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LibreOffice Gets a Streamlined Makeover With 4.4 Release

Quirkz Re:I wish they'd fix the missing functionality (146 comments)

Compatibility, on the other hand, is one reason I've used them. In my youth I created a bunch of files in WordPerfect on the Mac. Originally they were compatible with Microsoft Word so I didn't care. At some point decades later I realized that by drifting from Mac to PC and to MS Office as a default, I could no longer open those files. Even installing a newer version of WordPerfect for Windows wasn't working for me. Out of desperation I tried LibreOffice a couple of months ago and got the files open. I was very pleasantly surprised, and extremely happy to have my old projects back.

2 days ago
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Latest Windows 10 Preview Build Brings Slew of Enhancements

Quirkz Re:Have some! (208 comments)

You have to go "create new microsoft account", and then select "skip creating a microsoft account" at the bottom of that page.

Brought to you by the people who invented "click start to shut down." I like it.

4 days ago
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Scientists Determine New Way To Untangle Proteins By Unboiling an Egg

Quirkz Re:oven baked? (155 comments)

Now I'm going to have to invent sun-baked potato chips, just to prove a point. And make a fortune on the marketing gimmick. I shall call them Sun Chips. No, wait ...

5 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Where Can You Get a Good 3-Button Mouse Today?

Quirkz Re:Thrift store (429 comments)

I like the scroll wheel for scrolling, but I don't find it at all easy to click the wheel. That function may as well not exist for me.

about a week ago
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Facebook Will Let You Flag Content As 'False'

Quirkz Re:Why (224 comments)

"It's such-and-such a day because of this number and this number and it only happens once in a lifetime"

The most frustrating part about those posts is usually the entire analysis is correct, up until that last throwaway line "it will never happen again." Why do the authors feel the need to include it? In some cases the real answer is it won't occur for another thousand or ten thousand years, but that's not good enough? Of course some of the others (December has five Tuesdays this year) happen about half of all years and are complete junk articles, but I actually find the rarer ones kind of neat, with the exception of the completely erroneous disclaimer.

about two weeks ago
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Intuit Charges More For Previously Offered TurboTax Features, Users Livid

Quirkz Re:Not just self-employed.. (450 comments)

Thanks for the confirmation. I thought so, but didn't want to say that and give anyone bad information.

about three weeks ago
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Intuit Charges More For Previously Offered TurboTax Features, Users Livid

Quirkz Re:Not just self-employed.. (450 comments)

Schedule D won't apply to tax-sheltered retirement accounts (at least during the investment stage; I haven't gotten to the withdrawal stage to figure that part out yet), so it's only if you've got investments outside of that.

about three weeks ago
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Intuit Charges More For Previously Offered TurboTax Features, Users Livid

Quirkz Re:Not just self-employed.. (450 comments)

Taxable interest is a line-item on the 1040. It's not treated as "investment income."

about three weeks ago
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Intuit Charges More For Previously Offered TurboTax Features, Users Livid

Quirkz Re:Schedule D?! (450 comments)

Well, most retirement accounts (IRA, Roth, 401(k)) won't trigger a Schedule D, so it's only if you're investing outside of that, which many people may not need to.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Sounds We Don't Hear Any More?

Quirkz Re:White Noise/Static (790 comments)

Both my kids actually have sound soothers that are programmed to play white noise to muffle background sounds.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Sounds We Don't Hear Any More?

Quirkz Re:Mufflers dragging under a car (790 comments)

Last spring I was watching 'Uncle Buck', a John Candy movie that features multiple car backfires, and I commented that it was an aging joke because it's something you never hear. The next day a car backfired driving by my house, and I've heard a couple since then. I had to laugh at the coincidence, but I also wonder if maybe we tune them out rather than they never happen.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Sounds We Don't Hear Any More?

