Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Microsoft Exec Opens Up About Research Lab Closure, Layoffs

TWX Bull (54 comments)

He also stresses that Microsoft will continue to invest in and value "fundamental research".

That's a load of bull. Just about every company that's had significant research institutions and has closed them down has suffered long-term from that choice. Xerox, Bell, IBM, and several others in telecom/computing alone have done this and suffered the consequences.

Fundamental research is what drives long-term profit. Sure, it costs money. But it also produces patentable products that can revolutionize the market and allow the company to profit from patent licensing even when they aren't interested in the market that the patent would apply to. Get rid of the research and the company's products go stale over time, no new ideas, rehashing of existing ones to the point that someone with new innovation comes along and steals away all of the customers. Short-term it might make more profit, but long term it's like selling one's investments for cash.

This is a terrible mistake for Microsoft.

2 days ago
top

German Publishers Capitulate, Let Google Post News Snippets

TWX Free aggregation? A problem? (95 comments)

I'm trying to wrap my brain around how these news outlets thought it was bad for Google to send traffic their way. Seems like any news agency would want to be a high-placed hit on Google's, or anyone else's, news listing.

2 days ago
top

Cisco Fixes Three-Year-Old Telnet Flaw In Security Appliances

TWX Re:Security + Telnet (60 comments)

Depends on how the network is VLANned. I agree, it's not optimal for certain, but in cases where the management team for the devices have one VLAN for just themselves trunked to them, and where they use a common set of credentials to manage (ie, no TACACS/Radius) then it's not really any less secure.

Admittedly if someone makes a mistake and puts the wrong user on that VLAN, or if they need to get to the devices from elsewhere then they may have to traverse the network before getting to that VLAN, so there are issues. I wouldn't use Telnet anymore either if it can be avoided.

2 days ago
top

Michigan Latest State To Ban Direct Tesla Sales

TWX Re:Here you go: (256 comments)

Sorry, forgot to add, I hate the looks of the Leaf. I'd be fine with an electric car that looks like a normal car, but I don't want a Prius or a Leaf or a Volt, I want something that looks normal.

I've considered converting an old pickup with batteries under the bed, but lead-acid would be the most likely battery, and the truck still runs too well to do that to it right now.

2 days ago
top

Michigan Latest State To Ban Direct Tesla Sales

TWX Re:Tesla wasn't the target, it was China (256 comments)

I want 150 miles based on the size of the (sub)urban area in which I live. My commute is 20 miles round-trip. My wife's is 40 miles round-trip. I want to be able to at least reach downtown after work and back home again. It's also not uncommon to do things on the weekends that are much further away than work.

I don't think that 150 miles is unreasonable. That's half of the range of a gasoline powered car on a single tank of fuel. I'd love it if a car could get a 300-mile range for $30,000, but I know we're not there yet.

2 days ago
top

Deutsche Telecom Upgrades T-Mobile 2G Encryption In US

TWX Re:Oh, things like our... (27 comments)

Unfortunately any large collection of people destroys the ability of a modern cell network to communicate with handsets. When I go to conventions I bring my 2m HT. Granted that means I'm limited to talking with other hams, but still better than absolutely nothing.

2 days ago
top

Michigan Latest State To Ban Direct Tesla Sales

TWX Re:Tesla wasn't the target, it was China (256 comments)

It's a lot more likely that foreign auto makers would use a dealer network than sell direct though, as there are more storage concerns with the importation of vehicles compared to when they're produced domestically, plus the nature of international trade might require an American holding company to do business more easily.

I think this is more an auto-industry trying to screw with the very nature of the market itself with protectionist practices than it is anything else. American automakers have never happily sold non-petroleum-fuelled vehicles in any real quantity, and while Tesla's cars so far have been luxury, they're looking to ramp up economy of scale and pricing for mid-line products that could really threaten the status quo. Teslas might be more expensive to purchase initially, but their lower operating costs and lower maintenance costs make them attractive to those drivers that don't need to go more than a couple-hundred miles a day and plan to keep their cars for more than a few years.

I can state, definitively, that if a $30,000 electric car with a 150 mile range on a single charge became a thing I'd have to consider it. That's plenty for commuting and errands for my household, and since we already have a four door sedan with low miles as the out-of-town trip car, we wouldn't need extended range on something in the city. Having relatively clean maintenance would also be a plus.

2 days ago
top

The Classic Control Panel In Windows May Be Gone

TWX Re:Just keep it off the servers.... (347 comments)

So why not make the GUI application run on the client workstation being used by an administrative-level account? After all, lots and lots of servers are VMs now, not OSes tied directly to real hardware.

