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Calculus Textbook Author James Stewart Has Died

Que_Ball Re:Too soon? (170 comments)

Actually, now that you mention it

8th edition available March 20, 2015.
Price: $266.99

about a month ago

UK MP Says ISPs Must Take Responsibility For Movie Leaks, Sony Eyes North Korea

Que_Ball Blame the roads for bank heist (216 comments)

So, when a bank is robbed and the thieves use a getaway car then he should obviously be blaming the roads, or the car companies, maybe the gas station for allowing them to be transported to the bank and away from the scene of the crime.

Why is it that the method of transport is suddenly to blame here?  If we always use the car analogy to describe technology concepts then should the roadways be inspecting the contents and destination of all travellers to prevent or detect crimes?

So in this analogy we have criminals who committed the crime and the bank (Sony) where the locks were found to be insufficient and the guards were not watching the right doors.  Why does the blame need to extend beyond those parties?

Of course the governments would probably jump at the chance to inspect all traffic and the contents of all vehicles on the road if they thought they could get away with it.  To protect the people of course, no other reason.

about 2 months ago

The Dutch Village Where Everyone Has Dementia

Que_Ball The Prisoner (231 comments)

Why am I picturing something out the TV series "The Prisoner" from the late 60's


Number 6?

Somehow scary giant floating white bubbles chasing you down?

about 2 months ago

Windows 8 and 8.1 Pass 15% Market Share, Windows XP Drops Below 20% Mark

Que_Ball Re:Wondering about those numbers. (192 comments)

8.1 is not an automatic update.  It requires launching the store, accepting the update and waiting for the lengthy download and install process to finish.  I have seen plenty of Windows 8 PC's that nobody bothered to upgrade.  Not a single person I have talked to still running 8.0 was even aware of the upgrade.  It's not like they made a conscious choice to stick with 8.0, they simply didn't bother to even find out.  Microsoft would have to make a greater effort to force them to upgrade through automatic update and continuous prompts that keep requesting permission to download and upgrade when they boot up to get this to change.

That's pretty much the one and only reason why most of these users have not upgraded on their own.  95% of those windows 8.0 users are simply not clued in to the fact an upgrade should be done.  4% likely had problems getting the upgrade to install or download so just stick with 8.0 rather than troubleshoot the issue.  Lets peg 1% or less are those choosing to stick with 8.0 (good enough for them, corporate standard, too much trouble, not enough bandwidth to download, etc etc)

about 3 months ago

Google To Take On Apple's CarPlay

Que_Ball Answer: Both (126 comments)

Why would it have to be exclusive?

Car makers can simply support both protocols in their built in systems and whatever device you bring just pairs up with it.

Why would an automaker want to exclude potential customers by only supporting one method or the other is the question you need to ask.  Unless Apple or Google is subsidising the cost of the car they just want to make the most attractive package possible and sell more cars.

about 7 months ago

GoDaddy Files For $100 Million IPO

Que_Ball Never use them except when below cost (110 comments)

Personally I avoid using Godaddy unless there is one of those sales where they are selling domain registration or transfers at below cost.

I have registered a fair number of domains with them at the $1 to $5 price points you can sometimes get and when a decent coupon for transfer comes up from someone better like Namecheap I transfer them away.  Godaddy looses money on the deal.  I might transfer those domains back into godaddy on another below cost transfer deal but I just transfer it back out again if I find another deal or if the renewal is approaching.  I have never paid them the normal cost of renewal.  Every time I have done any business with them it's below the approximately $7.85 cost they are paying to the central registry.

So if you advocate a boycott of Godaddy that's fine.  But if you want to hurt them even more then take advantage of their below cost coupons when you can and actually cost the company money but remember to transfer those domains away again when you can.

about 8 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Recommendations For Beautiful Network Cable Trays?

Que_Ball Industrial look get industrial looking cable trays (250 comments)

You can get really nice industrial cable trays.  Mount them high enough that they aren't immediately noticeable but they maintain that industrial and exposed look.

The good ones are powder coated so you can get a colour of your choice to match the office.

Use a tool called a cable comb when you are running the cables to put the cables into very straight and neat bundles.

Here is the manufacturer of a good quality system for cable trays:
(they have many resellers.  Your cabling contractor likely deals with a supplier who can get this)

Here is the cable comb tool for making straightened bundles of cables that look neat in they tray:

If you want something more enclosed then you can go to full conduit installation using metal pipes.  The pipes can then be painted to match your ceiling colour.

about a year ago

Bad Connections Dog Google's Mountain View Wi-Fi Network

Que_Ball Re:The solution (144 comments)

Would it shock anyone to know I actually did this reboot to a malfunctioning public Wifi base station recently and it worked?

