top RadioShack To Close 1,100 Stores
Meh, why would Monoprice want to run brick and mortar stores?
The Slashdot crowd knows them well. Joe Sixpack still thinks he needs to pay $99 for a Monster Cable. As long as people buy HDMI cables from Best Buy, there is room for Monoprice to exist.
Between their own website and their increasing selection on Amazon I'm not sure why they'd bother
Personally, I go to Monoprice to buy, not to browse. Their website is designed for this, and wonderfully so. The retail side of things could take care of the other half.
I mean how many people need a cable today and not tomorrow with express shipping or in two days with free shipping (thanks Prime!).
HDMI cables are, in fairness, a high-margin item that can tolerate higher latency. However, Monorprice sells plenty of other things - routers, speakers, security cameras, monitors, home theater receivers...really, they're not unlike Radio Shack of the 80's, they're just known best as the place where you can get a kilometer of ethernet cable for half the price of Home Depot.
I concur that ordering online mostly works, most of the time. At the same time, if Sony, Microsoft, Bose, and Harmon Kardon can justify having retail stores, then I postulate that brick-and-mortar isn't as dead as Amazon wants you to think it is.
top Apple Refuses To Unlock Bequeathed iPad
I subscribe to a service called PrimeCuts. It's a service that gets music in the hands of mobile DJs and radio stations, with the full blessing of the RIAA (not that I necessarily desire to be in the RIAA's good graces, but if the Tannenbaum and Thomas-Rasett cases prove anything, it's that they aren't fair regarding noncommercial infringement, thus, commercial infringement in the context of being a mobile DJ would involve that much less fairness...). I cannot (legally) sell the CDs they send me on eBay. I'm pretty sure I can't even legally give them away, for free, even as a permanent transfer. My only recourse, should I wish to absolve myself of the CDs, is to sell my DJ business. The discs are a business asset and they can be permanently transferred as a part of the whole business being transferred, but not as discs by themselves. I think that there is merit to some sort of parallel in this case.
Usual not-a-lawyer disclaimers apply, but my logical reasoning says that a permanent transfer of the iTunes account would allow for digital content to be used by the beneficiary of the will. The apps/music/videos are still tied to the same iTunes account and aren't being transferred between accounts (a requirement for your 'secondary market' analogy to apply), but the account is being used by the beneficiary of the will. Now, for this to work, there needs to be a few things determined:
1.) is digital content given to an account, or a human?
1a.) If account, is it a reasonable argument that since the iPad was left, that the account is an inexorable part of the device? e.g. if a house is stated in a will, but the keys are not, is the beneficiary thus not allowed to enter the house? 1b.) If human, does the Apple EULA explicitly state that the rights cannot be transferred within a will? If so, it seems grounds for a court battle, since intellectual property is transferred all the time as a part of a will - art, vinyl records, DVDs, computer software on plastic disc, etc. Is there sufficient legal precedent to state that content purchased from Apple is not subject to the same laws that allow DVDs to be subject to the terms of the will? 2.) Could it be argued that the only reason this case exists is because there is a passcode on the device, without which, Apple probably wouldn't have been contacted in the first place? 3.) It is entirely possible that there are notes, voice memos, photos, and videos that were generated by the deceased, not by Apple or its licensors. Apple's withholding of the passcode prevents the user from accessing that data, which seems like shaky ground as well.
Then again, this is the problem with 'magic boxes' - people don't quite understand exactly how things interrelate, which means that things that aren't explicitly specified are subject to ambiguity for no reason.
top RadioShack To Close 1,100 Stores
If Monoprice buys them...
1.) Monoprice has a brick-and-mortar presence. They're well known for having cables super-cheap, which would be impossible to sustain at retail, but even if they sell 6ft. HDMI cables at $7.99 each, they'll still be cheaper than anyone else within a 50 mile radius AND pretty easily make up the difference.
2.) Monoprice is basically vertical at this point. They only need to sell first party gear, so they don't have to "pay" the third party manufacturers in order to have the merchandise around.
3.) Monoprice may not sell capacitors and resistors, but their merchandise has a better overlap with Radioshack than basically anyone else who would buy the retail space.
4.) With retail space, Monoprice can beat Amazon at their own game - carry the iPhone chargers and HDMI cables and 3.5mm aux cables and basic home routers and security cameras in huge quantities to make the money from the masses, and then for the oddball request for a SAS/SATA breakout cable, buyers get $1.99 overnight shipping to any Monoprice store.
