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Mac OS X Lion Has a Browser-Only Mode

chappel Windows should have similar feature (231 comments)

I've thought for years that windows should have a 'boot to Outlook' feature for executives; allow the entire available space of the drive to be used for indexed email storage to avoid having to decide which emails to delete, and load office programs by clicking on attachments, but don't confuse them with any other interface than just Outlook.

And optionally support rebooting by holding it upside down and shaking.


more than 3 years ago

My last airplane flight ...

chappel private pilot (264 comments)

My last flight took off when I pulled back on the stick (which was a good hour later than I'd originally intended, but it's different when it's your own fault), and landed early due to a tailwind. If I weren't able to fly myself, I'd do a LOT more driving - I don't think I could stand all the security BS anymore - although the average coach seat is probably roomier than my little plane.

more than 3 years ago

CmdrTaco Visits Pixar

chappel come visit my home office (128 comments)

Nothing particularly interesting here - mostly old tech crap - but there isn't any heat, and in the midst of a minnesota winter 'cool' is an understatement.

Can I upgrade my tee-shirt to a /. parka?

more than 3 years ago

iMac Gets Thunderbolt I/O, Quad-core

chappel Re:Great but (437 comments)

My yearning for a 'mini-Pro' is the current inability to install two drives internally on native SATA ports. Three times now I've had drive issues that I could fix using tools that worked fine on the drive on a native internal SATA port, but the utilities wouldn't see the drive (or at least couldn't fix the issues) through an external USB or FW converter / enclosure. Once I was able to borrow a Pro, the second time I tore apart an older iMac and ran the utility (paaaainfully slowly) off a bootable DVD.

I'd love to get a full-blown Mac Pro, but can't afford to blow $3k. I'm tempted to save a bit and build a hackentosh, but I'm afraid just when I need it for something it'll blow up and require days of intricate patching to restore, all without any 'official' support (for whatever that's worth). I'd settle for even an eSATA port, or the ability to add a card that has one. I'm definitely not buying a Pro until it supports SATA3.

I'm sure the Thunder-whatever port will be cool; I'm looking forward to the prices dropping - but I have my doubts it will work any better for drive tech work.


more than 3 years ago

Auditors Question TSA's Tech Spending, Security Solutions

chappel Re:Two words: sniffer dogs. (239 comments)

they don't have to grope you.

It isn't a _grope_ as such, but being racked in the nuts by a dogs nose certainly isn't _pleasant_ - although somehow I'd consider it less offensive than when it's done by some TSA dude.

more than 3 years ago

Auditors Question TSA's Tech Spending, Security Solutions

chappel Re:see what happens when point out holes in the TS (239 comments)

I've got an IFR pilot rating and an RV-8 - which gets about 170 knots and a decent range, although it's pretty cramped (better than coach, though), and lacks de-icing capabilities, I regularly fly it around the central US, and for most flights it's faster than commercial (counting drive-to-airport, checking in, waiting, flying, retrieving baggage and leaving airport), and no 'freedom fondle' or worrying about breakage, theft or the TSA rule-of-the-week. As an example, from my home in west-central MN to a client site in Dallas is about a 20 hour drive (direct), about a 6 hour flight in my plane (with one pit stop), or about 7 hours commercially (3.5 hours to 'real' airport, 1 hour AT airport, about 3 hours in air). Fuel is a bit more than a typical coach fare, but less than two tickets if I bring a passenger (it's a 2-seater). I occasionally have to wait or divert for weather, but I get to do it on MY schedule, not the airlines. It isn't for everybody, but it's not as far fetched as many think. I've had the plane about 6 years and I've been (for business or recreation) all over - Fargo, Minneapolis, Chicago, Indianapolis, Cleveland, DC, Orlando, Key West, Dallas, Phoenix, St Louis, Atlanta, and hundreds of smaller towns around the country.

On top of that, the plane is fully aerobatic and fun as hell.

more than 3 years ago

Military Pressuring Vendors On IPv6

chappel appliance support? (406 comments)

I'm a networking guy excited to play with some new tech, but I've been putting off converting my 'basement' network to IPv6 because sure, all the PCs (mac and linux) and routers (cisco and openWRT) will be easy, but what about all my legacy appliances? I check HPs website every 6 months or so to see if they've released a firmware update for my multi-function printer/scanner, but nothing. So far Polycom hasn't mentioned any support for their SIP phones, and Asterisk is still just dabbling with it - so far only SNOM and Yealink (and yealink only as of November) support IPv6 SIP phones (that I've been able to find), and SIP is supposed to be one of the IPv6 'killer apps', since all the hassle of transitioning NAT goes away. I won't even go into my mvix media player, chumby alarm clock, or nabastag wifi talking rabbit. Is it safe to assume the Wii doesn't do IPv6, either? I have yet to find an ISP that is even considering IPv6. I was impressed apparently the iPhone supports IPv6 since iOS v4, and that my folks Brother LaserJet (wifi/ethernet) supports IPv6, but I don't want to upgrade my printer just to not have to mess with dual stacks - I guess we'll get there eventually.