I had a client moving into a new commercial location where the local cable company (Shaw) has one of their public Wi-Fi terminals installed.

They did not have their own network connection yet (booked for a few days later) so we just joined their computer to the public network but it was horrible. The connection showed moderate to high packet loss which was strange because the base station was in the roof a few feet away. Even doing a ping test to first hop (the base station) was showing the packet loss problem. Increasing the packet size on the ping tests showed the problem was got worse as you increased the packets so anything that wanted a sustained download and not small little transactions was suffering worse effects.

So I went into the back, found the power injector for the base station and cut the power. Plugged it back in, and after the reboot it was working well. No more packet loss, and a usable connection.

Maybe Shaw needs to update the firmware on these Cisco base stations they are using.

about a year and a half ago

Scientists Breed Big-Brained Guppies To Demonstrate Evolution's Trade-Offs

Que_Ball Yuppie guppies (121 comments)

The large brained fish decided to focus on their careers instead of settling down to raise a family.


about 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Data Storage Highway Robbery?

Que_Ball EDI VAN charges ~$0.50 per KC (1000 characters) (168 comments)

Back when EDI (Electronic data interchange) was new it was often described as each transaction costing "similar to a long distance fax" back in the days when long distance was expensive. Was about $1.50 per transaction.

They measure the data in KC (kilo characters). Typical pricing back when it was popular was $0.50 per KC in early 90's plus many other fees. (could have been more when it first came out)

For a small company you would make a dialup connection to a VAN (Value Added Network) to submit a transaction and check for new transaction responses. Larger companies would have a permanent X25 network connection to the VAN which would have it's own monthly connection fees and data fees but was faster and near instant. There are still legacy users of these EDI VAN networks who have not shifted to the Internet versions of the EDI standards. Hopefully they renegotiated their rates at some point and didn't just let their contract auto-renew all these years.

SMS is easily the most expensive current communication on a per MB basis in common use today and it gets more expensive as providers tend to increase the rates on SMS and not lower them. $0.25 per message domestic, $0.60 per roaming message on Telus.

more than 2 years ago

Experts Warn About Security Flaws In Airline Boarding Passes

Que_Ball Re:Obvious High Risk (199 comments)

I was randomly selected for the SSS tag on my boarding pass. It was great. We were in Phoenix and the regular screening line was massive, at least an hour long. The "special" line had about 10 people in it. We zipped right through. Would have needed to skip lunch if we were in the regular line.

We noticed the letters on the pass too before entering the lines so I guess they have not really cared about this "issue" in the past.

I think the special screening is more of a quality control measure on the regular screening guys than it's a real boost to security.

more than 2 years ago

"Secure" Shorter .uk Internet Domain Proposed

Que_Ball Re:Like .ca for Canada? (87 comments)

It was possible to register the same name with a different province but the original owner would have to give you written permission first so it was less likely to occur. I can find a few examples where two different companies did get their provincial level domain and now one of them has claimed the second level domain. But it's very rare. Most of the time if another company wanted to register the domain in their province and the system told them it was unavailable they wouldn't pursue it further and try to get permission, they would just pick something else.

So yes, owning mydomain.ab.ca used to mean that the system would not allow anyone else to register mydomain.bc.ca or mydomain.ca. They used to require proof that your corporation was registered nationwide before they would let you use the second level national domain but they would reserve all variations on second and third levels of your domain name automatically. When the system switched to putting all domains at the second level then most of those provincial domain name owners got their second level name registered. They can keep the historical old one and keep paying for it or let it expire and only keep the second level version. There was no discount or extra costs for second or third level domains. They never tried to kick up the costs to register the second level domains.

Maybe the UK could handle their second level domains the same way? I mean they still get the extra money from people who decide to keep both versions but at least they are not raising the pricing.

more than 2 years ago

Accelerator Driven Treatment of Nuclear Waste

Que_Ball Re:Thorium reactors? (226 comments)

Primary reason is the many billions of dollars of development needed to figure it all out.

There is no design for a "working commercial thorium reactors". It's all just bits and pieces of theory, and experimental reactors that only answered some of the questions.

