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Mobile Phone Use Patterns Identify Individuals Better Than Fingerprints

WebManWalking One group that defies their tracking analysis (88 comments)

In a recent Slashdot poll, 7% of all respondents didn't have a mobile phone. I'm one of them.

Not having a mobile phone doesn't mean you're paranoid about privacy. It could just as easily mean that you're waiting for the technology to mature. I notice that everyone seems to hate something: hardware quality, hardware cost, no signal, dropped calls, awful sound quality, basic service cost, roaming charges, long term contracts, etc. The list of complaints goes on and on.

Why do you guys put up with that crap? They never address the basic problems. They dangle flashy new features in front of you, you eagerly gobble them up and then gradually you realize that you still have the same old litany of problems hobbling your new gadget.

Vote with your money. Use land lines till they solve the fundamentally flawed user experience. In the meantime, you don't have to worry about your phone use identifying you better than fingerprints.

about a year and a half ago
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Neil deGrasse Tyson On How To Stop a Meteor Hitting the Earth

WebManWalking "feel" each other's gravity? "want to"? (520 comments)

Neil, I realize there's a need to dumb things down sometimes, but you're going to provoke suggestions that we criticize the asteroid's weight so that it'll run away crying.

Here's a more useful idea: Use asteroids to improve our situation on Earth. Deflect otherwise-colliding asteroids to pass by us in front of our orbit, not behind us. Let gravitational pull add to our speed around the sun. Let it add to our rotational speed. We need a higher orbit around the sun and less baking when we're facing the sun. I realize the relative masses assure that it won't noticeably help. But it would help more than deluding folks who don't know any better than to believe that asteroids have emotions.

about a year and a half ago
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'Download This Gun' — 3-D Printed Gun Reliable Up To 600 Rounds

WebManWalking Re: ...escape (582 comments)

I'm sure there's somewhere with pina coladas, and getting caught in the rain.

about a year and a half ago
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Facebook Hacks Points To Much Bigger Threat For Mobile Developers

WebManWalking Re:WHAT FUCKING SITE?!?!? (59 comments)

Astroturfing was the word that occurred to me too. I almost submitted it as a tag, in fact. Or maybe slashvertizement (however that's spelled).

It's like those news website articles with misleading title (or question as title) hotlinks to entice you to visit the article. The more page hits, the more advertizing sold. Only in this case, they're trying to generate hits on F-Secure's website. If that's your intent, you cannot give away information up front. It would defeat the purpose.

I suppose it helps to get angry at them (if they hear about your anger somehow). It lets them know that their teasing technique isn't building the sort of goodwill that could result in a customer, at least not in those who see through it.

about 2 years ago
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Facebook Hacks Points To Much Bigger Threat For Mobile Developers

WebManWalking Re:Yes (59 comments)

I develop in Java, but I don't have applets enabled in my general web browsing.

OMG. Are you saying that there are developers who use only one browser for everything?

about 2 years ago
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UK Apple Shop Forced To Change Its Name

WebManWalking Similar problem, also in the UK (174 comments)

Tech blogger, tech conference speaker and JS Bin developer Remy Sharp has a Twitter handle that made lots of people think that he was the band R.E.M. When the band disbanded, he got tons of tweets, so many that it was excruciating wading through them all for tweets that were actually intended for him. But he didn't give up his Twitter handle.

You don't HAVE to capitulate to mass misunderstandings.

about 2 years ago
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Humans Have Been Eating Cheese For At Least 7,500 Years

WebManWalking Re:Obvious geek question, answered (214 comments)

It was prophesied somewhere in the first 6 books of the Aeneid that Aeneas and his men would someday be so hungry, they would eat their plates.

Somewhere in the second 6 books, there came a time, after a battle or something, when they had broken all their dinnerware. Someone had the idea to flatten out some dough, put the food on top of it and cook them all together, baking the bread and cooking the food at the same time. While they were eating, Aeneas' son Iulus said hey look everybody, we're eating our plates! Most thought it was just a joke and laughed, but the elders didn't laugh. They were amazed and recognized it as the fulfillment of prophesy made before Iulus was born.

So when you're in Italy and you hear of some restaurant claiming to have invented pizza in medieval times, be sure to ask them, really? How was it that Virgil was able to discuss something that your restaurant hadn't invented yet? Or something similarly snarky.

about 2 years ago
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Text Message Spammer Wants FCC To Declare Spam Filters Illegal

WebManWalking US Law (338 comments)

US Constitutional law includes the 9th amendment. Simplified, it means that a right doesn't have to be explicitly granted in the Constitution. It's not an exclusive list of all of our rights. A vivid example is the right to self-defense. It's not explicitly granted. That doesn't mean that we don't have that right.

But more importantly, the Constitution limits the actions of the government, not the actions of the people. The laws passed by the Legislative Branch are what limit the actions of the people. Although the government can't restrict political speech, we can. If I don't want to hear anything from ccAdvertising, political or not, I can block it all. The First Amendment doesn't restrict me from censoring anything and everything from them. I'm not the government, I'm the people.

