top Roku Finally Adds YouTube To Its Iconic Media Player
Agreed. DLNA is what I want; a Roku equipped with that would be pretty much the last piece of media hardware I'd need to buy.
top Windows Blue Is Officially Windows 8.1, Free For Existing Users
Made me think of the Mitch Hedburg one-liner. "I used to do drugs. I *still* do, but I used to, too."
Windows Blue. It *still* blows, but it blue, too. about a year and a half ago
top Iranian Military Says It's Copying US Drone
I like your ideas, AC, and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
top 12 Ways LibreOffice Writer Tops MS Word
I don't mind the ribbon much one way or the other - but I still find myself getting more use out of an extensively customized Quick Access Toolbar than out of the ribbon itself.
top 12 Ways LibreOffice Writer Tops MS Word
Word could be improved for some hardcore uses by getting rid of every last vestige of non-Unicode compliant font usage propagated in the name of backward-compatibility. And make all codepoint usage uniformly hexadecimal and accommodate double-byte codepoints in VBA, and stop trating Symbol font so weirdly. Harumph.
If LibreOffice gave me the power and flexibility to deal with Unicode properly, I'd jump on it for at home. At work,... always gonna be stuck with Word.
top 10 Years of Windows XP
I work at a very large global company (a big pharma), and we're still ninety-some % on XP SP3 for workstations, to the degree that, for one system I support, the vendor came to me with the problem of not having been able to purchase a workstation with anything but Win7 on it, and no longer being able to legally purchase any kind of XP license even to do a downgrade (not sure of all the details, or if this was really an absolute), but needing to get an instance of the system up and running. We ended up having our IT do the XP install with our volume license, on a vendor-supplied, yet-another-third-party-vendor workstation, to support the first vendor's software and interfaced hardware.
It's getting a little contorted out here, and yes, in this case it is because this FDA-regulated company steers like a cow. Technically, we could install Win7, but corporately, we haven't approved a version of our chosen antivirus package yet to run on 7, and so we'd have to either break our corporate guidance and just use Win7's AV, or find another way around the issue. When this particular vendor starts supplying hardware that flat-out won't support an XP install (and this system uses 64-bit), then we'll have a slightly more severe problem.
top Leonardo DiCaprio To Play Alan Turing?
I came to this discussion fully expecting to see some mention of Wil Wheaton, and am a bit surprised that there apparently hasn't been one so far. Not that I have much of a feeling one way or the other as to whether he'd be valid to play the role.
/read the Turing bio
//haven't seen Wheaton in many things
top Ask Slashdot: How to Exploit Post-Cataract Ultraviolet Vision?
Came to make sure someone said, leaving satisfied.
top AA batteries of any kind in my residence:
Go ask at BatteriesPlus about their recycling of alkaline AAs. They actually charge you to take alkaline AAs (any alkalines, I guess) for recycling, because recycling alkaline batteries is basically a waste of effort. I resisted that idea for a long time (which is why I answered "more than 100" to this survey, which includes hundreds of dead AAs accumulated over 12 years of running a portable DAT recorder), but since bugging BatteriesPlus about it a few times and studying elsewhere,... (there are bins at my workplace - an environmentally-conscious Big Pharma - for recycling specifically NON-alkalines, and I've queried some of the environmental engineers about those, and been told to not put alkalines in those bins, because somebody ends up having to sort the damn things out),... I've finally given in and started tossing the ancient dead things out a handful at a time, though also scouting around for a place that would dispose of them in a known clean manner.
top Hospital Wireless Networks May Be Regulated Medical Devices
Absolutely true. I'm in IT at a Big Pharma, and I've seen plenty of those exact kinds of issues during regression testing - patches "breaking" little loopholes in Windows behavior that we'd unwisely come to depend on in some obscure cases. That XP SP2-to-SP3 upgrade buggers up DCOM, for example.
top Feeling Upset? Look At Some Meat
Came for the inevitable pr0n/"I'm thinking Arby's!" post, leaving somewhat satisfied and somewhat,... distracted.
top Miniature Human Livers Grown In Lab
Came here for the "did they also grow some miniature fava beans and miniature chiantis?" question,.... leaving happy.
top I am employee number ...
top Volkswagen Creates Sewage-Powered Beetle
I heard Toyota and Chevrolet had partnered on an attempt to achieve this same design. They were gonna call it the Toyolet.
