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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

WillAdams This is one of the reasons I like a Tablet PC (563 comments)

It's really convenient to rotate the display on a pen slate (or convertible in slate mode) as appropriate to suit the sort of work / activity one is doing at a given moment.

about a week ago

AI Expert: AI Won't Exterminate Us -- It Will Empower Us

WillAdams It will empower the people who own/direct it (414 comments)

the people who are paying for the development and paying the power bills. Everyone else will be viewed as just a resource to be exploited.

Fictional take on this --- Marshall Brain's novella _Manna_ --- available free on-line: http://marshallbrain.com/manna...

The first half seems all-too-likely, the second, likely impossible.

about a week ago

Microsoft's New Windows Monetization Methods Could Mean 'Subscriptions'

WillAdams Re:I'm sorry (415 comments)

You do realize that Windows 7's mainstream support will end 13 January 2015, and extended support on 14 January 2020?


about a week ago

Forbes Revisits the Surface Pro 3, Which May Face LG Competition

WillAdams I'd like to buy one (101 comments)

I've been a big believer in pen computing since reading Niven & Pournelle's _The Mote in God's Eye_ and using a Koala Pad graphics tablet attached to a Commodore 64 in high school.

Reasons I prefer tablets w/ a stylus:

  - drawing
  - note-taking
  - annotation
  - more efficient usage of some programs, esp. those which can be configured w/ pie menus or menu structures which can become gestural (Punch in Altsys Virtuoso was a gesture for me on my Wacom ArtZ graphics tablet attached to my NeXT Cube)
  - lighter weight / smaller --- currently trying to ``upgrade'' to a ThinkPad x61 Tablet (convertible) from a Fujitsu Stylistic ST-4121 slate and the former won't fit in my old laptop bag.

Almost bought an Asus Vivotab Note 8, and would've bought the Microsoft Surface 2 from sales this past weekend, but didn't. Concerns I had:

  - poor build quality for the Asus --- there's a DIY fix posted for the digitizer ceasing to work
  - standard LCD, not daylight viewable
  - the Surface 2 which was on sale was the RT model, so can't run Macromedia Freehand --- the Pro 2 was out-of-stock

I'd be sleeping on the couch tonight if someone would make a pen slate which:

  - ran either Mac OS X or Windows --- or if there was a drawing program for Android as nice as Macromedia Freehand
  - was a pen slate w/ a Wacom digitizer
  - had a daylight-viewable display (transflective LCD or better) --- I use my machine as a map reader when traveling and to control my CNC mill on the back porch
  - had a resolution higher than 1024 x 768 and was not much larger than a letter-sized notepad

about two weeks ago

A Worm's Mind In a Lego Body

WillAdams Re:Memory mapping? (200 comments)

More importantly, the Bible tells those who believe in it that nothing is unknowable: Genesis 11:6

>The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language
>they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do
>will be impossible for them.

So it's blasphemous for Christians (or Jews or Muslims) to say that humanity can't understand such things (or anything).

about 1 month ago

We Are Running Out of Sand

WillAdams Re:Beach (264 comments)

The problem is, you can't have a shoreline which is all cove --- look at North Carolina's Outer Banks --- Waves/Rodanthe/Salvo lose sand, while it builds up at the tail end down past Hatteras.

about a month and a half ago

Cutting the Cord? Time Warner Loses 184,000 TV Subscribers In One Quarter

WillAdams Re:They tried to raise prices 20% unnanounced (392 comments)

Getting over-the-air TV isn't as easy as it used/ought to be.

When all the stations went digital they also reduced their transmission power, so I went from being able to receive in my basement to getting no signal for the local PBS affiliate.

Had to run a cable from the basement to the living room and build a special-purpose digital TV antenna in order to be able to receive a signal again: http://cachefly.oreilly.com/ma...

