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Comments

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HP To Charge For Service Packs and Firmware For Out-of-Warranty Customers

alanshot So long HP... (385 comments)

Well, I guess I wont be including HP in any of my server bids moving forward. I despise Cisco for crap like this and will only use them when I absolutely must.

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

Unfortunately, no law has ever stopped a crime. EVER. Laws are there to punish you after the fact, not prevent the crime.

I assume you drive. Its against the law to drive above the posted speed limit, but odds are you still do to some extent. We all do.

Schools are already gun free zones so guns are not allowed by force of law. We have a law yet there have been HOW many school shootings? Oh, yeah. Lots. One yesterday even.

You cannot, with a straight face, tell me that you think that making theaters also a gun free zone will actually prevent gun violence inside of a theater. It wont. And we already have laws on the books like assault with a deadly weapon, murder, etc to punish those that commit violent crimes with guns. So you are saying they are going to carry a gun into this GFZ ignoring asault and murder laws, but one more law that says "you cant carry it here" is going to make them say "Oooh. wait. this here sign says I cant come in with a gun. I have to turn around and go home."?

Sorry, but we already have enough laws. One more isnt going to help.

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

Oh, to clarify, in Ohio it must be a specific, official govt provided sign (with the actual law number), posted in a specific place (at a certain height next to EVERY entrance, etc) for it to be in force. It cant be just some stenciled letters or a "no weapons" sign you bought at an office supply store.

The same for Alabama as I recall.

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

IANAL But at least in Indiana, no. simply breaking a rule like that is not grounds for immediate arrest. They may call the cops on you to have THEM tell you to leave, but the cops will absolutely NOT arrest you on the spot just for breaking a private rule. They will approach you, and during the interaction tell you that you are no longer welcome and if you dont leave immediately are subject to arrest.

I think if the owner REALLY pushes they can file a no trespass order on the spot, but that only prevents you from EVER coming back. Only if you refuse to leave or come back can you be subject to arrest.

In some states like Ohio, its codified in law that if the sign says no, you are subject to arrest. Indiana and Florida are not like that.

Good question though!

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

preventing someone else from killing you?

Bleach, in large amounts, will kill you if ingested undilluted. Bleach, in minute amounts will kill things in water that would otherwise kill you.

Should we outlaw bleach too? It kills.

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

He clearly was not carrying legally.... The movie theater has a no weapons permitted policy.

Close but no cigar...

In Florida, "no weapons" signs do not carry the weight of law. While he may have broken private property RULES he did not violate LAW.

Now if he was found ahead of time with a gun by staff and asked to leave (the most they can do) THEN he would be guilty of criminal trespass.

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

The outcome of widely available firearms is more innocent people dying.

reminds me of a post I made elsewhere about making guns illegal would make us safer:

I’ll start by asking a simple question. If you could push a button to save a loved one’s life if it meant 1,382 anonymous strangers had to sacrifice theirs in exchange, would you push it? While this is a bit of a long read, I think its worth it to stick around until the end...

Given all the “for the children” rhetoric about saving lives through more gun control legislation, I think it’s time to play a game; A numbers game. For fun, we’ll even use the numbers that those against guns claim is more realistic than what the pro-gun crowd tends to use.
According to a VERY liberal anti-gun publication, during the time period 2007-2011 there were “only” 338,700 uses of guns for self-defense.
Let’s break this down using the anti-gunner’s own stats and best case scenarios:

Over a 5 year period, that’s 67,740 times per year that a gun is used for self-defense. Not insignificant at all.

Now let’s assume that 90% of the time , the perp is only going to use his weapon for intimidation, and has no intention of killing you if you comply. Now we are down to “only” 6,774 shootings/stabbings/beatings per year, also assuming we are ALL good sheeple and comply with the thug’s demands with zero resistance.

Using the accepted conservative estimate of 22% mortality rate for shootings/stabbings, we are now talking “ONLY” 1,490 dead bodies per year.

