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60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

SIGBUS Re:Because Hollywood. (544 comments)

That's true for audio-only recording work as well. The musical performance that sounds wonderful when heard live will turn out to have all sorts of background noise (noisy HVAC, people moving about, things being dropped, audience whispers, and so on, not to mention cell phones).

about two weeks ago
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Dear Asus Router User: All Your Cloud Are Belong To Us

SIGBUS Which D-Link model? (148 comments)

I have a couple of D-Link DIR825-C1 units on my network, both with DD-WRT, one in client bridge mode and the other as my router. Both have been rock solid, and a worthy upgrade from my classic WRT54G boxes.

about 2 months ago
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James Gosling Grades Oracle's Handling of Sun's Tech

SIGBUS Re:Solaris name dead, but OSS code lives on (223 comments)

I took a look at OpenSolaris late in 2009 when I was considering building a new storage server for home. I really liked what I saw (ZFS, COMSTAR, and the built-in CIFS support), and wound up using OpenSolaris for the new build. Then, Oracle decided to spoil the party. I'm very glad that illumos got off the ground; once OpenIndiana came out, I switched over to it.

As much of a Linux fanboy as I may be, I really like OI or OmniOS for storage server duty, and OI makes a nice virtual machine host with VirtualBox and SMF scripts as well. I would like to see better hardware compatibility, though...

about 3 months ago
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NZ Traveler's Electronics Taken At Airport; Interest in Snowden to Blame?

SIGBUS Re:Chromebook For This Situation (453 comments)

Well, then you're trusting Google not to hand your data over to any random government official in whatever countries you travel to or through. Not to mention, is your connection between the Chromebook and Google encrypted? Is it worthwhile encryption or something as easy to crack as WEP?

Even though it's now over 14 years ago, I deliberately chose not to travel with a laptop to the UK. IMO, the best bet if you need a computer is to get a cheap netbook or refurbished laptop, and install your OS of choice onto a freshly-wiped drive. When you get it home, consider it compromised, especially if Mr. Customs Man has taken it into a back room and/or plugged anything into it.

about 4 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best FLOSS iTunes Replacement In 2013?

SIGBUS Re:Clementine Player (317 comments)

Have they fixed the lack of gapless playback? The last time I tried Clementine, there were playback gaps between FLAC files, which really shouldn't happen. Is gapless really that hard to do? The same applies for music players on Android, by the way.

about 4 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best FLOSS iTunes Replacement In 2013?

SIGBUS Re:Foobar 2000 (317 comments)

Not really. I've tried it a couple of times, and got lots of distortion and dropouts. I'd love a Linux port of Foobar, but that's not going to happen.

about 4 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

SIGBUS Re:In aviation (961 comments)

Two words: Beechcraft Bonanza. The early version became known as the "fork-tailed doctor killer" for precisely that reason. The people who can afford them often don't have time to keep their skills current.

about 4 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

SIGBUS Lack of stability control (961 comments)

I've always wondered if stability control does more harm than good. It can encourage people who know better to push cars harder in the belief that the electronics will save them from trouble. Meanwhile, drivers who grow up with it are unlikely to learn basic driving dynamics (since once again, the stability control takes care of it).

We already recently had a discussion about this in aviation, where automation is usurping basic piloting skills, resulting in situations like the Air France 447 crash. In that situation, we had a panicking pilot desperately pulling back on the stick, which is the worst thing a pilot can do in a stall.

about 4 months ago
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SSD Manufacturer OCZ Preparing For Bankruptcy

SIGBUS Re:How many? (182 comments)

Then again, Intel's 330 is notorious for not getting along with T60/T61 Thinkpads. It happened to me as well - something about its power management didn't get along with my T61; it would randomly freeze the system for about 30 seconds, and no combination of registry hacks and/or driver upgrades or downgrades would fix it.

The workaround was to replace the drive with a Samsung 840. No more freezeups. The Intel drive went into one of my desktops, where it has worked flawlessly.

As for my OCZ experience, good riddance. I had one of their PSUs pop one day. As usual in this situation, it was caused by crap capacitors. Naturally, it was a couple of months out of warranty.

about 5 months ago
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Electric Cars: Drivers Love 'Em, So Why Are Sales Still Low?

