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Belgium Plans Artificial Island To Store Wind Power

drago lifting land instead (242 comments)

Some time ago I read an article where a German professor suggested to dig out a cylindrical hole of some 100 meters across and lift it with the excess energy. There was a nice mock up picture going along with it, showing a house and a cow being lifted ;-)

about 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Best Connect Scheme For a 2-ISP Household?

drago OSM (206 comments)

Time to put that nice collection of data into Openstreetmap. Volunteers?

more than 3 years ago

Canada's Largest Cities Seeing the End of the Phone Book

drago Germany already has this (206 comments)

They're doing a similar kind of thing here in Germany for some years already, you only get a postcard telling you there's a new phonebook and yellowpages available and where to get it. If you want one, you can collect any number you need at the next post office, certain gas stations and in bigger cities at the central railroad station.

more than 4 years ago

Google Acquires Online Image Editing Tool Picnik

drago Re:Eating Yahoo's lunch (84 comments)

I'd rather say they're going to take Picnik out of business just to step on Yahoos foot while ramping up the advertising for picasaweb at the same time ;-)

more than 4 years ago

Pen Still Mightier Than the Laptop For Notetaking?

drago Re:Notebook and Webcam/Camera Phone and OneNote (569 comments)

I hate to say it, but OneNote is really a great piece of software, especially when used on a tablet. There is just nothing like it (that I know of) in the open source world, and I have really searched. Basket maybe comes closest, but it's about 10% of the functionality. The thing about OneNote is that it is not yet another note-taking foo but it allows you to insert just about any document "as a printout", and you can not only scribble into that printout, but due to the built in OCR software you can also copy texts from it.

more than 4 years ago

Smarter Clients Via ReverseHTTP and WebSockets

drago Re:Connection, yes. Server, no. (235 comments)

What you mention is a general trend in IT. First we had a mainframe with dumb clients, then we wanted to use the computing power of our PCs and created rich clients (Windows applications mostly). We realized this is a maintenance hell with versions ever diverging, so we put our applications on the web and had dumb clients again (web browsers). Now, starting with Java applets and continuing with this webserver in a browser stuff, we are on the way to a rich client again. See the pendulum swinging? I'm curious what the next dumb client model will look like, 10-20 years in the future we will know.

more than 5 years ago

Collaborative Software For Pair Programming?

drago Re:Use subversion either hosted or your own server (302 comments)

Using a version control system should be mandatory anyways. It does not really matter which one, although I also like git best, the most important thing here is to bring your students to getting used to version control systems. They should embrace them as a normal and invaluably useful thing which can be used not only for programming but also for e.g. managing the work on their next thesis paper.
But anyways, that's not the point in pair programming. The point is to sit next to each other and do the work together, at the same time in the same file. If physically sitting next to each other is not possible that's a pity because I think it cannot be as effective remotely, but well, when this is the constraint in your case, you have to deal with it. Several tools have been named already, but not the most basic one: screen. It is installable in every Linux version I know (and of the BSD's at least on OpenBSD) and simple to use. Just make it setuid root, start it on one of the hosts, enter ctrl-a ":multiuser on" and ctrl-a "acladd " to allow access from another user. Let the other student log in to the machine and execute "screen -x". Now they share a shell and each can see what the other one types. The drawback of course is that they are limited to using old-school text editors like vi or Emacs and no fancy GUI editors. On the other hand this has the advantage that they really learn how to program and not only to click together some pretty looking stuff without having any idea at all how it works.

more than 5 years ago

A Black Day For Internet Freedom In Germany

drago full ack (420 comments)

That's just about what I was going to write here. I feel the same and I would happily emigrate rather today than tomorrow if I knew any country where the situation is better. Unfortunately this is a global problem and most of the people all over the world are too uninformed to see what's going on, or worse, they just don't care. I mean look, we got 130k signatures to the petition against that law, which is more than most petitions (no matter on which topic) ever reach, and still it's only about one promille of the people who signed it. This really makes me sad.

more than 5 years ago

Good Physics Books For a Math PhD Student?

drago road to reality (418 comments)

I can recommend "The road to reality - a complete guide to the laws of the universe" by Roger Penrose. The guy undoubtedly knows what he's talking about (being a famous physician himself) and the book is very math-centric. First the mathematical concepts are explained, then based on that the physics of our universe.

more than 6 years ago

(Useful) Stupid Unix Tricks?

drago Re:Share mouse and keyboard (2362 comments)

Or even more wonderful if you need a more permanent setup of this: synergy. It gives you basically the same functionality x2x does, but it also works on Windows and Mac (and also mixed environments of Linux, Windows and Mac of course). Couldn't live without it.

more than 6 years ago


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