To me, that would be amazing. Alas, I can dream.
top Tor Is Building an Anonymous Instant Messenger
Okay, first off, the nature of instant messaging is such that you can't truly have an anonymous system. After all, while "the network" may not know Alice, Bob, and Carole, the three of them must know each other and be able to distinguish between them...otherwise you've simply got ChatRoulette and the purpose of IM is largely moot.
Retroshare provides fully decentralized IM, pseudo-email, and file transfers. It's a wonderful tool in this regard. It solves the problem of $IM_SERVICE keeping a record of your chats, because there isn't one. It solves the problem of packet sniffing, because it's all PGP based and thus there is no such thing as an unencrypted packet that enters or leaves the software. It solves the problem of needing a server, because everyone is a peer. All of the things that this Tor program seems to solve, has already been solved, and then some. "Well then,why doesn't everyone use it?" Well, the nature of Retroshare makes it difficult to gain critical mass. You have to understand, at some level, how PGP works - instead of a 'friend request' with that person's actual name, you get to share public keys to 'add' them. This is fine and dandy, but opens up a few new problems. First, even cutting-and-pasting something the size of a PGP key and then reciprocating it to the other person is going to cause the eyes of most people to glaze over. Second, you'll need to exchange keys somehow; if you're e-mailing keys back and forth, most people would say "...so just e-mail the damn message". This is where the file sharing half comes into play, since users can trade files directly without having to do much else. However, with Dropbox/Gdrive/1Drive/etc making transfers stupid simple, the practical application for Retroshare in the eyes of Facebook Chat and Whatsapp users starts to wane significantly when put up against "use an already-functional communication medium to do a PGP exchange that will facilitate another communication medium." Bonus points for Retroshare being a smidge petulant when it comes to port forwarding, and not having a mobile version for any platform.
Conversely, we have IRC. it's ancient, and the UI of mIRC doesn't jive well with the Instagram crowd, but anyone with some semblance of tech skills can run an IRC server. Set that up with SSL and your communications are encrypted, with nothing more than a generic handle to identify you with. The problem is that you'll need someone who can set up such a protected server, and by definition, you have a single point of failure. IRC's other failure (which may apply to Retroshare as well) vs Tor is that IRC does involve IP addresses, so you'll still need a proxy of some kind (or Tor itself) to obfuscate that little nugget.
Tor routing communications through other users as a part of the protocol is the one problem it solves. Secure transmission of text-based messages has been solved pretty well already, "Anonymous IM" is an oxymoron based on the fact that IM in itself usually assumes a prior relationship of some kind between the two parties, and even if it didn't, each user will need *some* sort of unique identifier to ensure that Alice gets messages meant for her, Bob gets his, and Carole gets hers.
top Gabe Newell Responds: Yes, We're Looking For Cheaters Via DNS
users for whom "activate.adobe.com" resolves to 127.0.0.1 will be placed under 'additional scrutiny'.
Also, Steam may find themselves with fewer users than Origin.
top Dear Asus Router User: All Your Cloud Are Belong To Us
Shit, man - I can do that with a Raspberry Pi, a copy of FreeBSD, a multi-GB MicroSD stick, and I'd get an infinitely more secure solution to boot.
No one is doubting that. I'd venture it a safe wager that nine Slashdotters out of ten can set up some form of network storage using a RasPi or a spare desktop. The reason why router-based access is handy is that most routers take roughly the same electricity as a CFL light bulb, and by definition are network accessible, either via SMB, FTP, or DLNA. You're not putting a Samba share accessible on the WAN port. It's the same principle as the Western Digital Personal Cloud drives, only without using an ethernet port. The routers also allow printer sharing for standard USB printers. As an added bonus, these routers run Transmission along with QoS - no need to leave your desktop on to run your BitTorrent downloads, and the QoS is done at the router level, so instead of the computers competing for the bandwith, the router can give the torrent downloads lowest priority, and
/know/ when to flush stale TCP connections. Again, all of this is done at the router level, using whatever USB storage medium happens to be handy.
If you don't see the utility in such a solution and would opt for the RasPi instead, then to each his own, I guess. I personally find the hard disk + router combination to be a lot more compelling.
top Ask Slashdot: Is Crowd Funding the Future of Sci-Fi?
I think the closest thing I have seen to an actual science fiction movie in the last 30 yeas is "Deep Impact".
I'll give honorable mention to "A.I.", as it did a similar job of having the true story be how the people reacted to there being artificial children who could be programmed to love.
Additionally, I think that amongst the better true sci-fi series made in recent years was "Defying Gravity". One could possibly make the point that it was a 'soap opera in space' to a certain extent, but its focus was on the characters and their personal struggles, not the window dressing.
