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Comments

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Spirit Stuck In Soft Soil On Mars

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Call a tow truck (160 comments)

No, the glass is simply twice of large as it needs to be.

more than 5 years ago
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Classic Books of Science?

NeilTheStupidHead Re:One Resource (451 comments)

The "slight bulges" (your #4) fails for a similar reason - ships have to climb UP a bulge, which takes energy, so either they're going from higher to lower when they start (so no need for wind or rowers) or they're going from lower to higher (so the return doesn't need wind or rowers), so it fails based on simple obsedrvation - you aren't going "downhill" in either direction.

Actually the ocean does 'bulge' in certain places. From what I recall from oceanography, differences in the height of the ocean (WRT some fixed, imaginary reference) were once among the plausible theories of what drove the ocean currents. Measurements indicated that the difference across the Atlantic ocean was only about three meters, which was proven to be insufficient over such a distance to drive the currents.

more than 5 years ago
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Woman Claims Ubuntu Kept Her From Online Classes

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Expected (1654 comments)

At the tech school I recently graduated from, a course on writing reports had a graded "Microsoft Office requirements" component on every piece of written work, and required electronic submission so the instructor could verify that the desired formatting was being done properly instead of just being fudged.

I did every report and presentation in OpenOffice and saved MS Word and Power Point compatible versions of my files when it came time to submit my work. The instructors never knew the difference and I got the highest mark in the class.

Personally, I've been trying out various Linux distros for the past 10 years. I never really found any to be a suitable replacement for Windows on any of my computers until I got my hands on Hardy. My first Hardy install onto a Windows pre-loaded Dell laptop went as smoothly and as quickly as I've ever had an OS install (excepting maybe MSDOS but that hardly counts). The only hardware that didn't work immediately after the install was the wireless card, but ndiswrapper and Wifi-radar quickly solved that.

more than 5 years ago
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Woman Claims Ubuntu Kept Her From Online Classes

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Expected (1654 comments)

she sees it as this obtuse, obnoxious affront to the status quo

So how did Apple increase its market share so much?

more than 5 years ago
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New Google Favicon Deja Vu All Over Again?

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Really, timothy? (227 comments)

Actually, my two middle names are Obsessive Compulsive.

more than 5 years ago
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Companies Using MS Word "Out of Habit," Says Forrester

NeilTheStupidHead The MS Office Habit (367 comments)

I think that if anything will break users from their MS Office habits, the ribbon UI will. I found it very non-intuitive for a long time (10+ years) Office user. Frustrated with trying to get a hnadle on the UI, I finally switched over to OpenOffice and while it's *not quite* as feature rich as my old pre-ribbon MS Office, it's got a sufficiently similar UI that adapting took virtually no time at all.

more than 5 years ago
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Storm Worm Botnet "Cracked Wide Open"

NeilTheStupidHead Re:so what? (301 comments)

However it seems in practice the elimination process would fall foul of the law.

1. Open source the solution, claim 'for academic purposes only'.
2. Let someone else solve the problem for you.
3. ????
4. No profit, but you made the world a better place.

more than 5 years ago
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What Will Spam Be Like In 20 Years?

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Mmm....Spam Sandwich (284 comments)

The problem tends not to be Spam (tm) but the generic, in-store brands of canned meat (or other food products) that still get called by the brand name. Similar to how everyone calls every brand of adhesive bandages 'Band-Aids', despite widely varying quality.

more than 5 years ago
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What Will Spam Be Like In 20 Years?

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Spam will be gone, but advertising is forever (284 comments)

e-mail would be unusable for people whose computers are part of botnets because everyone would block it as spam (which is not really an acceptable solution)

I respectfully disagree.

If users cannot learn to police and maintain their own computers, they should have their network resources restricted. When one of my flatmates botnetted his Windows PC, I got a message from our ISP stating that a computer on my network was a zombie and our service would be temporarily disconnected if the bot was not stopped from spewing trash. I filtered-out his MAC addy on the router until he was able to fix his machine (with my help). By forcing and helping users to learn more about their PCs, much of the current spam traffic could likely be reduced, since most of it comes from botnets.