I'll start playing with dual stacks one of these days, but at the moment it doesn't appear to get me anything beyond novelty and geek cred.

more than 3 years ago

E Ink Unveils Color E-Reader Display

chappel color e-ink killer app: digital picture frames (164 comments)

I've been waiting for years for color e-ink to mature enough to make a good digital picture frame. Something cheap, lightweight, with great viewing angles, daylight readable, non-reflective, awesome resolution, takes no power in between refreshes - heck, you could set it to only switch 1x day and run it for a year on a small battery.

Sounds like they are getting closer - keep at it, guys!

more than 3 years ago

TSA To Make Pat-Downs More Embarrassing To Encourage Scanner Use

chappel Re:Maybe a solution? (642 comments)

I'm a private pilot, with my own plane, and have also been through lots of airports - mostly tiny ones, but I've been to some larger ones, including Dulles, Indianapolis, and Orlando. I must have been to at least 150 different ones within the US. The most security I've seen consists of the cute girl behind the service desk needing to push a release button for you to walk out the doors to the plane, the next most security has been several airports with a white stripe painted across the parking area delineating the 'private' from the 'carrier' areas, which you aren't supposed to walk across on penalty of a stern warning - although all the larger ones have a considerable distance between the ramps for private planes and the commercial ones. So far the only effective security I've seen is at the little strip where I learned to fly, where the owner lives along side the runway, and keeps an eye on things.

I always fly with a pocket knife, and have flown with a handgun in a waist holster. I don't ever recall seeing a security agent; there are no checkpoints. If your plane doesn't crash, explode or get a 'ramp check' from the FAA (which I've heard about but never witnessed), no one would ever know what you had on board.

more than 3 years ago

Sony HDTVs To Come With Google TV Interface

chappel Re:How long until Sony starts subtracting features (124 comments)

Wow, guess I struck a nerve with the Sony Fanboys. Sure, I could research and find out if a particular Sony product does something underhanded and unexpected, and should have researched the walkman, but I had been really happy with my previous sony products, and had no reason to suspect that if the box SAID it was an MP3 player that they'd be lying. After the ensuing years of proprietary hardware, root-kits, and support for the RIAA, I don't care if they DO happen to puke out a decent product, I know part of the proceeds from it go to screwing people, and that just doesn't sit right with me, and I encourage others to spend their dollars more wisely whenever I get the chance.

more than 3 years ago

Texting On the Rise In the US

chappel So how long (468 comments)

until all those teens realize the cellular carriers are royally screwing them on texting plans, and rise up to do something about it?

about 4 years ago

Apple Launches New Magical Trackpad, 12 Core Macs

chappel still no USB3/SATA6gb :-( (432 comments)

I really don't need even four cores, but I'd sure love to have the option to move lots of data much faster. I can't remember the last time I waited more than a second or two for something to process (ok, I guess converting RAW to jpg would go faster) but it seems several times a week I'm moving mass quantities of data - photos, movies, backup images - and waiting for 30-60 or more minutes for USB or FW800, and lusting after BANDWIDTH. I was hoping Apple would cook in some rockin' fast bit shuffling, rather than spending $3000 on a machine, then more to band-aid on a faster interface card.

I'd be all over a 'mini Pro' - let me keep my monitor between upgrades, and add a card or two to customize it to what I need, and update with the times without a forklift.

more than 4 years ago

Long In Development, Toshiba 'SCiB' Battery Debuts

chappel Re:game changing, if true (284 comments)

I'm curious - can't you use plain gasoline through a fuel cell to get electricity? Wouldn't it make sense to make an electric motor driven car - and get all the efficiencies of an all-electric drive train, and get the electricity via a modular fuel cell run off a standard gas tank, that has all the current benefits of our awesome fuel distribution system, which could then be augmented by or eventually swapped for a battery/capacitor/ Mr Fusion module once they become practical realities?

more than 4 years ago

Europe To Import Sahara Solar Power Within 5 Years

chappel Re:Only 1% (450 comments)

"you gain essentially an entire country."


more than 4 years ago

I usually fly...

chappel Re:Economy Class (365 comments)

Checks your pilot's license and looks at your luggage? weird - that's more security than I've ever encountered as a private pilot, including flying in and out of Dulles.