(I'm pretty sure PBS had the plans originally, but I can't find the link)

about a month and a half ago

Ballmer Says Amazon Isn't a "Real Business"

WillAdams Re:Balmer is a smart man. (283 comments)

Actually, there was an early ebook reader, predating the Kindle, which Amazon supported and then discontinued.

about 1 month ago

Apple 1 Sells At Auction For $905,000

WillAdams Re:Hindsight (81 comments)

Or upgraded them to Apple IIs.

about 2 months ago

Flight Attendants Want Stricter Gadget Rules Reinstated

WillAdams Safer to have dense, aerodynamic objects stowed (406 comments)

There have already been a couple of instances of children being injured in car accidents --- what will be the rate of injury in an airliner crash?

about 2 months ago

HP Introduces Sub-$100 Windows Tablet

WillAdams Daylight viewable display? (182 comments)

I spent too much time fiddling w/ a passive stylus on a Fujitsu Point PT-510 --- not that interested in repeating it, but if it had a daylight viewable display so that it could:

  - function as a map reader when travelling
  - work as a controller for my CNC machine when using it outside (as good as the dust collection is, Ipê gets cut outside)

But I'm not seeing any machines w/ daylight viewable displays available for less than several grand....

about 3 months ago

Drones Reveal Widespread Tax Evasion In Argentina

WillAdams Re:Just what we need. More compliance! (208 comments)

The township has a certain set of fixed costs which it has to meet every year.

Taxes are set so as to raise that amount, apportioned as decided by the lawmakers and voters.

People who fail to pay on unreported improvements aren't adhering to the agreed-upon social contract, placing a larger requirement for payments/burden on those who are.

If you don't like the taxes in an area, move, or participate in your local government to get things changed.

about 3 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Any Place For Liberal Arts Degrees In Tech?

WillAdams One of the best programmers I've known had a BA (392 comments)

in Philosophy.

He'd written everything from operating systems to end-user applications and had a well-thumbed first printing of Knuth's TAOCP: Vol. 1 and was the person I brought my royalty check (for finding an error and a point of improvement in _Digital Typography_) in to work to show.

about 3 months ago

Direct Sales OK Baked Into Nevada's $1.3 Billion Incentive Deal With Tesla

WillAdams Re:I never liked those state/city incentives (149 comments)

Now, now, you can't go criticizing sports teams when the N.F.L. is a non-profit organization which exists for the good of the game and to enhance the beneficial effects which the game has on society, right? I'm sure the goals of the other sports organizations are as noble and that their bookkeeping is similarly transparent.

I'm sure that it's some bizarre, pestilential outside influence which has banned community ownership of teams (save for the grand-fathered-in Greenbay Packers) and required that a minimum percentage of a team be owned by a single individual.

about 3 months ago



Trimble Software follows Adobe's subscription-only licensing lead

WillAdams WillAdams writes  |  about a year and a half ago

WillAdams (45638) writes "From the license for the new SketchUp Make (which replaces Google's free version and complements the paid version) Trimble Navigation Limited ... gives you a ... license to use the ... Software for non-commercial use only. Non-commercial use means: you may not sell, rent, lease or lend the output of the Software or the Services. If you are ... engaged in commercial activity; therefore, in order to use the Software and Services, you must purchase a SketchUp Pro license. In addition to the basic $495 licensing fee, one must pay an annual $95 fee for maintenance & support."

Elon Musk wants to send 80,000 people to live on Mars

WillAdams WillAdams writes  |  about 2 years ago

WillAdams (45638) writes "SpaceX founder Elon Musk wants to create a colony on Mars consisting of a population of 80,000, ferried to the planet in a reusable rocket. For the initial trip, the rocket would contain fewer than 10 humans, and enough equipment to found a colony ready for the other 79,990."
Link to Original Source

MLA updates references, web default, but no URL

WillAdams WillAdams writes  |  more than 5 years ago

WillAdams writes "Inside Higher Ed as reported the new seventh edition of the _MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers_ makes web references the default, but doesn't require a URL, operating under the assumption that readers will be able to find the referenced work using a search engine http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2009/03/11/mla — an assumption which doesn't take into consideration Google bombs &c. Ars discusses it here: http://arstechnica.com/media/news/2009/04/sign-of-the-times-print-no-longer-default-mla-citation-style.ars"
Link to Original Source


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