SIGBUS Re:Terribly engineered for actual customers (810 comments)

On top of all that there are a few bad design decisions. First is they keep trying to put too big a battery in the cars; this is just stupid until batteries get cheaper and better. Just meet the average commuter's needs for a round trip with margin and you will sell them a car. The next design disaster is when they try to simulate a real gas car by putting a piston engine in as in the volt. The best solution would be to have a low power gas turbine (5-10hp) that can charge the car's battery slowly. This way you eliminate range anxiety by allowing the person to realize that they don't have enough juice to complete the journey so they kick in the turbine (or automatically when they set a destination that is beyond the battery's range) which will buy more range. If the turbine doesn't provide enough immediate range the driver could pull over and get a coffee while the turbine adds a mile of range every minute or two.

Gas turbines have been tried in cars, but the problem is that a large mass spinning at extremely high speeds doesn't work out well in a car environment. The sudden changes in direction (both turns and especially bumps) are horrible for large turbine bearings. Something the size of a turbocharger can handle it, but the equivalent of an even a small aircraft APU is a different beast.

Lastly there are all kinds of engineering gaps in these cars. One interesting one is heating in colder climates. In the winter around here a smaller battery would be eaten just keeping me warm, especially if I am waiting in the car. One simple solution would be to have an alcohol heater which would be simple and single purposed for keeping me warm. This would be great if you could turn it on 10 minutes before you get into the car and it would warm up the car and maybe even the batteries.

Note that resistance heaters have given way to far-more-efficient heat pumps, so it's no worse a range hit than using air conditioning in summer. The HVAC on even a Leaf can be remotely fired up while still hooked to the charger.

Then the last and most important bit which is battery life. That is how many years will these batteries run the car. We all have laptops where the batteries have cacked after a year or two; often fairly suddenly, one moment we had a battery life and then the battery is complaining seconds after unplugging the laptop. So the car companies need to either warranty the batteries and maybe even set an eventual replacement price in stone.

Setting the price in stone might be a bit of a problem, but they are putting warranties on batteries. The Leaf's battery warranty is 5 years/60,000 miles, Tesla's 60 kWh pack is 8 years/125,000 miles, and their 85 kWh pack is 8 years, unlimited mileage.

Even with all that, an electric still isn't workable for my own use case, though it comes close. It's still the whole road trip issue for me. A Leaf would fit 90% of my driving, but it's that last 10% that's the deal-breaker. Sure, I could rent something for the long trips, but that can get expensive.

about 5 months ago
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Canonical Targets Ubuntu Privacy Critic

SIGBUS Re:Hard to do (259 comments)

My own opinion is that Ubuntu jumped the shark when they flipped the window buttons over to the left side and started in with the Apple-esque "we know what's good for you" attitude. The window buttons were fixable, but they should have never needed fixing in the first place. Now they're on pace to jump every shark in the ocean multiple times.

I ended up holding on on 10.04LTS until desktop support went away, and then jumped ship to Debian for my Linux desktop (I also have a CentOS box running Asterisk, and an OpenIndiana storage server). On Debian, I'm finding that XFCE has matured a lot since I last used it; I also discovered that I still can't stand GNOME 3, even in Classic mode.

I've tried Cinnamon on Mint, and while it's nice, it uses far more memory than it should, at least on LM14.

about 5 months ago
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China's State Press Calls For 'Building a De-Americanized World'

SIGBUS Re: Everyone open your firewalls (634 comments)

The idea of the US military shooting at fellow Americans seems pretty silly. Moreover, most people in the military probably come from the "red states" themselves, so they'd not only be fighting their own countrymen, but people from their own regions and hometowns. It's not like all the jarheads in the Army grew up in NYC and San Francisco.

