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Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

Optic7 Re:Only for the first year (570 comments)

Perhaps you're right. It's possible that they are just offering a time-limited free version upgrade straight up, and that all other licensing policies are the same. That's an interesting theory for the reason too.

about a week ago
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Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

Optic7 Re:Only for the first year (570 comments)

I would call their OEM licenses up to Windows 7 relatively cheap, but not super-cheap. I meant super-cheap as in $50 or under, how Apple had been pricing OS X upgrades before they went free in the most recent versions.

"It's a trap" may actually have been premature. Let's see the details first. Maybe they are just going the same route as Apple did, but the thing is they don't have the big hardware profits that Apple does, so I don't know what their plan is.

about a week ago
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Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

Optic7 Re:Only for the first year (570 comments)

Is it integrated into the BIOS, or are they doing the traditional thing of recording the serial numbers of your CPU, hard drives, etc, and flagging any changes?

about a week ago
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Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

Optic7 Re:Only for the first year (570 comments)

Actually retail licenses are supposed to be transferable as you upgrade computers, etc. OEM licenses, on the other hand like you described, are tied to the specific hardware.

about a week ago
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Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

Optic7 Re:Only for the first year (570 comments)

Reading that blog in more detail, I think I understand what they are doing. "Supported lifetime of the device" *probably* means that the license will be tied to the hardware and will not be transferable. Perhaps they will generally make licenses super-cheap, but not transferable? Or perhaps they will go subscription-only on new devices.

"IT'S A TRAP!" may be appropriate here. We will find out for sure soon enough.

about a week ago
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Windows 10: Can Microsoft Get It Right This Time?

Optic7 Re:There's nothing wrong now... (489 comments)

XP had its issues, like every OS, but compared to having to run the OS on top of DOS like Windows was previously doing it was a huge improvement.

Windows 2000 was not based on Windows 9x, so did not run on top of DOS. It was instead an upgrade to Windows NT 4, with some added integration to allow Windows 9x programs to run, so it was the first OS that unified both the enterprise branch (NT) and consumer branch (9x) of Windows. So Windows XP was not new in that regard. Think of XP as Windows 2002, or Windows 2000 with a candy-like interface on top and a few other improvements. Here's an NT history for reference, showing the version progression from NT 3.1 up to Windows 10: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W...

The Windows 8 improvements over 7 are worth it. Speed and security to name a couple. Especially when you consider that if you really can't handle the interface you can easily download free utilities to make it look like Windows 7.

The fact is that even though people like to gripe and moan, every version of Windows on the NT branch as outlined in the Wikipedia article above has been an improvement over the previous version.

about two weeks ago
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Obama Proposes 2 Years of Free Community College

Optic7 Re:Don't we already provide K-12 for "free"? (703 comments)

I would say not. In most places that I know of in the US, K-12 education is funded to a large extent by property taxes, which means that rich districts have a lot more resources than poor districts.

I did a quick search and found this very brief article about it: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/wherew...

The actual proportions and differences very likely vary greatly depending on state and locality.

about three weeks ago
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Is Kitkat Killing Lollipop Uptake?

Optic7 Re:Lollipop = Windows Vista (437 comments)

Unfortunately, even though I have not upgraded my Nexus 4 to Lollipop, I still received the new Calendar (and all other Google Apps) as part of the regular Play store app updates. I don't like the new calendar either. Still getting used to some of the changes, and still haven't figured out how to do some things. For instance, how to set the default calendar for new appointments - I ended up putting some personal appointments on my work calendar and can't move them. Now I have to manually pick my personal calendar (which is the Google account, so you would think it would be the default) each time I create an appointment.

Another thing I don't like about the new app design guidelines is that they made the menu buttons on the top bar way too small. You almost have to use your pinky to get them, even though there's plenty of room for bigger buttons.

about three weeks ago
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Tumblr Co-Founder: Apple's Software Is In a Nosedive

Optic7 Re:Not sure what to think (598 comments)

Great, thanks again for your responses.

about three weeks ago
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Tumblr Co-Founder: Apple's Software Is In a Nosedive

Optic7 Re:Not sure what to think (598 comments)

Yeah, thanks for sharing, for sure. How recently did you speak to them? I will share this with others here too. I wish that this was more publicized.

about three weeks ago
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Tumblr Co-Founder: Apple's Software Is In a Nosedive

Optic7 Re:Not sure what to think (598 comments)

Wow, that's some crazy stuff from them. Thanks for the response!

about three weeks ago
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Tumblr Co-Founder: Apple's Software Is In a Nosedive

Optic7 Re:Not sure what to think (598 comments)

Hi there, I'm a fellow IT guy and have a question about something you said:

Apple decides they're going to standardize on SMB because it's faster and more widely used, which sounds like good news, right? Yeah, except that it's over a year later, and Apple's file sharing is still buggy. Apple's advice is to not use OSX with file servers.