I learned about computer security and maintenance the hard way, as I imagine many /.ers did and it has been a couple years at least, since a computer I owned or used succumbed to viruses, malware, trojans, etc.

more than 5 years ago
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Can the Auto Industry Retool Itself To Build Rails?

NeilTheStupidHead Re:SUVs (897 comments)

Further some of us simply can't fit into the common compact car, that is certainly poor engineering because I'm only a hair over 6' tall, but highlights that one size doesn't fit all.

There are many compacts that aren't built for tall people, but I'm 6'5" and comfortably drive a Chevy Aveo. There are affordable, fuel-effecient vehicles out there for uncommonly large people.

more than 5 years ago
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Windows Drops Below 90% Market Share

NeilTheStupidHead It was about a month ago... (595 comments)

that I made a permanent switch from XP to Linux. You're welcome. :P

more than 5 years ago
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On Black Friday I...

NeilTheStupidHead Re:WHAT THE FUCK?! (517 comments)

And we always snicker when we have to calculate conductance.

more than 5 years ago
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PETA Using Games To Spread Its Message

NeilTheStupidHead Re:As they say... (477 comments)

meat has the word eat built right in

It also has the word "m" as in "Mmmmm, eat."

it is a slippery slope for the PETA and their Protista friends but it will soon after be demanded to extend to all life and finally minerals. I for one welcome our pure energy consuming overlords.

Entropy is just another way to say "I eat energy, nom nom nom."

more than 5 years ago
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PETA Using Games To Spread Its Message

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Should I be bothered? (477 comments)

A burger made from a mix of kobe beef and veal, topped with foie gras... ooh, and a side of seal flipper pie. MMMM If you've never eaten properly prepared seal flipper, it's the most tender, flavourful meat I've ever eaten; poorly prepared, it's one of the worst.

more than 5 years ago
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History of the LED — the Movie

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Baby Blues. (106 comments)

Blue LEDs have been around since the 70s but not common until the 90s. A couple Japanese researchers in the 80s developed a new method for growing GaN crystals which made blue LEDs brighter and less expensive.

more than 5 years ago
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Astronaut Loses Tools While Performing an EVA

NeilTheStupidHead Re:I was just wondering (445 comments)

Good point, and given the large difference in mass, even a small delta v could create a large enough difference in period. Still, if you were *really* determined to get your bag back...

more than 5 years ago
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How many browser tabs do you have open right now?

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Someone should fix the poll (521 comments)

Yeah, but does it support imaginary tabs?

As long as it supports writing them in exponential form for MATLAB compatibility.

more than 5 years ago
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Astronaut Loses Tools While Performing an EVA

NeilTheStupidHead Re:I was just wondering (445 comments)

Unless the astronaut imparted enough force into the object to either give it escape velocity or cause it to reenter the atmosphere, shouldn't she (in theory) just be able to wait the 90 or so minutes till the next orbit and grab it when the two orbits intersect?

There's always the chance the object will interact with another NEO and not come back, but if no other force acts on it, it should just intersect orbits on the next revolution since it seems like very little force was imparted to the object to change it's trajectory. At least, that's my admittedly limited understanding of orbital mechanics: if two objects in basically identical orbits exchange momentum, then their new orbits will intersect at the same place the original exchange took place.

more than 5 years ago
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AT&T Begins a Trial To Cap, Meter Internet Usage

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Cappings effect on net neutrality... (421 comments)

I concur, I'd happily pay $1 per GB on a flat 'per usage' plan, with maybe, a $5 or $10 minimum charge. While there are some months when I do some heavy downloading, most months, I'm lucky to use 2-3 GB just doing my normal surfing and gaming. The last big download I grabbed was ~50 GB and included over 75 hours of episodic television. Similarly, the mobile phone plan I'm on is entirely metered, with a small connection and maintenance surcharge. When I make very few calls in a month, I pay almost nothing, when I use my phone heavily, I pay accordingly.