It's a possible technology, just not an actual technology. Kind of like the guy at NASA who recently got into the news for a pen and paper proposal of how warp speed might be possible. We are still a long way from building interstellar spaceships. Just like we are long way from building a Thorium salt reactor that works and is economically viable.

more than 2 years ago

Accelerator Driven Treatment of Nuclear Waste

Que_Ball That's the long term plan for the industry (226 comments)

Yes. Spent fuel has always been considered a long term asset by the nuclear industry. People in that industry believe that as mining the raw ore becomes more expensive and the technology for reprocessing the spent fuel becomes better it starts to become a more valuable source of future fuel.

The industry would be very different if the governments did not push the technology towards weapons production. The reactor designs we have are all old and they are designed in a way that facilitates the production of plutonium. If the research into other reactor and fuel designs that did not have as many dangerous byproducts were pursued it would be a safer industry today.

The most promising alternative is and was to use Thorium fuelled reactors instead of uranium. There is the potential for far safer reactor designs and far less hazardous waste when using that type of fuel. The USA took a relatively short look at this but then they stopped since they could not also produce weapons from these reactors and at the time it was all about the bomb. But from what I have read they will likely become a technology that becomes more interesting over time as it's capable of using depleted uranium along with the Thorium as a way to use up that spent fuel that's hanging around.

It should be obvious though there are significant challenges to getting the theory into a practical design. All those research reactor projects back in the 50's that gave engineers and scientists the knowledge to build the current reactors would need similar efforts to develop the technology for these alternative fuels and reprocessing technologies. It's starting to happen but in China and India where they have not lost their love for nuclear power yet.

more than 2 years ago

Why Your IT Spending Is About To Hit the Wall

Que_Ball Re:Rest Assured (301 comments)

Oh, you noticed they effectively doubled the price of SQL server on April 1 too?

Yeah, they went from pricing based on how many CPU's were in the server to how many cores are on those chips. But the price only remains the same if you have 4 cores in the server yet brand new machines genrally have 8 core CPU's now so it's twice the price now compared to last month for a new server. Microsoft says that the average CPU in the field has 4 CPU's but the average server is a few years old and when it is time to replace it you need to spend twice as much.

more than 2 years ago

Dealing With an Overly-Restrictive Intellectual Property Policy?

Que_Ball Re:A practical matter (467 comments)

And if you're not in one of the states that explicitly grants exemptions, don't just go ahead expecting that you'll win the legal battle.

Good advice. I would suggest the outcome will depend on if the outside project is related in any way to the job you do. If it can be argued that your knowledge required to complete the project was acquired as a result of your employment or a result of training your received at work then things may not be resolved in your favour.

more than 2 years ago

Galaxy S and Galaxy Tab Won't Get Android 4.0

Que_Ball Re:No *official* port. (333 comments)

Hardware issue on Galaxy S. No software fix possible. Using a GPS test app you can only see a small number of satellites in most conditions. Unless you are sitting out in a wide open field on a nice day when there are no sources of interference nearby or high solar activity it will not lock on.

Even the windows in a car will attenuate the GPS signal enough to give you poor performance. Turn it off is the best advice I can give. It will only serve to lower your battery life and frustrate you.

more than 3 years ago

'Free' Games Dominate Top-Grossing Game List On App Store

Que_Ball Setup parental controls now (161 comments)

Even if you leave every other setting unlocked you should go in and setup parental controls on your device to block in app purchasing. Do it now before you head out to the restaurant and you load up something to keep the kids amused not realizing that because you just finished downloading it your itunes account is still unlocked and the kids can buy whatever they want without a password for the next few minutes.

Even if you don't have kids of your own, you might be out with friends or family that do and your generous act of amusing the kids turns expensive.

more than 3 years ago

Computer Opens Unmanned Store For Holiday

Que_Ball More would have paid if checkouts didn't lock (333 comments)

So I infer from the description that if those first customers did not lock up all the checkouts by scanning in Alcohol perhaps more of the later customers could have also paid for their purchases.

more than 3 years ago

How has your opinion on the safety of nuclear power changed after the events in Japan?

Que_Ball Re:Irresponsible Journalism (1148 comments)

CBC radio may have redeemed themselves today with guests who seemed to have a deep technical understanding of the hazards and problems being faced at the moment. Sometimes you need to extend the timeframe a bit over multiple shows to get a more complete picture. The "other side" may not have been well represented in the particular program you listened to but they may not have had access to anyone sufficiently expert enough to fill that time slot. I'm sure they did not have any concious intention to skew their coverage but with news just like most other things you have to work with what you have available at the time and revise the story as more information becomes available.

more than 3 years ago


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