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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

Rising Ape Re:sure, works for France (265 comments)

Without laws and regulations it is up to you to negotiate. With the laws and regulations it is already negotiated for you, you have no choice but to accept part of your compensation in vacation/sick days rather than in hourly wage.

And without the laws and regulations I have no choice but to accept sod all holiday time because employers won't budge on the issue. The average person's negotiating power is minuscule compared to a big company.

Before health and safety laws workers got killed on the job all the time, and the attitude was largely "there's lots of desperate workers, they can be easily replaced". If a safe working environment was beyond the power of the little people to negotiate, what chance a less serious matter like holidays?

2 days ago
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Comcast Carrying 1Tbit/s of IPv6 Internet Traffic

Rising Ape Re:Advantages? (143 comments)

The fact that someone bothered to make uPnP suggests that there's a need for this capability for average users. Things such as voip, gaming, exchanging files - if you can't have peer-to-peer connections, you're reliant on big centralised services for all of these things. Granted, we seem to have gone down that path already (perhaps driven in no small part by the prevalence of NAT), and these services may have a place, but do we want it to be *all* there is to the internet?

As for your second point - well, Microsoft seem to have managed it, and if they can surely anyone can. I accidentally left my Windows box connected to the internet without an external firewall for a few months with no ill effects. That would have been unthinkable a decade ago.

3 days ago
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Comcast Carrying 1Tbit/s of IPv6 Internet Traffic

Rising Ape Re:Advantages? (143 comments)

And if your use case includes one of those legitimate reasons, then it's your responsibility to know enough about security to configure the firewall. It is fundamentally impossible for there to be a safe alternative to this!

Do you really expect the average user to know about IPs, ports, TCP/UDP etc.? That's not very realistic. I don't agree that a safe alternative is impossible - there's no magic power that packets have to hack a computer. Any failings are due to poorly written software.

If an application doesn't need to listen for connections, it shouldn't open a port. A firewall won't make any difference here.
If an application does need to listen for connections the firewall will need to let them through. Again, the firewall doesn't help - at least not at the level of sophistication you'd see in a home router's firewall.

3 days ago
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Comcast Carrying 1Tbit/s of IPv6 Internet Traffic

Rising Ape Re:Advantages? (143 comments)

The problem with that is how many home users know how to configure the firewall? There are legitimate reasons to have incoming connections. Unless you want to reinvent uPnP for v6, but that would be needlessly complex and probably have security flaws of its own.

Frankly there's no excuse for any modern software to be vulnerable even if connected directly to the internet with no firewall. This isn't 2003 any more, and in any case it's commonplace for computers to be connected to all sorts of untrusted networks such as public wifi. So anything that assumes "a firewall will take care of it" is utterly irresponsible.

3 days ago
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White House Approves Sonic Cannons For Atlantic Energy Exploration

Rising Ape Scary name (272 comments)

"Sonic cannon"? Nice bit of hyperbole. Everyone else just calls them airguns.

That ~ 250 dB @ 1m is a bit misleading. It won't be that loud at 1m because airgun arrays are not point sources. Additionally, there shouldn't be anything that close as it's standard practice to start at a lower amplitude and ramp up slowly. The amplitude falls off with distance quite quickly.

This technology has been in widespread use for decades.

about a week ago
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Dealing With 'Advertising Pollution'

Rising Ape Re:i'm glad to work for free (394 comments)

you either get rid of advertising and pay to watch each video, or you put up with advertising.

I have no objection to paying for ad-free stuff. Of course, to be fair, I'd then like a refund on the part of the price of the stuff I buy that goes to advertising it.

That's the worst thing about advertising - it's surely more expensive than just paying directly, as you have to pay people to make the ad, plus various extra middlemen. And in return for that extra money you get to be assaulted by obnoxious audiovisual pollution.

about a week ago
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Bug In Fire TV Screensaver Tears Through 250 GB Data Cap

Rising Ape Re:It's 2014 (349 comments)

Because we still have antiquated data lines and switches and whatnot that can only handle so much total bandwidth

At least for DSL technologies, the antiquated bit can support full bandwidth 24/7 as it's unshared.

That doesn't stop quite a few companies from putting caps on it regardless.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Correlation Between Text Editor and Programming Language?

Rising Ape Re:Fortran and vim (359 comments)

Actually, it's everything and vim, but I usually code in Fortran

Ah, so you're the other Fortran programmer on here. I've often thought I should learn a proper IDE because I'm working with code that needs serious reworking and something to automate the process would help. Emacs is fine for most things though.