Last but not least, the Constitution doesn't prohibit ccAdvertising from threatening to hold their breath till they turn blue, or from stomping their collective foot, glaring at all of us and saying "We'll get you for this" in harsh tones. Go ahead. Do that all you want. I'll even go so far as to say, I hope it makes you feel better, that the people you've offended and alienated with spam don't like you.

about 2 years ago
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Four Cups of Coffee A Day Cuts Risk of Oral Cancer

WebManWalking Me too (151 comments)

Did you wonder, as I did, whether 8 or more cups resulted in a whopping 74% reduction? And how much whopping do we have to do?

about 2 years ago
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No More "Asperger's Syndrome"

WebManWalking Re:Ass boogers (602 comments)

So what are we supposed to eat instead? Cobra burgers?

about 2 years ago
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Rise of the Online Code Schools

WebManWalking WebPlatform (98 comments)

http://www.webplatform.org/ is an open source online code school for HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, SVG, new web APIs, etc. Some of the brightest minds and most engaging speakers at coder conferences are contributing to it. (Example: Lea Verou for CSS.)

It was only just recently created (October 8th), so it's pretty rudimentary at this point. They characterize it as being in alpha. But have a look-see. If you code or want to code for the web, it's well worth bookmarking and checking back from time to time. And if you really know the subject matter, it's a good place to contribute.

about 2 years ago
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World Governments Object To New gTLDs

WebManWalking A comment about list itself (135 comments)

If you go to the list at https://gacweb.icann.org/display/gacweb/GAC+Early+Warnings , you'll see a jumbled hodgepodge of requested TLDs, impossible to find anything (except exact matches with Find-within-page). I immediately wished that the list were sortable.

Turns out, it is. The column headers are hotlinks that trigger sorts on the associated column. It's just not at all obvious that that's the case, because they've suppressed almost all standard hotlink cues. The hotlinks are bold, black and centered, standard highlighting for the TH tags that they also are. Nothing but the index finger pointer indicates that the headers are hot. They also didn't provide any commentary that it was sortable, either in title tooltips or in introductory verbiage. Very cool and minimalist, but not in a good way.

In other words, the table sort feature is inaccessible, even to sighted readers, because it denies the reader the information that it's sortable. It might as well not be sortable at all if you don't let the user know.

Anyway, if you want to get a clearer view of the competition for TLDs, you might want to sort by Application (the TLD itself), Applicant or Filing GAC Member. YW.

about 2 years ago
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Do Recreational Drugs Help Programmers?

WebManWalking Re:Real experience here. (878 comments)

Once upon a time, in college, I forgot I had an evening computer sciences test. I forgot because it was unusual, not because I had been smoking. So thinking my night was free, I got majorly stoned on weed (the end of my work day, so to speak). Then all of a sudden, at the last minute, I remembered I had the test. Living just off campus, I walked to the test site, which was in an auditorium. I arrived about 5 - 10 minutes late. There were about 100 other students there who had already begun the test. I got my copy of the questions, sat down and began.

Then a very strange thing happened.

As I read the questions, before reaching end-of-sentence, the answers formed in my mind and presented themselves to me VISUALLY as colorful 3-dimensional block letters that hovered over the test page. They kind-of bounced and danced and floated. Very amusing. The answers couldn't have come to me any way other than from my own memory and problem-solving skills, so it wasn't cheating or anything. It was just an amazingly awesome way to remember and code.

I THOROUGHLY enjoyed taking that test. I zipped through it with ease, answering every question even faster than I could read it. Despite having arrived so late, when I went up to turn in my answers, I was only the second person in the auditorium to have finished.

I missed only 2 questions, and they were highly debatable. The way the questions were worded, someone who actually understood the material would answer a different way from the officially-correct answer. But as a mathematics and computer-sciences major, I was used to that sort of thing. Didn't bother me much. I got the highest score of anyone taking the test, and an A.

When I first told a stoner friend of that experience, he said "Gee, I wonder what the guy who finished before you was on."

I was VERY surprised to see this topic on Slashdot. I had no idea that others had noticed that marijuana could so positively enhance puzzle-solving. (Let's be honest, that's what math and computer programming are all about.) I just thought I had an idiosyncratic response.

Oh well, here's hoping there's more research, and that weed isn't reclassified as a performance-enhancing drug. I'd hate to have to hand back all my tour-de-force wins. :-)

about 2 years ago
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Do Recreational Drugs Help Programmers?

WebManWalking Re:Caffine (878 comments)

Programmer, n., device for turning caffeine into code.

about 2 years ago

Submissions

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Jon Stewart Exposes Apple Stock Manipulation

WebManWalking WebManWalking writes  |  more than 5 years ago

WebManWalking (1225366) writes "AppleInsider is running a report by Prince McLean about how deliberate misinformation is being used to manipulate Apple stock prices. As usual, traditional journalists, whose job ought to be to inform us, have dropped the ball, and it fell to Jon Stewart of The Daily Show to tear Wall Street yet another new one. I'm getting pretty sick of traditional journalists' reluctance to go for the throat when they see corruption, and ostensibly hide behind the skirts of fairness. Looks more like cowardice to me. I don't own Apple stock, but if I did, I'd be thanking The Daily Show."
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