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Man In Tesla Model S Fire Explains What Happened

elijahu Re:"three-pronged trailer hitch"? (526 comments)

Wow, a lot of slashdotters were apparently simultaneously familiar with trailer hitches (or had googled 3-way balls already).

about 10 months ago

Man In Tesla Model S Fire Explains What Happened

elijahu Re:"three-pronged trailer hitch"? (526 comments)

Maybe he meant 3-ball or 3-way trailer hitch. Google Images will give you better, surprisingly G-rated results.

about 10 months ago

GIMP, Citing Ad Policies, Moves to FTP Rather Than SourceForge Downloads

elijahu Re:FTP? (336 comments)

"Nowadays"? I remember that as being a feature of Mosaic circa 1993.

about 10 months ago

GIMP, Citing Ad Policies, Moves to FTP Rather Than SourceForge Downloads

elijahu Re:Why not GitHub (336 comments)

Ouch. I'm not sure I want to download anything from a site with open sores. Are they using some sort of new HTML5 <oozy/> tag? Is there a browser plugin to protect against that?

about 10 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Do You Use Markdown and Pandoc?

elijahu Re:I use (204 comments)

I am surprised that reStructuredText hasn't been mentioned more in this conversation. I use vim in iTerm2 [not sure what the draw is for people to use MacVim versus just running vim in a terminal]. I write in LaTeX sometimes, but often will draft up whatever I'm writing in reStructuredText, convert to LaTeX with, and then tweak as need in LaTeX. I've used Markdown some, but I'm not sure why it seems to be more popular than ReST. Granted, the latter is far from perfect, and sometimes costs me more time than it should. I'd be interested to see if anyone in this thread delves into the pro's and con's of one of the more frequently used markup languages than the other -- besides LaTeX. I mean one that focuses on human readability, yet still gives the ability to easily convey contextual meaning into LaTeX, or HTML, etc.

As for other styles of editing, I dabbled with LyX recently, but then realized that I really have no desire to do any textual work outside of vim. Besides the fact that I leave too many j's and k's scattered around forgetting that I'm not in normal mode, I give up too much and gain too little outside of vim. And I don't mean to start a religious war. I have great respect for anyone willing to risk the serious muscular damage necessary to do anything in emacs. I just think that it's hard to beat doing your grunt work in the plaintext editor of your choice and then converting at your whim to the format of your choice. As far as needing to see quick feedback on what you are doing, it usually only takes me a few keystrokes to render to pdf, and if I've already been looking at it in Preview, just changing window focus back to it usually auto updates to the new changes.

about a year ago

DoD Descends On DEFCAD

elijahu Re:Uh, no. (496 comments)

I think you mean:
s/arms/nuclear weapons/g

about a year ago

Evil, Almost Full Vim Implementation In Emacs, Reaches 1.0

elijahu Re:Well, that's cool and all, but.... (252 comments)

I started to agree with you, but then you went a bogus direction.

"Intelligent people" do understand that it's meaningless (though occasionally amusing) to argue whether vi/m or emacs is better, but that's because they understand that if you've invested the effort to truly learn and use either, that your text editing capability will be far superior to what can be done in any other text editing tool.

Yes, it's just text editing. While there are some new features that crop up from time to time as new tools or formats come along, the basic complexities of text manipulation have been pretty well figured out and solutions implemented for a long time. This is the reason why emacs and vi/m remain so successful, because they remain a collective memory of decades worth of solutions to text manipulation challenges (just as Linux is a collective memory of solutions to computing challenges). There's a whole world "in" there, it just takes a bit of devotion to explore it.

There have not been "superior" alternatives to both. There have been attempts to try to because emacs and vi have steep learning curves. The alternatives have invariably fallen short, however, because while you can dumb down an interface, you lose that ability to effectively tap into that vast pool of solutions emacs and vi offer. You also loose the efficiency gain from their ui philosophy, which may have originated in the 70's low-bandwidth terminal mentality, but guess what, it's still just text on the screen and those old mentalities still have more relevance than you may understand.

The alternatives also all tend to fail to capture the full scope of the capabilities that emacs and vi offer. Someone further up the thread called them 'esoteric'. If your job is to manipulate text all day long, those 'esoteric' factors can have a tremendous impact on your effectiveness.

Muscle memory is, indeed part of it, but not the full story. Its about effective use of my time. It's not that people that use emacs or vi are "thinking to hard", its that people who aren't are working too hard and maybe haven't though enough. While you're scratching your head and waving your mouse pointer around trying to find the right menu to do open to reveal some set of options from which you have to choose which one might or might not fully do the text manipulation task you need it to do, I've already done exactly what I wanted to do with a few keystrokes. The next time it needs to be done, you'll still be wandering through your menus, and it will still just be a few keystroke for me (possibly fewer if I've made a macro). Its about investing the time to learn from the folks that already figured it out, and having a system that makes future repetition of that process as streamlined as possible.

