top Apple Rumored To Be Exploring Medical Devices, Electric Cars To Reignite Growth
please dont do that apple, I really like Tesla. I dont want apple to be able to remote kill my car if i dont accept their EULA
This sort of thing already made its way into the car industry
years ago with OnStar; VW just introduced something similar called "Car-Net"; I wouldn't be surprised if Tesla's cars already include something similar, too.
top Free Software Foundation Announces 2013 Holiday Giving Guide
After reading through the list it seems they want me to give my non-techie family a bunch of shit they'll never figure out or have no use for anyway. How cute
Maybe your non-techie family members are different than everyone else's, but in general those non-techie family members will never really figure out their Windows or Macintosh PC, or their iPhone, or Google servicesâ"they're going to lean heavily on their family's designated techie for tech support regardless of what they're using (for learning how to do new things, for remembering how to do things they've done before, and for cleaning up the messes they get themselves into). Might as well give them something that's easier for you to support.
top NSA Director Keith Alexander Is Reportedly Stepping Down
the news comes in the midst of a global public backlash over the NSA's widespread surveillance programs
I can't find a reliable source for this now, but I seem to remember someone saying recently (on another, less significant matter): "I don't want to know who's getting fired, I want to know who's going to jail."
Of course, we're not even talking about someone getting fired--we're talking about someone retiring....
top Can There Be Open Source Music?
"Can There Be Open Source Love Letters? or just endless forks of each other, never truly heartfelt, never truly satisfying?"
See Nina Paley's "The Cult of Originality":
In particular, the "I love you" cartoon near the end.
about a year and a half ago
top Can You Really Hear the Difference Between Lossless, Lossy Audio?
Your preference for 24/96 audio as a listener is entirely due to the placebo effect. There are good reasons to master audio in high res, but for listening 16 bit 44.1khz audio is as good as anything.
There's a pretty good explanation of this (and other factors) on xiph.org:
"24/192 Music Downloads are Very Silly Indeed"
top 41 Months In Prison For Man Who Leaked AT&T iPad Email Addresses
If you're going to take the place to be a reactionary "victim" then maybe you should ask yourself who victimized you first -- AT&T perhaps? If AT&T left your car unlocked, would you still blame the thief?
I don't know if I'd blame AT&T for the theft just for
leaving my car unlocked, but I'd definitely blame them for it if they gave my keys to anyone who asked.
top U.S. ISBN Monopoly Denies Threat From Digital Self-Publishing
Only if you really messed up.
top GNU Texinfo 5.0 Released
Every time I run man and get a pointer to texinfo, I want to beat my head on the keyboard. I do not have the time, once again, to look up those obscure keyboard commands so that I may navigate laboriously through the documentation.
Then just pipe it through your pager, and you'll have basically the exact same experience as if it was a man page. e.g.:
top Does Microsoft Have the Best App Store For Open Source Developers?
F-Droid app store, to use its own description "is an easily-installable catalogue of FOSS applications for the Android platform". They even do most of the work, like building your app from source, for you. And F-Droid doesn't even include non-FOSS apps to compete with the FOSS ones. How is Microsoft's thing more FOSS-friendly than that?
top European Commission Support of FRAND Licenses Hurts Open Standards
A license that does not offer a rewarding development model is an invitation for corporations to come in and exploit the developers.
Out of curiosity, and since it helps to establish whether your arguments actually have any grounding in actual experience: what do
you do for a living, what's your method of compensation, and what is your yearly income?
top Ask Slashdot: Best Laptop With Decent Linux Graphics Support?
There are several makers of Linux laptops, at this point:
I've had great experiences buying from ZaReason, I know people who have had great experiences buying from System76, and ThinkPenguin is another option.
I'm writing this from a
ZaReason UltraLap 430 (see recent review on Ars Technica, and a video review by Tom Merritt [note that there are a couple of mistakes about specs in the video]), which I love even more than the Thinkpad X-series that it replaced.
My wife has a
ZaReason Alto 4330 that she loves even more than the Thinkpad X-series that it replaced.
For work, I've had several ZaReason machines--including some
Alto 3880 laptops (the previous generation of what my wife now has). We got the Altos with 8-way multiprocessing (4-core + hyperthreading) and gobs of RAM, with run-times of 3-4 hours on a single charge and weight just over 4 lbs; they've made fantastic developers' laptops for us.
And, for what you get, the ZaReason machines aren't even that expensive (seriously--a monster-power Alto is only ~$1k).
If you ask for it, the computers even come with whatever username you want setup--you don't even have to fill your name into the account; you just turn the computers on and use them (if you don't ask for it, they infer it from the name on the order).