Oh well...I do hope to God that they don't remake "Forbidden Planet" though...
top Windows Replacement? ReactOS 0.3.16 Gets Themes, CSRSS Rewrite, and More
I'm not sure what place OS/2 has in this day and age, even as an exercise in creativity for an OSS implementation....I don't feel that most of OS/2 at its' core is really worth preserving as it is...OS/2 had a lot of power, and was really awesome in many ways. I just feel that there's not much worth taking and preserving from it, when compared to other systems of today.
See, OS/2 as a desktop OS, I concur. I got a copy of OS/2 Warp 4 off of eBay for $5 on a whim (Weird Al said it best when he said "junk keeps arriving in the mail...from that worldwide garage sale..."). I installed it on a Thinkpad T61 because I was bored. Half of me says that the choice of a T61 was to give OS/2 the best shot of actually installing without throwing up and that OS/2 wouldn't have done all that great on more exotic hardware not made by IBM who, incidentally, did have an OS/2 driver selection for the laptop on its website. The other half is surprised that a decade-old OS was able to install just fine on the hardware I threw at it, detecting and working with everything but the fingerprint reader and the Intel 5300 802.11n wi-fi chipset. It was a fun experiment, but given that the only software I was able to find to run on it was the garden variety open source stuff you can get for literally every Linux ever, I didn't spend a whole lot of time on it.
That said, I do know that OS/2 had a few places where it rocked. Notably, ATMs almost universally ran OS/2, and probably still would if it weren't for the requirement for the headphone jack to read everything for the blind community (and no, I'm not upset with the blind community or the legislators that made it possible for ATMs to be used by those with visual impairments - I'm genuinely glad that the problem was addressed). OS/2 is still running in your local Pep Boys; every PoS terminal running there runs OS/2. Microcenter might as well, actually, but I don't have confirmation on that. A friend of mine tells me that he runs OS/2 on a server and was serving up traffic that would max out most rack servers running LAMP (10,000 requests/sec for a PHP heavy forum), but using OS/2 and Domino Server (for web, not mail - he didn't hate himself) on a server with a quartet of 500MHz processors and a gig of RAM (maybe two, I forget).
I don't know if I'd go all the way to "preserving it", but I do think that open sourcing the existing builds would be wonderful, as its object oriented implementation of...basically everything (including file metadata) could stand to be borrowed elsewhere in desktop OS world.
top Windows Replacement? ReactOS 0.3.16 Gets Themes, CSRSS Rewrite, and More
leaving Windows as a memory as the ReactOS community take the best parts of OSS development and apply it to making my very expensive Windows software run.
I honestly don't understand how anybody could think Windows is expensive.
I wasn't referring to Windows being terribly expensive. I was referring to ~$5,000/seat AutoCAD licenses, $1,500 Adobe Production Studio licenses (Pre-CC; some of us actually paid a hefty sum for the plastic-disc version), $7,000 Waves VST plug-ins, and the like. Alternatively, you have things like software drivers for some very specialized printers, e.g. Designjet units that print on rolls of paper four feet wide, or sign-making cutters that cut glass into shapes based on EPS files. $150 for a copy of Windows is indeed chicken feed by comparison. Giving up Windows gets very, very expensive when it means getting rid of a four-figure piece of software or a five figure glass cutter.
"but I'm not sure what problem ReactOS solves."
In an ideal world, I'd like to run Windows applications on an operating system besides Microsoft Windows. ReactOS, in its ideal form, solves this problem. Presently, it does not.
"Folks who are enamored with being able to customize their OS already have Linux and several other open-source choices."
My ideal computer runs KDE as its desktop environment, as a launcher for Adobe Premiere, Serato, Mediashout, and Mass Effect just as naturally as it will load Konqueror and Konversation. There's a kludgy implementation of KDE on Windows that is in progress, but it does, obviously, require Windows to work. Similarly, "customizable" and "able to run Ableton Live" are mutually exclusive at present.
top Windows Replacement? ReactOS 0.3.16 Gets Themes, CSRSS Rewrite, and More
Now before I say anything, do know that I GREATLY applaud the efforts of the ReactOS platform. I am incredibly impressed by the huge undertaking the ReactOS team has decided to pursue. Programming an open source, binary-compatible alternative to Windows is, in my opinion, the most difficult OSS project to ever make happen - after all, Microsoft can't exactly do it right when they have the actual source code, a lot more software developers, and a LOT more money. I do one day hope to be able to use it as a primary operating system that will work with my existing hardware and software as seamlessly as it presently does with Windows, leaving Windows as a memory as the ReactOS community take the best parts of OSS development and apply it to making my very expensive Windows software run.