Perhaps I should be thankful I'm not using a card punch...

about a month ago
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Germany's Glut of Electricity Causing Prices To Plummet

Rising Ape Not so good (365 comments)

So what all this is saying is that at the times when the solar panels are producing the most power they can only sell it for peanuts? If it wasn't for feed in tariffs that guaranteed a big payment no matter what the selling price they'd be stuffed.

That's not exactly a ringing endorsement for solar power.

about a month ago
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New Chemical Process Could Make Ammonia a Practical Car Fuel

Rising Ape Re:waste of time (380 comments)

A 5 minute charge would require a charger that could supply about a megawatt (for about 250 miles). Even if you could design a battery pack that could handle that kind of power input, supplying the energy isn't trivial.

about a month ago
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Half of Germany's Power Supplied By Solar, Briefly

Rising Ape Re:Inefficient much (461 comments)

As you correctly point out solar is good for peak load.

In Germany? Here in the UK peak demand is in the winter months, where solar panel output is negligible. I admit I haven't checked, but I suspect Germany's demand profile is closer to Britain than to California.

about a month ago
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Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

Rising Ape Re:Could it be tuned for better mileage though? (432 comments)

Ford (and maybe others) have suggested that an E30 blend would allow them to make significantly more efficient engines due to the strong anti-knock effect of ethanol, particularly when used with direct injection.

about 2 months ago
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Fiat Chrysler CEO: Please Don't Buy Our Electric Car

Rising Ape Re:Indirect tax (462 comments)

Given that European and Japanese cars are massively more economical than American ones, it certainly isn't that. The gas 500s do 59MPG (Imp) and the diesels 76MPG (Imp).

Maybe on the NEDC test cycle, but not in reality. We really need a new, more realistic testing scheme.

about 2 months ago
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US Wireless Carriers Shifting To Voice Over LTE

Rising Ape Re:Does VoLTE work from one carrier to another? (126 comments)

Makes sense, but then surely the same gateway could be used to let an LTE mobile phone talk to a non-LTE mobile phone, without the need to kick the handset itself onto 3G. I can understand the lack of urgency though - VoLTE is hardly a selling point and they'll have to maintain the older network for the forseeable future anyway.

about 2 months ago
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US Wireless Carriers Shifting To Voice Over LTE

Rising Ape Re:Does VoLTE work from one carrier to another? (126 comments)

It seems strange to me that VoLTE needs *both* ends to support it in order to work. What about when you want to call a traditional non-mobile number? Surely they can't intend to keep 2G/3G around forever for this purpose, or is this feature planned for a later version of LTE?

about 2 months ago
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30-Day Status Update On LibreSSL

Rising Ape Re:Fake Security Gurus (164 comments)

Here is a random 8-character password that only uses lowercase letters: dqvkdnbi. Try memorizing that

That kind of thing is easy enough to remember for the passwords you use a lot. For everything else, there's Keepass.

about 2 months ago
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Why Cheap Smartphones Are Going To Upset the Industry

Rising Ape Re:Upset the industry? (234 comments)

I use VOIP sometimes but have often had to drop my calls and go back to the standard phone network because the quality was so poor. Maybe other ISPs or VOIP providers would be better - but it's a bit of a crapshoot. It's certainly not good enough to abandon conventional phones entirely.

about 2 months ago
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Why Cheap Smartphones Are Going To Upset the Industry

Rising Ape Re:Upset the industry? (234 comments)

I tried one of those Chinese smartphones. Absolute pile of crap - technically it worked but it was so slow and frustrating that trying to use it was an utter chore. My Nexus 5 cost three times as much but is easily worth it.

Agree on the contracts though - my monthly bill on Three PAYG is about £5-10.

about 2 months ago
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Should Tesla Make Batteries Instead of Electric Cars?

Rising Ape Re:They've been pushing this angle for a while (362 comments)

Let it die in the middle of a big recession? Not the best idea to put countless people out of work, reducing tax revenue both directly and from less spending in the wider economy. The lower spending of these workers elsewhere would then have knock-on effects and the total damage could easily exceed the cost of the bailout.

Saying "just let them die" would needlessly destroy a lot of normally profitable and productive companies that struggle purely due to a recession that was outside their control, as well as make said recession a lot worse.

about 2 months ago
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Should Tesla Make Batteries Instead of Electric Cars?

Rising Ape Re:They've been pushing this angle for a while (362 comments)

Anyone could have put a huge glass cockpit in their luxury car. They could have negotiated lifetime data plans with cellular carriers. They could have auto-retracting door handles

That huge screen is fucking ugly, like an enormous TV in a small room. The other things sound like gimmicks. Maybe the other car companies didn't do all that because it was a bad idea.

about 2 months ago

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