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Ask Slashdot: Workaday Software For BSD On the Desktop?

Viol8 Easiest way... if you have money to burn (264 comments)

Macs arn't exactly known for their low prices and frankly, while the OS, internal hardware and screens might be fantastic, the keyboards and mice are bloody appalling - a triumph of style over usability and then some. So you can add on the price of a proper keyboard and 3 button mouse (if you want full X app functionality) on top of the Mac itself if you're buying a desktop.

2 days ago
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Drone Sightings Near Other Aircraft Up Dramatically

Viol8 Re:No, you're wrong (132 comments)

"ou might want to reacquaint yourself with modern drones. They HAVE altitude control."

Not the ones I've seen. I'm sure if your the same type of rich boomer who can afford 1K for a plaything then you can buy any sort of functionality, but I'm talking about the sort of drones you find in high street shops.

"Throttle? You have two buttons, "Up" and "Down"."

Seriously? Mine has throttle, rotate, forward/backwards, left/right plus trim buttons for all the them.

"And you don't need GPS to stay in one place - a downward pointing camera is more than adequate for position holding."

Bullshit. If you're a foot off the ground sure. Try maintaining position when its at 100 feet and you're looking through a small screen with VGA quality.

about two weeks ago
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Drone Sightings Near Other Aircraft Up Dramatically

Viol8 No, you're wrong (132 comments)

"Modern drones though, basically do "all the hard stuff" for you."

No they don't - they have auto stabilisation and thats it. You fly a drone in any kind of wind and it'll drift and you have to constantly adjust the throttle to keep it at the right height. Perhaps the really expensive kit has GPS and can keep itself at a certain location and height but the cheap ones most certainly do not.

about two weeks ago
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Australian Courts Will Be Able To See Your Browsing History

Viol8 Oh really? (182 comments)

Firefox:

History -> Clear Recent History

And just for good measure clear down the .mozilla directory manually.

Unless they plan on forcing ISPs to store every single URL that every single person in australia accesses 24/7/365.

about three weeks ago
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Cisco Fixes Three-Year-Old Telnet Flaw In Security Appliances

Viol8 Telnet client = great, telnet server = bad idea (60 comments)

Don't get the server confused with the client. Telnet servers should have been put out to pasture years ago except perhaps on small isolated networks. The telnet CLIENT however is an extremely useful debugging tool for connecting to all sorts of text based servers (FTP, usenet, HTTP etc) and I get really pissed off with some distributions that assume because the server is no longer used neither is the client and so remove it.

Also FWIW , telnet is still the default way to access MUDs and some BBSs.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: Stop PulseAudio From Changing Sound Settings?

Viol8 Yeah, OSS was nice (286 comments)

Its only major fault was that it was one-process-at-a-time but that would have - IMO - been pretty easy to fix. But instead they came up with the non portable (to other versions of unix) dogs dinner called ALSA. Christ, trying to program with that API is like trying to cycle with your legs tied around your head. It works - just - but it could have been made a LOT simpler.

Personally I think X windows should manage sounds as well as video allowing networked sound apps and there should be just a single sound API across all versions of unix.

about a month ago
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Lead Mir Developer: 'Mir More Relevant Than Wayland In Two Years'

Viol8 Re:I still don't see what's wrong with X (226 comments)

Theres an advantage to dropping graphical networking support (15 years after even windows has embraced it) and built in inter client communication? More like it made the coders job easier.

"Networked graphics? Hey , thats hard, lets not bother. No one uses remote X sessions in 2014, right? Right? Oh, they do... well who cares anyway. Our server is new and shiny, thats all anyone really wants"

about a month ago
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Lead Mir Developer: 'Mir More Relevant Than Wayland In Two Years'

Viol8 Quite (226 comments)

Wish I had mod points. Canonical arn't really interested in Linux or unix in general other than how it can ultimately make them money. Its a means to an end and if that means dropping 30 years of experience because it doesn't quite suit them then they will.

X is far from perfect but its the unix display standard and it isn't going anywhere anytime soon. If canonical want to go their own way then they'll find their user base dropping away even further.

about a month ago
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Microsoft's JavaScript Engine Gets Two-Tiered Compilation

Viol8 Given that the mobile world has moved to apps... (46 comments)

... I'm not really sure why so much effort is being put into fine tune browser performance when most browsers simply get used to display pretty static web pages. The number of people who actually play heavy duty games or anything that requires realtime performance in a browser is probably miniscule and any real gamer will be using .exe's.