To improve mileage, all you needed to do was put a brick in the tank.
The first prototypes were kinda cheap, though - the seats had two positions: up and down.
top BlindType — the Amazing Keyboard of the Future
Agreeing with the Model M comment.
Also: obligatory one-handed typing joke, taken as read.
Also, less facetiously, I wonder how well it accommodates switching scripts/Unicode ranges or special typing for codepoints. (Haven't yet rtfa.)
top Toyota Sudden Acceleration Is Driver Error
I was thinking about that myself; I imagine ID10-T as the whole class of errors, and the PICNIC, PEBKAC and all others as specific examples (though so many of them are redundant).
top Toyota Sudden Acceleration Is Driver Error
Proposing a new lUser acronym:
PIDSNIT - Problem In Driver's Seat, Not In Throttle.
top Font Foundries Opening Up To the Web
My company would find it worth the money (if I and a few others could convince them to, and if the affected users could actually be corralled to install and use it consistently, and nevermind the internal stresses between the graphic designers vs. marketing vs. regulatory agencies vs. the ridiculous turnover in parties responsible for copy) to buy a couple fonts that include every damn Unicode codepage that we'd reasonably need to use. Right now, the only one I've found easily available (and I'm not a deep expert in this, but am learning) is Microsoft's Arial Unicode MS, which is sans serif, and we'd kinda like a serif'd one, too. There are a few other nice ones that include a fair selection of codepages, but it seems that they still manage to leave out one or more that we actually find critical, so we can't pull all locations in line.
(The application here is packaging materials for pharma, and I support this department and these processes in an organization with printing needs in at least 30-some countries.)
(Also, could care less about eliminating Comic Sans, but Microsoft's Symbol font can go jump off a bridge; it's buried so deeply, treated so weirdly, and is so thoroughly Unicode non-compliant that it manages to sneak in and bugger up documents at almost every stage in our development processes. I'd like to slap the person responsible.)
top Anti-Cancer Agent Stops Metastasis In Its Tracks
Unicode-compliant font and codepoint 0x00E6. FTW. (Maybe pasted in from Word or something,...)
top Startup Tests Drugs Aimed at Autism
I work at a Big Pharma, and I was going to make the same comment as the one to which you're replying. $750M to $1000M is much more realistic a range for the cost to bring a NEW API to market. (API = active pharmaceutical ingredient)
This cost is the end result of high, demanding standards for quality, safety, documentation and a zillion other details governed by the FDA. If you want to know why FDA-approved drugs cost so much more than "dietary supplements" and all the other alterna-crap, it's because the producers of those things aren't required to prove:
that they work;
that they have a consistent strength/dosage across production lots;
that they aren't adulterated with uncontrolled substances not related to the API;
that they are safe.
FDA-governed pharmas are required to show all those things, and to a degree far past the diminishing returns of effort that you'd find if we were required to meet *only* a 99% consistent result, and that's only at the point where real production is underway.
Final-phase clinical trials are expensive enough, requiring as they do statistically significant cohort sizes, medical professionals to run them, teams of doctors and statisticians to understand and interpret the results and a huge infrastructure to supply the API in the relatively tiny CT quantities, built despite the significant risk that it could all amount to nothing even having gotten through all the earlier stages of development.
Earlier phase testing isn't qualitatively much different, though there are some interesting expenses that most lay-trolls don't know about, like animals used for various types of studies. Since you have to study under laboratory conditions, you have to buy animals bred explicitly for the purpose. A single monkey can cost $50,000 just to purchase, and again, you need a statistically significant number of them to run a study.
But it's so much easier to dismiss the complexity and difficulty of the effort and to presume that no one involved in the process is doing any sort of earnest job and just say it's all bullshit and greed.
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