Heading out tomorrow, and fully expect my passenger and I to be the only ones on the airport. I love small town general aviation.

Having the option to choose normal or inverted flight rocks, and is a good simulation of commercial baggage handling, if you happen to miss that.

more than 4 years ago

Next iPhone — Front-Facing Camera, A4 Processor

chappel AT&T sucks (327 comments)

God I hope the new iPhone has a model that will run on Verizon. I don't care if it actually DOES, or if it is ever supported by VZW, I just want AT&T to feel enough pressure to make an effort to suck less.

I bought a 3Gs iPhone last fall, anticipating spending much of my time in Dallas. My reality turned out a bit different, now I'm living in rural Minnesota. I'm still forced to pay full price for 'unlimited' data, even though haven't seen a 3G connection since October. I was promised tethering was 'just around the corner', too - not that it matters - it'd be faster to walk to a hotspot than use a tethered EDGE connection. Now I see AT&T is budgeting major expansions in MN - all around the metro area, still 100 miles outside my stomping grounds. North and South Dakota aren't even on the AT&T map. I was recently visiting Warroad, MN, on the Canadian border, and couldn't even make a voice call. Crookston doesn't even have EDGE service. AT&T pisses and moans about folks who actually take them for their word about 'unlimited' data, but I'd sure like to have my bill cut back as compensation for not getting ANY 3G service. On the up side, I keep the 3G radio off and get GREAT battery life.

I know lots of /.ers will think I'm an idiot 'fanboy' for keeping the iPhone, but I really like the apps I've got on it - I use it for billing, task management, weather and flight planning and lots of other stuff - and the apps integrate nicely with my macbook. I'd have gone with a droid/google phone, but at the time it was only available on T-Mobile, and I KNEW that wouldn't work for me. In the future I'm worried that the droid platform will be so windows-centric that I'll get the short end of the cool app stick as a mac user.

For the moment I feel like I'm watching a race to see who wins - the Droid to provide apps I need on their vastly superior VZW coverage, or AT&T to expand the coverage for their superior apps. Maybe I should just trade the iPhone in for a Touch in the mean time. :-(

more than 4 years ago

Senate Votes To Replace Aviation Radar With GPS

chappel pros and cons (457 comments)

I'm glad they passed the bill, we really need an updated system. The new stuff gives more accurate info, and (supposedly) will include very accurate weather information (for free) similar to what XM sells for something like $500/yr. Old-fashioned radar coverage works poorly in hilly / mountainous terrain, and gps navigation allows direct flight which will save time, fuel and bucks. The old-time systems are disappearing (NDBs are becoming a rare novelty - and good riddance, I say). I'm also pleased that this doesn't seem to have included 'user fees' for general aviation, which would serve as a deterrent to private flight, and make it more expensive to stay in practice, and more dangerous as a result.

Having said all that, I AM disappointed at the general direction of being tracked and my whereabouts logged with even more consistency and precision by some government entity. Big brother is smacking his lips over this, but at least THIS time we actually get some convenience for our trade off of privacy.

I live in a radar 'dead' zone, and don't have to worry about the FAA watching when occasionally buzzing a neighbor; guess I'd better enjoy it while I can.

more than 4 years ago

I usually fly...

chappel Re:I use high speed passenger rail (549 comments)

I don't have a link handy, but I've read an interesting article pointing out that in the late 1800s/early 1900s the railroads grew SO powerful in the US that they were buying elections, monopolizing commerce and generally threatening the health of the country. The federal government apparently attempted to back them down, but in the end resorted to running them out of business by strongly subsidizing interstate highways, buses, trucks and private cars, and implemented extensive anti-monopoly laws. The point of the story was that the reason the US rail system is in total shambles was the result of 100 years of them being beaten back from nearly taking over the country.

Now, we've ended up where property values and the number of whiny voters would never allow new rail where people live, and nobody would ever care to pay for it where they don't - so it's pretty unlikely high speed rail could ever get the land necessary to put down new tracks, even if it made sense.

I hope my Grandkids can write similar tales of why the media and "IP" industry is so different in 100 years.

oh - I used to fly commercial several times a month, but now I fly myself, drive or stay home. Screw security theater.

more than 4 years ago

IT Snake Oil — Six Tech Cure-Alls That Went Bunk

chappel Re:The crazy hottie (483 comments)

I still remember a visit from a PC sales rep that was hired straight off the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleading squad. OMG I bet she could sell computers.

more than 4 years ago


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