As I understand it from my friends, System 76 is basically the same way, except that they're Ubuntu only.
top In Calculator Arms Race, Casio Fires Back: Color Touchscreen ClassPad
Where are the great programmer's calculators?
Here: Qi Hardware's
NanoNote makes a great programmer's calculator (including graphing/plotting with gnuplot), and it also does some other stuff well, too.
I got one early on, when they were only $100 (as did my wife, and a few friends), and it was worth every penny. These days they're selling for $150, and I'd say they're still worth every penny.
top "Secure" Shorter
.uk Internet Domain Proposed
why not require that every generic TLD we currently have -
.com, .org, .net, .gov, .edu, .mil be preceded by the country TLD to which it belongs? Thereby, one would have things like nasa.us.gov, mit.us.edu, oxford.eng.edu, dod.us.mil and so on. For the ones that already exist, alias them to such a new system, so that those handful of TLDs are generic. After that, there should be less of a proliferation of TLDs. And they all get to be managed by different countries. Only exceptions would be international organizations, like un.gov, nato.mil and so on.
OK, what happens when a person owning a domain moves to a different country?
top Teachers Write an Open Textbook In a Weekend Hackathon
If you want Open Textbooks, and there are many reasons to want them, you should not start by announcing to the world that you wrote the complete thing in a three day sprint. That's just handing a line to the commercial publishers to use in opposing such works.
Maybe not. But...:
If you are not going to do everything that a commercial publisher and their authors would do to ensure the quality of the work...
A teacher friend recently pointed out this
quality of the work in textbooks to me. It seems like quality isn't what makes it hard to compete--rather, it's the same sort of things that made it hard for opensource software to compete with Microsoft et al.
top Why Apple Replaced iOS Maps
I will change to iphone 5 anyhow because im apple all the way.
For this change yes, i will say again and again: fuck them and the horse they rode in on....
Fuck them.... They wont loose me as a customer....
I guess this is supposed to be irony: you got that exactly backward. Unless you mean "fuck them until they're gratified", which would be a somewhat unusual use of that imperative. You're pretty clearly positioning yourself as the `bottom' in this relationship, though.
And work it will or else.
what? You'll get over it?
top Ask Slashdot: Explaining Version Control To Non-Technical People?
I like Michael R. Head's description of VC as "Saving All Your Work Forever":
top Ask Slashdot: Explaining Version Control To Non-Technical People?
So PHB comes around and says roll back to the version that first had x but didn't have y and where to do go? You end up having to go back to the one tagged with that feature and then add in any diffs you see in future checkins that touched that area of code. You end up with a cludge.
This is a case where a DVCS, like git or mercurial, shines. Since each dev has a full copy of the repo, you can work and commit to your heart's content without affecting anyone else's builds. Once you have your major feature completed, then you merge it back into the main repo (after merging in any changes from the main repo to your working copy.)
Better: even in the event that there are actually still issues with the feature when it's merged in, you can continue the branch so that the fixes are all clearly connected to the feature. So it's easy to capture the whole `initial work + tail of fixes' and either revert it or transplant it to another base revision of the codebase.
top Ask Slashdot: Best Practices For Collecting and Storing User Information?
On passwords, I liked Jeff Atwood's article,
`You're Probably Storing Passwords Incorrectly'.
Personally Identifiable Information (PII), I liked Brian Danger Graham's article, `What's in a name database?'.
top WhatsApp Is Using IMEI Numbers As Passwords
Hatta, you're actually not far off from Bruce Schneier's "
Full Disclosure of Security Vulnerabilities a 'Damned Good Idea'".
top Ask Slashdot: Hackable Portable Music Player For Helicopters?
Maybe I should also mention: the reason I originally got my NanoNote was that I was in a situation where, like OP mrhelio, Wi-Fi was more of a liability than a feature.
Not having to worry about RF interference/EMI was a feature. I knew other people who had bought devices with Wi-Fi and then solved the problem by opening-up said devices and diking out the radio components, but I didn't want to have to bother with that.
That Zipit device also appears to have been out of production for a couple of years now.
And, speaking as someone who's used, loved, and even loved hacking on Rockbox, this is one of the big problems I see with it: since it's mostly working `against the grain', it basically doesn't run on anything that's still in production. On the occasion that the Rockbox hackers are able to accelerate the reverse-engineering project enough to port it to something that
is still in production, that gets fixed pretty quickly. This was the case with the iPod that I bought specifically to run Rockbox, for example. When that iPod died, I accepted that Rockbox has an ever-enriching past, but no future. It's a pretty fantastic retro-system..., but it's still a retro system.
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