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Comments

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Microsoft's Missed Opportunities: Memo From 1997

Teckla Re:Hindsight's twenty-twenty (161 comments)

The closed iOS ecosystem is about the worst thing Apple ever did to their customers

Whoa now, that just ain't true. Not at all.

Techies tend to forget how ridiculously hard it is for non-techies to administer their computers. Apple's iOS frees its customers from complexity, it frees them from stress and worry about viruses and Trojans, it frees them from the repercussions of being successfully hacked.

Sure, for your typical geek-o-matic here, OMG-I-don't-have-root-and-I-can't-allow-that! But for regular people, Apple's walled garden is a blessing.

5 days ago
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Lenovo Halts Sales of Small-Screen Windows 8.1 Tablets Due To "Lack of Interest"

Teckla Re:Why should Lenovo support their main competitor (125 comments)

I'm typing this on an Asus Vivobook S200E ultraportable (i3-3217U, 4GB, 11.6", aluminum chassis, USB 3.0, $430 new + $80 more for a nice SATA-III SSD to upgrade with; basically what I call a "better MacBook Air than a MacBook Air")

I only took a quick glance, but it looks like the MacBook Air is half the weight, has a better CPU, better graphics, more USB 3.0 ports, much better battery life, lots of useful built-in apps, etc.

Exactly how did you compute that your Asus Vivobook S200E "ultraportable" is a "better MacBook Air than a MacBook Air"?

5 days ago
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New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

Teckla Re:Manager (204 comments)

But seriously, hopefully Microsoft will benefit from him and become a bit more popular amongst nerds.

Why do you hope for that? Microsoft pretends to reinvent itself regularly, but one thing remains constant through the decades: Their goal has unswervingly been lock-in from top to bottom, while trying to nickel and dime you the whole way.

For nerds, this means locking you into their programming languages (e.g., VB or C#), or if not that, at least lock you into their APIs (so that you're as good as locked in, even if you're using C or C++). It means abandonment of entire domains that no longer suit them (look up how woefully out-of-date and ignored the C part of their C/C++ compiler is).

It means locking you into their platforms, whether that be the operating system (Windows) or the browser (Internet Explorer).

It means high prices (have you seen the prices on Windows Server and/or Microsoft Azure lately?), which is not-at-all nerd-friendly. It means guaranteed stagnation in those domains where they achieve dominance. It means product churn for the sake of profits. It means ignoring customers and forcing bad implementations on them (*cough*Metro*cough*) and then taking forever to admit it was a mistake and fix it (when is Windows 9 due out? Next year sometime?).

Just because some new-boss-same-as-the-old-boss is singing some unicorns-and-rainbows song doesn't mean the core of Microsoft is going to change. They're still after the same things they've always been after: Lock-in so severe that the pain of escape ensures most people remain slaves, and profits, profits, profits.

about two weeks ago
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2 US Senators Propose 12-Cent Gas Tax Increase

Teckla Re:Yes, let's tax the poor (619 comments)

12 cents won't affect me one bit. It certainly won't change my driving habits. The poor on the other hand.. well, let's just say if you're living on a fixed income and/or are already below the poverty line a nice big regressive tax might sting a little...

Well, let's think about that for a minute. Let's guess that on average filling up your tank from near empty to near full is around 13 gallons. An extra 12 cents per gallon will come to around $1.50.

If people fill up weekly, that'll be about $6/month. I don't think that'll impact the poor so very much...

Also, wealthy people tend to drive bigger vehicles, such as SUVs, and tend to commute longer distances from expensive suburbs. This will certainly cost wealthier people more money (but still probably not enough to matter).

This proposed 12 cents per gallon tax increase is peanuts, but be prepared for republicans in congress to scream and holler and shout about how it'll destroy America, cause more homosexuality, etc.

about a month ago
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It's Not a Car, It's a Self-Balancing Electric Motorcycle (Video)

Teckla Guaranteed Death (218 comments)

Guaranteed death in a car accident -- what's not to love?

about a month ago
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Apple Says Many Users 'Bought an Android Phone By Mistake'

Teckla Re:Other way around (711 comments)

Just tried it and clicking + fully maximised on every application but Chrome which for some reason has incremental sizing on it. What applications don't work for you?