I really don't mean to be a jerk to the devs, because I know that I have no skill, talent, or ability to write an operating system. I know that they have to hit a constantly moving target, while making plenty of rough decisions along the way: two pieces of software exist. One doesn't work past Windows XP. One works only on Vista/7/8. Which do you make compatible? Microsoft clearly has their way of going ("forward", i.e. Win8 apps), but ReactOS could easily spur adoption by catering to people who have $5,000 pieces of hardware that are no longer made, perfectly fill their needs, and don't have drivers for >WinXP. This is a tough question to answer, and one I do not envy or posit a response.
Based on their demos, it seems that they're going the 'Open Source XP' method, as can be deduced based on their demos of Office 2003 and Photoshop CS2, the former being four revisions out of date, and the latter being five (assuming we count 'CC' as a single version). If the
/only/ thing it will run is old software that is not being updated, I understand that - it's no longer a moving target, after all. However, constantly playing catch-up with Microsoft, though inherently a consequence of the nature of the project, is all but impossible to truly consider a replacement.
Perhaps I need to read up on their website or do some Google searching, but are they planning to start eyeballing Win7 at all? What about more recent iterations of DirectX? I'd love to be independently wealthy enough to dump a few million at the project, and yes, next payday I plan on sending $20 or somesuch to the cause. That doesn't mean that the devs will be able to achieve critical mass effectively.
Having said all of that, if they could get an OSS flavor of Windows ThinPC up and running (i.e. completely iron out hardware compatibility and a remote desktop client), and charge even some nominal amount for it so that companies could use it instead of ThinPC (which is stupidly licensed), that'd be a great way to start making inroads.
top Ask Slashdot: Distributed Online Storage For Families?
Everyone's fairly tech savvy, right?
1.) Figure out a folder structure that makes sure that everyone's data will be put somewhere and won't accidentally be overwritten by someone else's.
2.) Install BitTorrent Sync on something with a hard drive to hold it. Windows box with a USB hard drive? There's a client. OSX? Client. Ubuntu box? Client. DIY FreeNAS with a RAID-1 in a small case? There's a client. Synology or QNAP box? There's a client, albeit with a little command shell necessary. Hell, those $199 Western Digital Personal Cloud drives can run it. 3.) Create those folders on everyone else's machine, e-mailing around the BT Sync folder keys. 4.) Wait for replication of everyone else's data to your drive, and vice versa - everyone will help everyone else get a copy of the data they don't have. 5.) Profit.
Literally every question answered:
How would you go about implementing such a family-oriented, distributed cloud platform? See above. What hardware? Whatever hardware you have lying around, as long as it has the storage capacity you're looking for, and can permanently stay on. A few suggestions are above, but I'm a bit of a FreeNAS guy myself, especially since you can build a half-decent one with a 2TB RAID-1 for about $400 these days. The WD Cloud Drives are about the cheapest and self-contained route to go, so they may be worth considering if you need more than 3 or 4 of them. What applications, beyond simply the preservation and sharing of family data, (grandkids' photos, home videos, and more) would be good to leverage such a platform? Security Cameras? HTPC? VoIP? Home Automation? Well this is the rather perplexing part, because on the one hand you're asking for decentralized storage, and then you ask why you'd use it (VoIP + decentralized storage?!? wtf??). If you need decentralized storage, one should safely be able to assume that that there's already a reason. Having said that, photos would be my first use case, with disaster recovery being the second - Acronis True Image supports backup to FTP/SMB locations, so as long as you can back up to one of them that way, the rest will distribute. Primary requirements are Cheap, Secure, Reliable." Cheap? BT Sync is free; you'd need storage regardless. There's 10,001 topics on Slashdot where "the most reliable form of storage" comes up. "How much do you want to spend" is inherently the question, and "Cheap" indicates "not much"...it also doesn't answer exactly how much storage you'll need. Are you undertaking a massive photo album archiving project, or capturing the last 20 years of home videos? a 2TB drive just might cut it, or not. Are you backing up everyone's laptops? 6TB, MAYBE, and single-drive solutions won't cover it anymore...but are you prepared to start forking over $600 a box, along with a weekend of your time (at least) to the cause? Are you doing a roll-your-own Netflix where everyone will add their own CD/DVD rips to the units and then let Plex Media Server work its magic?
Okay, so I lied...one of the underlying questions have been answered: how to get files to the geographically disparate places in the easiest way possible. BT Sync, at the low, low cost of 'free', resolves this. The questions regarding hardware, and how much storage you will need, and what protocols it will need to support, are wholly dependent on how much data will, in total, have to sit on each device. Answer that question, along with the follow-up of "how safe do you really, REALLY need to be?"and then you can start figuring out numbers to go along with it.
top Watch Bill Nye and Ken Ham Clash Over Creationism Live
I hope you realize that this is the main reason that creationism is not regarded as science.
