×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Ask Slashdot: What Can I Really Do With a Smart Watch?

QuasiSteve Re:Why I got a Pebble (219 comments)

Or you can install a custom lock screen on Android and get the same thing.
Or use an iPhone, which I think shows notifications on the lock screen as well?

This does not prevent the "pulling out your phone" part - especially if it doesn't automatically turn its screen on, requiring further steps - and then the unmentioned "putting your phone back" part.
Unless that phone is already on the desk in front of you, of course.

2 days ago
top

Waze Causing Anger Among LA Residents

QuasiSteve Shave minutes off of commute? Try MapFactor! (594 comments)

As long as you accept that a free right turn, followed by a u-turn, followed by another free right turn, is faster than waiting for the light at the intersection.

on-topic: seems to me that the problem is more with the highway not being able to handle the volume of traffic. Sure, you can make it less attractive for people to use the parallel road but that does little more than shift the problem elsewhere. In addition, these measures often hinder the residents themselves and emergency services as well, and depending on the choice of measure, can even increase problems. When they put speed bumps at the intersections in our area, we started to see an increase in structural damages in houses, as buses and trucks late in the evening had no trouble getting over those at normal speed, and just transferred energy from the bump, into the ground, and out to the houses.

5 days ago
top

Apple DRM Lawsuit Loses Last Plaintiff, but Judge Rules Against Dismissal

QuasiSteve Re:Only in America... (71 comments)

What I can't figure out is why they can even file a Personal Damages suit EIGHT years after the original purchase

The plaintiffs first filed suit January 3, 2005

- various sources

I guess the question would be why on Earth it took this long to get to this stage :)

years of motions, complaints, and the recusal of a judge

- The Verge

Oh. Of course.

about two weeks ago
top

Apple DRM Lawsuit Loses Last Plaintiff, but Judge Rules Against Dismissal

QuasiSteve Re:Only in America... (71 comments)

"Plaintiffs didn't suffer damages" is a laughable reason?

Yes. No. Sort of.

It is a fact that this has *potentially* affected N million people, and it is assumed that of those N million people, some M were truly affected. The suit was brought as a class action suit, essentially representing all those people.
But a suit needs plaintiffs, and in this case the plaintiffs were not among those affected. Or rather, one wasn't affected, and the other was kinda-sorta not affected because she didn't actually pay for the devices herself.

Dismissing the case based on just these 2 plaintiffs is 'laughable' in that it ignores the other N people, the other M people, and if nothing else, the other 1 person who purchased the products for that woman.
Would it not be equally laughable to suggest that in her specific case, that person also has no standing because while they may very well have purchased the device, they gifted it away and thus cannot have been affected?

The judge in this case made the right call - there's already been effort, time and money expended to get the case this far. Dismissing it and saying "bring another suit when you have new plaintiffs" would waste resources, not the least of which being the court's.

The plaintiffs - or rather their counsel - should have done their homework better and ensured that the plaintiffs had standing, though.. and I think the judge made that very clear in their highly public statements.

about two weeks ago
top

Wikipedia's "Complicated" Relationship With Net Neutrality

QuasiSteve Re:Are they the same? (134 comments)

Imagine if your ISP had a cap (hard cap, soft cap, whatever), and Amazon paid your ISP so that all their Amazon Prime streaming offerings would not count toward that cap - but Netflix won't or can't pay to do the same.

Would you stick with Netflix knowing that you can only watch N shows before hitting your cap, or would you switch to Amazon and watch as many shows as you like?
( For sake of argument, assume they offer the same content. )

about three weeks ago
top

Australia Elaborates On a New Drift Model To Find MH370

QuasiSteve Re:Obsession (154 comments)

I understand you're not the same person who complained about a story no longer being in the news, but I guess that just goes to show that for some people there can never be enough coverage, and for others there can never be too little.

If you want to talk media obsession, though... at least MH370 was still this year and was a whole plane lost under weird circumstances - and not a child abducted while her well-off parents were out partying 7 years ago that still has stories running every other week, or a president that was shot 51 years ago that has complete TV specials made practically every year.

about three weeks ago
top

Health Advisor: Ebola Still Spreading, Worst Outbreak We've Ever Seen

QuasiSteve Re:But the press has stopped talking about it... (244 comments)

How has 'the press' stopped talking about it, if you're reading about a related story in /.?

Even if by 'press' you're thinking CNN, Fox News, WSJ, NY Times: They all have recent articles about Ebola.
CNN: Sierra Leone: Ebola burial team dumps bodies in pay protest
Fox News: US quarantine moves hurting Ebola response in Africa, experts say
WSJ: Ebola Vaccine Appears Safe in Early Test
NY Times: Sierra Leone to Eclipse Liberia in Ebola Cases

All from within the last few hours.