So lets look at that “If we could only save one child, [gun bans] would be worth it!” quote now that we have some VERY conservative numbers that anti gunners can agree with. Even lumping in the adults, in the period of 1 year after Sandy Hook (but not including) there were 23 mass shootings (4 or more killed in a single incident, regardless of location) resulting in 108 casualties.

***
Assuming that we were able to stop each and every one of those mass shootings with gun control laws, THERE WOULD STILL BE 1,382 DEAD BODIES REGARDLESS OF THE “COMMON SENSE GUN BAN”. I would call this cutting off your nose to spite your face, etc.
***

But wont banning guns get rid of them all? Well, if you are willing to commit a crime with a gun, do you care about obtaining or possessing it legally? No. The only people impacted by restrictive gun laws are the “good guys”. Just ask the felons behind bars. They freely admit they (and their ilk still on the street) don’t care what the law says. They will obtain a gun in any way possible, and carry it regardless of whether its legal or not. They just don’t care as the law “doesn’t apply to them”.

So think about that next time somebody says “think of the children” or “if it could save only one life”. Statically speaking that “one life” saved equals over a thousand lost; not exactly a good trade in my book.
--------
Edit to add:

I did a bit more math to correct a failed assumption. Assuming a gun ban is put into place and ALL legal guns are turned in leaving only illegally obtained weapons in play (30% of those used in crime are illegally obtained), You still have almost 500 dead bodies for every person you save with the ban!

Even playing devil's advocate and poking holes in my own calculations I still cannot get to an acceptable level of savings. What they are proposing is like investing money in a stock that you know will have a 500% LOSS. (and possibly more) If you know it doesnt work, why do it?

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Cellphones during the movie was debated.... (1431 comments)

Cellphones during the movie was debated, but WEAPONS not?

IF he was carrying legally, of course not. We dont debate the merits of cars when a drunk driver kills a family by doing stupid things with a car.

bad people do bad things with inanimate objects. Talk about the REAL problem, (idiots) not the object.

about 6 months ago
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Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

alanshot Re:Double bind (1431 comments)

It was a retired cop.

And I do wonder why people would carry a gun when going to the movies.

Duh! Because nobody has ever walked into a theater and shot the place up? (ok, not that it is expected to happen again, but still. Proof it can happen)

Do you only buy life insurance when you travel? Only get car insurance for when you want to drive fast or during the winter when its more likely cars will slide into one another?

If you choose to carry, you carry most places. Doesnt matter if its at the theater, the store, the park, etc. Bad people willing to do bad things are everywhere you are. It isnt like a life jacket or bear spray that you can leave at home when you arent boating or hiking in the wilderness.

Guy was still a dick. Everyone knows texters only deserve a pistol whipping. LOL

I say they need to make the back 3 rows texting friendly. Anyone caught texting outside of those rows are fair game for immediate ejection with no refund. Maybe even banned from the property. If you cant be without texts/calls for 2 hours, you shouldnt be at the movies. First responder or someone who MUST be able to get texts? Sit your as on an end so you can easily excuse yourself if you get a text.

about 6 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do With Misdirected Email?

alanshot "lost password" is your friend. (388 comments)

Some schmuck is registering your email on a site you are trying to register for even though they dont control the address they registered? Quite simple: Do a password reset, wait for the reset message to land in your inbox, and voila'! You no longer have to worry about somebody who previously registered your email address (that they dont control) as an account at said website.

Lather rinse repeat.

*why yes, I *AM* a fan of BOFH. How could you tell?

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: State of the Art In DIY Security Systems?

alanshot Re:Dont fall for the subsidies... (248 comments)

Fuck off.

You must be an alarm system sales guy or company owner. LOL

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: State of the Art In DIY Security Systems?

alanshot Re:Dont fall for the subsidies... (248 comments)

A locally owned company might be more likely to go out of business, no?

Yes. But monitoring is monitoring. A local company will use industry standard components. (ADT doesnt always as they are big enough to have stuff custom made)

Your security installer or monitoring company goes under? Just call somebody else for monitoring. You just need a tech to reprogram who the panel phones home to in order to report the alarm.