Do you have any links to Apple's recommendation to not use OSX with file server, especially SMB file servers? We have Mac users who have occasional issues with our Windows file servers, and it would be very handy to be able to reference that article.

Thanks!

about three weeks ago
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Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

Optic7 Re:I question your numbers. (688 comments)

Those are fair points. I just wanted to mention some other car expenses to think about.

about a month ago
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Optic7 Re:Land of the free (580 comments)

Sorry, but it's common. Way more common than it should be. There's a news story about someone in the US going crazy and killing a handful of people with guns just almost every week now. Certainly at least every month. One of these happened very near a place that I frequented (same strip mall) just a few years ago, around the time that I frequented it.

about a month ago
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Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

Optic7 Re:I question your numbers. (688 comments)

Did you include the depreciation on the car, and the insurance you pay on it? Based on the numbers you provided and adding a conservative $10,000 depreciation and an average $50/month for insurance, I got closer to 34 cents / mile. I didn't include things like driver's license fees, car registration fees, traffic and parking fines, parking fees, purchase/rental of garage space, and who knows what else I can't think of right now.

The approximately 60 cents / mile figure likely comes from the IRS business mileage reimbursement rate (56 cents / mile), and the AAA's most recent estimate of costs to own and operate a sedan in the US (59.2 cents / mile).

about a month and a half ago
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Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

Optic7 Re:I question your numbers. (688 comments)

Does your calculation include depreciation in the value of the car due to added mileage? How about major maintenance (such as timing belt, etc) that will be moved sooner with the added mileage?

The IRS itself calculates mileage reimbursement at 50-some cents per mile. I believe that AAA has a similar figure for average car costs. I had a personal finance teacher (a real, hard-core money geek) tell us that the real figure is closer to one dollar per mile, but he didn't give details of how he arrived at that, and he could have been way off.

about a month and a half ago
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Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

Optic7 Mod parent up - it's the most likely explanation! (688 comments)

The most likely explanation to what the grandparent poster posited, and, in fact, to TFA as well.

about a month and a half ago
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Want To Influence the World? Map Reveals the Best Languages To Speak

Optic7 Re:Interesting, but ... (150 comments)

Thank you for challenging a main point of the OP's post that I wanted to challenge and forgot to in my own reply: that "a large percentage of the human race's information is in English."

I feel that that's a major mistake in the OP's analysis, and think that it's really the opposite: a small percentage of the human race's information is in English.

about a month and a half ago
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Want To Influence the World? Map Reveals the Best Languages To Speak

Optic7 Re:Interesting, but ... (150 comments)

If only it were possible for humans to speak more than one language, then they could keep their original language and also communicate in one or more global languages! Alas, it is, sadly, impossible. /sarcasm

Like it or not, language helps maintain a lot more than just "lousy, empty, vapid" culture. It also helps maintain useful culture, history, unique philosophical concepts, unique observations about the world around us, and I am sure countless other important characteristics, discoveries, and contributions of a particular set of people. With something as complex and impactful as language, having only one choice is never good, just like it's not good in software, programming languages, food, or anything for that matter.

Reading your follow-up reply, I would also add that having a variety of languages is infinitely more important than resolving something that could much more easily be resolved with better engineering solutions, like the localization examples you mention.

about a month and a half ago

Submissions

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Ask Slashdot: How to get old commercial software to be open-sourced?

Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "Many gamers have probably dreamed about the idea of an old favorite game or other no longer supported or developed commercial software being converted to an open-source license so that it could be updated to add new features, support new hardware, other operating systems, etc. However, this type of change of license seems exceedingly rare, unless the copyright holder itself decides on its own that it would be beneficial. The only examples I could think of or was able to find in a brief internet search were Blender (3D animation software that had its source code bought from creditors after a crowd-funding campaign) and Warzone 2100 (Game that had its source code released after a successful petition). With those two examples of different strategies in mind, have any of you ever participated in any efforts of this kind, and what did you learn from it that may be useful to someone else attempting the same thing? Even if you have not participated, do you have any suggestions or ideas that may be useful to such an effort?"
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Verizon and Cable Cos Enter Deal That May Freeze C

Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "A series of three articles at GigaOm describes an ominous telecommunications business deal that is taking place which will likely have a large impact on the future of competition in both the wireless and broadband markets in the United States:

"Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks are selling off the spectrum remnants of their stillborn wireless venture, SpectrumCo, to Verizon Wireless for $3.6 billion. The deal would allow Verizon to double-up on its LTE network — in some regions triple up — creating huge overhead for future mobile broadband growth."