Maybe some others?
Reuters: Ebola vaccine from Glaxo passes early test
AP: AT 1 MONTH, US EBOLA MONITORS FINDING NO CASES
BBC: Tracing the Ebola outbreak
RT: Reported Ebola cases near 16,000 â" WHO
Al Jazeera: Ebola workers in Sierra Leone dump bodies

Just because a new story has been found to shove into your face every 5 minutes on TV and main headlines on the internet (hello Ferguson / snow), doesn't mean that 'the press has stopped talking about it'. It just means you'll have to pay better attention or actually go look for it, rather than sit on your ass passively taking it in as if you were watching Keeping up with the Kardashians.

about three weeks ago
top

Windows Kernel Version Bumped To 10.0

QuasiSteve Re:Guffaw! So much overhaul it's FOUR better! (171 comments)

Of course there's places where you can find it. There's even places where you can find it in proximity to the marketing name. Neither of those are necessarily marketing material, though.
Unless you know something more about application's 'About' screens suitability for marketing and communications, of course :)

about a month ago
top

DreamWorks Reveals Glimpse of "Super Cinema" Format For VR Films

QuasiSteve Re:Pre-rendered panoramic 3D? (39 comments)

You leave yourself an out with the "to do correctly" part, as any solution proposed could be deemed to not be 'done correctly'.

If they pre-render/capture a scene at, say, 2 inch intervals in a 3D grid along where the user is allowed to go (if the user is only allowed to turn/move their head, rather than walk around, this shouldn't be a whole lot of points to render/capture from), and use interpolation between those points to construct a new view (which could entirely be done in the 2D projection space in real time), the effect should be very convincing both as a regular display and in stereoscopic (may require additional correlation so both eyes get the same interpolation).

But because it's interpolate, you may have vantage points that don't match up with what you would see if you actually rendered/captured from that vantage point, so, not 'done correctly'. Still, it's about as good as it gets, given the constraints.

about a month ago
top

Windows Kernel Version Bumped To 10.0

QuasiSteve Re:Guffaw! So much overhaul it's FOUR better! (171 comments)

I don't know if it's marketing so much as it is dev support.

Most end-users certainly wouldn't see the kernel version. Computer properties doesn't report the internal version, and certainly nowhere on regular branding would it make mention of it. What marketing material has Microsoft put out in the past that made mention of the kernel version (where that version wasn't equal to the product name anyway - e.g. 3.11)

Some developers, on the other hand, would probably be quite annoyed if there's a version 7 kernel which doesn't match with Windows 7, a version 8 kernel which has nothing to do with Windows 8, and a version 9 kernel which seems awfully close to Windows 95/98.

From that point of view, Microsoft should really have started this with Windows 7 - but Windows 10 is the next major opportunity to so after having to skip Windows 9 anyway.

But for marketing - well they can call it whatever they want regardless of (kernel) version number anyway. Me / XP / Vista.

about a month ago
top

Washington Dancers Sue To Prevent Identity Disclosure

QuasiSteve Re:In the uk (461 comments)

Technically this isn't FOIA, but the Public Records Act of Washington (state).

That said... just look at the shit-ton of exemptions in there already from industries with strong lobbying groups:
http://app.leg.wa.gov/rcw/defa...

Anybody who defends this guy - his intentions are clearly not that as honorable as simply wishing to pray for these strippers - on grounds of "what are they going to block next?" should have a look at that list, and realize that their concerns materialized before they ever realized they had them.

about a month and a half ago
top

PC Cooling Specialist Zalman Goes Bankrupt Due To Fraud

QuasiSteve Re:Uncool (208 comments)

Presumably sold off to multiple interested parties by a curator if it gets to that stage.

All of their coolers - and we're not just talking fans here, but their vast library of heatsink and heatpipe designs (both functional and aesthetic targets), cooling pads, etc. will be an easy target for either a competitor, or for a company to keep Zalman going and focus only on those. It's what Zalman's known for - to the point of their own website suggesting for the VGA products that "Zalman cooler is equipped with VGA card", rather than the other way around ;) - so that would make some sense.

The peripherals.. well, most of them can probably die off. Not too many people seem to care about Zalman mice, keyboards, USB sticks, headsets, etc. - they're either a dime a dozen or too fancy for their own worth, and only a few get to be big brand names in that arena.

There's some niche products like their virtual device storage options that would make a good complementary offering in WD's lineup.

Given their financial numberfiddling, I can't help but imagine that some divisions were used to prop up others to help make things look good - so selling it all together seems, to me, unlikely; except for purposes of selling it on again
(yes, the IP vultures, whose day job is to make up ways in which popular products violate their IP in the hopes of landing settlements because that's cheaper than bothering with the court case even if you think they're on extremely shaky ground)

about a month and a half ago
top

Why CurrentC Will Beat Out Apple Pay

QuasiSteve Re:Total nonsense (631 comments)

Far too few people are going to be interested in it.

Until, of course, paying with CurrentC gets you a 2% discount, 10% on select items during an introductory offer*.