If you read the initial post, I explicitly state that Creationists don't agree on a 6,000 year old earth. Whether it's considered scientific or not isn't in question here.
You start from a premise: the earth is only 6000 years old.
I start from assuming a particular premise, not necessarily that I, personally, agree with said premise.
And if any observation contradicts this premise you resort to the most fantastic and impossible explanations in order to 'salvage' your point of view.
I don't think it's necessarily any impossible that "God created light in transit", any more than it's impossible that God created the stars themselves. I'm simply avoiding limiting God to a specific method that aligns to a particular conclusion. The Biblical account of Adam's creation indicates that he was formed a fully grown man, and was of that physical maturity when he was only two days old. The conclusion that God "must" have created Adam as a newborn would have its own messy implications regarding how he managed to survive without a mother to feed him.
Additionally, there are similar questions involved with things like radioactive dating. Even without creationism in play, when I was in earth science solving word problems like "a 100g sample contains 25g of Uranium-235 and 75g of Lead-207. How old is the sample?" Well, the textbook answer is 'approximiately 1.4 billion years', since it's of the assumption that the sample started as 100g of uranium. If that sample, by sheer happenstance, started out as a 50/50 mix, then the sample is 700 million years younger and the math is only wrong because it's founded on a false assumption. Now I'm not disputing the validity of radioactive dating, but I am saying that asking the question of "a candle 15 centimeters long burns at one centimeter per hour; how long has it been burning" cannot be answered, regardless of how old the earth truly is.
A scientist cannot do that he/she has to find an explanation that matches ALL observations. And assuming somehow whole stars and planets appeared out of nowhere but in a state that suggest actually they were there for billions of years etc. is actually ignoring the observation.
It's not explainging the observation but dismissing it.
It's saying "we don't know". I bought a custom pair of Technics 1200s last year. I have a purchase receipt telling me that they're a year old. They have been retrofitted with cables that are dated from two years ago. They have Dicer controllers installed, whose manufacture initially started in 2010 (but didn't 'catch on' in the DJ scene until a year or two later). The gentleman I purchased them from said that he acquired them a year before selling them to me. Based on that information, one could technically assume that the turntables were likely manufactured in 2011 or 2010. That can't possibly be true, because Technics stopped *making* T12's in 2010! Odds are pretty good that the decks I have were originally manufactured in the mid 1990's or late 1980's; one day I'll be un-lazy enough to try to figure it out based upon the serial number or some of the other minor characteristics that would enable me to better date them. It's entirely possible the the two turntables I have are actually several years apart in age. I don't know. However, a 'scientific observation' of their initial appearance would cause a particular conclusion to be drawn that is both scientific and wrong.
We have only seen things start at the beginning. Human and animal births are an obvious example, but one can very easily point to the various nebulae where we've observed stars and planets in their very early stages of formation. I dare not suggest that, as far as we are concerned, life - organic, stellar, or otherwise - has observable stages through which it passes. However, Betelgeuse didn't 'start' its life when mankind first observed it with the naked eye. It didn't start when we gave it a name. It didn't start when we first measured its distance. It didn't start when we first saw it through a radio telescope or isolated the light spectrum it emanates. Both creationist and noncreationist views align with this fact - Betelgeuse existed before we measured it. I don't see how it is a requirement for it to have had its "childhood" or "adolescent" phases (so far as stellar life cycles are measured) to get to where it is any more than it is a hard requirement for it to have had those stages within the amount of time we have been able to assign such things to them.
top Watch Bill Nye and Ken Ham Clash Over Creationism Live
I pose that christianity throughout time has been all about the personal theist god that interacts with the world.
One can, with relative certainty, assume that God believes in Himself
:-P However, I'm of the persuasion that God can, and does, still interact with the physical world. However, that doesn't mean that God didn't set up plenty of shell scripts to run the whole thing as opposed to Him needing to recreate the sun every morning...
This view is plain to dismiss in the wake of scientific discovery - as well as the origin of man.
I think what you explain (pertaining to "an individual who believes that there is a Supreme Deity in charge of causing the universe to exist") is only a fallback position in the face of modern knowledge, where it is increasingly futile to persist with the traditional religious claims.
