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Ask Slashdot: What Distros Have You Used, In What Order?

Sir_Kurt Why limit this to Linux? (867 comments)

To get the full story, and to put your Linux distro of choice in context, it might be weel and good to list the full progession.

For me it was:
Mainframe, PLC
Trash 80
IBM PC running DOS 2 through 6
OS/2 V. 1.2 through Warp 4
Redhat 4.2 though 9
Fedora 1 through 14/Gnome
Fedora 17/XFCE

Also run various flavors of Ubunto and Centos concurrent with the Fedora loop.


about 2 years ago

MakerBot Going Closed Source?

Sir_Kurt This - The reason for the GPL (182 comments)

I have not been able to glean what open source licence this project used, but for sure it was not the GPL. But THIS TYPE of misappropriation of code is the reason the GPL ought to be used for any kind of community project like this.

If you use an open source licence that allows the code to be taken and closed then don't cry when others figure out how to profit from your work and deny you the fruits of your own frickin' labor.


about 2 years ago

MS Office 2013 Pushing Home Users Toward Subscriptions

Sir_Kurt Libre Office (349 comments)

OK, so why wouldn't any home user choose a free LibreOffice download over a $100/year msoffice subscription tax?


about 2 years ago

Curiosity Rover Sees Solar Eclipse On Mars

Sir_Kurt An eclipse is NOT more common in S. hemishere (46 comments)

I don't know where the submitter or editor got his/her eclipse frequency info, but the chances of an eclipse occuring are equal for both hemispheres. If you look at a specific short enough time span, it may appear to favor one hemisphere over another, but the eclipse geometry is symmetrical. There are times that a total eclipse vs. an annular eclipse will favor one hemisphere over another because the distance of the earth from the sun varies, but over any reasonable time scale this will all average out.


about 2 years ago

The Future of Browser Choice

Sir_Kurt Don't get a contract. (188 comments)

Sure are a lot of options out there if you don't want to be tied to a contract. I got a new LG Alley phone for about $100 bucks on ebay, and signed up with page plus celluar. Cheap pay as you service, uses all the Verizon toweras, and I can do anything and load any browser I want.

Be flexible, but stand up to the man.


more than 2 years ago

Icons That Don't Make Sense Anymore

Sir_Kurt "Pump the Brakes" (713 comments)

OT but pumping the brakes is not what people used to do before anti-lock brakes. Pumping the brakes is what you do when the brake system hydraulics are failing, and you need to build up fluid and pressure in the line so the pedal doesn't hit the floor when you want to stop. Pumping the brakes was made a thing of the past by dual brake system circuits. Not anti-lock brakes.


more than 2 years ago

Introducing SlashBI

Sir_Kurt Long time user -logging out- (339 comments)

I can't even remember when I started reading Slashdot, but I associate it with my discovery of Linux in the mid/late 90's. I think I found it while surfing around after figuring out how to get my modem to connect using redhat 4.2 . Or maybe it was while I still ran an OS/2 box and found Slashdot while looking at the RC5 teams. Took a while before I finally signed up.

Anyway, I have really enjoyed the stories and discussions until recently. Been thinking about moving on. This latest expansion to whatever-bi just confirms my thinking. Must be a better News for Nerds out there. Guess I'll go take a look.



more than 2 years ago

Harvard: Journals Too Expensive, Switch To Open Access

Sir_Kurt Re:microseconds (178 comments)

I guess you know that the present editors with respected credentials doing all the hard work at the prestigious print journals are -right now- working for free? So you are right. Shouldn't be too hard at all.


more than 2 years ago

Smartphones Invade the Prepaid Market

Sir_Kurt New LG ALLY from ebay + Page plus Celluar (173 comments)

There is actually a fair bit of flexibility out there if you dig around.

When I went looking for a new phone for my daughter, I discovered that Verizon would NOT activate a smartphone unless you get the very expensive data plan, no matter if you own the phone or get it from them. I think around $80 per month.

I did a little research and found Page Plus Celluar. They use the Verizon system/cell towers so coverage is pretty good. No contract, and have a pretty good data/text/phone plan for about $30 per month.

I hopped over to Ebay and found a new-in-the-retail-box LG ALLY 3G Verizon Android phone for about $140. Has a slide out keyboard and all the other bells and whistles.

Works great. Page Plus Celluar will activate the phone with any of their plans. So for example, you could have a call only prepaid talk plan that will give you 2000 mins. of talk good for a year, for a one time payment of $80. And you could still use the data capability of the phone by connecting to a nearby WIFI.