It won't be the military; it will be the increasingly-militarized "civilian" cops. For all practical purposes, they've become a standing army in their own right. All they need is a unified command structure. Besides, civilian cops are exempt from niceties like the Chemical Weapons Convention. The army using CS gas against soldiers: war crime. Cops using CS gas against citizens: perfectly OK.

about 6 months ago
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Cyborg Cockroach Sparks Ethics Debate

SIGBUS In the mammalian world... (512 comments)

...we have cats and Toxoplasma gondii, which alters the behavior of rodents to make them easier prey.

about 6 months ago
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Silk Road Shut Down, Founder Arrested, $3.6 Million Worth of Bitcoin Seized

SIGBUS Re:Tor compromised (620 comments)

But yeah, once /. started talking about it, it was clear that they were going to get busted at some point.

My first reaction when the site hit the news was, to quote Admiral Ackbar, "It's a trap!"

If nothing else, it was only a matter of time before he got nailed. Really, running an online black market? You're asking for trouble.

about 6 months ago
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Time For a Hobbyist Smartphone?

SIGBUS T-Mobile moving 3G to 1900PCS (207 comments)

They're in the process of moving their 3G (UMTS/HSPA+) support to the PCS 1900 band, and then using the AWS 1700/2100 band for their LTE. If you're in an area where T-Mobile has LTE, an unlocked AT&T phone should work on 3G.

about 7 months ago
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FreeBSD Removes GCC From Default Base System

SIGBUS Re:More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (333 comments)

The best way to rearrange a pool is to create the new pool with the desired disks, and then use zfs send to send the data from the old pool to the new one. Even if block pointer rewrites were implemented, I'd still be more trusting of a send (besides, that means you have a backup if everything goes pear-shaped).

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Best To Synchronize Projects Between Shared Drive and PCs?

SIGBUS Re:A Small Voice In the Wilderness Calls Out (238 comments)

It's time someone constructed a version-control file system.

ZFS could be used in such a manner via snapshots and/or clones. On the other hand, you'd need to manually document changes, and there isn't any nice wrapper for network use.

about 7 months ago
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Microsoft Drops Price on Nokia's 41-Megapixel Phone

SIGBUS Deceptive price (197 comments)

Saying it's $100 with a two-year contract is misleading. What's the real US price? TFA indicates £599, which would be about $936.

about 7 months ago
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Mobile Virtual Networks Are Booming Again

SIGBUS There are some drawbacks, though (79 comments)

In particular, MVNOs often have very restricted or non-existent roaming in areas where the underlying carrier doesn't have any towers. Even if roaming is available for talk and text, it will often be shut off for data. This is even common on prepaid plans by the carriers themselves, or captive MVNOs like Virgin Mobile USA and Boost, both owned by Sprint.

Also, carriers give priority to direct subscribers over MVNO customers (which makes sense to me).

On the plus side, though, you can get usable service on the cheap, and if you're using an unlocked GSM phone, you can switch carriers/MVNOs easily enough by popping in a new SIM (watch out for different radio bands being used for 3G/4G, though).

about 8 months ago
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My ISP...

SIGBUS Re:ISP is ok-ish, Mobile ISP is bad (290 comments)

I am using German Telekom for my mobile ISP. They cap after 300MB. Way, way too low. After that it's 64kbit/s!

My DSL ISP is ok. No caps, but the uplink is tiny. I've got 6 MBit downlink, but only 512kbit uplink. Terrible for uploading photos or other stuff.

That's interesting, since T-Mobile US, which is now partially spun off from DT, offers an unlimited data plan prepaid or postpaid at $70/month (truly unlimited for the phone itself, 500 MB tethering per month), as well as less-expensive options of 2.5 GB ($60) and 500 MB ($50), all with unlimited talk and text. There's also a prepaid $30 plan with 5 GB data/100 minutes talk (not sure about SMS), but that's only for new activations; you can't switch to it from another plan. On the plans with limits, it's at least a soft cap, throttled down to (I think) 128 kbit/s.

On the other hand, their high speed coverage vanishes outside of cities, dropping you to EDGE or GPRS. GPRS shouldn't even exist in 2013, and even EDGE is showing its age. Prepaid plans get no data roaming, and postpaid plans get very little. Part of the problem was that T-Mobile neglected their network when they were trying to merge with AT&T. Now they're playing catch-up and rolling out LTE in the large cities to match their HSPA+ footprint, but their high-speed data doesn't cover highways well. Good luck streaming Pandora or Slacker on the road.

about 8 months ago

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