We agree on this one, but for presumably different reasons. See, before we had electron microscopes and the Aracebo radio telescope to better understand the cosmos, religion was essentially the only thing we had to describe a whole lot of things. Yes, scientific discoveries do enlighten how things came into existence, but it doesn't require the believe in a Creator to go away. "The Matrix" was a good movie. They had their signature "freeze time and move the camera" shot that was a thing for a while, but was relatively new when the movie came out (15 years ago...I'm legit getting old...). On the DVD release, they showed exactly how they did it - green screen, 40-or-so heavily-timed cameras, and pristine lighting placement. Just because those watching the bonus features of the DVD know how it was done, doesn't mean that the scene is any less impressive, or that we now no longer need the movie producers because we can do it ourselves (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3evWKYX0n00).
Evolution -> bye bye Adam & Eve -> bye bye bible -> bye bye christianity. It is known that man was not created, and from there everything else crumbles.
Abiogenesis would mean that. There's no Biblical issue with microevolution, or even some limited macroevolution. However, I'll fully admit that the concept of a Creator does find itself with a solid parallel to "The Conspiracy Dilemma" - if a conspiracy theorist conclusively proves the conspiracy, he's right. If they are disproven, it just means that the conspiracy goes deeper, as is the nature of held beliefs. Similarly, a Creationist world view takes scientific discoveries as methods of implementation, and how 'the Creator did it', not as evidence as the absence of a creator.
top How Adobe Got Rid of Traditional Stack-Ranking Performance Reviews
Because this could explain why the Adobe software I used in the 90s and early 2000s (e.g. Premiere) was such a crash-ridden heap of bugs.
As a Premiere user since 6.1 (and not switching from 6.5 until PPro 2.0), I too am grateful that the requirement of setting auto-save to every five minutes is, for the most part, behind us. However, as much as Adobe gets to shoulder plenty of the blame, consider the state of computers during that era...
My church bought a turnkey video editing system for about $7,000 back in 1998. It had a 733MHz P3 processor and 192MBytes of RAM. Those are essentially rounding errors by today's standards. Since IDE drives maxed out at MAYBE 20GB on the high end, and they didn't spin fast enough to capture video in real-time, we had all the fun of getting a quartet of 18.6GB SCSI drives and RAID-5'ing them for a whopping 50GB of storage space. This, of course, involving an Adaptec SCSI card and Windows 98SE, and the drivers to get the two of them to talk to each other. Since NTFS was, at the time, only supported by NT 4.0 (which, IIRC, was NOT supported by Premiere itself), that pesky 4GB file size limit kept rearing its head in the most obnoxious of situations. Rendering on that 733MHz processor was no picnic, especially if you were rendering to MPEG-2 on top of it - you'd literally be there all night waiting for a render to happen. To help with that, there were some people at Canopus, Matrox, and a few others, who made hardware acceleration cards, and those were half-awesome. By "half-awesome", I mean that machines of that vintage were able to have multiple 3D video effects on a single clip, working in real-time, on processors that ancient. The not-so-awesome part involved the fact that the hardware - and their associated plug-ins - had a tendency of crashing. A LOT. I lost countless hours to a Matrox plug-in that just decided to throw up and cause the last hour of editing to go into the trash can.
Ultimately, I'm not giving Adobe a completely free pass on not getting their act together. I will, however, give them at least some leeway based on the fact that no one
/else/ was able to make a stable video editing application on Windows 9x, either...especially when one considers that the hardware required for video editing on the PC platform at that time was a lot more exotic (and ten times more expensive) than it is now.
top Greenland's Fastest Glacier Sets New Speed Record
I'm still a bit confused on those speeds. Can someone convert them to coincide with
the viscosity of tar pitch or the rate by which bills get passed through congress?
top Watch Bill Nye and Ken Ham Clash Over Creationism Live
First off, there is a lot of confusion about what "creationists" actually believe.
If you tried believing only in what there is evidence to support there would be a lot less confusion.
How does one conclusively prove "there was a Creator", any more than one can conclusively prove "All matter existed as pure energy before the energy existed as energy"? Again, internally, creationists debate implementation and methodology, but saying that you can deduce that there was a Creator based upon following what previous iterations until you get to Creation itself...makes very little sense any more than you can take Mass Effect lore and follow its origins all the way back to a hard drive at Bioware. Yes, I am saying that there's faith involved, and I am saying that creationism doesn't, at the face value of the Genesis account, explain the existence of gravity and subatomic forces and antimatter and mathematics. However, I personally have yet to see a solid explanation to the problem of how the 'ingredients' of the Big Bang. Space is expanding, and is expanding from a central point. I can roll with this, but the only examples of those things that I've seen have been things like balloons, where the balloon can expand because it is pushing the air on the outside out of the way. Is there something outside the universe that is being pushed out of the way (what is it?) or not (so then, space is continuing to get 'created'?). From where did all the original energy come from? I've heard of the oscillating universe theory, in which case the heat death of the universe will cause the universe to once again contract into a singularity, but to me that sounds like "turtles all the way down". The 'spontaneous' transition from energy to matter-and-energy - what was its cause? Were there Newtonian/Einsteinian/Quantum physical laws that caused it? Was there 'time' when that happened? These are just a handful of questions that I've yet to find solid answers for in a model of the universe that precludes a Creator, some of which start to stretch the definition of being scientific themselves because they, by definition, are very difficult to observe, measure, or repeat.