Oh, and universality... you may think Unix is niche, but there sure seems to be a lot of it around. It's pretty hard to find one that doesn't have vi, emacs, or both on it. Macs are also niche, I guess, but there again you'll find vi and emacs just a terminal prompt away. Maybe your world is Windows-centric. I'm sorry, but even there you can easily download either. The investment made in learning the capabilities of either are useable on any system you might encounter. There are few (if any) alternatives that can make the same claim and offer the same features.

about a year and a half ago

What's Keeping You On Windows?

elijahu ...profit? (1880 comments)

I find it surprising that someone doesn't see this as an opportunity. Many of the respondents in this thread have indicated they use Macs now at home. Those that don't seem to do so more out of a political/religious dislike for the company rather than an actual preference for the functionality of Windows over OSX in all areas but gaming. To me, though, a solid financial management tool really stands out as a missing piece of Mac software. That and a Visio-type tool, which someone mentioned further up the thread, seem to be open doors for someone to come in and make a good product and profit.

more than 2 years ago

Ballmer Hints At 'Metro-ization' of Office

elijahu Dumbed-down indeed. (302 comments)

Readers of Slashdot use WYSIWYG word processors? I thought we gave only grief and ridicule to anyone who wasn't still using ed to write TeX for all of their office documents. The idea of using various too-brightly colored squares to interface with text does strike me a ludicrous, but then I've been criticized before for using LaTeX (a real geek wouldn't rely on someone else's macros, but would have rolled their own).

about 3 years ago

CmdrTaco at Kennedy Space Center

elijahu Re:@cmdrtaco has only 250 followers? (105 comments)

Maybe in Twitter, but just casually glancing around a bit I see /. user numbers in the >1.7 mil range. When you get that many people signed up to read your tweets, then come back and talk smack.

BTW, nice score on the press creds, Taco. Have a great time. Hope the weather clears and they get that thing off the ground.

more than 3 years ago

German Foreign Office Going Back To Windows

elijahu Re:three points (901 comments)


I have long discounted Free/Open Source software for productivity tools.


I don't completely discount them, as there are some (Firefox and Chrome, for example) that surpass their non-FOSS counterparts. Of course I'm being generous in considering browsers "productivity" tools, but they can be in a work environment where the applications are heavily web-based. Sadly, none of the FOSS attempts at spreadsheets has been able to truly match Excel, and even non-FOSS competitors (Numbers, which I have made honest attempts to switch to) fall short. In many office environments, spreadsheets are too much of a core component to overlook, and seemingly minor issues of missing functionality, when encountered regularly in a "why won't this do what I know the other program will" kind of way adds up quickly to equal major user dissatisfaction.

...Usability is not something you can do as an afterthought. Either you have it designed in from the start, or it won't be there.

I very much agree. While I've been impressed with the strides made by Ubuntu, it still lacks a lot of the intuitive usability you get from OS X or even Windows. Its hard for many /.'ers to set aside their experienced view, put themselves in the mindset of a person with limited computer experience, and really understand how baffling a new OS can be if not built for an intuitive user experience.

and poor interoperability."

While many in this thread have scoffed at the idea of drivers remaining an issue, and perhaps they are for printing, I have had several generations of great scanners now that never did and never will work with Linux. It is very frustrating in an office environment to have the need to do something trivial, like scan a document, and be told that it isn't possible because the correct drivers don't exist. Could you please wait a few months for someone in your IT department to try their hand at coding a driver and then try to scan again? Maybe they could have simply gone out and purchased the right scanner hardware. I'm guessing there are some pieces of software out there for Linux that make document capturing easy to use, but I've never seen them because I've never managed to get that far before the need to get the job done overcame my stubbornness for doing it in Linux.

The .xslx point was a good one. There are many times where a document in a Microsoft format "can" be opened in a FOSS tool, but in which the formatting is off by enough to make it a big mess. Calls for going back to MS only takes an one upper management type getting badly embarrassed in an important meeting when the fancy PowerPoint presentation he made at home in Microsoft chokes and dies in the FOSS software that his IT shop told him was compatible.

more than 3 years ago

Foursquare-Style Checking In For Couch Potatoes

elijahu Re:mobile app... Charmin (86 comments)

Umm, that would be the "SitOrSquat: Bathroom Finder" app [], sponsored by Charmin.

about 4 years ago

Microsoft Claims Google Chrome Steals Your Privacy

elijahu MS "fuzzing" Pwn2Own results? (522 comments)

How is Microsoft's response here not them trying desperately to spin their way past the latest Pwn2Own results from CanSecWest? Safari, Firefox and IE8 all went down pretty quickly. Chrome wasn't even attempted. Nobody there had a way to take it down. Money was left on the table.
( )

Microsoft's response?