OS X has what's called the Zoom button, not a Maximize button. It's supposed to size the window to best fit the content. Sometimes it does the same as Maximize does, sometimes it doesn't. Often it doesn't.

Source: My wife switched to OS X about 4 1/2 years ago. The lack of a Maximize button is, indeed, an annoyance. In OS X Mavericks, there's a full screen feature, but that's not quite the same. We frequently merely struggle a bit to manually maximize windows.

about a month and a half ago
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Firefox OS 1.3 Arrives: Dual SIM Support, Continuous Autofocus, Graphics Boost

Teckla Re:Tired of crap "mobile" operating systems (68 comments)

Why can't I compile and run whatever software that will run on desktop on my phone?

Because that's not a useful feature for 99.9% of the market.

about 2 months ago
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The GNOME Foundation Is Running Out of Money

Teckla Re:Funny (693 comments)

It's not the comments that have decreased in quality, it's the moderation. Ever since the whole beta thing people seem be less willing to spend time moderating and meta-moderating the site.

I would moderate more if I could, but (1) I browse /. on my iPad a lot, (2) I use the standard desktop view of the site on my iPad, not the mobile view, and (3) When I open stories in new tabs, it forgets that I'm logged in, thus I can't moderate.

If /. ever fixes that long-standing bug, I would be happy to try to do my part to moderate posts objectively and fairly.

about 3 months ago
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Phil Shapiro says 20,000 Teachers Should Unite to Spread Chromebooks (Video)

Teckla Re:Stay away from my school please (101 comments)

Chrome laptops are consumption devices. They are not creative devices.

This is nonsense. There are a lot of web apps and Chrome apps for creating things.

about 3 months ago
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Why No One Trusts Facebook To Power the Future

Teckla Re:Because you think Google is any better? (218 comments)

It often happens in a conversation about one thing, particularly a complex and nuanced thing, that it will bring up other similar things because they are related in some way. The resistance of some to this natural conversational process never made much sense.

I could speculate that you have a loyalty to Google that you cannot realistically expect them to reciprocate (you do know that, right?), except I've seen lots of people display this tendency who obviously had no such motivation. Some people just like to complain.

Your speculation is incorrect. Pointing out that Google may have issues in no meaningful way adds to the discussion regarding Facebook's well known issues. It's a rhetorical trick to distract from the fact that Facebook has issues.

I'm happy to discuss Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft, etc. But when someone clearly points out people don't trust Facebook, and for good reason, no value is added to the conversation when someone says, "But... Google!"

about 4 months ago
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Why No One Trusts Facebook To Power the Future

Teckla Re:But they can't build anything (218 comments)

Neither Google nor Facebook has ever successfully built a product users will actually pay for.

You mean, other than Google Apps for Business, Google App Engine, Google Drive, etc.?

about 4 months ago
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Why No One Trusts Facebook To Power the Future

Teckla Re:Because you think Google is any better? (218 comments)

Your seething hated of Google is noted. And noted. And noted...

This article is about Facebook. Quit trying to change the subject.

about 4 months ago
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Amazon's Double-Helix Acquisition Hints At Gaming Console

Teckla Re:Beta Sucks (116 comments)

By now, a professional organization would have at least acknowledged the complaints. Slashdot hasn't yet, and I'm willing to bet they never do. For a site that posts so many stories complaining about what other people do, they're remarkably slow to admit when they make a mistake.

Continue to turn the comments threads into a trash heap to drive people away. And don't forget to turn on your ad blocker. Do what you can to get their attention until they publically acknowledge that this is a mistake -- because they're not going to pay attention otherwise.

I can't even get them to give us an option to turn off fucking autorefresh. It seems rather hopeless. :(

about 6 months ago
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Gnome 3.12 Delayed To Sync With Wayland Release

Teckla Re:I'm sorry I'm an idiot (204 comments)

Except that in that brave new future, the keypresses are navigating a round trip - see "google instant search" or just about any textbox now having "completion suggestions" which respond to each keypress...

But that's just one potential solution, it's not the fault of the technology itself. In addition, at least your key presses show up instantly, rather than making a round trip before they show up. Low latency is nice.