I liked it so much I bought two..


more than 2 years ago

KDE Plans To Support Wayland In 2012

Sir_Kurt X allows us to use legacy programs (413 comments)

In our office, we use the ability to run programs remotely on a regular basis. It is particularly useful for running programs that have dependencies that are no longer included in modern linux distributions.

As an example, I am a big fan of Word Perfect. I have used it to write specifications in our architectural office since maybe 1986. As some of you may recall, Word Perfect was available as a native Linux application -not a port or WINE abortion- I love this program, and would reinstall it at each upgrade, moving the required libraries from the old 2.0 kernel as needed.

Starting about Fedora Core 3, It just couldn't be installed in a way that was useful.

I solved this by installing RH9 on an old box, installed the libraries from Kernel 2.0 installed WP and have been happily running WP on this box with the display appearing on whatever computer I happen to be using ever since.

This is just one example, and maybe seems like a cranky one, but we have many other examples, such as pushing intensive computational tasks off to another computer while having the display on the desktop.

We will miss X greatly. Why this push lately to screw up the Linux desktop, anyway?


more than 3 years ago

How Do You Keep Up With Science Developments?

Sir_Kurt The New York Times (337 comments)

I suggest you get either an online or dead tree subscription to the NYT. Excellent general science coverage. The NYT does the heavy work of gathering together the stories and sources. If you want to know more in depth about the story, use the internet.


more than 3 years ago

GNOME Shell Hurts Gaming Performance

Sir_Kurt Re:Dropping in Quality (232 comments)

If I had mod points today I would mod you up. I have been a Redhat user since the old version 4.2 and Fedora since V. 1. When the Gnome developers made spacial view the default, I truly began to question their judgement and competence as interface designers. I mean WTF? What are these people actually doing with their computers? Not much apparently or they would "get" why these interface solutions are increadibly irritating to true desktop users. And no amount of comment from disgusted users seems to make a difference.

So I will hold out on Fedora 14 and Ubuntu 10.04 untill bitrot gets to me, and then switch to XFCE unless the Fedora, and Ubuntu folks get a clue.


more than 3 years ago

Japan Widens Evacuation Zone Around Fukushima

Sir_Kurt Re:Nuke power (483 comments)

This is not really true. Nuclear energy is not cheap once the plants are up and operating. If this were true the rates would go down when they switch them on. The converse is true, electric rates go up. The reason for this is that a utility can include the (very high) cost of the plant in the rate base.

One of the main reasons that power companies flocked to build nuke plants was fact that they cost so much. As public (monopoly) utilities, they were guaranteed a fixed rate of return on the cost of the plant and all the other infrastructure.

This was the reason that the $6,000,000,000 Shoreham Nuclear plant was allowed to initiate a chain reaction, even though it had been already been agreed to abandon the plant due to safety concerns - Once it was officially operating the cost of the plant could be included in the rate base. Take that, electrical consumer.

So no, nuclear power is not cheap.
The fuel is relatively cheap.

I agree that coal plants should be required to pay into a fund to reverse environmental damage.


more than 3 years ago

Chain Reactions Reignited At Fukushima

Sir_Kurt Re:Whack-a-mole (234 comments)


You did not address waste issue. Wham. Wham

Also, I think it is obvious from the design of the Japanese reactors, That you could certainly fly a plane into the secondary containment building where the spent fuel pools are and cause a very major release, and probably disable the primary cooling pumps to boot. Wham Wham Wham

And even with the best design you still have:
Possible design errors. Wham
Maintenance problem Wham

What else will pop up?


more than 3 years ago

Chain Reactions Reignited At Fukushima

Sir_Kurt Whack-a-mole (234 comments)

More and more I see the attempt to design and operate Nuke plant as a very dangerous game of Whack-a-mole. Operator error, Wham, Design error, Wham, Maintenance failure, Wham. Earthquakes. Wham. Tsunamis, Wham. Terrorism, Wham,

and, what do we do with the waste for the next 20,000 years? Wham, Wham, Wham, Wham........

Miss one time, game over.


more than 3 years ago



eBay to not allow checks or money orders in US

Sir_Kurt Sir_Kurt writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Sir_Kurt writes "In eBay's latest FAQ it is explained that sellers (for the good of the buyers) will no longer be allowed to accept checks or money orders as payment. Electronic payments only. So will Google Checkout, Checkout by Amazon or Amazon Flexible Payment be allowed? No says Ebay "Google's and Amazon's products and services compete with eBay on a number of levels, so we are not going to allow them on eBay" So it basically Paypal only, baby. But remember, This is for our own good."


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