From a Christian standpoint, we've got two parts - primary doctrine, and secondary doctrine.
See, you've got this entirely backwards here. If creation is fact, you should be able to infer the Christian doctrine from observations made in the real world. Forget about what's in the book, and just look at the world. Do your observations lead you to the same conclusion the book does?
Pursuant to the list of assorted questions above, the answer is 'no, because we haven't gotten that far scientifically yet'. Again, it's like saying that if you traced the source code of Mass Effect back far enough, you could come up with the concepts to the scripts, hand-drawn artboards, and casting meetings for the audio recordings. My observations bring me to the point of saying, "yes, God used systems. God works in systems. There are observable correlations between how things work, mathematically quantifiable laws that define how the physical universe interacts with itself, and an order that regulates it all." I've got no problem discussing or debating the implementation; I read one particularly interesting piece that interpreted the first three days of Creation as God performing creation at a subatomic level, which was particularly fascinating. However, every science textbook, journal article, and non-elitist blog post I've read on the topic all lead me back to those questions above (and others) still leave those questions lingering, and thus, the concept of a Creator has not yet been nullified, at least for me.
Everything else, regarding God's implementation, and the methods He used to actually perform the act of creation...that's secondary doctrine, and in any room of ten creationists, you'll have a dozen answers.
That's because they're all making it up. If you ask a room of biologists about the actual method by which speciation occured, you'll get one answer. Evolution by natural selection. That's because that's where the evidence actually leads.
You can call it that if you'd like, because figuring out exactly
/how/ God did it, the nuts and bolts of it, isn't the ultimate goal. Suppose the Bible spent the entire time describing, in explicit, complex detail, exactly how God created the universe - the entire book, focused solely on explaining the Creation process. Trust me, I think that would be cool. I'd be rather interested in getting a better idea as to exactly how God created time and how He decided how many galaxies there would be, and whether He created other lifeforms in some distant galaxy that we will never meet. As much as I think that that would be awesome, speaking about Christianity specifically, the point of the Bible isn't for God to explain everything in the textbook sense, it's intended to lead us to Him. Yes, cue the written-by-a-bunch-of-guys-in-Rome-who-Xeroxed-a-dozen-other-cultures'-religions friends, and for all I know, they're right, and the only guy who had it right was someone in Aboriginal Australia 800 years ago named Phil who got bit by a snake before he got a chance to write it down. I'm not giving an altar call here, but what I am trying to say is that Genesis 1:1 is the important part. It is somewhat-better elaborated upon in the following verses, but from my perspective, the implementation is of secondary importance to the Implementor. Herein lies our impasse.
top Watch Bill Nye and Ken Ham Clash Over Creationism Live
A few answers here, starting with the foundational ones...
First off, there is a lot of confusion about what "creationists" actually believe. We have our fundies like everybody else, but the fact of the matter is that even the more rational creationists will disagree about creationism. From a Christian standpoint, we've got two parts - primary doctrine, and secondary doctrine. Genesis 1:1 is primary doctrine: "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth". This is agreed upon by basically everyone in the creationist camp - that everything in the known universe was created by God.
Everything else, regarding God's implementation, and the methods He used to actually perform the act of creation...that's secondary doctrine, and in any room of ten creationists, you'll have a dozen answers. This is an important distinction to make, because, if I may get on my soapbox for a quick moment, Slashdot seems to correlate "creationist" with "6000 years, fossils-meant-to-test-us, God gives 'Murica the right to bear arms" fundies, as opposed to "an individual who believes that there is a Supreme Deity in charge of causing the universe to exist". Simply because Biblical creationists don't have every single answer regarding God's implementation as to how He constructed the universe, and because we don't all 100% agree on the possible ways that God could have done it...doesn't mean that everyone who believes Genesis 1:1 is a completely irrational fundie...okay I'll get back off my soap box and actually get on with answering the question...