The issue I think most people have is the poorly worded or misleading ads or ToS that many service providers use (and perhaps, unreasonable prices). My current provider's contract was very clearly written, and the sales lady that I dealt with very explicitly and clearly stated what the caps were and the surcharges for exceeding them. While I'd prefer not to be capped, both providers in my area have metered service, so I went with the service that had the fairer (IMO) contract.

more than 5 years ago
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Slashdot's Disagree Mail

NeilTheStupidHead Re:Yawn (251 comments)

What about an integra?


...cause I've always wanted a kitty.

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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Home Security

NeilTheStupidHead NeilTheStupidHead writes  |  more than 5 years ago

NeilTheStupidHead (963719) writes "As a geek about to buy my first home, security is a major concern. What have other /.ers done to improve their homes' security? Is it better/easier/more fun to have a system professionally installed or to build one yourself? Ideally, I'd like to have a camera or two set to detect motion and upload pictures to off-site storage in case of break-ins, simultaneously sending an email or photos to my mobile to alert me. Has anyone done something like this? How difficult was it and what kind of hardware did you use? Like most geeks, I've got a pile of slightly dated hardware that I would be happy to put to good use protecting my family and my home."
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NeilTheStupidHead NeilTheStupidHead writes  |  more than 7 years ago

NeilTheStupidHead (963719) writes "I've been asked to organize a distributed computing 'team' on a small (25-30 computers) network with PCs, Macs and Linux machines. I'm passingly familiar with SETI@Home and the BOINC client. What are the various distributed computing projects out there and how easy are they to implement/maintain/monitor? Preferably, I would like a project that has something do to with electrical engineering (specifically with circuit testing or design if possible). I've been instructed to look for the following 'features':
  • Graphical display of progress (i.e. screensaver) — This one is easy, most of the DC projects I've looked at have some kind of screen saver included
  • Individial and team status reports — a summary of work units/CPU time available either by email or on a website
  • Cross-platform support — again, an easy requirement, I hope. Most of the projects I've already looked at are available on the 'big three' (PC, Mac, Linux)
  • A number of users have requested that their spare cycles be dedicated to something that is both non-profit and 'practical' (i.e. no SETI or Climate Prediction)
Right now, the project that seems to fit the greatest number of my requirements is Folding@Home, but I would like to find as many alternatives as possible and choose the most appropriate."

Journals

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Asus Eee Thoughts

NeilTheStupidHead NeilTheStupidHead writes  |  more than 6 years ago

I just got my brand new Eee home (purchased from The Source for $349) and decided to try breaking in my journal and the Eee together. First impressions are that it lives up to the claims of being small and lightweight. At less than 1kg, and with a footprint only slightly bigger than my hand, it's tiny enough to border on dangerously cute and trendy.Wireless setup was a breeze once I read the startup tips accessible from the smiley icon in the system tray.

It's been sitting on my lap now for a handful of minutes now and it barely generates enough heat to be noticed through my jeans. The screen, though small, is easy to read; the default fonts are crisp and clear. The small key board is not that difficult to adapt to for anyone used to typing on a 14" or 15" laptop. I notice that I am tying with only five fingers (Three left and two right) and my left thumb for the space bar. My biggest complaint about the keyboard is the size and placement of the up arrow and right shift key. I tend to use right shift much more than the left and several times while typing, I have brushed the up arrow instead of shift. I'm certain with a bit of practice, I shall adapt quite easily.

Overall, I'd say that I will be most satisfied with my Eee and that it will almost permanently replace my old, small form factor travel mate: a CF-25 Toughbook that has beat around in my backpack for nearly six years. While I don't know if Linux is ready for general distribution on home desktops, it has definitely found a very viable home in devices like the Eee.

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