Perhaps if browsers were kept simple rather than this constant effort to try and make them replace the desktop as a one-app-runs-all enviroment there wouldn't be so many exploits and they wouldn't be bloated bug ridden monstrosities.

about a month ago
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Fighting the Culture of 'Worse Is Better'

Viol8 Hmmm... (240 comments)

"I wandered off or a while and when I came back they'd added the STL,which provided some badly-needed data structures and language capabilities"

Most of the common STL containers would be a few hours work to write something reasonably functional. Binary tree maps perhaps a day to get working properly but nonetheless, nothing a competetant programmer couldn't do. In fact this was done in C for years without the STL so your complaint is a bit weak.

about a month ago
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Fighting the Culture of 'Worse Is Better'

Viol8 The whole point of C++ was its C compatability (240 comments)

Back in the day. The clue is in the name. If it wasn't compatible but simply similar then it would have been called something else. Java perhaps.

about a month ago
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What Will It Take To Run a 2-Hour Marathon?

Viol8 Not so fast... (254 comments)

A really fast guy is Usain Bolt. For a marathon you need someone who can keep up a medium speed for 2 hours.

about a month and a half ago
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London Unveils New Driverless Subway Trains

Viol8 Re:Driverless on the deep level tube is pointless (127 comments)

" Especially if there are three carriages full of people - getting them off safely cannot be the domain of one man."

I would suggest that one man has a better chance of doing than zero men. Unless you think the passengers should be left to fend for themselves until help can reach them?

about a month and a half ago
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London Unveils New Driverless Subway Trains

Viol8 Driverless on the deep level tube is pointless (127 comments)

Why?

2 main reasons:

- On the really old lines there is only about 6 inches between the train and the tunnel wall , there is NO escape walkway. So in an emergency a member of staff WILL be needed to evacuate passengers from the front or rear of the train and walk them along the track.

- When the tube gets really busy its virtually impossible for anyone to walk the length of the train inside so any staff might as well be in front driving it , or at least monitoring it in a cab.

about a month and a half ago
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UK Ham Radio Reg Plans To Drop 15 min Callsign Interval and Allow Encryption

Viol8 Re:They did scrap the rules... (104 comments)

Oh rubbish. With a decent setup 4W goes a long way. Anyway, most people ran linears even back in the day though most also didn't have a clue what SWR was and wondered why they kept burning out. Muppets.

about 2 months ago
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UK Ham Radio Reg Plans To Drop 15 min Callsign Interval and Allow Encryption

Viol8 Re:They did scrap the rules... (104 comments)

UK CB channels went from 27.6 to 28Mhz. Only in the 90s was the US/EC band legalised too.

about 2 months ago
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UK Ham Radio Reg Plans To Drop 15 min Callsign Interval and Allow Encryption

Viol8 They did scrap the rules... (104 comments)

... they just called it CB.

In theory a great idea, in practice you got a load if halfwit teenagers and other dimwits who had nothing to say keying up over people trying to have a sensible conversation and generally causing a nuisance. What with them and the people who seemed to think playing music from a crappy cassette tape into the mic suddenly turned their bedroom rig into Kiss FM eventually made CB unusable and it died (in the UK anyway) apart from the occasional diehard and some truckers.

about 2 months ago
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Unpopular Programming Languages That Are Still Lucrative

Viol8 Python is eating Perls lunch (387 comments)

Perl was used because it was a powerful scripting language despite a god awful syntax that took the worst parts of unix shell and awk and made them even more painfully contorted. When an equally (some would say more) powerful scripting language called Python came along with a sane syntax, a shallower learning curve and a properly interactive interpreter its no surprise huge numbers of people jumped ship.

I for one won't miss Perl - it had its day but its day is pretty much done apart from legacy code and the few dyed in the wool web sites still using CGI.

about 2 months ago
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Unpopular Programming Languages That Are Still Lucrative

Viol8 Trendy != popular (387 comments)

It might be fashionable in academia and certain CS circles but I've never once seen it used commercially in 20 years of working in IT. Now maybe I've not worked in the right sort of companies but I've worked for some pretty big blue chip ones and small houses so I reckon I've got a good spread of experience there.

about 2 months ago

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