools still prefer to use these components for prototyping before finally sending in the schematic to be printed out as an SMD-PCB.

I do know that many schools also use software emulation to simulate what the analog / digital circuits do and how it all work together, but time and again - this is far from realistic as the nature of components still aren't up to par with the "perfect world" of the software...and ...you don't really get that "hands on" feel of experimenting yourself to knowledge as you would if you fiddled with modules you made on the fly.

Many of us grieve over the fact that the days when the local component store where in every city, even the small cities (thats radio-shack to you Americans reading this) are long gone, and Luckily I live in a city where the city itself still is big enough to carry whole "2" competing electronics stores - woah! - Now thats what I call choice.

Have no fear - Internet is here! And eBay!

Ever since Internet became accessible to everyone and not just schools and libraries, weve got the fantastic opportunity to share the good with each other without any borders at all. Fun stuff! And then there is the eBay phenomena, that have brought life to my Electronics hobby for sure - never before have I and others been so able to endulge in our hobby on such a massive scale before - not to mention that it costs a FRACTION of the price of what we paid back in the days. I used to pay about 60 bucks for a handfull of components on a lucky weekend when I was a child (delivered many a newspaper, mind you!) to get some action NERD style, and once they where all used up - I had to go for "pulls"...thats recycled components to the non-tech readers out there. But today? Theres no need for pulls at all - I have "probably" millions of components that are brand-spanking-new, and its a dream come true for a child of the 80s, its like uncle scrooge bathing in money...whereas Id probably catch led-poisoning from bathing in components, but what the hey...I have fun!

There is NOTHING on earth like building a little transistor radio (ok...maybe building a TUBE/Valve radio), and Im looking forward to every little spare moment I have in life - this is indeed LIVING - when I can get some time off from work to complete some projects, do some weird-science experiments and boldly go anywhere I feel like

So - I don't think were ending the era of the 80s components yet, not by far! The party has barely started.


The way we perceive things - changes as we do.

MindPrison MindPrison writes  |  more than 8 years ago Every single day we have opinions, I know I do.

The fun starts when the opinions change over time and I learn something new or see things in a different light.

As the years go by - I find myself observing more rather than stating my opinion all the time. As a young boy I stated my opinions frequently. Eventually I tired from it and started looking for answers instead. A much more logical approach - don't you think so? :)

Frequently I occupy my spare time trying to answer such universal questions such as why are we here and even more ...why is there an universe and where did it all come from

Speaking of which.... these days I've come to believe that it didn't HAVE to have a start.
After all - we invented the concept of time, now didn't we? :)

The most puzzling of all my experience in life so far is the daunting number of humans (me included!) that are caught in a loop.

And what exactly am I accusing humanity of now? Not accusing - rather implying that we might be caught in our own everyday safety net of things that we did once to many times before. Let me take myself as an example:

I zip my tea. Lean back and surf the same pages on the net that I've gotten used to over some time (Slashdot anyone?) again and again. Almost desperate when not finding any news or seeing anything new I often engage in a frantic "bookmark-raid" just to find something new.

Of course ... that is a bit loopminded because it's only the same story all over again, the same people (usually) and the same issues, nothing new really. But who's to blame for that? (Me - just in case you got confused).

The above example is just ONE of many, you can probably find examples from your own life. Now having said that... looping things in life may not be a bad thing - after all - we need our social network - our habits help us feel comfortable and give us a platform to grow on further.

But my gripe with "loopmindedness" is that hardly anything new comes from this - nothing revolutionary anyway. And it's somewhat annoying to find myself caught in that safety net over and over again - especially as I try to rid myself of it. I want to see new things, I want to hear new stories - I want to discover!

Sometimes my quest for thinking the unthinkable (discovering things we have never ever seen before) is making me nuts.

I think the secret to discovering entirely new things is to rid ourselves of traditional thinking. I mean - most of the people on this planet are so preoccupied with the traditional ways that there's hardly any harm in someone taking a different approach. We might not find anything this way - or we might stumble upon something fantastic this.

In the old days people had a habit of blaming everything they didn't understand on mysterious phenomena or paranormal activities and many other things and if you dared to think otherwise you'd either be hung to burn over a campfire or chased as a evil spirit in lead with these "supernatural beings". That's humanity for you!

Oh well - at least certain things are better today, now at best... I'm a "mad-hobby-scientist-wannabe" that no one would even try to understand even if they tried just to be nice. Heck ... I'm not even sure I understand me sometimes.

Therefor I spend considerable time studying communication. It's not too good to be left alone in the dark to chew on your own theories - I need the company of the other. One mind can be nice - but together we could create a HUGE mind to find out things we never before dreamed of. But the road to entirely new thinking is long and dangerous, kind of fun though... it's filled with adventure and no promises of any kind - so you can't really be disappointed - but you COULD get surprised.

A little rambling from me :)


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