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: State of the Art In DIY Security Systems?

alanshot Dont fall for the subsidies... (248 comments)

I work for a company that installs alarm systems. Dont want the insane mothly monitoring with a contract? Dont let them install "free" systems. You are paying many times over for the life of the contract for that "free" system.

Pay for the T&M up front, and many local companies will do the monitoring for as little as $10/month. (ADT and other national companies wont, but odds are you have a locally owned company that will.)

And beware DIY systems; If you dont do it RIGHT, you can end up paying more due to false alarm fees. Many municipalities charge per alarm after so many alerts. So if you dont know what you are doing and end up sending in multiple false alarm calls the the police, you could end up paying hundreds per incident in penalties.

about 7 months ago
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60% of Americans Unaware of Looming Incandescent Bulb Phase Out

alanshot Re:What is the best way to buy some in bulk? (944 comments)

Check out Home Depot. Best prices so far on LEDs. typically $10/$15 for standard 40/60 watt equivalents. Still not as cheap as CFL, but ZERO MERCURY and typically VERY hard to break.

My only beef is the glaring lack of "high output" (>100W) and decent candelabra wattage (40-60)

I have a bunch of ceiling fans that all take that new fangled specialty bulb. And the fan industry seems to have hopped on the CFL bandwagon with this new two post bayonet style bulb. Really pisses me off that I cant run LED in quite a few of my fixtures due to either VERY limited, underpowered choices, or no choice at all.

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Simple Backups To a Neighbor?

alanshot Re:You are already on track with Crashplan and a N (285 comments)

Check the Buffalo units. they are awesome. http://www.buffalotech.com/products/network-storage. Many of their products allow for access from about every system out there, SMB, FTP, etc.

You could also be running into port blocking issues at the ISP. That is where my suggestion of buying your friend a new router with VPN support. At that point you setup a VPN from your workstation to the NAS via the new router and you can have full access to the disk across the wire.

Its tricky, but in theory it should work.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Simple Backups To a Neighbor?

alanshot You are already on track with Crashplan and a NAS! (285 comments)

You have everything you need in your description...just dont use his computer!

Buy a simple single disk NAS box. Then simply ask your neighbor, best friend, etc. (or relative across town) to plug it into their router (and tweak the port forwarding) so you can access it. Then use Crashplan (and something like DynDns.org) to make sure you can always resolve to that share.

I'd also suggest buying your data host a "thank you" gift of a brand new router that supports VPN (and remote admin so you can tweak) so you can encrypt your data tunnel and access it reliably.

Yes, its more complex than that, but you are already on the right track. Just add your own autonomous hardware at the remote site (and maybe a new router for their trouble) and you are all set.

Even better if you can reciprocate for your friend and host their backups.

I will add one cautionary warning. If you want TRUE disaster recovery, DONT use your neighbor. Flood? Tornado? Wildfire? Choose your remote host wisely. Remember if you need to recover your data, driving up to a couple hours to retrieve your backup wont be a big deal in the heat of the moment. Simply having it safe will give you warm fuzzies in your car on the trip to get the recovery media. But to be standing there saying "YES! I backed up off site!" only to realize your offsite backup across the street was also destroyed by the same disaster doesnt really help matters. (and will only put you deeper into despair) Just google "2008 Columbus, IN Flood" or "Richmond hill explosion pictures" for examples.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: IT Staff Handovers -- How To Take Over From an Outgoing Sys Admin?

alanshot Re: There is only one way... (195 comments)

When the time rolled around to do the recurring programming tweak/task/report, they asked him to come in and he did... FOR FREE! *SMH*

Oh, and to make matters worse, I believe the task was part of a billable event to a customer. They made money coming and going off of him.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: IT Staff Handovers -- How To Take Over From an Outgoing Sys Admin?

alanshot Re: There is only one way... (195 comments)

Then you good sir: are an asshole.

As a poorly paid IT admin that manages thousands of devices across every province in Canada, I'm happy to answer questions about anything I've worked on YEARS later.