2 days ago
top

The Classic Control Panel In Windows May Be Gone

TWX Re:Just keep it off the servers.... (347 comments)

Why is there a resource-intensive GUI on a server anyway? Is the server supposed to be able to play Solitaire or World of Warcraft? Or is the server supposed to, oh, I donno, serve files and applications to client stations?

That's one thing I never understood, why Microsoft went GUI with the servers like they did, other than to know that they sold a lot of server OSes to people that had no business running servers in the first place...

2 days ago
top

Deutsche Telecom Upgrades T-Mobile 2G Encryption In US

TWX Oh, things like our... (27 comments)

...security system?
...server room HVAC system?
...Halon fire suppression system?


Fairly low-tech, but rather important none the less, and monitored via cell network as a backup in case the WAN link goes down...

2 days ago
top

The Classic Control Panel In Windows May Be Gone

TWX Re:Just keep it off the servers.... (347 comments)

Had to maintain a Windows newer Server system last weekend.... dealing with the Windows newer configuration interface on a server makes me very angry.

Said every Windows admin, ever.

Though all joking aside, changes should make the job easier, or more intuitive, or more cohesive. The change from the 3.1/NT3.5 interface to the Windows 95/NT4.0 interface was an improvement, but slowly fragmented as the GUI design kept changing over time (I dare not call it evolving!).

It's already awkward enough having separate control panels, one for most functions, the other for "Administrative Tools - Computer Management". That needs to be addressed, along with reconciling between two separate GUIs.

2 days ago
top

Google Announces Inbox, a New Take On Email Organization

TWX Re:More changes I don't want ... (172 comments)

One could thread messages before webmail if one's mail client had support for it. Hell, Usenet and Fidonet clients could thread messages, as could public message boards. That technology dates back to the dawn of the personal computer, and may well have existed on big-iron machines before that.

That's kind of what pisses me off about modern "innovation", it's reimplementing something that already existed, much of the time, and trying to call it novel or new. There are very few legitimate new technologies these days.

Even when they're going on about VPC and being able to spawn apps, that's just X Consortium all over again. From 1984.

3 days ago
top

NPR: '80s Ads Are Responsible For the Lack of Women Coders

TWX Re:All the movies had women in business (766 comments)

Don't forget the weird era between the invention of the personal computer and its modern ubiquitousness, where computers were not necessary for every day life, but were useful as communications devices for the lonely, introverted, inept, or ostracized. People that sought solitary habits got into computers, software development, and the like, and developed something of a counterculture of computers that drew in the computer professional to an extent, but also became easy to stereotype.

While there have been ostracized or otherwise non-mainstream women in society, they did not seem to adopt computer culture, such as it was, during this period of growth. Maybe chauvanism from the men, maybe greater options for women socially, whatever the cause, women didn't end up in this line of work as much as men, and the culture that was constructed wasn't terribly woman-friendly.

It takes a long time for a culture to change when it doesn't want to. If men don't want to see women in coding jobs, it's not difficult for men to make it less desirable or difficult for women without even having to break the law.

What I find amusing is that computing is one of the few places where gender, race, age, and any other characteristics of the flesh aren't necessarily identifiable or even important for doing the work, yet it still has these problems. It's almost easier to integrate a construction site than it is an IT department.

3 days ago
top

Cell Transplant Allows Paralyzed Man To Walk

TWX Re:Pros and Cons (161 comments)

My father-in-law worked for Boston's sewer department until he was forced to retire at 70. Approaching 20 years later he's still going strong, and last year actually dug-down to find a sewer drain pipe breakage in his own yard, probably six feet down.

I don't think that the man has had a sense of smell for close to 50 years, and it hasn't held him back.

3 days ago
top

Cell Transplant Allows Paralyzed Man To Walk

TWX Re:Pros and Cons (161 comments)

One can get used to smells a lot easier than one can get used to being bodily severely handicapped...

4 days ago
top

Cell Transplant Allows Paralyzed Man To Walk

TWX Re:I'm still waiting... (161 comments)

There have been several medical procedures that were piloted with embyronic stem cells first, then later they figured out how to do them with adult stem cells or other cells from the patient.

The point wasn't to use embyronic stem cells for treatments, that leads to immune compromise and rejection. The point is that embryos that were unused from IVF procedures and slated for disposal were able to provide some benefit before destruction, in the form of research.

Unless you're willing to volunteer your womb to implant these embryos then they never had a chance of becoming people anyway, and were one refrigeration accident away from being lost anyway.

4 days ago
top

Google Adds USB Security Keys To 2-Factor Authentication Options

TWX Re:USB Device Recommendation (119 comments)

So, what is a good USB device for this?

Probably one whose controller firmware hasn't been compromised...