I stand by my assertion that equating X11 and the web is wrong, not that it stops the haters and/or the ignorant from parroting it (and getting modded up for it).

about 6 months ago
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Gnome 3.12 Delayed To Sync With Wayland Release

Teckla Re:I'm sorry I'm an idiot (204 comments)

In the brave new future, we're now going to run our software on virtual cloud servers while the display goes over the Internet to our web browser, using Javascript instead of X11.

And the difference is enormous. HTML / CSS / JavaScript can do a lot. Even something as seemingly minor as key presses not having to navigate a round trip is a huge win.

It's popular to equate X11 and the web, but it's wrong to do so.

about 6 months ago
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U.S. Teenagers Are Driving Much Less: 4 Theories About Why

Teckla Re:They don't go outside (635 comments)

If my son is any gauge, the reason they don't drive is because it would require them to leave the house. Whenever we go anywhere, he is always concerned with how far he will be from his computer. The iPad and 3DS will only hold off the DTs for so long...

Get him a smartphone?

about 6 months ago
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U.S. Teenagers Are Driving Much Less: 4 Theories About Why

Teckla Re:Gas price probably has more to do with it. (635 comments)

Yes I drive a lot less than I used to 10 years ago, but it less to do with the Internet and more to do with the price of gas....

I'm not sure why your comment and link to an ancient article on gas prices (2004?!) got modded insightful, but when you factor in inflation, gas prices aren't particularly high. They're at a pretty normal level compared to historical prices (again, inflation adjusted).

That being said, the inflation adjusted income of the middle class has been going down for decades. That's more likely to be your culprit.

about 6 months ago
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NVIDIA Tegra Note 7 Tested, Fastest Android 4.3 Slate Under $200

Teckla Re:benchmark (107 comments)

It does well for on-screen benchmarks, because of the low resolution of 1280x720.

The submitter got the resolution wrong. It's 1280x800, which is actually a quite nice DPI for a 7" device that's only $200.

about 7 months ago
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NVIDIA Tegra Note 7 Tested, Fastest Android 4.3 Slate Under $200

Teckla Re:only 1280x720? (107 comments)

The submitter got the resolution wrong. It's 1280x800, which is actually a quite nice DPI for a 7" device that's only $200.

about 7 months ago
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Chromebooks Have a Lucrative Year; Should WinTel Be Worried?

Teckla Re:There are a lot of people eating their hats (321 comments)

The way netbooks were killed was always sort of fishy.

Microsoft killed netbooks by only licensing Windows 7 Starter on netbooks that were underpowered to run Windows 7 well. Thus, people ended up having a lousy user experience.

Google revived netbooks in the form of Chromebooks by ensuring that Microsoft could not sabotage them.

People never really stopped liking netbooks -- what people didn't like was underpowered netbooks (which was Microsoft's fault) running Windows 7.

about 7 months ago

Submissions

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The Truth about Violence

Teckla Teckla writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Teckla (630646) writes "Just as it is prudent to wear your seat belt while driving, it makes sense to know how best to respond to violence. In fact, it is overwhelmingly likely that some of you will become the targets of violence in the future. The purpose of this essay is to help you prepare for it."
Link to Original Source
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The Riddle of the Gun

Teckla Teckla writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Teckla (630646) writes "Fantasists and zealots can be found on both sides of the debate over guns in America. On the one hand, many gun-rights advocates reject even the most sensible restrictions on the sale of weapons to the public. On the other, proponents of stricter gun laws often seem unable to understand why a good person would ever want ready access to a loaded firearm. Between these two extremes we must find grounds for a rational discussion about the problem of gun violence."
Link to Original Source
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Teckla Teckla writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Teckla (630646) writes "With Democrats soon having the majority in the House and the Senate, the issue of minimum wage is sure to follow. I've seen very little in the way of convincing arguments that minimum wage is a good thing or bad thing. Democrats typically argue that everyone deserves a minimum living wage, and that the economic impact on companies is negligible. Republicans often argue that imposing an artificial minimum wage hurts the economy. I haven't seen either of these viewpoints supported with any kind of serious economic analysis. My question for Slashdot is simple: Is minimum wage a good thing or a bad thing, and why?"

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