I agree... to a point. If its more than a quick 10-15 minute call they can expect to be billed for my time. Well, that is unless I was terminated, then the consulting clock starts ticking the minute the phone rings.

There is a fine line between an ongoing piece-meal brain dump, and raping you by asking you to come in for an hour or more to consult. Dont want to pay me for my time? Figure it out for yourself. *shrug*

I've been in both situations... happily answered the phone several times a day several times a week to answer quick questions. But when they wanted me to come in and spend several hours of MY time and gallons of gasoline (note its no longer THEIR time so I deserve compensation for something I am giving to them) damn skippy they can pay me just like they do the other consultants that come and go.

Felt sorry for one poor soul I used to work with. Was the only one in the company that could do what he did, and it was needed at least 3x a year. He let them walk all over him after they terminated him for no good reason. When the time rolled around to do the recurring programming tweak/task/report, they asked him to come in and he did... FOR FREE! *SMH*

about a year ago
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Colorado Company Says It Plans To Test Hyperloop Transport System

alanshot Imppssible... (258 comments)

Something this precise cant possibly be maintained.

Reminds me of the Top Thrill dragster. At every run it weighs the passengers + cars and exerts the exact force to get them JUST over the top without flying off or rolling back. The few times I have been there it has gone down several times a day for maintenance.

If Cedar Point cant keep something complex, yet not nearly so of this proposed venture running smoothly for its 1000 FEET of track, how in the hell do you expect something this mammoth to run smoothly over 3000 MILES of "track".

Just another pie in the sky "flying cars for everyone" vision.

1 year,14 days

Submissions

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alanshot alanshot writes  |  more than 7 years ago

alanshot writes "We have been using Adobe Acrobat Approval 5 since it came out, and love it. (For those that arent aware, approval is half reader, half full version. it allows you to fill out and save adobe forms (reader only allows you to print said forms (and not save), but not create new documents. It was a great product.)

Has anyone else found a good alternative to Approval for forms? We cant go web forms, because we dont have a web developer, dont want to hire one as a consultant every time we need a form changed, and cant force our users onto the network just to fill out a form if they are offsite.

In Adobe's infinite wisdom, they abandoned the Approval line a while back, so the only way to get the same features is to upgrade to the full version. For my company thats about $80,000. Management finds that hard to swallow.

It hasnt been all that bad until recently, when alot of our vendors upgraded and started producing documents that dont display properly in older versions (pre 7.0). This is leading to headaches with two versions of Adobe Acrobat and more end user training for the workaround.

  Thanks for that "standard" format Adobe."
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alanshot alanshot writes  |  more than 7 years ago

alanshot writes "What is the best way to stop the attitude of "I dont need to learn this, that is what we have you guys for"?

As some background, I am one of 3 techs in a relatively low tech company. our 18 sites are spread over 8 states, so most of my 350 computer users are not physically near me.

On a daily basis we deal with the users via IM, email, and telephone support. On occasion we are forced to send incredibly detailed, step by step instructions to the users to have them perform some relatively mundane tasks such as making a config change, installing a patch (think DST), etc. Many of the users take the attitude of "I dont need to do this, I'll just wait until IT confronts me about it and let them do it via remote console. Besides, this is too hard to do, I dont have time, its not my job, and [insert other irrelevant excuse(s) here]"

They also treat thier computers with the same amount of respect that a 3yo does his toys. They dont worry about going to an insecure site, mindlessly clicking any random link that pops up, etc. After all, "Our guys are great, they can fix anything I can do to this."

If you do the math, you understand very quickly that this attitude doesnt work, and contributes to a higher than necessary workload for my department.

How do you go about changing the attitudes of your users, and help them understand that they need to take the responsibility to operate thier computers in a more responsible manner, as well as perform the actions requested of them in order to keep thier computers maintained and running properly.

(We are well on our way to implementing a fully managed environment, so the answer isnt "automate, use RIS/WSUS/GPO's, etc.")"

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