4 days ago
top

'Microsoft Lumia' Will Replace the Nokia Brand

TWX Versus Oracle and Java... (150 comments)

...where we look at Oracle's rebranding of Java and think, "you're not fooling anyone," and, "And we thought it was bad under Sun's stewardship..."

4 days ago
top

NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

TWX Re:Compelling, but a mix still better... (396 comments)

While humor surrounds the adage, "If brute force isn't working, then you're not using enough," there's a degree of truth in that statement too.

I'm foreseeing problems as stupid or annoying as landing in the bottom of a shallow crater, and having to manually carry the rover up to the lip of the rim, plus all of the supplies, the habitat module, etc. I would expect a lot of it to be modular, but being able to physically move heavier things is really never a disadvantage. Then there are situations with stuck things, levers, etc, where simple brute-force is necessary.

I service my own vehicles and back when I had POS vehicles I had to swap transmissions in and out, and not only did I have to deal with the weight of the transmission, but the torque on all of the bolts. Even I had times when I had to resort to a length of pipe on a breaker bar as well.

I think that a thoroughly mixed and diverse crew makes a lot more sense. Hell, if they can assemble a crew of hedonistic swingers that wouldn't develop passionate confrontation over sexual liaisons, that would probably be even better, so that everyone is sated on this long journey in close quarters.

4 days ago

Submissions

top

Ask Slashdot: What would you actually want in a smart watch?

TWX TWX writes  |  about a month ago

TWX (665546) writes "With the hype in recent Smart Watch offerings lately, no one seems to be truly happy with what's available or the capabilities in various devices. I personally want one that acts a a central hub for 3G/4G/LTE connectivity for any other kind of device that I want to use, but manufacturers now seem to be stressing more functionality on the watch itself as opposed to a modular approach. So, what do you want in a smart watch and other wearable, personal computing?"
top

Poll: Magnets near my electronics?

TWX TWX writes  |  about 2 months ago

TWX (665546) writes "Poll Options:
Get that thing away from me!
I know in my head it's fine, but no.
Eh, whatever.
Pretty magnets stuck to my case.
Tablet magnetized to my case!"
top

The sorry state of FOSS documentation

TWX TWX writes  |  about 3 months ago

TWX (665546) writes "I've been out of computers as a serious home-hobby for many years and in returning I'm aghast at the state of documentation for Open Source projects. The software itself has changed significantly in the last decade, but the documentation has failed to keep pace; most of what I'm finding applies to versions long since passed or were the exact same documents from when I dropped-out of hobbyist computing years ago. Take Lightdm on Ubuntu 14.04 for example- its entire configuration file structure has been revamped, but none of the documentation for more specialized or advanced uses of Lightdm in previous versions of Ubuntu has been updated for this latest release. It's actually harder now to configure some features than it was a decade ago.

TLDP is close to a decade out-of-date, fragmentation between distributions has grown to the point that answers from one distro won't readily apply to another, and web forums for even specific projects are full of questions without answers, or those that head off into completely unrelated discussion, or with snarky, "it's in the documentation, stupid!" responses. Where do you go for your FOSS documentation and self-help?"
top

Resources for a new Infrastructure Specialist

TWX TWX writes  |  more than 2 years ago

TWX (665546) writes "I've just graduated at my employer from desktop support to network infrastructure support, dealing with everything from smashed telecom receptacles to switch failures and single-mode fiber between campuses. They're interested in purchasing equipment for the job beyond the punch tool, sheetrock saw, and 10/100 Fluke Nettool that we already have. I'm looking for suggestions for tools and equipment, specifically to test gigabit copper and both single and multimode fiber. Anything else special that you think would be useful for an infrastructure technician in an organization with upwards of a hundred sites with hundreds of telecom rooms, a hundred-thousand copper horizontal runs, and miles of fiber would be much appreciated."
top

Would you buy a color E ink ebook reader?

TWX TWX writes  |  more than 3 years ago

TWX (665546) writes "Yes!
Maybe, depending on how it looks.
No, I prefer my ebooks LCDish
No, I prefer dead-tree editions
I'm stuck with monochrome, you insensitive clod!"
top

Inexpensive wifi/radius for home hobbyists?

TWX TWX writes  |  about 4 years ago

TWX (665546) writes "I'm looking to get some hands-on experience with Radius and commercial-style Wifi. I'll also soon have an environment where three or four APs will be necessary to cover everywhere, so there's a practical side as well. The trouble is, all of the equipment that I can find is prohibitively expensive, and while I expect to spend something on APs and cabling, I really would like to avoid paying for expensive commercial APs if I can avoid it. I'm looking for consumer-priced solutions, if any exist, and documentation. I know that several consumer APs are marketed as friendly to hobbyists who wish to modify them, so I'm hoping that some project for those APs to make them work with Radius is available..."

Journals

TWX has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?