For a variety of reasons the government will be less likely to attempt to block this deal, in contrast with how they have handled AT&T's $39 Billion bid to buy T-Mobile, even though the deal, which includes secret agreements among the companies involved, shows signs that it will virtually eliminate any new or real competition for internet access in the US:

"This is the crystalline moment when the division of the marketplace becomes completely clear, even to people who haven't been paying attention. VZ and ATT get wireless; cable gets wires; consumers are stuck. Wireless, like wired high-speed access already wholly dominated by the cable companies, is a natural monopoly service at this point, with incredibly high barriers to entry — so high that even current players, like T-Mo, are having trouble making it. Clearwire [WiMax] has nowhere to go at this point. So we have the worst of all worlds: no competition, and no regulatory oversight.""

Link to Original Source
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Gel Found to Reduce AIDS Risk in Women

Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "A medical trial in South Africa has found that a gel containing an antiretroviral drug has significantly reduced the risk of women contracting HIV up to 54% compared to placebo depending on how closely the women followed the protocol. The best article about it that I have found so far has been at the Washington Post:

"The material came packed in syringe-like applicators. A woman was instructed to inject the gel into her vagina no more than 12 hours before intercourse and again within 12 hours afterward (but with no more than two applications in a 24-hour period). Each woman got a monthly AIDS test, and the researchers collected used and unused applicators to verify the women's reports of whether they were using them.

At the end of 2 1/2 years, there were 98 infections in the 889 women. The HIV incidence, measured as the number of new infections for every 100 "women years" in the study, was 5.6 in the volunteers using the tenofovir gel and 9.1 in those with the placebo gel.

That amounted to a prevention effectiveness of 39 percent. Among women who said they used the gel for at least 80 percent of episodes of intercourse, the effectiveness was 54 percent.""

Link to Original Source
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Major Voter Protection Effort Launched For 2008

Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "With early voting,registration and absentee deadlines looming, Election Protection launched its 2008 general election efforts today. The nation's largest nonpartisan voter protection coalition, representing more than 100 organizations and the full spectrum of American citizens, will undertake the most comprehensive effort ever undertaken to empower voters to make sure their vote counts this November 4.

They will be needing volunteers, so here's a chance for all Slashdotters to participate and help us all have a smoother election this time around. If you would like to know more about the organization, the New York Times recently wrote about them (linked through Google in order to avoid the New York Times login)."

Link to Original Source
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Transitioning From Windows Admin To Linux Admin?

Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "I've been a Windows IT guy for many years, doing my fair bit of systems and network admin, deskside support, etc. I find myself increasingly tired and bored with with the Windows IT world so have been looking for a change. I looked at Cisco and even got my CCNA but find the pure networking stuff kind of dull as well. I've had a long-time interest in Unix and Linux, but never did much about it other than play with it occasionally and install a few different distros, and nothing much beyond that. Now I'm seriously thinking about jumping into Linux admin work with both feet and seeing what happens.

My question is what do you think is the best way to make such a transition? I'm currently studying for the LPI certification, and also plan on doing LFS based on recommendations I've read from fellow Slashdotters. But would anyone hire me as even a junior Linux admin without having any real-world business experience with it? What are some things that would increase my chances of that happening? Is there anything else, any other avenues that I'm not thinking of?

How the heck do you get started in a Linux admin career?"
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Gnucash 2.2.0 released, now stable for windows

Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "I just happened to visit Gnucash's site to download it and noticed that they have just released the new stable version, 2.2.0, today. This also marks the first stable Gnucash release for Windows. It seems that the Windows port is also the main feature of this new release. If you are not familiar with Gnucash, it is an open source alternative to Quicken and Microsoft Money. Visit their website to read more, or head straight for the downloads."
Link to Original Source
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Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  about 8 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "NPR reports that a new study by Harvard and the Center for Science in the Public Interest found that nutrition studies funded by food companies are almost eight times more likely to reach a conclusion beneficial to the food companies than similar, independently funded studies. New Scientist has also done a story on this, if you prefer to read instead of listen to the NPR story."
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Optic7 Optic7 writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Optic7 (688717) writes "Given the interest garnered here by stories about classic adventure games, Slashdot readers are sure to be interested to hear that 1up is reporting that Sierra is about to release compilations of all of their famous and classic adventure games series either this Friday or Monday. The series compilations to be released include: King's Quest, Space Quest, Police Quest, and Leisure Suit Larry.

I hope they don't forget to do this for Quest for Glory as well."

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