Biblical creationism based on Genesis 1 leaves a few avenues of possibility. First, the word "day" is frequently pointed to as being suspect in the first, second, and third "days" of the creation account...because the earth didn't exist until the fourth day. The argument that the term 'day' is not a literal 24 hour period is substantiated by the fact that the original Hebrew language used for the first day doesn't use the term "first day", but "day one", indicating that it was not compared to the other days in those terms. It's entirely possible that the first three days were entirely different units of time. Additional questions raised in this regard is the fact that the Bible repeatedly refers to God as an Entity that is not bound by time, and thus time itself being a creation...yet 'time' is not listed as one of the things that God created, nor gravity, magnetism, or the forces of Newtonian physics, or quantum physics. Since we understand that all of these laws manipulate time given sufficient amounts of these forces, there's plenty of reasons to believe that the notion of a 'day' was not a 24 hour period. Those on the 6-literal-day side of the debate point to the fact that the word 'day', even in the Hebrew, is used solely for the 24-hour time span, and never for an 'age' or any other indiscriminate span of time, so the authors of the Bible could have used the word 'age' if so directed by God, but did not. Whether human error, 'poetic license', or because God builds universes in a week...is amongst the points of secondary doctrine about which Ken Ham and Kent Hovind have gone back and forth about repeatedly.
With regards to the question about the ~6,000 light-year range of light we'd expect to see, the best answers I can personally give is two fold:
1. If we're assuming that 24 hour days are correct, then one could argue that it's no more difficult for God to make photons-in-transit from stars than it would be for Him to create the stars themselves. For bonus points, consider that 'light' was the very first thing created. To answer the question of "why would He do that", all I can say is "I'm trying to figure out the whole lice thing myself..." 2. If we're assuming 6 'ages' of significant time, then one could argue that there would be plenty of time between the formation of the stars and the creation of mankind, so the light-in-transit could easily have a few million year head start to work with.
The "why" is still my personal speculation, but I have a slightly better answer for this one: suppose, for a moment, that the short-day people are right, and assume that we could, somehow, prove beyond any conceivable doubt, that the universe is 6,000 years old. Is it any less exquisite? Are the details any less beautiful? Do those deep space images from Hubble that show individual galaxies as dots give any less sense of scale? Does it somehow rescind questions like "what would it actually feel like to fly a spaceship into a black hole?" Remember, God may know all the answers to those questions, but just because He's not bound by the universe doesn't mean that He doesn't enjoy it, any more than a Bioware programmer would be unable to enjoy playing Mass Effect. Now, of course, whether you want to attribute the answers to those questions to a Divine Architect is up to you.
top Facebook Is a Plague That'll Burn Out In a Few Years, Says Study
A key problem for Facebook: they don't have a phone.
I beg to differ. This was tried at least twice that I'm aware of, once with the HTC Status (it had a dedicated Facebook button and a hardware keyboard; the Salsa was the touch-only variant), and again with the HTC First. Both of these phones failed. HARD.
Facebook doesn't need a phone, because choosing the Facebook phone means not having the latest Galaxy unit or the latest iPhone. I would dare attribute a part of Facebook's earlier success to the fact that they didn't have a phone...but they made it a point to be EVERYWHERE. It was possible to text a status from a dumbphone. They've had amongst the best mobile sites for a very long time. They integrated with Windows Mobile 6.5. They have apps for WP7, WP8, W8. They have Blackberry apps, both old-style and new-style, and they of course have iOS and Android flavors...and, again, a well-designed mobile browser interface.On Android specifically, they ask for literally every permission available (except root, I believe), so they can spy on users just as efficiently as Google can.
It's foolish to compete with the other vendors, when you can simply ensure that you're present on their devices. Remember the immortal adage: if you can't beat 'em, join 'em.
about a month and a half ago
top Canadian Music Industry Calls For Internet Regulation, Website Blocking
...but I thought that the Canadian RIAA had a tax tacked onto blank storage media that was supposed to help pay for the pirated tracks. Did that disappear?
about a month and a half ago
top GPUs Dropping Dead In 2011 MacBook Pro Models
Is heat a factor? If so, Apple should be able to tweak the cooling thresholds with a firmware update.
I'm not an engineer, but I don't think that that's going to truly solve the problem at this point.
Even if Apple did this tomorrow, you still have GPUs with over two years of heat wear involved. Similarly, depending on the situation, maxing out the fans at the first sign of a Youtube video may be nice and all, but depending on the situation, the solution would be to ratchet down the clock speed of the GPU, which will NOT make happy campers out of the people who want that GPU to run at full speed during render/transcode/gaming operations.
I would concur that Apple should do this in addition to replacing the affected GPUs (so that they have a fresh start), but in lieu of it seems to only be asking for trouble down the road.
about a month and a half ago