( * with regular prices actually gradually going up )

about 2 months ago
top

FTDI Removes Driver From Windows Update That Bricked Cloned Chips

QuasiSteve Re:Computer Missues Act 1990 (572 comments)

Yes, I think I covered that in my last run-on parasentencegraph :)

I highly doubt there would be any court case as a result of this (especially since it's now pulled, anybody who cares enough to un'brick' their device can follow steps readily provided, etc.) Which is a bit of a shame, as I think it would make for interesting arguments from both sides.

about 2 months ago
top

FTDI Removes Driver From Windows Update That Bricked Cloned Chips

QuasiSteve Re:Alternatives? Same problem.. (572 comments)

In terms of positive PR, they could have gone with:

1) Put up a warning that the device is counterfeit and will only work for another N times (after which, simply refuse to work with it - don't modify it outright, though given the technique a temporary modification may be required).
2) Ask users to take a picture and name the vendor and product in a tweet using hashtag #fakechip (or whatever marketing comes up with)
3) Every first tweet of the vendor/product combination is rewarded with a free genuine FTDI replacement chip.
4) Sit back, collect the list of naughty companies (pass on to legal if bored), watch the build of goodwill, the discussion of fake vs genuine swell.

Instead, the discussion is now much less about counterfeit vs genuine chips, but about FTDI doing something that apparently is hugely polarizing (some people supporting the practice, most others wondering wtf FTDI was thinking) to electronics enthusiasts/integrators, security experts, and even legal eagles who aren't sure whether FTDI did something clearly illegal any more than whether they did something that was clearly legal, and a secondary discussion on what to replace FTDI parts with. All rather more negative bits of PR for FTDI, even if further out into the future I think this will have been seen as a good move.

about 2 months ago
top

FTDI Removes Driver From Windows Update That Bricked Cloned Chips

QuasiSteve Re:Computer Missues Act 1990 (572 comments)

Except they're only doing this to their USB VID/PID - which IS THEIRS.

That may be a matter of interpretation.

They are changing a number which is theirs (not sure if they'd have IP law on their side, or only the USB association's 'hear, hear!').

However, this change occurs by actually modifying EPROM states, said EPROM most not being theirs.

Of course then there's the bit about them not knowing that because it identifies itself as being theirs, thus it being the counterfeiters' fault for not counterfeiting it well enough to match the genuine article when sent this particular set of instructions, and the counter-issue that there doesn't appear to be any good reason to use those instructions except for targeting counterfeits, but that plain warnings don't seem to stem the tide of counterfeits, and whether counterfeits really are as big of an issue in the markets where they get most actively used anyway, and you've got a bit of a clusterfornication.

about 2 months ago
top

FTDI Removes Driver From Windows Update That Bricked Cloned Chips

QuasiSteve Re:Counterfeiters not competitors (572 comments)

So we shouldn't just blame the users for buying products with counterfeit chips - which they may very well not even have known about - but we should also blame them for not digging up the automatic driver update mechanism that they may very well not even have known about?

Is there anything else we could blame on the user - the party most immediately affected - in this situation?

about 2 months ago
top

FTDI Removes Driver From Windows Update That Bricked Cloned Chips

QuasiSteve Re:Counterfeiters not competitors (572 comments)

I'm quite certain that most people wouldn't even know that they invited anybody into their house - as it is, they're technically already in the house (FTDI's drivers come with Windows). The invitation would be with the update - but as the occupant, I'm even unaware of this invitation. In this analogy, I trust my landlord, and my landlord trusts the maintenance people. The maintenance people broke that trust, no matter how well-intentioned their actions.

As far as the winding gear bit - FTDI merely cause a re-write of the USB PID to 0000. Nothing that can't be restored, just as a winding gear can be put back into place. It's not so much destruction as it is disabling.

about 2 months ago
top

FTDI Removes Driver From Windows Update That Bricked Cloned Chips

QuasiSteve Re:Counterfeiters not competitors (572 comments)

When Rolex sneaks into your house because somewhere in your apartment lease you agreed that trusted maintenance people could do so to make sure that everything is on the up and up, finds your Rolex to be a fake, and takes a winding gear out... would you consider that to also be functionally no different?

Because that's more akin to what has happened.

Windows users allow Windows (by default) to let WHQL drivers to be updated silently. FTDI made use of this mechanism to update their driver. Their driver, when called upon to communicate with the device, then sends it some data which either does nothing (genuine) or reversibly disables it (if counterfeit).

about 2 months ago
top

Technology Heats Up the Adultery Arms Race

QuasiSteve Related: 'Stalking app' maker arrested (304 comments)

This is two weeks ago, but I don't think it popped up on Slashdot;
Feds charge tech CEO with making app for stalkers, domestic abusers

Although people are usually quick to defend the tool (and its makers) and suggest authorities go after its users instead, similar stories from the past seem to suggest that not very many would be jumping to his defense:
Man Creates "Creepy" Stalking App
World's Creepiest iPhone App Pulled After Outcry

about 2 months ago

Submissions

Journals

QuasiSteve has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?