First claim that Windows 7 isn't really meant to prevent you from hacking into it.
( )

Then try to convince people Chrome is somehow worse.

Seem's like that makes your choice to either accept that a company like Google knows what information you're looking for [turn off the option, heck even use a different browser. I'm sure they can figure it out anyway.] or letting random anyhacker access ALL the data on your system.

I'll take option A thanks.

more than 4 years ago

First Malicious iPhone Worm In the Wild

elijahu Re:Passwd is not the solution (135 comments)

You do not know what you are talking about.

While that might be "a" way to change the password, the MobileTerminal program provides a convenient shell from which passwd works just fine. It is strongly recommended that the root and the "mobile" accounts' passwords are changed from their default. Instructions for doing so abound even with screen shots for people who can't be bothered to read. While there is the "hassle" of having to install MobileTerminal, I'm not sure this is really too much trouble for someone that has gone to the effort to jailbreak in the first place.

That being said, Saurik should be able to make the installation process for OpenSSH ask the user to change the passwords. It also should not be enabled by default, or turn itself back on after it is turned off (in my experience the OpenSSH program has a tendency to do both).

more than 4 years ago

New DoD Memo On Open Source Software

elijahu Re:Crash! (146 comments)

Shut up, Steve, and go back to figuring out how to get people to think that Windows 7 is as cool as Binging things on their Zune.

more than 4 years ago

A New Explanation For the Plight of Winter Babies

elijahu School & Sports ?? (276 comments)

It might make an interesting study to compare the success of kids with "late" birthdays who started on-time/early versus those who had to wait an extra year.

I thought I'd heard of a similar study where kids with winter birth dates excelled at sports because they tended to miss cut-off dates for teams, and therefore were older, larger, faster, and more mature than the kids they were teamed with each year. This leads to them getting more time handling the ball as they grow up.

more than 4 years ago

26 Years Old and Can't Write In Cursive

elijahu You are illiterate (921 comments)

Seriously. If you can't read well written cursive then you shouldn't just "feel" illiterate, you should acknowledge that you are, in fact, not literate. At least in my opinion.

illiterate - 2.a. Marked by inferiority to an expected standard of familiarity with language and literature. (Source:

This leads to the discussion of whether or not reading and writing in cursive is an "expected standard of familiarity." I believe that it is. It might be argued, however, that our society either no longer expects -- or expects but no longer requires -- the capability to read and write script. Perhaps it is most accurate to say that true English language literacy (both using cursive and spelling as examples) is no longer required for adequate social acceptance and job performance due to the capability of our machines to be literate for us.

more than 5 years ago

USNS Hoyt S. Vandenberg To Be Sunk For a Reef

elijahu Re:Too deep... (169 comments)

Except that according to the wiki page on the ship (already linked above) the draft of the Vandenberg is 24' and it's 71.5' wide. Add to that a significant amount of freeboard and superstructure (judging by the picture). Not sure how close that would put the top of the ship to standard recreational diving limits (~60') but PADI Advanced Open Water (AOW) cert allows for diving up to ~100' and the "deep diver" certifications (130') putting most of the ship within reach.

more than 5 years ago

Ancient Books Go Online

elijahu Re:Was the racist overtone intended??? (198 comments)

Perhaps I just read it differently, but I think you're projecting "racism" where none was intended.

Internet usage penetration by population is still tends to be larger in countries with Euro-Centric histories. Isn't UNESCO headquarters also in Europe?

My take on the GP's statement was that it is unsurprising that European texts are more largely represented at first in terms of quantity that have been digitized. Would it be "racist" to point out the fact that the WDL was based on work already started by the [US] Library of Congress (which is probably a bit Euro-heavy).

When looked at in terms of potential for being added to the collection, I would think that the current amount of current Middle Eastern texts is indeed "paltry", and it was correctly pointed out that the percentages should change as the project grows. With the heavy financial contributions coming from the Middle East, the vast potential for ancient material from both there and from East Asia yet to be digitized, and the internet usage number (especially in E. Asia), I'd think those numbers should be very different before long.

more than 5 years ago


elijahu hasn't submitted any stories.



elijahu elijahu writes  |  more than 5 years ago

I just noticed the achievement points. Haven't quite figured them out yet. There are numbers next to them which aren't exactly self explanatory. I can't decide if CmdrTaco has read /. 25, 5, or 2^5 days in a row. And Level 80 & the Cheater? Hmmm.

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