Quirkz Re:Floppy drives (790 comments)

I'm sure I'd recognize it, but I'm struggling to actually pull that sound out of my memory--it's just gone. What's still there, though, is the sound of an older Macintosh ejecting a disk. That one has stuck with me.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Sounds We Don't Hear Any More?

Quirkz Re:Steam Engines (790 comments)

I still hear that sound at least weekly. Durango, Colorado has a thriving narrow gauge railroad that runs between here and Silverton. Runs from downtown up into the mountains several times every day. My little girl is nuts for it so we ride occasionally and go out of our way to see it drive by all the time.

about three weeks ago
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Radio, Not YouTube, Is Still King of Music Discovery

Quirkz Re:So? You don't need to read it.. (126 comments)

I've had good luck with that, too. I'd say over the past couple of years the ratio is about 20:1 for Pandora:Radio in terms of useful recommendations. One of my main problems with the radio is even when I hear something new that I like I either 1) miss who the artist was in the first place, or 2) hear but fail to remember the name later, when I'm out of the car and capable of doing something about it. With Pandora at least I'm already on the computer, and can just copy/paste, or at worst thumbs-up the song, and increase the chances it'll come back around a second time.

about three weeks ago
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Archive.org Adds Close To 2,400 DOS Games

Quirkz Re:Oh... S*** (198 comments)

Both of those have been available for sale on GOG for years, FYI.

about three weeks ago
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Sony Thinks You'll Pay $1200 For a Digital Walkman

Quirkz Re: Clearly (391 comments)

No kidding. I never notice "poor quality" from mp3's. Frankly, even if I could tell, I don't think I'd care. I mostly listen to music at an office (plenty of background sounds and I'm focused on work), in the car (tons of noise), or at home with the family making so much chaos the music is at best an accent and at worst a distraction I have to turn off. I'm trying to imagine a scenario where I've got enough quiet and focus that I could be so absorbed in the tunes the encoding quality would tarnish the experience.

about a month ago
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WSJ Refused To Publish Lawrence Krauss' Response To "Science Proves Religion"

Quirkz Re:Null hypothesis (556 comments)

I think more atheists get it than you give credit for. There's lots of (in my mind unnecessary and unproductive) quibbling over semantics here. There's many self-identified atheists who take the soft position ("I don't believe in god") rather than the hard position ("I believe there is no god"). The soft position is basically equivalent with what you are assuming is strictly the realm of agnosticism. I've seen so many words thrown around over what's basically a disagreement as to whether soft atheism exists and is or isn't really agnosticism, it seems like a real waste.

about a month ago
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WSJ Refused To Publish Lawrence Krauss' Response To "Science Proves Religion"

Quirkz Re:Metaxas is a fool (556 comments)

Metaxas' entire article seems to hinge on a failure to understand the anthropic principle. It's not even remotely a novel argument, either. Why the WSJ decided it was worth printing in the first place, I'm not sure.

about a month ago
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Science Cannot Prove the Existence of God

Quirkz Re:DesCartes Proved the Existence of God (755 comments)

Descartes presented an argument. Philosophers since then have been poking holes in that argument. I have never heard a modern philosopher state that they consider his argument a valid proof.

about 1 month ago

Submissions

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Running your own ghost investigation?

Quirkz Quirkz writes  |  about 4 years ago

Quirkz (1206400) writes "I am a skeptic, but have friends and family who swear by their ghost stories. I have access to a supposedly haunted house and been tempted to run a proper scientific investigation. My first question is what sorts of tools or measurements would make for sensible metrics to test during a hunt? Temperature change seems to be a common one, but the other devices you'll see ghost hunters use seem pretty random. The second question is what kinds of results would it take to be "interesting"? Baseline readings at several presumably non-haunted locations seem to be obvious requirements for comparison. Once you have those, what kinds of results would it take to convince a skeptic there's something unusual going on, or demonstrate that there's not? I don't have much hope of changing the minds of those who believe, but it would be satisfying to at least be scientific about it."

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